Choujinki Metalder is the sixth and shortest entry of the Metal Hero Series franchise, running from March 16, 1987, to January 17, 1988, for only 39 episodes. It was the first series to air on Sundays instead of Mondays.
Metalder bears many similarities to Toei’s Android Kikaider and Kikaider 01, particularly in its themes, characters, and the hero’s costume design. The action footage of Superhuman-Machine Metalder was used for Saban Entertainment’s live-action TV series VR Troopers. On February 21, 2007, Toei released the complete Superhuman-Machine Metalder TV series and the Superhuman-Machine Metalder film on a seven-disc DVD set.
For distribution purposes, Toei refers to this television series as Metalder.
In 1945, Dr. Ryūichirō Koga designed Metalder as a top-secret weapon for the Japanese Imperial Army for use in the Pacific War, modeling it after his late son, Second Sub-lieutenant Tatsuo Koga. However, the pacifistic Dr. Koga put Metalder to sleep in the Silver Caucus base and left for the United States to work for NASA.
During the 42 years, Dr. Koga’s former colleague Kunio Muraki became evil God Neros, the ruler of the Neros Empire which is notorious as a merchant of death. God Neros sends out his massive armies to kill Dr. Kōga, who learned of their organization and returned to Japan to activate Metalder. Koga desperately tries to activate his android creation, who he named Ryūsei Tsurugi, but the android is unable to understand what to do. In order to give Ryusei a “purpose”, Koga runs out of the Silver Caucus base, allowing Neros’ troops to kill him. Suddenly seeing his creator die, Ryūsei becomes shocked, and soon is beaten by Neros’ troops. Ryūsei becomes fueled with rage, evoking the conversion to his true form, the android known as Metalder. After a brief battle with Coolgin (which he loses), Ryūsei goes onward, meeting future friend Mai Ougi.