Battle of the Planets Logo

“G-Force! Princess, Tiny, Keyop, Mark, Jason. And watching over them from Centre Neptune, their computerised co-ordinator, 7-Zark-7. Watching, warning against surprise attacks by alien galaxies beyond space! Fearless young orphans, protecting Earth's entire galaxy! Always five, acting as one! Dedicated! Inseparable! Invincible!”

‘Battle of the Planet’s follows the adventures of a team of super-powered orphans code-named G-Force: Mark, the fearless, level-headed (and slightly chauvinist) leader; Jason, the rebellious and hot-headed second-in-command; the compassionate and caring Princess, who also provides some love interest for Mark; Keyop, a brave young lad with an annoying speech impediment, who was manufactured in a Cerebonic lab from a single cell; and Tiny, the overweight pilot of their spaceship, The Phoenix. Based in the underwater base of Centre Neptune, and under instructions from their boss, Chief Anderson, our heroes protected Earth from the threat of alien attack – particularly from assault forces from the planet Spectra, under the command of the villainous Zoltar…

‘Battle of the Planets’ originally started life in 1972 as a Japanese cartoon called ‘Gatchman’; this ground-breaking slice of anime was extremely popular with its audience, with its all-out action, grim and gritty storylines, and excessive violence and swearing. Then, in the late 1970s, the series was purchased by Sandy Frank Productions in America, who re-wrote, re-edited and re-voiced the episodes to create a whole new show. Whilst the basic premise stayed the same, our five fearless young heroes were now aided by 7-Zark-7, a squat robot who bore an uncanny resemblance to R2-R2, and who was so camp that he made Charles Hawtrey look like Charles Bronson. From his base in Centre Neptune, Zark, and his robot sidekick 1-Rover-1, would give G-Force updates on their missions, and also narrate what was happening to the audience at home, cheerfully reassuring children across the world not to worry about those planes that Spectra just blew up, as they were actually piloted by robots; that the city that was just utterly smashed to pieces by a giant mecha had only just been evacuated; and that the Spectra baddies who had just had their throats cut open by Mark’s throw-dart were merely sleeping from the effects of his ‘sonic boomerang. Yes, kids, in the world of ‘Battle of the Planets’, hardly anyone died - either that, or Zark had the worst case of denial ever! Thank goodness that in ‘BOTP’ Zoltar was always a diabolical male mastermind, rather than an hermaphrodite like his counterpart Berg Katse / Maya – otherwise that really would have fried Zark’s solenoids!

Each episode provided viewers with everything they could want from a great show: after the rousing, dramatic opening theme tune and accompanying voice-over, the forces of Spectra would launch a deadly assault on our planet using a huge spaceship, or giant, destructive mecha-machine (which would invariably be disguised as a gigantic version of an animal from our world – such as a terrapin, a sea anemone, a crab, a millipede or even a huge grasshopper), and then our heroes would “transmute” into their respective, bird-themed costumes, and then go off to fight the good fight. Sometimes we had a cool sequence of the various G-Force members’ vehicles transforming and then uniting with The Phoenix; sometimes G-Force would fly off into space (usually to pad out the episode after all the violence had been removed); the team might transform into a whirlwind pyramid to throw off attacking Spectra agents; Princess would give a flash of her knickers as she did a summersault; and if the team got into trouble, The Phoenix would have to transform into the impressive ‘Fiery Phoenix’ to give them the power to escape. All great stuff!

Battle of the Planets - Season 1

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Legal Bit: 'Battle of the Planets' is a Registered Trademark of Sandy Frank Productions. The 'Battle of the Planets' logo and all images from the television series are copyright Sandy Frank Productions unless otherwise stated; music is copyright the original composers and producers; no copyright infringement is intended. All specially created images and text are copyright © Clive Banks; please do not use these without my permission. All rights reserved. No profit is made from this website, and any revenue made from using the banner-links featured goes straight back into the costs of maintaining it, which comes out of my own pocket in the first place. No profit advertising is accepted. This website was created purely to entertain and amuse, and any references to persons living, dead, undead, comatose, in suspended animation, not born yet, or a figment of someone's imagination is purely coincidental. All opinions expressed are my own, so there...

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