Friday, July 31, 2015

Tokusatsu Review: Kamen Rider Gaim Gaiden Zangetsu & Baron Part 1: THINK OF THE CHILDREN! (Spoilers)

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I've been waiting for these two for quite a while. As I've gone over several times before Gaim is currently my favorite Kamen Rider series and I know I should be throwing a bit of a fit that Toei is going to be milking this as much as they did with Den-O especially since as far as I can tell Urobuchi isn't going to be writing these direct to video spin-offs. Then again he hasn't exactly been having the best of luck with his more recent shows and projects and that personally makes me a bit of a Sad Panda. But hey if Gaim, Madoka, Psycho-Pass and Fate/Zero are his only good stuff then at least right now he has a better hit/miss record in my mind then George Lucas ( and no I haven't seen American Graffiti, it and Psycho-Pass are on my to do list).

But be of good cheer fair readers; these and subsequent Gaim Gaiden movies will be written by Nobuhiro Mōri and Jin Haganeya; both of whom assisted Urobuchi in writing Gaim and the movies so I still have hope for these spin-offs. I don't want to watch bad stuff if I can avoid it, but I do know that if corporations be it gaming, movies, toku whatever know something works they'll exploit the ever loving shit out of it until people get sick of it, just like with Den-O and its stretched out movie series. Now to start this review but first be forewarned; this will contain spoilers for Gaim since these movies take place between episodes 20 and 21 so before you read this go watch up until at least episode 21 then come back.
So we open on Takatora talking to Kouta at the end of episode 20 where Takatora finished showing Kouta the ruins of the Helheim Forest and explaining his plan to slowly kill off 6 billion people so that the remaining 1 billion have a chance of surviving the world being over taken by Helheim in the next ten years. Takatora also says that if Kouta gets in Yggdrasil's way again he's a dead man. Kouta of course is not happy and asks if Takatora really thinks that this plan is right, but he just walks off. Later that night we see some Kurokage Troopers burning down some of Helheim's plants that have started to sprout in Zawame.
The Kurokage troops are Yggdrasil's foot solders/ mass production Kamen Riders.
Suddenly a crack opens and the two stooges are attacked and knocked out, the next morning Takatora and Sid investigate what happened, Takatora thinking that Kouta might be the one responsible. Okay, he has probable cause but any evidence there chief? Sid of course asks what he'll do if Kouta was the culprit. Takatora saying that he'll eliminate him personally. After Sid leaves he says to himself that no matter how many people must be sacrificed it will be his burden to save what's left of humanity from Helheim.

Later on Takatora returns to his mansion where he has a flash back to his father telling him of Noblesse Oblige.
What pre Iron Man Tony Stark should have learned, but hey hindsight is 20/20.
His little brother Mitsuzane tells him that there's someone here to see him. Her name is Touka Akatsuki, she was his father's maid who Takatora hasn't seen since his father collapsed, so I'm guessing she's here to tell him how his father's doing; catch up on what they've been up too and,
Yeeeeeaaaahh that's exactly the news he needed to hear, not only is he spearheading a plan to kill about 80% of earth's population but now he just found out his dad's dead; this of course comes as a shock to him. Later on he asks Micchi about his feelings on this news, Micchi says he doesn't feel anything and walks off saying that he has more important concerns then the dead, damn, you cold dude. Takatora flashes back to when he first met Touka when the two were children. She was brought in by Amagi to be Takatora's servant; on her first day she baked Takatora an apple pie, even though he thought it tasted horrible he ate it nonetheless just for her company and the two had a little laugh about how bad it tasted, aaaaawwww he actually had a heart back then. Takatora brought it up during dinner that even though it tasted horrible it was one of the better meals he's ever had.
I know right he almost seems human, like someone who isn't trying to commit near genocide. Go figure.
Later that night Sid is attacked by the crack warping assailant; he pulls out his Cherry Energy Lockseed but the attacker is gone leaving behind some Helheim vines. The next day Yoko confirms that the M.O. of the attacker was the same as the person who attacked the Kurokages. Takatora, more annoyed then anything says that he hopes he's the next target so he can kick the culprit's ass and get it over with already. He thinks he's about to get his wish in the garage, but it just turns out to be Touka who offers him to stay at her place since he seems stressed out. Oh ho hoooo I see where this is going, she wants him to come over and have a piece of her pie.
What? At least it doesn't look burnt and it does look good.
However it still tastes horrible but he still eats it noting on how it brings him back to his childhood. Now I'm not really going to talk much about this sequence aside from showing that Takatora still has some semblance of humanity and may be leading up to his development in the series. The next day at Yggdrasil Yoko sees some Helheim vegetation and follows it to an electrical room where the lights go out and is attacked by a shadowy figure, the figure then transforms into a Rider before running off. Now that Yoko knows that she's dealing with an Armored Rider she pulls out her Peach Energy Lockseed and Genesis Driver and becomes Kamen Rider Marika, she engages the mystery rider before he teleports into another crack, but not before Marika manages to get off two shots into the crack before it closes.

Takatora brings in Ryoma Sengoku, the creator of the Sengoku Drivers, Genesis Drivers and the one responsible for the utilization of Lockseeds. Anyway he says that the attacker is an unknown Armored Rider and since Ryoma knows who got the Sengoku drivers he must know who has this belt, the problem is that if he did know he's not telling since Ryoma is about as ethical as Dr Suchong. Ryoma then remembers to give Takatora a prototype Lockseed he was working on to replace the Suika Lockseed that Micchi stole from him without his knowledge.
The Watermelon Lockseed, and you can just bet it's as safe as a pillow.
Takatora asks if he knows who has the belt but as I said Ryoma doesn't say who but does say that if it wasn't a beat rider, Takatora thinks it must be someone from Yggdrasil. Ryoma asks for more details about the Rider and when Takatora says he can make cracks without a lock vehicle Ryoma starts to worry. That night Takatora is looking through some research files at home to try and find a clue. He doesn't find anything until he discovers a hidden safe behind a painting and the files inside.
Oh that can't mean anything good.
And inside the files Takatora finds a picture of his father, the institute and pictures of children, some with circles on their picture; others with a red X instead and most damning of all a concept drawing of a prototype Sengoku driver. It's skipping ahead here but yeah it's obvious from what's seen here that Amagi was involved with experimenting on children trying to prefect the Sengoku driver. Yeah he was involved with some seriously bad Juju, but hey it's not like we've seen time and time again
that large
experiments on
was a

and insanely

to do


Why does this shit keep happening?! I mean those were only just examples off the top of my head. But those more then show that Child experimentation leads to horrible, horrible shit and those that survive more often then not end up as genocide seeking nut jobs with a higher kill count then Chin from Hong Kong 97. So as far as we can guess something undoubtedly horrible is just around the corner with this little revelation. We get some confirmation of that assumption as Micchi gets attacked by the Rider but he retreats as soon as Takatora shows up. He pulls out his Melon Energy Lockseed to transform but the Rider uses his control over Helheim to summon a crack and steal the Lockseed with vines.

Takatora decides to head to the abandoned institute to see if he can find any more clues and hopefully find the Rider. Now I would honestly question why he's going alone and not bringing say Yoko or Micchi or even some Kurokage troopers as back-up since we've seen this Rider taking these guys out when they were caught off guard or were unaware of him. But now they know and could easily out number him, sure even though Takatora lost his Energy Lockseed he could either still stick to Normal Zangetsu or hell since he owns the company that researches these things get another Energy Lockseed from Ryoma. Oh wait there goes me and my logic again. So yeah this genius head of a multinational corporation that owns Kamen Rider production tech goes inside the creepy abandoned research institute on his own to track down someone who has a Sengoku driver yet has easily outfought some of his most powerful comrades and stole your Energy Lockseed reducing him to his original form in case something goes fubar.

 So our oh so smart protagonist heads inside and finds that the place is trashed with very clear evidence of a struggle and yet no bodies. He goes into the basement and finds..... the laboratories where Yggdrasil conducted their experiments on the children.
And we know that nasty business was conducted here since it's an abandoned Shocker facility.
I joke but seriously it's the exact same damn location. I've seen waaaay too many of these shows. Also Toei, splurge a bit and get some new sets already jeez!!!
Takatora is of course appalled that not only were these atrocities perpetrated by Yggdrasil but that his father was the one who authorized it all. He notices an Inves hiding in a door but is attacked by the assassin before he can follow it. As the two struggle Takatora manages to pull off his mask revealing Touka. She explains that the purpose of the facility was to raise potential members of Yggdrasil, some as researchers, others as leaders and others as agents in the criminal underworld. The rest that didn't meet their expectations were used as Guinea pigs in Yggdrasil's Helheim research, that Inves seen earlier a result of that research.

She also reveals that she did in fact kill Takatora's father as part of her well deserved revenge plan, but that was just the tip of the iceberg as far as she's concerned, she won't stop until both Yggdrasil and the Kureshima name are reduced to a pile of ash under her boots. However she hates the fact that someone as nice as Takatora is Amagi's son but as long as his blood flows through Takatora's veins she will chase him down to the ends of the earth to kill him. So with her resolve hardened she pulls out her Sengoku driver and the Ringo Lockseed,
where she becomes Kamen Rider Idunn.
Hang on, she could never make her apple pies taste good, she wants to kill Takatora, her Rider Form is based on an Apple and her name is Idunn?!
He tries to reason with her but she's in full blown crazy revengeance mode and won't listen. The fight moves outside; Takatora saying that while he hates his father and knows all the horrible things he's done there will always be one thing that he taught him that he will never discard. Noblesse Oblige, and that no matter how many sins he must commit, no matter what trails comes his way he will hold on to that lesson and save humanity no matter what. With that he pulls out his Sengoku driver and the Prototype Watermelon Lockseed.
Becoming Kamen Rider Zangetsu Watermelon Arms.
The two Riders face off; Idunn using her ability to control Cracks to her advantage outmaneuvering Zangetsu.
There you big baby, you complained soooo much about the testing, how it hurt and hurt, and yet here you are, killing the only man you've loved. Congratulations, you monster. But hey, at least there will be pie in the end, pie that tastes like death. But you should know that already.
But Zangetsu has his own tricks and goes all Reb Brown on her ass by pulling out the Watermelon Gatling gun and chasing her off. Now we know why he doesn't use this in the series, while the Watermelon gun is incredibly powerful the kickback however is far to much, leaving Zangetsu vulnerable to attack. Since he can barely hold on using that weapon he has to make his next shot count or Idunn will kill him. Which he does, unloading a full assault on Idunn when she tries to do another sneak attack forcing her to power down and drop both her Ringo Lockseed as well as the Melon Energy Lockseed. Zangetsu also powers down due to the strain of the kickback from the Watermelon Gun, the two pick up their respective Lockseeds transforming back to Idunn and Zangetsu Shin.

Zangetsu Shin and Idunn hit each other with their respective Squash attacks, but since New Generation Riders are already stronger then Armored Riders, Zangetsu Shin manages to overpower Idunn forcing her to power down again. Zangetsu Shin however can't bring himself to deliver the killing stroke.
Unlike Dr Manhattan, he misses his swing as we cut to Touka making it back to the research lab where she starts to, for lack of a better term rot away, and that's when Ryoma shows up. It turns out that the Ringo Lockseed was created by him back when Amagi was in charge and just like the Yomotsuheguri Lockseed was considered a defective prototype. He only let her use the Lockseed just so he could use her to get more data on the thing. He further explains that the Ringo Lockseed allows people limited control over Helheim proving to him that the Golden Fruit of Helheim exists and now that she's no longer useful to him, he'll kill her just like she did with Amagi.
Nuttier then an almond joy, showing complete disregard for human life yeah it shows, especially with you.
Touka transforms into Idunn again but is too weak to defend herself so Ryoma transforms into Duke and guns her down like a thug. So the first segment ends with Takatora reflecting on what Kouta said and his time with Touka before walking into his home office.
Tune in next time where we take a look at Baron's part of this straight to video special. Hopefully with a bit of a more lighthearted note.

Kamen Rider is owned by Ishinomori Productions, Toei Productions, and Bandai.
Fullmetal Alchemist is owned by Studio Bones, Square-Enix, Funimation, Viz Media and Hiromu Arakawa.
Bioshock is owned by 2K Boston, 2K Australia, Take-Two Interactive, Ken Levine, Alyssa Finley and 2K Games.
Bioshock 2 is owned by Take2 interactive, 2K Marin, and 2K Australia.
Bioshock Infinite is owned by Ken Levine, Irrational Games, 2K Games amd Take-Two Interactive.
Kill La Kill is owned by Studio Trigger, Hiroyuki Imaishi, Kazuki Nakashima and Aniplex of America.
Mass Effect 2 is owned by Bioware and Electronic Arts.
Metal Gear Rising Revengance is owned by Platinum Studios, Konami and Kenji Saito.
Eureka Seven is owned by Studio Bones, Funimation and Tomoki Kyoda.
F.E.A.R is owned by Monolith Productions, Vivendi Universal and Craig Hubbard.
Monster is owned by Naoki Urasawa, Viz Media and Shogakukan.
Genocyber(OVA) is owned by Koichi Ohata, Shô Aikawa and Central Park Media.
Akira is owned by Katsuhiro Otomo, Tokyo Movie Shinsha, and Toho.
Persona 3 The Movie: No 2 Midsummer Knight's Dream is owned by Atlus, A-1 Pictures and Aniplex.
Persona 4 Arena Ultimax is owned by Atlus, Sega and Arc System Works.
Elfen Lied is owned by Studio Arms and ADV Films.
Command and Conquer: Red Alert 3 is owned by EA (Electronic Arts)
Watchmen (Film) is owned by Zach Snyder, Legendary Pictures, DC Comics, Lawrence Gordon Productions and Warner Brothers Entertainment.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Personal Post: Blip is dead, LONG LIVE CREATORS!!!

Please be sure to read, spread the links, re-tweet and follow me on Twitter @OnDavidsBrain!
Yep yesterday content creators for the video content site received a letter that stated in no uncertain terms that on August 20th 2015 Blip will be shut down for good and to back up their videos. I'm pretty sad about this whole thing, see back when I was in college I watched tons of reviews from people on That Guy With The Glasses whose videos were cataloged on Blip. Those reviews showed me some of the most insane, funny and mind opening material I've seen and if not for these people I might be here typing this article right now.

Apparently this shutdown was inevitable, and no; not since Blip and its owner Maker Studios were bought out by Disney last year, yeah apparently Blip were not exactly prone to playing ball with their content creators if these tweets from Nash from Radio Dead Air are true. Now I'm not saying he's lying but if what he's saying is true this could be the tip of the iceberg on just how bad this company has fallen since it opened shop in 2005. Here are just a few tweets of his recounting Blips practices.

First are the adds and mid rolls added in the middle of videos. The big kicker for me is that apparently Blip didn't even PAY most of the content creators for their work, yeah that right there makes me glad as gooseberry's that its pulling the plug now, so that now they won't have to deal with the legion of lawyers that should be knocking at their door for this crap. Hell I'll still be waiting for that to happen with a lawn-chair and popcorn. Apparently even if they were payed; it would be more then they've actually earned and wouldn't receive another paycheck until they earned back the difference. Now I'm no fancy schmancy lawyer type man but I do believe that my tired old brain can tell you all that this sure as cow shit doesn't sound the least bit legal.

I could go on but here are the rest of the links to the tweets for you to read for yourselves and see. All in all after learning about the practices that go on with these guys all I can do is just show this image that perfectly shows my disgust to the people who run blip and treated these people ( who I may remind you were most likely %80 of why Disney wanted it in the first place), ironically with a image from a Disney movie.
Just; perfect thank you Goofy.
I just, even Blips suggestion to their content creators about where to move their work is slimy. The letter suggests to sign up with Maker Studios as a new place to show their content when Noah Antwiler AKA Spoony pointed out this little factoid in Maker's Terms of Service Section 18. In layman's terms section 18 says that if you sign with them everything you make is theirs. No matter how you slice it Blip are the bad guys in this scenario, no two ways about it. I don't know about you guys but I don't exactly think that Blip should be allowed to get away with this whole damn thing Scott free with a simple closing, no I think this cause for a full legal course. But before anyone jumps the gun here let's look at this thing; on the one hand what these guys are doing could in fact be totally legal, but on the other hand just because something is legal doesn't make it right.

Besides what we should be concerned with for now isn't the legality of blips actions (though it shouldn't be outright ignored) no we need to focus on getting the critics back making videos and making actual money. Now I've heard some are considering going back to Youtube, others have already started backing up their content on Screenwave; dailymotion, Viemo, twitch and tons of other hosting sites I've probably never even heard of, so yeah blip goes down; the assholes who run blip lose their jobs (and the unfortunate people working directly under them) and Disney loses some depth in Scrooge mcduck's money vault big deal. Empires and businesses rise and fall all the time, things will work out as long as we look hard enough and explore all our options. Just next time when looking over documentation for joining sites, be sure to bring a lawyer.

A Goofy Movie is owned by Walt Disney Pictures, Disney MovieToons, and Buena Vista Pictures Distribution Inc. is owned by Maker Studios and the Walt Disney Company.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Movie Review: Terminator Genisys: Genisys does what Nindendon't!

Please be sure to read, comment, spread the links, re-tweet and follow me on Twitter @OnDavidsBrain! and support me on Patreon.
Ah, The Terminator, what can I say about this franchise that hasn't been said? It was the launching point for Director James Cameron and Actor Arnold Schwarzenegger. The first and second movies were major pioneers in the field of Practical and Special effects respectively and Terminator 2 Judgement day is the Highest grossing film of 1991; with a budget of 94 Million dollars it took in $519.8 Million dollars at the box office!
That being said however the sequels past Terminator 2 were nowhere near as successful or as good as the first two movies. Geneysis however is the first good new piece of Terminator media in a long time. While the movie itself is good the American sales however aren't so hot. But then again I'm not surprised with Genisys having one of the absolute worst trailers of all time. This trailer gives away a fair chunk of the twists in the movie. There are other factors that play into this however with Genisys competing alongside Jurassic World and Inside Out, a sequel to an equally beloved franchise and what many people are considering the best original Pixar movie since The Incredibles respectively it becomes far more clear why this sequel to a franchise with a fading reputation didn't do so well.

I will fully admit when I went to see this movie I was expecting it to suck, what with the disappointments that were Terminator 3 and Salvation. But call me surprised this movie was actually good, granted its even more confusing then the stories of Bioshock Infinite and Five Nights at Freddy's combined. But I just need to start thinking 4th dimensionally as well as see it a few more times so it'll make more sense the more times I hear the facts. Also since this is the first part of a planed trilogy logically the questions posed in this movie will be answered, and the international sales more then make up for the US release so here's hoping.

Now I don't want to give away any more spoilers then the trailer has already so I'll just leave it with this, go see Terminator Genisys while its still in theaters. Especially if your a fan of a certain show that features a man traveling through space and time himself with the help of one or two friends and a certain blue police box. Now next time I will finish my retrospective review of Persona 1 as well as start on something that I teased back in December of last year.

Terminator Genisys is owned by Skydance Production, Paramount Studios and Alan Taylor
Final Fantasy 13 is owned by Square-Enix, Motomu Toriyama and Yoshinore Kitase 
The Spoony Experiment is owned by Noah Antwilder.
"Make it Rain" is owned by Joseph Antonio Cartagena (Fat Joe), Dwayne Michael Carter Jr. (Lil Wayne) Scott Storch and Terror Squad.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Tokusatsu Review: Top 16 Main Kamen Rider Final Forms Part 2 (Spoilers)

Please be sure to read, comment, spread the links, re-tweet and follow me on Twitter @OnDavidsBrain! and support me on Patreon.

 Now it's been a while since the first part of this list. Coincidentally I started this list on the one year anniversary of this very blog! So yeah, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!
Yep I somehow managed to keep this thing going for more then a year now so yay me! Now on to the list; but first to recap the Final Forms that just didn't work for me then to the ones that start to get decent.
16 Hibiki Armed
15 Ryuki Survive
14 Agito Shining
13 Decade Complete
12 Stronger Charge Up
11 Fourze Cosmic States
10 Faiz Blaster
9 Wizard Infinity Style

 Caught up? Good moving on.
#8 Kabuto Hyper Form
When I was watching this series I had heard that many people consider this to be one of the best Rider series in the Heisei era, but I just thought it was at least B+ instead of A+. Mostly because I found the main Rider Souji Tendou to be even more of a pretentious jackass then Tsukasa and even more of a Gary Stu. I mean for at least the first half of the series the guy was always right, was a master chief, a Kamen Rider and always has a quote from his "grandma" that always fit the situation. For me at least I'm thankful the other Riders and the occasional guest characters showed up to put Tendou in his place from time to time.

However I have to give all the praise to his Hyper Form. Normally any of the ZECT Riders have the ability to go into super sonic speeds to match the Worms who can also access the same speeds, not faster then a bullet fired from a handgun but still faster then normal humans can perceive. However Hyper Form lets Kabuto go twice as fast; even allowing him to travel through time! So move over Superman, Flash and Sonic there's a new speedster in town. Not only can Kabuto kill about 50 Worms in the time it takes me to fart but he also gets an awesome weapon, the Perfect Zecter.

Not only is it a badass sword,
but it can also turn into a giant gun!
Though there is a catch, to use this little toy Kabuto needs to not only utilize his Zecter but also the Drake, TheBee and Sasword Zecters to make it work, so in theory in a large group battle three Riders need to get one super powered Rider. Also how this form comes around is more then a little convoluted. So apparently ZECT designed the thing but didn't want Souji to get his hands on it since he didn't work for them even though the guy has been kicking the asses of the Worms far better then their chosen Riders who in turn have basically gone nuts due to their personalities not accepting failures. So yeah they destroy the Hyper Zecter but apparently another one shows up from an alternate time line; something that surprised ZECT even though they built the damn thing and should know it's capabilities which was apparently brought into the past by a future Tendou even if it shouldn't exist in the future since it was just destroyed and, and.
Oh surprise surprise the episodes where Hyper From was introduced was written by Toshiki Inoue, that's why it doesn't make any sense. Moving on; I really do like the designs of the Riders in Kabuto, with a return to the insect motif with the appropriate mix of the high tech design which makes sense since they were created with advanced technology. The Masked and Rider forms were also a nice touch, the preliminary Masked form acting as a technological cocoon and as extra armor until the Rider decides to use Cast off to molt into their Rider Forms. Hyper form seems to be the best mix with more armor to protect Kabuto but at the cost of running speed with all of the extra armor on him. Speaking of there are more patches of Red in Hyper form's extra armor to give more contrast to the black under suit which does make this form more distinct. So yeah Hyper Form is a clear finish to a faster then light Rider.
#7 Blade King Form
I think that Blade is a pretty good series, though not because of the main character Kenzaki. I honestly thought the guy was one of the most generic, boring main Riders I've seen. He pretty much filled the checklist for the stereotypical stock standard Japanese protagonist. Dead Parents, check, willing to fight to save others, check, having no other defining personality traits then saving people, check. The guy just came off as bland and the show itself is only propelled by the other Riders.

That being said I do love me some King Form, aesthetically this form does live up to its name as it does resemble a suit of armor that a warrior King might wear into battle, also.

Yeah I really do love the contrast of blue, black and gold, each of these colors and their placement helps make the individual parts of the suit look distinct. King From also frees Blade of having to consciously pull Rouze cards out of a deck to utilize them as King Form allows Blade to access any of the Spade suit cards which are merged into his armor, giving Blade more time to concentrate on his opponent. His weapon; the King Rouzer is an awesome broadsword which just like King Form itself gives Blade more power at the cost of speed. Though in the case of the King Form armor it gives Blade much higher defenses at the cost of speed and maneuverability.

 King Form also has a much more serious drawback aside from combat and performance. See in order for the Riders in Blade to become Riders they have to merge with the DNA of the Category Ace Undead card to transform. Normally transforming into their standard Ace form presents very little problems aside from the safety of utilizing the Form being dependent on ones mental state. However the DNA fusion between Rider and Undead increases with every form that's accessed.

 In Jack form the fusion is between not only the Category Ace but also that of the Jack and Queen since the Queen is the Rouze card that triggers the fusion. Then we have King Form which requires the merging of all 13 cards of that suit to utilize and if one stays in King Form for too long the user is transformed into a Joker.
No not that Joker.

Nor this Joker ( though I will cover him later).

Thankfully not this Joker either.
But this Joker.
 Now I won't go into much detail as to why becoming the evil green bug monster is a bad thing I'll save that for when I talk about the true protagonist of Blade when I decide to talk about favorite Secondary Rider Final Forms. So for now King Form may give some King sized problems but I still love it.
#6 Ultimate Kuuga
Kuuga is unfortunately one of those series that I haven't seen yet. I really do want to see it however but I just want to wait until TV Nihon finishes doing the Subs. I know that Midnight Crew has finished their subs but I want to see it with the TV Nihon quality without having the spoilers that come with the Grongi (the monsters of Kuuga) translations. Now I have seen reviews of this show
and from what I've seen I can definitely tell why this show was the one that revived the franchise after years of dormancy and in fact six years before Dr Who came back on the small screen. Huh, odd coincidence. I might have to get on that topic sometime in the future.

 Sadly since Ultimate Form only shows up in the very last fight in the series I don't have a lot to talk about in terms of powers and skills, just that apparently Ultimate Form is the most physically powerful form in the franchise at the time of this review. Also since I actually want people to take a look at Kuuga I'm not going to talk about the storyline relevance of this form either because yeah it's a big one. That just leaves the design and it's beauty lies in its simplicity. No overly detailed armor, no ridiculous flourishes or anything like that, just a black suit with spiked shoulder pads and gold lining around the suit that sort of resemble blood veins. Ultimate Form is a form worthy of the greatest warrior.
#5 W/Double Cyclone Joker Xtreme
W is the first Rider of the Neo-Heisei era. I honestly have to admit this show is really good and the chemistry of Shotaro and Philip not only sell it but is the direct basis and stability of W and Cyclone Joker Xtreme form definitely helps to drive the character development that these two sleuths go through. This form taps into the power of the true Gaia Memory which as the name implies is essentially the brain of the planet itself; all the events and concepts that have been witnessed and conceived by those who live on Earth are stored inside of the true Gaia Memory; thus the greatest strength of Xtreme isn't in power but knowledge.

Since these two are tapping directly into the True Gaia Memory and Philip (who in this form has perfectly fused with Shotaro) was essentially reborn by the True Gaia Memory W can perfectly analyze the composition of any Dopant and destroy their Gaia Memory with their Prism Break Maximum Drive. As for this form design I love the symmetrical color balance with the colors of Cyclone and Joker with a nice addition of Silver right down the middle and the X's on both of the ankles, the helmet and half X's split between the shoulder to act as shoulder pads. As for the story line significance I feel that's something that needs to be seen rather then told. What else can be said about this form rather then
yeah that works.
#4 OOO Putotyra Combo
OOO is a fun series, with the right amount of comedy to help draw viewers in, great action scenes to keep butts glued to their seats waiting to see what combo OOO's will use and darkness to keep the stakes poignant. That underlying darkness is exemplified in OOO's unwilling Final Form, the Putotyra combo which draws power from the antithesis of desire and seek the destruction of everything, oblivion. Like the rest of the Core Metals the purple cores draws power from animals and just like how the purple metals seek oblivion the animals that the purple core medals are based on are extinct. Which were mostly dinosaurs and mythological animals since one time Dr Maki, the main bad who also had half of the purple cores in him created a Unicorn monster; but really they only did the mythological monster thing only once so I personally think they should have just stuck to Dinosaurs for the purple cores and made mythological animals another set but that's just me.

Anyway these cores forcefully entering Eiji finally allowed us to get more into his back story about how he was helping a village in Africa when the village got destroyed by a local militia; everyone in the village was slaughtered, he got held hostage by the enemy militia and the only reason his family paid the ransom was to use Eiji's tragedy to gain support for his father's political platform. Now if I were in Eiji's position I would have beat my parents until they were a pile of raw hamburger meat for using me like that but in Eiji's case it caused him to lose any trace of selfish desire, which while it allowed him to use the power of OOO without going nuts it's also what caused the Purple Medals to go into him in the first place. Aside from forcefully tuning into this form whenever they feel like it the purple medals can also cause Eiji to go completely berserk causing him to attack friend and foe alike. When these demonic Plinko chips aren't doing that they're also slowly turning Eiji into a Greeed that is essentially a demonic version of Barney.
Pants to be darkened!
Aside from turning Eiji into a demonic purple Apocalymon let's discus what good things he gets with this form. As formed by a lack of desire the Purple Medals are anathema to the normal core medals and can thus destroy them and thus can kill the other Greeed. The three pieces of the combo itself gives Eiji powers in each of the three pieces of his armor. The Pteranodon head not only lets him fly but also allows him to generate freezing winds like Superman's ice breath, his Triceratops torso shoulder tusks can also extend and contract according to Eiji's will allowing him to impale enemies at a great distance.

Finally the Tyrannosaurus legs not only give Eiji incredible kicking power but he can also form a giant tail to smack around enemies. He also gets the Metagabryu a bazooka/axe modeled after a T-Rex head that eats Cell Medals to blow enemies to pieces either by chopping it in half or by blasting it until it's a pile of medals or chunky salsa depending on who he's fighting. Just remember kids, mess with Putotyra combo and you'll be the one ending up extinct.
#3 Den-O Liner Form
 There's an old saying; you never forget your first. You never forget your first kiss, whovians never forget their first doctor and Rider Fans never forget their first Rider, and Den-O is the very first Rider whose series I watched from start to finish. Yeah yeah yeah people either love this series the way it is or despise it due to Toei taking its success and stretching it out even longer then the Clone Saga. But I still have a soft spot for this series, Ryotaro and the arc of his character development culminated in this form.

See up until the point this was introduced Ryotaro was a wimp who constantly needed help from his friends the four Imagins ( the monsters of the series) known as the Taros to possess him to become the various forms of Den-O to help fight the evil Imagins. However due to the plot point known as the Junction point (which is the person who's existence determines whether the current future or the future that was lost thus creating the Imagins is the true future) begins to manifest he loses the ability to be in sync with the Taros while in the past thus the four create for Ryotaro the DenKamen sword which allows him to fight on his own in Liner Form. Before he would need the help of the Imagins to save the day and now he has to train even harder to make up for his own timid nature to insure the safety of his friends, family and his time line. This form is the culmination of Ryotaro's development from a wimp to a true noble warrior who can stand on equal ground alongside the Taros to protect those dear to him.

Enough mushy stuff time to discuss Liner Forms powers, while he is the fastest of Den-O's forms it is unfortunately the weakest due to Ryotaro's timid nature and without the direct support of the Taros. However the DenKamen more then makes up for it as it allows him to access the fighting styles of the other Taros such as Kintaro's power backed attacks, Ryutaro's projectiles and Urataro's long range capabilities. When he uses the power of one of the four forms he's covered in a Aura shaped like the respective Taro's personal Train called the Aura Liner to further protect him and enhance his attacks. He finally then rushes his opponent with his signature finisher the Train slash which combines the Aura Liners of all four Taro's to create the Den Liner Aura Liner and finish off his opponent with one fast and powerful slash.

Design wise Liner Form is modeled after the King Liner and is one of the more symmetrical Final Forms in the franchise and I love it. I love the head lights on the chest plate that resemble large yellow eyes and the nice balance of red, black and white on the suit. The helmet may have the default red eyes of Sword Form but is flourished with the blue, yellow and purple spikes along the side of the helmet to allude to Den-Os other forms. Although the thing on top of the helmet looks kind of silly but it still adds to the train theme of Den-O so it works. So while Den-O is my first Final form ever it is unfortunately a few minutes late so I can't make it #1 since there are two better forms from far better Riders.

#2 Gaim Kiwami Arms
Yes despite Gaim being my current favorite Kamen Rider Series; Kiwami Arms only gets the #2 spot.  Now don't worry I'll explain why. This form might not have won hearts at first because it came after the far better looking Kachidoki arms form, yet this is apparently the true form of that awesomeness so it's cool. Unlike other forms which gain their own weapons this form's true strength lies in its versatility as it can not only use the weapons of all of the other Armored Riders, the Sonic Arrow of the New Genesis Riders, and the absolute beauty that is the DJ gun from Kachidoki arms but also use more then one while using the Kiwami Lockseed. So if he needed to block attacks while attacking from long range, just two flips of the Kiwami seed and boom Melon Defender in one hand and the Budou Ryuhou in the other. Or he can summon the Mango Punisher and the Donkachi for two different types of blunt force on his enemies heads when he uses their heads like a drum set.

However like Blade's King form using this Form for too long and too often transforms the user into an Overlord leaving behind someone who only looks human. However Kouta doesn't care what becomes of him so long as he gains the power to save his town, the world and stop the cycle of the Helheim Forrest. But unlike King Form which turns the user into a monster being an Overlord comes with great benefits, you gain control over the plants of Helheim, regeneration and can summon cracks in reality creating access points to the real world and Helheim. So aside from only being able to gain sustenance from helheim fruit which would normally turn people into Inves and losing your humanity that sounds like a sweet deal.

As for the design I still love it I'm a big sucker for capes and the addition of one on Kiwami arms helps build this form into one of the coolest looking Final forms. Unlike previous Final Forms which had a mixture of other colors Kiwami has a primarily white color scheme with various black spots to prevent the suit from just looking like a big white blob, this especially helps the shoulder pads; which with the black stripes make it look like half's of a sunflower seed. The Shogun design really looks good especially with the Gaim Logo emblazoned on his helmet, the bits of armor held over from Kachidoki arms recolored white and that the visor is a rainbow combined with the breastplate decorated with several of the fruits the lockseeds are based on really help to highlight the versatility that Kiwami arms is capable of. So instead of having only one weapon Kiwami arms has many different ways it can make its enemies into a bloody fruit salad.
#1 Kiva Emperor Form
My flat out favorite final form. Yet ironically from a series helmed by Inoue, maybe by this point Inoue finally figured out that his BS was getting people angry and finally stopped, or maybe I should give this series a second look to make sure my love for Kiva still holds up. But for right now I love Emperor Form! See this, among all the other Final Forms on this list is the one I want to turn into the most, this form made vampires cool again after several years of living in the glitter filed horror unleashed by Stephenie Meyer and her horrible Twilight franchise.

This for me is the perfect culmination of what a final form should be. This design looks absolutely badass. Like I said with Gaim, I love capes on these forms, but what make Emperor Forms cape better then Kiwami Arms is that this cape is long enough to give Kiva a royal, regal look but short enough so that it's not impractical in combat. The colors work perfectly; as a form called Emperor the mixture of Red and Gold could not have been better. In various cultures around the world Red and Gold are considered if not royal then noble and important colors, from Christianity attributing Red to the blood of Christ and a color often worn by Cardinals and Popes wearing Red shoes, Egypt where their Pharaohs were buried in a golden sarcophagus, to China where one of the creatures associated with the four directions Zhu Que is the Vermilion Bird but I could go on.

Anyway; story wise this form shows when Wataru becomes consumed with rage after his girlfriend Mio was nearly killed by a Fangire (the monsters in Kiva's series) this awakened Tatsulot a small dragon like creature sealed in Castle Doran who was drawn to Wataru's Fangire blood thus awakening Wataru's full power as Emperor Form. After that point as Wataru begins fighting his half brother Tiaga the current leader of the Fangires; he starts to use Emperor Form more as his default form as the two and their ideologies conflict, as for the rest I don't want to spoil so check out Kiva to see the final arc of Wataru's character development and how he starts as a shut in to a warrior worthy of being called a true king.

 As for the capabilities of the form itself Kiva's strength in this form is insane, his final attack the Full Moon break can kick with the force of 150 tons! He also gets the sword that was once wielded by the first King of the Fangires, the Zanvat sword a golden broadsword that while powerful is unfortunately too powerful as the sword has the potential to fully awaken Wataru's Fangire blood causing him to go completely nuts just like the Putotyra Combo. That (without too much spoilers) is Kiva Emperor, currently my #1 Favorite Final Form, hail to the King Baby!

I've told you all what I think of the Final Forms, now I want to know what yours are. Let me know in the comments if you agree with this list or if you think that your favorite form got gibed. Let me know, share the links and I'll see you next time. Trust me, I'll be back.

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