Meet ‘Johnny Sokko and his Flying Robot’

Growing up enthralled by the anime mecha of Robotech and Voltron, I never suspected that a previous generation of TV nerds had been under the spell of the Japanese sci-fi masters — I was too busy envying my brothers the rich sci-fi they had available to them, like the original Star Trek and even some Doctor Who.

A coworker has been trying for months to get me to blog about Johnny Sokko and his Flying Robot, a Japanese series dubbed into English in the 1960s that she remembered fondly from her childhood. I had never heard of it until she introduced me. Though it’s taken me a while to embrace it, it’s wonderfully campy and horrendously violent at times — and not only do the characters run around with Western-style revolvers fighting monsters alongside a giant robot — the titular little boy of the series runs around shooting bad guys with his six-gun. For reals.

My coworker described the eponymous Giant Robot as a pharaoh-bot, but to me he looks more like a giganticized version of Twiki from the 1970s Buck Rogers TV show. Of course that’s backwards: maybe Twiki was inspired visually by the Giant Robot?

There is no official U.S. home release of Johnny Sokko currently in print, but there’s a ton of videos on YouTube (see “eye-opening” sample above) and legit downloads are available from iTunes, Amazon and Hulu.

What forgotten treasures do you want to share from the television vortex?

Follow Nerdvana on Facebook and Twitter.

Subscribe for free updates!


View previous campaigns.

Powered by MailChimp

Nerdvana Media will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide updates and marketing. Please let us know all the ways you would like to hear from us:

You can change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you receive from us, or by contacting us at We will treat your information with respect. For more information about our privacy practices please visit our website. By clicking below, you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

We use Mailchimp as our marketing platform. By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp's privacy practices here.