Jiban As The Kaijin-Slaying Robocop!


The popularity of the Robocop films ended up creating Japan's first Robocop-inspired hero in Jiban which would later be followed by the more Robocop-like series Janperson (except the hero was purely mechanical) and Signalman as a Robocop parody in Carranger. Considering that I'm not really a huge fan of Jiban compared to Janperson, it'd still be wrong not to give tribute to Jiban, the very first Robocop tribute by Toei!

Jiban's story is more typical to Tokusatsu, in short it's a hybrid of Robocop and your average Toku hero. The story is where Naoto Tamura a rookie detective gets killed in an incident with the Bioron Syndicate. Dr. Igarashi revives Naoto Tamura who was supposedly killed into the heroic Robocop-type character known as Jiban. It was because the accident in Dr. Igarashi's laboratory ended up creating Dr. Giba and the Bionoids as a result. He wanted to clean the mess he made so he created Jiban to destroy that mess.

Mobile Cop Jiban Retro Pilipinas Feature Kidou Keiji Jiban Naoto Tamura and Mayumi Igarashi IBC-13 Philippine Television Airing
Unlike Robocop who cannot revert back to his human identity, Naoto Tamura still wore his civilian identity and kept his identity of Jiban as secret. So the whole concept of a Japanese Robocop IMO wasn't all that ready or two, they just wanted to get bits and pieces of Robocop while creating their tributes. Jiban had to hide his identity from everyone else for a reason.


Dr. Giba would at first look like your typical human mad scientist but he's actually born out of a laboratory accident. He would send his Bionoid agents (mostly based on animals) disguised as humans to do his criminal activities of the week. Jiban would end up destroying the monsters of the week. He is actually a product of a laboratory disaster thus he hates all humans. Italian actor Leo Meneghetti (who was voiced by Shozo Iizuka) had actually delivered a superb performance as this freak of nature disguised as a human full of malice and hate.

Regardless, I felt like the series didn't click to me as a Robocop-inspired series as much as Janperson.

Comments

  1. The series is like Zyuranger who really focuses to a kid in every episode.

    ReplyDelete

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