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  • Angst? What Angst?: Tohru seems to take all the tragedy in his life in stride. Look at how calmly he buries Leo after Bunyo and Commander Black tortured and killed him.
  • Audience-Alienating Premise: The show is a Deconstruction of most Toku tropes, back before deconstruction became widespread in Japanese media. This show was so much Darker and Edgier than expected that it may have led to the lowest ratings so far in the franchise (single digits). Also, Gen's Training from Hell got old quick. It may also account for the slight Retool after Episode 13, when Leo began using more energy-based attacks, as opposed to his Bare-Fisted Monk exploits early on. Ultraman Leo would have fell into Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy if not retooled.
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  • Awesome Music: Both theme songs, Gen's training music from Ep. 7 (involves his True Companions throwing boomerangs at him), and the Theme Music Power-Up from Ep. 1 as Leo swooped down to save Seven (reprised in Ep. 22, during Astra's first scene).
  • Base-Breaking Character: Dan. Is he a stern teacher that's just frustrated with Gen's hotheadedness and only wants to help him become a true hero, or is he an abusive bully who torments Gen for things that are out of his control?
    • Another side of this is that Dan may be more frustrated with his current situation: He's powerless to stop possibly one of the most aggressive waves of kaiju ever, his men are constantly outgunned and being killed off left and right, and the only thing he has for backup is a hot-headed rookie. Of course he's going to project this on Gen as (sometimes) unreasonable expectations.
    • He may very well be suffering from PTSD. Back in the original show, his constant and escalating battles took a toll on his body, forcing him to go home. That, his subsequent adventures (on- and off-screen), plus his painful (and no doubt humiliating) defeat in Episode 1, had to hurt his spirit as well. He's a bit of a Death Seeker here, knowingly using his Ultra Psychokinesis until his face literally turns blue. You can tell his methods are pretty desperate at times. Also, others now look up to him, especially Leo. Dan's cross is not easy to bear.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: Episode 12, which told a story of a brave but reckless man who joined MAC off the street, had only three characters if you count the kaijuu (MAC and the rest of the cast show up at the end), and ended with the man leaving MAC for parts unknown. It was all the more startling because it was Played for Laughs.
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    • Episode 29 came out of the blue, has nothing to do with future episodes, and it brought no closure for Dan. It was just a case of Mistaken Identity.
  • Broken Base: Depending on who you ask, Leo is one of the best Ultra series or one of the worst. The former side adores its Darker and Edgier tone (especially given the extremely childish Ultraman Taro that preceded it) and daring writing that went to new directions for the franchise, the latter side cannot abide the series' portrayal of Dan Moroboshi (especially since Ultraseven is considered one of the greatest Ultra series) and its wasted ideas, such as the usage of Astra.
  • Catharsis Factor: Commander Black getting an undignified death at the hands of a group of kids.
  • Cerebus Roller Coaster: The series has a bad habit of jumping between some of the darkest episodes ever produced for the Showa Ultra Series (the first four episodes, the Alien Babalou two-parter, and the Living Saucers story arc) and then doing some very ridiculous episodes more in tone with Ultraman Taro (the Ultra Fairy Tales miniseries and the episodes with Taishoh, Renbolar, and Bango).
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  • Complete Monster: Commander Black is a psychopathic alien invader from the Black Star. Arriving on Earth, Black makes his presence known by having Silver Bloome eat MAT and an entire shopping mall full of people alive in a rampage, killing hundreds. During his invasion, Black would make a habit of directing his monsters to directly attack and kill people in horrific and sadistic ways, as well as targeting children who had befriended Leo in order to get at him. He would also mass brainwash the citizens to attack Leo. After managing to capture Leo with the assistance of Alien Bunyo, Black would have the hero beaten, frozen, and then personally hack him into pieces with a saw while he was still conscious. During the fight with his final monster Black End, Black would take Leo's young friend Toru hostage at sword point to force the hero to allow himself to be brutally beaten by the monster. In one last act of spite, as he's beaten to death by the very children he used to try and get at his nemesis, Black summons the Black Star to crash into Earth. An utterly depraved alien conqueror, Black remains one of the most vile characters in the history of the franchise.
  • Crazy Awesome: That MAC team member from Episode 12, the one who looked like a homeless man. He was very lucky...
  • The Determinator: Gen, complete with optimism and a big smile...
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Ultraman King, Astra, and Tohru.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: Dan's depowered state in this show is reminiscent of Bruce Banner's Hulk-less condition in Avengers: Infinity War. Both get defeated at the beginning and are unable to transform back into their heroic forms.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: A powerful organization's huge offshore operating base is almost completely annihilated from a surprise attack lead by a mysterious man dressed in black clothing, most prominently a wide-brimmed hat and a black longcoat. Sound familiar?
  • It Was His Sled: Most people watching the show for the first time know that Seven is disabled and MAC is annihilated.
  • Memetic Mutation: Reoooo! Taichouuuu!
  • Narm: Episode 26, featuring a prankster alien (looking a lot like a mutated, evil Teletubby) and a shrunken Leo escaping the alien's clutches and looking for Dan. It got better.
    • A Killer Doll that freezes its victims with its breath might have been scary had there not been footage of it flying.
  • Never Live It Down: Dan's attempt to run over Gen with a car as part of his training!
  • Nightmare Face: Alien Pressure.
  • The Scrappy: To many people, Dan. His abusive treatment of Gen, hypocritical nature, lack of empathy, and punishing Gen for things that are out of his control make him a truly detestable character.
  • Special Effects Failure: A lot in this show, due to the 70's oil crisis. That, and budget/schedule overruns in Ultraman Taro. For example, Seven's costume in Episode 1 had no ears.
  • Squick:
    • Commander Black's messy demise.
    • Bunyo has a human form, a "humanoid" form with green skin, a small alien form, and a kaijuu form. As soon as he transforms from his human form, he tracks slime everywhere.
    • Speaking of slime, Silver Bloom's constant use of acid is pretty icky.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: Astra. Despite his role as Leo's long-thought-to-be-deceased brother being ripe for storytelling, his role rarely amounted to anything more than a Deus ex Machina. Even in later series, he ends up playing second fiddle to Leo.
  • Villain Decay: From the destruction of both planet L77 and Tokyo to the courting of "the most beautiful monster in the universe", Alien Magma lost his edge between Episode 2 and 30.
  • Vindicated by History: Poor ratings, but a lot of adult fans like seeing an Ultra show this dark for once. It was intended to woo back some adult audiences who disliked Taro's comical tone, but ended scaring young viewers away.
    • Vindicated By Video On Demand: Became the third Ultraman series released on Crunchyroll after the more recent shows Max and Mebius. Leo made a reappearance in the latter.
  • What an Idiot!: Commander Black dies after being Zerg Rushed by a troupe of children.
  • What Do You Mean, "It's for Kids"? / What Do You Mean, It's Not for Kids?: The series is somewhere between both. On one hand, it shows a lot of gruesome violence and some unexpectedly shocking death scenes more typical of a series aimed for older audiences, but on the other hand, it tends to feature a lot of goofiness and kid characters play a bigger role than one would expect such a dark and mature series to.
  • The Woobie: Poor Gen Ootori. All he wanted was justice for his home planet and to live peacefully on Earth thereafter...
    • Tohru, who loses his father in gruesome fashion and then his Nakama, too.
    • Leo ends up as an Iron Woobie by the time he gives Mebius a hand.


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