- (from "tokushu
satsuei") special photography, used to refer to Japanese science fiction
You probably will not hear the word tokusatsu actually used in the shows but fans will use the word when discussing them.
chanbara - sword fighting story, usually refers to movies and tv series about ninja or samurai or other warriors, however some early tokusatsu series mix sword fighting and science fiction. chanbara films and tv series are also known as "jidai geki" (period drama).
kyodai - huge, colossal, enormous; used to refer to giant heroes
sentai - a military term meaning taskforce or squadron
super sentai - series involving a team of heroes (usually but not always 5) rather than a single hero. All but two super sentai series feature giant robots fighting giant monsters. super sentai is a subset tokusatsu. All super sentai series are from Toei, but not all group hero series are considered super sentai.
metal heroes - a group of series by Toei from 1983 through 1996 which featured heroes who were either androids, cyborgs or humans wearing armor. similar series from before 1983 are not classified as metal heroes (why I don't know). metal heroes is a subset of tokusatu. Metal Heroes can be divided into the following sub groups: Space Sheriffs (Gavan,. Sharivan, Shaider), Alien/Space Heroes (Juspion, Spielban), Android/Robot Heroes. (Metalder, Jiban, Janperson), Rescue Heroes (Winspector, Solbrain, Exeedraft), Beetle. Fighters (Heavy Armor B-Fighter, B-Fighter Kabuto), Miscellaneous Metal Heroes. (Jiraiya, Blue Swat)
henshin hero - henshin means "transformation" or "transform", any series about a transforming hero or heroes that is not jidai geki, kyodai, sentai or metal hero falls in this category. henshin hero is a subset of tokusatsu.
There are tokusatsu series which do not fit in any of these sub categories, the early tokusatsu series featured heroes who did not henshin but were just wearing masks. Also there were several series that were not about super heroes fighting super villians at all but were more straight forward science fiction.
Some words commonly used in tokusatsu are:
aku - evil
akuma - devil or demon
baka - fool, idiot
bakudan - bomb
bakuhatsu - explode (explosive)
Chikyuu - Earth
chou - super
da da da - meaningless sound used in some theme songs, like "la la la" in English songs
dai - big, giant, great, large
dai kaiju - giant monster
dai kanbu - emminent chief, major officer
daijoubu - "are you OK?"
denji - electromagnetic
denki - electricity
ganbatte - "go for it", "go for broke", "good luck" - common hero cheer
gattai - to combine
go - the number 5 (sometimes though when characters say "go" the are using the English word)
gundan - army, army corps
hakai - to destroy
hakase - doctor
hassha - "FIRE!" (as in firing a weapon, mostly missiles)
hasshin - "launch"
hayaku - "hurry"
henshin - transform, tranformation
himistu - secret
ichi - the number 1
ikkuzoo - "Let's Go!"
jin - man, human
jinzo ningen - artificial human, mechanical man, android, robot
kaeru - frog, toad (most heroes fight a frog or toad monster)
kaibutsu - creature of abnormal form, wicked creature, monster
kaijin - mysterious person (used to refer to man sized monsters)
kaiju - mysterious creature, goblin, monster
kaizo ningen - reconstructed human, cyborg (most Kamen Riders and monsters they fight are kaizo ningen)
kame - tortoise, turtle (most heroes fight at least one tortoise or turtle monster)
kamen - mask, masked
kani - crab (most heroes fight a crab monster)
kaasan - mother
kaze - wind
ken - sword (usually samaurai)
kikai - machine
kisama - "you..." (a kind of insult)
kokoro - heart or spirit
koraa - "HEY YOU!!"
koroshi - kill, murder
matte - "wait" (often shouted by heroes chasing villains or villains chasing victims)
nage - throw (as in "Rider Nage", "Dai Sharin Nage")
nani - "what?"
neesan - older sister
ni - the number 2
nigero - "RUN!"
niisan - older brother
ningen - human, man
Oi - "HEY!"
okaasan - mother (honorific)
oneesan - older sister (honorific), often used by children when addressing any older female
oniisan - older brother (honorific), often usued by children when addressing any older male
onna - woman
onore - "you..." (a kind of insult)
osoru beki - formidable/dreadful (used in descriptions of enemies, weapons, etc.)
otoko - man (male)
otousan - father (honorific)
oyassan - pops (term of endearment), used often by Kamen Riders when adressing Tachibana, Tobei
robotto - robot
san - the number 3
seigi - justice
sensei - teacher, master, doctor, ancient sage
senshi - warrior, soldier
shimatta - "damn it!" (favorite tokusatu swear word)
shin - new or real (two words that sound the same, context will determine which it is)
shindeiru - dead
shine - "die!" (often shouted by monsters)
shinigami - death
shotai, shoutai - true form or shape
shuryou - chief, boss, leader
tasukete - "help!" (shouted by those about to be killed by the monster of the week)
tatakai - "fight" (spoken as a command and part of the title of several theme songs)
toh - a martial art kia (sound used to help focus energy and breathing), used by tokusatsu heroes (mostly Kamen Riders) when jumping
tousan - father
uchu - space
uragirimono - betrayer, traitor, turncoat
usei - star
wakatta - "got it"
yamero - "Stop it!"
yatta - "I did it!"
yokai - evil spirit or ghost
yon - the number 4
yosh(i) - "OK!", "all right!"
yuke - "go!"
NOTE: Japanese nouns are both singular and plural, the context in which it is used determines whether a noun is meant in the singular or the plural
NAMES - Japanese names are stated family name first. Keep this in mind when you hear a name. For example, the original Kamen Rider is named Hongo Takeshi. Hongo is the name of his family, Takeshi is his personal name. In the USA we might address him as "Mr Hongo". In Japan he'd be "Hongo-san".
Some popular names for males in Tokusatsu are:
Akira - glitter, sparkle, glisten, twinkle
Hiroshi - ocean
Ichiro - number 1 son
Jiro - number 2 son
Masaru - to excel, to surpass, to outrival
Takeshi - brave