So the other day, I asked myself a question: why do I like Kamen Rider?
Call it a crisis of faith, I guess. It’s easy to get caught up in something and follow it out of some unspoken sense of obligation -- like you’re just going through the motions, because “I did the thing once, so I might as well do the thing again.” I’m pretty sure I’ve typecast myself as some kind of Rider fanatic, given how many times I slip allusions, images, and even secret references into my posts. (To say nothing of the posts actually about Kamen Rider.) In a perfect world, people would pay more attention to that stuff instead of huddling around the campfire when I upload a post on Final Fantasy/Kingdom Hearts/the madhouse that is Squeenix. But I digress.
Pared down to basics, I like KR because I like heroes. And not to get maudlin or pitiable, but it’s a safe bet that I needed to see heroes in my life. After all, it’s probably not a coincidence that I started seriously getting into the franchise in the same year -- 2013 -- that I went through some major personal losses. Beyond that, I had to deal with the frustration of having my own works -- my writing, my dreams, and my own batch of heroes -- rejected to the point where I scrapped and rebooted years of work. Beyond that, it seemed like fiction in the western world had basically given up on heroes. Man of Steel turned Superman into a braindead whirlwind of destruction and angst. The Walking Dead became a hit with a cast of survivors barely a cut above the zombies they routinely shot in the head. I…I don’t even want to talk about DmC.
I’ll argue that the world needs heroes -- even, if not especially fictional -- but I’ll also acknowledge that that’s some top-tier projecting. Ineed heroes. KR delivered, again, and again, and again. And that’s why I’m here today once again, as a fan, and as a spokesperson. These are my Top 4 picks of the franchise thus far.
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