Friday, January 7, 2011

METALKO The Amazing Robotman

Since 2011 is the Year of the Metal Rabbit, I hereby declare this January to be Metal Month. Let's get the ball rolling (literally, as you will see) with...

Created by writer Henry Sebastian and artist Bert Lopez, Metalko, The Amazing Robotman was the main feature of Amazing Robotman Pocketkomiks, published weekly by Mass Media Promotions, Inc. (a subsidiary of Atlas Publishing Co., Inc.) in 1986.
Metalko's bizarre saga began when Donya Isabel Rodriguez, wife of wealthy businessman Don Sancho Rodriguez, mysteriously gave birth to an unusual offspring: a living, sentient metal ball!

To save face, Don Sancho hastily adopts a normal baby boy and passes him off as his own newborn son, naming him Zandro.

As for the metal ball, Donya Isabel refuses to give it up and elects to raise it in seclusion, its existence known only to the Rodriguezes and the family physician Dr. Perez. It is discovered that the ball needs to be recharged regularly with about 1,000 volts of electricity in order to survive, which is administered through a special laser gun.

As the boy Zandro grew, he came to be close friends with the living metal ball, not realizing its true origins. The ball soon exhibited uncanny abilities, such as shape-shifting (although this ability appeared to be much too strenuous for the ball to keep up), as well as the power of flight.

During Zandro's birthday party, the metal ball decides to join in on the fun and comes out in the open. While the guests are amazed, they assume the ball is only some fancy toy. When Zandro calls out "Bolang metal ko," ("My metal ball"), the other kids in the party mistake it for the ball's name and start calling it "Metalko."

Zandro and the ball show off to the crowd, demonstrating the ball's flying and shape-shifting prowess. But after a while, the strain becomes too much for the ball, and it suddenly drops to the floor, cold and apparently lifeless.

The ball is given an emergency recharge, but it does not respond to the treatment. Realizing 1,000 volts is no longer enough to sustain it, Dr. Perez increases the dosage to 5,000 volts.

The laser gun overheats and malfunctions as a result, but the extra voltage does indeed revive the metal ball. It gives off a blinding glow, after which it floats off to Zandro's toy room. It stops next to one of the boy's toy robots and starts to mimic its shape.

Eventually, Metalko fully transforms into the "amazing robotman" of the title (and it only took about 17 chapters for it to happen!). But then, its body gives off an electrical discharge that causes a fire to break out in the mansion...

Don't worry. They made it out.

Metal Month continues next week with another amazing robot: Tobor!


  1. I collected some issues of Amazing Robotman Pocketkomiks, and was beginning to get bored to tears with this series. It was just a metal ball! I stopped buying the title didn't get to the point where he became a robot.

    What intrigued me more was the series entitled "Turboman." I hope you feature that, too.

  2. The big reveal of his final form was disappointing. The design was pretty generic, a poor Japanese mecha imitation. After 17 issues and that was it?

    I missed a couple of issues after, the last one I got had this big Transformers-like robot battle. I had no idea where the story was going. It probably got cancelled shortly after that.

    Yeah, Turboman had a lot more potential. I'll get to him eventually.