Steel Jeeg

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Kotetsu Jeeg
Kotetsu Jeeg DVD Vol5.jpg
Kotetsu Jeeg DVD vol.5
鋼鉄ジーグ
(Kōtetsu Jīgu)
Genre Mecha
Anime television series
Directed by Masayuki Akihi
Written by Hiroyasu Yamaura, Keisuke Fujikawa, Toyohiro Ando
Studio Toei Doga
Network NET (now TV Asahi)
Original run October 5, 1975August 29, 1976
Episodes 46
Manga
Written by Go Nagai
Illustrated by Tatsuya Yasuda
Published by Kodansha
Magazine TV Magazine
Otomodachi*
Original run August 1975June 1976
Volumes 2
Notes

Only a few stories were published in Otodomachi, but they are included in the tankōbon.

Steel Jeeg (鋼鉄ジーグ Kōtetsu Jīgu?), more commonly known as Kotetsu Jeeg or Koutetsu Jeeg, is a super robot anime and manga series created by manga artists Go Nagai and Tatsuya Yasuda. The anime TV series was produced by Toei Doga (now Toei Animation). It was first broadcast on Japanese TV in 1975. The series lasted for 46 episodes. Steel Jeeg also ran as a manga in several children's publications.

A sequel series called Kotetsushin Jeeg (which appears to take place 50 years after the original show) aired on the satellite network WOWOW, beginning April 5, 2007.[1]

Story[edit]

Hiroshi Shiba is a young car racer who is mortally wounded. His father Professor Shiba, a talented scientist and archaeologist, manages to restore him to life by means of a powerful relic from the ancient and mysterious Jamatai Kingdom, a bronze bell which is hidden inside Hiroshi's body and turns him unknowingly into a sort of cyborg.

As the ruler of Jamatai, queen Himika, reawakens from her slumber in the underground, it is revealed that the bell is also key to the reconquest of the Earth surface. Her henchmen kill Prof. Shiba in vain pursue of the artifact, barely leaving the scientist time to upload his thought on a supercomputer at a specially built defense base. Anticipating the hidden menace, Professor Shiba has also prepared a giant fighting robot, Steel Jeeg, composed of interchangeable magnetic limbs and for which Hiroshi Shiba can become head and conscience. His mission is to defend modern Japan from the invaders, who also dispose of similar giant monsters (haniwa) and an army of minions. In such battles, Jeeg is also aided by a robot horse known as Panzeroid, and a fighting jet capable of shooting replacement components and specialized weapons for his body. The series follows such war, Hiroshi's character development and the underground civilization's efforts to raise again to power and internal civil war, after the first battles are lost.

Concept[edit]

Steel Jeeg is formed by combining the parts released by the Big Shooter jet, piloted by Prof. Shiba's lovely assistant, Miwa Uzuki. Hiroshi Shiba becomes the head of Steel Jeeg by bumping his fists together.

Staff[edit]

Series director: Masayuki Akechi

Episode Directors: Kazuya Miyazaki, Masamune Ochiai, Masayuki Akechi, Yoshikata Nitta, Yugo Serikawa

Writers: Hiroyasu Yamaura, Keisuke Fujikawa, Toyohiro Ando

Music: Michiaki Watanabe

Original creator: Go Nagai, Tatsuya Yasuda

Character Design: Kazuo Nakamura

Theme music[edit]

Opening theme: "Song of Kotetsu Jeeg" (鋼鉄ジーグのうた Kotetsu Jīgu no Uta?), by Ichirou Mizuki with Columbia Yurikago-kai and Koorogi '73

Ending theme: "Theme of Hiroshi" (ひろしのテーマ Hiroshi no Tēma?), by Ichirou Mizuki with Koorogi '73

Video games[edit]

Jeeg makes an appearance in 2nd Super Robot Wars Alpha and Super Robot Wars Alpha 3 for the PlayStation 2, and in Super Robot Wars K and Super Robot Wars L for the Nintendo DS

Merchandise[edit]

Takara made Jeeg and Panzeroid toys as part of their Magnemo line, making use of a system of magnetic sockets and steel ball joints for unprecedented articulation and interchangeability.

In the United States, the Jeeg and Panzeroid toys were remolded in different colors and new heads were sculpted for Mego's Micronauts "Magno" figures; Baron Karza and Force Commander.

In Italy, the toy company Gig Co, who had the European rights to the Micronauts at the time, made three more figures using the Jeeg toy as a basis; King Atlas, Green Baron, and Emperor. These toys (with the exception of Emperor, who was released in very limited numbers by a company called Lion Rock Toys) were never released in America because Mego went bankrupt before the toys could be unveiled to the US market, while Gig kept the Micronauts license going for a few years afterward in Europe.

Internationalization[edit]

The Steel Jeeg anime was broadcast in a number of European countries, where it was quite successful, especially in Italy, where it still has a huge fanbase.

In the 80s the series was shown in Latin America, where it was part of a giant robot show fashioned in the style of Force Five, called "El Festival de los Robots" which translates to "Festival of Robots". Steel Jeeg was called "El Vengador" (The Avenger) along with four other anime shows including Gaiking, Starzinger and Magne Robo Gakeen. The names were translated in Spanish to "El Gladiador", "El Galáctico", and "Supermagnetrón" respectively. Only 25 episodes of the original 46 were dubbed in Spanish and aired. This version of the series never reached their conclusion. The Spanish theme song of "El Vengador" (Steel Jeeg) was composed and sung by Chilean singer Memo Aguirre (Capitán Memo). In 2008 the Chilean company SeriesTV edit a set of 24 DVD with Festival de los Robots episodes. This set includes 24 episodes of "El Vengador" with the original Spanish dubbing.

Like many popular 70s super robot shows, Steel Jeeg has never been released in the US.

Sequel[edit]

On April 5, 2007 at 11:30 p.m. JST a sequel of Steel Jeeg called Koutetsushin Jeeg began airing on the satellite network WOWOW.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Anime!Anime! Staff (2007). "鋼鉄ジーグ 30年ぶりに復活!4月からWOWOWで(1/26)". Anime!Anime!. Retrieved January 26, 2007. 

External links[edit]