Ultraman 1.36 – Don’t Shoot, Arashi!

This week’s monster is called Zaragas, and it’s another beast that has made several return engagements to the Ultraman franchise. In the nebulous way these things are scripted, it somehow has the power to adapt and get stronger after any attack, so the military overrules the Science Patrol and orders them off until some other scientists can figure out how to fight it.

So the episode becomes a character piece about duty and following orders for children: Arashi is absolutely certain that the “M-disintegrator” gun that Ito built will kill the creature, but Captain Mura has told him not to. I don’t know whether this story’s origin came from somebody suggesting to the producers that they do an episode about doing what you’re told, or whether actor Sandayū Dokumamushi, who plays Arashi, asked to have a week where he gets to do something meaty and take center stage, but either way, this is definitely an atypical and interesting episode as seen through a grown-up’s eyes.

For kids, though, it’s the usual mayhem. According to our five year-old critic, his favorite part was the fight, and his “very favorite part” was the end of the fight.

BONUS MATERIAL: Thanks to Atari Days for spotting this little clip released a year ago. There are some impressively super-adaptable Ultraman toys with a million joints and poses on the market, and some creative fellow made a stop-motion animation with the first two in the series. Check it out!

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