Wow, Maser Patrol has been running for five whole years as of today! Over the years things have branched from a simple news aggregate (meant to kill time during long grad school experiment runs) into several articles, reviews, translations, presentations, and podcasts. So, I want to take a moment to thank and acknowledge everyone for how things have gone so far.
In true Super Sentai fashion, here are the contributing MaserRangers, complete with profile pictures that I hastily scrawled onto post-it notes during my lunch break:
Yours truly, I’m chief admin and compose the bulk of the posts. It feels weird thanking myself, so let’s move on.
My lovely partner, anime enthusiast, and professional translator. You’ve likely seen her work on more high-profile places such as Anime News Network, but she’s instrumental to things running here, both by providing full translations (the most popular things ever posted here, btw) and reporting about neat events in Japan. She’s also on the podcast on occasion, though time zone differences make that difficult!
A toy collector and ardent mecha fan, I had a feeling that Andy and I would get along when, on the first day we met he asked if I was “at all familiar with the Godzilla franchise” (I’m not sure that I ever technically answered that, but Amanda did break down laughing). A core contributor since day one, he’s on more of the podcasts than not.
The other most familiar voice on the podcast (and, due to a history in radio, the best at it), Josh claims to be “Captain Casual”, despite an encyclopedic knowledge of video games, anime soundtracks, the works of Rumiko Takahashi, and a familiarity with Gainax’s filmography to the point of being described as “an Evangelion fan’s worst nightmare.” We first met when I was recruiting for our college’s anime club and wound up discussing Yu Yu Hakusho for two straight hours on the spot.
An accomplished anime convention panelist and professional librarian, Alan has a knack for pulling up obscure bits of trivia for all things geeky. You can hear him on the Garo podcast episode, and he’s a frequent sounding board and news contributor. His wife Nissa also helped with the Star Wars article.
The rare contributor that’s not from my college anime club, I met Benji through my work anime club. An enthusiast of obscure niche (weird) manga, trashy OVAs, and strange memes, I’ve been indoctrinating him to Japanese cinema. You can hear him on the Nobuhiko Obayashi podcast episode.
Justin Mullis has written for G-Fan, LovecrafteZine, The Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts, Giant Creatures in Our World, The Retro-Futurism of Cuteness, Henshin Justice Unlimited, and more; he even taught a college class on King Kong! Despite being a proper professional geek scholar, he approached me wanting to contribute to this humble blog, and since has given us great articles on Kong and Shigeru Mizuki, and appeared on mic to discuss Jellfish Eyes, Shin Godzilla, Skull Island, and our maniacally eight-hour-long Lovecraft in Japan podcast episode. You can check out more from him at Man Creates Dinosaurs.
- Special crossover: Kaiju Transmissions Podcast
If you’re not listening to the Kaiju Transmissions Podcast, you should be, since it broadens tokusatsu horizons from the traditional Godzilla-centric springboard. Matt and Byrd have been great supporters of Maser Patrol, with numerous on-air shoutouts, but what was especially cool was their gift of text interviews with Kiyotaka Taguchi, Michiru Oshima, and Kazuhiro Nakagawa from G-Fest, when their audio equipment wasn’t working. Kudos!(It was especially cool when Taguchi himself reposted the link!)
I’d also like to extend thanks to everyone who’s shared, commented, corrected, or dropped a kind word over the years. A few exceptional standouts (with apologies in advance to anyone I missed!) include: Aaltomies, Alex Rushdy, Astounding Beyond Belief, August Ragone, Ayame Chiba, Bombastic Headgear, Ed Holland & Monster Attack Team, Eric Hurd, Felipe Onodera, G-Fest, Goro, Henning Strauss, Henshin Justice Unlimited, Jason Brown, John Lemay, John Summers, Kaijucast, Kevin Clark, Mark Jaramillo, Matt Ferrett, Matt Frank (I can always tell when he shares something, since traffic spikes tenfold), Nicholas Driscoll, Raf Enshohma, Ryan Clark, Scott Hamilton, Sentaison, Stan Hyde, Ted Johnson, and Tony Isabella. Y’all are awesome!
On top of that, I’m grateful to the panel programming folks at G-Fest, Anime Central, Anime Milwaukee, NatsuCon, and Kawa Kon, for platforms to babble at a live audience.
It’s been a blast of five years, and I’m looking forward to seeing what the next five will bring!
…speaking of which…
Some may have noticed that there has been a decrease in posts in recent months. That’s partially due to Amanda and myself getting new jobs, but also due to a secret project that was seeded at G-Fest this year. A number of people said “you should write a book”, and, coupled with the frustration that there’s so much more commentary out there about Mothra and Godzilla than there is about, say, The Bermuda Depths and King of Snake, it was suggested that it be about off-the-beaten-path kaiju eiga.
Ever susceptible to peer pressure, I got started writing reviews of several non-Godzilla, non-Gamera, non-Kong flicks out there, for an indy print project I’m tentatively calling Kaiju for Hipsters: 101 “Alternative” Giant Monster Movies. The goal is to have something ready to bring to the next G-Fest, but I’m only about halfway there so far – if it’s not done by next year’s G-Fest, it should be by *some* year’s G-Fest.
Alright, with all that out of the way, I promise the next post will have real content in it. Here’s to another five exciting, anime/manga/tokusatsu-filled years!