Sabu and Ichi’s Detective Tales (1968) – Episode 21

In this episode, Sabu & Ichi take on a gang that is smuggling opium from Nagasaki, and using it to run an opium den in Edo. The gang all wear masks, but Sabu slashes one of their masks open and catches a glimpse of one of them…if only he could remember why the man looks so familiar…?

Get it from Nyaa, Mega or UsersCloud.

This is a joint project with Hokuto no Gun, check out their website here.

Ametuchi recently pointed out how Sabu and Ichi was made smack in the middle of the 60s protest years, and often talks about social issues under the guise of an old timey story. Opiate addiction was a big problem back then, and of course these days it has returned with a vengeance thanks to Purdue Pharma and their aggressive, deceptive marketing of OxyContin (there’s a very good expose on this in the LA Times, which you can read here.)

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GeGeGe no Kitaro (1996) – Episode 04

vlcsnap-2017-01-01-02h23m49s443.pngWrong answer, creepy old dude…

Children from a local school have been disappearing, and Nezumi Otoko is brought in for questioning when he is spotted lurking outside the school.

Get it from Nyaa, Mega, or Userscloud.

This is a joint project with Hokuto no Gun. Check out their site here.

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Sabu and Ichi’s Detective Tales (1968) – Episode 20

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Over the course of a lifetime, Ichi has killed and injured a lot of people with his sword-cane (although the “They were all bad” defense from True Lies actually does apply in his case). Now someone wants to avenge one of those deaths, and in defending himself Ichi ends up blinding his would be assassin…

Get it from Nyaa, Mega or Userscloud.

And don’t forget to check out Hokuto no Gun’s site here.

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Sabu and Ichi’s Detective Tales (1968) – Episode 19

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Merry Christmas, and best wishes of the season to people of all creeds and nations. Here’s a festive Sabu & Ichi episode to celebrate with. While it’s set in in early February rather than late December, this story does actually take place during a festival season, and is suitably heartwarming.

Get it from Nyaa, Mega or Userscloud.

Sabu & Ichi is another joint project with Hokuto no Gun, be sure to check out their site here.

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Golden Bat (1966) – live action movie (with Sonny Chiba)

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December 21, 1966…a day that will live in…er, memory of a seriously fun movie released half a century ago. Filmed in widescreen Toeiscope, this low-budget gem manages to cram approximately 2.4 metric tons of fun into a 73 minute bag. If some drive-in movie distributor like New World Pictures or AIP had bought the rights to this back in the day, it could have become a mainstay on those weekend SF and horror movie showcases like Ghoulardi or Svengoolie (or the local equivalent from wherever you happen to live).

Get the soft subtitled mkv from Nyaa or Mega.

(The soft subtitled version is slightly different from the version I released last night, nothing major. The CRC for the corrected version is 66B5A59D).

Or get the hard subtitled mp4 from Nyaa or Mega.

This was a joint project with Love & Care, check out their site for Shotaro Ishinomori’s JAKQ (a longtime favorite of mine) as well as other cool live-action shows like Turboranger. Angel from L&C contacted me earlier this year and asked if I could help them find a raw source for this movie, so they could subtitle it for the 50th anniversary. I remembered that there was a custom subtitled DVD of the film floating around the trading circuit about seven or eight years ago, so I e-mailed various other subtitlers and video traders to see if I knew anyone who had it in their collection. Big thanks to Kaiju from Hi no Tori Fansubs for hooking us up. I’ve done some joint projects with them before, like Dororo (since cancelled after the official streaming and DVD releases), and the P Productions failed pilots for Jaguarman and Leopardman. Check their site out if you like insanely weird stuff like Fireman, Thundermask, Tetsujin Tiger Seven, and of course Ishinomori’s classic Robot Detective.

The script from the custom DVD sub was a little rough around the edges in parts, kinda literal with some rather awkward phrasing. Angel and I gave it a thorough grammatical cleansing; Shourikan provided translation QC, and translated a few missing lines as well. It was lots of fun working with Love & Care, hopefully we will have the opportunity to do more joint projects together in the future.

Shonen King wrote a great review of this movie on his Black Sun blog, you can read that here.

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GeGeGe no Kitaro (1996) – Episode 03

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Here’s the next episode in this joint production with Hokuto no Gun. This features one of my all-time favorite Kitaro villains: Yasha, the soul-stealing Yokai from ancient China.

Get 199os Yasha from Nyaa or Mega.

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For the sake of comparison, here’s the original version from the first series in 1968. Still the creepiest in my opinion, though I like them all.

Get 1960s Yasha from Nyaa or Mega.

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Here’s an old VHS recording of the 1986 version of the Yasha story, which was shown with English subtitles on a Hawaiian pay-cable station called Nippon Golden Network. I got this tape in a trade with Laurine in the early 1990s, back when I was sending her tapes of UK shows like The Avengers and Danger Man/Secret Agent which her friend Hideaki in Japan wanted, in trade for recording off-air Japanese broadcasts of anime and tokusatsu shows .

Nippon Golden Network used to show quite a bit of subtitled anime, such as Hokuto no Ken, Dr. Slump, Dragonball, Galaxy Express 999, Chibi Maruko-chan, and of course the third series of GeGeGe no Kitaro. The subtitles on NGN were often pretty rudimentary even by the sloppy standards standards of subtitled anime on American TV (there’s a great Let’s Anime article on this subject here), but their subtitles for Kitaro are better than average as far as NGN subs go.

Get 1980s Yasha from Nyaa or Mega.

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The episode featuring Yasha in the 2007 series is unique because it actually appears to be a sequel to the original 1968 episode, rather than a completely different story. This was subtitled by Order of Zeronos and SkewedS Translations (the group that subtitled all of first season Sukeban Deka).

Get 2000s Yasha from Nyaa or Mega.

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In 2008, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the original TV series, Toei made Hakaba Kitaro (Kitaro of the Graveyard). This late night anime series sticks much closer to the dark and gritty style of Shigeru Mizuki’s original manga, and re-unites several of the voice actors from the 1968 series. And of course Yasha makes an appearance in one episode, squaring off against Dracula the Fourth. This one was subtitled by Umai.

Get your Hakaba Yasha from Nyaa or Mega.

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Ninja Hattori-kun (1966) – Episode 01

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This live-action TV series is the first of many adaptations of the popular manga series by Moto Abiko, one half of the legendary gag manga duo known as Fujiko Fujio. The 1980s anime series was a monster hit in Japan, and the most recent (2013-2015) anime incarnation was quite successful as well.

Hattori-kun is a ninja of the Iga Ninpo School who has just completed his training, and is sent off to wander Japan honing his skills. He is befriended by Kenichi Mistuba, a suburban middle school boy, and ends up moving in with his family. This is definitely a fish out of water story. Hattori seems to have spent most of his life sheltered away in ninja training, and isn’t at all familiar with cars, televisions, or other aspects of modern life.

Produced by Toei Television Productions and NET (later TV Asahi), this offbeat mix of ninja action and family sitcom is off the charts weird. In order to match the look of the main character’s manga design, they’ve used a child actor (actually two identical twin child actors) wearing a mask, with an adult actor providing the voice.

Get it from Nyaa or Mega.

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