tokusatsu-l Mailing List Frequently Asked Questions

Release: December, 1997 (Version: 3.6.8)

General Information

1.1 Introduction

Welcome to tokusatsu-l, the mailing list dedicated to the discussion of the Japanese genre that combines martial arts, special effects and great hero costumes all into one out-standing 40+ year tradition. This list is for anyone who enjoys watching sentai, metal heros (be it the Space Sheriffs, Police Inspectors or B-Fighters), Ultraman or Kamen Riders. To post to this list, e-mail [email protected] (for information on how to post without looking foolish, see Section 1.4 "Proper Etiquette (Netiquette)").

Even though new FAQs will be posted at least once a month whenever there is new information, please keep this document where you may refer to it again. If you lose your copy, keep in mind or write down that you may obtain a current version as a subscriber by e-mailing with info tokusatsu-l in the body of the message (see Section 1.3 "FAQ Availability" for more information on obtaining this document).

To un-subscribe from this list, DO NOT e-mail [email protected]! e-mail with: un-subscribe tokusatsu-l in the body of the message (majordomo does not read anything listed in the Subject field).

NOTE: The l in tokusatsu-l refers to the lower-case letter L and not the number one (1) or the upper-case letter I. Some fonts make l look like 1 and/or I.

1.2 New and/or Updated Information this Version

1.3 F.A.Q. Document Availability

This document will be posted at least once a month whenever new information is added to it (if no new information is added, it wont be posted). It is available via e-mail to subscribers by e-mailing: with nothing in the Subject: field and info tokusatsu-l in the body of the message. It should look like this:

To: [email protected]


info tokusatsu-l


("End" tells majordomo to stop looking for commands.)

The FAQ is also available via FTP and World Wide Web. Using FTP (e.g., NcFTP for UNIX, WS_FTP for Windows or Fetch for Macintosh), use anonymous UNIX login to and download the file tokusatsu-l.FAQ from the users/piero directory.

You can use a web browser such as Lynx for VT102 terminal UNIX workstations; NCSA's Mosaic", Netscape® Communications, Inc.'s Netscape Navigator or Microsoft® Internet Explorer" for Windows or Macintosh, to access this FTP sites via a World Wide Web style URL:

If you got this web page via a link and you want the URL, bookmark this link or write down that to reach the HTML version of the tokusatsu-l FAQ, start-up

1.4 Proper Etiquette (Netiquette)

It is within your best interest to read this document, in its entirey, prior to asking questions. This document does its best to answer all questions that have been asked numerous times by those new to the genre. If you are going to answer anyone's question, please try to be as accurate as possible and offer information no one else has previously mentioned.

Conversation on the mailing list is encouraged, however, members expect those posting to be intelligent, reasonable and polite. If you have nothing to say of interest to anyone but the person you are replying to, please send _private_ e-mail instead. This may be accomplished by NOT replying to the address you are prompted to reply to but to the original sender. This rule also applies if you have nothing to add but a message saying "I agree" or some other words meaning this.

Avoid arguments (not debating arguments, but angry words). It is difficult to make the distinction between discussion and arguments. However it is obvious when a person is attacking a person rather than what it is that they are saying. People will forgive an angry post or two as long as it is intelligent, reasonable and polite.

If you have fan-fiction, due to the e-mail strictions of some of our subscribers, please only announce your material on the list. Include a breif summary (approximatley 25 lines or less) along with where they are available (what URL is needed to download the story either on the web or via FTP, et cetera).

The list administrator asks that profanity (especially that which is not allowed on American television) be kept to a minimum (as many minors use this mailing list and it would awkward to deal with parents whom are sensitive about the material their child reads). You can also use an asterik ( * or some other symbol) in place of vowels. Please do not mistake this as request to censor the content of the mailing list; it is merely a recommendation to reduce the potential for misunderstanding and the various circumstances that may arrise from such misunderstandings.

When responding to a thread, please be sure to reference the correct subject so that others will understand that the posts are releated. If the content of your post is greatly different than from the original topic, please re-name the subject of your post with (was "the old threat subject title") following your new title. For example:

Does Bandai make toys of monsters?  (was "re: Favorite kaijin")

When using a portion of another post in your own post (quoting), please be sure to _only_ include the lines of the message that pertain to what you are replying to. DO NOT quote the entire message and insert your text where you are responding. If there is a section of text from the original post that you are not going to answer, delete it. This adds unnecessary length to your e-mail to the list.

Flames (vengeful messages), trolls (posts with deliberately false information) and spam (advertisements, especially commercial, or cross-posts from unrelated newsgroups or mailing lists) are considered inappropriate and in bad taste and form. Be aware that some software does not allow for the correction of misspellings or the editing of posts (short of starting over). _Never_ correct the spelling or grammar of anyone's post in a public reply. E-mail the author directly and be prepared to converse fluently in their native language if it turns out that English is not their native language. Additionally, it would be honorable to be civil when pointing out such mistakes.

No personal attacks should be made upon a fellow poster (by name, nickname or address) in your posts. If you disagree with another person's opinion, write that person via e-mail to discuss your personal differences and DO NOT post your disputes/arguments/flames. You are free to post your own opinion as a separate post by itself, however.

If you disagree with the content of someone else's post as incorrect or inappropriate and you have _facts_ to support your claim, or wish to discuss it further on the mailing list (and can do so _without_ defaming the original poster), feel free to respond. Please use the rules of logic and common sense as well as common courtesy.

Remember... Words, especially in the English language, have more than one meaning. And they are apt to be misinterpreted; especially by those who are speaking English not as a native language. You may wish to ask the original poster if you are correct in assuming what you believe they are saying is true.

In the event the content of a post is blatant flame, personal attack, business advertisement or, otherwise, an inappropriate messages to the mailing list: DO NOT REPLY TO THE POST ON THE MAILING LIST. Politely inform the poster (via e-mail) that such posts are not permitted and to discontinue such activity. By responding to these occurances by e-mail, instead of on the mailing list, we are able to allow the post to die in a relatively short periodd of time.

The event spam is received, forward a copy of their advertisement to [email protected] (ie., [email protected] it came from that provider); they will deal with their user doing this. If the address is false (such as: [email protected]), enable "full headers" in your mail program, if possible, and check for the &quotReceived By" or "X-sender" line. This should have the actual host or IP Address (an address that looks like where this garbage originated from. By performing a 'nslookup' from a UNIX Shell, you can lookup the IP Address and then execute the 'whois' command from this shell as well. This way you can know who the actual provider is that is this spammer internet access. Again--forward the copy of his/her advertisement to abuse or [email protected]

Finally, please do not post with .sig (signature) files longer than 3-6 lines. Again this is to be courteous to subscribers with limited disk space for their e-mail storage.

A very special thanks to Wendy Green for her misc.writing posting guide, inspiring the expansion of this section. This section was written without her permission, however, this is because it appears as if she no longer has internet access (her e-mail address doesn't work anymore). Should Green reappear and request this section be re-written to neglect her material or to have it truncated entirely, the author of this document will comply.

1.5 Legal Disclaimer

This document is Copyright ©1997 Dairenn Lombard and may not be repackaged, edited, released, distributed, or used for-profit without consent of the current maintainer. This includes, but is not limited to: CD-ROMs, magazines, books, newspapers, or television broadcasts. Free distribution is encouraged provided the document is unabridged, unmodified, and unaltered.

This copyright does not extend to, and is not intended to infringe upon, the characters, names, and related indica of all television and motion-picture titles named herein which remain a registered trademark and copyright of Toei Company LTD, TV-Asahi, Asahi Tsushinsha, Ishimori Productions, Saban Entertainment, DIC Entertainment and others.

The information in this document has been checked where appropriate, and is considered as accurate as possible. However, nobody's perfect. As such, the author and future maintainers take no responsibility for incorrect or inaccurate information beyond correcting the error in the next official release.

1.6 Frequently Used Acronyms, Abbreviations and Terminology

jAPANESE ANIMATED MOVIES OR TELEVISION programs intended for young to young adult Japanese audiences within Japan. Some examples include Akira, Ranma, Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon, etc.
binary, binaries
1. Text to be decoded into a binary file such as GIF, Jpeg, WAV or Mpeg to be displayed or played using appropriate software. 2. A compiled executable computer file.
MicroSoft Windows" BitMaP file. Gigantic low-resolution 16-256 Color files used as "wallpaper" in Windows and not considered a practical means of transporting true-to-life images over any computer network. [acro.]
A homemade production of a previously copyrighted recording.
Voice actors/actresses and re-recorded music replacing the original audio linear track. This method is used to replace Japanese dialogue with English. Short for over-dubbed (dub being a recording studio term for copy).
For Sale. Users wishing to sell to users on tokusatsu-l should use this to begin the Subject: line in their post to the mailing list. Additionally, it should be followed by the nature of your request. (e.g., FS: DAIRANGER Mecha Toys.).
Metamorphisis. To change states or transform.
In My Opinion. [acro.]
In My Honest Opinion. [acro.]
Internet Relay Chat. One of the major services of Internet on Port 6667 that allows for live chat all over the world. Started in 1988, it gained popularity in 1991 during the Golf War. The three current major networks are EFnet, Undernet (started in 1992) and DALnet (started in 1994). MS-Windows" users should visit to obtain mIRC, the Windows IRC Client; Apple Macintosh users may visit for ircle, the Mac IRC Client. UNIX users should ask their system administrator whether or not they have ircII compiled on their system. If not, you will need to obtain a copy for yourself to compile. See Section 6.4. [acro.]
Graphics Interchange Format (by CompuServe), an image file type. Employs 256 colors for life-like display of photographs and computer generated graphs, logos, etc. [acro.]
Literally, it means warped or perverted. The genre describes an adult version of anime (it looks just like anime, except involves a great deal of explicit nudity and sexuality). The genre exists exclusively on rentals and occationally late night Japanese television.
American slang for anime.
Jpeg, an image file type (uses lossy-compression to display 16.7 million colors). Typically smaller than GIFs. [acro.]
Laughing Out Loud. The abbreviated equivalent to "Hehehe!" [acro.]
Moving Pictures Experts Group. An association responsible for the creation of the MPEG Video & Audio format. Typically saved as an .MPG or .MP3 file, they are used to display high-quality video and audio clips. [acro.]
The direct translation to english, it means geek or nerd. However, it implies, among english-speaking fans, "enthusiast". i.e., tokusatsu otaku implies a fan of children's SFX series'. [adj.]
On The Other Hand. [acro.]
PC Paintbrush format. Universal graphics format for IBM-PCs. Capable of displaying up to 16.7 million colors without compression. [acro.]
Portable Network Graphics format. Created to facilitate lossless compression of 16.7 million colors without dependence on any one platform. A conceivable replacement for both Jpeg and GIF. PNG was requested due to Unisys requesting royalty payments from software vendors creating programs which utilize the LZH Compression algorithm that GIF files use.
To bring a television series or motion-picture originally filmed in or intended for a specific country to another. Such as the NA (North American) port of Sailor Moon from Japan's Bishoujo Senshi Sailor Moon.
Released in April 1995 by Progressive Networks. Uses RealMedia Architecture (RMA) capable of encoding a one minute recording of CD Quality WAV files normally 10.1 megabytes into a 586 kilobyte RealAudio file. See WAV. [trademark]
Rolling On The Floor Laughing. Equivalent to saying "Hahaha!" [acro.]
Request For Trade. Users wishing to buy from users on tokusatsu-l should use this to begin the Subject: line in their post to the mailing list. Additionally, it should be followed by the nature of your request. (e.g., RFT: Gavan tapes for OHRANGER episodes).
A process of acquiring the rights to previously filmed footage, editing it to be spliced into a different television program and altering the meaning of events occurring in previously the filmed footage (i.e., Mighty Morphin Power Rangers). {p.t.: Sabanized} [slang]
1. Naval Squadron (pre-war Japanese term). 2. Sub-genre of tokusatsu beginning in 1975 with Himitsu Sentai GORANGER (Secret Task Force Five Rangers). See Section 4.1 for more information.
On-Screen text presenting translated (usually English) dialogue leaving audio-track (music and original vocal performance) intact. Short for subtitled.
Toei Company, Limited or Toei Doga (Toei Animation). A Japanese motion-picture and animation studio dominant in the Japanese market (including the ownership of all their own theaters throughout Japan). For the purposes of copyrights, Toei and Toei Doga are separate entities, however, they are attached to the same corporate giant.
(t'oh-koo-s'at-soo) Special Photography (Special Effects). Refers to the genre of super-powered heros that usually transform (see henshin) into uniform. These programs make extensive use of special effects, martial arts, models and costumes.
TV Asahi, Terebi Asahi
(tear'a-bee, ah-s'ah-hee)
A Japanese Television Network that usually airs most sentai's, metal heros and anime's (though anime's air across almost all Japanese television networks). Formerly known as "NET" (Nihon Educational Television). Long ago, all Japanese networks showed tokusatsu sometimes in the same time slot.
WAVE Table Synthesis, popular sound file format. Capable of playing between 4kHz and 44.1kHz (Telephone Quality to CD Quality) of uncompressed audio on multimedia home computer systems (equipped with speakers and a sound card). Not particularly desirable to transport of lengthy recordings due to massive disk storage requirements. [acro]
Want To Buy. Users wishing to buy from users on tokusatsu-l should use this to begin the Subject: line in their post to the mailing list. Additionally, it should be followed by the nature of your request. (e.g., WTB: ZYURANGER Music CD).

This page was last updated on December 1, 1997

Copyright ©1997 Dairenn Lombard ()
All Rights Reserved.