Yatterman is the second show in the Time Bokan Anime series by Tatsunoko Productions (the unrelated Flint the Time Detective uses a similar concept). Running from 1977 to 1979, the series stars Gan-chan, the son of a toy designer, and Ai-chan, his girlfriend, fighting crime as "Yatterman", using inventions and riding on large robots constructed by Gan. Their most regular enemy is the Doronbo Gang (Skull Gang), consisting of Doronjo, Boyacky and Tonzler, who are out to collect Dokuro Stones (Skull Stones), for their boss, Dokurobei.
The show was hugely popular in its time, and fondly remembered by many Japanese adults today. Oddly enough, the key to its popularity wasn't the titular heroes, but rather the Terrible Trio they fought every week, who were hilarious rather than threatening, and ended up with many viewers rooting for them.
Received a remake series, New Yatterman,in 2008, and a live-action movie directed by Takashi Miike (yes, of Audition fame) in 2009. Yatterman-1, Doronjo and Yatterman-2 also make appearances as playable characters in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom.
Both the original series and New Yatterman are streaming on Anime Sols.
- Bittersweet Ending: the 70s series. When Doronjo and her lackeys discover that Dokurobei is the Dokuro Stone (see The Reveal below), they decide to leave their life of crimes, sadly greet each other one last time and take, literally, different paths. The director pans the image to show us that the three paths later will turn into one single road.
- Call Back: The final episode of the 2008 series uses the original 1977 opening.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: The 70's series didn't just get crap past the radar, it practically delivered a sledgehammer smash to the radar long before Ren and Stimpy got to break it.
- The 2008 remake actually lampshades this in the very first episode when Tonzra obscures Doronjo's exposed chest.
Boyacky: You know, if it was back then they would've just boldly shown it...
- Gosh Hornet: Both episode 7 and 33 of the original anime have the Doronbo trio getting attacked by bees. Once as a punishment and once because the episode's Dokuro Stone was actually a beehive.
- Love Dodecahedron: In the live-action film.
- MacGuffin: The Dokuro Stones, in almost every episode
- Nice Hat: Arguably, the hats Gan and Ai wear as their crime-fighting alter-egos.
- Once an Episode: the Doronbo Gang making some sort of scam to raise fund for their "evil" plans, Dokurobei's self-destructing messages (see below), the Yattermen needing to power up their mechas in the middle of the battle, the Doronbo Gang's mechas exploding in a skull-shaped atomic mushroom, and their escape on a triple bicycle, Dokurobei cruelly punishing them for their failure... The episodes pretty much followed all the same scheme. Oh, and Doronjo's Clothing Damage, which happens at least twice an episode.
- Rearrange the Song: Yatterman no Uta, the first OP theme for the show, would get rearranged quite a bit. There are six rearrangements in the 2008 series, a rearrangement in Tatsunoko VS Capcom, and in the The Movie. The song is just that famous, it will never leave!
- Sensible Heroes, Skimpy Villains
- Shout-Out: In episode 3 of the 2008 anime, Boyacky suggests to Doronjo and Tonzra that they all should watch "DeathNeet".
- Spell My Name with an "S": Depending on the source, it may be Yatterman or Yattaman, Tonzler or Tonzra, Boyacky or Boyakki, (or Boyacchi) Doronbo or Drombo (or Dorombo) and Doronjo or Dronio. Oh, and both Doronbo and Doronjo are different entities, with Doronbo being the organization and Doronjo being the villainess.
- According to Tatsunoko vs. Capcom, Yatterman, Boyacky, and Doronjo. The others are still open to interpretation.
- They Fight Crime
- 20% More Awesome: Ai does this all the time.
- X-Ray Sparks