So I’ve decided to do a mini-series of posts this month about Japanese takes on familiar non-Japanese characters. I’ll start with what’s probably the one I have the most to say about: Spider-Man.
Basically, what happened was that there was a deal between Marvel and Toei that let each use the other’s characters in any way they wanted. Neither company actually did as much with this as you’d think; Marvel used two Toei anime robots (Combattler V and Danguard Ace) in their Shogun Warriors comic, Toei made an animated movie based on The Tomb of Dracula (one of Marvel’s horror comics), and then there was this tokusatsu version of Spider-Man, and one other thing.
They definitely went for the “in any way they wanted” part; this Spider-Man is a different character with a different origin involving aliens, who only wears the same costume and has similar powers. (And first idea they had would have been even more different; Spider-Man was almost the sidekick of a time-traveling Yamato Takeru!)
Continue reading Kakero! Spider-Man
Last year I did a list of unusual transformations that are still among my most popular posts, so here’s an addition to it.
Oh, and here is a more complete article about the McDonalds Changeables, which I included on the previous list but had difficulty finding much about.
#5 – Mirage
One of the original Transformers. I mentioned him as a side note in the previous list, but didn’t think race cars should take more than one spot on the list. But after completing the list I was made aware of something I hadn’t known.
Formula 1 cars cannot drive on normal roads. I don’t mean they just aren’t street legal; they literally can’t drive on any road that has a “crown”, or on any surface that isn’t completely flat.
(Mirage does manage to drive on regular roads in the cartoon despite the fact that the real vehicle he looks like can’t, but this could only be accomplished by some kind of inaccuracy, and is only one of several factors that make him by far the most conspicuous of the original Autobots.)
Continue reading 5 More Impractical Robot Transformations
Comic books obviously provide an easy example of large shared universes; I don’t even need to explain how clearly established it is that Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, Captain America, Iron Man, the X-Men, and many others exist in the same universe. But let’s see what else Marvel’s characters have interacted with, besides each other, still without crossing universes.
The main Marvel universe contains quite a few characters that Marvel doesn’t have the rights to anymore, though I’m not familiar enough with Marvel’s Godzilla or Conan comics to say whether this counts as a ”probably one way canon” situation or as Marvel just having their own versions of those characters. There’s also Rom the Space Knight (where the comic is the only reason anyone cares about the character) and Shogun Warriors (where Marvels’s version of the robots should be considered unrelated lookalikes to their anime counterparts).
Then there was Archie Meets the Punisher.