A Cigarette-Smoking Superhero? Yes

Dear David: Was there a cartoon on in the early to mid-1970s called “The Eight Man”? He was a robot that got rejuvenated by smoking cigarettes he had in his belt. I believe that is why it got canceled. My friends think I’m nuts. Can you help? – P.G., via e-mail

Dear P.G.: Actually, it was called “The Eighth Man,” and it was a syndicated series that aired in the mid-1960s. The hero, Tobor (Spell it backwards for a swell clue!) was a slain police officer who was rebuilt as a crime-fighting robot.

“The Eighth Man” was produced in Japan, and began life as a comic book. In the comic, the Eighth Man received a burst of energy by lighting a “power pill” that looked just like a, well, cigarette. But in the animated American version, a power pill was substituted.

Here’s the first episode:

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