Golden Bat is Japan's first Super Hero
, debuting in 1930, as part of a popular traveling Kamishibai
("Paper Theater") show. Since then, he has had Anime
series, a Manga
adaptation, and a few live-action films, including one starring Sonny Chiba
Golden Bat was the first illustrated superhero, and the first superhero with all the ingredients of the modern superhero archetype: Stock Superpowers
such as Super Strength
and Super Speed
, The Cape
, X-Ray Vision
, Bat Signal
, etc. He predates, and was a precursor to, the American comic-book pulp superheroes, eight years before Superman
, nine years before Batman
, and eleven years before Captain America
. While his name resembles Batman, Golden Bat has much more in common with Superman (though he looks more like Spawn
, or Captain America's nemesis Red Skull
While he was in many ways a precursor to both Superman and Batman, it is unknown whether he had any influence on their creation. However, due to his popularity in Japan, Golden Bat was essentially the Trope Maker
for Japanese superheroes. His legacy can be seen in the superheroes who have permeated Japanese media since then, including other early 1930's Kamishibai superheroes like Prince of Gamma
, the Sentai
superheroes of Tokusatsu
films and shows, Manga
superheroes ranging from Astro Boy
to Magical Girls
like Sailor Moon
, and even Super Robots
(he fought a gigantic mech
- Anime - Golden Bat, along with other Kamishibai paper theater shows at the time, is a precursor to anime. Golden Bat eventually got his own anime series in 1966.
- Atlantis - An ancient civilization where Ogon Bat originates from.
- Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever - He fights a humongous Super Robot.
- Arch-Nemesis - Dr. Erich Nazō
- Badass Cape - He was one of the first caped superheroes, and certainly the first with superpowers. Golden Bat had various uses for his cape. For example, he could make gusts of winds with his cape and could also use it to disguise himself.
- Bat Signal - Years before Batman, Golden Bat was using a similar cunning technique, using his costume and his reputation to scare the villains he fights. First a gold bat would appear, followed be a haunting laughter and the appearance of Ogon Bat`s ghostly golden skull. He was also feared because, unlike most heroes that would follow him (and some before), he didn't care if the villains died or not, so a meeting with the bat would most definitely end in death.
- Blow You Away - He could make gusts of winds with his cape.
- Color Character - Ōgon basically means gold, which is what we call him in English
- Earthquake Machine - He can use his staff to generate small earthquakes.
- Evil Counterpart - Black Bat.
- Face of a Thug - He looks like a freakin' skeleton (he looks a bit like Spawn, or Captain America's nemesis Red Skull).
- Flight - Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it Superman? No, it's Golden Bat!
- Humongous Mecha - He fights a gigantic Super Robot.
- Immortality - Being an ancient Atlantean who has been around for thousands of years, he is obviously immortal.
- Magic - Due to his magical nature, Golden Bat was the most powerful super hero of the 1930's to 1940's. Some of Golden Bat's magical powers include shooting powerful bolts of energy, as well as other abilities mentioned on this page.
- Magi Tech - The source of Ogun's power and how he survived until the modern day (resting in a Sarcophagus).
- Manga - Golden Bat, along with other Kamishibai paper theater shows at the time, is a precursor to modern manga. Golden Bat eventually got his own manga series.
- Nigh-Invulnerability - He has a degree of invulnerability, being able to withstand bullets and lasers with ease.
- Shock and Awe - Ogun's staff can produce lightning
- Sentai - Golden Bat is a precursor to the Super Sentai genre of Japanese superheroes.
- Stock Superpowers - Super Strength, Super Speed, and other abilities, including Magical powers. Due to his magical nature, Golden Bat was the most powerful super hero of the 1930's to 1940's, more so than Golden Age Superman.
- Super Hero - One of the first, and perhaps the first modern non-Western example (not including superhuman mythological heroes). In fact, he predates almost all of the Western examples, with only a few such as Zorro (who lacked superpowers) coming before.
- Super Hero Origin - He is an Immortal from ancient Atlantis, and is awoken from his slumber thousands of years later, in the 20th century.
- Super Reflexes - Golden Bat dodges bullets... even though he doesn't actually need to, since his body can withstand bullets anyway.
- Super Robot - He fights a gigantic mech.
- Super Speed - He moved faster than a speeding bullet, eight years before Superman.
- Super Strength - He was the first caped superhero with super strength. He defeats a gigantic mecha robot by grabbing it by his finger, spinning it around, and flinging it.
- Super Toughness - He has a degree of invulnerability, being able to withstand bullets and lasers with ease. He could also easily breath underwater.
- Telepathy - He has a psychic link with the girl who resurrected him.
- The Cape - He was possibly the first caped superhero, depending on whether or not one considers the earlier caped crusader Zorro a superhero (Zorro lacked superpowers).
- X-Ray Vision - He has X-ray vision.