Monday, August 20, 2012

PMC3: Chat with Guest of Honor Nonaka Tsuyoshi

UPDATED 8/23/12
Pictures thanks to Raz of Rangerboard.
   On Sunday at the PMC, I was looking for a friend and bumped into Nonaka Tsuyoshi smoking a cigarette. At the show, I was not able to speak to him because he was always drawing and had a long line. Even though he speaks little English and I speak even less Japanese (Jay of MorphinLegacy would tell you when I said 'Hello' instead of 'Thank you.'), we were able to communicate. He was impressed with my Sentai knowledge. He says he has been working with Bandai for over 20 years and he was plucked from product development school. 

I had lots of questions about color choices Toei and Bandai had. He said that Silver and Gold are always popular for additional Rangers because they are well.. 'shiny.' He said how toy sales and ratings go up for Silver or Gold Rangers in Sentai. But in 2007 for Gekiranger, Bandai wanted something new. Paraphrasing what he said, he said that they were like... 'we need a new color! What color would be good? Which haven't we done? Oh okay purple!' He says GekiViolet and GekiChopper did not do well. But BeetBuster and StagBuster of Go-Busters are doing extremely well. They have gone through the roof, big success. I was concerned if they would do it again (Red, Yellow, Blue, Silver and Gold mix) and he said they (Bandai or Toei I guess) would not do it again because it would not be as successful every year. Also I think kids would get bored and it wouldn't have the same impact. I told him I loved purple and wondering if they would do it again. He said he wasn't sure, he was hesitant to say 'maybe.' 

So I asked him about the color changes in Gokaiger. He said 'it was crazy.' He was not involved as he is just the designer but he said it caused a frenzy in Japan. From how he said things and what he was saying, I got the impression we might not get a  male pink, female black or green anytime soon in a regular show. I think the thinking behind it is that if you are going to have Red, Blue and Green, they have to be male, or if it is Red, Blue and Black or Red, Green, and Yellow. That if a woman was green or blue, it would leave less for the guys. But they can always use Silver, Gold, Crimson, Cyan, etc. I did not ask him about this aspect. And I forgot to ask about the Spirit Rangers. But as for Gokaiger, he was impressed I knew about the all-pink change in Gokaiger vs Gavan and he laughed when I said 'short time.' So I assume it was indeed on purpose the scene was short because of the stigma behind men in pink. We did not discuss it because he had to go and same in the last conversation we had.

I asked him about the mega mode for Samurai and why Gold had no blue like his ShinkenGold suit when in Mega. He said it had to do with team thinking and color coordinating. That what looked good in an overall scheme for the six. Also he (or some other higher ups) confirmed to some other fans that Gold Shogun would not appear on the show. As for Shogun mode, I asked about the Kanji on their heads. As Red Shogun's symbol looks like the Kanji for flame. I spoke to him through an interpreter late in the day inside the convention center and I don't think they understood me well. He said it was meant to 'imitate' Kanji but didn't really mean anything. I knew this. I asked if the others meant anything. They said Yellow did but nothing major, a very rare minor used Kanji but I didn't really understand what they said it meant or if they even said it. I said how I was surprised the girls had Shogun, he said it was the Saban company's request for the whole team to have Shogun mode.

He said he was no one special, he was surprised he had fans. I explained (best I could) that the 80's brought so much merchandising, TV shows with toy lines, and mass producing, so we kids of the 80's and 90's saw many many toys and looked at these toys all the time and how could we not fall in love with the designs? I mentioned Transformers and Go-Bots, he nodded. He asked what I thought about the differences between Transformers and Super Sentai. I told him even kids can tell the difference and told him about my nephew. That the Transformers are way more complicated than the Super Robos and Super Sentai Super Robos are more brighter and colorful. He said 'Zord,' and I asked him what they called the zords in Japan, he said 'Robo.' I asked "Even the animals? Like Lion? Tiger? Wolf?" He said yes. 

No comments: