All 7 of Rainbowman's seven "Dashes" are seen during the opening credits, as they are matted against the elements they are based on (Dash 1 is moon, Dash 2 is fire, Dash 3 is water, Dash 4 is wood, Dash 5 is gold, Dash 6 is earth, and the main Dash, 7, is the sun; These are also the days of the week in Japan, from Monday to Sunday, respectively). See more »
Viewed today, a INCREDIBLE show that isn't really for kids
This show, when I viewed it as a child back in 1971,I didn't find it interesting, as it didn't have monsters, but there was many dramatical moments that stuck with me, that I didn't forget. When this show was released on LD in Japan in 1994, I bought it, and I cannot believe this was sold as a kid's show! It plays much better as a adult serial,as it holds up much better than as I remembered it as a child (sort of like as a child I found ULTRA-7 boring, but not other Ultraman, but now that I am older,I appreciate ULTRA-7's stories ALOT more.Very "mature" and Serious themes/tone).
The basic premise was this young wrestler goes to India, studies from a guru to be the best so he can make enough money for his crippled sister to have surgery on her legs, and becomes a hero who has 7 different powers with 7 different suits (the moon=shrinking, brown=earth, red=fire, blue=water, green=forest/tree, gold=lightning/brightness, white=default) as he then gets mixed up with and discovers a sinister plot from the evil Die Die gang to kill all of Japan. Apperently these guys are foreigners, hinting they might be of other Asian race, as they keep refering to the japanese people in racist slangs (and this passed the Tv censors!)and some just look japanese for they went through this machine that turns Americans into Japanese!
Whats more incredible is in the era of masked superheros like KAMEN RIDER, Rainbowman was fighting fellow humans. Also the show was structured like a serial, with each storyline ending in one season (13 episodes). Just to build up the introduction on Rainbowman and his training to be Rainbowman, it took 3 episodes, as it took episode 4 just to introduce Mister K and his organization! The structure of each episode was like a serial, no real ending until the season was over, very much in tune with other shows created by Yasunori Kawauchi like GEKKO KAMEN, HARIMAO, CONDORMAN, and DIAMOND EYE.
And of course just like the above mentioned shows, the show was amazingly politically incorrect! Show had tons of racist slur against the japanese people, as well as the heavy handed message by Yasunori Kawauchi, just like he did with his other show, of the theme of the evil foreigners who comes to Japan to destroy Japan, but the Japanese people's heart will fight until death(he is a very right wing man). The plans of the Die Die Gang's way of destroying Japan was very politically incorrect as well. First chapter they used a new soft drink, Cat's Eye, which was a poisonous juice that turns one insane, as they were turning japanese people into crazed maniacs, then on 2nd season they created a phony cult that gives away 100's of thousands of yen, which was actually counterfeit, to ruin the japanese economy, the 3rd season had them having DAC (death Attack Commandos), mercenaries from South Africa (how fitting) as they disguised as Japanese citizens, killing tourist and foreigners, making Japan a unsafe place for foreign vistiors to come, thus ruining their reputation, and 4th season had them turning innocent people into cyborgs on killing spree.
Oh there was some what of "kaijin" like villians, in the form of the Professional Assassin team, but they were humans/hired killers trying to assassinate Rainbowman. They all wore disgusting halloween masks, as fudorah with his poison (he controlled Spiders and Snakes), Goluma the human pump (he breath fire and acid from his mask),Genobird who had gernade bombs on his cape, Herodonia the 3rd, who controled Hedron which can turn people into fossil, Skullman and Iguana, who practiced voodoo, and I can never forget Otsuki Wolf as Elebander, a human spark man! (he was also good as J gordon/salamander in Condorman) Of course Rainbowman beat them all, all using logic (Galma was killed when Rainbowman threw a arrow at his pump, which caused the acid to leak all over him, Jenobird was killed for rainbowman blew up his cape, etc).
Anyway, looking at it today this is one of the most enjoyable kids show from japan from that era, that thanks to a serious writing that is now appealing is most appreciated by adults who kind of ignored it back then. Iknew alot of kids ins chool ignored it back in 1972, but I know they all like the show much better than the shows that just dont hold up today (Ultraman Leo is one). Still me and my friends couldn't believe the Tv network let Yasunori Kawauchi get by with so much Racist slang and anti-american/pro old time japan messages. It IS incredible to see it today realizing what he was trying to preach to the youth of then.Even the shows theme song has "heavy" messages written in them!
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