Patlabor Ep. 44: Long Live CLAT


Goto tells Shige that he’s being sent to New York for two weeks for labor maintenance. Shige boasts to everyone about going to New York and slips on the stairs, causing him to hit his head and pass out. He then wakes up on his flight and speaks with an old lady about being sent to help the NYPD labor team. He looks outside the window and sees the Statue of Liberty as the plane circles around. He then gets into a taxi and asks to go to the labor team headquarters, but the muscular driver doesn’t know where that is and pulls Shige out of the car. He then pulls out a machine gun and starts shooting at Shige. Shige runs away, but the taxi driver chases after him and keeps shooting until his car is destroyed by a bazooka blast from Kanuka. Kanuka drives Shige through the city and apologizes for being late due to traffic. They walk into a video rental store and sit in a viewing booth, which is actually a secret elevator that takes them down to the secret underground base for CLAT, the Crime Labor Attack Team. Kanuka tells him the secret base is located 90 meters under the Hudson and drives him to the hangar where their custom Ingrams are stored. Kanuka introduces him to her captain and head mechanic, who look identical to Goto and Sakaki. An alarm then goes off with orders for the Angel Team to mobilize. Pilots Andante (Noa) and Fortissimo (Ota) board their Ingrams and are raised up to the surface in a Central Park lake. CLAT reports to the scene at the Energy Research Center, where the enemy is an Abraham. A Shinshi lookalike wants to fire and can’t resist the urge to shoot missiles, which end up destroying the building entirely and miss the Abraham. Fortissimo shoots at the Abraham and threatens to shoot. The pilot abandons the labor, but Fortissimo keeps shooting and causes the Abraham to explode.

The next morning, Andante asks Shige if he slept well, but he thinks he’s suffering from jet lag. Shige sees the Asuma lookalike telling a joke and tries to tell one of his own, but nobody gets it. The captain walks in and tells everyone that they’re having lunch in honor of Shige, but the Abraham was a distraction. Kanuka says the thieves stole a Geo-Crystal and explains to Shige that it’s a crystal that stores energy tapped directly from the Earth’s core. The Shinshi lookalike says it’s 99.8 percent efficient, and Shige realizes that would dwarf the energy from uranium or plutonium. Kanuka tells Shige that Mr. Godwood (Sakaki) wants to speak with him, and Shige visits the lab, where crazy old men conduct dangerous experiments with guns and volatile chemicals. Godwood comments that machines are honest, and Shige says that his boss often says the same thing. Godwood apologizes for dragging Shige over from Japan and says he needs help with some blueprints. Everyone else waits for Shige at lunch, and a call comes in that the UN building is under attack from a mysterious giant labor. A battered Shige tells Kanuka that they were finally able to complete the new scramble system. Andante and Fortissimo board their Ingrams, which are loaded onto the underground catapult system and activate their Shige Fields to travel through the water. They then activate their Godwood Drives and activate flight systems upon reaching the surface. Andante and Fortissimo fly over to the UN building, which is under attack from Mega Iron, a giant robot armed with a wand that contains the Geo-Crystal. The old woman from the plane appears as a masked villain and attacks Andante and Fortissimo, forcing them to run away. Mega Iron jumps up and smashes Fortissimo’s Ingram, but its foot gets caught in the ground. Andante fires her gun and tells the villainess to surrender peacefully. She’s taken into custody, and Shige starts disarming the self-destruct system in the Geo-Crystal wand. Kanuka says it’s too complex for her, but Shige pulls out the wrong chipboard, causing the Geo-Crystal to explode and destroy North America. Shige then wakes up and confuses Sakaki for Godwood. Goto tells Shige that he broke his leg falling down the stairs and will need three weeks to recover. Sakaki tells him he can forget about the trip to New York, but Shige says it’s ok because he had a good dream.


This bizarre, off-the-wall episode is one of my favorite in all of Patlabor. Shige is sent on a trip to New York, but he doesn’t get very far since he breaks his leg and launches into a weird dream. In this dream, New York is filled with Arnold Schwarzenegger-esque men, cabbies shoot at their passengers and NYPD officers regularly travel around with bazookas. New York’s labor team is a super advanced group named CLAT (watch for that name again), which is based out of a super robot-like secret base. Their team consists of complete lookalikes of SV2, along with the Spanish Inquisition from Monty Python for no reason. I guess no one expects the Spanish Inquisition, right? Of course, CLAT excels at ultra violence, with the Shinshi lookalike being even worse than Ota/Fortissimo. I guess if your image of America is based on action movies and TV shows, it’s natural to have such a hilariously inaccurate view of what the country is like.

Overall Rating

Patlabor Info

Naoyuki Yoshinaga

Kazunori Ito
Mamoru Oshii
Hiroyuki Hoshiyama
Naoto Kimura
Tetsuo Takahashi
Michiko Yokote
Hibari Arisu

Mechanical Designer(s):
Yutaka Izubuchi
Yoshinori Sayama

Character Designer:
Akemi Takada

Musical Composer:
Kenji Kawai

47 episodes

Japan 10.11.1989 – 09.26.1990


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