Robot Land

This is the sixth episode in the 80's series and was first broadcast in Japan on November 5, 1980.

Robot Land is a fantasy park. It’s a place every kid dreams of visiting. One day a robot swan flew away from the part and came right to my house. The swan turned out to be a beautiful girl in disguise and a Devil King came after her to take her back. Robot Land is beautiful but when I went to rescue the girl I found it was full of dangers.

Plot

Odette under her swan form
Devil King and professor Hyde

A swan flies towards Astro‘s home and crashes outside of the front door. Astro and his parents take him inside and realize that the swan is actually a robot. As the midnight bell rings, the swan transforms himself into a beautiful young woman. She presents herself as Princess Odette and starts crying as she explains that she escaped from Robot Land, which is a terrible place. At that moment, in the middle of a sudden thunderstorm, a giant robot appears at the top of a dragon. Through a sinister laughter, he orders Odette to go back with him. While Astro fights with him, the dragon takes Odette and flies away. The robot, called Devil King, hurts Astro and follows the dragon. The next day, Astro tries to convince Dr. Elefun that Robot Land is not a paradise. The island is owned by a former colleague of Dr. Elefun, Professor Hyde, and he decides to visit him.

Upon their arrival, Professor Hyde takes Astro and Dr. Elefun around the island. They enter a room where new robots are being built. They were made to be monsters on the park, but Professor Hyde insists that they are not scary enough. He makes one of the robots more ugly, to Astro’s dismay. Astro tries to convince all the robots to tell Dr. Elefun whether they are truly happy, but none of them replies. This infuriates Professor Hyde, who orders them to leave immediately.

As they are leaving, Astro notices a swan wearing a crown. He recognises Odette and asks her to speak to Dr. Elefun. However, as a swan, she is unable to do so. Professor Hyde asks them to leave again. A robot approaches, calling himself Prince Siegfried. He has barely enough time to let them know that Astro is right before Devil King appears and his dragon takes him away. Professor Hyde claims it is only an act, and Dr. Elefun and Astro must leave, having been unable to find any evidence supporting Odette’s claims.

That evening, Astro finds himself unable to sleep and decides to go back to Robot Land by himself. He immediately finds Odette, but is trapped and then attacked by Devil King. He fights successfully until falling short of energy.

The next day, as Daddy Walrus notices Astro’s absence, Dr. Elefun comes to explain he got a call from Professor Hyde accusing him of sending Astro to the island to turn his robots against him. They decide to go to Robot Land together. Having overheard the exchange, Astro’s classmates decide to go as well. On the island, Professor Hyde explains that since Astro broke the law by entering the island and causing damage, if he calls the police, Astro is to be destroyed and Dr. Elefun to lose his position as the minister of science.

Meanwhile, Astro’s classmates enter the island underwater to remain unnoticed. They discover a submarine cargo board full of missiles, and then witness robots building weapons. They manage to free Prince Siegfried. Outside, Dr. Elefun finds himself unable to destroy Astro and decides he would rather resign as the minister of science. As Professor Hyde is about to destroy Astro himself, the children get in front of Astro and tell what they saw. Led by Prince Siegfried, all the robots come to the rescue. Hyde calls for Devil King. Astro is given a new energy cassettes. He destroys Devil King’s dragon, then successfully beats Devil King, who is then completely destroyed in an explosion, under Astro’s sad eyes.

Trivia

  • Various parts of Tchaikovsy’s Swan Lake can be heard throughout the episode.
  • Night on a Bald Mountain plays each time Devil King appears.
  • Robot Land is very reminiscent of Disney Land. Tezuka himself was a big fan of Walt Disney.
  • Various well known characters can be seen on Robot Land. Peter Pan fights Captain Hook.
  • Snow White and the seven dwarfs can be seen as Astro and Elefun arrive on the island.
  • As Professor Hyde, Astro and Dr. Elefun enters in a castle, the queen from Snow White is about to ask the mirror “who is the most beautiful of all”, Hyde pushes her and asks the mirror who is the greatest robot engineer of them all, to which the mirror replies that he is the one.
  • The character replying in the mirror is very reminiscent of Dr. Zhar from Uran's Quest.
  • The “T” on Theodore’s sweater has vanished when Alvin pulls it before they leave for Robot Land.
  • In Astro’s house, and then at the end during his final battle against Astro, Devil King’s hair is black instead of brown for a few seconds.