Iron King

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Iron King
Iron King-title.jpg
Iron King title card
Format Science fiction, action, adventure
Created by Mamoru Sasaki
Directed by Noriaki Yuasa
Starring Shōji Ishibashi
Mitsuo Hamada
Country of origin Japan
No. of episodes 26
Production
Running time 24 minutes (per episode)
Broadcast
Original channel TBS
Original run October 8, 1972 – April 8, 1973

Iron King (アイアンキング Aian Kingu?) is a tokusatsu superhero TV series about a giant cyborg. The series was produced by Nippon Gendai and Senkosha (now Senko Planning), and aired on Tokyo Broadcasting System from October 8, 1972 to April 8, 1973, with a total of 26 episodes.

Plot description[edit]

The Shiranui Clan have planned for 2000 years to conquer Japan in retaliation for their nomadic ancestors being banished from the country by the Yamato Clan (who eventually became known as the Japanese people). Each armored ninja-like member of the clan controls a gigantic robot warrior in order to overthrow the "Yamato Government," as they call it.

In response to this terrorist threat, Japan's National Security Organization send agent Gentaro Shizuka (pop star Shoji Ishibashi), disguised as what can best described as a Spaghetti Western version of a singing cowboy, to stop their plans with the assistance of comical, mountaineering-clad Goro Kirishima (Mitsuo Hamada). In an unusual direction for such tokusatsu (visual effects) programs, it is not the heroic but often surprisingly ruthless Gentaro but the bumbling, bespectacled Goro who has the power to become the giant cybernetic superhero Iron King by touching the medals on the sides of his funny red Turning Hat and shouting "Iron Shock!" when danger threatens.

However, often Iron King is unable to defeat the clan's giant robots without help from Gentaro, who wields a weapon called the Iron Belt that can become a slender rapier-like sword or an infinitely extendable metal whip capable of hurting giant monsters. In addition, transforming into the hydrogen oxide-powered Iron King quickly dehydrates Goro, and he can only remain as Iron King for a short period of time. Strangely, although Gentaro knows Iron King's time limit comes from using up his water supply he never manages to connect it with Goro's omnipresent thirst until the final episode.

In the tenth episode the Shiranui Clan is destroyed but their place is taken by the skull-symboled keffiyeh-clad Phantom Militia (A/K/A the Phantom Opposition Party) who also use giant robots to enact their revolution against the Japanese government, although rather than being humanoid in shape theirs take the form of dinosaur-like kaiju.

From the nineteenth episode to the end of the series Gentaro and Goro battle V For Vendetta-like black cloak and Puritan hat-clad white-masked aliens called Titanians who have various inhuman powers such as flight, body-possessing mind control and the ability to enlarge themselves to giant size. Upon doing the latter they are then able to assume insect-like monster forms.

Episode list[edit]

# Title[1] Guest cast Director First aired Monster appeared
1. Secret Messenger of the Morning Wind
朝風の密使
Shinzo Hotta
Kiro Abe
Fudeko Tanaka
Kinji Takinami
Hiroshi Ikaida
Shozo Tamura 1972-10-08 Vacumira
2. The Swan in the Ruins
廃墟の白鳥
Shinzo Hotta
Hiroshi Ikaida
Shozo Tamura 1972-10-15 Jairogesu
3. The Warrior's Smile
戦士の微笑
Shinzo Hotta
Hiroshi Ikaida
Shozo Tamura 1972-10-22 Double Satan
4. Gentaro Travels Alone
弦太郎孤独旅
Shinzo Hotta
Yosuke Akimoto
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1972-10-29 Devil Tiger
5. The Duel in the Autumn Wind
秋風の中の決斗
Shinzo Hotta
Shogo Hanagi
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1972-11-05 Black Knight, Bronze Demon, Monster Bird
6. Lullaby for a Warrior
戦士の子守唄
Shinzo Hotta
Seishiro Kuno
Masayuki Tobuyo
Shozo Tamura 1972-11-12 Monster Bird
7. Those That Fly the Skies
大空を征く者
Shinzo Hotta
Kaori Seki
Hisashi Kato
Shozo Tamura 1972-11-19 Silver Rider
8. The Shadow Area
影の地帯
Shinzo Hotta
Mitsuko Hoshi
Yoshinori Furukawa
Shinobu Miura
Noriaki Yuasa 1972-11-26 Gold Fire
9. Gentaro in a Close Shave
弦太郎危機一髪!
Shinzo Hotta
Yuki Ikazaki
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1972-12-03 Gold Fire
10. A Kiss for the Dead
死者へのくちづけ
Katsumi Muramatsu
Shima Mizue
Kiyoshi Tokugawa
Gin Minemura
Hiroshi Fukuhara 1972-12-10 Gold Fire, Zaira Unicorn
11. Tokyo Is Burning
東京は燃えている
Katsumi Muramatsu
Kiyoshi Tokugawa
Gin Minemura
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1972-12-17 Zaira Unicorn
12. State of Emergency in Tokyo
東京非常事態宣言
Katsumi Muramatsu
Teresa Noda
Junko Natsu
Wataru Mitsui
Ikuo Kosaka
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1972-12-24 Tongazaurus
13. Attacking the Underground Fortress
地下要塞攻撃命令
Katsumi Muramatsu
Junko Natsu
Wataru Mitsui
Isamu Matsuzawa
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1972-12-31 Tongazaurus
14. Secret of the Brainwave Robot
脳波ロボットの秘密
Katsumi Muramatsu
Hijiri Matsuki
Teppei Takasugi
Kazuo Arai
Hiromu Edagawa 1973-01-14 Jurassdon
15. Marathon Monster Capri-Gon
マラソン怪獣カプリゴン
Katsumi Muramatsu
Masahiro Takashina
Harue Kyo
Hiromu Edagawa 1973-01-21 Caprigon
16. Destroy Tora-Girasu!
トラギラスを倒せ!
Katsumi Muramatsu
Yumi Mizusawa
Hiromu Edagawa 1973-01-28 Toragilas
17. The Order to Assassinate Iron King
アイアンキング殺害命令
Katsumi Muramatsu
Chidori Tashiro
Koetsu Omiya
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1973-02-04 Dodzilla, Kumagross
18. Monster Robot Annihilation
ロボット怪獣全滅作戦
Katsumi Muramatsu
Eiko Ogawa
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1973-02-11 Kumagross
19. The Giant Bug Kabutoron Appears
大虫人カブトロン出現
Chiaki Ukyo
Hajime Izu
Hiroshi Fukuhara 1973-02-18 Kabutoron
20. The Titanians Strike Back
宇虫人タイタニアンの逆襲
Chiaki Ukyo Hiroshi Fukuhara 1973-02-25 Kabutoron
21. Kama Guras Wants Lethal Gas!
カマギュラス殺人ガスを狙う
Chiaki Ukyo
Mari Sakurai
Tetsuya Sano
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1973-03-04 Kamagyrus
22. Terrifying Titanian Underworld
恐怖のタイタニアン地獄
Chiaki Ukyo
Fumio Ikeda
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1973-03-11 Kirigirin
23. The Insect Humanoid Masquerades as a Woman
女に化けた虫人
Chiaki Ukyo
Ryoko Sakaguchi
Hideo Saito
Shozo Tamura 1973-03-18 Kangarole
24. Tokyo Assault Frontline Base
東京攻撃前線基地
Chiaki Ukyo
Yoku Shioya
Hiroshi Fukuhara 1973-03-25 Cockroachaur
25. Iron King in a Panic!
アイアンキング大ピンチ!
Chiaki Ukyo Tetsuro Sotoyama 1973-04-01 Cricketton, Possessed Iron King
26. The Great Tokyo War
東京大戦争
Chiaki Ukyo
Hajime Izu
Tetsuro Sotoyama 1973-04-08 Cricketton, Possessed Iron King

DVD releases[edit]

Cover to the 2007 DVD release

On November 6, 2007, BCI Eclipse released the complete series on DVD in Region 1.[2] As of 2009, this release is now out of print as BCI Eclipse ceased operations.

On March 9, 2010, Mill Creek Entertainment re-released the entire series on DVD in Region 1.[3]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Ragone, August (2007). The Super Hero Samurai Spaghetti Western. Ronin Entertainment. 
  2. ^ "Iron King - The Complete Series". TVShowsOnDVD.com. Retrieved 2007-11-28. 
  3. ^ http://www.amazon.com/Iron-King-Various/dp/B00310PSTY

References[edit]

External links[edit]