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Supaida-Man - Kakutoki Sekai Ichidai Kai

Spider-Man - The Greatest Martial Arts Tournament in the World / episode 39

Japan 1978
produced by
Toru Hirayama, Susumu Yoshikawa for Toei
directed by Koichi Takemoto
starring Shinji Toudou, Mitsuo Ando, Izumi Oyama, Rika Miura, Yukie Kagawa
written by Shozo Uehara, based on the Marvel Comics-character Spider-Man created by Stan Lee (writer), Steve Ditko (artist)

TV-series
Spider-Man, Japanese Spider-Man

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Detective Tachibana, a police investigator who dresses like Clint Eastwood from the Dollar-movies and always carries a guitar around - and who previously was in the episode No Tomorrow for the Detective and Son - wants to free his colleague Shimamoto from the clutches of the Iron Cross Army ... and Spicer-Man (Shinji Todou) just cannot allow that since Tachibana has a son who has already lost his mother, and while Spidey has a fondness for orphans, he's totally unfond of kids becoming orphans. So he knocks Tachibana out and goes into the devil's lair in his place - to find out Shimamoto is mind-controlled by the Army and it was all a trap set up by the Iron Cross Army in the first place - who soon enough make Spidey the guest of honour of a martial arts tournament, in which he gets beaten up mercilessly by two brutes ... before Tachibana shows up to save Spider-Man, and Spidey calls his giant robot for assistance - not a moment too late, because one of the fighters has just grown to giant size (for no particular reason). Of course it all ends happily.

 

It's interesting that despite the whole episode being about a martial arts tournament, there's very little actual fighting going on in this episode, also compared to earlier episodes. Apart from that though, this story might not be exceptional but is pretty ok since the character of Tachibana brings a bit of colour to the proceedings and the costumes of the martial artists were at least hilarious.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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