In the early 1970's, Go Nagai produced two legendary works that would eventually make it onto television, Devilman and Mazinger Z. There would be more, however. In October 1973, yet another of his works made it to the small screen -- Cutey Honey.
Kisaragi Honey is a normal girl who attends school, but there is one thing that makes her different from all the other girls. When she utters the words "Honey Flash!", she transforms to become a completely different person along with a corresponding uniform. Her transformation sequence does reveal a lot of skin though, more than the transformation sequences in the unedited Sailor Moon.
What is the secret to Honey's transformation? Not magic. She is an android created by Professor Kisaragi. Honey was made in the image of his deceased daughter, Kisaragi Honey. He wanted to create the perfect human who could easily adapt to any situation.
The situation becomes bad when the criminal organization, Panther Claw, discovers the existence of this android who can transform to adapt to any situation. Panther Claw is led by Panther Zora and Sister Jill. The leaders of Panther Claw are mostly female, and they are transformed through demonic powers to take on characteristics of certain animals; there is a Panther Tarantula, Panther Crab, etc. The lackeys are men who are dressed entirely in black and have claws on their hands.
Characteristic of Go Nagai's works, Cutey Honey contains the glorification of the female body, violence, and demonic creatures. It is no wonder that the PTA (Parent Teacher's Association) protested Go Nagai and his works. Cutey Honey quickly became a favorite manga and anime among boys in the '70s. The manga lasts over two volumes. There would later be a manga sequel to the series that lasted another two volumes.
In 1994, the first Cutey Honey OAVs were released in Japan. Under the name New Cutey Honey, this OAV series reached eight episodes and is domestically available from ADV (DVD version is in the works). This story takes place years after the original. Cutey Honey must be awakened to combat the evil that has plagued Cosplay City.
The Cutey Honey series is highly entertaining, and I recommend it to anyone who doesn't mind a little nudity here and there. The manga is definitely worth reading.