Time Bokan

Time Bokan
Time Fighters (Time Bokan)
TV anime
Directed by Hiroshi Sasagawa
Studio Tatsunoko Productions
Network Fuji TV
Original run October 4, 1975December 25, 1976[1]
Episodes 61.[2]
Original video animation
Time Bokan: Royal Revival
Episodes 2
Anime and Manga Portal

Time Fighters (Time Bokan or タイムボカン?) is a Japanese anime series first aired on Fuji TV from October 4, 1975 to December 25, 1976 throughout Japan every Saturday at 6:30pm, with a total of 61 30-minute episodes. It was produced by Tatsunoko Productions, who later produced a number of spinoff programs as part of the "Time Bokan Series":The main popularity of the main franchise is the villains because of their comic relief.



Dr. Kieda, a somewhat wacky but intelligent scientist, has finally succeeded in inventing insect-shaped all-terrain time machines called "Time Bokan". To prove its efficiency and safety, he decides to serve as the very first guinea-pig for its maiden voyage. However, by the time the machine returned, he isn't anywhere inside. The only thing that returned with it is a talking parrot, along with a large gemstone called the Dynamond (ダイナモンド?), which is seemingly the most powerful and valuable jewel in the world.

Now it is up to a search party, founded by Dr. Kieda's lab assistant Tanpei, to travel though time to find Dr. Kieda; but it seems that someone power hungry is looking for the "Dynamond".[1]


The story starred two vividly opposing sides, the heroes, and the villains. Typical plots follow this format:

  • The heroes travel to a particular era or space during their search for Dr. Kieda, and their hunt for the nature of the Dynamond, meeting the famous historical figures (and some times fictional characters) in the process.
  • The heroes eventually encounter the villains.
  • The two sides battle each other with their time machines.
  • The villains always suffer a crushing defeat, either due to the smart foiling of their plans from the heroes, or due to the villains' own ineptitude.



Jett/Tanpei (丹平?): (Voiced by Yoshiko Ota) The loyal lab assistant of Dr. Kieta, a smart and sporty boy at the age of 13. He is warm, pure, and courageous, also he is a genius at mechanics. He is often seen sparring with Starr, his fellow assistant and Dr Kieta's granddaughter, comforting and encouraging her, and has been depicted as having a crush on her for more than once. Everybody in the team calls him "Tanpei-chan". Not much of his family and school background is given.

Starr/Junko (淳子?): (Voiced by Keiko Yokozawa in eps. 34~36, and Mori Okamoto in all other episodes) Dr. Kieta's 10-year-old granddaughter, gentle and resourceful young girl who is always lending a helping hand to others. She is gentle, caring, erudite and resourceful. She misses her grandfather dearly, thus earning a lot of sympathy from the rest of the team as they search for him. She might seem a little cry-babyish at the first glance, but vows to become stronger under the influence of Tanpei, who she has a crush on.

Tonk/C-robot (チョロ坊 Chorobou?): (Voiced by Reiko Katsura) A robot sidekick created by Jett, it can appear pretty childish in both appearance and actions, but it is not always a hindrance. Its power source is the winding key protruding from its back. Its features include also a flamethrower built into its nose, extendable limbs, and an ability to shock others with a significant amount of voltage output. (Although a robot, it is seen briefly eating cream puffs in the second episode.)

Dr. Kieta (木江田博士 Kieta-hakase?): (Voiced by Ryūji Saikachi) Starr's grandfather and creator of the "Time Bokan" time machines. A famous scientist, he wasn't recovered until the 27th episode, but soon joined Tanpei's team on other journeys.

Squarky/Perasuke (ペラ助?): (Voiced by Junpei Takiguchi) A talking parrot who seems to be the only source of information about Dr. Kieta's location when he was lost in time, but he always made random testimonies on that. The only thing he fears is probably his wife, Otake. It turns out that he accidentally triggered the time machine while Dr Kieta was absent in a particular age (which turned out to be the present days), and returned to the lab with it. After the journeys he took with the heroes, he reunited with his wife in the finale. His voice can be heard in the previews of upcoming episodes at the end of each episode before the ending theme. His name is a pun on his species.

Otake-san (オタケさん?): (Voiced by Haru Endou) A bossy and impatient female parrot of Squarky's kind and his wife. She is depicted with a distinct air of vanity and a body frame much larger than Perasuke's. She is also frequently kicking Squarky about, despite her love for him. At the beginning of the series, she and Dr Kieta are frequently soothing each other's eagerness of reunion.[3]


Commonly known as the "Time Skeletons" ("タイム ガイコツ") through the show, the three villains portrayed in this show were even more familiar to the audience than the heroes, mainly due to their renowned stupidity shown by the inevitable fate of always suffering a crushing defeat in each episode.

Lucinda Skulduggery/Majo (マージョ?): (Voiced by Noriko Ohara) Majo, 30 years old is the attractive blonde female leader of the trio. Her character was written after the "vain villainess" stereotype, and accordingly, she often acts and speaks as if she were the most beautiful and intelligent character in the series. Of the trio, she is the most enthusiastic about capturing the "Dynamond", but ends up doing virtually nothing except bossing her two henchmen around, invariably cursing them after the "defeat" sequence in each episode as well as ending up naked through some misfortune. Her name is derived from the Japanese word "魔女" (majo), which means "witch".

Captain Arrow/Grocky (グロッキー?): (Voiced by Jouji Yanami) The "brain" henchman of Lucinda, aged 25. He used to work for Dr. Kieda under cover, therefore he's usually employed to build a new and different mecha in each episode to encounter the Time Bokan used by the heroes. He is cunning though quite prone to making silly mistakes on the machinery (most of which became the key issue of the villains' misfortune throughout the episodes). His name is derived from the Japanicized word for "grotesque".

Mungo/Warusa (ワルサー?): (Voiced by Kazuya Tatekabe) The "muscle" henchman of Lucinda aged 35. He is seemingly less intelligent and more clumsy than the other two of the trio, and is often seen controlling the weaponry devices of their mecha. He is heard speaking in an accent known as Kansai-ben and frequently ends his sentences with the phrase "~man-nen" (~まんねん?). His name is a play on the Japanese term "悪さ" (warusa), which means "evil behavior" or "level of evil".

Narrator: Kei Tomiyama His voice is mainly in charge of introducing the different eras/spaces the characters are travelling to, and sometimes it can also give a brief comment or overview on the episode, especially at the end.[4]

Time Bokan machines

Created by Dr. Kieda at the beginning of the series, there are a total of three machines. Each one is designed after a particular kind of insect, both appearance-wise and function-wise. Although the term "time" is the only term in their name to state their function, they are also capable of travelling between dimensions, including fictional and hypothetical ones. An example of the former is a dimension based on Grimm's fairytales while an example of the latter is one based on Easter Island.

Time Mechabuton ("タイムメカブトン", aka Time Bokan I): This blue machine, which resembles a Japanese rhinoceros beetle, is the Time Bokan used the most by the heroes. Its features include:

  • The machine's primary weapon, a rotary saw/digger fashioned like the beetle's large single horn.
  • Durable all-terrain tyres, enabling the machine to travel to a maximum of 200 km/h (approx. 125 MPH).
  • Wings which will open just like the actual insect's to allow flight when powered by its jet engines. They can also be used to flap to create sandstorm by flapping.
  • A defensive missile launcher mounted in the bow.
  • A small red dome on its back; it is a manually pilotable scouting/surveillance airship named the "Ladybug-Drone" (テントウキ Tentōki?), which can either operate on its own, or to simply serve as a lookout post of the main machine. It includes a series of wacky gadgets and tools including mechanical limbs, shears, fire extinguishers, reflectors, nets, slingshots, and others.
  • A small submarine called the "Strider-Marine" (ヤゴマリン Yagomarin?) hidden in its belly.
  • A remote control of the whole system incorporated in the watch of Dr. Kieda.

Time Dotabattan ("タイムドタバッタン", aka Time Bokan II): This green, locust-shaped Time Bokan was actually captured by Dr. Kieda in the 27th episode from a species known as "Insect People", the seemingly futuristic dominant species of Earth. It is modified later in the series to increase its functions and transport capacity. Its features include:

  • The machine's primary weapon, a projectile launcher mounted in the bow of the machine.
  • Strong mechanical limbs just like the actual insect's, allowing the machine to jump over great distances. Once damaged, their functions can be replaced by a set of retractable caterpillar tracks hidden in the machine's belly.
  • A pair of small rudders that allows the machine to fly when powered by its jet engines.
  • A worm-shaped scouting/surveillance unit called the "Inchworm-Drone" (シャクトリン Jakutorin?), which can operate on its own to complete maintenance work such as repairing the machines. The heroes have often used it to sneak behind the villains' mecha and cause havoc on more than one occasion.
  • A small helicopter, called the "Firefly-Copter" (ヘリボタル Heribotaru?) hidden inside.[5]

Time Kuwagattan ("タイムクワガッタン", aka Time Bokan III): This red, stag beetle-shaped Time Bokan was created later by Dr. Kieda after he was found. Its features include:

  • The machine's primary weapon, a cutter/digger fashioned like the beetle's horns.
  • Limbs that can become wheels.
  • The machine's carapace, also fashioned like the actual beetle's, will open up like the rotor of a helicopter, to allow the machine to fly.
  • A bee-shaped scouting/surveillance airship called the "Honeybee-Drone" (ビーチクリン Biichikurin?).
  • A small, woodlice-shaped all-terrain vehicle, called the "Armadillo-Rollin'" (ダンゴロリン Dangororin?) hidden inside.[6]

Note: Although written in katakana, "Bokan" can mean "carrier" (such as an "aircraft carrier") if written in hiragana or kanji, as each the main machines carries a few smaller mechas with them all the time.

Villains' machines

Only one recurring mecha has ever appeared in the villain trio's garage: the "Time Skull"("タイムガイコッツ"), a small, skull-shaped time machine built by Grocky.

In order to match the "time bokan" in strength and maneuverability, this mecha is often linked to a larger mechanical structure, of which it serves as the head. This construction often results in various animal-shaped mechas as large as (or even larger than) the Time Bokan. These machines are often equipped with an abundance of concealed gadgets and weapons, most of which are capable of leaving the heroes' machines severely damaged.

Two running gags exist for the villains' mecha in the show. The first is that: after the mechas' departure in a large bang, a few stray parts can always be seen on the floor when the explosion clears. (In the first few episodes of the show, the director used the same group of pictures, which depicted exactly same stray parts to emphasize this gag.) Secondly, the villains rarely had a smooth landing in their arrival, always ending either in awkward poses or locations.

The most important feature of these mecha is a deadly device which the villains wish to finish the heroes off for good, and has been dubbed as "Highlight of the Week" ("今週のハイライト") by the villains (It is usually in the shape of a bomb launched in various crazy fashions). However, the triggering of such device often backfires onto the villains themselves either by silly mistakes in mechanical design or the foiling of the heroes, causing the whole structure to explode spectacularly, only leaving the Time Skull fully intact and the villains very tattered (Grocky, unfornately, is victimized every time by his female boss for the failure).


(Number. JP Kana Title JP Romaji Title JP English Translation Title)
1. 発進! タイムボカンだペッチャ Hasshin! Time Bokan da petcha Launch! Time Bokan
2. ギリシャのズッコケ戦争だペッチャ Girisha no zukkoke sensō da petcha A Zukkoke war in Greece
3. 恐怖の魔女狩りだペッチャ Kyōfu no majo kari da petcha Witch hunt for terror
4 へんてこ西遊記だペッチャ Henteko Saiyūki da petcha A geeky Saiyuki
5 原始人はやさしいペッチャ Genshi-jin wa yasashii petcha Primitive people are friendly
6 海賊はオウムが好きだペッチャ Kaizoku wa oumu ga suki da petcha Pirates like parrots
7 合図はひらけゴマだペッチャ Aizu wa hirake goma da petcha Til it signaled Hirake
8 大登場! ジンギスカンだペッチャ Dai tōjō! Jingisukanda petcha Great appearance! Genghis Khan
9 西部の大決闘だペッチャ
10 かっこいい忍者だペッチャ
11 インカの宝みつけたペッチャ
12 モナリザの秘密だペッチャ
13 大沈没! アトランティスだペッチャ
14 ドラキュラが出たペッチャ
15 打ち出の小づちを振るペッチャ
16 ズッコケ! ライト兄弟だペッチャ
9 Seibu no dai kettōda petcha
10 Kakkoii ninjada petcha
11 Inka no takara mitsuketa petcha
12 Monariza no himitsuda petcha
13 Dai chinbotsu! Atorantisuda petcha
14 Dorakyura ga deta petcha
15 Uchidenokozuchi o furu petcha
16 Zukkoke! Raito kyōdaida petcha
Pedigree's western Petcha 9
Cool 10's ninja Petcha
11-Inca treasure found Petcha
Mona Lisa's secret Petcha 12
Sunken 13th! Atlantis's Petcha
Dracula comes Petcha 14
15 打Chi出No小Dzuchi shake Petcha
Zukkoke 16! Wright's Petcha
17 ドロロン! 五右衛門だペッチャ Dororon! Goemon Da petcha Dororon! Goemon
18 急げ! 白雪姫があぶないペッチャ
19 1000年後のロボット国だペッチャ
20 イワンはウソをいわないペッチャ
21 そこのけ! ドン・キホーテだペッチャ
22 ピノキオの大冒険だペッチャ
23 黄門さまはステキだペッチャ
24 牛若丸と弁慶の大決闘だペッチャ
25 出たぞ! ロビン・フッドだペッチャ
26 それ行けやれ行け宝島だペッチャ
27 木江田博士を発見だペッチャ
28 ジャックと豆の木大騒動だペッチャ
29 枯れ木に花を咲かせるペッチャ
30 赤頭巾ちゃん気をつけてだペッチャ
31 夢見るシンデレラ姫だペッチャ
32 未来の象さんを守ろうペッチャ
33 ビックリ! 天女は宇宙人だペッチャ
34 突撃! ヤマタのオロチだペッチャ
35 フランケン! がまんだペッチャ
36 未来はヒヒの国だペッチャ
37 王様は裸だペッチャ
38 桃太郎の鬼退治だペッチャ
39 ハメルンの笛吹きだペッチャ
40 鶴の恩返しだペッチャ
41 竜宮は最高だペッチャ
42 アパッチ谷の秘密だペッチャ
43 かぐや姫は美人だペッチャ
44 サルカニ合戦だペッチャ
45 ジキル博士の謎だペッチャ
46 マッチ売りの少女だペッチャ
47 アラジンと魔法のランプだペッチャ
48 足柄山の金太郎だペッチャ
49 海さち山さち仲直りだペッチャ
50 赤い靴は悲しいペッチャ
51 月の世界はステキだペッチャ
52 人魚姫を助けるペッチャ
53 透明人間はつらいよペッチャ
54 地底王国のナゾだペッチャ
55 ピラミッドをつくるペッチャ
56 イースター島の巨人騒動だペッチャ
57 ぶどう畑の宝だペッチャ
58 雀のお宿はどこだペッチャ
59 ぼくたちガリバーになったペッチャ
60 シンドバットのロマンだペッチャ
61 ダイナモンドを発見だペッチャ
18 Isoge! Shirayukihime ga abunai petcha
19 1000-Nen-go no robotto-kokuda petcha
20 Iwan wa uso o iwanai petcha
21 Sokonoke! Don kihōteda petcha
22 Pinokio no dai bōkenda petcha
23 Kōmon-sama wa sutekida petcha
24 Ushi waka maru to Benkei no dai kettōda petcha
25 Deta zo! Robin fuddoda petcha
26 Sore ike yare ike takarajimada petcha
27 Ki Eda hakase o hakkenda petcha
28 Jakku to mame no ki dai sōdōda petcha
29 Kareki ni hana o sakaseru petcha
30 Aka zukin-chan ki o tsuketeda petcha
31 Yumemiru shinderera himeda petcha
32 Mirai no zō-san o mamorou petcha
33 Bikkuri! Ten'nyo wa uchū-jinda petcha
34 Totsugeki! Yamata no orochida petcha
35 Furanken! Gamanda petcha
36 Mirai wa hihi no kunida petcha
37 Ōsama wa hadakada petcha
38 Momotarō no oni taijida petcha
39 Hamerun no Usui Kida petcha
40 Tsuru no ongaeshida petcha
41 Ryūgū wa saikōda petcha
42 Apatchi tani no himitsuda petcha
43 Kagu ya hime wa bijinda petcha
44 Sarukani kassenda petcha
45 Jikiru hakase no nazoda petcha
46 Matchi uri no shōjoda petcha
47 Arajin to mahō no ranpuda petcha
48-Soku Karayama no kintarōda petcha
49 Umi sa chi yama sa chi nakanaorida petcha
50 Akai kutsu wa kanashii petcha
51 Tsuki no sekai wa sutekida petcha
52-Nin-gyo hime o tasukeru petcha
53 Tōmei ningen wa tsurai yo petcha
54 Chitei ōkoku no nazoda petcha
55 Piramiddo o tsukuru petcha
56 Īsutā-tō no Kyojin sōdōda petcha
57 Budō hatake no takarada petcha
58 Suzume no o yado wa dokoda petcha
59 Boku-tachi garibā ni natta petcha
60 Shindobatto no romanda petcha
61 Dainamondo o hakkenda petcha
18 Hurry! Snow White is dangerous Petcha
19 years after the country's robot Petcha 1000
20 Ivan Petcha tell lies
Sokonoke 21! Don Quixote's Petcha
Pinocchio's Adventures Petcha 22
Petcha our 23's nice anal
Benkei Petcha large breed cows and 24 young round
25 each out! Robin Hood's Petcha
Treasure Island I go it goes Petcha 26 Yare
I found Dr. 木江 Petcha 27 fields
Mayhem's Petcha 28 Jack and the Beanstalk
29 dead trees in bloom Petcha
I take care Petcha Little Red Riding Hood 30
31 Princess Cinderella's dream Petcha
Protect the 32 elephants in the future Petcha
33 amazing! It is alien fairy Petcha
34 Charge! It's Yamata Orochi Petcha
35 Franken! I put Petcha
Country's future Petcha 36 baboons
37 king naked Petcha
Momotaro's extermination of the demon Petcha 38
39 Kida thin Petcha Hamerun
Grateful Crane's Petcha 40
41 is awesome Ryugu Petcha
Secrets of the Valley's 42 Apache Petcha
Kaguya Hime's beauty Petcha 43
I battle Sarukani Petcha 44
Dr. Jekyll mystery Petcha 45
46's girl selling matches Petcha
Aladdin's magic lamp 47 Petcha
Kintaro's 48 mountain Petcha Ashigara
It will immediately make up the ground Petcha sea 49
50 Red Shoes sad Petcha
51 months the world's nice Petcha
The Little Mermaid 52 Petcha help
53 Invisible Man Petcha it hard
Petcha mystery of the kingdom's 54 underground
Petcha make a pyramid 55
56 Easter Island's giant uproar Petcha
57 vineyards Petcha treasure
Oyado Petcha 58 Where's sparrow
Gulliver was 59 Petcha us
Roman's 60 Petcha Shindobatto
I found a 61 Dyna Mondo Petcha


Several of the historical-themed episodes were edited together and dubbed by Jim Terry Productions (of Force Five and Robby the Rascal fame) for the US home video market in 1984, under the name Timefighters.

Several of the fairytale-themed episodes were also edited together and dubbed by Jim Terry Productions for the US home video market in 1984, under the name Timefighters in the Land of Fantasy. [7]

Name changes:

  • Time Bokan/Time Fighters
  • Tanpei/Jett
  • Junko/Starr
  • C-robot/Tonk
  • Dr. Kieta/Professor Von Spock
  • Perasuke/Squarky
  • Otake/Bromhilder
  • Skull Trio/Skulduggery crew
  • Marjo/Lucinda Skulduggery
  • Grocky/Captain Arrow
  • Walsa/Mungo
  • Time Bokan/Time Fighters
  • Time Mechabuton - Time Bokan 1: Scorpion 2
  • Time Dotabattan - Time Bokan II: The Grasshopper ship (Referred to initially as the prototype time machine, only able to transport 1 passenger. Later refitted to carry a whole crew)
  • Time Kuwagattan - Time Bokan III: The Ant ship


  1. ^ a b "タイムボカン" (in Japanese). Tatsunoko Productions. http://www.tatsunoko.co.jp/works/timebokan/timebokan.html. Retrieved 2009-06-01. 
  2. ^ "Tatsunoko Pro" (in Japanese). Tatsunoko Productions. Archived from the original on 2008-06-12. http://web.archive.org/web/20080612200810/http://www.tatsunoko.co.jp/works/timebokan/list.html. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  3. ^ "Tatsunoko Pro" (in Japanese). Tatsunoko Productions. Archived from the original on 2008-06-12. http://web.archive.org/web/20080612201324/http://www.tatsunoko.co.jp/works/timebokan/chara.html. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  4. ^ "Tatsunoko Pro" (in Japanese). Tatsunoko Productions. Archived from the original on 2008-06-12. http://web.archive.org/web/20080612201324/http://www.tatsunoko.co.jp/works/timebokan/chara.html. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  5. ^ "Tatsunoko Pro" (in Japanese). Tatsunoko Productions. Archived from the original on 2008-06-12. http://web.archive.org/web/20080612201324/http://www.tatsunoko.co.jp/works/timebokan/chara.html. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  6. ^ "Tatsunoko Pro" (in Japanese). Tatsunoko Productions. Archived from the original on 2008-06-12. http://web.archive.org/web/20080612201324/http://www.tatsunoko.co.jp/works/timebokan/chara.html. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 
  7. ^ "Anime Bargain Bin Reviews - aka Time Fighter -aka Time Bokan". Anime Bargain Bin Reviews. http://www.anime-games.co.uk/VHS/anime/timefighters.php. Retrieved 2008-10-06. 

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