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Ultraman: The Ultimate Hero (aka Ultraman Powered in Japan) is a 13-Episode miniseries and the third (and final) International Coproduction in the Ultra Series, this time between Tsuburaya Productions and Major Havoc Entertainment (later renamed Steppin Stone Entertainment).
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The members of WINR (pronounced "Winner") respond when members of the Baltan race attack Earth, but the Baltans are only fended off when a gigantic alien, Ultraman Powered, joins with WINR member Kenichi Kai and gives him the power to metamorphose into Ultraman in times of danger. After the initial battle, Ultraman declares that the Baltans were not completely defeated and that he will remain on Earth to continue the fight.

Despite being produced in the US, Ultraman: The Ultimate Hero never actually saw release there. Instead, the entire series was released in Japan as both Direct-to-Video in 1993 and airing on TV in 1995.


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The show has examples of the following tropes:

  • Adaptation Species Change: A few monsters get these.
    • Chandler is changed from a bat-like monster to a prehistoric flightless bird.
    • Dada goes from a three-faced alien to a trio of sentient computer viruses.
    • Dorako is changed from a natural dragon-like monster to a bioweapon of Alien Baltan.
    • Zetton is a robot instead, also created by the Baltans in this series.
  • Adaptational Badass: Dorako, hands down. The guy was pretty much a punching bag for Red King in Ultraman. Here, he not only kills Red King, but also gets to battle Ultraman for the first time and actually defeats Ultraman and injures him badly enough that he's forced separate from Kai.
  • Adaptational Heroism: Dr. Hasegawa, the counterpart of Dr. Nikaido from the original series. While Hasegawa wants to keep the living dinosaur he was studying alive, he's willing to help WINR destroy it if it becomes a threat to the civilian population, whereas Dr. Nikaido had to be captured and interrogated by the Science Patrol for information.
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  • Adaptational Wimp: Gomora gets hit hard with this. In the original series, he's a furious and virtually unstoppable juggernaut who pummels the crap out of Ultraman and takes numerous grievous injuries before finally going down. Here, he dies only a couple hours after being revived from his hibernation due to being unable to adapt to the present.
  • Airborne Aircraft Carrier: The Mobile Deployment Carrier, a massive airship capable of carrying all of WINR's other vehicles inside it.
  • Art Evolution: Every monster in the series is given a massive design upgrade, often more detailed and menacing appearances that some fans consider to be superior to the original designs. In Japan, they're differentiated from their classic counterparts with the "Powered" title (e.g.: Powered Red King)
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: As per Ultra Series norm, episodes revolve around battling rampaging giant monsters.
  • Big Bad: Ultraman's most iconic enemy, the Baltans, are given this status.
  • Crew of One: While the MDC does have multiple stations on The Bridge, it can be operated single handed.
  • Darker and Edgier: While this show as a whole isn't any darker than is typical for the Ultra Series, the episode A Father's Love, a remake of the original series episode My Home is Earth, is by far the most emotionally-charged episode of this series and deals with far heavier subject matter than the original, which is generally considered the darkest episode of the classic Ultraman show to begin with. Instead of Jamila being revealed as an astronaut who was betrayed by his government after the fact, we see the pain his disappearance and subsequent transformation into a monster has caused his family and the cruelty of his former superiors firsthand when his daughter is taken hostage to lure him in so he can be captured and presumably dissected (with the strong implication that the same thing would happen to Kai if the government knew he was Ultraman).
    • And then there's the Dadas. In the original series they just kidnapped people using a Shrink Ray. Here they're a sentient computer virus that kills people in order to create physical bodies for itself by absorbing the carbon from their cells, leaving behind nothing but dust.
  • Diegetic Soundtrack Usage: Towards the start of "The Dada Factor", a guy coming out of the shower can be heard humming the original Ultraman OP.
  • Disney Villain Death: The Female Red King in the 3rd Episode.
  • Dub Name Change: The Beta Capsule is renamed the "Flash Prism" in Japanese to distinguish it from the one in the original series.
  • Finishing Move: Ultraman's (unnamed) Specium Ray, which is named as "Mega Specium Ray" in the Japanese-speaking perspective.
  • Five-Token Band: As an American equivalent to Science Patrol, WINR's five members are made of three whites (two of whom are female), a black man as the captain, and a Japanese guy as the host of Ultraman.
  • Fun with Acronyms: Defense team Worldwide Investigation Network Response-team (WINR)
  • Fusion Dance: Baltan and Dada do this to turn giant-sized.
  • International Co Production: The second final of these done in the late 80s and early 90s by Tsuburaya, as well as the second American one after the animated Ultraman: The Adventure Begins.
  • Kaiju: Uniquely, every monster in the show is recycled from the original Ultraman.
  • Monster of the Week: Following the formula of the original Ultraman, ''Ultraman: The Ultimate Hero" primarily deals with weekly kaiju threats that need to be stopped.
  • Mythology Gag:
    • When studying the Baltan's exoskeleton, Beck quips that it's definitely not an oyster, recalling the original series' episode The Pearl Oyster Defense Order.
      • Similarly, one of the student journalists who discovers Abolas and Banila's "coffins" wonders if there's a mummy inside. The original series featured an episode entitled Cry of the Mummy.
    • Dorako kills Red King — an ironic twist on the events of episode 25 of Ultraman.
    • Like Science Patrol, WINR airlifts Gomora, only for the anesthetic to wear off earlier than expected.
      • Speaking of Gomora, the storyline of the episode in which it appears, Dino-Might, is actually a remake of The Mysterious Dinosaur Base from the original series, in which the Science Patrol enlists the aid of a scientist who had been studying the kaiju of the week to track it down when it escapes and goes on a rampage, but using the more iconic Gomora instead of the original's Jirass, a repainted Godzilla suit with a frilled lizard collar stuck on. The funny part is that Gomora is replacing the "King of Monsters" when the episode featuring it from the original series was entitled Prince of the Monstersnote .
    • Ultraman's battle against Aboras and Banila references how the script for the two monsters' original appearance called for Ultraman to fight them both, instead of just Aboras like in the final result.
  • Red Is Heroic: Ultraman himself.
  • Shout-Out: Dada refers to human bodies as "Carbon Units".
  • Sickening "Crunch!": One is heard when Gabora kills the foreman of a uranium mine by stepping on him.
  • Spared by the Adaptation: Zambolar and Red King (although Dorako kills the latter).
  • Spell My Name with an "S": Kemular is called Kemura in this series. Likewise, Chandler is changed to Chondra.
  • Toku:
  • To Win Without Fighting: Ultraman "against" Zambolar in The Fires Beneath".
  • Trash the Set: Zetton's Drop Cocoon lands right on top of WINR HQ at the end of the penultimate episode.
  • Two Girls to a Team: Theresa Beck and Julie Young are the team's girls.

 
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Alternative Title(s): Ultraman Powered

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Ultraman: The Ultimate Hero

Ultraman's US-produced series uses an instrumental version of the series' theme for its opening.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (2 votes)

Example of:

Main / InstrumentalThemeTune

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