How I Felt Janperson Kept The Robocop Movies Spirit Better Than Jiban

I do acknowledge that Robocop came first before Jiban and Janperson, one can still think of how Robocop's spirit was kept in both shows. I'd discuss about Jiban which came in 1989 and Janperson which came in 1994.

First, let's discuss Mobile Cop Jiban.

I remembered how IBC-13 called him as the "Japanese Robocop" which it was partially right. The story of Jiban had its hero Naoto Tamura a rookie cop who got killed by the Biorons. Naoto Tamura like Alex Murphy gets revived as a cyborg by Dr. Kenzo Igarashi known as Mobile Cop Jiban. Unlike Robocop, he could actually revert back to his original identity and only a few people know the truth that he's really the cyborg hero known as Jiban.

Unlike Robocop, the sci-fi element was taken to a whole new level. Jiban only fought one organization known as the Biorons, which misused biotechnology for their selfish means. Its leader Dr. Giba was planning to take over Japan with his Bioron monsters. However there was more of a secret behind him. Jiban would dispatch of the Bioron monsters that wrecked havoc. That was pretty much a deviation from Robocop itself. Jiban is more of its own show with a bit of Robocop inspiration. I always wondered why there was someone who looked like Scorpina in that set... years later I would discover the existence of Kyoryu Sentai Zyuranger and Ami Kawaii herself.

What was fascinating to know was that Dr. Giba was actually born from a laboratory accident, shunned by humanity and now plans to make a world for mutants. What was strange or not, is that the idea was later ported into Power Rangers Time Force's rather hammy original villain Ransik. Compared to Ransik though, Dr. Giba is portrayed to be more cruel and uncaring... since Ransik does care about his daughter even if he mistreated Frax.

When I think of Jiban, yes he had some Robocop inspiration but I cannot deny that it felt more like it was a tribute to other sci-fi movies with just a bit of Robocop. After all, Robocop didn't battle monsters of the week or anything, right?

Now for Janperson...

Janperson was created in 1994, he was introduced into the scene as a Robocop-style hero shrouded in mystery. But unlike Jiban, he wasn't fighting monsters of the week - instead he was focused on defeating three major crime organizations in Japan. He was first going against the Guild where he quickly finished it but it was replaced by Neo Guild, an organization of mechanical gangsters. He would also go against the evil Tatewaki Konzern which looks like Japan's own version of Omni Consumer Products (OCP) and the Super Science Network (SSN).

The most amazing thing the staff involved with Janperson was this... they were able to get the right actor to play their own version of Clarence Boddicker. Yes, I'm talking about Shun Sugata playing as the mentally unstable Ryuzaburo Tatewaki. If you saw the first Robocop movie, you might realize that the secondary villain Boddicker was fond of sweets, trigger happy and just plain crazy. In this one, Tatewaki is pictured to be what if Boddicker was the owner and chairman of OCP instead of being an OCP-hired thug... a creative direction actually. I just thought that Sugata himself was plain awesome.

I guess Robocop 2 didn't leave their eyes either. Reiko Ayanokouji would be a more sinister version of OCP's scientist Juliette Faxx. Both are corrupt, unscrupulous but what if she headed her own organization? SSN itself plagued Tokyo with its misuse of technology to achieve its goals. Unlike Juliette who was just a subordinate, Reiko heads her own evil organization where she fires her subordinates by dropping them in trap doors or ignoring their welfare when they fail her. I thought adding another OCP like organization made the conflict more interesting. Also, SSN also had biotechnology experiments in its quest for supremacy.

The Neo Guild itself is also some kind of robotic cult of sorts. George Makebe has a god complex but he leads an organization of robots. The Neo Guild somewhat has its own misapplication of robotics against the people of Tokyo. In short, it's another OCP type organization bidding to take over Tokyo. I felt like episodes with Makebe himself were also pretty interesting with how he has godlike delusions and madness.

With these, even if midseason, Janperson eventually had another ally in Gun Gibson and Arujiko (the one that becomes the Jan Vulcan add-on), the spirit of Robocop was more intact in Janperson than Jiban when it came to how episodes were written.


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