Machine Robo, Japan’s Coolest Gobots, Comes to America

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Machine Robo was the franchise Tonka used to create Gobots, but her Revenge of Cronos anime was night and day compared to the Hanna-Barbera cartoon.

One of the most infamous cartoons of the 1980s was Hanna-Barbera. Gobots Challenge. This cartoon, which adapted Tonka’s film Gobots Toyline, was like the source plastic rival of Hasbro and Takara Transformers. Known by many as an inferior franchise, Gobots is more mocked than remembered by nostalgic fans. However, in Japan the franchise has taken on a much cooler form.

Robotic machine was the Japanese franchise that Tonka used to create Gobots, but this is the anime Revenge of Cronos was night and day compared to the Hanna-Barbera cartoon. Combining the action of space opera and mecha anime, Machine Robo: Revenge of Cronos is a metaphorical look at what Gobots the franchise could have been. Beyond generating multiple sequels and spinoffs, the original series is now being brought to the West through anime licensing company Discotek. Here’s what anime fans should know about Japan’s stance on the Transformers’ forgotten cousins.


Revenge of Cronos

The introduction of Machine Robo: Revenge of Cronos.

The original Transformers the cartoon was largely an East-West collaboration, with the Japanese exclusivity of subsequent shows making them officially anime. For the first three seasons, however, the show was simply dubbed into Japanese and brought to the Land of the Rising Sun. It was not an option for Popy / Bandai and their Robotic machine line, because they didn’t want to double the Gobots Challenge comic book because of its questionable quality. After running the transforming toy franchise for several years without a media arm, Popy finally decided to have Ashi Productions, known for working on mecha shows, create a Robotic machine lively.

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The resulting spectacle, Revenge of Cronos, remixed the little franchise story that had been introduced before, putting the show on the planet Cronos. There, Machine Robo robots lived in various tribes, with many of these machines such as protagonist Rom Stol being humanoid androids that resembled robots such as Mega Man or Astro Boy. They fought off the alien invaders known as Gyandlar, who were mostly made up of enemies that were exclusive to the toy-less show. Since virtually all of the Machine Robos were heroes, this meant that the Renegades of Gobots as Cy-Kill and Cop-Tur (known in Robotic machine simply Bike Robo and Gyro Robo) were good guys.

Initially quite episodic, the series eventually began to focus more on longer arcs, with the introduction of different tribes of heroes and villains. These included the stony transforming Rock People, known in the West as the Rock Lords. Rom Stohl would also combine with the larger robot Kenryu and take his final form of Baikanfu, making the series a true giant robot show.

Machine Robo’s legacy

Machine Robo, Japanese gobots.

The series ran for 47 episodes, although it is believed that it must have had a total of 52. This series of episodes shows that the series has been at least marginally popular, although it has never been so popular. known that Transformers. Ironically, Revenge of Cronos lasted from 1986 to 1987 – the last years of waning popularity of the original Gen 1 Transformers cartoon in the west.

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This version of the franchise would continue with two OAVs and a light novel starring Rom and his sister Leina. Reborn in another world as humans, the duo eventually meet versions of their familiar Machine Robo friends. This essentially made the series one of the earliest examples of isekai anime. Later in 1987, a new anime was produced titled Machine Robo: Fight Hackers, which told an original story with all the new characters.

years 2003 Robotic rescue machine was more kid-focused, remixing old-school Machine Robo designs for Earth-bound emergency-adventure stories. The franchise’s next and final permutation was the toy line Mugenbine, in which the Machine Robos transformed into different modes via powered transformation cubes. Although he did not receive an anime, he did receive several CGI commercial trailers.

The now retro original Revenge of Cronos anime and its fiction are what the franchise is still best known for, so it’s no mystery as to why Discotek chose to finally fully locate this entry. Scheduled for release in early 2022, Machine Robo: Revenge of Cronos will receive a Blu-ray print in the West, with each episode being English subtitled. This is the first time the entire series has been released in the West, finally giving fans a glimpse of how the Japanese handled the Gobots. Subsequent OVAs with Rom and Leina will also be included, along with a pilot animated film. While these robots are not as well known as Autobots and Decepticons, the legacy of Robotic machine proves that there is still a lot more than what we see on the robots that would become Leader-1 and Cy-Kill.

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