One-armed Ultraman

Mike GristEntertainment, Haikyo, Statues / Monuments, Tokyo-to 3 Comments

Ultraman is a Japanese icon, guardian of Tokyo against all kinds of horrible invaders since 1966. His branding can be found everywhere, from plastic bento lunchboxes to bikes, cell-phone straps, and kids’ ride.

My buddy Scott was out walking the streets near his home in northern Tokyo and stumbled across this one-armed Ultraman. It doesn’t really qualify as a haikyo since it seems that it may still function, despite the missing arm and rust-coated surface. 10-yen will give your kids a ride into battle with whatever crazy alien-suited baddie the Man had to face.

Scott very kindly took these photos for use on this site. I converted them all to B&W.

Bold guardian to us all (for 10yen).

What mysteries await inside Ultraman? Probably the ossified corpse of his driver- Hayata, of the Science Patrol.

Stop! Who goes there?

You probably hadn’t realized from the above photos what a silly pose he was in. Of course, he’s flying. It does look odd though. Superman never flew like this.

With the other members of the Science Patrol.

The Science Patrol wait, as ever, for the right moment to serve…

It must be a simple ride. I guess from the pump we can see here that it just goes up and down a bit.

And that’s it. Read more about Ultraman on Wikipedia.

See more Japanese ruins (haikyo) in the galleries:

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You can also see a curation of world ruins in the ruins gallery.

Comments 3

  1. The sight of neglected kiddie rides like these fills me with an incredibly poignant mix of melancholy and nostalgia.

    I remember when Mom dropping in a coin and letting me ride on the way in or out of the grocery store was the thrill of my life, and I remember a time when I was mortified by the thought of the simple pleasure I used to enjoy. I remember the joy in seeing my own small children’s delight in riding these simple machines, and watched them outgrow the pleasure in turn.

    These rides wrap up childhood dreams and lost innocence in one shaking, rattling package. I guess they, or some similar technology will be waiting for generation after generation, except for the likes of Ultraman here whom time has ravaged beyond the renewal of another child’s laughter.

  2. Ultraman reminds me of my childhood. I mean, no people who were born in the 60’s to 80’s doesn’t know ultraman. He is probably the most iconic figure during that time. Although I am a girl, I did asked my mom to buy e an action figure of him and I still kept that until now.

    Riding on ultraman’s back while he flies is probably anybody’s dream, thus arcade rides such as this is a treasure. Too bad, kids nowadays hardly know him.

  3. Don’t know if you care to know, but that’s not Ultraman.. It’s a TOHO Tokusatsu kyodai hero known as Zone Fighter and came from a television series of the same name. He shook Godzillas hand in an episode of the show 🙂

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