News from Kochi-power Research Institute (Part 29)
〇 On a calm day in September, Professor Kochitarō , the director of Kochi-power Research Institute, and his assistant, the robot Kochijirō , were relaxing at the institute.
Professor, I received a letter from “Pandai," (1) a major toy manufacturer.
What the hell? Did I win some kind of campaign prize? Read on.
"Dear Sir or Madam, Your institute has been taunting the scale models of our main products, such as “Bidō-senshi Pandam“ (2) and “Ora, Battler Pandine," (3) through the blog “Kochi-ism," and has seriously undermined the value of these products. Such interference with our business activities cannot be overlooked, and we demand an immediate suspension of your institute’s activities, including the closure of the blog, and an apology. If there is no improvement after one week from the date of this warning, we will take the necessary measures to forcibly terminate the activities of your institute."
This is a declaration of war, isn’t it? What should I do in reply?
Tell them, “You idiot."
“You idiot!" (4)
(1) The name is very similar to “Bandai."
(2) “Bidō-senshi" refers to a warrior who does not move much, and its counterpart “Kidō-senshi" refers to, you guessed it, the “Mobile Suit." So, “Bidō-senshi Pandam" sounds a lot like “Mobile Suit Gundam."
(3) The “Ora" in “Ora, Battler Pandine" is the phrase that “Son Goku" uses to call himself in “Dragon Ball Z," and the whole thing sounds a lot like “Aura Battler Dunbine."
(4) This is the same phrase used by Captain Okita in the first episode of “Space Battleship Yamato" when he asked his men to reply to Garmillas' request for surrender.
〇 2 days later
Professor, this time the letter is from “Nyantendo," (5) a major game software maker.
"Dear Sir or Madam, You have caused us a great deal of damage by spreading false information about the harmful effects of our flagship product, video game software, on young people through your blog, “Kochi-ism." Such interference with our business activities cannot be overlooked…"
The following is the same text. What should I do in reply?
Tell them, “Aho (Fool)." (6)
Not “Baka (You idiot)."?
"Nyantendo" is a Kansai-based company, so “Aho" is fine.
"Uh, this is Kochi-power Research Institute. Aho. Please respond."
(5) The name is very similar to “Nintendo." In addition, “Nyan" is an infant word for cat.
(6) In Japan, on the other hand, if you say “Aho (Fool)" to someone from the Kanto region or “Baka (Idiot)" to someone from the Kansai region, they will be very offended.
〇 And another 2 days later
Professor, this time from “Tsuburana (7) Productions."
Damn it, read it.
"Dear Sir or Madam, We regret to inform you that your institute has made a mockery of our company’s TV program “Ultrajin“ (8) series through a blog called “Kochi-ism" and has smeared the face of our heroes…"
What should I do in reply?
Since the institute is in trouble, you should reply “On, iyā~“ (9) in imitation of “Ultrajin A." (10)
(7) The name is very similar to “Tsuburaya." In addition, “Tsuburana" refers to the round and cute shape.
(8) The word “jin" means people. In other words, “Ultrajin" means “Ultra people."
(9) Ultraman Ace often utters “On, iyā~" when he suffers from an enemy attack.
(10) The “A" in “Ultrajin A" is not “Ace," it’s just “A."
〇 Then one day, a week after the first warning.
Professor, we have a problem! A giant robot army that seems to have been dispatched by Pandai is surrounding our institute. The first one seems to be the “Mega Size Model 1/1 Scale Unicorn Pandam" for sure. (11)
The amount of model runners after assembly must have been amazing!
It’s not the case to be saying something dumb. We’ve received a message from the pilot, “Reiji Tamuro." (12)
The name sounds like a comedian. (13) Open the channel!
You have five minutes to raise a white flag of surrender on the roof of the institute. Or I will shoot… I will shoot… I will shoot! (14)
Is the enemy general suffering from a mental illness? In preparation for such an eventuality, a giant robot for reception, “Mensetsu Kyojin Oiden," (15) has been placed at the entrance of the institute. Activate the power of the “OIDE“ (16) and shoot the Wave Gun! Strike First!
(Male chorus, O~ID~EN~♪)
(11) The one being sold by Bandai is the “Mega Scale Model 1/48 Unicorn Gundam," they don’t sell the 1/1!
(12) Ray Amuro, not Reiji Tamuro, is the main character of “Mobile Suit Gundam."
(13) Indeed, there is a comedian named Kenji Tamura. His sunglasses and bangs are distinctive (look closely at Reiji Tamuro's paintings!)
(14) A line from Amuro in “Mobile Suit Gundam."
(15) “Mensetsu Kyojin Oiden" sounds similar to “Densetsu Kyojin Ideon," the Japanese title of “Space Runaway Ideon," but “Mensetsu" means “interview" and “Oide" means “Welcome," so “Mensetsu Kyojin Oiden" is the appropriate name for a reception desk. The original “Densetsu" means “legendary," and “Kyojin" means a “giant god."
(16) In “Space Runaway Ideon," the power of “IDE" is activated instead of “OIDE."
Professor, Oiden is out of control. Oh, he made
a “Miraculous Coalescence" (17) with “Dai-X (cross)" (18) from “X-Bomby" (19) that we had in the warehouse.
Oiden is not a Pandai product, (20) but it is also directed by “Yoshiyuke Tomino." (21) That’s why Oiden love the red robot. (22) Since you seem to have no intention of surrendering, we will attack.
〇 Pandai’s army of “Bidō-senshi" began to attack at once, and the institute was immediately engulfed in flames.
Damn it, I’m going to have to mobilize all the robots I have. Forth gate open! (23)
〇 From the hangar, the “Missile-carrying Robo," (24) the “Tigers Robo," (25) and other robots from “Mitori Shokai" (26) dispatched!
Oh, these robots! Both armors and powers are different from Zaku! (27)
Haha, the “Mitori" robots are “more than the price" (28) and performs much better than the Pandai robots. Now, launch the missile!
Professor, “Missile-carrying Robo," as the name implies, only has missiles and can’t fire them.
What, then, about the “Tigers robot?"
Professor, that’s not a “Mitori" robot, but made by “Yōderu." (29) In baseball, it’s like being a second-string player for “Hanshin Tigers." (30)
"Yōderu" sounds like an advertisement for a pachinko parlor! If they don’t have weapons, they’ll have to fight with their fists.
〇 The fierce battle between the robots began. Because the “Bidō-senshi" team was unable to move around much as the name implies, the Kochi-power Research Institute army, with its battery power and superior mobility, fought hard, but the Pandai army was also well hit by the beam rifle of Tamuro, who was a “Mu-type," (31) and the two armies went back and forth in a stalemate. Just then, that man came onto the battlefield!
(17) See Tommy's TV commercial in Kochi-ism Vol.17.
(18) It’s “Dai-Cross," not “Dai-X."
(19) “Bomby," not “Bomber," is a youth word meaning poor in Japan.
(20) The plastic models of “Space Runaway Ideon" were sold not by Bandai but by Aoshima.
(21) The famous one is not “Yoshiyuke" but “Yoshiyuki." In addition, “Yoshiyuke" means “Okay, go!"
(22) It is thought to refer to the fact that the “Red Comet (Char’s exclusive Zaku)" and the bright red “Ideon" appear in the works of Yoshiyuki Tomino.
(23) The announcement that is made in the hangar when the superweapons are launched in “Ultraseven."
(24) The original is “Missile Robo."
(25) The original is “Tiger Robo."
(26) The original is, of course, “Midori Shokai."
(27) A line from Amuro in “Mobile Suit Gundam."
(28) The catchphrase “more than the price" comes from “Nitori," a furniture and interior goods retailer.
(29) The original is a company called “Yodel." In addition, since “yōderu" means “to get out a lot" in the Kansai region, it is an appropriate advertising phrase for pachinko parlors.
(30) If you are a reader of this blog, you probably know that the professor is a fan of the Hanshin Tigers.
(31) The original is “Newtype." However, the “mu" in “Mu-type" means “mutant," so it is not a strange coinage.
Leave it to me. (32) (he seems breathing with difficulty.)
What’s this voice? (33) Aren’t you “Hidebu Gō“ (34) from “Return of Ultrajin“? (35)
I knew you would come. (36)
Thank you for featuring me because of the 50th anniversary. I came to support you without telling “Tsuburana Productions." (he seems still breathing with difficulty.)
〇 Gō raised his hands and transformed into “Ultrajin Jackie“! (37)
It’s so cool! I knew I could count on you, Mr. Gō!
However, no matter how much it was to protect against the new coronavirus, the mask was too big, (38) wasn’t it? He looked like he was in pain.
A robot or two, what is it, hmph! (39)
〇 Jackie’s “Sberium ray" (40) blew the robots to smithereens. However, Jackie did not know that it was mostly the robot army belonging to the professor’s institute that died. Shuwa! Jackie flew towards the sky with an unconcerned look on her face.
Our army is wiped out…
(changing his attitude with no scruple) Hidebu’s bastard… I don’t have a choice, let’s mobilize the final weapon.
〇 The new robot appeared from the institute’s hangar and proceeded towards the Pandai army. It had no weapons in its hands. But for some reason, the frightened Tamuro …
(32) Gō’s line from “Return of Ultraman" episode 2
(33) Gō’s line in the final episode of “Return of Ultraman“
(34) It’s a name similar to “Hideki Gō." “Hidebu" is the final cry of an enemy named “Heart" as he dies in “Fist of the North Star."
(35) Perhaps it imitated “Return of Ultraman."
(36) Captain Kato's line in the 2nd episode of “Return of Ultraman“
(37) The name sounds a lot like “Ultraman Jack."
(38) The mask that “Hidebu Gō" wears is similar to the one that Ashuran put on “Hideki Gō" in “Ultraman Leo" in the past.
(39) Gō’s line from “Return of Ultraman" episode 2
There’s no doubt about it… it’s him… he’s here!
〇 Boom! The robot exploded in a huge explosion, blowing up the Pandai army. The robot was the professor’s trump card, the “Blasting Robot“! (41)
Is this… what war is all about? (42)
〇 Tamuro is dead. Just when it looked like the Institute had won with their desperate attack!
Professor, we’re in trouble. This time, the Nyantendo army and the Tsuburana Pro army have attacked. Nantendo’s army is a horde of Lario's, (43) and Tsuburana Pro’s army also has many Ultrajins in tow.
〇 “Lego~!“ (44) “Tigasaki~!" (45) “Dynam~!" (46) “Ga,iya~!" (47) and “Cosmoni.~!" (48) The Ultrajins transformed one after another screaming weirdly, and flew towards the institute.
Their plan seems to be that the horde of Lario’s break into the institute while the Ultrajins are attacking it from the outside.
Professor, how can I help you?
We can’t let them get their hands on our 70s materials in the institute. I will return to the institute and activate the explosive device. I will blew up the water pipe that connects the institute to Lake Yamanaka, submerging the institute in a massive amount of water. With this operation, we’ll be able to destroy all the intruders.
However, if you did that, you would be dead.
Don’t worry about me. I have cancer and won’t live long anyway. In the meantime, Jirō, please stop the Ultrajins from entering the institute.
How can I fight the Ultrajins with this small body?
As a matter of fact, embedded in your body is the “Jet Jiger Unit," (49) a device to make you huge, I developed. I’m counting on you, Jirō.
〇 The professor pressed the switch that was hidden in the body of Jirō and ran back to the institute. Jirō groaned, and then he became 40 meters tall!
⇐Watch the video.
Professor, please be safe.
〇 Jirō rushed toward the Ultrajins. What will be the fate of the two of them?
(To be continued. Next is the final installment.)
(40) A line from Amuro in “Mobile Suit Gundam."
(41) The model would be “Explo Robot."
(42) A line from Amuro in “Mobile Suit Gundam."
(43) Probably imitating Mario from “Super Mario Bros." In Japan, there is a word called “Rariru," which refers to the inability to speak due to drug addiction, so if “Lario" is what the name implies, he is very dangerous!
(44) It’s similar to the shout, “Leo~" when transforming to Ultraman Leo.
(45) I guess he just wanted to say the name of the place, “Chigasaki," using the shout, “Tiga~" when transforming to Ultraman Tiga.
(46) It’s probably just a rephrasing of “Dyna~," the shout when transforming to Ultraman Dyna, into “Dynam," the name of a pachinko chain store.
(47) “Ga,iya~" means “I hate moths~" and it imitates the cry “Gaia~" when transforming to Ultraman Gaia.
(48) The wife of Taiyō Sugiura, the star of “Ultraman Cosmos," was in an idol unit called “Minimoni." That’s why the shout “Cosmos～" when transforming to Ultraman Cosmos has been changed to “Cosmoni.(Cosmo + moni.)～“, i think.
(49) The original is “Jet Jaguar." “Jiger" is the name of the monster that fought Gamera.
※The title of this project, “When Professor Dies! The Institute Submerges!“, comes from the first episode of “Ultraman Leo," “When Seven Dies! Tokyo Submerges!“
“Beetle II" corps
I’d like to introduce something I’ve never had a chance to cover before, Midori Shokai’s SF plastic model “Beetle II" corps.
(1) “Space Tank Beetle II" (Midori Shokai)
According to the familiar “Character Age" Vol. 2 (Gakken), the first edition was released in 1966 and the list price was 300 yen, but the correct price was 200 yen according to the flyer at that time. Once I bought the 5th edition (list price 300 yen) released in 1974. There is a plastic model called “Space Tank Super Beetle" that was released in 1967, but for some reason, the previously released “Beetle II" is considered to be the “second generation" of the model. The name was chosen through a public contest.
This plastic model is four-wheel drive, with the front wheels rotating up and down on a crankshaft and the rear wheels rotating normally on a straight shaft. In addition, it boasts a variety of gimmicks, including automatic rotation of the radar antenna, lighting of infrared lamps (using a bean ball instead of a miniature light bulb), and manual firing of two missiles.
The one I have was originally a junked product obtained in 2006, which was lacking an antenna and missiles. I finished it by diverting parts from the “Spin Z" introduced in (2). Because stickers were already lost, so I scanned ones of “Spin Z" and made the mark of the beetle and the logo of “MIDORI." Furthermore, I made the “BEETLE-II" logo as I saw fit. I didn’t know the condition of the gears and the bean ball for the junk, but I was lucky to find out that they were alive and well when I got them.
(2) Chibikoro SF series “Spin Z" (Midori Shokai)
This is a resale product of the “Beetle II," but the power unit has been changed to the pull-back mainspring that is common to the Chibikoro series. It is two-wheel drive with the rear wheels, and the front wheels do not even turn, let alone the crank. It was released in 1976, and the list price was 300 yen. Midori Shokai went out of business in 1978, but I do not know where the mold that transitioned from “Beetle II" to “Spin Z" is now.
(3) Instant SF series “Baby Beetle“
It is often described as a snap kit for younger students, but it is as well proportioned as the higher-end models. There are three other types: “Baby Echo," “Baby Vanguard," and “Baby Moguras." The first edition was released in 1967, priced at 50 yen and was using flywheels, but this was changed to non-powered in the Chibikoro 4-pack (300 yen). The one in my possession is for overseas, but I have also seen a different product made in Hong Kong at auction.
(4) Space missile tank “Beetle II" (Academy)
This is a Korean-made “Beetle II," which went on sale around 1980. There is a 3000 notation on the box, so the price may have been 3,000 won (about 300 yen). The box art was an imitation of the original, and I thought the molds were identical, but in fact they were not. I admire the fact that even the drive unit is completely copied. It used to be traded at a lower price than the original “Beetle II," but in recent years the price has been on the rise. The price of “Vanguard" has skyrocketed to the point where even the Academy’s products are unaffordable, so I think it’s best to consider purchasing “Beetle II" as soon as possible.
Kochi-Grand sumo tournament with soft vinyl monster dolls (4/4)
Finally, here are the results of the final day of the tournament. The winner was Terochilus, Yokozuna of the east. His record is 13 wins, 1 loss, and 1 tie. He defeated Prizuma, Yokozuna of the west, in the regular match and didn’t need a championship match. The defeated Prizuma chased Terochilus with 9 straight wins from the 6th day, but ran out of steam in the end. His record was 11 wins, 3 losses, and 1 tie.
In the matchup between Ozeki, Kingsaurus III of the east won, bringing his record to a respectable 11 wins, 1 loss, and 3 ties. The defeated Gokinezura of the west had a lively first half of the tournament, but could only win one match from the 9th day, finishing with 8 wins, 3 losses, and 4 ties. The results of the other wrestlers above the Komusubi level were disappointing, with all but the east Sekiwake Muruchi failing to reach 8 wins. The west Sekiwake, Twintail, had more losses than wins.
Next, let’s talk about the three awards. The only two Makuuchi to beat Yokozuna, Sasahiler and Alien Nackle, both had more loses than wins, so the outstanding performance award was not given to them. The fighting spirit award went to west Maegashira Yadokarin, who had the best record in the Hiramaku division with 9 wins and 6 losses, and the technic award went to east Sekiwake Muruchi, who had won 8 straight bouts in the first half of the tournament and once stood alone at the top. The east Maegashira 5th wrestler, Billgamo, who had fought very well with 7 wins and 7 losses until the 14th day, lost at the final day and missed the fighting spirit award.