Cult TV Essentials

Cult TV Essentials: Spider-Man (Toei)

Toei_Spider-Man_costumeIt was the Spider-man incarnation that for years was heard about and not believed but after the invention of the internet we were able to check such details and they turned out to be true! There was a Japanese Spider-man… and yes he did have a giant robot!

So what was it all about?

Well, Spider-Man (Toei) was a Japanese interpretation of Spider-man which ran for 41 episodes between 1978-1979 and it had a movie! On first appearance Spider-man looks just like its Marvel counterpart but the origin story is completely different.

In the Japanese version we meet young motorcycle racer Takuya Yamashiro (played by Shinji Tōdō) who witnesses a UFO falling to earth. It turns out the UFO is a space warship named the “Marveller” from the planet “Spider”.

Takuya’s father Dr. Hiroshi Yamashiro (played by Fuyuki Murakami), a space archaeologist, investigates the case, but is killed upon finding the spaceship. The incident also attracts the attention of Professor Monster (played by Mitsuo Andō) and his evil Iron Cross Army, an alien group that plans to rule the universe.

Luckily Takuya had followed his father to the Marveller and discovers Garia, the last surviving warrior of Planet Spider, a world that was destroyed by Professor Monster and the Iron Cross Army. Garia explains that he was hunting Prof. Monster but now needs someone to carry on the fight and he injects Takuya with some of his own blood. The blood of a person from Planet Spider gives Takuya spider-like powers. Garia then gives Takuya a bracelet that can activate his spider protector costume, shoot web-lines, and controls the Marveller ship (which can also transform into a giant battle robot called “Leopardon”).

Using his powers, Takuya fights Professor Monster’s army and other threats to Earth under the name Spider-Man.

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