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Monday, November 17, 2003


Sony Television has released character descriptions for the upcoming Astro Boy animated series on Kids' WB!.

Following is a rundown:


Astro is a super robot. He is imbued with super strength and uniquely amazing abilities: 100,000 horsepower strength; eyes that can function as searchlights and see through objects; hearing 1000 times superior to that of the average human. He has jets and rockets built into his feet and arms, which allow him to fly at super speeds, and laser beams can be projected from his fingertips. Astro is also capable of remote communication with other robots. However, the quality that makes him superior to other robots is his artificial brain, the most advanced in the world. This unique quality allows Astro to experience all of the same emotions as humans, termed kokoro in Japanese. Although Astro has the same set of emotions as humans, he lacks a sense of fear. He is naively pure with a boyish spirit. Astro has a straightforward sense of justice. Sometimes his innocence shocks the adults he encounters; sometimes they cruelly reject him. But no matter how corrupt the world he encounters, Astro always sees the best in people, often bringing out the goodness they never knew was there.

Astro struggles to understand what it means to be a robot in a world dominated by humans. He constantly searches for a way to bring humans and robots together, and in the process; Astro discovers his own destiny.


Dr. Tenma created Astro while grieving for his deceased son -- a creation he planned to keep secret. Dr. Tenma initially treats Astro lovingly as if he were his real son, but unable to fulfill his lost son's place, Tenma shuts Astro down, burns the Ministry of Science to the ground and flees. He establishes a secret laboratory in the mountains and continues his research into advanced robotics.

Attracted by his genius-like abilities, many people come to him and ask him to create illegal robots, and for exorbitant fees, he does -- but always with his own dark agenda in mind. His desire to create more advanced robots is a manifestation of his desire to become their ultimate master and rule the new robotic world. As Astro "grows up," Tenma realizes that he created a robot that can potentially surpass humans. From the shadows, Tenma continues to watch over Astrošs activities and to engage in various secret machinations.


Dr. O'Shay discovers Astro after being elected to head up the newly re-built Ministry of Science. O'Shay brings Astro back to life and soon realizes his special powers. He is Astro's mentor, and surrogate father. A compassionate roboticist, Dr. O'Shay is the successor to Dr. Tenma at the Ministry of Science. Dr. O'Shay can be stubborn, and somewhat over-emotional. Widowed at a young age, Dr. O'Shay has never had a chance to create a family, and he thus treats his robots like members of his own family, and lives with them. One of the first humans to detect the emergence of a true mind-heart in rapidly evolving robots, he begins to believe they should be entitled to rights, like humans. Under Dr. O'Shay's direction, the Ministry of Science becomes a refuge for robots who are in trouble, and those with problems often rely on him for help. Dr. O'Shay believes robots and humans should be friends and live in peace.


Zoran is Astro's younger sister. She also possesses super strength but cannot fly or use weapons. Zoran has one unique gift Astro does not -- she can communicate with animals. Zoran is mischievous, ever curious and quick-witted. She's proud of her heroic big brother, but she has a tendency to get herself and Astro into a lot of trouble.


Yuko is Dr. O'Shay's assistant -- professional, detail oriented, but a bit of a control freak. Her helper, Momo, is an "ostrich-like robot" that can be folded up into a suitcase. Yuko shows a softer maternal side when dealing with Astro.


Robita is Dr. O'Shay's housekeeper and Astro's occasional babysitter. A futuristic "Hazel" with wacky wiring, Robita flusters easily and has trouble keeping an eye on Astro.


Detective Tawashi is in charge of the Special Investigations Unit, focusing on robot crimes and other violations involving the misuse of science and technology. Tawashi is emotional and volatile. He tends to be critical of robots, and believes that robot laws should be more restrictive.


A robot "knight" who tries to liberate robots enslaved by humans. Leading a cataclysmic robot revolt, he inflicts harm on humans and thus violates the fundamentals of "Robot Law." Blue Knight enlists his liberated robot friends and announces the formation of an independent nation for robots: Robotania.


Atlas is originally a kind robot mistreated by his millionaire owner, which causes him to malfunction. The millionaire hires Dr. Temna to re-build the robot, and in an act of revenge, Dr. Temna programs the robot to rebel. This new, rebellious robot is much more powerful than Astro, but lacks Astro's unique "kokoro." Adopting the powerful name Atlas, he jets into action -- his goal is to act out in every possible way.


Astro's best friend, and a model student.


Big, rough, but ultimately likable. At first he harasses Astro for being a robot, but over time both grow to understand each other and become friends. Abercrombie and Kennedy are often at odds.


A geeky brain with self-esteem issues. Alejo often panics when he's caught in the middle of conflicts between Kennedy and Abercrombie.


Reno is a boy genius in the field of robotics, and one of Astrošs good friends. A human child raised by circus robots, he is now an apprentice to Dr. O'Shay at the Ministry of Science.

Astro Boy Volume 2 TPB Astro Boy Volume 2 TPB

As Mickey Mouse is to American animation, so to anime and manga is Astro Boy, the quintessential creation of Osama Tezuka, one of the world's revered giants of comics and animation. Dark Horse brings the original Astro Boy manga to America for the first time in an English-language edition, translated by Frederick L. Schodt, renowned for his work on Ghost in the Shell and for his books on Japan, including Manga! Manga! In this volume, Astro Boy comes to the aid of Gravia's robot president to prevent his overthrow at the hands of a secret anti-robot society; a robot magician is cloned as a setup to start a movement against intelligent robots, and only Astro Boy can expose the conspiracy; and Astro Boy defends a powerful robot race car from an evil gang in the globe-spanning Equator Race! Astro Boy is an all-ages delight, as fresh, exciting, and innovative today as when it was created forty years ago. Everything is Go, Astro Boy! This volume contains the following stories: His Highness Deadcross The Third Magician White Planet

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