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Anime of the Year 1977 - Araiguma Rascal


There are no masterpieces in 1977 for me. Among the 6s, Araiguma Rascal is my choice.
 
1. Time Bokan Series: Yatterman タイムボカンシリーズ ヤッターマン [1977-I] Tatsunoko Production (Dropped 3/22)
Tags: Mecha Adventure, Comedy
A mysterious gem called the "Skull Stone" is said to be able to reveal the location of the largest vein of gold in the world. This legend has entranced many people who wanted to get their hands on fame, power and wealth, including the trio of villains in this show: the "Dorombo Gang." However, their hunt for the Skull Stone is not as easy as they imagined, mainly due to the faulty information they receive from their leader, and most of all, by a justical duo of pursuers called the "Yatterman"!
Time travel series without time travel - that's awkward ! Anyway, all the gang and concept is taken from the time travel series, but to show different locations time travel is not really needed. This time the gang takes most of screen time, so they are probably the protagonists. The goodies duo, plus robot dog yatterman are older than they were in original Time Bokan , but rather boring just as then. Also need to note that level of comedy and craziness is higher as robot dog Yatterman has weird method of attack - usually summoning mechanical insects or animals. Overall, I don't see conceptual difference with original Time Bokan, thus the same score.  
Overall Rating: 5/10
 
2. Araiguma Rascal Raccoon Rascal あらいぐまラスカル [1977-I] Nippon Animation (Dropped 3/52)
Tags: Historical, Pets Drama, Slice of Life
Life in Brailsford Junction, Wisconsin, is simple and quiet for Sterling North, who spends most of his free time caring for animals. With his mother in the hospital and his brother fighting on the Western Front, the boy lives only with his father and his dog Hauser.
One weekend, cutting away from his usual chores, Sterling, his friend Oscar, and Hauser head off on a fishing trip. On their way to the river, his dog catches a scent at the base of a tree. Unearthing a raccoon's nest, the two boys find an orphaned kit. A passing hunter has killed the kit's mother to make a fur hat, leaving Sterling to adopt and care for the orphaned raccoon.
Torn by his fracturing family, a brother in the trenches, along with the ailing health of his mother, Sterling's bonds with life and the world around him are kept together and strengthened by life with his new friend, the "ring-tailed wonder" and scoundrel, whom he names Rascal.
Close to Durrell books about animals. Good for children, but I can't find a reason to continue watching it as an adult.  
Overall Rating: 6/10
 
3. Jetter Mars ジェッターマルス [1977-I] Toei Animation (Dropped 3/27)
Tags: Mecha Action, Drama, Sci-Fi
In 2015 A.D., Dr. Yamanoue, the Secretary of the Science Ministry, who devotes himself assembles the Android robot on an artificial island. He intends to live together with him as his own son. But the robot has a deficiency in his electric brain. He comes to the conclusion that Dr. Kawashimo's help is essential to correct his defective rain. Although they are friends, they are rivals not only in private life but also in scientific study. Dr. Yamanoue is very jingoistic and only thinks of the robot as one of his strategic arms. On the contrary, Dr. Kawashimo is a pacifist and devotes his affection to robots.
Dr. Kawashimo hurries to the island on request of Dr. Yamanoue, taking his pretty young daughter Miri with him. Arriving on the island, Dr. Kawashimo sets the electric brain into Jet Mars, a robot boy. Thus Mars comes into the world. Everything is new to Mars and he doesn't know what is good or bad. On the next day he lifts Dr. Kawashimo and Miri up onto the building. When he sees a glint of moisture in Miri's eyes, he has a mysterious feeling in his mind. Then he asks Dr. Yamanoue what it is. He is taught that it is a tear a weak girl sheds, but, a strong man never does.
One day, the electric brain of Fainton, another robot, is put out of order. So Fainton goes-on a wild rampage and the island is plunged into a crisis. When the seawater runs into the facilities from the big hole made by Fainton, only Mars stands in amazement and is quite at a loss what to do just then Miri exhibits her ultra ability and covers the big hole. Led by her, Mars also carries a sheet of iron and makes repairs. At last they rescue Dr. Yamanoue and Dr. Kawashimo from being washed by seawater. Miri is the robot made by Dr. Kawashimo. Mars learns how to cry and learns how to perform a kind deed.
I've no idea why not just call it Astroboy 2 , the similarities are striking. Maybe legal rights or something. Anyway, just one girl partner, very simplistic in most areas.  
Overall Rating: 4/10
 
4. Sekai Meisaku Douwa: Hakuchou no Ouji The Wild Swans 世界名作童話 白鳥の王子 [1977-I] Toei Animation (Finished 1/1)
Tags: Fantasy
When a widower king loses his way in a dangerous forest, he is forced to take a witch's daughter as a second wife in order to escape. However, the newly crowned queen Greta quickly becomes jealous of the time the king spends with his children and vows her revenge. In the middle of the night, Greta sneaks to where the children are sleeping and turns six of the king's sons into swans, leaving the only daughter, Elisa, to fend for herself.
Elisa travels far and wide in the search for her brothers and finds them living in a remote cave. While she rejoices at their reunion, she sees how terribly the curse has affected her brothers and promises to set them free at any cost.
Just an adaptation of Andersen fairy-tale, a pretty faithful one, so don't know what to discuss here.  
Overall Rating: 4/10
 
5. Ashita e Attack! Attack on Tomorrow あしたへアタック! [1977-II] Nippon Animation (Dropped 3/23)
Tags: School, Team Sports 
This drama tells the story of girls in high school. Girls who love to play volleyball form a team in their school. Although the team starts out as a weak and unorganized sport club, over time the girls’ extraordinary passion and endeavor enables their team to become one of the best organized and highly recognized teams at the school. Now they aim to win the championship in the National High School Volleyball League. Although it is painful and hard to achieve such a goal, it is nice to have friends to share the feeling, especially the joy. Through volleyball, the girls learn and experience many lessons in life as they grow up. Let’s share their laughter.
It seems to be some unofficial spinoff of Attack No.1 that I never cared about. This one is very similar, just with more humor.  
Overall Rating: 4/10
 
6. Wakusei Robo Danguard Ace Dangard Ace 惑星ロボ ダンガードA[エース] [1977-II] Toei Animation (Dropped 3/56)
Tags: Shounen Mecha, Military, Space Sci-Fi
In order to explore the newly discovered planet, Promethe, there are many projects are running all over the world.
Here in Japan, under the direction of Dr. Oedo, "Space Carrier Jasdum" and "Planet Robot Dangard A" are being built. Ichimonji Takuma is a candidate for the pilot of Dangard A. His father, Ichimonji Dantetsu, was a famous space pilot.
However, Dantetsu went missing after a mysterious accident, and the people blamed him for the accident. In order to clear his name, Takuma is trying to become a space pilot and succeed in the project. Will Takuma become the pilot?
Of course he will, but would want to watch it. What we get is pilot action alongside solving mystery and gradually getting into space as playground. Very little humor and no real partners, so expected rating.  
Overall Rating: 3/10
 
7. Chogattai Majutsu Robot Ginguiser  超合体魔術ロボ ギンガイザー [1977-II] Nippon Animation (Dropped 3/26)
Tags: Shounen Mecha Adventure, Sci-Fi
Twenty thousand years before the creation of mankind, two tribes-Plazmans and Sazorions-came to the earth. The bellicose Sazorions tried to conquer the peaceful Plazmans using the dreadful power of the Scorpio in outer space.
Twenty thousand years later-at some time in the future-Dr. Godo, the only survivor of the Plazmans, secretly prepares Ginguiser, the combined magic robot troop, to defend peace in the event that the Sazorions are revived. Dr. Godo commands four brave young men to acquire occult super powers.
Each episode of this series features a sequence of fabulous and fantastic battles. These scenes cannot fail to arouse the interest and excitement of the audience, and will be certain to catch every eye.
Mecha , characters and humor all looks very similar to Blocker Gundan IV Machine Blaster to the extent that I seriously consider it to be a spinoff or something. Anyway, same kind of trash.  
Overall Rating: 3/10
 
8. Gasshin Sentai Mechander Robo Combining Squadron Mechander Robo 合身戦隊メカンダーロボ [1977-IIWako Productions (Dropped 2/35)
Tags: Mecha, Military, Space Mystery, Sci-Fi
The Doron Empire from the Ganymede System discovered Earth as an ideal world for them to conquer. The interest of expanding the empire came as a result of the power-hungry General Ozmel who overthrew the current reigning Queen Medusa of the Ganymede System as a start of their universal conquest.
Almost completely succumbed to the empire, Earth is at its last days, and one scientist, Dr. Shikishima, had only one hope in restoring Earth from its alien conquerors--- a massive mecha known as the Mechander Robo, specially programmed and designed to battle these invading aliens from complete takeover of Earth. Along with this awesome fighter machine, Dr. Shikishima also recruited three pilots to be placed behind the Mechander Robo's controls--- the mysterious Jimmy Orion, the scientist's son Ryosuke Shikishima, and Kojiro Hachijima.
Although the primary storyline is Earth battling the Doron Empire, there is something within lead pliot Jimmy Orion's past that was somewhat connected towards the entire storyline.
Another pilot ace action turning into mecha and with mystery of protagonist's past. Good job running roughly the same concept as Wakusei Robo Danguard Ace the same season. This one is a more straightforward and more team-oriented though. Could they all at least stop making mecha red and white or roughly the same form? Anyway, trash .  
Overall Rating: 3/10
 
9. Hyouga Senshi Gaislugger 氷河戦士ガイスラッガー [1977-II] Toei Animation (Dropped 2/20)
Tags: Mecha Action, Sci-Fi
A cyborg warrior from an ancient Antarctic kingdom awakes 30000 years later from an accidental hibernation to find the Earth changed and an old alien enemy on the verge of invasion. It's up to Guyslugger to use his ancient technology to defeat the aliens.
Now a direct Cyborg 009 imitation with younger and much less cooler team. I see an attempt to add more primitive humor. It's still better than average mecha, so a four.  
Overall Rating: 4/10
 
10. Chou Denji Machine Voltes V 超電磁マシーン ボルテスV [1977-III] Toei Animation (Dropped 3/40)
Tags: Shounen Mecha Action, Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi
From out of nowhere, a mysterious alien race known as the Boazan Forces has invaded the Earth. A group of individuals specially trained to handle this kind of situation has been unleashed. Kenichi, Ippei, Daijirou, Hiyoshi & Megumi are the pilots of the Choudenji Machine Voltes V (5), Earth's defense against the Boazan and their terrible Beast Warriors. The plot thickens as the Go Brothers discover their true heritage and the truth behind their father's disappearance. Conflicts and mixed emotions hinder the Go Brothers at times but due to their unwavering desire to find their dad, they must go to the place where it all started. With the help of the rebels based on Earth and on the aliens' homeworld, the Voltes Team has another mission, remove the tyrant Zu Zanbajil and liberate the people of Boazan.
It comes in trilogy with Chou Denji Robo Combattler V, and they look almost identical to me characters-wise and concept-wise. Characters have different specializations this time, but it's a bad excuse to make another same looking anime. Quality is still better than rivals due to varied team and some humor.  
Overall Rating: 5/10
 
11. Seton Doubutsuki: Kuma no Ko Jacky Monarch: The Big Bear of Tallac シートン動物記 くまの子ジャッキー [1977-III] Nippon Animation (Dropped 3/26)
Tags: Historical Adventure, Drama
One day a native American boy named Lan meets two little bears at the foot of the Sierra Nevada, where he lives with his father.
Lan names the brother bear ‘Jacky’ and the sister bear ‘Jill’. As Lan plays with the two bears, they become good friends. However their happiness doesn’t last for long. Lan’s father accidentally shoots the two little bears’ mother to death. Feeling sorry for them, Lan decides to take Jackie and Jill back home to live with him.
We've seen girl of the prairie Laura, but we have not seen a boy protagonist in these circumstances yet. As usual, can't say it's bad - it's just for children. And I have serious questions about structure as first episode is devoted exclusively to the dog, second to the bears and third to children, and all those episodes have zero shared characters.  
Overall Rating: 5/10
 
12. Choujin Sentai Baratack 超人戦隊バラタック [1977-III] Toei Animation (Dropped 3/31)
Tags: Mecha Adventure, Sci-Fi
Late at night, at a lake surrounded by a peaceful forest, a mysterious spaceship landed on the water. The group that emerged from that ship kidnapped the head of space engineering, Professor Katou, and his family.
The Professor's second son, American football player Yuuji, who had run away from home was in the middle of a game and knew nothing of what had happened.
The four young people watching him were Mark, Dickey, Franco, and Yuri. They were a team of four psychics who had been training in a secret base. They had seen the previous night's events and believed them to be an alien attack. Believing their only option to be the transforming robot Baratack, they used their psychic powers to kidnap Yuuji.
Baratack could only move by combining the powers of Yuuji and the other four acting as one. When all five, including the astonished Yuuji, cried "Pentagoras Unite!” Baratack emerged. Yuuji was overcome with a violent rage, his fighting spirit burning to defeat the Golteus reptile army.
Bland immature characters, primitive humor, another reshuffling of all elements used before numerous times.  
Overall Rating: 3/10
 
13. Uchuu Senkan Yamato (Movie) Space Battleship Yamato 宇宙戦艦ヤマト [1977-III] (Finished 1/1)
Tags: Adult Cast, Military, Space Drama, Sci-Fi
In the year 2199, the Gamilon race declares war on humans, intent on taking Earth for themselves. The fighters on Earth do everything in their might to keep the planet stable, but alien technology proves to be far too advanced, and the resulting destruction renders the surface of planet Earth completely uninhabitable. The underground shelters are also becoming weak, and if nothing changes, humans will become extinct in less than a year.
But just when all seems lost, Queen Starsha from the planet Iscandar offers a helping hand. The key to victory lies in the Cosmo-Cleaner D, which can eliminate the radiation that Earth is suffering from. However, the only way to get a hold of this life-saving device is if someone from Earth goes to Iscandar―148,000 light years away―to retrieve it. The problem is, they have less than a year before time runs out.
The fate of the entire human race lies in the hands of the crew of a salvaged WWII craft, the Space Battleship Yamato.
As expected, a lot of things were cut from the recap, especially relations (even pervy robot) and non-essential episodes not dealing with three Gamilon bases on Mars, Neptun and Pluto. Surprisingly, some scenes are added to make departure feel more organized and planned and at the same time more pressed with a new threat bomb. As for me, main series is not that long with 26 episodes, so this recap should be used only to get general idea before watching new seasons of Space Battleship Yamato.  
Overall Rating: 6/10
 
14. Lupin III: Part II 新・ルパン三世 [1977-IV] Tokyo Movie Shinsha (Dropped 3/155)
Tags: Seinen Adult Cast Action, Adventure, Comedy, Mystery
Lupin III chronicles the adventures of Arsene Lupin III, the world's greatest thief, and his partners in crime: master marksman Daisuke Jigen, beautiful and scheming Fujiko Mine and stoic samurai Goemon Ishikawa XIII. Lupin and his gang travel around the globe in search of the world's greatest treasures and riches and always keeping one step ahead of the tireless Inspector Zenigata, who has vowed to bring Lupin to justice.
Main difference is that Lupin now acts with three allies as a team from the start. That's definitely more enjoyable, yet it's same random action adventures with inventive solutions.  
Overall Rating: 5/10
 
15. Muteki Choujin Zanbot 3 Invincible Superman Zanbot 3 無敵超人サンボット3 [1977-IV] Sunrise (Dropped 3/23)
Tags: Shounen Mecha Action, Drama, Sci-Fi
There once existed a planet named Beal, until it was wiped out by the mysterious entity known as Gaizok. The few remaining survivors escaped to Earth and split into three families, named Jin, Kamie, and Kamikita respectively. While attempting to start a new life, the collectively known "Jin Family" prepared for the inevitable Gaizok invasion on Earth and its giant mechanical beasts known as "Mecha Boosts". In order to defend their new home, they have built three vehicles which when combined form the mighty Zambot 3. The Jin Family must not only defend against Gaizok attacks, but also harsh criticisms from the very people they protect, who blame the Jin Family for the invasion in the first place.
As usual, number in the title means the number of protagonist pilots. Drawing and animation quality are high, but main characters are too young, pretty much recently from kindergarten. It adds a lot of trial and error, but overall complexity suffers. Sunrise animation technology is much better than oldschool studios. It feels like some fresh air in the stale genre.  
Overall Rating: 5/10
 
16. Arrow Emblem Grand Prix no Taka Super Grand Prix アローエンブレム グランプリの鷹 [1977-IV] Toei Animation (Dropped 3/44)
Tags: Racing Drama
An anime with much of wheel actions ... Takaya Todoroki, a young man who wants to become a famous driver and built a car to be able to participate in a race with a big prize. In the race, because of the poor quality of building, Takaya has a serious accident in which he wrecked his car but he doesn`t hurt himself. That`s when a mysterious driver contact Takaya to enter onto some famous racing team...This mysterious man is a former driver .. a very famous one who appears every now and then to help Takaya fight his own destiny, to set him on the right track and most of all prove himself, unlike him.
Usual racing action, even without battle cars. One protagonist and one teacher, one sidekick heroine. It's hard to imagine anything more boring.  
Overall Rating: 2/10
 
17. Ore wa Teppei My Name Is Teppei おれは鉄兵 [1977-IV] Nippon Animation (Dropped 4/28)
Tags: Shounen Action, Sports
Teppei, brought up by his father in the mountains, is an energetic boy who is as tough as weeds and acts as free as a bird. His life changes completely when he enrolls in high school, the first school he has ever attended. Despite his eccentric behavior and being a constant source of troubles, he is soon recognized for his talent in sports—especially in Kendo (the Japanese swordplay art)—and becomes the school's hero.
Protagonist is strong, but too young and immature. There is enough humor, but it's mostly about a wilderness boy ignorance. Again, no faint desire to watch it to the end.  
Overall Rating: 5/10
 
18. Kyouryuu Daisensou Izenborg 恐竜大戦争アイゼンボーグ [1977-IV] (Dropped 3/39)
Tags: Mecha Action
Japan is being besieged by evil Dinosaurs that humanity have long thought extinct, they are back and are creating disaster. To counter the threat, a special team of expert warriors called Izenborg were created. Lamees and Kamal use their special powers to combine into Super Izenborg to battle the evil Satola and his Dinosaur army.
This anime... is not anime, part three. It's basically the same Kyouryuu Tankentai Born Free , just with fighting dinosaurs instead saving dinosaurs. Also there seems to be a bit more animation here. Anyway, same repelling fake with same boring characters.  
Overall Rating: 3/10
 
19. Chou Supercar Gattiger 超スーパーカー ガッタイガー  [1977-IV] Nihon Keizai Koukokusha (Dropped 1/25)
Tags: Racing Action, Sci-Fi
A scientist invents 5 special solar powered cars that can be joined into one supercar. The cars are given to the scientists son and his friends to compete in the racing circuit, but they are pursued by an evil organization that wants the secret of solar power.
Another species in cheap fake anime series. It's actually mostly animation, but zoomed plans of toy cars are used. Simplistic development and straightforward characters confirmed.  
Overall Rating: 0/10
 
20. Shin Kyojin no Hoshi 新巨人の星 [1977-IV] Tokyo Movie Shinsha (Dropped 3/52)
Tags: Team Sports
A continuation of the popular baseball saga about the star pitcher of a professional baseball team.
Only for fans of the original, thus not for me. Dead serious and solo-focused and thus inferior to Dokaben, in my opinion.  
Overall Rating: 4/10
 
21. Gekisou! Rubenkaiser 激走! ルーベンカイザー [1977-IV] Toei Animation (Dropped 0/17)
Tags: Shounen Racing 
A race car driver competes around the world in a race car left to him by his father.
Not found.  
Overall Rating: 0/10
 
22. Manga Nihon Emaki まんが日本絵巻 [1977-IV] (Dropped 3/46)
Tags: Historical
Animated adaptations of traditional and historical Japanese stories. Each episode features 2 different stories.
It's a bit more amusing than fairy-tales, but this is not strictly a history show, more like a collection of mythology stories involving samurai with all kinds of demons and monsters present, so of little real value to me.  
Overall Rating: 5/10
 
23. Manga Ijin Monogatari まんが偉人物語 [1977-IV] Group TAC (Dropped 0/46)
Tags: Historical
From Genghis Khan to Thomas Edison, each episode in this series focuses on the life and achievement of two of history's greatest and most important persons.
Not found.  
Overall Rating: 0/10
 
24. Tobidase! Machine Hiryuu とびだせ! マシーン飛竜 [1977-IV] Toei Animation (Dropped 3/13)
Tags: Shounen Parody, Racing Comedy
The bosses of rival car companies decide to fight each other in the sporting arena by backing different race car teams. Chairman Gapporin hires Okkanabichi the supreme racer, while Chairman Misaki hires Riki Kazama, a relatively untried driver for the flying car known as Machine Hiryu. Mixing elements of Speed Racer with Time Bokan, this Tatsunoko production ticks the same boxes, with Riki's cute girlfriend Nana, mini-mechanic Chuta, the cute ape and pooch, and the comic and glamorous villains lurking in the background. Early work from many big names, including Yoshitaka Amano and Kunio Okawara, is strictly in the studio mould. Manga versions of the story ran in several magazines, such as Terebi Magazine and Terebi Land. Racing fever seemed to have struck the Japanese animation business at this time: compare to the same year's Arrow Emblem.
Basically, it feels like Time Bokan prequel as two antagonists are the same, just before greedy professor assistant joined them. Just races on battle cars of the good team resembling that of Yatterman and the gangster team. Same parody gimmicks are present.  
Overall Rating: 4/10

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My very first impression on 1977 would be that there's a lot of robot anime here. Anyway other than Araiguma Rascal here is 1977 World Masterpiece Theater series, I did remember that Yatterman was also aired in Indonesia with the opening was changed into Indonesian version that was sang by female singer instead of male singer (Both lyric are pretty much tell the same thing in different language). Also you're right that the protagonists duo are pretty much boring even though the opening song is shilling them for an obvious reason, although it's because the villain trio is more interesting. It's really telling when 2015 anime of Yatterman did focus on the villain team descendant rather than the main duo, even though the anime here is titled Yatterman (ie the duo) and not Doronjo (ie the villainess who lead the villain trio). No comment on pseudo time travelling here other than I remember one episode that was based on Joan of Arc and it's more because of the name change, and that's all for my comment in regard of 1977 anime.

Edited by littleshogun
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