Wednesday, March 18, 2015


I've mentioned the anime Betterman a couple of times (check the tag for a couple other posts with rather ludicrous use of capitalization in their titles).

The thing about Betterman is that it's trying to be an action series and a horror series at the same time. So the heavily armed protagonists (who either have modest-sized giant robots or can turn into hulking superpowered monsters) have some capability to fight back against the horror-themed enemies, quite a bit more than in most guns-blazing action/horror hybrid series (see zombie movies, most of the Aliens franchise, etc. etc. etc.). But the enemies they fight are stronger than those in such media, being larger, faster, stronger, and tougher, such that we are led to infer that normal means of assault-guns, bombs, etc.-aren't very effective. The solutions they use are quirky single-target things that only work against one specific target after analyzing said target.

Such as an engineered toxin tailored specifically against one single creature, such as this echinoderm-inspired giant monster that lives on the sea bed (Betterman kills the whole thing, which is at least a couple of acres across, and it for some reason then floats to the surface).

The only effective attacks any of the protagonists have work like this, including the titular Betterman; only minor enemies can be defeated any other way.

Sometimes it gets pretty ridiculous; it's one of the series' more curious traits that occasionally veers towards being a flaw.

I do tend to forgive it, though, since while it's far from the best execution of it, it's definitely a variation of the basic formula pioneered by Ultraman back in the day, and the original Ultraman is in actual fact one of my favorite pseudo-scifi series of all time, regardless of all its goofy antiquated flaws.

Heck, it's basically exactly Ultraman if one takes the fact that Betterman's a mysterious, fairly inhuman protector with tremendous powers into account.

-Signing off.

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