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Ultra Seven: The Complete Series

4.5 out of 5 stars 86 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

THE EARTH IS IN DANGER! Even now, fiendish hands are stretching out from the distant stars to seize the world. From their massive underground complex near Mt. Fuji, the Ultra Guard, an elite unit of the Terrestrial Defense Force, equipped with a squadron of Ultra Hawks, stands vigilant as our decisive first-line to combat the myriad of alien aggressors, who threaten the very existence of our planet. But, unbeknownst to his fellow teammates, Dan Moroboshi, is secretly an extraterrestrial aiding them in their fight to preserve the future of humanity, considered the 7th member of the Ultra Guard :better known as Ultra Seven!

Produced by the creative team behind Ultraman, Ultra Seven is the third entry in the Ultra Series, and is arguably the best of the long-running franchise, with its emphasis on science fiction and themes touching on subjects ranging from the cruelty of war to social and racial injustices in the grand tradition of Star Trek and The Outer Limits. Plus, Ultra Seven features the colossal monsters and spectacular visual effects viewers expect from the men who brought Godzilla to life! For the first time on home video, complete and uncut, Shout! Factory s complete box set of Ultra Seven is a must-have!

Japanese special effects legend Eiji Tsuburaya's giddy and surreal '60s-era science fiction television series Ultraseven is rescued from its long tenure in grey-market sources with this six-disc set. Produced in 1967, Ultraseven was the third in a lengthy and complicated library of live-action and animated television programs, feature films, and specials, all largely concerning the Ultra family of alien superheroes who defend Earth from an exhaustive array of giant monsters; here, the variation on the central theme is the origin story detailed in the first episode, where Ultra Seven, an alien crusader from the same planet as his predecessor, Ultraman, rescues an ailing mountain climber and assumes his form in order to join the Ultra Guard, a team of six (including actors Iyoshi Ishii and Bin Furuya from the original Ultraman series) guarding the Earth from extraterrestrial threat. When called into action each episode by the arrival of one or more of Tsuburaya's outlandish and energetic monster creations, Ultra Seven adopts his giant costumed form to unleash an array of spectacular weapons with appropriately explosive results. As with other titles in the Ultra franchise, said monster showdowns remain the show's key appeal, as well as Ultra Seven's lack of the time constraint that hampered the powers of his Ultra brethren (thus allowing for longer and more elaborate fights), which helped to make him one of the most popular figures in Ultra history, as evidenced by his reappearance in several subsequent spinoff series. Ultraseven also does commendable work for attempting to place the monster rumble sequences within the framework of more detailed stories than are usually seen in the tokusatsu (live-action science fiction) genre.

Unlike Ultraman, Ultraseven went largely unseen by stateside audiences, save for Hawaii residents who saw it in limited syndication during the 1970s. TNT finally picked up the series for broadcast during the early morning hours in the early 1990s, but this version featured a decidedly tongue-in-cheek dub by the Canadian production company Cinar, which transformed the program into broad camp. Ultraseven was later swept up into a contentious legal battle between Tsuburaya Productions and Chaiyo, a Thai company that laid a questionable claim on six of the Ultra series. The latter entity has provided the source material for this release, which looks fine if not perfect--a respectable situation, given that the series was filmed in 16mm (a difficult format to remaster) and the DVD elements come from a third-party source. Audio is the original Japanese track with optional subtitles, which may come as a disappointment for those who fondly remember the Hawaiian or Cinar dubs. And, as Internet sources have widely reported, this is not the "complete" series--missing from the set is "From Another Planet with Love," which featured a blood-consuming alien whose disfigured appearance was unfortunately compared in press material to survivors of the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombings. Tsuburaya subsequently pulled the episode from broadcast and home video releases, though it aired in Hawaii and on TNT. Its absence, while unfortunate, should not detract from viewers' enjoyment of the set, which also features a typically thorough booklet of liner notes by Japanese genre expert August Ragone. --Paul Gaita

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Shoji Nakayama, Koji Mortsugu, Yuriko Hishima, Sandayu Dokumamushi, Shinsuke Achija
  • Directors: Akio Jossoji, Kazuho Mitsuta, Hajime Tsuburaya
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Animated, Box set, Color, NTSC
  • Language: Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 6
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Shout! Factory
  • DVD Release Date: December 11, 2012
  • Run Time: 1140 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (86 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0096W46VW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #25,689 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Ultra Seven: The Complete Series" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Kevin Andrusia on September 14, 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I was amazed to get Amazon's notification of the Ultraseven series coming to DVD. From my youth, I knew of Ultraman and only Ultraman. It would be years into adulthood before I knew there were any other series like this, much less finding out Ultraman was ALSO a sequel of its own from "Ultra Q" (aside from Johnny Sokko and the various Godzilla adventures that were shown endlessly in US syndication). It was my understanding that the original Ultraman series became too expensive to produce, thus it was only in production for one year. Evidently, with series still in production as of the date of this review, that may not have been the case.

I first became aware of "Ultra Seven" when it showed up in weekday morning syndication on the US TNT network mid-90's. They would run two half-hour episodes, which were HEAVILY edited and almost comedic in their English translations (dubbed in the mid-80's by Canadian outfit CINAR). Visually, the series looked a lot like the original Ultraman....but the tone took a different direction, bringing in heavier moral and ethical scenarios (even in the limp Canadian dubs). The creatures also became more outrageous (whereas many of Ultraman's foes appeared to be based on actual mutated animals). The series eventually shifted to weekend overnights, usually late Saturday night or early Sunday morning, for an hour...unless a movie ran late. TNT was good about posting schedules and episode titles.

I got ahold of an original DVD set of Ultraseven a few years ago. At the time, the going price was $500. You read that right. Five HUNDRED. Boxed set of 12 discs, with subtitles in other Asian languages, no English. It is still available here on Amazon, I think a new set is going for $1500 (add one THOUSAND to what I just quoted!
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Unless you grew up in Hawaii, in the ‘70s, you probably discovered Ultra 7 in the ‘90s on TNT like I did. By the time I saw this particular production I was already in my late 20s, which was perfect due to the comedic treatment that the production team chose for this version of the show.

This DVD set is more pure in treatment to the original production. It is spoken in the original Japanese with English subtitles.

Sometimes, the subtitles are a bit inaccurate and the audio fades out in several occasions. However, this is not really that big of a deal unless you can actually follow the Japanese audio.

Ultra 7 is one of the most popular series of the “Ultraman” shows. In the US, we only ever had the first Ultraman series aside from the Hawaiian version of Ultra 7 that was cited above.

Ultra 7 was the last of the ‘60s productions; for this reason, it still has cool atmosphere, music, sound effects, cars, gadgets and uniforms. The productions of the ‘70s lost that feel and just don’t look as good.

Ultra 7 could have been my favorite series but it falls short on monster design; also, it seems that they didn’t take certain things as seriously in this show. The aliens have comical sounding voices and some of the concepts, even names of planets and aliens are a bit cheesy. In this sense, I still think the first Ultraman is the best that there ever was. It was more sober and the creatures were more convincing.

In other ways, Ultra 7 was more sophisticated, even to the point of being over-produced. I think the studios knew that they were going to market this series to death and therefore the production was sensationalized. The scenery and filming are the best of any Ultraman series.
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I have only ever had the chance to watch the English dubbed version of Ultraseven when it first appeared on TNT many years ago, but I still have very fond memories of Ultraseven.

With all of the legal turmoil that Tsubaraya Productions had gone through, it seemed as though there wasn't any hope of seeing any Region 1 releases of anything created by the studio. A few years back there was the original Ultraman release by BCI, but they apparently didn't even get the original master negatives, but a second generation copies from the Thai company Chaiyo, the very company in legal battle with Tsubaraya over who had the official rights to the Ultraman property.

I didn't think I would ever live to see anything officially released here in the states. A few years ago there were the releases of Iron King and Super Robot Red Baron (which I love and still have in my collection), but once BCI Eclipse went under, all hope for any further releases of anythign else were dashed... until the announcement of this release from the super awesome company Shout Factory.

I remember that this series had more darker themes and more grown up and intelligent stories, which I love. I believe around the time of this season's release in Japan, there was a positive comparison to the original Star Trek series, with regards to its intelligent approach to science fiction, along with the well rounded characters and the approach of the storytelling.

While Ultraman Hayata was the first Ultraman series and laid the groundwork for the Ultra franchise itself, Ultraseven is usually the series people tend to remember with fondness, admiration and respect.
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