Countdown to Archie's Mega Man, Day 2: Captain N: The Game Master

The first time Mega Man stepped out of the world of video games and into mainstream media, he didn't wind up having to make a very big transition.  He co-starred as a member of the N-Team in Captain N: The Game Master, an animated cartoon which aired from 1989-1991 on NBC (who, incidentally, has aired their fair share of Archie-based programming). In Captain N, a teenager named Kevin Keene is sucked through his television into the world of Videoland, a universe where what game players see on their TV is actually happening in reality.  Kevin, now dubbed "Captain N," teams up with video game heroes (including Mega Man) to stop the allied forces of villainy (including Dr. Wily) from conquering all video game worlds.

A video game adapted to a cartoon about video games. Pretty hard to mess up, right?

Unfortunately, for whatever reason, most video game characters wound up completely unrecognizable.  While fans have known Mega Man as the "Blue" Bomber almost since he arrived on the scene, the Mega Man of Captain N was anything but.  Instead of the popular video games' two-hued blue bot with a mighty Mega Buster arm cannon, viewers were greeted with a raspy-voiced Mega Man who wore different shades of green and yellow, had a bizarre visor covering his eyes, and fired his signature energy blasts from small blasters atop his gloves.

And while Mega Man has always been rather short at just over four feet tall, Captain N took him to a new low: he only barely came up to about the knee of Captain N himself!

Other characters received some rather considerable makeovers as well: Dr. Light was an equally-short fellow with elf ears and green scrubs, while Roll-- or her nearest equivalent-- was called Mega Girl, a pink-and-white female version of the show's Mega Man with blonde pigtails.

The various Robot Masters Mega Man fights, such as Cut Man, saw drastic changes as well.  In fact, the only way one would know that they were the same is that they both featured some form of scissors atop their head!  But at least Dr. Wily came through relatively unscathed; the only real change to his design was that he was given a pair of running shoes (which stands to reason, given how often he has to flee from Mega Man).

Fortunately, we have come a long way since Captain N took to the airwaves, and fans can breath a huge sigh of relief when Mega Man #1 arrives later this month.  Rest assured, Mega Man will indeed be blue and look more like a normal person as he fights to save his city and the world (which is nothing at all like the floating city of Megaland in Captain N) from the classic Robot Masters which fans of the video games will instantly recognize, expertly drawn in a style by artist Patrick "Spaz" Spaziante which meshes perfectly with the games you know and love.

The new Mega Man is blue, true, and coming straight to you, provided you remember to subscribe in The Archie Comic Shop.  And if you subscribe now, you'll receive an awesome two-sided poster featuring some of Spaz's art from the first two issues, as well as an autograph from the man himself.

So don't delay; subscribe today!

Welcome to Videoland!

If you've been looking for a legal way to watch episodes of Captain N: The Game Master (as well as The Super Mario Bros. Super Show!, The Legend of Zelda, Sonic Underground, Pole Position, and even cartoons not based on video games) without dropping the money on the DVD sets, then you're in luck. The peculiarly-named website Jaroo is described by nerdblog Topless Robot as being like "Hulu for kids," except the material shown on the site isn't new and current stuff, but stuff that is rather old.

There aren't very many episodes of any given show available presently, but "new" ones are added at regular intervals, with dates given at the bottom of the page for any given show. Fortunately for Mega Man fans with a bit of curiosity about 20-year old licensing deals (or those who are simply masochists), not only is the pilot episode available, but also the two-part episodes "Videolympics" and "Mega Trouble in Mega Land," the latter of which contains some very... interesting takes on the villainous Robot Masters of the first Mega Man game.

For those interested in learning more about the series, you can read its entry in our Mega Man Universe wiki.

Custom Mega Man from Megaland

Sometimes, when you're a fan of something long enough, you learn to take some of the older, less-favorable stuff in stride. Such is the case with this custom figure by one Kyle Robinson, whose work I found when doing research for a separate article. Kyle took one of Jazwares' Retro Roto Mega Man figures, and turned it into the Mega Man from the late 80s DiC cartoon, Captain N: The Game Master. And honestly? He's done a bang-up job, given what he had to work with.

It's almost too bad there's not accompanying figures of the other characters from the series. Sure, it was perplexing then (to put it nicely), but is one chapter of Mega Man's history that he has in common with other franchises, such as Adam West's Batman or the old Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles cartoon. I don't think anyone would want a new cartoon with this Mega Man, but it's all in the past now as a curious footnote in the Blue Bomber's history.

It's also an interesting visual, with more regular Mega Man proportions being used, plus a Mega Buster.

Source: Kyle Robinson Customs