For decades, Japan has dominated the henshin superhero genre with Kamen Rider,Super Sentai, and anime such as Sailor Moon. Henshin is basically the act of transformation into a costume, usually through a glorious sequence with sparkly lights and cool effects. Americans became hooked on the sensation when the Power Rangers franchise adapted from Super Sentai in the 1990's. Two decades later, Power Rangers is still a mega-hit in the United States and throughout the world.
It looks like Korea is finally jumping in with their own original series piloted by Power Rangers visionary, Director and Producer Koichi Sakamoto. For 20 years, Sakamoto guided the Power Rangers franchise through every aspect of production. After leaving the franchise, he would also go on to work on the Super Sentai series Kyoryuger (which is amazing if I may add).
Now Sakamoto will get an opportunity to create his own henshin legacy from scratch with "Gunblade." At this years Licensing Expo, Gunblade Culture Industry SPC released an eight minute pilot showcasing the new series which is sure to attract plenty of attention from Power Rangers and Iron Man fans.
According to the press release:
Produced by Gunblade Culture Industry SPC, a South Korean-based production company and a subsidiary of A mate Inc., “GUNBLADE” is the tale of the extraordinary “Gunblade Team,” a six-member special missions unit, assembled to protect and defend humankind against the evil Dr. Dexter and his super computer, “Olympus.” Seeking assistance to carry out his diabolical plan to destroy the Earth, Dr. Dexter resurrects an ancient destructive clan, “Gothic,” who had been sealed away for evildoing. Now with the threat of humanity becoming extinct, the Gunblade Team must stop Dr. Dexter from destroying the Earth. Equipped with the “GB Drive,” a special smart phone type device, GUNBLADE members can use its applications to transmit high-tech weaponry, assist in a variety of attack skills, garner protection by an impenetrable shield and even transform into a special armored suit.
The pilot video showcases a man named Jay who would go on to transform into green Iron Man looking armor to fight minions belonging to an organization called "Gothic." His morpher is a pull down HUD tablet that also is reminiscent of the technology from the Iron Man films. By using a "change app" he is able to henshin into his armor. The inside of his helmet once again also looks like it was designed by Tony Stark with HUD's in a uniformed oval shape.
This is a pretty exciting project if you ask me. As a huge Sentai fan and comic geek, it's awesome to imagine a live-action Iron Man series on television every single week. The series will debut in South Korea in March of 2015 before coming to the United States in 2016.
With these henshin hero shows, one thing is for sure. The productions are not afraid to spend money. With a $20 million budget, you can be sure there will be some mindfully designed suits and weapons that will end up as awesome toys.
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