Why Ultraman deserves to be banned — Alwyn Lau

MARCH 3 — I applaud the Home Ministry’s decision to ban the Ultraman comic. My only surprise why they didn’t do it earlier, like a hundred years ago. “Ultraman the Ultra Power”? The name doesn’t even sound right.

Honestly? It’s impossible to grasp (even fictionally) the concept of a building-sized spaceman out there who, for almost no reason at all, care about Earth’s well-being. Monsters which come from cracks in the depths of the ocean? Plausible.

Talking robots which hail from a cube-like planet and can turn into Proton Sagas’? Maybe. But really tall dudes with no expression, with no excess body fat, who can shoot electricity from their hands? C’mon la.

Another thing, I don’t believe Ultraman really cares about our planet. If he did, why doesn’t he live here?

And surely with his zillions of centuries of evolution, surely he can locate and destroy monsters before they land in Japan (and only Japan). It’s a conspiracy, I tell you. Ultraman actually HATES our blue orb, especially our cities. So he’s made a deal with some inter-galactic dinosaurs to turn Tokyo Metropolis (and places like that) into their personal playroom.

But there are two other reasons why I’m glad our KDN banned Ultraman:

1 Ultraman makes us lie to ourselves

Go watch one or two episodes. The final act will always involve a clash between (at least) one titan and our hero from outer-space, summoned in the nick of time - but somehow not before multiple blocks of residential or industrials areas are destroyed. What usually follows is a kungfu match with both Ultraman and the monster trading blows and wounds.

Then comes the climactic moment. Ultraman’s red button in the middle of his shirt — sorry, I meant body — right between his chest begins to blink. Not unlike a mini-siren. Kee-koo-kee-koo-kee-koo.

“Oh NO! That’s the sign that Ultraman is hurt and he can’t hold on much longer, so if he doesn’t win soon, this could spell the END OF ULTRAMAN!”

Seriously? I’ve been waiting for Ultraman to die, get buried and never be heard of again. But it never happens. In fact, sometimes I suspect that the red-light is a sign that victory is close at hand.

It’s a signal of good times ahead in the form of signal which stresses me out. In other words, Ultraman is so diabolical that even though I somehow “knew” that he would win, I chose not to know.

And I can’t stand all these half-lies and pretending. Ultraman should, in fact, learn from Barisan Nasional who gives us truth and reality with no frills, no lies, no smoke-screens. When Putrajaya supports making ‘Allah’ exclusive to Muslims, I know for a fact that it was based on purely theological and historical principles. All those Christians who are protesting it are the ones who are being selfish.

I mean, Christians have been using the word for only a short time (a few centuries before Islam emerged), so why not give it up entirely once you enter Malaysia? Makes perfect sense.

2 Ultraman appears to have no political agenda

Ultraman doesn’t wear a mask. His face is a mask. In fact, I fear his whole life is too good to be true.

Think about it. He shows up only to fight monsters, then he leaves. He doesn’t talk, doesn’t listen to music, doesn’t write books, doesn’t give speeches. He never gives advice, he doesn’t emote, cannot smile, hardly even gestures (except for some meaningless thumbs-up and a nod once in a while).

He doesn’t have an address, he doesn’t eat, he doesn’t do art, he has no concept of leisure, he doesn’t have romantic relationships – am I the only one who has a problem with that?! It’s just ultra-creepy, okay?!

And there’s something else. Ultraman has no political agenda whatsoever. I mean, what kind of dude risks his life, gets himself SEVERELY damaged and beaten up and continues doing so without asking what’s in it for him? At least the Predator does it for pride and Superman does it because his daddy encouraged him to do so. Ultraman just fights for Earth because, well, it’s there. Heck, it’s not even his job.

And I hate him for it. You know why? Because I don’t trust heroes with no political agenda at all; it reminds me too much of my beloved Barisan Nasional, whom I know are simply doing what they believe is best for the country with not a single inkling of gain or profit.

I know our Federal government is handled by folks who wear no masks. What we see is what we get.

Batman and Spider-man? They wear a mask to become super-heroes. Superman? He takes off the mask (of Clark Kent) to become Superman. Ultraman? He’s the worst – he wears a mask by NOT wearing a mask. He’s so pure, so honorable and so self-sacrificial I can’t believe he’s not hiding something. He must be lying to us, because only Barisan Nasional can be so other-focused, so principled and so upright.

Only Barisan Nasional’s actions are solely concerned with removing extremism in the country, with spurring economic growth, with ensuring that only wholesome reading material are allowed to enter Malaysian minds.

This sums up why I believe the Malaysian government is right to ban Ultraman: It’s because Ultraman is too much like Barisan Nasional.

And God knows we need to deal with people who cheat us.

* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malay Mail Online.

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