Post Reply Ultraman - Where to start?
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Posted 7/4/16 , edited 7/4/16
I've just got a Crunchyroll premium account, to watch the new Berserk. I might as well try some other shows to get my moneys worth and Ultraman is something that has always interested me. I'm a big Godzilla fan and Ultraman looks along the same Kaiju lines.

My question is where should I start? Does it matter which series I watch? Is there continuation or are they all self contained?
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Posted 7/4/16
If you can... and you can actually get it pretty darn cheap... pick up the original series of Ultraman (1966), that's the start point (well, Ultra Q before that, but that's before the big Red and Silver hero appears).

Ultraman Mebius ties in to the original series, with additional monsters from the other Ultra shows too (and ones original to Mebius).
Mebius is a good series IMHO.

You'll find they don't all connect, some are stand-alone versions of Ultraman (Ultraman Gaia and Ultraman Nexus for example).
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Posted 7/5/16
honestly, i think you could start with any series. there isn't a lot of continuity. every now and then a monster from a previous series will show up. sometimes an older Ultra.
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Posted 7/10/16
I found this online, the original series of Ultraman

http://www.ironfisttv.com/TV-Series/Ultraman-Subtitled/Ultra-Operation-No-1/watch.html

It appears legit. I understand that there is a long running legal issue regarding the first 6 Ultra shows (until Ultraman Leo), but you'd have to google that up more...
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Posted 7/10/16
Someone stole my Special Science Search Party t-shirt I bought in Japan off my drying line
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Posted 10/30/16 , edited 10/30/16
I know this is an old thread, but I'll answer for anyone else who is wondering about this. Ultraman shows sometimes have references back to earlier series or guest appearances from older Ultras, but each series mostly tells its own self-contained story, with only a couple of exceptions. This makes the choice of where to enter the franchise more a question of what you want from it because, despite the almost unerringly similar formula throughout, the tone and focus of each series varies a surprising amount.

If you're not yet sold on the franchise, and want to start with the best story, go for Nexus. This was part of Tsuburaya's experiment in recalibrating the franchise for older audiences, and resulted in a dark, gripping and emotional series. Be aware that it's not representative of the franchise as a whole though, as other series tend to be lighter and more episodic.

If you want to see the best effects, action scenes, and some of the most entertaining stand-alone episodes the franchise has to offer, try Ultraman X. The only caveat here is that it assumes some familiarity with other Ultra series (particularly Ginga, which is unfortunately one of the weakest series), but you can get around that by just googling "ultraman spark dolls" for some explanation on why people are talking to action figures. X is also one of the biggest offenders for trying to sell you toys, but its quality is otherwise so high that you won't care.

If you want something more old-school, I'd recommend Ultraman 80. It's not the oldest Ultra series on Crunchyroll, but it's a lot better than the rather depressing and jarring tone of Leo, has superior production values, and one of the most likeable protagonists. 80 is pretty under-rated, IMO.

Of the other shows on CR, the currently running Orb has a shaky first few episodes, but rapidly improves, and as of now (episode 17) I'd rate it among the best entries in the franchise. It's also one that doesn't require any previous familiarity with Ultraman. You can't go wrong with Gaia or Mebius, which are both good fun and solid shows. Max takes more of a 'greatest hits' approach, and is generally well regarded, but didn't grab me personally. Basically, just don't start with Ultraman Ginga and you should be okay.
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