Gojira (1958) reminds me of a Power Rangers standoff: an ethnography account from an Aussie Millennial

My cultural background mostly consists of classic Aussie barbecues, backyard cricket (although we played out the front) and watching the footy on the TV. My family is seven generations Australian but the origin of my surname is German and the origin of my mother’s maiden name is Irish. I grew up watching TV and playing video games, so from an early age and due to being born in the millennium generation, I have always been accustom to technology and entertainment.

I had many influences showing on TV when I was young; shows including Captain Planet, Power Rangers, Pokemon and I remember watching a few episodes of Sailor Moon too. Although, my cousins took on Pokemon faster than ever I did. They knew the whole collection, whereas I only knew the main Pokemon and stuck to my favourites like Pikachu, Charmander and Squirtle. I was more into Power Rangers and wanted more than anything to be a ranger myself.

I always thought Power Rangers had been made in Japan as they prominently showcase karate and other various mixed martial arts. However, it wasn’t until I started studying Digital Asia at university that I found out that I was pretty much, completely wrong. The Power Rangers series in the 1990’s was called Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, an American TV show based on a Japanese television show called Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger. The similarities of the respective shows are uncanny, with only slight differences to the storylines. The action scenes however are very much the same as Power Rangers used featured film stock from Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger. With careful editing and new footage from the Power Ranger scenes, this transformed into a new television show.

Towards the end of each episode of Power Rangers there is a big battle between the Power Rangers’ Megazord and an enlarged monster/villain in either a city setting or in large landscape. Thanks to this part in the show, when I saw Godzilla King of Monsters (1956), this instantly came to mind. Sadly I wasn’t able to maintain interest with the movie as much as I had hoped, but I enjoyed watching it on a historical standpoint. I don’t have a big background in watching classic movies nor in Japanese influenced films but I have studied film and can see that Godzilla is impressive for its time and in its genre with its ability in editing, directing and originality.

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