Whatever name by which you are familiar with this property, and there have been many, (Gatchaman, Science Ninja Team Gatchaman, G-Force, Battle of the Planets, G-Force: Guardians of Space, Eagle Riders) the awesomeness still stands. So my nerdgasm was quite explosive when I found out that a live-action movie had been made and was to be released (sadly only in Japan) in August.
For those not in the know, Gatchaman is a Japanese cartoon about 5 teenage “science ninjas” from the International Science Organization as they do battle against would-be-world conquering organization known as Galactor and their sexually ambiguous leader Bergu Kattse (Zoltar in the US version).
The heroes all dressed in avian inspired costumes, flew around in a supersonic plane called the Phoenix that could turn to flame like its mythical namesake and did crazy acrobatic karate moves to beat their enemies. It was an all around cool ass show that I loved as a kid when the US adaptation was broadcast. Get to know the characters of GATCHAMAN:
Ken (The Eagle)
Team leader.Ken was orphaned as a kid and raised by the head of the ISO, Dr. Kozaburo Nambu. As leader he was given the designation of Gatchaman.
Jo (The Condor)
Second-in-command to Ken. Jo, full name George Asakura, is a race car driver by trade and like Ken was also raised by Dr. Nambu after his parents were killed by Galactor. Has a contentious relationship with Ken.
Jun (The Swan)
Another orphan though raised in an orphanage instead of by the ISO. Jun is an expert motocyclist and is in a bit of a triangle with Ken and Jo.
Jinpei (The Swallow)
The youngest member of the team and also an orphan. Grew up in the same orphanage as Jun and the two of them have a sibling relationship.
Ryu (The Owl)
The son of a fisherman and a burly, strong fighter. Ryu is the pilot of The Phoenix and best friends with Jinpei.
Dr. Kōzaburō Nambu (Head of ISO)
The man in charge of the ISO, brilliant scientist, surrogate father to Ken and Jo, and owner of quite the snazzy pornstache.
Berg Kattse (The Bad Guy)
Basically a hermaphrodite who can split his/her time between which gender he/she will be. He/She was quite the mindfuck to an impressionable little kid in the 70s.
Sosai X (The Bigger Bad Guy)
The head muckety muck of Galactor and the Palpatine to Berg Kattse’s Vader, Sosai X alternated between wanting to destroy and conquer the Earth.
And here is the teaser trailer and a promo image from the upcoming film plus a synopsis of the movie:
The five serve as agents of the International Science Organization in Tokyo in the near future. Galactor, a mysterious group whose technology far surpasses that of humans, has declared war on the entire world and has already subjugated half of it. A mysterious crystal-like object called a “stone,” is humanity’s only hope. Those who are able to draw out the power of the “stones” are forced to train to become special agents in a five-person team called “Gatchaman.”