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Science Ninja Team Gatchaman

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Gatcha S-One

Science Ninja Team Gatchaman (科学忍者隊ガッチャマン Kagaku Ninjatai Gatchaman) is the original installment of the Gatchaman series that ran from 1972 through 1974 and written by Jinzo Toriumi. The popularity of the show led to the sequel series Gatchaman II.  

In 2005, the series was released on DVD in the US by ADV Films. The boxsets featured artwork by DC Comics alumni Alex Ross, who was a fan of the series.

On October 29, 2013, the series was re-released on Blu Ray by Section 23 Films/Sentai Filmworks, along with a redub of the three-episode OVA remake from 1994.


International Science Organization


Episode List

  1. Gatchaman Versus Turtle King
  2. The Monstrous Aircraft Carrier Appears
  3. The Giant Mummy that Summons Storms
  4. Revenge on the Iron Beast Mechadegon
  5. The Ghost Fleet from Hell
  6. The Great Mini Robot Operation
  7. Galactor's Giant Airshow
  8. The Secret of Crescent Coral Reef
  9. The Demon from the Moon
  10. The Big Battle of the Underground Monsters
  11. The Mysterious Red Impulse
  12. The Greedy Monster Ibukuron
  13. The Mysterious Red Sand
  14. The Terrible Icecander
  15. The Frightening Jellyfish Lens
  16. The Invincible Machine "Mekanika"
  17. The Bug Operation
  18. The Revenge Maneuver of the Whales
  19. Speedrace through Hell
  20. Science Ninja Team Emergency
  21. Who is Sosai X?
  22. Firebird Against Fire Spouting Dragon
  23. The Greatly Raging Mecha Ball
  24. The Neon Giant Laughing in the Dark
  25. The Magma Giant, Emperor of Hell
  26. God Phoenix, Be Reborn
  27. Galactor's Witch Racer
  28. The Invisible Demons
  29. The Demon Man Galack X
  30. The Guillotine Mecha Kamisoral
  31. The Plan to Kill Dr. Nambu
  32. The Great Gezora Operation (Part 1)
  33. The Great Gezora Operation (Part 2)
  34. The Diabolic Aurora Operation
  35. Burn, Desert Flame
  36. Young Rascal Gatchaman
  37. The Electronic Mecha Lenjira
  38. The Mysterious Mechanical Jungle
  39. The People Eating Flower Jigokiller (Part 1)
  40. The People Eating Flower Jigokiller (Part 2)
  41. The Murder Music
  42. The Great Escape Trick Operation
  43. The Romance Extinguished by Evil
  44. Galactor's Written Challenge
  45. The Seal Science Ninja Team in the Night Fog
  46. Gatchaman in the Valley of Death
  47. The Devilish Airline
  48. The Camera Mecha Shutterkiller
  49. The Terrible Mechadokuga
  50. The Dinosaur Skeleton Torakodon
  51. The Rotation Mecha Kataroller
  52. The Secret of Red Impulse
  53. Farewell, Red Impulse
  54. Gatchaman Burning with Rage
  55. The Death Defying Mini Submarine
  56. The Embittered Bird Missile
  57. The Evil White Sea
  58. Mekabutta from Hell
  59. The Secret of the Mecha Factory
  60. Science Ninja Team G-6
  61. The Imaginary Red Impulse
  62. The Snow Devil Blizzarder
  63. The Devilish Mecha Ball Which Kills Everything
  64. The Deadly Christmas Present
  65. The Synthetic Mecha Superbem
  66. The Devilish Fasion Show
  67. Gatchaman Fire, Kill for Sure!
  68. The Particle Mecha Micro Satan
  69. The Cemetery in the Moonlight
  70. Unite Girls of the Death Goddess!
  71. Invulnerable Sosai X
  72. Swarm! The Storm of the Mini Mechas
  73. Pursue Katse!
  74. The Secret of the Birdstyle
  75. The Sea Devil Jumboshakoku
  76. The Bracelet Revealed
  77. Katse Has Succeeded
  78. Death Defying Battle 10'000 Meters Below the Sea!
  79. The Stolen Gatchaman Information
  80. Return to Life, Boomerang!
  81. Duel on Galactor Island
  82. Aim at Crescent Coral!
  83. A Death Defying Ring of Fire
  84. The Spider Net Mecha Smokefiber
  85. He's G-4!
  86. Galactor's Buying up Operation
  87. The Triple Joint Mecha Patogila
  88. The Iron Beast Snake 828
  89. Setting a Trap at Crescent Coral
  90. Armoured Mecha Matanga
  91. The Plan to Blow up Crescent Coral is Completed
  92. The End of Crescent Coral
  93. Counterattack! The Subterranean Torpedo Plan
  94. The Electrical Demon Biest Angler
  95. United Ninjas, Giant Devil Man
  96. Charge into the Galactor Headquarter
  97. The Spaceship Leona 3, Gone Tomorrow
  98. The Spherical Mecha Grapebomber
  99. G-2 Covered with Wounds
  100. Gatchaman 20 Years Later
  101. The Sniper Group Hebi-Cobra
  102. Reverse! Checkmate X
  103. The Death Wager of G-2
  104. The Evil Black Hole Operation
  105. Earth Extinction 0002


The original series is also known, somewhat infamously, for its multiple English dubs (including the aforementioned release by ADV). It first had a US release in 1978 by Sandy Frank Entertainment, under the title Battle of the Planets. This version was heavily altered to adhere to the 1970s' standards of childrens' animation, as well as employ a "space" theme to tie into the popularity of the recently-released Star Wars. Sandy Frank utilized 85 episodes of the series for this adaptation, as that was the standard amount needed for syndication in that era. A new character, 7-Zark-7, was used as a way to fill in the gaps left behind by cutting scenes, as well as to explain to viewers that there were no deaths involved in the plot. As Tatsunoko Productions wound up sending the production team the film reels for episodes out of order, this adaptation is also known for having a much different viewing order.

In 1985, after "Battle of the Planets" had aired in reruns on TBS, Sandy Frank sought a new way to market the Gatchaman license. Turner Program Services sub-licensed the series for a new English adaptation, titled G-Force: Guardians of Space. After the initial test dub by Media 360 Group (an Atlanta, Georgia-based studio) was rejected due to concerns of cost, Turner contacted Fred Ladd and his "Sparklin' Entertainment" studio for a new pitch. Episodes 18 and 87 of Gatchaman were dubbed as pilots, and further episodes followed suit. However, as Turner only bought 85 episodes for syndication, only episodes 1-87 were utilized for this version, with episodes 81 and 86 skipped. 81 was skipped due to Tatsunoko being unable to find the simple English script for the producers, and 86 was skipped as the dub had already reached 85 episodes. This version stuck closer to the original Gatchaman with less censorship, although death was still toned down in some cases and the dub was criticized for its name changes, as well as a backbeat that was used to fill all silent moments. "G-Force" aired on TBS for a week in July 1987, to clear a contractual agreement so it could also be aired overseas. The entirety of the series would later be broadcast on the Cartoon Network from 1995 to 1997, returning briefly on Toonami's Midnight Run in 2000.

ADV Films' 2005 dub of the series came about as a result of sub-licensing the series from Sandy Frank (as SFE still held the master license to Gatchaman), and is uncensored, as well as keeping the character names and terminology. However, this version has also been criticized by long-time fans for some mistranslations in the dub track, such as changing "Utoland" (the city that the team lives in) to "Jutland", as well as some slang used by the characters.

ADV's release went out of print in 2007, after Sandy Frank's license to the series expired, but was re-released by Sentai Filmworks after they became the new licensor of the series in 2013.


  • Gatchaman had its earliest roots in Tatsuo Yoshida's 1963 comic "Boy Ninja Squad Moonlight" (Shonen Ninja Butai Gekko), and its live-action TV adaptation "Ninja Squad Moonlight", which ran from 1964-1966. An English dub of the series aired in Australia in 1966, under the title "Phantom Agents".
  • During the pre-production planning stages, which came as early as mid-1969, the series went through several name changes. Jinzo Toriumi's 1969 draft for the series called it "Science Ninja Squad 5" (Kagaku Ninja Butai Faibu). Later names considered through production included "Secret Seven" and "Shadow", and finally "Birdman" (Not to be confused with the Hanna Barbera superhero of the same name). "Birdman" was close to being the series' actual name when it was ready to go into production, until a meeting occurred between Tatsunoko Productions and Yomiuri Telecasting. A Yomiuri producer (Tsurayuki Matsuyama) suggested "Gatchaman". This name is a play-on-words of the Japanese onomatopoeia "Gaccha!", which is the sound of two mechas clashing and man, which is a common western format for superhero names. (Ex. Superman, Spider-Man etc.).
  • This series influenced the Super Sentai Series, Choujin Sentai Jetman.

External Links


Gatchaman media
TV animation Science Ninja Team Gatchaman · Gatchaman II · Gatchaman Fighter · New Gatchaman (unproduced)· Good Morning Ninja Team Gatchaman · Gatchaman Crowds · Gatchaman Crowds insight · Battle of the Planets: Phoenix Ninjas
Movies Science Ninja Team Gatchaman: The Movie · Gatchaman (2011 - unproduced) · Gatchaman (2013)
Adaptations Battle of the Planets (movie) · Eagle 5 Brothers · G-Force: Guardians of Space · Eagle Riders· Battle of the Planets: The New Exploits of G-Force (unproduced)
Other Gatchaman (OVA) · NTT Gatchaman · Tachimals Theater · Infini-T Force · Time Bokan: Royal Revival

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