Your pocket guide to Japanese superheroes.
25 Mar 2015 - 5:49 PM  UPDATED 25 Mar 2015 - 5:51 PM

As with all lists, this one is far from being a definitive list because... Well, there are J-pop shows and videogames to play!

Consider this your pocket guide to Japanese superheroes, the core superheroes of past and present that should make a good basis for you to explore the word of superheroes from Japan!


1. Nobanagun

A school girl who possesses the gene-seed of Nobunaga (seriously, if the exploits of Nobunaga don’t get you interested in history, nothing will!).

This means her arm turns into a gun and she can shoot stuff. She’s amazing.

2.Motoko Kusanagi

"Oh, but she’s not a superhero, she’s a robot!" I hear people say. But I choose to believe she’s like Batman, just with the gadgets on the inside. Plus, cyborgs can be classed as superheroes, take for instance, Cyborg from the D.C universe or the supervillian, and all round horrible individual, Donald Pierce from Marvel. Also, we're talking Japanese Superheroes, if you don’t like superheroes who are robots, you’re going to have a bad time.


3. Kamen Rider

Fighing against the Shocker Riders for the good of humanity the story behind the Kamen Rider in intriguing and captivating.  The franchise has made a huge impact on the world (apparently astrologer Akimasa Nakamura even went so far as to name two minor planets named after the series). There is actually more than one Kamen Rider, so you have a few to choose from.

If you enjoy Kamen Rider you might also get a kick out of the Rolling☆Girls anime. It's not quite the same thing, but some of the suits are very similar!

4. Astro Boy

See? Now aren’t you regretting your poorly constructed arguments about why robots can’t be superheroes!
He’s a boy, he could be mistaken for a small plane, he’s ASTRO BOY!

Jet powered boots, eye lamps, lasers in his fingers, able to speak any language and also a pretty swell kid! Astro Boy rights the wrongs and tries to bridge the gap between humans and robots.

5. Sailor Moon


The pretty Sailor Guardian who’s going to punish you (if you're a bad guy) in the name of love!

Anyone who’s nail polish can dry that quickly, is surely a superhero! But she’s so much more than that. She's deeply caring of those around her and fairly unafraid of the looming darkness that seeks to devour our world…. Look, you just have to watch it, okay?

6. Ultraman

You know how in the Marvel universe (and Norse mythology), Thor is up against frost giants who want to destroy the Earth? Well, Ultraman is like the opposite of those guys. Ultraman is a solar powered giant who protects the Earth (from Thors that want to destroy it? No. That’s not a storyline they’ve investigated - YET!). He’s one of many Ultra Crusaders who look out for Earth.


Which Japanese Superheroes do you love? Is there an obscure one that I missed out, but we should all totally know more about?


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