The Baron Watches "The Super Robot Red Baron" (SPOILERS)

This is another tokosatsu of which I had never heard, but a collection of which I was sent, and so you all get to enjoy (?) my reactions to it.


We start with:


Episode 01:  "Conspiracy of the Robot Empire"

We meet our hero, Secret Scientific Investigation (hereafter "S.S.I") agent Ken Kurenai (in "real life", he's a car dealer) and his older brother Kenichiro, a roboticist. Their life has bene marked by tragedy - their parents and their kid brother Kenzo (Yes, Ma and Pa Kurenai named their sons "Kenichiro", "Ken" and "Kenzo".) We meet Ken's colleagues on the S.S.I. team, who are guarding an expo of all the world's giant robots.  They are:


  • Minoru Daigo, Captain of the team, and sometime owner of an auto repair factory.
  • Sakai Tetsuya, in civilian life he's a car salesman.
  • Daisku Hori, also a newspaper copyboy
  • Mari Matsubara, a news photographer, and the team's sole female.


We also meet Inspector Kumano, a bike cop who wields an unbrella gun, sort of like the Penguin used to. He appears to be the comedy relief character, of the sort so beloved by the makers of these shows and which I have always found profoundly unfunny. However, as with Maxwell Smart, bumbler though he is, he does well in a fight, which i just as well, as it at least gives some clue as to why theothers put up with him.


Anyhow, the Robot Expo is raided by the somewhat awkwardly named Invasion Robot Troy Horse (a somewhat unimpressive robot design) under the direction of Professor Deviler of the Robot Empire of the Iron Alliance. While the S.S.I. battles the Alliance's foot soliders, who seem to exist to get beat up, the heels kidnap Kenichi and steal all the robots. 


Kenichi is brought before the Professor, who implants him with a control collar, and sends him home, where he meets Ken, who singularly does not ask him what happened to him or how he escaped. Kenuchi presents Ken with the robot Red Baron, which he has been building in secret. I have to say that the Red Baron is not my favorite robot design, but it's OK.  Kenichi gives his brother the guided tour of the robot and has him touch the controls, which imprints them on  Ken, so that only he can use them. Troy Horse shows up, and Ken pilots Red Baron in battle against it.  Red Baron exhibits several attacks, such as the Elec-Trigger, a sort of energy attack, and BARON PUNCH! and BARON BARRIER!, which I foresee will furnish me with endless amusement.  Once Ken has won, the Professor reveals that he sent Troy to attack in order to put RB through its paces, then orders Kenichi to hand it over to him. Um, if he rwanted RB for himself, shouldn't he have ordered Kenichi to hand it over before the latter let Ken imprint himself on the thing? Sloppy planning there, Prof!


Thwarted, the Professor sends the robot Big Bison to stand there looking large but otherwise unthreatening, and threatens Kenichi with punishment for his disobedience.


Cliffhanger:  Kenichi's control collar is killing him!


Overall: This comes across as quite fun show, I am hopeful of getting quite a bit of entertainment out of this.

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It seems to be a common thing in  a lot of Japanese popular fiction of this type that you can't just do something, you have to announce that you're doing it. I tried doing that driving the car home last night (fortunately, I ride alone), but it gets too time-consuming:  "Activate ignition!  Engage driving gear! Depress accelerator! Avoid hitting pedestrian!" and so on.

Were you successful?

The Baron said:

 Avoid hitting pedestrian!" .

More or less.

Our routine is:

"Atomic batteries to power."

"Turbines to speed."

"Ready to move out."

"To the Jeffmobile, let's go!"

Actually I refer to my car as "Black Beauty." :)

A couple of episodes back, during a car chase, one of the characters said something which sounded very familiar. The subtitle said, “What’s happening?” I think I’ve heard that phrase, in Japanese, sung in the background of some popular song. I never did understand what they were saying. I meant to remember it phonetically, but I got caught up in the show and it slipped my mind.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

Actually I refer to my car as "Black Beauty."

My first car was a '76 Buick Skylark that had seen better days. I used to call it "Agnes the Death-Engine". Haven't really had a good nickname for any subsequent vehicles.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

Our routine is:

"Atomic batteries to power."

"Turbines to speed."

"Ready to move out."

Our??? Boose, you are mistaken.

I've tried to get you to play along.

When I was in junior high, my Dad bought a '57 Plymouth Belvedere.  Coal black, with fins.

We called it The Batmobile.

The Baron said:

Jeff of Earth-J said:

Actually I refer to my car as "Black Beauty."

My first car was a '76 Buick Skylark that had seen better days. I used to call it "Agnes the Death-Engine". Haven't really had a good nickname for any subsequent vehicles.

Before Bob posts the summary/comentary of the next episode, I wanted to poit out that the robot from Wednesday's episode looked very much lika a cross between a Cylon from the original Battlestar Galactica and Odin's Destroyer from Thor.

Episode 11: "The Beautiful Assassin"

We begin with Mari getting all dolled up (Woo-hoo!) for her birthday. A mysterious stranger has the kids give her flowers. However, the flowers are a trick - the stranger is IA agent Uncle Iron Hand and the flowers inject Mari with a control device and UIH orders Mari to kill Ken!  The SSI are fholidng a birthdayparty for Mari and are appalled when she tries to knife him. They manage to subdue her and Daigo spots UIH and sends the team in pursuit.  UIH summons Garnizon Ace and Ken summons RB. BARON OUNCH! and BARON MISSILE! are ineffective.  Daigo tells Ken that GA's weka point is its ears, but when Ken targets them, GA runs away.

The SSI cannot remove the control device, so Mari is put on leave and the Inspector is set to watch her.  However, UIH manages to sneak a time bomb to Mari and orders her to destroy RB's cockpit.  Mari resigns from the SSI. We next see her taking her leave of Ken in RB's cockpit. Didn't this set off any alarm bells in Ken's mind?  Did he not consider that maybe it wasn't a good idea to let her anywhere near RB?  Mari plants the bomb and it goes off.  UIH sends GA to finish off RB. However, RB is fine because Kenichiro installed a magic "BLOCK ALL" system that protected the cockpit.  RB moves to attack but Ken notices that GA's ears are now protected.  However, Ken notics that RB's weapons aren't working - it turns out the Kenichiro cheaped out and installed a "BLOCK SOME" instead of a "BLOCK ALL".  The SSI arrives, and UIH summons the Mecha-Robos. They fight, but UIH summons Mari, holding her hostage and forcing the SSI to disarm. However, the Inspector disarms UIH, and Daigo kills him with his own hand. Ken uses BARON FULL POWER! and GA blows up.  Mari rejoins the team and they resume her birthday party.


End Scene: The Inspector gives flowers to Mari.


Overall: An OK epsiode. I had hoped for a scene where Mari throws off the control and brains UIH herself, but oh, well.

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