I wanted to use a better picture than a capture this time to make sure you can see this monster, which is called Pestar, really well. I was probably in my late twenties when I swapped for a batch of about twenty episodes of Ultraman on VHS. You want to know about feeling dumb? I rewound this episode, watched it again, paused it, and scratched my head, having absolutely no clue how the blazes they did it. The previous episode on the tape was the one with the pantomime horse dragon. I guess I could accept two actors in a horizontal suit easily; walking side-by-side with a puppet bat head between them just didn’t occur to me. It took me a stupidly long several minutes to figure this out.
Ultraman‘s miniature effects are badly dated and often laughably obvious, but this episode has a very, very good sequence with a massive fire spreading through an oil refinery. There are lots of extras running in terror within the plant, and a heck of a lot of cuts between the fire and several explosions on the miniature set and all the actors and extras rushing around on the real thing. It helps that this week’s monster is quite easily killed, and the climax is not Ultraman wrestling with a couple of guys in a fireproof suit, but rescuing Ito from a huge fire. This was quite entertaining, and had our son tremendously excited.
Photo credit: Ultraman Wiki