Spider-Man (the Japanese incarnation)
Name: Yamashiro Takuya
Identity/Class: Human mutate
Occupation: Motor cross champion
Affiliations: Garia (last survivor of planet Spider, deceased)
Enemies: Professor Monster; the Iron Cross Army; Amazon, Boukunryu
Known Relatives: Professor Yamashiro (father, deceased), Takuji (brother), Shinko (sister)
Base of Operations: Japan
First Appearance: Spider-Man (Japanese live-action TV show made by Toei Company, 1978)
Powers/Abilities: The bracelet worn by Yamashiro gives him the powers of a spider by injecting him with "spider extract." It contains his costume until needed, and is also capable of dispensing webbing. It can call Garia's alien space ship, the Marveller, to him. When the Marveller is linked to Yamashiro's flying race car, the Spider Machine GP-7, it transforms into a giant robot, known as Leopardon.
History: Yamashiro Takuya followed a series of visions he was having to discover his scientist father about to die next to a crashed alien spaceship. Investigating further, he found the craft's inhabitant, Garia, inside. Garia was the last survivor of the planet Spider, which had been devastated by the evil Professor Monster and his Iron Cross Army. With his dying breath Garia gave Yamashiro his bracelet. The youth swiftly discovered that the jewellary gave him special powers, which proved just as well, as Professor Monster and his minions also wished to possess it and weren't ready to take "no" for an answer. Yamashiro became Spider-Man, a costumed hero.
Comments: Having licensed the rights to use Spider-Man for a Japanese TV show, Toei put that unique Japanese spin on it to produce something quite unlike the source material. In fact, if it wasn't for the costume and the webbing, this would be completely unrecognisable.
Spider-Man has the historic distinction of being the first Japanese show to feature the idea of the hero battling a normal sized foe, then facing them a second time using his giant robot, Leopardon (after the monsters have grown in size).
Thanks to Dan Ramon P. Geromo for providing information and images on this character.
Kelvin Green notes "Spider-Man's enemy in this series, Professor Monster, looks uncannily like Doctor Doom. It's hard to tell if this was deliberate, but it's likely, since both are Marvel characters."
CLARIFICATIONS: Not to be confused with
Spider-Man, Peter Parker, Marvel's most famous superhero
Spider-Man, Ben Reilly, the above's clone
Spider-Man, Hans Jansen, Dutch superhero
Spider-Man, Pavitr Prabhakar, Indian hero
Any Additions/Corrections? Please let me know.
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