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Giant Robots and Gun-Toting Children from the Manga That Inspired ‘Gigantor’

I don’t think I’m breaking any new ground here when I say that Giant Robots are Awesome. I mean, it’s just science: Robots alone are pretty rad, but making them giant adds a whole new dimension, especially once they start smashing stuff. That’s why I was totally stoked today, when posted a gallery of truly awesome covers from the manga Tetsujin 28 by Mitsuteru Yokoyama.

Released in America as Gigantor, which is fondly remembered for the rollicking theme song that touted the title robot as being “bigger than big, taller than tall, quicker than quick, stronger than strong,” Tetsujin 28 is one of the cornerstones of giant robot manga, and the covers are every bit as awesome as you’d expect from that pedigree. Check out a few of my favorites after the jump!

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the plot, Tetsujin 28 revolves around the title robot (literally translated as “Iron Man #28″), who was, as you might expect, the 28th in a series of super-weapons created during World War II. This, of course, led to plots where Tetsujins #1 – 27 showed up, occasionally wearing totally awesome velvet coats:

Since construction on #28 didn’t finish until after the war was over, the unstoppable super-weapon wasn’t used for military service, but rather given to its creator’s ten year-old son. This seems remarkably irresponsible, even by manga standards. Fortunately, the young Shoutarou Kaneda (“Jimmy” in the American version) was a good kid who worked as a boy detective.

Which is why he’s almost always shown packing heat.

I’m pretty sure Shoutarou’s collection of machine guns didn’t make the cut to the American version, but even if they had, I’ve got to say that’s total overkill. I mean, you’ve got a robot that’s stronger than strong.

Do you really need a fun-sized forty-five to get things done?

Then again, when you’re constantly faced with problems involving giant Frankensteins, tiny little dudes with machine guns…

Giant Metal Dinosaurs…

Pointy-headed egg-robots…

The Incredible Hulk…

And the undeniable scourge of hydroelectric dams….

…it probably pays to have a little extra “insurance,” even if you are ten years old. Then again, the age of 10 is also the magic year when kids are sent out into the woods alone to have magic animals shoot lightning at them, and I guess if you can handle that, a pistol doesn’t present much of a problem.

Even with all those threats, though, my favorite enemy for Tetsujin 28 is this guy:

That thing is a monster. It says so right on his chest.

For more, check out the amazing full gallery here!

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