Battle Fever J was the third Super Sentai show, lasting from 1979 to 1980. Following up on the success of their tokusatsu adaptation of Spider-Man (which most of the early Sentai crew worked on after the end of J.A.K.Q. Dengekitai), Battle Fever J was originally intended to be a localization of the Marvel Comics superhero Captain America, which would have starred a Japanese counterpart named "Captain Japan". However, this idea was revised after Toei decided to resurrect the Sentai series (without Shotaro Ishinomori's involvement) following a two-year hiatus by adding a giant robot to the formula, putting the "Super" in Super Sentai (in fact Himitsu Sentai Goranger and JAKQ were not part of the Super Sentai franchise until years later).When the evil secret society of Egos arrives on Japan to take over the country, General Tetsuzan Kurama of the Defense Department gathers five young agents to form Team Battle Fever. Each agent has received specialized training from different organizations around the world and have developed their own fighting styles based on international dance moves.
Team Battle Fever is composed of:
Masao Den / Battle Japan: The Leader; wields a spear. Wears red and white, the colors of the Japanese flag.
Kyōsuke Shida / Battle France: The Lancer, a beautician and womanizer, not as much dedicated to his duty as Masao. A fencer and the new second-in-command after Kensaku's death. Wears dark blue and white (light blue in early episodes).
Color-Coded for Your Convenience: Although the members of the team are named after different countries, Battle Fever is notable for having the first black ranger (Battle Kenya*
although, he was originally classified as a green ranger, partly to avoid racist accusations and partly because black was considered a villainous color at the time and Kenya's suit had a prominent green stripe, as well as a green letter "K" on his belt buckle and the handle of the Battle Fever Robo's Denkōken.
), as well as the only official orange ranger (Battle Cossack). Interestingly, the Battle France suit was originally a sky blue outfit with a dark blue stripe matching the colors of his helmet (particularly noticeable when the team wear the suits for the first time, seen here◊), but the colors faded away as the series went on and it became pure white with a blue stripe instead (the same colors which would be used in the Kaizoku Sentai Gokaiger version of the suit).
Cool Airship: The Battle Shark, which stores the Battle Fever Robo and all of its weapons. From this point on, all the Sentai airships were mainly mecha carriers (not counting mecha components), until the last 80s series completely eliminated the tradition.
Cool Bike: The Three Machines, also known as the Fever Machines, a set of three motorcycles for Cossack, Kenya and France.
Cool Car: The Battle Fever Car driven by Japan and America. Unlike other Sentai cars, this one is just an inconspicuous green Mazda RX-7 with a supercharged jet engine.
Eye Catch: The eyecatch before the break features a still image of the Battle Fever team, while the eyecatch after the break features the Battle Fever Robo, after it is introduced.
Transformation Trinket: Subverted. While they don't physically transform, the suits are stored inside each member's "Battleceiver", a wrist-worm transceiver. This is clearly evident when Diane gives the Miss America suit to Maria. Also, in the episode where Kensaku dies, he clearly takes off his Battleceiver before leaving the Battle Fever base for the last time.
Clothes Make the Superman: Kensaku wanted to have a day alone with someone who didn't like him being part of Team Battle Fever, so he decided to make it easier by leaving his Battlizer behind. Egos, sadly, took advantage of this and killed Kensaku.
Dance Battler: All of the Battle Fever J memebers incorporate dance moves from their home country into their fighting.
Though the "home country" part of this context doesn't seem to extend to Japan (whose kung fu moves are very much Chinese) and France (whose flamenco dance isn't as French as much as it is Spanish).
Early Installment Weirdness: Instead of the masked visors with the see-through holes used in Goranger and J.A.K.Q. or the shade-styles goggles used from Denziman and onward, the Battle Fever warriors each wore a face-like mask with two eye-shaped visors and sculpted noses and mouths meant to invoke an American superhero style (particularly Captain America). This is also why Miss America wears a wig on her helmet, something no other Sentai heroine has ever wore on her suit.
Orwellian Retcon: The original LP for the Battle Fever J soundtrack depicted Battle France wearing the light blue suit he wore in early episodes. The CD version, first printed during the 1990s, changed to the white suit he wore in later episodes.
Episodes 1–3, 5, and 7 have two versions: the original, in which Kenji Ushio plays Hedder, and the other in which he has been replaced by Masashi Ishibashi.
Unintentional Period Piece: A lot of Miss America's moves were disco based, and the title was partly a play on the popularity of the word "fever" in disco culture (Disco Fever, Boogie Fever, Saturday Night Fever.) Disco was dead not too long after.
You Look Familiar: The girl playing Yuki had previously played another role in episode 13, and the woman playing the human form of the very first monster returns in the last episode as Salome in disguise.