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Anime Classics 1960-1969

Not all anime classics may be worth watching in full in our current era, but they do make an interesting watch (for a few episodes) to understand the importance they had in the industry and how they serve as an inspiration to later works. During this era, most shows have a very similar look & feel initiated by Astro Boy and they are aimed at children, despite having lots of violence, so many scenes were censored for American audiences. They also contain moral lessons within the story. The list is organized in chronological order.
1 Alakazam the Great

Alakazam the Great

This film involved Osamu Tezuka, "the father of manga" in animation, do I need to say more?

'Saiyūki, lit. 'Journey to the West' is a 1960 Japanese musical anime film, based on the Chinese novel Journey to the West, and was one of the earliest anime films to be released in the United States. Osamu Tezuka was named as a director of the film by Toei Company. However, Tezuka later stated that the only time he was in the studio was to pose for publicity photos. His involvement in promoting the film, however, led to his interest in animation.

The film was released in the United States by American International on July 26, 1961. For the American release, a few scenes were heavily edited and rearranged and bandleader Les Baxter was hired to compose a new soundtrack.

Despite a large marketing budget and heavy promotion, the film was unsuccessful in America. The Los Angeles Times called it 'warm, amusing and exciting... the art work is really excellent.' It was included as one of the choices in The Fifty Worst Films of All Time, and is the only animated film featured in the book.' -Wikipedia

'Alakazam was released in 1960.  Screenshots may deceive you into thinking this is a badly animated film.  You'd be wrong.  The animation is magical to say the least.  With transforming, mystical beings and beautiful landscapes, Alakazam's artwork was way ahead of its time.  Some might even compare Alakazam to early Disney works...

Despite its age, Alakazam the Great still remains as captivating as ever.  With an engaging and family friendly story about morality, humility, mercy and wisdom Alakazam appeals to all ages.  While the plot itself may be predictable, the underlying morals and entertaining characters make this the great classic that it is.' -Wander

2 Astro Boy (1963)

Astro Boy (1963)

The Single Most Influential Anime of All-Time!

'Astro Boy, known in Japan by its original name Mighty Atom, lit. 'Iron Arm Atom', is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Osamu Tezuka. The story follows the protagonist, Astro Boy, an android with human emotions who is created by Umataro Tenma after the death of his son. Astro Boy has become one of the most successful manga and anime franchises in the world, making it the tenth best-selling manga series of all time. Astro Boy has been praised for its importance in developing the anime and manga industry. It has been featured on numerous greatest anime of all time lists and has partially inspired other authors in the creation of influential manga.

The television series that premiered on Fuji TV on New Year's Day, 1963, became the first popular animated Japanese television series that embodied the aesthetic that later became familiar worldwide as anime.

Astro Boy was initially very popular, being the first Japanese animated television series to make it to U.S. televisions, with the highest ratings of any show at the time. However, its popularity eventually declined to the point where only 104 of the 193 original episodes were released in the U.S., the reasons being mainly that it was still in black and white when most televisions were switching to color and many of the storylines were considered too violent and depressing for the mainstream audience.

It was named the 86th best-animated series by IGN, calling it the first popular anime television series. In February 2004, Cinefantastique listed the anime as one of the '10 Essential Animations', citing the show's 'dark themes and Tezuka's use of sci-fi as a conduit to address such issues as war and intolerance.'' -Wikipedia

'Here we have it folks, the single most influential anime of all-time! it's kinda funny because it looks nothing even close to anything coming out nowadays. Astroboy helped developed anime in so many ways from the sci-fi genre, episodic shows, common anime features still used to this day: (enlarged eyes, round features, shading ect.). But still even though it did help shape the eastern animation style in a big way Astroboy actually drew very little on traditional japanese styles; from the Disney-ish art style to the avant-garde sci-fi nuance's of the 1927 classic Metropolis, Astroboy ends up with this strange mix between childish inocents and harsh reality. The show doesn't suger coat much of anything, actually sometimes the reality can be a little to harsh for poor little Astro but threw it all he plays the perfect little boy scout always doing the right thing and trying to save the day. While it may look dated compared to the latest Madhouse show, Astroboy was a ground breaking, innovative and ahead of its time masterpiece that is still a blast to watch 50+ years down the line.' -Vorosh

9 ANIME THINGS THAT ASTRO BOY DID FIRST

3 Tetsujin 28-gou

Tetsujin 28-gou

The First Giant Robot Anime Ever Made! 

'Tetsujin Nijūhachi-gō, lit. 'Iron Man No. 28' is Adapted from a 1956 manga written and illustrated by Mitsuteru Yokoyama, who also created Giant Robo. The series centers on the adventures of a young boy named Shotaro Kaneda, who controls a giant robot named Tetsujin 28, built by his late father using a remote control. The series is credited with featuring the first humanoid giant robot controlled externally via remote control by an operator.

Despite the fact that the Tetsujin 28-go manga (which debuted in 1956) predates the Marvel Comics character Iron Man (who debuted in 1963), Tetsujin 28-go (which literally means 'Iron Man No. 28') could not be released as Iron Man in North America due to the Marvel character Iron Man appearing in that market before Tetsujindebuted there, so the series was renamed Gigantor for the American version.

To say that this show carries an incoherent plotline is an understatement! Is more like a dream, when you change the setting without noticing and then you wake up and laugh as to how incoherent it was but you didn't notice while you were sleeping. For example, at some point they're chasing the bad guy on foot, then on the stairs, then he flies away in a balloon while the heroes in a helicopter, but the helicopter is not fast enough to catch the bad guy! LoL.

Legacy:

  • Shotaro's name was borrowed by Katsuhiro Otomo for the protagonist of his manga, Akira. He also borrowed the name Shikishima for the colonel and has stated in the Akira Club book that it could be said that Akira is based on Tetsujin 28-go.
  • Guillermo Del Toro has cited the series as an influence on his movie Pacific Rim, depicting a series of battles between human-controlled giant robots and giant alien monsters.

' -Wikipedia

'But wait, there is another thing that this anime left behind in the anime world. Not only it initiated the Giant Super Robots genre, but it also gave its name to a whole kinky subgenre. Believe it or not, just like Lolita was the name of a girl that gave its name to lolicons, Shotaro the lead boy in this series, gave his name to the shotacons. Not that it is erotic in any way, it’s just that many found it very bold for such a nice looking boy wearing short pants working for the police and having a much more mature behavior than its age dictates. Apparently some found this an excuse to fill in the name of their kinky subgenre. Hell, that was enough to get a spot in history even if it weren’t the first of its kind. 

Anyways, this is a series that worked as the cornerstone of all mecha to follow. It set the rules and was simple enough to work with them. It will hardly seem interesting today as it has no real twist. Just like Atom, it also received various remakes; one in the 80’s. another in the 90’s, yet another in the mid 2000’ , none of which managed to rekindle the interest but still prove that just like Atom, the franchise is not forgotten.' -roriconfan

4 8 Man

8 Man

'8 Man or Eightman is a manga and anime superhero created in 1963 by science fiction writer Kazumasa Hirai and manga artist Jiro Kuwata. He is considered Japan's earliest cyborg superhero, predating even Kamen Rider(the same year, Shotaro Ishinomori created Cyborg 009), and was supposedly the inspiration for RoboCop.

8 Man was ranked ninth in Mania Entertainment's 10 Most Iconic Anime Heroes written by Thomas Zoth, who commented that, 'Before Cyborg 009The Six Million Dollar Man, and Robocop, there was 8 Man: The first cyborg manga and anime hero. Building on Astro Boy, 8 Man helped to shape the trajectory of robot and cyborg heroes for the next decade.'' -Wikipedia

5 Da Nao Tian Gong

Da Nao Tian Gong

'Havoc in Heaven, also translated as Uproar in Heaven, is a Chinese donghua feature film directed by Wan Laiming and produced by all four of the Wan brothers. The film was created at the height of the Chinese animation industry in the 1960s, and received numerous awards. It earned the brothers domestic and international recognition. The story is an adaptation of the earlier episodes of the Chinese novel Journey to the West.

The stylized animation and drums and percussion accompaniment used in this film are heavily influenced by Peking opera traditions.

Influence

The name of the movie (大闹天宫) became a colloquialism in the Chinese language to describe someone making a mess. Countless cartoon adaptations that followed have reused the same classic story Journey to the West, yet many consider this 1964 iteration to be the most original, fitting and memorable.' -Wikipedia

6 Shounen Ninja Kaze no Fujimaru

Shounen Ninja Kaze no Fujimaru

As far as I know, this is The First Ninja Anime Series. 'Also known as 'Samurai Kid' and 'Fujimaru of the Wind: The Childhood of a Ninja' (I guess at the time westerns didn't know that Samurai was very different from Ninja and just sounded better to them), is a Japanese anime series produced by Toei Animation. It tells the story of a ninja's pupil that controlled the wind.

It was based on the manga "Ishimaru of the Wind" (Kaze no Ishimaru) by Sanpei Shirato and was animated by Yasuji Moriand Hayao Miyazaki. The anime was renamed 'Kaze no Fujimaru' in order to associate it with its sponsor, Fujisawa Pharmaceuticals.' -Wikipedia

7 Prince Planet

Prince Planet

'This was one of the earliest Japanese anime television series transmitted on American television in the United States in the mid-1960s.

It tells the story of a member of the Universal Peace Corps, originally from the planet Radion, coming to Earth on a mission to determine if this world meets standards for membership in the Galactic Union of Worlds and assist its inhabitants during his stay. While on his mission, Prince Planet adopts the identity of an Earth boy named Bobby and gains comrades who work together alongside him fighting forces of evil, both alien and terrestrial.

Two factors contributed to the hasty demise of Prince Planet as a desirable property for domestic broadcast, one being the fact that monochrome programing was becoming less desirable to television stations with the ever-growing popularity of color television. The other was negative parental reaction to cartoons that contained what was perceived as excessive violence for children's television. Whilst he was fighting for right, Prince Planet's opponents were often killed when they faced off against him, and this was obvious even despite editing of the dubbed prints to remove violent scenes. Prince Planet kills Warlock and Krag in the last two episodes before returning home to Radion, and they were not the only villains he blasted away with his pendant.

In addition to human violence, the Prince was not overly sensitive to Earth fauna either. For instance, in one episode, he transformed a whale into transportation for his friends, effectively killing the whale. Even so, Prince Planet is known to have been televised in the U.S.A until around 1976 in the Chicago area (WSNS-TV Channel 44) on stations hungry for afternoon TV for children to watch after school, and the program claimed many faithful adherents throughout the sixties and those later years. It was also televised on WUTV channel 29 Buffalo, New York, in the summer of 1975.' -Wikipedia

This show looks and feels very similar to Astro Boy, but in a different setting.

8 Kimba the White Lion

Kimba the White Lion

First Color TV Anime Series.

'Janguru Taitei, lit, Jungle Emperor, is a Japanese shōnen manga series created by Osamu Tezuka. The animated series was first broadcast in Japan on Fuji Television from October 6, 1965, to September 28, 1966. The anime series has enjoyed popularity worldwide.

The Lion King Controversy

As a number of media journalists and fans watched Disney's animated feature film The Lion King they noticed characters and events in the story resembling those of Kimba. Although the two works follow different screenplays, there are strong artistic similarities, and The Lion King contains numerous sequences that closely match Kimba′s. Other similarities are thematically deeper and more pronounced, such as that both feature the theme of the circle of life. The similarity is alluded to in a scene from The Simpsons ('Round Springfield' episode), where a parody of Mufasa in the clouds tells Lisa Simpson, 'You must avenge my death, Kimba...er, I mean Simba!'.

Upon the release of The Lion King in Japan, multiple Japanese cartoonists including Machiko Satonaka signed a letter urging the Walt Disney Company acknowledge due credit to Jungle Emperor Leo in the making of The Lion King. 488 Japanese cartoonists and animators signed the petition, which drew a protest in Japan, where Tezuka and Kimba are cultural icons.' -Wikipedia

9 Rainbow Sentai Robin

Rainbow Sentai Robin

The First Anime to Feature a 5-Unit Superhero Team!

Reinbō Sentai Robin, lit. 'Rainbow Squadron Robin') is an anime and manga created by Shotaro Ishinomori.

'A distant planet, far off in space named Palta is facing the doom of extinction. There are only two years left until their ultimate demise. Palta looks to Earth to cultivate resources and begins attacking it in hopes of taking over. Earth turns to a boy named Robin, who owns many robots. Robin's father is an alien from Palta who was sent to Earth as a spy, but fell in love with a human. Robin's father, Dr. Polto, and mother, Sumiko, are forcibly taken back to Palta, but his father makes numerous robots for him before they leave. The robots are named Lili, Wolf, Benkei, Pegasus, Professor, and Bell, and all have unique superpowers of sorts.' -Wikipedia

10 Cyborg 009 (1966)

Cyborg 009 (1966)

This show is credited with giving Japan its first team of super-powered heroes and an early example of a super-team consisting of a diverse and multinational cast.

Adapted from a manga created by Shotaro Ishinomori. This show has seen several adaptations over the years and has influenced many works and characters.

11 Mahou Tsukai Sally

Mahou Tsukai Sally

First Magical-Girl & Shoujo Anime Series!

'Also known as 'Sally the Witch' or 'Sunny the Witch' is one of the popular anime magical girls of what would eventually become a genre in Japan. Due to its characteristics, may be considered the first shōjo anime as well; while titles such as Himitsu no Akko-chan predate Sally in manga form, the Sally anime predates Himitsu no Akko-chan's, which came out in 1969.

Sally the Witch was also one of the first ongoing anime series produced. The series was originally in black and white but due to its success, later episodes were produced in color. The anime series was produced and aired from 1966 to 1968 in Japan by Toei Animation. The series never received a U.S. broadcast but was aired in other several countries under different names. Depending on the country, she's called Princess, Magician or Witch.

The 1989 series is a sequel to the original, in which an older Sally returns to the human world, reunites with her old friends, and embarks on a new round of magical adventures.

The main strength of Sally the Witch lays in its strong characterizations and detailed continuity. The basic storyline would be incorporated into many later magical girl TV anime shows and manga, particularly the concept of a magical princess relocating to the human world. Toei animation reutilized the same concept in Mahō Tsukai Chappy, 1972, and Majokko Megu-chan, 1974, but later become a recurrent basis for the magical girl theme, with later unrelated characters such as Sailor Moon, or even foreign productions such as Lolirock or Star vs. the Forces of Evil using the same base plot.

Author Robert Jay Lifton stated that Sally Yumeno 'has long been one of the most popular of all manga and animation characters.' ' -Wikipedia

12 Speed Racer

Speed Racer

As far as I know, this is The First Racing Anime Series!

'Also known as Mach GoGoGo, adapted from the manga of the same name by Tatsuo Yoshida, founder of Tatsunoko Productions. The actual manga was inspired by Yoshida’s earlier, and more popular automobile racing comics, Pilot Ace. Pilot Ace’s main storyline would form the structure for Mach GoGoGo, which followed the adventures of an ambitious young man who became a professional racer. The characters’ designs in Pilot Ace would set the main ground for the character design in Mach GoGoGo. Yoshida got his idea for the story after seeing two films that were very popular in Japan at the time, Viva Las Vegas and Goldfinger. By combining the look of Elvis Presley's race-car driving image, complete with neckerchief and black pompadour, and James Bond's gadget-filled Aston Martin, Yoshida had the inspiration for his creation.

The name of the series, Mach GoGoGo has a triple meaning: 'Mahha-gō' is the name of the car; the name of the main character is Gō Mifune; and finally, it contains the English word, go. In the American adaptation, the Mach 5 stems from the number 5 on the door. Although, in Japanese, go is the word for the number 5, the Kanji character  which is used in the car name actually means 'item number' (i.e. it is an ordinal suffix). In addition, gogogo, is used as a general Japanese sound effect for rumble. Taken together, the program's title means, 'Mach-gō, Gō Mifune, Go!' In the American version, this would translate into 'Go, Speed Racer, Go!'

The anime adaptation actually became a bigger success than the manga' -Wikipedia

This is one of the few classics that I do recommend watching. Although is old, the quality of the animation is excellent for its time and the story and comedy remains as relevant and fun.

'As old as Speed Racer is its still a blast to watch. Its fun too see all the ways they tried to preseve the budget by moving the camera around in a panorama style and using stills of Speeds face while we hear the voiceover voice speeds thoughts.  For being so old the show is actually somewhat violent with many fatal car crashes and explosions.' -SurfinDead

The dub is great!

13 Princess Knight

Princess Knight

First Shoujo Portrayal of a Female Superhero & Androgynous-Like Heroine

'Also known as Ribon no Kishi, is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Osamu Tezuka. This manga follows the adventures of Sapphire, a girl who was born accidentally with a blue heart of a boy and a pink heart of a girl. She pretends to be a male prince to prevent the evil Duke Duralumin from inheriting the throne of Silverland. The gender-bending main character was inspired by the all-female musical theater group Takarazuka Revue in which women performed both female and male roles.

The story was ordered by one editor of Kodansha's magazine Shōjo Club who wanted Tezuka to produced a manga aimed towards a female audience that could replicate the success of his former boy-aimed stories.

One of Tezuka's most famous works and widely regarded as a classic, Princess Knight has been very influential in the manga and anime industry.

Its portrayal of gender roles is ambiguously interpreted by critics; some claim it has pro-feminist ideals and others think it expresses misogynist ideals of the 1950s–60s Japanese society. Nonetheless, it would start a tradition of androgynous-like heroines and establish several trends in the shōjo genre. In fact, it is considered to be one of the first works in this genre that was narrative-focused and that portrays a female superhero. 

Multiple critics have provided many possible interpretations on the presence of gender ambiguity and androgynyon Princess Knight. Patrick Drazen, author of the book Anime Explosion!, stated the androgyny in the series is 'deceptive' as it addresses gender instead of sex, and more 'specifically, gender-role expectations.' Tezuka's Gekiga: Behind the Mask of Manga's Philip Brophy summed up it as: 'With its visualization of masculinity and femininity within one body it was able to depict conflicting selves within one-sexed body under pressure for social conformity, hence literally embodying the quest for identity and subjective agency'.

Widely considered a classic, Princess Knight was very popular with girls in Japan by the time of its original release. One of the author's most popular works in Japan, it has been labeled as 'a fascinating piece of anime history ... that's withstood the test of time' by Bamboo Dong of ANN.

Legacy

Princess Knight marks the first time Tezuka used his 'story comic' format—which uses a narrative structure and cinematic techniques—in a shōjomanga. The series changed the concept of shōjo from gag comics or strips teaching 'good behavior' to narrative-focused works, and thus is considered the first modern work of the genre. It also established elements that would be common in late works of the genre, including an idealized foreign (from a Japanese perspective) settings, a heroine with large eyes, and gender ambiguity with a certain amount of androgyny.

The manga is considered to have started the genre of female superheroes, and regarded as a prototype for the magical girl genre.

This work expanded the scope of Japanese popular culture, giving the possibility of explore a wider range of sexual orientations, which goes beyond clear gender binary homo- or heterosexuality.

Featuring the first gender-ambiguous heroine, it influenced many works, specially shōjo, such as The Rose of Versailles, which facilitated shows like Revolutionary Girl UtenaThe Sword of Paros and Sailor Moon's Sailor Uranus.

It has also influenced several stage musicals since the 1980s and inspired remakes of the work by other authors.' -Wikipedia

14 Ougon Bat

Ougon Bat

The World's First Comic Book Superhero! Yes, even before any Marvel & DC Comics Superheroes like Superman, Batman & Captain America!

'Ōgon Batto, literally 'Golden Bat' and also known as 'Phantaman', is a Japanese superhero created by Suzuki Ichiro and Takeo Nagamatsu in 1931 who originally debuted in a kamishibai (paper theater a form of street theater). Ōgon Bat is considered to be the world's first comic book superhero, and is a precursor to later superhero characters such as the Japanese kamishibai character Prince of Gamma (debut the early 1930s), and the American comic book characters: Mandrake the Magician (1934), Superman (debut 1938), Batman (debut 1939), Captain Marvel (1939), and Captain America (1941). Earlier folkloric heroes like Robin Hood (1938) & Thor (1962) did not appear in comic book form until later dates.

Ōgon Bat was created by sixteen-year-old Takeo Nagamatsu and twenty-five-year-old Suzuki Ichiro in 1931 and was named after the Golden Bat cigarette brand. The two were inspired by drawings of mythological characters in Tokyo's Ueno Royal Museum to create a new hero based on science rather than mythology. The character debuted in a kamishibai, a type of traveling show in which a sequence of pictures are shown, narrated by a storyteller. The character was popular enough to survive the decline of kamishibai following World War II, and was eventually adapted into manga (including one by Osamu Tezuka) and anime.

Ōgon Bat is a being from ancient Atlantis who was sent forward in time 10,000 years to battle evil forces threatening the present day. He has a golden skull-shaped head, wears a green and white swashbuckler outfit with a high-collared red cape, and carries a rapier. He lives in a fortress in the Japanese Alps. His superpowers include superhuman strength, invulnerability, and the ability to fly. Ōgon Bat has an evil counterpart known as Kurayami Bat ('Dark Bat'). His main enemy is Dr. Erich Nazō, the leader of a crime syndicate bent on world domination, who wears a black costume and mask with bat-like ears, a red eye and a blue eye.' -Wikipedia

15 Horus: Prince of the Sun

Horus: Prince of the Sun

First Collaboration Between Isao Takahata & Hayao Miyazaki!

'Also known as The Little Norse Prince, is an anime film released in July 1968. The directorial feature film debut of Isao Takahata, it is also the first major film by Hayao Miyazaki, which later co-founded Studio GhibliHorus marked the beginning of a partnership that would last for the next 50 years across numerous animation studios.

Though it would later be recognized as one of the first defining works of modern Japanese animation, the film was a commercial failure, and Takahata was demoted. Unable to further improve his standing at Toei, Takahata left the studio in 1971, along with Miyazaki and Yōichi Kotabe.

Vivid, visceral and violent, yet charged with kinetic energy, Horusintroduced a number of technical and stylistic innovations, and established a new paradigm of Japanese animation: adult storytelling, psychological realism, visual complexity, overt political and social themes, and stylistic violence. This is the first Japanese animated feature to successfully disrupt the Walt Disney paradigm, an  greatly expanded the possibilities of the medium beyond 'children's cartoons.' Unsuccessful in its original 1968 theatrical run, Horus, Prince of the Sun is today recognized as a milestone in the history of anime.

In his Anime Explosion, Patrick Drazen mentions the film as a pivotal work in the evolution of animation and writes that the 10-day theatrical showing was either a sign that Toei studio executives were unable to recognise quality or a ploy to get back at Union organizers like Miyazaki and Takahata, who didn't direct for the company again. Drazen notes that the ending scenes in the film were thinly disguised rallying cries for the union and student movements of the time, by whom the film was well received.

Drazen is among the analysts who makes note of the conflicted heroine Hilda, and writes that the character comes across as complex, working sometimes for good and sometimes for evil, and can be seen as the first in a long line of multidimensional heroines in the oeuvre of Takahata and Miyazaki.' -Wikipedia

16 Sabu to Ichi Torimono Hikae

Sabu to Ichi Torimono Hikae

One of the few shows aimed at adults, due to mature themes.

'Sabu to Ichi Torimono Hikae (Sabu and Ichi's Detective Memoirs), sometimes translated as 'Sabu and Ichi's Detective Stories/Tales' and 'Sabu and Ichi's Arrest Warrant', is a series by Shotaro Ishimori, the same author of Cyborg 009.

The series follows the adventures of Sabu, a young Edo bakufu investigator traveling with the blind master swordsman Ichi. In their travels, they assist the common people in solving mysteries and righting wrongs (usually committed by bandits or corrupt officials). Sabu is engaged to Midori, the daughter of his boss, who works as a police officer for the Tokugawa shogunate.' -Wikipedia

17 Youkai Ningen Bem

Youkai Ningen Bem

One of The First Animes with Themes of Monsters & Demons!

Yōkai Ningen Bem, translated officially as 'Humanoid Monster Bem'. It was created directly for television rather than adapted from a manga. The animation quality and character designs are awesome for its time, far better than other animes of the same years.

'The plot of the series revolves around three yōkai (supernatural creatures), Bem, Bera and Bero, who arrive at a large coastal cityand come across an evil atmosphere, which was brought about by immoral behavior by humans and mischief caused by monsters and yōkai. They therefore decide to stay in the city, fighting against other monsters and yōkai which attack humans, making a few friends along the way. Even though the three yōkai are often abused and discriminated against by other human beings due to their appearance, they still strive in protecting the human populace of the city from other monsters, one day hoping to become human beings in return for their good actions.' -Wikipedia

18 Himitsu no Akko-chan

Himitsu no Akko-chan

First Magical Girl Transformation!

"Himitsu no Akko-chan (The Secrets of Akko-chan) is a popular pioneering magical girl manga and anime that ran in Japan starting in 1969.

The manga was drawn and written by Fujio Akatsuka, and was published in Ribon from 1962 to 1965. It predates the Mahōtsukai Sunny manga (whose name became Sally in the Mahōtsukai Sally anime), printed in 1966. However, that title is the first magical girl anime as Himitsu no Akko-chan was not broadcast until 1969." -Wikipedia

While Sally was born in the magical realm with her own powers and knows little about the human world; Akko-chan is a human that gains her powers through a mirror that allows her to transform into anything she wishes, hence this is the first magical girl transformation ever!

19 Kaitei Shounen Marine

Kaitei Shounen Marine

'Marine Boy was one of the first color anime cartoons to be shown in a dubbed form in the U.S., and later in Australia and the United Kingdom.

It was originally produced in Japan as Dolphin Ouji (Dolphin Prince), as a short experimental trial series of only three episodes and filmed in black and white, Dolphin Prince aired on Fuji TV. It was a well-received experiment and Terebi Doga prepared to produce a full series follow-up, although this time they decided that their program would be produced in color in order to maximize the potential of the production, both artistically and commercially.

However, not all Japanese studios had converted their operations to color. To complicate matters, not all Japanese networks were interested in buying expensive color film series. Fuji, however, declined to buy into the project. Undeterred, Terebi Doga found external sponsorship from the Matsushita Company (later to be known as National Panasonic Matsushita), and sold their new version of Dolphin Prince to rival TBS Network. Character names were altered, (changing 'Dolphin Prince' to 'Marine Kid' and 'Neptuna' to 'Neptina'), characters were added and concepts expanded. In order to distance the new series from the original trial episodes, the series was re-titled Hang On! Marine Kid, which was canceled after its first batch of 13 episodes and not renewed due to low ratings.

Despite its cancellation, Hang On! Marine Kid was promoted for sale by Japanese program seller K. Fujita, who in turn attracted the attention of producer Stanley R. Jaffe representing U.S. distributor Seven Arts Television, which later merged into Warner Bros./Seven Arts. Jaffe expressed interest in re-packaging the existing series and expanding it with newly animated episodes for the English-speaking market, with two provisions. First, the series needed to run for 78 episodes to ensure the program had substantial shelf-life and value for money for stations buying it. Second, it was stipulated that the Japanese-language version could not be aired in Japan before the English-language version had aired first-run in the U.S. and sold to international broadcasters. With the deal agreed to, Terebi Doga launched production again. As per the terms of the agreement, Marine Boy was first run as a syndicated program throughout the U.S. and in international markets from late 1967 onwards. The Japanese version of the series was eventually sold to Fuji TV.' -Wikipedia

So in the end, is the 1969 version, the one that proved successful and broke into the US market in Dub.

20 The Wonderful World of Puss 'N Boots

The Wonderful World of Puss 'N Boots

"Nagagutsu o Haita Neko, literally "Cat Who Wore Cavalier Boots", is a 1969 Japanese traditional animation action-comedy musical feature film, the 15th cinema feature produced by Tōei Animation (then Tōei Dōga). Is based on the European literary fairy tale of the same name by Charles Perrault, expanded with elements of Alexandre Dumas-esque swashbuckling adventure and funny animal slapstick, with many other anthropomorphic animals.

The film is particularly notable for giving Toei Animation its mascot and logo and for its roll call of top key animators of the time: Yasuo ŌtsukaReiko Okuyama, Sadao Kikuchi, Yōichi Kotabe, Akemi Ōta, Hayao Miyazaki and Akira Daikubara, supervised by animation director Yasuji Mori and given a relatively free rein and adequate support to create virtuosic and distinctive sequences, making it a key example of the Japanese model of division of labour in animation by which animators are assigned by scene rather than character. Most famous of these sequences is a chase across castle parapets animated in alternating cuts by Ōtsuka and Miyazaki which would serve as the model for similar sequences in such later films as Miyazaki's feature-directing début The Castle of Cagliostro and The Cat Returns.

Since becoming Toei Animation's mascot, Pero's face can be seen on the company logo at the beginning or ending to some of Toei's other animated features, both from Japan and some of their outsourced work for other companies.

The film placed 58th in a list of the 150 best-animated films and series of all time compiled by Tokyo's Laputa Animation Festival from an international survey of animation staff and critics in 2003.

A 1998 re-release of the film earned a distribution income of ¥200 million ($1.81 million) at the Japanese box office." -Wikipedia

"Puss in Boots is definitely meant for children, and definitely shows its age. The story is fairly typical of children's stories: defeat evil bad guy, win the girl (that you barely know), and mix it all together with some comic relief. For the most part, Puss in Boots seems mostly like a reverse Cinderella, with Pierre being the poor pauper who wants to wed with royalty. It, like Cinderella, also have some fairly unrealistic tendencies towards love, such as falling in love with someone right away...

Though this movie definitely wasn't aimed at my age group, I can still identify that this would be a great movie for the kiddies. The story will be simple enough (but still engaging) so children will stay entertained, and has enough comic interjection to make them not bored." -sothis

21 Judo Boy

Judo Boy

One of The First Martial-Arts Anime Series. Sasuke is the first on the list, but I could never find any information about it, nor see any episodes.

'Judo Boy, also known as Kurenai Sanshirō ('Scarlet Sanshiro'), is a Japanese anime television series created by Tatsuo Yoshida and directed by Ippei Kuri from Tatsunoko Productions.

The series stars a teenage martial artist named Sanshiro, trained in the Kurenai School of Jiujitsu and centers around his search for his father's killer. The only clue to his father's murderer is a glass eye left on the scene of the crime, suggesting that his father's murderer was one-eyed. Thus many of the villains Sanshiro fought during the course of the series were one-eyed or had one eye concealed with an eye-patch.

This show seems to have sacrificed movement in order to allow better, more detailed drawings.' -Wikipedia

22 Dororo

Dororo

The anime series bears the distinction of being the first entry in what is now known as the World Masterpiece Theater series.

It may also be one of the scariest anime shows of its time!

This is one of the few shows on the list that is aimed at older kids and adults rather than children, due to a more serious story, although they still try to add a fair amount of comedy.

'Dororo, is a Japanese manga series from creator Osamu Tezuka. During the late 1960s, manga featuring demons was popular among kids. Unlike the manga, the anime version has a conclusive ending. Tezuka's childhood memory of his friends pronouncing dorobō ('thief') as dororo inspired the title of this work. In the live action movie series, the name is explained to be a southern term for Hyakkimaru, meaning 'Little Monster'.

Dororo revolves around a rōnin named Hyakkimaru and young orphan thief named Dororo during the Sengoku period. The rōnin was born malformed, limbless and without facial features or internal organs. This was the result of his birth father daimyō Kagemitsu Daigō forging a pact with 48 sealed demons so that he might rule the land and increase its wealth and prosperity. In return, he promised the demons anything that they wanted which belonged to him. This enabled them to roam free and commit atrocities along the countryside. After his mother Oku was forced to set him adrift on the river, lest he be killed by his father, the infant was subsequently found and raised by Jukai-sensei, a medicine man who used healing magic and alchemical methods to give the child prostheses crafted from the remains of children who had died in the war. The boy became nearly invincible against any mortal blow as a result of the prostheses and healing magic.' -Wikipedia

This is one of the classic shows that is still worth watching, but recently it also received a worthy remake!

23 Ninpuu Kamui Gaiden

Ninpuu Kamui Gaiden

This is one of the few shows aimed at adults during this era. It belongs to the Gekiga genre, which is a Japanese term for comics that literally means 'dramatic pictures'. It describes comics aimed at adult audiences with a cinematic style and more mature themes, adopted by other more serious Japanese cartoonists, who did not want their trade to be known by the more common term manga or 'whimsical pictures'. It is akin to English speakers who prefer the term 'graphic novel', as opposed to 'comic book'. As such, the style is more mature and realistic, rather than the 'Astro Boy' look.

'Kamui is a manga series written and drawn by Sanpei Shirato. Set in feudal Japan, it tells the story of a low-born ninja who has fled his clan. The series combines historical adventure with social commentary and themes of oppression and rebellion that reflect Shirato's Marxist convictions.' -Wikipedia

24 Sora Tobu Yuureisen

Sora Tobu Yuureisen

'Also known as 'Flying Phantom Ship'.

This was one of the first anime films to be dubbed into Russian and shown in Soviet cinema theaters.

The animation and design work on the giant robot was done by the then-largely-unknown Hayao Miyazaki and the creator of the story was Shotaro Ishinomori, the same author of Cyborg 009.' -Wikipedia

25 Sazae-san

Sazae-san

This anime holds the Guinness World Record for the longest running animated television series and is still ongoing, making it one of the longest-running scripted TV series in history and the longest running animated show!

'Sazae-san is a Japanese yonkoma manga series written and illustrated by Machiko Hasegawa. The manga dealt with contemporary situations in Tokyo until Hasegawa retired and ended the series on February 21, 1974, but the anime is still ongoing. The end credits for each episode include brief animations of the original comic strips, with dialogue appearing in word balloons.

Despite the anime series being a hit, Hasegawa stated that she never wanted any merchandise to be made for it, including home video rights, making availability of past episodes, especially those prior to the introduction of the VCR, very rare. Following her death, her request to prohibit older episodes from being released in home media continues to be honored. As of November 2015, there have been 7332 episodes aired.

Plots:

In the beginning, Sazae was more interested in being with her horse than dressing up in kimono and makeup to attract her future husband. Hasegawa was forward-thinking in that, in her words, the Isono/Fuguta clan would embody the image of the modern Japanese family after World War II.

Sazae was a very 'liberated' woman, and many of the early plotlines revolved around Sazae bossing around her husband, to the consternation of her neighbors, who believed that a man should be the head of his household. Later, Sazae became a feminist and was involved in many comical situations regarding her affiliation with her local women's lib group.

Despite the topical nature of the series, the core of the stories revolved around the large family dynamic, and were presented in a lighthearted, easy fashion. In fact, the final comic, in 1974, revolved around Sazae's happiness that an egg she cracked for her husband's breakfast produced a double yolk, with Katsuo remarking about the happiness the 'little things' in life can bring.

As of now, the popular Sazae-san anime is frequently taken as nostalgia for traditional Japanese society, since it alludes to a simpler time before modern technology, despite the fact that it was leftist to the point of controversy when it originally ran in Japanese newspapers.' -Wikipedia

26 Attack No. 1

Attack No. 1

This series was practically responsible for the explosion of the shōjo subgenre from 1960s and on.

'Created by Chikako Urano. It also became the first televised female sports anime series in the shōjo category. Chikako was considered one of the founders of shōjo anime. And the series was introduced not only to push the older female manga fan base (as opposed to the significantly younger audience for magical girl series such as Sally, the Witch) into the anime mainstream, but also capitalizes on the boom of the gold medal Japanese women's volleyball team in the 1964 Olympics. The show did stand out in an era dominated by shōnen adventures and sci-fi anime, and was well received in the anime-friendly television markets of France (as 'Les Attaquantes'), Italy, (where it was originally retitled 'Quella magnifica dozzina' and later 'Mimì e la nazionale di pallavolo', where Kozue was renamed Mimì) and Germany (where it was retitled as 'Mila Superstar', where Kozue was renamed Mila). The name Mila came from the immensely popular Italian version of 1984's Attacker You!, in which the main character, You Hazuki, was renamed Mila. While not an official spinoff of Attack No. 1Attacker You! invited the inevitable comparisons with the earlier series, although the latter was heavier on comedic elements.

There were countless series that followed the same concept, but shifted the focus to different sports. Ace wo Nerae! for tennis, Yawara! A Fashionable Judo Girl for judo are just some examples of series that appeared in the decades after the fading of this series.

This show also had a profound impact not only for being a sport spirited (supokon) anime in Japan, but had a strong influence long after the series ended. Italian professional volleyball player, Francesca Piccinini, is one such example of someone inspired by the series.' -Wikipedia

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Halex May 26, 2019

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