The Human Vapor (1960)

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Image gallery for The Human Vapor
Credits for The Human Vapor
The Human Vapor soundtrack

Transforming Human Series
The Secret of the Telegian
The Human Vapor
The Human Vapor
The Japanese poster for The Human Vapor
Alternate titles
Flagicon Japan.png The First Gas Man (1960)
See alternate titles
Directed by Ishiro Honda
Producer(s) Tomoyuki Tanaka
Written by John Meredyth Lucas (story),
Takeshi Kimura (screenplay)
Music by Kunio Miyauchi
Distributor TohoJP, Brenco Pictures CorporationUS
Rating Unrated
Running time 92 minutesJP
(1 hour, 32 minutes)
81 minutesUS
(1 hour, 21 minutes)
Aspect ratio 2.35:1
Rate this film!
(7 votes)

Half man... Half beast! Born of woman, re-created by outer space! - Yet, loves like a man!

— English tagline

The Human Vapor (ガス人間㐧1号,   Gasu Ningen Daiichigō, lit. The First Gas Man)[note 1] is a 1960 tokusatsu film produced by Toho. It is considered to be the third film in Toho's Transforming Human Series, after The H-Man and The Secret of the Telegian. The film was released to Japanese theaters on December 11, 1960, and to American theaters on May 20, 1964.

Plot[edit | edit source]

The film tells the story of Mizuno, a librarian who has been given the ability to become vapor after a scientist performs an experiment on him. Mizuno uses this power to engage in criminal activities, robbing banks to give the money to his love interest, the dancer Fujichiyo. Police Lieutenant Kenji Okamoto and his reporter girlfriend Kyoko (Keiko Sata) work together to solve the criminal case and attempt to bring things to a peaceful conclusion.

Staff[edit | edit source]

Staff role on the left, staff member's name on the right.

Cast[edit | edit source]

Actor's name on the left, character played on the right.

  • Tatsuya Mihashi   as   Detective Okamoto
  • Kaoru Yachigusa   as   Fujichiyo Kasuga
  • Yoshio Tsuchiya   as   Mizuno, the Human Vapor
  • Keiko Sada   as   Kyoko Kono
  • Hisaya Ito   as   Doctor Tamiya
  • Yoshibumi Tajima   as   Sergeant Tabata
  • Yoshio Kosugi   as   Detective Inao
  • Fuyuki Murakami   as   Dr. Sano
  • Bokuzen Hidari   as   Jiya
  • Takamaru Sasaki   as   Police Chief
  • Minosuke Yamada   as   Official Hayama
  • Tatsuo Matsumura   as   Editor Ikeda
  • Yoyo Miyata   as   Bank manager
  • Ko Mishima   as   Detective Fujita
  • Kozo Nomura   as   Kawasaki
  • Ren Yamamoto   as   Nomura, robber
  • Somesho Matsumoto   as   Fujichiyo's teacher
  • Yasuhisa Tsutsumi   as   Police officer
  • Akira Yamada
  • Shoichi Hirose   as   Guard
  • Tetsu Nakamura   as   Tobe, journalist
  • Toki Shiozawa   as   Satoyo, wife
  • Jiro Kumagai   as   Kajimoto
  • Kamayuki Tsubono   as   Policeman Ozaki
  • Rinsaku Ogata   as   Policeman Nakatani
  • Keiji Sakakida   as   Guard
  • Yutaka Oka   as   Audience member
  • Keisuke Yamada   as   Police Chief
  • Yukihiko Gondo   as   Detective
  • Akio Kusama   as   Police Chief
  • Mitsuo Matsumoto   as   Kamata
  • Koichi Sato   as   Audience member
  • Hiroshi Akitsu
  • Hideo Shibuya
  • Masaaki Tachibana
  • Tadahiko Kuroda   as   Audience member
  • Minoru Ito
  • Wataru Omae
  • Ko Hayami
  • Jiro Suzukawa
  • Shinjiro Hirota
  • Haruo Nakajima   as   bank patron with black glasses (uncredited)

English dub[edit | edit source]

Appearances[edit | edit source]

Monsters[edit | edit source]

Gallery[edit | edit source]

Main article: The Human Vapor/Gallery.

Soundtrack[edit | edit source]

Main article: The Human Vapor (Soundtrack).

Alternate titles[edit | edit source]

  • The First Gas Man (literal Japanese title)
  • The Human Vapour (alternate English spelling)
  • A Cloud of Terror (Una nube di terrore; Italy)
  • The Secret of the Gas Man (O Segredo do Homem Gasoso; Brazil)

Theatrical releases[edit | edit source]

U.S. release[edit | edit source]

U.S. The Human Vapor poster

The Human Vapor was released theatrically in the United States in 1964 by Brenco Pictures Corporation. It was later re-released on a double feature with Gorath in 1969. The American version re-structured the film from a mystery story to a narrative focused around Mizuno told from his point of view. Approximately 11 minutes of footage was cut, while a portion of Kunio Miyauchi's score was replaced with stock music, primarily from Paul Sawtell's score for The Fly. Eventually, the rights to the film in the U.S. were acquired by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, who released it on VHS throughout the 1980s and 1990s. The film is currently unavailable on DVD or Blu-ray in the United States, though it occasionally airs on Comet TV.

Stage adaptation[edit | edit source]


Toho produced a stage adaptation of The Human Vapor in October 2009, with a cast that included Kumi Mizuno.[1] No recording of the show has surfaced, although it was broadcast on NHK on February 26, 2010.[2]

Unmade sequel[edit | edit source]

Main article: Frankenstein vs. The Human Vapor.

After The Human Vapor proved a box office success in both Japan and the United States, producer Tomoyuki Tanaka began to plan for a sequel entitled Frankenstein vs. The Human Vapor. The sequel's premise would revolve around Mizuno, having actually survived the film's climax, seeking out Frankenstein's monster in order to find the secret of his immortality and use it to revive his love interest, who perished in the climax. However the film never came to pass, although Frankenstein's monster would later appear in Toho's Frankenstein vs. Baragon in 1965.

Video releases[edit | edit source]

Toho DVD (2002)

  • Region: 2
  • Discs: 1
  • Audio: Japanese (Mono, 5.1)
  • Subtitles: Japanese
  • Special features: Isolated score, audio commentary by actress Kaoru Yachigusa, Japanese theatrical trailer, still galleries of publicity materials, Toho sci-fi props, and actors

Toho Blu-ray (2021) [Transforming Human Series][3]

  • Region: A
  • Discs: 2
  • Audio: Japanese (Mono, 5.1, isolated score)
  • Subtitles: Japanese
  • Special features: Audio commentaries for The H-Man (Kenji Sahara), The Secret of the Telegian (Tadao Nakamaru), and The Human Vapor (Kaoru Yachigusa)
  • Notes: Packaged with Invisible Man, The H-Man, and The Secret of the Telegian. To be released on November 24.

Videos[edit | edit source]

Trailers[edit | edit source]

Japanese The Human Vapor trailer
U.S. The Human Vapor trailers

Miscellaneous[edit | edit source]

Ending of the Italian version, combining the editing of the American version with the music and newspaper insert of the Japanese version

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • The surf rock band Man or Astro-man? is named after one of Brenco Pictures' taglines for The Human Vapor.

External links[edit | edit source]

Notes[edit | edit source]

  1. While The Human Vapor's Japanese title was originally written using the irregular kanji 㐧 (dai), it is sometimes substituted with the more common rendering 第 in modern media, such as in the title of its 2010 stage adaptation or on its Japanese streaming listings. Furthermore, the film's posters and screenplay write its title with the kanji 一 (ichi; "one"). On virtually all other media, including the film's title card and promotional materials, this is replaced by the numeral 1.

References[edit | edit source]

This is a list of references for The Human Vapor. These citations are used to identify the reliable sources on which this article is based. These references appear inside articles in the form of superscript numbers, which look like this: [1]


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