Let's start with Gingaman.
Seijuu Sentai Gingman (1998-9) is the first Super Sentai title that I consciously remember watching.
This is probably because:
- Shoei, who played Gouki (Ginga Blue), became popular a few years after that so he remained intact in my memory.
- Hikaru (Ginga Yellow) was my super favorite.
- Super tacky 90s 'fantasy' costumes.
That's a really terrible and rough summary, so please wiki it for details.
So they were staying at a farm. And they had horses. I remember with vivid clarity of having a Ginga Yellow figurine that came with a toy horse. A. TOY. HORSE. It looked pretty fab, to be honest. That was super cool for me. Despite being the perfect age for it (8 years old), I'm a girl, and Super Sentai isn't for girls. And I was totally into Gingaman more than my brother (who was about 6 but still the right age for Super Sentai). Maybe it was the whole animal theme of this title, but it was really easy for me to get into.
What also stood out was the craziness of their outfits. Not the power suits - their 'regular clothes'. They were all vivid colors and clunky tribal patterns and so obviously weirdly artificial in the cheesy 90s way (despite the premise that they're a magical nature-based tribe). It stood out so much from the rest of the 'modern' setting. I can't explain why or how, but goodness I loved Hikaru's outfit.
(I might even say that Hikaru might've been my first TV crush, but that's here nor there.)
So yup, visuals are really crucial. And if you're in the 90s, tacky costumes can really work to your advantage in grabbing eyeballs (in a non-sarcastic way). Really, I still dig Hikaru's outfit. So much. And I love Gingaman because of the absolutely cute and lighthearted concept (in the first-half, at least), and the brightness brought on by them tacky costumes. Also horses.
In my opinion, Gingaman is an example of being happy and lighthearted isn't a bad way to go even in aspirational shows like the Super Sentai titles.
I'll rant more about the "aspirational" element some time soon...