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Giant of the Heavens
Cyborg 009 (1968)
Episode 12
009 '68 ep. 12
Air date June 21, 1968
Written by Masaki Tsuji
Directed by Makoto Nogo
Episode guide
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Secret of the Devil's Castle

Giant of the Heavens (天かける巨人?) is the twelfth episode of the 1968 anime series.



Plot SummaryEdit

An aging aerospace engineer wants his design of a hypersonic aircraft to fly in a successful test run. However, two of his attempts end in failure with the plane crashing. The 00 cyborgs suspect this to be the work of sabotage, so 009 volunteers to be the test pilot for the third test flight. An assassin stows away on the plane in an effort to kill 009 and end the test flights once and for all. Can Joe keep this killer at bay and protect the dreams of an aviator?

Episode RecapEdit

009 and 007 are at Morris Aerodynamics on behalf of Dr. Gilmore to see an old colleague of his, Mr. Rune, perform tests on his latest aerospace invention of a new aircraft design. The two observe from the wind tunnel as the frame and wings of the new jet are tested for wind resistance and lift. Mr. Rune orders the wind tunnel to be turned on and they watch as the wings withstand the wind force of Mach 1, 2 and eventually after a bit of tension, the wings pass the endurance test for Mach 3. A shadowy figure lurks in the background as the tests conclude and uses an electromagnet to knock over a support beam, which puts Mr. Rune's granddaughter Anna in danger. 009 rescues her while 007 makes a fool of himself by falling head first onto the hard floor when trying to rescue Anna himself. Mr. Morris introduces Mr. Rune to 009 and 007 and says they are here on Dr. Gilmore's behalf. 007 then attempts to boast about himself in order to be recognized. An engineer named Julian explains to Mr. Morris that the switch for the electromagnet is working fine and was not sabotaged. Mr. Morris introduces Julian to 009, but Julian just sneers at the cyborg when 009 tries to shake his hand.

At a hotel, Mr. Rune tells 009 about his dream to build a large supersonic transport plane for passengers to fly on, a dream that his old friend Mr. Morris was willing to fund through his company at a field in The Republic of Barbara. Anna laughs and says ones her grandfather talks about planes there is no stopping him, offering choux cream pastries she made for everyone.

Mr. Rune says his latest creation shall be called Thales, after the Greek philosopher. The plane will be the largest and fastest commercial airliner in the world with a cruising altitude of 25,000 miles, allowing it to reach any airport in the world without the need for refueling during the trip to its destination. Mr. Rune's crowning achievement though is that the plane will reach Mach 3.5., faster than any transsonic airliner. He also shows off the Thales other features, like a flexible canard nose during acceleration to reach max speed and a detachable flying control capsule that would allow the passengers and the crew to evacuate in an emergency. While Mr. Rune want the plane to be an airliner, he also sees it as a means of hauling cargo and freight as it can carry a maximum of 100 tons. Mr. Rune says the only drawback to his genius design is that only a few select airports have big enough runways for his plane to land on, but Thales fixes this by having special variable swept wings with reinforced frames to resist the friction of supersonic travel. Mr. Rune says the Thales is the result of his life's work of aerospace engineering, his final gift to the world as he has spent some of the remaining years of his life getting it ready.

A montage of the Thales is seen as each component is testes and Mr. Rune observes each assembly and battery of tests. After a long period of work, the Thales MK I is assembled and ready for her maiden flight. The Press have arrived to witness the historic day and Mr. Rune shakes Mr. Morris's hand, thanking his old friend for supporting his lifelong dream. But in the crowd, Julian smiles with a sinister grin. Mr. Morris orders the flight crew to commence the test as a news reporter speaks about this flight's significance. The Thales moves onto the runway, ready for takeoff and activates her jet thrusters. Mr. Rune gives the order for Thales to launch and she darts across the runway, ready to soar into the air. But a problem starts to arise as the landing gear creaks and moans and a single loose and crooked screw causes the right rear landing wheel to break apart. This shifts the weight of the Thales and she tumbles into a skid and spins on the ground out of control. The wrecked plane finally stops but the cockpit explodes and bursts into flames. Mr. Rune looks on in shock and then in sadness as this wasn't supposed to happen. Unbeknownst to the others, Julian smiles at the turn of events.

Mr. Rune, upset at the loss of what should have been his greatest achievement, packs his things from his hotel and is going to announce he is resigning from Morris Aerodynamics and quit his work. 009 asks why, and Mr. Rune says he should be responsible for the accident as it was his invention, plus he is tired and feels that maybe he should just go home and retire. 009 refuses to believe that Mr. Rune would give up on his dream, but the old man somberly says that is all it was; just a dream. He thinks he has upset his old friend Mr. Morris who had taken a huge financial risk to his company because of him being a self-labeled "senile old engineer", quitting will make up for that loss so they can save face. 009 says that is foolish to think it is his dream alone as every hard working welder, engineer and employee at Morris helped him build the Thales. 009 says by giving up his dream, Mr. Rune is giving up on the very people who share his dream. Mr. Morris hears 009's impassioned speech and agrees and he has a Thales MK II being assembled with or without him. Mr. Rune gets his passion back as he says there needs to be several design revisions on the first model before they can build a second. Mr. Morris tells his old friend he won't give up on him and encourages him to try again. Realizing he is not alone in his dream, Mr. Rune agrees to return and start work on the next prototype.

After another assembly montage, Mr. Rune prepares to test the escape capsule of the MK II. He asks Julian to give the order to launch the capsule and he relays that order to the pilot. The capsule fires its jets and prepares to take off, but once again Julian smiles as he watches it prepare for takeoff. The capsule takes off into the air and just after Mr. Rune gives the order to ascend to test its altitude range, the afterburners stop working and the capsule falls to the earth and crashes into a fireball. Julian comments that once again the old man has produced a failure. 007 seems suspicious of this and follows Julian in the guise of a puppy. He follows Julian to an old hangar and finds him dealing with a bunch of thugs by giving them money for a job well done as Morris will have taken enough damage financially that it will never recover from. 007 is found and the saboteurs tie the "puppy" up. The saboteurs reveal that Julian is giving them money to commit corporate sabotage because he wasn't promoted to chief engineer for Morris Aerodynamics. 007 speaks and scares the saboteurs then transforms into a gorilla to scare them even more, then a rooster, a car with eyeballs, a samurai, a geisha, a Godzilla-like dinosaur and a ghost upon the saboteurs mentioning 007 was one. The saboteurs try to pull out their guns to shoot 007 but he turns into a cannon and blasts them.

In a park, Anna reveals her grandfather is again quitting and they are going home. 009 wonders if there is anything he can do to help convince them otherwise, but Anna says that while she appreciates his help, her grandfather has endured enough heartbreak seeing his dreams become tragedy. If she tried any more she fears it would kill his spirit. She says goodbye to 009 and she was glad to have met him. 009 says he hopes to see her again someday and Anna kisses him on the cheek, then runs away into the night and boards a ship with her grandfather.

Mr. Morris finds a note on his desk from Mr. Rune saying the only way he could atone for his failure was to leave without saying goodbye to his old friend. Mr. Rune hopes by leaving he won't run Mr. Morris's company into the ground and it can recover its losses. Mr. Morris thinks his friend is being foolish for giving up so easily and asks Julian if the spare capsule is ready to be put on the MK II. Julian says it is and Mr. Morris orders him to install it and prepare for a test flight. Mr. Morris says if it succeeds he wants to give the credit to his friend and part of the profits. If it fails, he will take full responsibility and whatever it entails, even his own company. Julian tries to end this by saying they have no pilot as the last one was hospitalized from the last crash for three months. The Thales is such an advanced and complicated jet that it needs a specially trained pilot to fly it and getting a replacement ready would take months. 009 volunteers to fly the capsule and the Thales as he has seen the cockpit and has a general idea of how it works and met with the pilot once who went over how the plane works. Julian is horrified as he thinks his plans to ruin Morris will come undone and tries to weasel his way out of this predicament with a lie that 009 is an ametuer and a risk and they should cancel the tests. 007 arrives and says that Julian is a crook as he has tried to sabotage the flights. Julian denies this and tells Mr. Morris not to believe the words of a child, but 007 prove it by changing into the puppy again, which Julian recognizes. He then tells Julian that he has captured the saboteurs he was working with. Mr. Morris demands an explanation from Julian, but he flees knowing he can't talk his way out of it. 009 chases after him into the hanger and Julian uses the Thales as a shield knowing 009 would not want to damage it and then escapes.

The Thales MK II prepares for her maiden flight, with Mr. Morris giving a speech to the press that this test will make or break his company's financial future and he is willing to risk it all and Cyborg 009 will shoulder the weight of the dreams of his employees and his friend. One reporter notes a that the second model funneled all of Morris Aerodynamics remaining resources into it. Mr. Morris asks for a flight check from 009 before ordering the launch.

As the plane moves onto the runway, Mr. Morris prays to God that he will protect the Thales. After a bit of tension from the onlooking crowds, the Thales soars off the ground and into the air. Mr. Morris thanks 009 as the Thales soars into the heavens and 007 in the form of a mouse pats himself on the back for a job well done in stopping the saboteurs. 007 then notices that Julian is behind 009 with a gun pointed at his head, ordering the cyborg to continue flying. 007 tries to rescue 009 but a cargo box crate falls on his tail and he gets stuck. 009 knows he could take the bullet and it would bounce off him, but he does not want to risk the deflected bullet hitting the Thales controls and obeys Julian's orders until he has an opening to fight back. Mr. Morris notices this from the control tower and radios 009 to ask what is wrong as he is going off course. Julian reveals since he cannot destroy the plane now that it is a success, he will fly it across the border to a rival company who will pay him millions to examine the Thales design. As Julian gloats, 009 sees his opening and makes a hard bank right, knocking the hijacker into a wall. 009 scuffles with him but accidentally pushes the yoke causing the plane to go into a dive. Julian then tries to strangle 009 as they fall. Mr. Morris notes that at this altitude, a crash is going to possibly happen. The plane keep heading downward and 009 finally frees himself from Julian's grip, falls backward and uses his leg to push the steering back to neutral position so the plane can level out from its fall. The plane pulls up and levels out, barely missing a building in Tokyo before 009 turns around to see he is about to crash into Tokyo Tower. 009 banks a hard left upward and misses the landmark, the jolt of which causes Julian to hit his head against the other wall of the plane and he goes unconscious for a few minutes. 009 breathes a sigh of relief and sees that 007 has tied Julian up. 009 wonders what took 007 so long, but 007 said he had his reasons as an image of his ripped pants shows he had to tear his uniform to break free.

009 radios the control tower and apologizes for the scare but he is back in control of the aircraft for the tests. As 009 flies the Thales, 007 spots a cruise ship. Anna sees the Thales and tells her grandfather. The Thales makes a pass at the ship and circles it with 009 waving to Mr. Rune. Mr. Rune stands in disbelief and then starts to cry, happy to see his dream soaring through the blue skies. 009 then tests the engines at maximum power and does a few aerial tricks to test the Thales steering at high speed. Anna congratulates her grandfather on his success. 009 radios the control tower and says all the systems check out and the Thales is ready to return home to the Airport, ending the episode.

NotesEdit

  • Morris Areodynamics is a fictional company. But by 1984, a similarly named real company called Morris Air was founded, a small airline that was based in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. It closed in 1994 and merged with Southwest Airlines.

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