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Trivia / Giant Robo

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  • All There in the Manual: For the Toku: Do you ever notice the one Big Fire/Gargoyle henchman with the goatee that appears in nearly every episode? Guidebooks for the series give him the name of "Lieutenant Piranha".
  • Creator Backlash: The series' creator, Mitsuteru Yokoyama, was incredibly dissatisfied with how the original manga turned out, due to Executive Meddling from the publishers, to the point where he actually refused the manga to be reprinted, until after his death.
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  • Development Hell: The OVA actually began work on 1990 as a straight up remake of the live action version. Due to Executive Meddling and budget crunches, it wasn't completed until 1998 and without its main plot fully realized.
  • Directed by Cast Member: In the Animaze English dub, Kevin Seymour was the ADR director as well as Issei Dojin's voice actor.
  • Dueling Dubs: Two English dubs were made for the North American release. One was produced by Animaze in California for L.A. Hero. Several years later, Media Blasters released it in 2004 with another dub recorded at New York City's NYAV Post, in addition to the Animaze-produced dub.
  • Franchise Killer: The overall failure of GR: Giant Robo not only put a halt to any future adaptations being made, it also put a stop to any new anime adaptations of Mitsuteru Yokoyama's works since. note 
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes: The English releases of the 1992 OVA had long been out of print, until it was eventually licensed by Discotek Media.
    • Johnny Sokko suffered from this fate for a long time. Orion Pictures had released 8 episodes of the show on VHS through Streamline Pictures before MGM bought the company out, thus leaving the remaining 18 episodes unavaliable. It wasn't until 2013 when Shout! Factory licensed the entire series and put it out on DVD.
  • Name's the Same: Nucleon (The English name for the toku villain Glober) shares its name with the energy source that makes Transformers stronger, faster and more alive!
    • The Gargoyle Gang (English name for the toku version of Big Fire) is also the name of a villain group in Riverdale.
  • No Export for You:
    • Unlike the 1967 live-action series and the 1992 OVA, the 2007 anime has never been released outside of Asia and Brazil.
    • Due to a nasty legal loophole, the original Japanese version of Toei's Giant Robo cannot be released in the US until MGM's legal rights to the English dub of the tokusatsu revert back to Toei.
  • Old Shame: Downplayed. While Yokoyama liked some of the elements and characters from Giant Robo, he felt that the varying art quality of the original manga and a lack of suspense in the story made it unworthy of being republished in its entirety until after he died.
  • The Other Darrin:
    • The first 12 chapters of the original manga were co-written and drawn by Submarine 707 creator Satoru Ozawa while Mitsuteru Yokoyama finished up the Akakage manga.
    • When Media Blasters acquired the rights to the OVA in 2004, they dubbed it at NYAV Post with local voice actors. For example, Daisaku Kusama, voiced in the first dub by Joshua Seth, is voiced in the second dub by Michelle Newman.
  • Schedule Slip: The OVA suffered massively from this thanks to its Troubled Production. The first episode was released in 1992 with the intent to be finished within 2 years. The seventh and final episode did not come until 1998 and that was after a 3 year gap between episodes 6 and 7.
  • Short-Lived, Big Impact: The tokusatsu only ran for one 26 episode season, but it was considered by Toei to be their first modern tokusatsu employing all the tropes they still use to this day on Super Sentai and Kamen Rider, as well as introducting Humongous Mecha heroes to the world of Toku.
  • Trope Namer: Contrary to popular belief, Mazinger Z was not the first anime and manga series to introduce the Rocket Punch, it was actually this series that first introduced a robot that can fire its arms like torpedos.
  • What Could Have Been: Lots and lots.
    • 1967 Manga
    • 1967 Toku Series
      • Originally in Episode 13 of the Toku, the villain Black Diamond/Harlequin was meant to be killed off in the shed explosion and offscreen be turned into Red Cobra/Fangar which explains how he disappears after the first dozen or so episodes with no explanation given and Red Cobra suddenly appears out of nowhere with only a throwaway line about how he came to be in the Japanese version (being a mishmash between the remains of Spider and Black Diamond).
      • The original planned ending was a much happier one, with Robo becoming an amusement park attraction for kids to play with. The head writing staff of Toei Company criticized Director Toru Hirayama for making a relatively dull ending so the now infamous Bittersweet Ending was chosen instead to make it stand out to viewers.
      • In addition the show was originally meant to be a full 52 episode run with a May 1967 release date but due to the TBS network commissioning Toei last minute to produce the Captain Ultra tokusastu, most the funds (and possibly kaiju designs) meant for Giant Robo got diverted into that production and pushed the filming of the show back by several months and would begin airing for an October release that same year along with cutting half the episode count.
    • 1992 OVA
      • Productions of the OVA started all the way back in 1986 which was originally planned to be an adaptation of the 1967 tokusatsu. Toei (in a manner eerily similar to the fate of the Dai-Mazinger OVA) forced Hikari Pro and Yasuhiro Imagawa to shut down that version, saying it infringed on their version of the characters. Ultimately Yasuhiro Imagawa decided with Hikari Pro to do a crossover story with all of Yokoyama's characters.
      • Early on, Yasuhiro Imagawa only planned on making a single 70-80 minute movie, owing to the Japanese recession of the 1990's, but Bandai Visual gave him enough money to at least get 3 to 4 episodes produced, with the possibility of more episodes should the OVA's do well financially. This lead to 7 episodes and 3 mini specials being made.
      • The Original Magical Girl, Sally the Witch, only really shows up as a cameo and plot device, falling prey to the dark gods of story compression. In the Siege of Babel arc, her, Big Fire and Daisaku would've made some sort of friendship.
      • The OVA was intended as the second-to-last chapter of a 7 part meta story, hence the deliberate cliffhanger.
      • The remaining 6 chapters have been titled, but not fully produced. These titles were: The Birth of Zangetsu the Midday, The Plan to Assassinate Daisaku - the Canary Penitentiary, The Boy of Three Days, The Greatest Battle in History - General Kanshin vs. Shokatsu Koumei, The Boy Detective, Kindaichi Shotaro; Appears!, and The Siege of Babel. Various Japanese and English publications gave basic summaries of what would've happened in these arcs.
      • Had Jason DeMarco made successful negotiations at the time, Giant Robo: The Day the Earth Stood Still would've aired on Toonami as part of Giant Robot Week.
      • In the original planning in the finale battle between The Experts and the Eye of Volger (which originally was just Globar from the toku), The Poisonous Shizuma Clouds would be absorbed and converted into cleaner energy by way of a 4th GR unit modeled after Calamity from the tokusatsu version, who would emerge from the Eye and fight GR-1 and the Experts to avoid them from releasing the toxic clouds from within it. Imagawa scrapped this idea early on, as it made little sense within the story itself, and ran the risk of dealing with Toei's lawyers again though art of GR-4 exists via the 1993 OVA manga which itself was heavily based on those early concepts.
      • This series was deliberately made with no real ending due to budgetary and licensing issues, and when the licensing fees became relatively cheaper, Hikari Pro and another studio, Soft Garage, opted for a full blown Continuity Reboot with aesthetics much closer to the first half of Neon Genesis Evangelion, rather than the fun and over-the-top style that the original OVA was known for. It doesn't look like we'll ever get answers to the potential plot threads the OVA left us, with the Yokoyama estate's less-than-generous licensing policies not helping. (The same reason why Giant Robo all but vanished from Super Robot Wars after Alpha.)
    • 2007 Anime
    • Misc.
  • Written by Cast Member: In NYAV Post's English dub of the OVA, Dan Green was one of the ADR scriptwriters as well as Genya's voice actor.