The 8th Man
new! - here's a video of the opening to the American version of 8th Man, aka Tobor.
The 8th Man (aka 8 Man or Eighth Man) was a Japanese animated series produced in that country from 1963-64, and
syndicated the next year to the United States. Like many Japanese TV shows and movies, it was based on a comic book ('manga') story.
8 Man was published within Weekly Shonen (a phonebook-sized, weekly boys' comic magazine) from 1963 to 1966.
Police detective Yokoda is brutally murdered, and most of his body is resurrected into a cyborg by a Professor Genius; the resulting
crimefighting machine is called Tobor, the 8th Man (presumably models 1 thru 7 didn't 'take'). In his new semi-robotic body he has
enhanced strength and speed, and can alter his form to resemble others. 8 Man continues to help his city's
police department fight crime, and they - along with the Professor - are the only ones who know the secret of his creation. No superhero
is any good without some decent nemeses, and 8 Man's included the mob organization called Intercrime and such baddies as Dr. Demon
and The Armored Man.
If parts of 8 Man's origin sound familiar, it's because some of it was used in the storyline of the American 80's sci-fi actioner
Robocop, starring Peter Weller. In 1992, a live-action 8 Man movie was produced, and the next year, a new TV series
called 8 Man After appeared. Both were 'updated' versions of the original character for modern audiences - i.e., attempted to
be grittier, more emotionally overwrought, etc.