Chōdenji Robo Combattler V

Chōdenji Robo Combattler V

From wikipedia:

Combattler V, full name Chōdenji Robo Combattler V (超電磁ロボ コン・バトラーV(ブイ), Chōdenji Robo Konbatorā Bui, lit. Super Electromagnetic Robot Combattler V), is a Japanese mecha anime television series produced by Toei Dōga and animated by Soeisha (later renamed as Nippon Sunrise) that aired from 1976 to 1977. It is the first part of the Robot Romance Trilogy of Super Robot series created by Saburo Yatsude and directed by Tadao Nagahama.

The robot's name is a portmanteau of "combine", "combat", and "battle", and the V is intended both as an abbreviation for "victory" and in reference to the five component machines that form the robot, as well as its five pilots. The V is pronounced as the letter V, unlike in the spiritual successor, Voltes V, where it is pronounced "five".

The show follows the adventures and battles of the Battle Team, a group of young pilots, as they battle against the Campbell Empire from outer space.

John's Notes: 

The Combattler V anime is really the progenitor of all other cartoons like Voltron (GoLion) where several vehicles, each with a separate purpose and pilot, combine in a series of escalations into a more powerful entity (note this is a bit different from the Getter Robo method of recombining three vehicles to create a robot with a specific job). The ultimate parody is Gotron Jerrysis Rickvangelion from Rick & Morty - awesome stuff!

Popy and Mattel

As with other popular anime and tokusatsu series, Popy and other manufacturers produced a plethora of toys related to Combattler V, eventually leading to a Mattel licensing deal as Shogun Warrior toys.

As implied above, Combattler V was the outcome of combining 5 separate vehicles, each piloted separately, into a single human-shaped giant robot with enhanced abilities. As with pretty much all things Japanese, this idea bled into toys and merchandising with each of the vehicles released by Popy and later licensed by Mattel to become "U-Combine Combattra" (not sure why Mattel felt like the name had to be changed). Somehow the component vehicles retained their names (go figure). Note that each of the vehicles are intended to have extra parts that allow them to function separately that aren't incorporated into the combined robot.
I've always thought this toy to be the best thing that Mattel borrowed from Popy.

Comparison of the Combatter V/Combatra versions to help in identification.

All Mattel images and captions are copyright Mattel, all Popy, Banpresto, Unifive or Yutaka images and captions are copyright Popy/Bandai, images captured from various video segments are copyright Toei or other parties and used without permission. All other content, including images and editorial, is Copyright © 1997-2023 John Eaton and/or contributors unless otherwise stated. If there are any comments or objections, please contact John Eaton, by clicking here.

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