2014/09/14

Top 7 Kamen Rider Bikes



Well, I really wasn't planning on doing a Top 7 or a Top 7 on Kamen Rider Bikes, but here we are... I am doing this list because it's probably been requested the most in recent times and because I have been uploading a string of Figuarts bike reviews to my Youtube Channel. I've done Battle Hopper, Road Sector, and now Acrobatter. Suddenly it makes a bunch of sense for me to be writing this list.

I previously drafted a Top 7 of Tokusatsu vehicles, but that is going to have to wait a little while. No, I'm not making a place for that butchered Honda NSX that will be featured in Kamen Rider Drive (that show hasn't even started yet and FUCK THAT SHOW), I just don't think I've gone through the Tokusatsu library well enough to do a thorough job on my list. That will be coming soon...

I will say this before I get started... I am not really a motorcycle guy. If Tokusatsu didn't have any motorcycles, I probably wouldn't be into them at all. That said, I can't really identify what bikes the Rider versions are based on. Well, except for the obvious ones like Super 1's V Machine pictured above--it's obviously a Harley-Davidson.

So here we go~

07. Hardboilder Kamen Rider W (2009)



Admittedly I don't know shit about Kamen Rider W. People tell me all the time that I should watch the show, and I might have to one day--but that's beside the point. I'm here to talk bikes.

Hardboilder has the same kind of cool that the 1989 Batmobile has. It's pretty drab, having a simple green and black paint scheme, yet it has a certain superhero flair to it. The interchangeable part thing is a pretty cool idea too, but I like the original the most.

06. Machine Tornador Kamen Rider Agito (2001)



Surfs up!

Machine Tornador is kinda the start of an annoying turning point in Kamen Rider history. First, they ditched Suzuki for Honda, and then they really started trying to make the bikes match the Rider suits. Sure, it was done in the past with Jungler and Z Bringer, but now it seems to be every bike. While the bikes in the past were made to handle stunts and become toys second, the new ones are pretty much toys first and foremost...maybe they'll end up in the show.

Machine Tornador is a pretty off-the-wall design compared to the pretty basic Agito suit...well, the Agito Ground Form atleast. Even though it is a lot more detailed than Agito, it still retains a similar feel to the Agito suit through it's matching gold accents and organic look.

On top of that, it can transform into a Slider. Not a Cyberslider, but hey...atleast it was cooler than Megasilver's.

05. Gaika Kamen Rider Hibiki (2005)


This is one of those things that made me simultaneously scratch my head and nod in agreement. Hibiki's pointless bike is not only a weird chopper/muscle bike...but it's also basically unmodified. Somehow they realized that if they painted a Honda Valkyrie Rune the same color as Hibiki, it would be a perfect match to the suit. It was a brave move...and I certainly applaud them for their creativity. The outcome was pretty cool.

04. Sky Turbo Kamen Rider [Skyrider] (1979)


Sometimes basic is best. As I mentioned earlier, there was a time when Rider bikes didn't always look like the Riders. Showa era Riders had a habit of being paired up with their bikes by Mr Magoo. Sometimes, the bikes were over the top designs like Jungler and V Machine, other times they were thinly veiled bog-standard dirtbikes like Sky Turbo.

Even though there isn't much flair in the design of Sky Turbo, there is no denying that there was a strong emphasis on it's use in the show. That footage of Sky Turbo busting through a window is etched in my brain forever despite many Rider bikes breaking through many things over the years. Hell, it was even immortalized on the cover of the Skyrider Music Collection.


Sure it may have been a take on the original Kamen Rider artwork of Cyclone jumping...but Cyclone wasn't breaking through a random window. Oh, and sorry BLACK...nice try, but no.

03. Battle Hopper/Acrobatter Kamen Rider BLACK/BLACK RX (1987/1988)


This isn't really cheating since, well, they're the same bike.

Abilities-wise, Battle Hopper wins out. It's a very capable bike for performance and was featured in a lot of spectacular stunts. Even as Road Sector was added to Kotaro's garage, Battle Hopper was still the main bike.

Looks-wise, I have to go with Acrobatter. Sure, it did perform some pretty big stunts...but Acrobatter eventually had to share screentime with Rideron and it's alternate forms Roboizer and Mach Jabber. It just looked cooler than Battle Hopper with a more shapely head and the power-clashing color scheme.

02. Cyclone Kamen Rider (1971)



How can you not love the original?

There are many reasons why Kamen Rider has survived throughout the years. Chief among which are the bikes that he rides every year. While it might have taken a few films for James Bond to get his famous Aston Martin DB5, Kamen Rider probably wouldn't have been given the luxury of time if he didn't have an iconic bike immediately. Cyclone is that bike, and atleast part of the franchise's survival should be credited to it.

Something about the perfect proportions and shoddy quality of the build make this one of my favorite bikes. It's DNA seems to reappear throughout the years in various other bikes also.

It's kind of a bummer the original design was replaced by New Cyclone after a somewhat short run. But hey, it'll live on forever as the first bike.

01. Z Bringer Kamen Rider ZO (1993)



The Z Bringer is about as close to perfection as I can think of for a Rider bike. It's incredibly slick looking with it's awesome paint scheme and tight lines. Maybe it would've been a little bit tighter looking if they swapped some of the silver for some off-white, but who cares.

This isn't really a bike set up for great stunts (though it did get ridden off a building in the film), but it's large role in Kamen Rider ZO was proof-enough that they were also proud of that design. I mean, it was even part of that kick-ass Henshin scene. J might have been the more bike-stunty Rider of the movie trio, but that bike was a bit dorky and wasn't given much screentime as a result.

It's hard to believe that such an awesome bike has the same underpinnings as Tyrannoranger's bike in Zyuranger.

It's rare that I call out Bandai...but gimme this damn bike to go with the upcoming ZO Figuart!

THE ABSOLUTE FUCKING WORST: Ride Shooter Kamen Rider Ryuki 2002

No.

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That is my Top Seven list for Rider bikes! Be sure to check out my other Top 7 lists and then voice your displeasure with me on Twitter.

See you next time,

-CC

15 comments:

  1. It’s nice to see another Top 7.
    This time it’s bike, an iconic vehicle for Kamen Rider franchise.
    Didn’t see this one coming, since it was posted day after I put comment on Acrobatter review.
    I like that list has good balance of Showa and Heisei Era, where there are 3 Showa, 3 Heisei, and 1 movie.
    That’s a pretty solid list.

    Hardboiler is one of the better designed bikes in post-Decade Riders.
    I like that it has superhero coloring and style.
    Regarding the series, I have seen a handful of episodes, and IMO it’s the most tolerable series in post-Decade. The series was written by Riku Sanjo… who also written an ENTIRE series of Kyoryuger (ugh).
    He’s also a writer for Kamen Rider Drive… not that you care or anything. lol

    Machine Tornador is my favorite bike design in the Heisei Era, where it does have Showa Era’s.
    Kuuga’s bike was OK, but design felt short IMO, so it was nice to see a better designed bike year later.
    Slider mode is a nice touch too.

    I don’t have much to say about Gaika and Sky Turbo, since I have yet to see those series (Hibiki and Skyrider), but the bike design is pretty decent; especially Sky Turbo.

    I’ve mention Battle Hopper and Acrobatter in review’s comment, so I really don’t have much to say here.
    It’s just an awesome bike. Plain and simple.

    Not surprised that very first Rider bike, end up on list. Can’t start the series without the bike.
    Looking forward for this review.

    I agree with absolute worst, Ride Shooter. This is where Rider bike starts to get an identity crisis, where they can't decide if it's a bike or something.
    This marks the start of lame bike design, that we get to see more in later installment.

    No honorable mentions this time?
    What's your least favorite in Showa Era?

    Bit surprised that Z Bringer ended up on #1. Didn’t see that one coming.
    Henshin scene with bike = Win, I suppose. Can’t argue with that.
    Such a shame, Heisei Era didn’t have cool henshin pose as those.
    Didn’t know that it had same underpinning as Tyrannoranger's bike in Zyuranger; should have used that for J. lol

    Overall, this was very nice Top 7 list and it was nice to remind how awesome the bike was back then.
    Now a day, bike design is just so lame and worthless, that it doesn’t have much screen time, since Rider these days doesn’t ride it so often (they don’t even kick as much). What’s worse, is that Drive’s producer (same person who was in charge of Kyoryuger) stated that Drive is NOT going to ride a bike (PERIOD!), only car, which defeats the purpose of Kamen RIDER; which makes me wonder why they just don’t call it Kamen DRIVER… but I digress.

    Take Care.

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    1. Heh. I was writing this list as my video went live over the weekend. I usually write the written part of the review two hours before the video goes live (I use scheduled uploading, so I have videos up to #404 uploaded at the moment). After I finished, I started writing this. Took me awhile to find decent photos. Obviously the Heisei ones were more difficult seeing as none of the Riders are on the bikes in those pictures. There were some, but they were pretty lousy.

      Shougo said it best on his blog (Them's Fightin Words) about Sentai Headwriters. He said "One hit wonder?". Granted, I've never seen W, but it's no denying that it was a hit since fans seem to complain that Toei has been unsuccessfully trying to copy it ever since.

      I don't always do honorable mentions so...hmmm... Road Sector. Worst of Showa was probably X's Cruiser.

      As for Drive... Atleast they've been putting how stupid their shows are going to be on front street since Fourze. I haven't been remotely compelled to see any of these recent shows.

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  2. Nice list. I didn't notice how nice W's bike was myself until recently watching some W in HD. It's one of the rare Heisei bikes that I think looks cool.

    I don't know a damn thing about cars or motorcycles, just what my eyes think are nice, but I've long missed the days of toku heroes riding Suzuki. For all I know, Honda's bikes are superior, but they always just look so bulky and square to me. The Suzukis may have just been dirt bikes, but they were slim and cool looking. My favorite's probably Battle Hopper.

    The Rideshooters...ugly bastards. Still, I was so into Ryuki in '02 I bought the Charawheels for some reason. I still think maybe OOO's vending machine bike is worse. Or how about Gaim's flower bikes? Producer Naomi Takebe is trying her best to kill Kamen Rider.

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    1. I don't think the decline in coolness for bikes has anything to do with the switch over to Honda. The bikes are designed for toys first and stunts second/never these days.

      The bikes of OOO and Gaim are the coffin, and the mutilated mid 90s Honda NSX that Drive has is the nail. What the hell are they thinking?

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    2. Gaim was the best rider series but I will admit the bikes were kinda stupid

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    3. Something tells me you like Gaim. Just a hunch...

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  3. Dear god all this shit taste. The OOO Bikes were fine. The Gaim Bikes took a while to get used to but the Rose Attacker grew on me.

    Also fuck off, the Trideron has nice vibes with the Ridoron. Still smh Drive isn't even out yet and you're already hating on it.

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    Replies
    1. Why so butthurt, precious? This is my blog so really you should be the one fucking off. :p

      My main point about Trideron is that it is Kamen RIDER, not Kamen Driver. They also made the declaration that Drive will not have a bike. They can take on as many wings and tires to Tirderon as they want, it's still a 20-year old used car.

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    2. No need to be picky though. I mean Ryuki itself broke so many things that was Kamen Rider, but it turned out to be so good. (Albiet only because it was a deconstruction of Rider al la Evangelion) But yeah, it's still odd. You're the only person on the nets that have bitched about Drive so far because of no bike. Then again, last rider was Dancing Fruit Samurai which eventually turned into a rollercoaster of twist after twist so I'd expect most people to be more open to ridiculous, unorthodox ideas towards Rider. (PS the extra reply was because it was on cell)
      (PSS /krg/ wuz here)

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    3. CClemon has no taste in anything from Heisei he just hates on everything that doesn't have Agito and/or Hibiki in the name(apart from the top 7 themes)

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    4. whoops I forgot W was here but he said he's not putting up with Kamen Rider cause he thinks EVERY SINGLE HEISEI RIDER SERIES IS RYUKI Eiji(Kamen Rider OOO) is not an idiot with an arrogance running around and Gaim was the peak of the franchise IMO

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  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess you were so mad that you wildly mashed the keyboard twice when hitting send. Hahaa.

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  5. gaim is the best kamen rider series ever made. this is hardboiled greninja xtreme, by the way. hello mmicb0b

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