Live-action Version Of Astro Boy Atom


Although Astro Boy Atom/Tetsuwan (Iron Arm) Atom is well known for its anime products based on the manga authored by Osamu Tezuka, it is also know that the hero was also featured in a live-action TV series before being made into anime.

It seems that it aired from 1959 to 1960 (before I was born) with 65 episodes in total as the 58 of them are available on DVD, and, while I didn’t know this at all, Atom is likely to have been made into a paper puppet play and aired for half a year in 1957 with 25 episodes with the films not existing anymore unfortunately.


Atom in the live action is often made fun of by people because he looks quite funny by today’s standards as the character was acted by a kid actor (Masahito Segawa) wearing a plain costume and helmet.

As a person of my generation I remember we enjoyed watching the anime Tetsuwan Atom aired from 1963 through 1966 (with 193 episodes) with great popularity along with its impressive theme song I think I often heard sung among children back then.

Looks like Atom’s costume changed a couple of times during the series

It is said to have been the first genuinely home-made TV anime series of Japan, and it is known that a variety of TV anime shows started being produced one after another in the wake of the success of this first home-made anime show.

Moreover, with the emergence of Ultra Q in 1966, tokusatsu and anime plunged into fierce competition to win popularity from among children although it definitely gave the time of bliss to us kids!

It is fun to see him wear the costume with the stuff shaped like protectors we find in today’s heroes

4 thoughts on “Live-action Version Of Astro Boy Atom”

  1. Live-action Version Of Astro Boy Atom never aired in Thailand , But Animation Version has aired in thailand since 1965 and may be The first Japanese Animation series That has aired in Thailand. However, Some sources say that Shonen ninja Kazeno Fujimaru is The first Japanese Animation series That has aired in Thailand. ( Both series First broadcast in the same year, same Week ! )Atom and Fujimaru are The most Popular character for Thaiboy at that time.

    1. Wow, that’s great! I don’t think I watched Fujimaru so much but that makes me feel we have known each other for quite a long while since our childhood!
      Thanks for your comment with the wonderful pic!

  2. Wow, the first costume looks hilarious. The second is kinda cool, but it’s not Atom! There seems to be a clean split in depictions of Atom: there’s the ones who turn his hair into a 3d shape, striving for faithfulness to the original, and the ones who just draw him with normal hair that resembles the shape of the original. For example, mangaka Katsuhiro Otomo followes the former, while Naoki Urasawa the latter. This series opted for having the actor wear a helm, but I wonder if an eventual new live action Atom would instead depict him with actual hair. Nitpicky stuff, but character design is also about this!

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