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"SuperBook" More at IMDbPro »"Anime oyako gekijô" (original title)

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11 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

Fond memories

Author: (chrbubb@hotmail.com) from Saline, Michigan U.S.A.
20 May 2004

This was the show that started me on the road to becoming the otaku I am today. The Japanese anime artwork style of "Superbook" and its companion series, "The Flying House," immediately grabbed me because it was so different from the American animation I was used to watching. I wasn't aware until years after I first watched it that the show was Japanese in origin, or that it was created by one of Japan's most famous animation studios: Tatsunoko Production Co., Ltd., also known for "Speed Racer," "Samurai Pizza Cats" and "The Littl' Bits," among others.

The show is about two young children named Christopher (a.k.a. Sho in Japanese, Luis in Spanish) and Joy (Azusa in Japanese, Anita in Spanish) who are transported back in time by a magical talking Bible (the titular "Superbook") to witness the stories of Adam and Eve, Jonah, Noah's Ark, and other Biblical legends. Accompanying them is Chris's wind-up toy robot, Gizmo (Zenmaijikake), who is brought to life by Superbook. The Bible stories featured in this series were mostly from the Old Testament; "The Flying House," another series created by Tatsunoko, dubbed by CBN and featuring different lead characters but the same premise, handled the New Testament, including the life and teachings of Jesus. The animation style is extremely primitive by today's standards (it's 20+ years old, remember), and if you hate anime it won't convert you into an otaku. Nevertheless, the show has a cuteness and charm that is impossible to deny. Christian conservatives hated the show, claiming it would confuse and disappoint children who were disappointed not to find time-traveling children in the *real* Bible, but I found it very entertaining and educational and watched it regularly. Remember that the show was made in Japan, where there are few Christians, and was intended as an adaptation of stories from the best-selling book in the history of the world, not to proselytize or preach. It would be the same if Disney were to do an adaptation of a piece of Japanese literature such as the Tale of Genji - chances are they wouldn't get everything 100% accurate, but you'd be able to get the gist of the story, and that's what "Superbook" is all about. It's also worth noting that the series has a huge following among missionaries who have used it to help introduce the Christian faith to newcomers.

In the U.S. this series was aired on CBN's cable network (which later became The Family Channel and is now ABC Family, with almost entirely sectarian programming), which is where I watched it faithfully through the '80s. Nowadays it can be seen early Saturday mornings, along with "Flying House," on TBN (Trinity Broadcasting Network), and episodes are also available on video.

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9 out of 12 people found the following review useful:

The only Anime Video you'll find in my church library

10/10
Author: The_Light_Triton (Black_triton14@hotmail.com) from In a Chair in my room
14 October 2005

Anime. Such a popular form of entertainment. most of it involves young men or young women developing powers to fight evil, or maybe discovering someone who is fighting evil but needs help. or maybe it's about robots fighting each other.

Enter superbook, one of the first, and very few Christian Anime series.

Chris is a young boy with a strict father, who one day instructs him to clean out the attic after he gets home from school. His friend Joy joins him and in their work they discover a book that has been gathering dust for years. They soon discover the book can talk, and has the power to send them back to biblical times.

I had never seen many of the episodes back when I was a child but upon seeing this show again on youtube i'm on a personal quest to see every episode and possibly come back to re-review them all piece by piece.

I also mentioned in my old review how I could've imagined the story about Adam and Eve would've been made. (Turns out my suspicions about it were right, although Eve looks more like a Barbie with black hair)Regardless of the fact it shows boobs to children (yep, i said that) It's one of the best animated recreations of the Creation i've ever seen.

Bottom line, it is on DVD, and if you want to show your children a very, very good animated bible series, Get this DVD. Although watch it with them and explain everything detail for detail.

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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Awesome! Clean! ANIME!-May contain Spoilers- READ AT YOUR OWN RISK!

Author: keyblade1000
30 September 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I'm a big Anime fan and also a Christian so Superbook is a good one for me. I'm also a big fan of Tatsunoko Animation Studios, they did one of my absolute other favorite anime, such as Macross aka Robotech and Speed Racer. That's so cool, I liked the idea of a Christian oriented anime, it's just totally AWESOME! It has classic Japanese animation that reminds you of Speed Racer. I have only seen two episodes of this retro anime and I hope to find more of these on Video or HOPEFULLY DVD one day. If your a religious person who likes anime just like me, this one is for you! It's very hard to find a good anime that doesn't have SO much suggestive content nowadays. I just realized just a few years ago that this was an anime, I got SOOOO excited about it! I had this one VHS of Superbook for years and didn't know about it but when I first saw Superbook, it was 1993 or 1994 or something I didn't even know what anime was yet! It was Sailor Moon that introduced me to anime, which is my #1 favorite Anime of all time! I like the Japanese version the best even though there's some content in it that I don't agree with but The story and characters are just awesome. Anyway back to Superbook! This gives you an entertaining perspective of the BIBLE, an excellent tool for young children but remember a note to those very paranoid parents, please Read carefully: The series does NOT show the Bible stories with 100% Accuracy to the Real BIBLE but gives the kids the important morals of the stories and what's really important like for ex: God loves everybody, HE gave us his son Jesus so we can be with him, Christmas is about the birth of Christ, etc. I hope this was helpful to you! Like retro anime? Then check this one out please!

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

An Unforgettable Christian Animation Series

10/10
Author: RealChristian14 from United States
7 October 2015

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Superbook,also known in Japanese as Animated Parent and Child Theatre during its first season and as Personal Computer Travel Detective Team during its second season, is an animation series that provides stories from the Bible.Most of them are taken from the Old Testament.

The first season provides Superbook talking and bringing Christopher Peeper and Joy together with a wound-up toy robot named Gizmo back in time to witness and participate with minimal consequences to the Biblical stories such as Adam and Eve,Noah's Ark,David and Goliath,Jesus Christ,the Apostle Paul, and many others.Meanwhile,the second season provides the viewers with the story having Superbook getting accidentally linked into a personal computer and with the pet dog named Ruffles getting lost in the process.Biblical events happen as Uriah Peeper and a more sophisticated toy robot named Gizmo go back in time to search for Ruffles.

This is an excellent Christian animation series just like its companion series about the New Testament entitled The Flying House.The voice actors involved such as Peter Fernandez,Billie Lou Watt,Ray Owens,Hal Struder,George Gonneau and Helena Van Koert definitely did an excellent job in providing life to the main characters as well as the major characters from the Bible.Despite the fact that the writers employed creative license in the Biblical stories,it never altered the message that the Bible was trying to impart to the viewer.It was nice to see Chris and Joy learn many valuable lessons as they meet the characters from the Bible and become witnesses or somehow becoming unwilling participants in the stories that are unfolding.As for the second season,the stories are a lot better as more episodes were made about important Biblical characters in the New Testament such as Abraham,Moses,Joseph and King David as the unfolding plot of witnessing Uri and Gizmo provides humorous moments as they experience a lot of frustrations in trying to locate Gizmo and the joy that everyone experiences from Uri and Gizmo as well as Chris and Joy,both of whom remained in the present time, upon locating Ruffles.No wonder that this animation series remains being seen on the air in stations like Smile Of A Child TV after more than 30 years it was first shown.

No question that Superbook will continue to provide many generations Biblical stories with valuable lessons as well Christian entertainment for many years to come.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Underrated Cartoon

7/10
Author: JerRocksday from United States
5 July 2010

This was one of my cartoons that I've grown up with in my childhood. Being that it's anime, I believe it deserves more attention because it kinda paved the way for future anime titles. I'm not saying it's the first anime ever, but it's certainly had an influence on future anime titles such as people like Osamu Sekita, who'd later go on to work on Mobile Suit Gundam and Beyblade.

Season 1 starts out with Chris and Joy cleaning out the Professor's attic and discover Superbook. They take it to Chris' room to open it and then it comes to life and takes them on their first adventure, accompanied by their robot Gizmo.

My favorite episode of them all is the Apostle Paul, and a couple Jesus episodes.

Season 2 shows an older version of Chris and Joy, accompanied by Uriah (Chris' cousin). In the beginning of the season, Chris' Uncle leaves the gang with a life-size version of Gizmo. After he leaves, Chris + Joy and everyone were having lots of fun (I just quoted the lyrics to the theme song), until Joy accidentally bumps into Chris and Uri, causing Superbook to fall off the shelf and onto the computer, causing it to become Computerized. In the process, Chris' dog Ruffles is sucked into the computer, and it's up to the kids and Gizmo to find Ruffles. So Uri and Gizmo go after her, while Chris and Joy stay behind for a huge majority of the season, monitoring them. (I say majority because in episode 25 and 26, they're shown with Uri and Gizmo in the computerized Superbook.)

Overall, I've enjoyed the series and have had fond memories of the cartoon and have continued to watch it to this day. While the dubs were on and off(good or bad), it's what made the series enjoyable.

Now here's my complaint on the new CGI Superbook that's being developed.

After seeing the first episode, here's my personal list of problems: -In the original Superbook, Chris' dad (Fred) is a Professor of Archaelogoy. But in the new one, he's shown to be an tech. inventor and scientists. And the original Professor has said he'd rather be computer ignorant, 'than a slave to a machine.' -The names: Christopher's last name in the original is 'Peeper.' But in the new CGI Superbook, his last name is 'Quantim.' They even had the balls to change Joy's last name, and the Professor's name as a whole. -The Character designs: While I thought the drawings weren't too bad(because I've heard the character designer of TT/The Batman is the designer), I think they made sure they look nothing like the original characters. For instance, in the original Superbook, Joy's blonde. But in the new one, this 'Joy' is brown-haired. It's like they're trying to sabotage the art that Superbook was based on. -In the new CGI Superbook, when David is anointed with oil, light is shown emitting from all over his body, which we don't see in the Bible, nor in the original Superbook. And later we see 'Chris Quantim' emitting light. It's like they're trying to teach kids 'believe in God and you'll emit light.' :-/

This is just a few. So far, this CGI series isn't off to a good start. Which is the direct reason why I started creating my own series called, Trouble Shooters. That's a crossover spin off between Superbook and Flying, featuring the original Christopher Peeper, Joy, Gizmo, etc. I can't give away any plot details, nor put too much focus on that, because of this review. If you want to learn more about that, please email me.

Overall 7/10 Memorable, enjoyable and delightful series.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Superbook Is A Classic

10/10
Author: Marian20 from United States
25 May 2015

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Superbook is divided into two parts - Superbook I and II - and each of which consists of twenty-six episodes.In the first one,it provides us Christopher Peeper,Joy and Gizmo that went back in time to different stories of the Bible mostly from the Old Testament when they got introduced to Superbook.In the second one,it provides us with Chris' cousin,Uriah or Uri,who went back in time to search for Ruffles,who got lost when the dog accidentally got transported back in time after Superbook magically fell and got integrated into the Personal Computer.Gizmo joined Uri in his search.

Superbook I has Chris,Joy and Gizmo take part in the stories of the Bible,meet Biblical characters and learn numerous Christian values and lessons after each adventure they experience.Also,it was fun to see them witness how the relationship between the Israelites and God progressed from the beginning of time with Adam and Eve up to the time of Saint Paul.

I have mixed feelings with Superbook II.It was obvious that the criticisms the show received as to wanting the stories of the Bible to remain intact and the non-participation of the show's major characters like Chris and Joy.Also,the Biblical events unfold and we are sort of limited to seeing Uri and Gizmo to just searching for Ruffles rather than become witness to the events and learn valuable lessons from them.On the positive side,we get to see more episodes about King David,Moses,Jospeh and many judges from the Bible that were not featured in the first one.Evidently,there was an improvement story-wise.

The series as a whole provides the young viewers a great introduction to the Bible particularly the Old Testament.Also,it also teaches them Christian values and life lessons alike.Even adults who have seen them when they were young more than thirty years ago and those who didn't will enjoy them alike.No wonder it was a classic.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

A Timeless Old Testament Anime

10/10
Author: Desertman84 from United States
5 May 2013

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Superbook is an anime television series that chronicled the events of the Bible's Old and New Testaments in its 52 episode run. The first 26 episodes aired from 1981 to 1982. The series returned as Superbook II with 26 episodes to air in 1983.

The first series began at the home of a young boy named Christopher Peeper discovers the magical Bible that speaks and sends him, his friend Joy, and his toy robot Gizmo back in time to the early events of the Old Testament. Gizmo can walk and talk, but only for the duration of the adventure.In the second series Superbook II, the magical Bible fell onto a computer keyboard, giving anybody the ability to see into the past from Christopher's home via the monitor. Ruffles, Chris' dog, managed to get lost in time, prompting Gizmo and Chris' cousin Uriah to search for her. Chris and Joy kept watch and control of the computer from the present. The older children also had a hard time trying to keep what happened a secret from Chris's parents. Gizmo appears as a functioning robot in the present day rather than a toy in the second series, but still needed to be wound up on a regular basis. Gizmo also had a built in computer keyboard and monitor in his chest in order for Gizmo and Uri to stay in contact with Chris and Joy in the present day as well as transporting to other places in time or returning to the present.

The first series of Superbook featured chiefly stories from the Old Testament, although a few episodes dealt with the life and ministry of Jesus Christ and the finale episode was about the conversion of Paul. The episodes in the first series are chiefly one-shot stories, with no overarching "plot" aside from Chris and Joy learning life lessons from their travels. The episodes in Season Two focused solely on Old Testament stories the featured the stories of Abraham, Joseph and King David in more detail, while also covering some stories not included in the first series such as the fall of Sodom and Gomorrah.Also,it has an overarching plot concern was Uri and Gizmo's quest to find the missing Ruffles.

Just as Chris and Joy are transported back in time each episode, I too am taken back to my impressionable youth and realize that a lot of my Biblical framework as an adult was outlined by these very shows when I first saw them more than 30 years ago.This basically got me introduced to the scriptures when I was very young.Despite the fact that there's obviously a good bit of creative license taken especially with a few stories are a bit off in the details,but getting immersed into the Old Testament as a young kid is still a great thing. And this classic Christian anime still holds up to present due to its creativity in terms of biblical storytelling.And most of all,it has a lot of heart into it that even adults will surely enjoy.

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1 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

I'm surprised I didn't get nightmares watching this when I was a kid

1/10
Author: Angels_Review from United States
12 April 2015

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

So, let me touch on a few things before you read my review. I am pagan, but I grew up Lutheran Christian, reading the bible and watching shows like this (Heck, this is one of the shows I used to watch as a child). I still live with my family that is very Christian. I believe in some things about the bible and the good message that is supposed to be in it. That said, I will not be getting to into the differences between the bible and this show. This show was made for children, and no matter what anyone says, the bible is not a child friendly book. There are a lot of racist and sexist things in the bible that are no good for children cartoons.

Now pleasantries aside and I haven't scared you off with my fair warning about what you will find in this review, I say lets get on with it. There is really not much to explain about this show, it's just not that good. The whole concept of the show from what I gathered now that I'm older is to scare children into doing everything they are told to do. The very first episode pretty much starts out with Chris not wanting to clean the attic that his father told him to and then ends after Chris saw the first story, Adam and Eve, and then he says he will to everything that his father tells him to do. The problem with this is that the way the dialog is written, its very robotic and makes the characters not have that much personality to them.

So besides all the characters from the bible, we have Chris's Dad, who basically has the personality of an overbearing father, Chris, who basically has the personality of a fast talking little boy, and Joy, a sweet little girl who always ends up hanging around Chris. Then there is Gizmo…. Who pretty much acts like a little kid even younger then Chris or Joy. I think he is more of a annoyance then any sort of help to the children. These are pretty much everything about them. I know that the characters are supposed to have some personal growth going on but their personal growth just ends up being 'Oh, I did this in the beginning of the episode. Now I went and saw a story in the bible talking about the same thing I was annoyed about so I won't do what I did in the beginning anymore.' Rinse and repeat over the span of each episode. The personality of the bible characters are very one sided. They are either good or bad, and the conversations that they have just seem to come off like a creeper. Every time I hear them talk, the hair on the back of my neck stands on end and I get a chill down my back. How did I not get nightmares watching this? This artwork might be the reason why I am really into Japanese art now. The look is very Japanese anime from that time. The large eyes and the cute chibi style. When I was little, I had no clue that the super book was actual a Japanese anime itself, I always thought it was from America so it was surprising when I was looking up the info about it. I don't quite know if this was just from the quality of the show, or the quality of where I was watching it, but the show was very blurry. The backgrounds felt more like blobs of color and the characters seemed to meld into it making it hard to watch.

The opening song is… a product of the times I think. It has a bit of a jazzy sort of feel to it but doesn't really have anything to do with the actual show. It really dates this whole series and makes me sigh. The ending song is also very dated too. Both songs basically just try to push how 'super' this book is. This was a show I loved and now looking back at it, the voice acting and the music just feels like it was rushed or didn't have that much care put into it. The first episode, even the narrator sounds like he was rushed when you first get the introduction as to what is happening. The level of voice acting in this show is pretty on par with Speed Racer, except speed racer was enjoyable to a point. This is just sad. They do the lamest way possible to explain anything in the bible, and everything just has to be explained. I wonder again just how they caught my attention when I was young because right now, it's just boring.

This show used to be a show I watched when I was little. Now that I'm older, I can't believe I used to watch this! It has no personality and no soul to it. This has two seasons but I could barely get through the first 5 episodes. It has nothing to do with me being pagan and everything to do with how mind numbing this show is. It hurts watching it with just how little soul was in it.

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