Before he became a defense lawyer
, Birdman was the headliner of Birdman and the Galaxy Trio
, part of Hanna-Barbera
's brief Super Hero
cycle in the mid-1960s.
Birdman is a Winged Humanoid
that can fly, shoot solar rays from his fists and project "solar shields" to defend himself against attacks. He was recruited by a top-secret government agency, Inter-Nation Security. Together with his eagle companion, Avenger, They Fight Crime
wherever he is sent by his superior, Falcon-7. Birdman had one weakness: He gradually lost his strength if he is away from direct sunlight for an extended period. The villains often exploited this by capturing Birdman and keeping him in a poorly lighted room
The Galaxy Trio, stars of the backup segment, consisted of Vapor Man, who could turn his body into any kind of gas; Meteor Man, who could enlarge his fists or any other part of his body, and Gravity Girl, who could make people and objects seem lighter or heavier. Together, They Fight Crime
and patrol space in their cruiser Condor One maintaining order working for his superior, the Chief of the Galactic Patrol law enforcement agency.
Tropes in Birdman and the Galaxy Trio:
- Air-Vent Passageway: Episode "The Quake Threat". When Birdman is trapped in an Elaborate Underground Base, Avenger the eagle breaks in to save him through an air vent.
- Alternate Company Equivalent: Birdman, to DC Comics' Hawkman.
- Amplified Animal Aptitude: Avenger was pretty smart for an eagle. He also wore a collar with a communicator in it.
- Artistic License - Military: In several The Galaxy Trio episodes members of the title group and radio officers at Intergalactic Headquarters use "Over and out" to end communications.
- Aside Comment
- "The Quake Threat". After Birdman destroys several of Dr. Kiroff's robots:
Dr. Kiroff: He's destroyed my metal men [turns to face the camera] but there's more than one way to catch a bird!
- "The Brian Thief". When Doctor Shado sees Birdman approaching his laboratory:
Doctor Shado: It's Birdman, all right. He's finally arrived. [Turns and looks at the audience]] At long last!
- "Meets Reducto". The title villain does this after completing his Reduction Machine Shrink Ray device.
Reducto: With this Reduction Machine I will soon have this country, [turns to look at the camera] perhaps the entire world at my mercy!
- Attack Reflector: Birdman episode "Vulturo, Prince of Darkness". The title villain develops a energy shield that can reflect Birdman's solar energy beam attacks back at him.
- Awesome Backpack: Birdman episode "Meets Reducto". The title villain's Shrink Ray device is a pistol connected to a backpack that holds the Reduction Device's electronic components.
- Deflector Shields: The Galaxy Trio's starship Condor One has "defense shields" that can be raised to stop incoming attacks.
- Distress Call: The Galaxy Trio episode "TITAN, the Titanium Man". The Galaxy Trio receives a distress signal from Titanorous, the metal planet. It turns out to be a Fake Distress Call sent by the title villain to lure them into a trap so he can dispose of them.
- Egyptian Mythology: Birdman received his powers from the Egyptian Sun God, Ra (thus the bird and sun motifs).
- Elaborate Underground Base: In a series full of Supervillain Lairs to begin with, in the Birdman episode ("Number One") that brought them into the open and really defined them as a threat, F.E.A.R. turned out to have one of these. One also appeared in the episode "The Quake Threat" (belonging to Dr. Kiroff).
- Escape Pod: The Galaxy Trio episode "Galaxy Trio and the Sleeping Planet". At the end of the episode the space pirate Krag escapes his ship in a smaller ship.
- Evil Counterpart: Vulturo, to Birdman.
- Expo Label: Birdman episode "The Constrictor". In the title villain's submarine is an escape hatch which is helpfully labeled "Escape Hatch" to let the audience know what it is.
- Eye Patch Of Power: Falcon-7 wore one.
- Gravity Master: Gravity Girl.
- Harmless Freezing: In the Birdman episodes "Versus Cumulus, the Storm King", "Versus Dr. Freezoids", "Train Trek", "The Empress of Evil" and "Skon of Space".
- Human Aliens: Most of the races in Galaxy Trio.
- Jet Pack: Birdman episode "The Purple Moss". At the end the villains escape their ship by donning jet packs and flying away. Unfortunately they're too high in the atmosphere and end up going into orbit around the Earth.
- Kid Sidekick: Birdboy.
- Knockout Gas: The Galaxy Trio episode "The Duplitrons". Meteor Man is taken out twice by sleep gas: once while he's flying in a rocket pod, the second time after he wakes up in the Duplitrons' base.
- Light 'em Up: Most of Birdman's powers were, unintuitively, light-based (see Egyptian Mythology for the reason). He also did have bird-like wings and Super Strength, though.
- The Power of the Sun: The source of Birdman's powers.
- Put Their Heads Together: The Galaxy Trio episode "Versus the Moltens of Meteorus". While Meteor Man is fighting the Moltens he picks up two of them and slams their heads together, knocking them out.
- Red Right Hand: Every villian shows a physical defect or tip-off to their monstrous nature except Hannibal the Hunter. Medusa was also a beautiful woman, but had green skin.
- Royals Who Actually Do Something: Gravity Girl is the princess of her home planet, but chooses to explore the galaxy as a superhero and leave the ruling to the rest of her family.
- The prince of the Maja Raja saves the day when he gives Birdman a diamond from his turban that he says came from the sun god, Ra.
- Say My Name: BIRRRRRD-MAN!
- Self-Destruct Mechanism: In the Birdman episodes "Versus Dr. Freezoids", "Number One", "The Deadly Duplicator", "Avenger for Ransom" and "Serpents of the Deep".
- Semantic Super Power: Vapor Man can do pretty much anything by making a gas, like freeze vapor, acid vapor, etc.
- Shrink Ray: The villains in the Birdman episodes "The Ant Ape" and "Meets Reducto" each have one of these.
- Size Shifter: Meteor Man.
- Something Person: Birdman, Vapor Man and Gravity Girl. Subverted with Meteor Man, whose powers had nothing to do with meteors.
- Standard Powerup Pose: The title character adopts this pose when he recharges his solar energy by bathing in sunlight.
- Submarine Pirates: Episode "Serpents of the Deep". Dr. Shark operates from a submarine that has a weapon that can cut through objects. He uses it to steal a bathyscape so he can mine gold from the ocean floor.
- Super Hero Origin:
- Birdman received his powers from an Egyptian god.
- Both Vapor Man and Gravity Girl have powers that are common for their species.
- Super Smoke: Vapor Man.
- Weaksauce Weakness: Birdman losing power from lack of sunlight. Makes you wonder why his enemies didn't act at night more often