The Scientists of Monster Island are a group of five characters that appear in the 1967 arc "Monster Island" in the Cyborg 009 manga. They are the first sign that traces of the Black Ghost organization remain, as it is suggested to be what's funding their experiments and nefarious plans.
The five scientists each specialize in a different field, but constantly feud amongst each other over which of their methods is the best. They ride in a flying disk that can fire lasers, which they use to incinerate unruly subjects and to cause destruction, though their main base is a mansion in the middle of a forest.
In its original incarnation, as well as their appearance in Cyborg 009: The Cyborg Soldier, the group consists of:
- Dr. Shishigashira ("Lion's Mane"): A doctor with the appearance of a lion. Out of the experiments on the island, he is in charge of mind-controlled animals, particularly deer with poison-laced antlers.
- Dr. Dracula: A wizened, purple man with an appearance compared to that of a mummy. He is responsible for creating zombies from captured humans, rendering them with no heartbeat and being invulnerable to pain.
- Dr. Kong: A doctor with the appearance of a gorilla. He creates rampaging giants from captured humans.
- Dr. Alligator: A doctor with the appearance of an alligator. He creates robotic animals, including squirrels and rats.
- Dr. Mamushi ("Dr. Semushi" in original serialization): A small, hunchbacked man with buck teeth. His back can split open to release the poisonous insects that he's developed. He is proud of his "insanity insects", which cause people to lose their memories after being bitten into.
Likely for budget and story constraints, the group of five were reduced to a duo when the arc was adapted into the debut episode "The Terror of Monster Island".
Dr. Dracula and Dr. Semushi were presented as the only scientists, with Dracula now being responsible for the creation of giants.
2001 Anime (Cyborg Soldier)Edit
All five scientists are featured in the second season episode "Monster Island", where their creations are set upon a hapless traveler. Said traveler is poisoned by one of Dr. Mamushi's bugs, but Great Britain and Chang Changku, who happened to be nearby, bring him to Dr. Gilmore just in time to cure the traveler. This alerts the 00 cyborgs to potential Black Ghost-related activity.
When Britain, Chang, and Joe Shimamura go to investigate, they encounter more of the scientists' creations, including a large group of zombified humans and dogs. They are later attacked by a mushroom-shaped weapon belonging to the scientists, but they survive. Britain stays behind to see where the strange weapon came from, and discovers a man-made island full of genetically and cybernetically enhanced animals.
The 00 cyborgs sans Francoise Arnoul (who pilots the Dolphin) infiltrate the island by digging underground, where they also find the mushroom weapon. The scientists reveal themselves, and although they are accused of being affiliated with Black Ghost, the scientists claim to be a sophisticated and independent group, funded by Black Ghost's money. The monsters the 00 cyborgs encountered were originally innocent humans and animals subjected to genetic experiments.
The scientists set their zombified creations on the 00 cyborgs, but Joe finds their main control room and destroys their means of controlling the monsters. The zombies, now free of their masters, attack and presumably eat the scientists alive, while the rest go to destroy the island. Joe tries to convince the zombies to escape safely, but fellow 00 cyborg Jet Link tells him that there is no time and they must leave.
After the scientists' island is destroyed with their creations perishing in the explosion, the 00 cyborgs mull over the fact that the scientists used their funds and research to do evil things, just like Black Ghost did.
- Dr. Mamushi's name refers to the Japanese mamushi (Gloydius blomhoffii), a venomous pit viper. They along with the Okinawan habu (Trimeresurus flavoviridis) are considered to be the most poisonous and deadliest snakes in Japan, where up to 3000 people die from snake bites from a mamushi every year.
- His original name, Dr. Semushi, refers to the Japanese word for "hunchback" and reflects his physical appearance, much as the other doctors' names describe theirs. However, due to the term being considered offensive to people with the disability, this necessitated the change to "Mamushi" in later reprints, which may have come about to reflect his poisonous nature, as well as supply a similar-sounding name.
- As the 2001 "Cyborg Soldier" series was more of a finite adaptation designed to end at the Yomi arc, "Monster Island" was switched around to take place before that storyline. As the arc that originally followed "Monster Island", "The Middle East", was not adapted, the ending was changed so that the Monster Island scientists' deaths were confirmed, as well as removing the plot point where the scientists blew up Dr. Gilmore's place. In the manga, the scientists' ultimate fates are never given, as their disk heads off to the Middle East and set the events of the next arc in motion (though it could be assumed they died when 009 destroyed the Middle Eastern Black Ghost base).