While the 1963 animated adaptation of Osamu Tezuka’s Tetsuwan Atom was a worldwide hit, far fewer people have heard of this live-action version that debuted four years earlier. Like many of the early Japanese superhero shows from this era, American movie serials from the Saturday matinee era are a clear source of inspiration, albeit with a uniquely Japanese flavor.
Putting out a release that goes back this many years reminds me of a blog that I’ve been meaning to recommend. Galactic Journey is a time warping newsletter written from the perspective of science fiction fans 55 years in the past. It features articles and reviews about then-contemporary SF literature and media, conventions, the space race, and various other topics related to the news and culture of the day. It’s almost like finding a collection of 55 year old fanzine articles preserved in a digital time capsule.
While the live-action version of Atom was completely unknown to the Western world 55 years ago, the animated version would have debuted the previous year (1963), and you can read Galactic Journey’s review of that here.