The Rise of Pluto

The Rise of Pluto is the 13th episode of Astro Boy. It is the first of the two Pluto episodes, directly followed by The Fall of Acheron. These episodes are, in fact, a remake of the ‘The Greatest Robot in the World’ story arc from the 1980s series, which are in turn a remake of the original manga’s volume 3. Additionally, although Zoran appears in these two episodes, she is not supposed to, caused by an oversight while the dub was re-ordered.


Dr. Tenma states, inside his desolate building, that he is sure that someday robots would rule humankind, and ultimately the world. He continues to state that when that time finally comes, Astro would then lead them. He then warns Astro that he should be ready for that responsibility, as if he isn’t (Tenma then activates Pluto) that someone else would do it for him. The scene than shifts to Dr. O’Shay’s house, where Astro, Zoran*, O’Shay and Nora are watching a Rocket Ball match. Harley shoots but is blocked by Pluto, who has just arrived in the stadium, and challenges the robot superstar. No matter how hard Harley tries, he couldn’t score past Pluto, who eventually damages him.

Shadow appears on the big screen, even though Astro knows the voice is Tenma’s. He announces that Pluto wants to ‘prove himself’ against the World’s Strongest Robots, starting with the Robot Squad (and Delta), before moving onto Hercules, and then Epsilon, and finally Astro. Delta confronts Pluto in an abandoned warehouse, but the victor is Pluto, who announces ‘two down, three to go’.

Epsilon, the Australian environmentalist
At the robot gladiator ring, Hercules easily defeats his opponent single-handed, but is unfortunately confronted by Pluto. The scene shifts to Epsilon, the only female contender who predicts a tornado and then stops it. Dr. O’Shay, however, is reluctant to let Astro fight. Later, at night, O’Shay is driving along the road in his hovercar when he is stopped by Tenma. He tells O’Shay that meeting Pluto is the next stage in Astro’s ‘evolution’, but O’Shay could ask more, Tenma flies away on his robot dog. Upon arriving home, Astro announces to O’Shay that he has decided to take on Pluto, but O’Shay rebuts. He grumpily states that robots shouldn’t be fighting each other. Hercules, meanwhile, overpowers Pluto, and yet Pluto detects a fatal flaw in Hercules’ programming and soon it is reversed. Pluto ends by saying ‘three down, two to go’.

Astro and Pluto meet in mid-air and prepares to fight, and yet Pluto is too badly injured from his fight with Hercules, and crashes to the ground. Astro repairs his wires and saves Pluto, commenting that they are both robots, but Pluto tells Astro that he was built for battle - and only that. The police arrive, and Pluto tells Astro that they will settle this some other time, and flies away. Zoran and Nora evade the news reporters outside their house and go to the park, where Pluto arrives. He begs a confused Zoran to allow him to talk to Astro, but Grudon arrives, a greedy television reporter who wants to get ratings but letting Pluto to fight his robots, and yet Pluto destroys them all too easily. Pluto than starts on Grudon, and attacks his hover-ship - and a fragment falls down on Zoran, but Pluto saves her. Astro arrives, and warns Pluto to get away from his sister. One of the lasers on one of Grudon’s robots fire at Zoran, however, and Pluto fires back, disarming it, but from Astro’s point of view it seems as if Pluto was trying to hit Zoran. The episode ends with Astro and Pluto both opening fire.

This episode is directly continued in The Fall of Acheron.

* = Zoran was not intended to appear in this episode, as, according to the timeline, she should not have been built yet. See above for details. Similarly, Delta is not meant to appear here, either.