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The Top 10 Manliest Man Moments #5: Godzilla Crashes the Party

Today we finally crack the Top 5 of the Azn Badger’s Top 10 Manliest Man Moments in movies!

While the majority of the MANLY moments leading up to this one have been highlights from various MANLY action star’s careers, today we’re going to be tackling a moment that belongs not so much to a MANLY MAN of MANLINESS; but rather a fictional character that embodies many of the same values.

Said fictional character is of course the walking symbol of nuclear holocaust, Godzilla.

FUCK YES.

Anyone who’s read a post or 2 from this blog is likely aware that Godzilla is, and always will be one my biggest heroes.

I’ve been watching the Big-G’s movies since before I could speak, and though he’s not exactly human; even at a young age I found I identified with him in some bizarre way.

Now, as many of you are aware, Godzilla is a character who has been portrayed by a number of actors, in a number of different ways.

In his earliest appearances as well as much of the 90’s, Godzilla was essentially a wild beast; a force of nature driven by a wholly reptilian brain.

Hey, just because Godzilla's MANLY doesn't mean his brain isn't the size of a peanut.

In the 60’s and 70’s though, as the franchise lightened it’s tone to appeal to youngsters; Godzilla began to take on a more human-like characteristics, both in appearance and behavior.

More importantly, the kid-friendly Godzilla was often portrayed as a hero; a factor that was largely responsible for securing his place on this list.

In that sense, it should come as no surprise that our 5th MANLIEST MAN moment comes from the 1975 Godzilla flick, and last of the original Showa era of films, Terror of Mechagodzilla AKA Mekagojira no Gyakushu AKA Mechagodzilla’s Counter-Attack:

Terror of Mechagodzilla is hands down my favorite Godzilla movie.

Directed by Ishiro Honda, the director of the original 1954 Godzilla; the movie pretty much has everything you could want in a sci-fi B-movie.

Seriously man, despite the title of the movie only listing 1 monster, Terror of Mechagodzilla included aliens, secret agents, the only instance of exposed boobs in Godzilla movie history, and 3 giant monsters for the price of 1!

The copy of the movie I had when I was a kid didn’t have the boobs, but rest assured; everything else listed above went a long way towards making me watch it every fuckin’ day of my youth.

In particular, I found that Titanosaurus, a rare “tooth and claw” monster in Godzilla’s gallery of rogues; did a lot to keep me coming back to Terror of Mechagodzilla as a kid.

"DuRR! I HaS a RaDiO TOWer!!! DuRR!!!"

I loved his unique, cackling roar, and how he was tough and scrappy despite being largely unable to handle the Big-G without tagging Mechagodzilla in every now and again.

In all, I have a lot of love for Titanosaurus, and am still surprised that this was the only film he ever appeared in.

Bearing a decidedly more severe and mature tone than most of the other 70’s Godzilla movies, Terror of Mechagodzilla is for sure a dumb enough movie for kids to understand; however it goes out of it’s way to do so without being condescending.

In addition to this, the movie also gets brownie points for serving as a time capsule for perhaps the gaudiest and most hideous examples of mid-70’s Japanese fashion.

Seriously man, if the lapels were any bigger in this movie the actors probably would’ve suffocated on the set…

My favorite character in the movie (besides Godzilla of course) was Jiro Murakoshi, the pimp-ass Interpol agent who I’d later learn stole his entire pimp-ass wardrobe from the Japanese apex of pimp himself, Golgo-13.

Cosmic...

I could go on an on about how awesome Murakoshi was, but in the interest of keeping this post at least a little bit focused; I figure I should move on to our MAN moment for today.

In all my years of watching Godzilla movies, I’ve found that the overall quality and tone of a Godzilla movie can often times be gauged by the awesomeness of Godzilla’s first appearance in the film.

As I mentioned earlier, Terror of Mechagodzilla is easily my favorite Godzilla movie; and as such, it also happens to be the film that bears his finest entrance sequence:

At this point in the movie, Mechagodzilla hasn’t been completed yet; so Titanosaurus is really the only monster we’ve seen in action.

Tearing his way through Yokosuka under the control of Akihiko Hirata’s Dr. Mafune and his daughter, Tomoko Ai’s Katsura; Titanosaurus easily routs the JSDF and makes his way towards the downtown area.

Meanwhile, the alien leader Mugaru played Goro Mutsumi consults with his right hand man regarding an incoming source of radiation approaching Yokosuka from the sea.

Pictured: HD TV in the 70's.

Concluding that this massive source of radiation can only be Godzilla, the aliens snicker to one another as they decide to let the monster make landfall and confront Titanosaurus in the hope that 1, or both will die in the resulting conflict.

We then cut back to Titanosaurus stomping through the city, causing incalculable amounts of property damage; when out in the distance an angry shadow emerges…

As yet another building falls to the wanton fury of Titanosaurus, out of nowhere a familiar beam of sapphire-blue fire streaks across the sky and knocks the long-necked beast the ground:

Smoke billows from the streets beneath Titanosaurus as the camera sweeps across the skyline to key in on the massive shadow in the distance.

An electrical crackle lights up the night sky as Akira Ifukube’s legendary score roars to life and the shadow emerges from the darkness, revealing the scowling face of our savior and hero, Godzilla!

Godzilla bearing his classic, "Angry Shave Monkey" look.

Seeing his would be opponent felled so easily, the King of the Monsters lets off a domineering roar, to which Titanosaurus can only respond with a reluctant whimper.

His challenge accepted, Godzilla enthusiastically bashes his knuckles together and bears his claws; signaling his urge to fight.

With that, the tension mounts as the 2 monsters square off in classic samurai fashion, only to abruptly slam into one another; sending a cloud of debris and dust into air.

Minutes later this sequence comes to an equally abrupt end as Dr. Mafune orders the retreat of Titanosaurus as a result of Katsura being injured during the engagement.

Watching Godzilla emerge from the shadows in such bad-ass fashion is a memory I’ll always treasure as one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen in movies.

Truth be told, the score during this sequence, and indeed the entirety of Terror of Mechagodzilla; is largely responsible for it’s awesomeness if you ask me.

Sure, the music played during this sequence is just the same old Godzilla march we’ve been hearing for the past 50+ years; however this particular version of it is one of, if not the strongest version I know of.

It’s slowed down a bit, with a deeper and harsher sound to it, lending the track a severity that is foreign in an otherwise colorful and energetic piece of music.

Anyway, this was MANLY moment #5, check back tomorrow for #4!

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The Top 10 Manliest Man Moments #10: Beard-Shiro

Alrighty boys ‘n girls, it’s been a long time coming, but today we’re finally kickin’ off a new Top 10 list.

This time around we’re gonna’ be venturing into the depths of MANLY cinema to dig up the Top 10 Manliest Man Moments in movie history.

Better buckle your ass down, ’cause for the next 10 days, testosterone levels are gonna’ shoot through the roof, energy drinks will be consumed en masse, fake boobies will be squeezed, Tapout gear’ll be worn 24/7, and no opportunity to apply the principles of infighting will be missed out on.

Okay, maybe things won’t get that meatheaded around here; at least I hope not…

Pictured: The poster boy for a generation...

In any case, expect much violence, feats of strength, and epic acts of selfless heroism to be the core subjects explored over the next 10 days.

That being said, while things may in fact get a little meat head-y in the immediate future, bear with me, ’cause believe me; this shit’s gonna’ be awesome.

Anyway, let’s get the ball rollin’ with the first entry in our list, the 10th Manliest Man Moment as seen in Hokuto No Ken: The Movie:

Hokuto No Ken AKA Fist of the North Star is perhaps the MANLIEST anime or manga in existence.

Except maybe Golgo 13…  Golgo 13’s the shit.

THAT FUCKING PIMP.

To the sad few that might not be aware of it, Hokuto No Ken takes the post-apocalyptic world of Mad Max, re-casts a Japanese Bruce Lee as the main character; and features (numerous) instances of him blowing people the fuck up by TOUCHING THEM as it’s core plot point.

If that’s not fuckin’ MANLY, then I don’t know what is.

Oh wait, THIS:

Anyway, the main character of Hokuto No Ken is an insanely powerful martial artist named Kenshiro.

Kenshiro is essentially your basic Yojimbo-esque silent do-gooder, albeit one that dispenses justice with the body exploding martial art of Hokuto Shinken as opposed to say, a six-shooter or katana.

Throughout the series, Ken kills an ungodly number of people; almost always in horribly gruesome fashion.

While any one of said kills could easily be ranked as one of the Manliest Man Moments in movies, or at least the goriest; such instances of bone-crunching blood fuck-ery occur in Hokuto No Ken with such alarming regularity; that it kind of loses it’s luster after awhile.

I hate to say it, but you can only see a guy’s intestines fall out, or his head explode so many times before it starts to seem routine.

Dude, Neutrogena. Look into it.

Well okay, maybe not routine; but you know what I mean.

Anyway, as weird as it may sound, perhaps the most badass thing Kenshiro ever did in Hokuto No Ken actually involved no maiming or butchering.

Well, “very little” maiming or butchering anyway…

You see, perhaps the most awesome thing Ken ever did in all of Hokuto No Ken and it’s spin-offs, was get his ass whupped and grow a pimp-ass fuckin’ beard:

Pictured: The beard equivalent to Sam Elliot's mustache.

While that is indeed perhaps the pimpest beard in all of existence, I have to admit; simply bearing it isn’t enough to constitute a slot on this list.

Thankfully, Kenshiro manages to one-up the awesomeness of his newly bearded visage almost immediately by, you guessed it; turning some grossly outmatched thugs into salsa waterballoons.

Not only that, he does so after essentially RETURNING FROM THE FUCKING DEAD.

At the beginning of the movie, we’re treated to a sequence wherein Ken gets his ass handed to him by a blond douchebag named Shin.

And of course by "ass handed to him" I mean he got 7 holes poked into his torso by Shin's fingers.

Flash forward sometime later, and we find a couple of kids named Bat/Bart and Lin/Rin (sorry, Japanese is weird like that…) being attacked by some Road Warrior thugs.

Literally seconds away from being mudhole stomped to death by a biker dude, Lin/Rin throws on a PURPLE FUCKING AURA and summon her random fuckin’ psychic powers to call out to Kenshiro, who just happens to be nearby.

From there, Ken’s second appearance in Hokuto No Ken: The Movie sees him literally RISE FROM HIS GRAVE to save the kids looking like Swamp Thing or some shit.

Now, while that may not sound that awesome, bear in mind that Mr. Kenshiro then proceeds to absent mindedly knock a couple of skyscrapers down WITH HIS FISTS.

Not only that, one of said buildings actually falls on Mud Man Kenshiro’s head, and he justs keeps right on walking like nothing happened.

Hell, the building even waits for him to walk out from under it to finish falling over!

Immediately following this, Ken struts his way up to the thugs; shedding his Mud Man getup along the way to reveal:

An awesomely pimptastic hood and beard combo!

BAM! Stylish!

As awesome as the “Deployment of the Beard” was, the real icing on the cake is the fact that this magnificently MANLY entrance sequence is wasted on a handful of some of the lowliest and most puny thugs in the entire Hokuto No Ken universe.

Despite having just seen the man-mountain before them RISE FROM THE GRAVE and KNOCK FUCKING BUILDINGS DOWN WITH HIS BARE HANDS, in classic kung fu movie fashion; the thugs proceed to pull knives and crossbows on ‘ole Ken.

10 bucks says Ken's dick is sharper than that knife...

Not only that, during all of this the motherfucker that was stompin’ a mudhole on little Lin/Rin doesn’t even think to take his boot off of her.

The girl put up a PURPLE FUCKIN’ AURA while you were stomping her and then a muddy fuckin’ Juggernaut came back to life, started wreckin’ buildings n’shit, and then proceeded to march straight towards your ass with GLOWING RED FUCKING EYES.

Even if the dude failed to make the connection between the Mud Man and the girl, you’d think he’d at least, y’know; stop doing what he was doing, or better yet, RUN THE FUCK AWAY.

Regardless, rest assured the dude that made with the stompage is the first to get it… BAAAAAAAAAADDDD….

Yeah, pretty sure your eye's not supposed to do that...

From there, Ken proceeds make goopy cherry Jell-O out of the rest of the gang, caving in faces and the like.

This isn’t the most creative of Ken’s beatdowns in Hokuto No Ken, given that it favors speed and efficiency over brutality and rage; however for what it’s worth, I’m pretty sure none of the bad guys make it out of the fight able to wear hats anymore.

Oh yeah, and none of them lived either, which is a plus.

You see they ain't got heads no more, so hats would be... Yeah, dumb joke; I know...

As mentioned above, this sequence was far from the most brutal moments in Hokuto No Ken history, however the awesomeness of the entrance; coupled with the ultra-rare appearance of Beard-Shiro put this one high on my list in terms of badass moments in movies.

Well, #10 anyway…

That being said, this was just the beginning of the Azn Badger’s Top 10 Manliest Man Moments in movies.

Check back tomorrow for more MANLINESS as we move on to Manly Moment #9!

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Azn Badger’s Top 25 NES Tracks, #10-6

Hold onto your butts folks, we’ve finally made it to the Top 10 of the Top 25 NES Tracks!

Rest assured, while many of the entries on this list have been somewhat obscure, expect the majority of the remainder to consist of old favorites and themes from game series that are still going strong to this day.

That being said, let’s get to the first half of the Top 10!:

#10. Golgo 13: Top Secret Episode

“Golgo 13 Theme”


Remember when I said that you’d be familiar with all of the games in the Top 10?


Golgo 13: Top Secret Episode is a Vic Tokai espionage/action game based upon the massively epic manga series by Takao Saito, Golgo 13.

While I could bore you with a detailed description of the backstory of said manga, I find it’s easier to sum things up by saying this:

Golgo 13 is THE SHIT, and could give ROBERT FUCKING MULDOON a run for his money in terms of manliness and overall badassery.

Trust me, he’s seriously that fucking pimp…

 

 

THAT FUCKING PIMP.

 

Anyway, the NES version of Golgo 13, was neat game that I loved to play in my youth.

It was a serious game, with an involving and suitably “adult” storyline that really made you feel cool to be a part of, especially as a kid.

Basically, it felt good to play a game that had enough confidence in my intelligence to talk to me like a big kid and give me objectives that felt a little more mature than say, saving the goddamn princess.

 

*Sigh* Really?...

 

Half of the fun I had with Golgo 13, came in the form of the game’s theme music, which conveniently enough, could be brought up at any time simply by hitting the pause button!

Being as Golgo 13 is essentially the Japanese equivalent to James Bond, (only 10 times more badass an amoral) it’s only appropriate that his theme music in the game be a rousing and shlocky tune that would be right at home on a Ventures album.

Not only that, the Japanese version of the title screen has lyrics that flash on the screen in time to music, karaoke style!

I can read about 95% of it, maybe I should try and sing the fuckin’ song someday…

#9. Castlevania

“Vampire Killer”

I’ve never really been a Castlevania kid.

While I love Konami games, particularly of the 8 and 16-bit eras, Castlevania was perhaps the one flagship title in their library that I never really cared much for.

I never liked how the jumping system was heavily momentum based, so much so that mid-air adjustments were nigh impossible.

I hated the cheap, pitfall deaths that were just a constantly spawning flying medusa head away.

 

Oh you fuckin' bitch...

 

And I suppose it doesn’t help either that I don’t care much for Gothic art and design.

On the NES, the only Castlevania I ever played was the very first.

While I ended up walking away from the game feeling it was alright, but not great, the music was, and is, something that will always stick with me.

The Castlevania games are known throughout gaming circles for their incredible soundtracks, and rightfully so.

While many of the compositions of the early games have since gone on to be remixed, and usually improved, my favorite track from the original NES game was the first stage theme, “Vampire Killer.”

“Vampire Killer” survives to this day as the single most prominent theme in the series.

I love it’s light-hearted yet spooky feel, as right off the bat it cues you in on the fact that:

 

 

"This game is gonna' be all horror n'shit, but don't worry, it's still an action game!"

 

It’s a wonderful, timeless piece of gaming music history, and though I still don’t care much for Castlevania, any Castlevania; it still deserves it’s spot on this list.

#8. Super Mario Bros.

“World 1-1”


What’s this?

The Mario theme, placed at #8 on a Top 25 list!?

BLASPHEMY.

Yes, I’ll admit it, I’m surprised it’s ranked as low as it is too.

Truth of the matter is, I knew it had to go somewhere on here, but I ended up arbitrarily placing it “somewhere” in the Top 10 to satisfy my conscience, while at once ensuring that my true favorites got the justice they deserved.

The Super Mario Bros. Theme is game music.

Plain and simple.

It’s one of the most memorable and enduring arrangements in all of gaming history, and no force on Earth, no matter how hipster or counter-culture, could keep it from receiving a spot on any gaming music Top 10 list.

 

"Yeah, I don't care much for Mario, too mainstream. I only play obscure bullshit like Faria and Faxanadu... On my original NES... On a TV from 1982... While wearing a shirt from 1986..."

 

Mario games are something that I’d like to think can appeal to anyone.

They’re fun, straightforward, and typically blessed with a difficulty level that is appropriately challenging, but never punishingly so.

While I’ve always liked Mario games, in truth I never really played them that much.

My brother stomped the shit out of pretty much all of them up to Super Mario 64, but despite living in a household that owned most of said games, I spent most of my time playing other stuff.

 

 

Pictured: Other stuff.

 

I suppose I was too into beat ’em ups in my youth to take the time to sit down and work my way through the platforming goodness of Mario.

Anyway, there’s nothing I can say about “World 1-1” that hasn’t been said, so I won’t try.

I can’t say I fully agree with my placement of this particular track, but I’m happy with my Top 5, so I figure it all balances out.

#7. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2: The Arcade Game

“Technodrome Stage Theme”


Okay, so we’re all in agreement that Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles was the shit back in the early 90’s, right?

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2: The Arcade Game, was the NES version of the Konami Ninja Turtles arcade game found in virtually every arcade/pizza joint in America.

 

 

If I were very rich, and very stupid, I would own one of these...

 

While it lacked the graphical polish of the arcade version, much like in the case of Turtles in Time; I’ve always maintained that the console version was superior.

Aside from including 2 extra stages and unique boss characters, the console version also had better controls and a more manageable and less “quarter-munching” difficulty level.

Ninja Turtles 2 was easily one of the most played games in me and my brother’s NES library.

It was fun, it was a Ninja Turtles product, it had “two player simultaneous gameplay,” and did I mention it was the NINJA FUCKING TURTLES!!?

I remember bringing Ninja Turtles 2 over to my friend’s houses, playing it all fuckin’ day, and then sitting down and watching Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2: The Secret of the Ooze over and over again until my mom picked me up.

 

 

Y'know, back in the 5 minutes or so we all thought this guy was the coolest thing EVER.

 

THAT, my friends, is what childhood was all about.

The Technodrome Stage Theme” is not only an incredible, and undeniably “Konami” piece of music, it was also something that was quite elusive to me in my youth.

Possessed of a rockin’ and moody quality that really jumps out to you as “last level” music, the “Technodrome Stage Theme” was a track that I didn’t get to hear that often because, well, Ninja Turtles 2 was actually kind of a hard game.

In many ways, me having only had a few opportunities to hear this track in my youth played a huge role in elevating this track to such a high spot on the list.

Oh yeah, that and the fact that it’s a fucking awesome piece of pulse-pounding, pizza-munching, teenage-mutant-ninja action music!

Turtle Power FOREVER.

#6. Blaster Master

“Stage 1 Theme”


After 3 of the bottom 5 of the tracks on this list came from Sunsoft products, did you really think there wouldn’t be at least one more game from them on here?

It’s true, I dig Sunsoft music, and when it comes to Sunsoft’s music library, I can think of no other game to better represent them than Blaster Master.

 

 

*Ahem!* That would be, "Master Blaster."

 

Blaster Master was a game I used to play at my barber’s house.

No, not the one that gave me a Nintendo Power, a different one.

Like most of the games on this list, I never really got anywhere in Blaster Master, but fuck man, I really wish I had…

I enjoyed every minute I played of the tank-hopping, grenade tossing action of the first stage in Blaster Master, and as always; a lot of my enjoyment came from the background music.

The “Stage 1 Theme” of Blaster Master is a terrific piece of music that really succeeds in capturing the colorful and adventurous spirit of the game and it’s setting.

It really feels like music you’d hear in a weird sci-fi world while patrolling the forests in a giant tank in search of your pet frog.

 

 

Hah! Thought I was kidding about the plot, didn't you?

 

That last sentence didn’t really make a whole lot of sense, so let me rephrase:

The “Stage 1 Theme” of Blaster Master is awesome, and it makes me smile, so therefore it is #6.

Well, folks, that does it for the first half of the Top 10!

Tomorrow we’ll finally be wrapping things up with the remaining Top 5, as well as the announcement of the #1 NES Track!

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