Posted February 8, 2010 at 08:27 am
If you couldn't tell from the shirt that Kane is wearing in this first arc, I'm a huge Kamen Rider fan. In Japan, there's a genre of live-action television shows called Tokusatsu in which heroes transform into super-powered beings or don super-powered suits to battle monsters. As you might guess, this is a genre aimed at young kids. But as Tokusatsu is well beloved in Japan, the costumed heroes have fans young and old.

The Rider franchise began in 1971 with the first series, "Kamen Rider," which ran from 1971-1973 and spanned 98 episodes. Since then, there have been many Riders who have stepped up to defend the world against the forces of evil. The series is still running today with the current Rider, Kamen Rider W (also known as Double).

Igadevil's Kamen Rider Blog is seriously the best place to find the latest and greatest information about Kamen Rider. He's the biggest Rider fan I know. I've learned quite a bit about the history of the franchise from following his blog. Japan Hero has some great image galleries for most of the Riders (they're missing stuff for Kiva, Decade, and Double).

Back to the Kamen Rider influence on my comics, Kane's shirt is a combination of that famous Che Guevara image and Kamen Rider 1's mask. Kane's middle name and last name are also taken from Kamen Rider 1, Takeshi Hongo. My previous comic, Angry Zen Master, featured my own interpretation of Kamen Rider suits. So there's been a lot of Kamen Rider floating around in my work.