One of the lesser-known lights of the "anime boom" of the 1970s, SPECIAL SPACE ATTACK GROUP ZERO CHAMPION was a co-production of the animation company LACK STUDIO and an industrial combine, Greater Asian Prosperity Financial Group. Though this short-lived series was instantly dismissed as a simple Space Battleship Yamato rip-off, the show's more vocal critics found themselves subject to harrassment by the sound trucks of the producer's "silent partners", the Greater Osaka Legitimate Businessmen's Protective And Benevolent Association and Tattoo Enthusiasts Organization.

SPECIAL SPACE ATTACK GROUP ZERO CHAMPION is the story of Earth in the year 2288, when the future of humanity itself is threatened by the grotesquely alien Creamy Devil Empire, a ghostly pale race of devils from beyond the stars. Earth's last chance is the Zero Champion, a gigantic spaceship built from secret plans found buried somewhere in Manchuria. A special attack group of handpicked space fighters must journey to the mysterious planet Edao and find a new weapon that can defeat the Creamy Devils and save Earth.

The show itself lasted a mere 13 episodes and was only broadcast on a few stations. The producer, a former speechwriter and Imperial Navy researcher, had originally planned on a 52-episode series to be followed by eight films and three other TV series, but poor ratings and a complete lack of interest from toy companies and other potential licencees forced his backers to end their involvement much earlier than planned. Nothing more was heard from the producer until his body was found in the trunk of a car in Tokyo Bay some months later.

All contents copyright © 2005-2014 Shaindle Minuk & David R. Merrill.

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