ULTRA SEVEN EXHIBITION in Tokyo
Author: Daisuke Ishizuka
After opening at Fukuoka, Kyushu in March, the ULTRA SEVEN EXHIBITION finally came to the Mitsukoshi department store in Nihonbashi, Tokyo from July 24-August 5, 2013.
I think the promoter of the 45TH ANNIVERSARY ULTRA SEVEN EXHIBITION was strongly influenced by the number “7”. The exhibition started July (the 7th month), the exhibition was held on the 7th floor of the department store and the admission fee was ¥700.
In the past, there have been exhibitions devoted to the Ultra series (or particular eras of the franchise), but this is first to focus on only one TV series or character. There were only a few original props remaining from the original ULTRA SEVEN (ウルトラセブン, Urutorasebun, 1967-1968) show, and most of them are now terribly damaged. Therefore, mainly replicas of props were displayed at this event.
Most interesting for me was seeing the original designs by Mr. Ryosaku Takayama. He was a monster suit creator and his designs were drawn with measurements for making the suits. He also drew designs show the suit actors how to wear the monster costumes.
The ULTRA SEVEN scripts were also interesting because I could learn about the history of the series. The project was named “Ultra Eye” at the beginning and then changed to “Red Man”. Some early scripts were even printed with the title Red Man. Finally, the name of hero became “Ultra Seven”.
I always wondered why one of Ultra Seven’s key weapons was named the “Eye Slugger”. I though it should named “Seven slugger”, but this was a concept from “Ultra Eye” that was used for ULTRA SEVEN.
The main cast of ULTRA SEVEN — Mr. Koji Moritsugu (Ultra Seven’s alter ego, Dan Moroboshi), Mr. Iyoshi Ishii (Shigeru Furuhashi), Mr. Satoshi Furuya (Amagi) and Ms. Yuriko Hishimi (Anne Yuri) — also contributed to the ULTRA SEVEN EXHIBITION. They lent some items from their personal collections… I recognized a large size TDF Pointer and Mr. Moritsugu’s autobiography original cover art from my visit to Mr. Moritsugu’s restaurant, Joli Chapeau.
The final area of the of the exhibition featured a suit display of four members of the Ultra Seven “family”: Ultra Seven, his son Ultraman Zero, Ultra Seven 21 from ULTRAMAN NEOS (ウルトラマンネオス, Urutoraman Neosu, 2000-2001) and Ultraseven X. Photography was allowed in this area, and many fans took photos with the four Ultra Seven-type heroes.