Muslim Malaysia Bans “Ultraman” so Kids Don’t Confuse Him with Allah

Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is a New York writer focusing on radical Islam. He is completing a book on the international challenges America faces in the 21st century.


Mebius_vs_Temperor

I really picture Allah more as the blue robot lobster in this picture, than Ultraman, but Malaysian kids are apparently more likely to think that the Muslim deity is a man in a really uncomfortable jogging suit than a giant blue monster.

Malaysia has banned a translation of an Ultraman comic book after it referred to the popular Japanese superhero as “Allah”, authorities said Friday, during an ongoing row over use of the word by non-Muslims.

The home ministry, which is in charge of domestic security and censorship, said the Malay-language edition of “Ultraman, The Ultra Power” contains elements that can undermine public order and morals.

A government representative confirmed the ban. In a statement on Friday, the Home Affairs Ministry said that because “Ultraman is idolized by many children,” equating the lead character, Ultraman King, with Allah would especially “confuse Muslim children and damage their faith.”

It further warned that irresponsible use of the word can provoke Muslims and threaten public safety.

Maybe Ultraman can stop the Muslim threat to public safety. Muslim governments certainly don’t intend to.

If Malaysian children do trade up from Allah to Ultraman, it will increase public safety because Ultraman fans don’t try to kill people. Also Ultraman fights monsters, while Allah’s followers fight all non-Muslims and even other Muslims.

Ultramanthrow

Let’s compare and contrast Allah and Ultraman.

  • Ultraman’s superpowers include Ultra Punch (ウルトラパンチ Urutora Panchi): This is a basic punch, but since Ultraman possesses super-humanoid physical strength, it “has the power of 50 Indian elephants.”
  • Allah’s superpowers include 72 Virgins: This tricks his followers into killing for him in the hope that they will receive 72 virgins.
  • Ultraman’s superpowers Ultra Separation (ウルトラセパレーション Urutora Separēshon?): In the 1996 movie Revive! Ultraman, Ultraman created four duplicates of himself to fight various monsters simultaneously.
  • Allah’s superpowers include followers who will kill anyone who makes fun of him because they hope to receive 72 virgins.
  • Ultraman’s greatest weakness is “Since Earth’s atmosphere leeches away his solar energy, Ultraman can only physically exist on Earth for approximately three to five minutes of Earth time.”
  • Allah’s greatest weakness is that he was a story made up by a 7th century Arabian warlord and cannot exist on Earth for even 1 second.

By my calculations, to defeat Allah, Ultraman will have to convince Muslims in 3-5 minutes that the 72 virgins don’t actually exist.

The decision has led to widespread ridicule among Malaysian Facebook and Twitter users — including from Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin, who asked “Apa salah Ultraman? (What wrong did Ultraman do?)”

The controversial line can be seen in an image available on social media that describes Ultraman: “He is considered, and respected, as Allah or the Elder to all Ultra heroes.”

The Ultraman ban is the latest example of growing hard-line religious conservatism under the country’s United Malays National Organization–led government. Earlier this year, authorities in Selangor raided a church and seized more than 300 Bibles that officials claimed referred to God as Allah in the Malay language.

Malaysia desperately needs Ultraman.

3163525-2618766129-ultra

Now this guy on the left looks a lot like Allah.

  • DogmaelJones1

    This would be too funny for words, except that the Malaysian government is dead serious. Maybe some enterprising cartoonist can dream up an enemy of Ultraman, called “UltraJihadist” or “Wonder Burqa.” No, wait, Marvel Comics has a corner of those.

    • Daniel Greenfield

      Maybe Bosch can come up with something

      • DogmaelJones1

        I’ll forward the link to him. Thanks for the idea.

  • DogmaelJones1

    And don’t forget: Allah’s superpowers include 72 renewable virgins per martyr. That’s quite a trick. Ask any real life ex-virgin. Ultraman couldn’t match that power.

    • truebearing

      With that pink suit, I’m not sure Ultraman cares about 72 virgins.

  • De Doc

    Before the “Power Rangers, before the “Transformers” there was Ultraman! I can see why Malaysia worries so much about this Allah like figure…

    • Daniel Greenfield

      He’s a much snappier dresser than Mohammed. And much cooler.

  • Anukem Jihadi

    Spectreman blows all the competition away and comes complete with idolatrous golden head.
    http://youtu.be/6Go20zZt00E

    • Daniel Greenfield

      But he seems kind of depressed

      • Anukem Jihadi

        I suppose his face is a bit frozen but maybe that’s just an expression of his inner Zen state.

        • DogmaelJones1

          “It” looks like a rejected idea sketch for the Tin Man for The Wizard of Oz. Or an early Star Trek nemesis that Kirk had to battle.

          • Anukem Jihadi

            Dude, Tokyo just got gassed. Have some respect. What do you think this is? Happy Days?
            Spectreman was kicking butt and taking names before Ultraman was out of dayglow diapers.

  • AZ

    Islamists are narcistic and oversexed. Beware of ppl with that combination !

  • Dyer’s Eve

    Ha ha! I love it! I like the last contrasting point between Allah and Ultraman; Allah’s greatest weakness is that he was a story made up by a 7th century Arabian warlord and cannot exist on Earth for even 1 second.
    Allah is just another fairytail that came from a time when people were ignorant, superstitious and uneducated. Imagine if someone got up and proclaimed himself to be god’s messenger today? He’d be bottled off the stage and beaten up in a back alley! And deservedly so.

  • CaoMoo

    I loved Ultraman as a kid. Next muslims should ban breathing as it steals air from Allah.

    • SF Gal

      Wouldn’t be surprised. They’ve already banned driving (for women) and listening to music (“stringed” instruments are a form of temptation). There ain’t nothing like bat-shoo crazy!!!

  • Evan

    While I think the ban on Ultraman is ridiculous, I also find this article to have a very poor depiction of Islam and Muslims. Seriously, all “Allah” is is “God” in Arabic. Only reason most English speaking Muslims say Allah is because it is a case of preservation. Not to mention Ultraman is a clearly fictional character. But even with all of that, lets get a couple of things straight: 1. THERE ARE NO 72 VIRGINS IN ISLAM. 2. Muhammad wasn’t a war lord. He was an orphan raised by a nomadic tribe. Did he fight, yes? But only when other countries turned their back on peace treaties he signed (and hand printed). Kind of pisses me off when two things I care about a lot – my favorite genre of entertainment and my God – are done injustice to like that.

    • Daniel Greenfield

      Malaysia’s Muslim authorities insist that Allah is exclusive to Islam. Take it up with them.

      1. The 72 virgins are in the Quran, 56.36. They’re just not numbered.

      2. Mohammed commanded a band of robbers and ruled territory. He was a warlord. He wasn’t fighting other countries, but engaging in the ethnic cleansing and mass murder of other religions.

      • hiernonymous

        “The 72 virgins are in the Quran, 56.36. They’re just not numbered.”

        If they’re not numbered, then “the 72 Virgins” aren’t in the Qur’an.
        There certainly is a reference to the virgin women of Paradise in the Qur’an, but when you introduce extraneous material such as claiming that there are 72 of them, you can’t claim Qur’anic authority for it.

        • Daniel Greenfield

          Your trolling is getting old and boring.

          The current number of Congressmen isn’t in the Constitution. Congress is.

          The exact number of virgins isn’t in the Koran. The institution of virgins in Islamic paradise are.

          • hiernonymous

            “The exact number of virgins isn’t in the Koran. The institution of virgins in Islamic paradise are.”

            That’s correct. Why didn’t you say that the first time? You inserted the 72 for a reason – presumably you find it a bit ridiculous. You then defended it as being in the Qur’an, and stopped being correct.

            “Your trolling is getting old and boring.”

            And?

          • Daniel Greenfield

            “Trolling” is generally a term that applies to those who try to provoke emotional responses, and don’t really care about the issues involved.”

            That’s a reasonable good summary of your antics. This conversation is a case in point.

            “That’s correct. Why didn’t you say that the first time?”

            “1. The 72 virgins are in the Quran, 56.36. They’re just not numbered.”

          • hiernonymous

            “That’s a reasonable good summary of your antics. This conversation is a case in point.”

            It would seem odd for someone who spends as much time as you do offering opinions in public to consider challenges to those opinions to be either “antics” or to be aimed at provoking ‘emotional’ responses. I’m generally looking for factual support and a sound underlying logical structure, not emoting. While I can understand that having your opinions challenged can be frustrating, that doesn’t mean that instilling frustration is the purpose of pointing them out, or even that your frustration is a reason not to do so.

            It’s possible that you’re misinterpreting my posts, though. At one point, you insisted that I’d been denouncing the Republican Party, which I didn’t recall having done; when I asked you to provide an example of a post you so interpreted, you would not do so. Later, you accused me of insulting you; when I asked how I’d done so, you declined to respond. When you don’t elaborate on your complaints, it’s hard for me to evaluate them.

            At any rate, I frequently take issue with your facts and logic; I don’t see responding to that as “trolling.” Nor, judging by the frequency with which you initiate contact with me, do you.

            “1. The 72 virgins are in the Quran, 56.36. They’re just not numbered.”

            Right, that’s what you said. Better would have been “the Qur’an mentions virgins at 56:36, with no mention of their number. The whole ’72 virgins’ idea came later.” Presumably we both understand what is and isn’t in the Qur’an now, and there’s no further need for disagreement.

  • SF Gal

    Another great article. Must remember to not read your articles early in the morning so that I don’t wake the neighbors with my incessant laughing.

    • Daniel Greenfield

      If you’re in San Fran, they probably need a wake up call anyway.