Power Up!

Power Up! is the pilot episode of the 2003 series. It was first broadcast in Japan on April 7, 2003 (the same date as Astro‘s birth in the original manga).


The episode begins with Dr. O'Shay, trying to bring a humanoid child robot (known only as “Tobio”) to life. However, there is a lack of power, prevented him from completely charging Tobio, so O’Shay phones the nearby Magnamite Power Station, a power station whose generator is a giant spider-like robot named Magnamite. As a consequence, Magnamite has to stop providing power to the rest of the city and instead transfer all the power to the Ministry of Science, causing a mass blackout. Just when Tobio was almost charged, a wire broke. O’Shay’s colleagues all wanted to abandon the project but O’Shay refused, claiming they had already gone too far, and the project must be completed, and successfully pulling off a risky move that has him going and manually plugging in the wire. Thus, Tobio is charged (“revived”). O’Shay thinks that as this is Tobio’s “new life”, he should need a new name, eventually going with “Astro” after reading a label of the company that produced the charger. Afterwards, O’Shay convinced some scientists to come and see Astro, yet they all leave unimpressed, especially from the robot’s lack of functions (and weapons). However, unknown to the scientists, Astro is already learning rapidly. O’Shay’s assistant Yuko with a flamingo-like robot named Momo and tells him that he is late; therefore O’Shays leaves Astro alone with the robot Nora.

Astro refuses to listen to Nora’s mundane lessons, and leaves to explore the city. Meanwhile, in his office an angry Inspector Tawashi storms into the office, demanding an explanation to the mass blackout. At the power station, problems also arise, with some power going into Magnamite and not coming out. The robots at the station believe that Magnamite has a problem, and sends in the maintanance robots. However, Maganamite destroys the robots, and then also destroys the power station, and leaves.

Meanwhile, after news that Magnamite has gone rampant spreads throughout the city, both Tawashi and O’Shay attempt to stop it. O’Shay, after making an analysis, discover that Magnamite already has excess power. Meanwhile, the police (led by Tawashi) are also making since worse, as they are firing energy beams at Magnamite, which is absorbing the power. Astro, with his hearing, detects Magnamite and, despite his best efforts, cannot convince the police to stop firing. The then lifts Magnamite into the sky and out of harm’s way, when he realises that Magnamite is only going crazy because he has too much power. He tells Magnamite to give some power to him. With that, Astro lifts Magnamite back to the power station, and then Magnamite resumes providing power for Metro City. Astro leaves as the newly crowned hero of the city.

The episode ends with Dr Tenma (whose name was not mentioned then) saying “so we start again, my Tobio”.