Matchless Raijin-Oh

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Matchless Raijin-Oh
Zettai Muteki Raijin-oh.jpg
絶対無敵ライジンオー
(Zettai Muteki Raijin-Oh)
Genre Adventure, Mecha
Anime television series
Directed byToshifumi Kawase
Written byHideki Sonoda
Music by Kohei Tanaka
Studio Sunrise
Licensed by
Original network TV Tokyo, Kids Station
Original run April 3, 1991 March 25, 1992
Episodes51
Original video animation
Raijin-Oh Final
Directed byToshifumi Kawase
Written byHideki Sonoda
Music by Kohei Tanaka
Studio Sunrise
Released August 5, 1992 February 24, 1993
Runtime30 minutes
Episodes4
Wikipe-tan face.svg   Anime and mangaportal

Matchless Raijin-Oh (絶対無敵ライジンオー, Zettai Muteki Raijin-Oh, lit. Absolutely Invincible Raijin-Oh) is a 51 episode Japanese anime television series, and the first series produced for the Eldran franchise funded by Tomy and produced by Sunrise. It aired in Japan from April 3, 1991 to March 25, 1992. The story revolves around a group of elementary school children who are given command of a mecha named Raijin-Oh and their efforts to defend the Earth from the evil Jaaku (evil) Empire.

Contents

There is also a four-episode OVA sequel.

Anime Midstream , Inc. announced in December, 2008, that it acquired the license for and planned to release the anime series Matchless Raijin-Oh in the U.S. sometime in 2009 as their first anime release. The company began selling the first volume of the series direct from their website, as well as several other online retailers as of late December 2009. The first volume contained episodes 1–5. The second volume, containing episodes 6–10, was released in September 2010, and translated the title beginning with this volume (and current printings of the first volume are now also marketed under that title). The third volume was released on July 12, 2011, containing episodes 11–15. Each volume contains English and Japanese audio, as well as special features such as music videos, clean openings/closings, voice bloopers, and the third volume contains an audio commentary with several of the English voice actors. Two more volumes were released on June 30, 2012 for volume four and July 1, 2013 for volume five.

The rest of the series was released as a five-disc boxset; the Season 2 Collection, released on September 30, 2014. However, this set is in Japanese with English subtitles only.

Plot

Prior to Ganbaruger arriving to Earth, an evil organisation which was named the Evil Empire (ジャーク帝国, Jāku Teikoku) comes to Earth with the intent to conquer and despoil it. From their fortress they launch a missile that will flood the world with (Akudamas (アークダーマ, Ākudama)), eggs of darkness which hatch into evil monsters called (Evil Beasts (邪悪獣, Jāku Jyū)) based on things that annoy or frustrate humans.

The "guardian of light" Eldran appears, an Ultraman-like entity who is sworn to protect the universe and Earth in particular then appears. Using the heroic robot Raijin-Oh, Eldran attempts to thwart the Evil Empire by preventing a missile from striking Earth. What happens instead is that the missile detonated against Eldran, throwing Raijin-Oh down to Earth. The robot crashes into Japan's Hinobori city(日昇町 (Hinobori Chō)), elementary school Hinobori School.

Eldran must leave to continue protecting the Earth, so he leaves the duty of defeating the Evil Beasts to a 5th grade classroom full of children, Earth Defense Class (地球防衛組, Chikyuu Bouei Gumi) in the school where he crashed. He entrusts the children with Raijin-Oh, granting each child a different role to perform in either operating or supporting Raijin-Oh. Eldran also transforms their school itself, so it can transform into a command center when Raijin-Oh is needed. Jin, Asuka and Kouji are chosen to lead Raijin-oh, but every day they have many amusing experiences in the school. Jin does not want to study, while his friends do and force him to do it by tickling him.

Characters

Earth Defense Class (地球防衛組, Chikyuu Bouei Gumi)

Jin Hyuga (日向 仁, Hyuuga Jin)
Voiced by: Rica Matsumoto

Jin Hyuga is a leader in Earth Defense Class, the main pilot of Ken-oh and Raijin-Oh and God Raijin-Oh. He is brash, a braggart, and very good at sports. He has spiky hair, is boss of the kids, and has a strong sense of justice. His student number is the eighth. He often quarrels with Maria, but they trust each other. His parents run a sake shop, the Hyuga Store.

Asuka Tsukishiro (月城 飛鳥, Tsukishiro Asuka)
Voiced by: Rie Iwatsubo

Asuka Tsukishiro is the main pilot of Hou-oh, and flight and altitude controller for Raijin-Oh, God Raijin-Oh. He is a handsome, smart, rich, realist, but a vain and timid boy. He is very popular with girls in the class, and has his own fan club. His student number is seventh. Hiryu Tsukishiro is his cousin, who is the pilot of Ryu-Oh.

Koji Hoshiyama (星山 吼児, Hoshiyama Kouji)
Voiced by: Mari Maruta

Koji Hoshiyama is the main pilot of Jyu-oh, also the power controller for both Raijin-Oh and God Raijin-Oh, and all-weapon controller. He is kind-hearted, timid but courageous, has a pair of binoculars, and he believes in UFOs and aliens. His student number is ninth.

Maria Shiratori (白鳥 マリア, Shiratori Maria)
Voiced by: Konami Yoshida

Maria Shiratori is a commander in the Earth Defense Class, and the main pilot of Bakuryu-oh. She is smart, strong-willed, daring, has a ponytail, and is half Japanese and half French.

Tsutomu Kojima (小島 勉, Kojima Tsutomu)
Voiced by: Bin Shimada

Tsutomu Kojima is the advisor in the Earth Defense Class, and computer operator. Tsutomu is a smart, polite, stubborn, and a typical nerd with bobbed hair and thick glasses who likes to study and research. He has done an analysis of the robots of Eldran. The mad scientist of the Saurers, Takako Kojima is Tsutomu's relative and cousin, who he respects her.

Kirara Haruno (春野 きらら, Haruno Kirara)
Voiced by: Kyoko Minami

Kirara Haruno is mainly an operator with the outside. Kirara is an honest, frank, fluffy long-haired girl, and is a broadcasting committee member. She wants to be a newscaster, and is Asuka's fan club president.

Akira Imamura (今村 あきら, Imamura Akira)
Voiced by: Kyoko Minami

Akira Imamura is an operator of core robots's starting system and weapon selector of Bakuryu-oh. Akira is a pretentious sore loser and a punk boy who wants to be a rock star, and had put the mesh in his hair.

Reiko Ikeda (池田 れい子, Ikeda Reiko)
Voiced by: Saori Suzuki

Reiko Ikeda is mainly an operator with Raijin-Oh. Reiko is a lively, curious, big almond-shape eyed girl who is a big wrestling fan, and she troubled with the fact that she's the shortest student in the class. She is in love with Tsutomu.

Miki Mano (真野 美紀, Mano Miki)
Voiced by: Saori Suzuki

Miki Mano is the energy gauge manager, launcher of Bakuryu Cutter fire, and safety manager of Bakuryu-oh's weapons. Miki is diligent, but quickly gives up, and is a member of the breeding committee.

Hiroshi Takamori (高森 ひろし, Takamori Hiroshi)
Voiced by: Mami Matsui

Hiroshi Takamori is a vice-commander in the Earth Defense Class, safety manager of Raijin-Oh's weapons, and sub pilot of Bakuryu-oh. Hiroshi is the male representative of the class, and is usually inconspicuous, but trusted. He's in love with Cookie, his childhood friend.

Orie Ishizuka (石塚 織絵, Ishizuka Orie)
Voiced by: Mami Matsui

Orie Ishizuka, known as "Potato", is Hou-oh's all sensor systems monitor, and Raijin-oh's damage counter. Orie is a generous, strong-willed, chubby girl who loves potato chips.

Yoko Kuriki (栗木 容子, Kuriki Youko)
Voiced by: Rie Iwatsubo

Yoko Kuriki, known as "Cookie", is Raijin-oh's radar operator. Cookie is a short, big-eyed girl who likes adorable things, but has strong dependence on others and can't do anything on her own. Her own teddy bear turns into an evil beast in episode 11.

Yoshiaki Ogawa (小川 よしあき, Ogawa Yoshiaki)
Voiced by: Tomoe Sato

Yoshiaki Ogawa, known as "Yoppa" is Ken-oh's circuit-based monitor, and Bakuryu-oh's transformation manager. 'Yoppa' is an own-pacer, lacking in cooperation, fat boy with spiky hair, who's somehow lovable.

Tokie Sakai (坂井 ときえ, Sakai Tokie)
Voiced by: Tomoe Sato

Tokie Sakai is Jyu-oh's sensor systems monitor, and Bakuryu-oh's damage counter manager. Tokie wears overalls, meddles, and likes super heroes. She became friends with Osekkaizar, the evil beast from episode 36.

Hidenori Kondo (近藤 ひでのり, Kondo Hidenori)
Voiced by: Konami Yoshida

Hidenori Kondo is Raijin-oh's radar operator. Hidenori is a super-rich, small, kind-hearted, polite, shy boy.

Daisuke Sato (佐藤 大介, Satou Daisuke)
Voiced by: Kozo Shioya

Daisuke Sato is Ken-oh's circuit system monitor, launcher of Bakuryu Cannon fire, and main mechanic of robots. Daisuke is the tallest and biggest student in the class, but a gentle, shy boy, and the eldest son of large family.

Yu Izumi (泉 ゆう, Izumi Yuu)
Voiced by: Megumi Hayashibara

Yu Izumi is a commander in Earth Defense Class, and main pilot of Bakuryu-oh. Yu is sickly, shy, timid, and has braided hair. She is the tallest girl in the class.

Aiko Shimada (島田 愛子, Shimada Aiko)
Voiced by: Ai Sato , Rica Matsumoto(since episode 37)

Aiko Shimada, known as "Love" is Ken-oh's sensors system monitor, and Bakuryu-oh's pulse checker. Aiko is a mature, tall girl who is good at sports, and is a physical education committee member.

Other

Shuntaro Shinoda (篠田 俊太郎, Shinoda Shuntarou)
Voiced by: Kiyoyuki Yanada

The 25-year-old Homeroom teacher of 5th Grade Class 3 in Hinobori Elementary School, known as the Earth Defense Class. Mr. Shinoda is a young passionate teacher who loves the students, but he has often been disturbed a lesson by Evil Beasts.

Ruruko Himeki (姫木 るる子, Himeki Ruruko)
Voiced by: Megumi Hayashibara

A 23 year old kind, beautiful public health doctor in Hinobori Elementary School. Mr. Shinoda has a crush on her.

Eikichiro Yazawa (矢沢 永吉郎, Yazawa Eikichirou)
Voiced by: Toshiro Ishii

The 65-year-old principal of Hinobori Elementary who is a good supporter for 5th Grade Class 3. he's master of Tai Chi, also adviser of Kenpo club. He has a pet goat that is named Carol.

General Takeda (武田長官, Takeda Choukan)
Voiced by: Tomomichi Nishimura

General of the Defense forces. He had objected to the children fight but cooperates with them later. In Genki Bakuhatsu Ganbaruger, he has a daughter who went by the name of Katsura.

Eldran (エルドラン, Erudoran)
Voiced by: Bin Shimada

Eldran is Earth's guardian. 400 years ago prior to Raijin-Oh, Ganbaruger, Gosaurer and Daiteioh's appearances, Eldran has sealed Gokuark and had been fighting against Gokuark but it results into transforming into a white dragon at the demon world. He is the warrior of light who gave Raijin-oh to the Earth Defense Class in order to defeat the Evil Empire. He also later gives out Ganbaruger in Aozora, Gosaurer in Harukaze and Daiteioh in Gokuraku as the years progress one by one.

Jark Empire (ジャーク帝国, Jāku Teikoku)

Emperor Warusa (皇帝ワルーサ, Koutei Wruusa)
Voiced by: Shigezō Sasaoka

Ruler of the Jark Empire, that exists in the five dimensions.

Belzeb (ベルゼブ, Beruzebu)
Voiced by: Kiyoyuki Yanada

Commander in Jark Empire, also main pilot of Jark Satan. Belzeb is a handsome, quick temper, strict warrior with long purple hair. The creatures in five dimension are able deform their own bodies like the amoeba, and have the power of teleportation.

Falzeb (ファルゼブ, Faruzebu)
Voiced by: Megumi Hayashibara

Belzeb's Alter ego, Falzeb is small woman look-like fairy with silver-haired and kimono. living in sub-space in Belzeb's chest, Falzeb turns devil face at the time irradiation the Jark Power.

Taidar (タイダー, Taidaa)
Voiced by: You Yoshimura , Mahito Tsujimura(since episode 39)

Belzeb's subordinates. Taidar is a happy-go-lucky, leisurely, faithfulness, bearded plump man with punk fashion. He often gets an outburst of anger from Belzeb and Falzeb. Taidar is hired at Hyuga Store later, he appeared as a minor character also Genki Bakuhatsu Ganbaruger frequently.

Gokudo (ゴクドー, Gokudoo)
Voiced by: Akio Ōtsuka

Appears at the OVA, a new evil guy from Jark Empire.

The Robots

Ken-Oh (剣王, Ken-Oo)

Ken-Oh (literally "Sword King") is a humanoid robot, piloted by Jin, the leader of the trio. It has a sword called the Ken-Oh Blade, which protrudes from the shield on Ken-Oh's back when needed. It forms the torso of the Raijin-Oh.

Hou-Oh (鳳王, Hou-Oo)

Hou-Oh (literally "Phoenix King") resembles a phoenix. It is piloted by Asuka, and is the fastest of the trio. Hou-Oh forms the arms and wings of Raijin-Oh.

Juu-Oh (獣王, Juu-Oh)

Juu-Oh's (literally "Beast King") appearance is that of a lion, and is controlled by Kouji. It forms the legs of the Raijin-Oh and the lion head is used as a shield which contains the Raijin Sword. Juu-Oh is the strongest of the trio.

Raijin-Oh (ライジンオー/雷神王, Raijin-Oo)

Raijin-Oh (literally thunder god king)is the first Eldran robot before Ganbaruger was the second. If the enemy becomes too powerful for the trio to handle individually, all three robots will combine, and they form into Raijin-Oh, a large humanoid robot with wings. In the early parts of the series, Raijin-Oh will trap its opponent with a beam from the Raijin Shield and finish it off with the Raijin Sword.

Bakuryu-Dragon (バクリュウドラゴン, Bakuryuu-Doragon)

After the evil commander Belzeb (short for Beelzebub or Satan) was given a giant crystal robot named Jaaku Satan by Emperor Warza (literally "evil emperor") to assists the Jaaku Beasts in destroying Raijin-Oh, the Raijin-Oh soon realized that it was unable to defeat its enemies alone. At the brink of defeat, the Earth Defense Class managed to uncover one last robot, Bakuryu-Dragon bears the appearance of a dragon but can transform into a humanoid robot, Bakuryu-Oh.

Bakuryu-Oh (バクリュウオー, Bakuryuu-Oh)

Bakuryu-Dragon's humanoid form. As strong as Raijin-oh, its arsenal includes a cannon and a shield.

God Raijin-Oh (ゴッドライジンオー, Goddo Raijin-Oo)

The Raijin-Oh and Bakuryu-Oh can further combine to form the ultimate robot, God Raijin-Oh. In the early parts of its appearance, God Raijin-Oh finishes off Jaaku Beasts with a cannon. Soon after the God Raijin-Oh Sword is discovered and is used since then to defeat Super Jaaku Beasts (Jaaku Satan combined with a powered-up Jaaku Beast).

Cultural impact

Raijin-Oh was a tremendously popular series at the time of its release, spawning two similar sequels and OVAs. This led to waves of similar TV shows in the early 90s, where a child or children were made into the pilots of giant robots. This was a significant change of pace for the mecha genre, which usually pursued an older demographic and used teenage or adult characters as pilots.

Raijin-Oh success would inspire future shows like Gear Fighter Dendoh , Machine Robo Rescue , Tomica Hyper Rescue Drive Head Kidō Kyūkyū Keisatsu , and Shinkansen Henkei Robo Shinkalion . The spiritual successors contain many plot elements that directly similar to Raijin-Oh's premise, characters, but, with the exception of not having a school to house the robots or an Eldran-like being to create them. Otherwise, Raijin-Oh had little worldwide impact, despite some success in Southeast Asian countries like China and Taiwan.

Raijin-Oh was featured in the New Century Brave Wars game, along with several of the Yuusha series robots, also created by Sunrise at around the same time. The reason for this was likely to have been the similarities between the Yuusha series and the Eldran trilogy, that and both series were animated by Sunrise. The toy company which made the Yuusha series, Takara would later merge with Tomy and thus both companies had access to each other's toy ideas, hence why Raijin-Oh was part of the video game. However the other two Eldran series, Genki Bakuhatsu Ganbaruger and Nekketsu Saikyo Go-Saurer were not included; in fact, a few of the Yuusha series robots were also left out of the game. Raijin-oh, Ganbaruger, and Gosaurer may have been included in the Brave Saga New Asteria game.

Raijin-Oh has appeared in several installments of Banpresto's Super Robot Wars series of games. It has appeared in Super Robot Wars GC and its remake, Super Robot Wars XO, Super Robot Wars NEO , and Super Robot Wars BX. This is in part due to the fact that the Super Robot Wars series largely concerned itself with '70s and '80s series at the time the game series began in the early '90s. As of 2009, Raijin-Oh is nearly 20 years old and therefore old enough to be nostalgic to adult gamers. It is not clear why Raijin-Oh had only appeared in the 3D Super Robot Wars games that appear on Nintendo consoles, as opposed to the more popular 2D games that appear on PlayStation systems and Nintendo handhelds until the release of BX.

Episode list

Original AirdateEpisode numberTitle
April 3, 19911"Raijin-Oh arrives!"
April 10, 19912"We are the Earth Defense Class"
April 17, 19913"Test is how big an annoyance!?"
April 24, 19914"Protect the field of flowers!"
May 1, 19915"Decision! Unrivaled dragon tail"
May 8, 19916"Survive the traffic war!"
May 15, 19917"Taking care of drunkard"
May 22, 19918"Absolute union of friendship!"
May 29, 19919"Blowing away moldy feelings"
June 5, 199110"The town where gasoline vanished"
June 12, 199111"Cookie's nightmare"
June 19, 199112"The pool is too hot"
June 26, 199113"Get back the baby!!"
July 3, 199114"Final match! Baseball"
July 10, 199115"Fly at Mach 9!"
July 17, 199116"Crash course in returning the shot!"
July 24, 199117"Teacher is a Jaaku beast!?"
July 31, 199118"Presentation! Earth Defense Class' secrets"
August 7, 199119"Seaside School is in chaos!!"
August 14, 199120"Maria has disappeared!"
August 21, 199121"The enemy is Raijin-Oh!?"
August 28, 199122"Departure! The invincible warrior"
September 4, 199123"Come forth! Absolutely Invincible Union!!"
September 11, 199124"Dog/cat panic plan!"
September 18, 199125"Getting the scoop!!"
September 25, 199126"Great African battle!"
October 2, 199127"Defeat the earthquake"
October 9, 199128"Garuma's competition of fear!!"
October 16, 199129"Appear! Super Jaaku beast"
October 23, 199130"Jaaku beast is a friend?"
October 30, 199131"Fierce battle! Channel war"
November 6, 199132"Adventure in the haunted house"
November 13, 199133"Terror! Dancing Jaaku beast"
November 20, 199134"Skiing is too cold"
November 27, 199135"Vanished Commander"
December 4, 199136"Jaaku beast is an ally of justice!?"
December 11, 199137"Graffiti revolt"
December 18, 199138"Psychic Jin"
December 25, 199139"The celebration is a troubling thing"
January 8, 199240"Belzeb's great approach"
January 15, 199241"Kidnapping of the absolutely invincible"
January 22, 199242"Protect the secret of the school!"
January 29, 199243"Super Giant Reiko Appears!"
February 5, 199244"Decisive micro-battle!"
February 12, 199245"Broadcast! Earth Defense Class facts!!"
February 19, 199246"Taida becomes an Earthling"
February 26, 199247"Adult to child chaos!?"
March 4, 199248"Transformation! Black Taida"
March 11, 199249"Appear! Jaaku Empire"
March 18, 199250"Defeat Emperor Warza!"
March 25, 199251"Our dream is absolutely invincible!"

OVA List

Original AirdateOVA numberTitle
August 26, 19921"5 Nen 3 Kum 3 Memorial Page! (Room 5 Class 3?)"
September 30, 19922"Epic War for First Love!"
December 16, 19923"Story of the Nobori Castle Robot of Light Daydream"
February 24, 19934"Everyone is the Earth Defense Class"

Game Appearances

The series first appeared on Sunrise Eiyuutan for the Dreamcast. Later on, it was included on Super Robot Wars GC for the Nintendo GameCube and again in Super Robot Wars XO for the Xbox 360.

Raijin-Oh is again included as an entry in the Super Robot Wars series of video games, beginning with Super Robot Wars NEO for the Wii along with the other 3 Eldran robots.

It also appeared in New Century Brave Wars on the PlayStation 2 in Japan to establish the first official connection between the Eldran and Yuusha series, following the merger of Takara and Tomy.

It would later appear as one of the various Sunrise animated robots as a playable character in the RPG Battle of Sunrise, to celebrate the studio's 30th anniversary, released on the PlayStation 2.

There also exists a Game Boy fighting game published by Tomy in 1991, which has been translated into English through a fan-made patch.

Raijin-Oh, once again, is included in the Super Robot Wars series in Super Robot Wars OE and Super Robot Wars BX. BX is notable to be the first time Raijin-Oh appeared in a 2D Super Robot Wars game.

Preceded by
Matchless Raijin-Oh
1991–1992
Succeeded by
Genki Bakuhatsu Ganbaruger

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