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The scene is Steam City, a London-ish city which represents an entire civilization run by coal and steam power. Because of steam, the city is sometimes covered in a mist. Villains take advantage of the steamy mist to hide and execute their evil plans. Only a few dare venture into what's beyond the steamy mist. They are known as the Steam Detectives: Narutaki, his nurse-assistant Lingling, and his Megamaton robot Goriki.
A manga by Kia Asamiya, who created it for his son. It was later adapted into a 26-episode TV anime series produced by Xebec
This work provides examples of:
- Abnormal Ammo: Often used by Narutaki with his equally-abnormal gun.
- Accidental Hero: Narutaki foils a bank heist (unintentionally) while chasing a lost cat across town. Even the criminals remark on how pathetic they are.
- Accidental Pervert: Narutaki and Machine Baron.
- Amazing Freaking Grace: Kia Asamiya uses this in some intervals during the story, usually to great dramatic effects.
- Ascended Fangirl: Ling Ling appears in Steam King's third novel, much to her surprise.
- A Twinkle in the Sky: Machine Baron and Crimson Scorpion are common victims.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Said word for word by Ling Ling in episode 19.
- City Noir
- Classy Cat-Burglar: Crimson Scorpion
- Dagwood Sandwich: Episode 13
- Deadly Doctor: Lang Lang
- Determinator: In one scene, Narutaki is barely hanging onto the side of a bridge that was just blown up by Le Bled, who has him a cane-gunpoint. A bomb is set to explode at a nearby hospital in a matter of minutes. When taunted about how he planned to get out of his perilous situation, Narutaki simply says, "Not Give Up."
- Distressed Damsel: Ling Ling, sometimes.
- Expy: Le Bled is very reminiscent of Char, and Night Phantom looks like a villainous Batman.
- Evil Counterpart: Le Bled and Lang Lang to Narutaki and Ling Ling. Their Megamatons too, except Le Bled's can fly.
- Fighting from the Inside: Steam King
- For Science!: Where Dr. Hsu and Dr. Guilty disagreed on about using Megamaton technology.
- Grappling-Hook Pistol
- Hello, Nurse!: Ling Ling and Lang Lang
- Heroic BSOD: After failing to deliver a vaccine in time to save a sickly girl, Narutaki falls into despair.
- Hostage for MacGuffin: Of course.
- Humongous Mecha: The Megamatons are minor examples, quite often used as Robot Buddys.
- I Know You Are In There Somewhere Fight: Ling Ling to Steam King
- Incurable Cough of Death: Le Bled's reason for doing what he does; he wants to live his life to the fullest before he dies.
- Inspector Javert: Onigawara displays this trait in an episode where Goriki (and Narutaki, by extension) are framed.
- The Jeeves: Kawakubo
- Jekyll & Hyde: Steam King and King Steam/Emperor of Steam
- Kid Detective
- Laughably Evil: Machine Baron
- Limited Wardrobe: Ling Ling, who wears her nurse outfit almost nonstop. Except when going swimming or in the bathtub, of course.
- MacGuffin: Several times.
- Marilyn Maneuver: Leads to an Eureka Moment, followed by Accidental Innuendo.
- Mineral MacGuffin: A rare meteornite (from a meteorite; NOT a misspelling) which would be cleaner than coal and power Steam City for 200,000 years.
- Mundane Utility: Goriki possesses a tong attachment, used for delicately picking up pastries. When he accidentally crushes it, causing the cream to spill out, he then adopts a Pose of Supplication.
- Names to Know in Anime
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: Steam King
- Out-of-Genre Experience: After getting slapped by Ling Ling for seemingly inexplicable reasons (at least to Narutaki), Narutaki angrily hurls his cup of coffee against the wall, only for it to bounce around like a superball instead of shattering on impact. He then opens a window to let it out, only to have it circle the ENTIRE EARTH, come back, RING THE DOORBELL, and force itself down his throat, which he then coughs up. Even for a slapstick moment, this is way out of left field. Ling Ling has a similar moment with a hairbrush, which ceases its rebounding upon coming bristle-to-face with an angry Ling Ling, even ''APOLOGIZING VOCALLY'' for "causing trouble".
- Actually, scratch that. The entirety of episode 13 qualifies.
- Phantom Thief: Le Bled, anyone?
- Reasonable Authority Figure: Chief Inspector Yagami
- Recap Episode: Episode 18
- Redemption Equals Death: Steam King
- Rocket Punch: Several Megamatons, including Goriki and Shadowbolt.
- Rodents of Unusual Size: Teng Shing, a gigantic hamster.
- Samus is a Girl: "Justice" is actually Anna. Absolutely not related to that other Justice, although the trope still applies.
- Shout-Out: One of Crimson Scorpion's targets is Silent Möbius, said to be one of the world's greatest jewels.
- In episode 11, Ling-Ling re-creates the iconic flying skirt scene from The Seven Year Itch.
- In episode 19, Le Bled quotes a line from Vera Lynn's We'll Meet Again as he flees the scene.
- Scooby-Doo Hoax: Crimson Scorpion is fond of them. Narutaki ain't fooled.
- Sibling Yin-Yang: Ling Ling and Lang Lang, complete with contrasting colors.
- Split Personality: Steam King
- Steam Punk
- The Stinger: After every preview for the next episode, a still frame of a completely random scene from the episode (totally regardless of its importance in the plot) appears for a few second, with some cheesy music.
- Stock Footage: Whenever Goriki is called upon and sent through the underground pass.
- Those Two Guys: Pasta and Doria, Crimson Scorpion's henchmen (among others at least, but only these two are consistently featured). Even though they are Bad Guys, they do NOT qualify as being Those Two Bad Guys.
- Team Pet: Teng Shing for the main cast.
- This Is a Drill: Goriki's standard Finishing Move. Also used by Narutaki as one of his gun's special attachments.
- Victory Pose: All the time. In particular is when Goriki (finally) places a pastry on his tray without it getting squashed. He is then summarily charged hundreds of times for the one pastry he succeeded in getting, as well as all the failures. Cue Heroic BSOD.