Cult Cartoon Essentials

Cult Cartoon Essentials: The Mysterious Cities of Gold

It is the 16th century. From all over Europe, great ships sail west to conquer the New World, the Americas. The men, eager to seek their fortune, to find new adventures in new lands. They long to cross uncharted seas and discover unknown countries, to find secret gold on a mountain trail high in the Andes. They dream of following the path of the setting sun that leads to El Dorado and the Mysterious Cities of Gold.

The Mysterious Cities of Gold was a French-Japanese animated series co-produced by DIC Entertainment and Studio Pierrot. The series premiered on 29 June 1982 and ran weekly for 39 episodes. Set in 1532, the series follows the adventures of a young Spanish boy named Esteban who joins a voyage to the New World in search of the lost Cities of Gold and his father.

Along with Esteban are Mendoza, a navigator, and his associates Sancho and Pedro, in their search for one of The Seven Cities of Gold in the New World, hoping to find his father. They are joined on their quest by Zia, an Incan girl (who was kidnapped by Gomez, Gaspar, Perez and Mendoza), and Tao, the last descendant of the sunken empire of Mu (Hiva in the English dub).

The series is a mix of ancient South American history, archaeology, and science fiction. The travellers encounter the Maya, Inca, and Olmecs during their journey. They discover many lost technological wonders of the Mu Empire, including a solar powered ship (the Solaris) and The Golden Condor, a huge solar-powered ornithopter (mechanical bird), capable of traveling considerable distances under the sun’s power alone. They are constantly pursued by antagonists Gomez and Gaspar, who are also in search of the Cities of Gold…

 

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