Formerly known as "Cruzers in Korea"

Friday, December 12, 2008

Star Blazers

Friday, December 12, 2008
I'm not sure how many people besides my siblings and I will appreciate this blog entry.  Growing up as a kid, a very fond memory of mine was dismounting the crowded school bus and rushing home to watch the best Japanese animated show ever - Star Blazers!  A valiant group of space heroes called the Star Force, led by Captain Avatar, would trek across the galaxy aboard the space battleship Argo trying to save Mother Earth from destruction.  Other cartoons during that time paled in comparison.  A continuous cliffhanger type series just wasn't the norm for cartoons that day.  The plot and character development was great.  So when I saw this juicy morsel of a model in the window of a toy store in Hong Kong during Thanksgiving break, I freaked out:

This is the battleship Argo from the Star Blazers series.  Anyone familiar with the show can tell you about it's bread and butter weapon - the wave motion gun.  In the heat of battle, when all seemed lost, Captain Avatar would call upon this mighty weapon.  I can hear the sound effects of the gun right now, a slow crescendo of muffled mechanical noise building up, second by second, into a frenzied overload.  Imagine the sound of when grownups talk on a Charlie Brown Peanuts cartoon, getting louder and louder - wah, wah, Wah, WAh, WAH, WAH!!!  Okay, so maybe the audio was a little better than that.  The wave motion gun was so powerful, the crewmembers had to wear special protective eyewear so they wouldn't be blinded and strap themselves tightly into their seats.

Here's a picture of the wave motion gun in action.

I found the Star Blazers series on Netflix about a year ago and watched them with CJ.  He absolutely loved it.  Fast forward to this summer in Korea.  The family is enjoying the day walking around one of the big shopping areas in Busan.  We turn the corner and see this on the side of a building:

CJ and I were both psyched.  Twenty-plus years later, the Star Blazers is still alive and kicking.  The guy with the beard and hat is Captain Avatar.  Derek Wildstar to his left took over later in the series after Captain Avatar was kicked out of the Star Force for sexual harassment and a bad habit of dropping trow at social events.  

I digress.  I only thought I got into the Navy business because of growing up around Navy bases, my Dad being a sailor and of course, those cool air shows and the Blue Angels.  Maybe it was a little more than that though.  Maybe the military themes and the wave motion gun from the Star Blazers series burned an indelible yet subliminal Navy recruiting message into my brain.  At any rate, I thought this was cool stuff as a kid.  It was additionally cool that CJ got into it as well, rather than thinking his dad was an anime dork.  

So what childhood enthusiasms did you have that you'd like to revisit?  The Solid Gold dancers don't count.  That one is a given.  Did you want to join Smurfette so she wouldn't be the only girl among a sausage party of blue dudes with white hats?  Does "By the power of Gray Skull" mean anything to you?  What was better than watching the Superfriends while chowing down on a big bowl of Golden Grahams cereal on a Saturday morning?  Don't be afraid to revisit those happy memories.  Netflix is great for that.  You can find all those old DVD series there.  I gotta tell you that sharing some of my childhood joys with CJ has been an absolute blast.  I highly encourage it.  Well, you don't have to share it with CJ.  It's probably better to do it with your own kids.  Until next time -- C2



I liked Space Blazers when I was a child. I was glad I found this in your blog. It reminded me of my childhood. Please don't guess my age:(
I enjoyed your blog. You did a lot of cool things!


I was fascinated by the fact that the Coyote always bought all his stuff from Acme Supply when he cooked up his random schemes to catch the road runner...guess it's lame but that's what I come back to.

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