Director Takashi Miike bats another one out of the park. This time it's a comic-book spoof/tribute entitled Zebraman. It starts off as a endearing little tale of an embittered public school teacher with a bullied son, a slutty daughter and a cheating wife who goes all Walter Mitty/Otaku and dons his home-made Zebraman costume while watching the dorky Kamen Rider-esque TV show alone in his room and mimes the power moves of his hero. Somehow, when on his way to impress the handicapable son of the school nurse, he fights off a serial killer with actual super-powers. As you'd expect from any Miike movie, it just gets more bizarre from there. It's got slimy-Flubber aliens, crab-men, MIBs, possessed children, green babies, a flying pegasus-zebra and other zany zebra zen moments.

It stars 哀川 翔 (Sho Aikawa) as the title character and his nebbish alter-ego. He does a great job in the roles and easily carries the movie. Surprisingly, even the kids weren't too annoying!

Sendai's own 鈴木京香 (Kyoko Suzuki) played the love interest (also Zebra-Nurse) but she isn't very proud of it since I noticed on her website that she's kept it off her resume and she didn't show up in the sequel.

Here's a trailer...

This is my favourite scene with the classic theme song in the background:

Over the end credits, you'll hear The High-lows with 日曜日よりの使者 (Nichiyoubi Yori no Shisha)

Of course it spawned a sequel and I'll have to track that down. I doubt if I'll be able to get it for the price of this movie. I paid only 200¥ for it at Tsutaya!

Here's a teaser for ゼブラーマン -ゼブラシティの逆襲 Zebraman Vengeful Zebra City or Zebura Shiti no gyakushû...

The lead actress is 仲 里依紗 (Riisa Naka) and here she is performing the theme:

Hopefully, more Miike tomorrow!

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