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File:Golgo13 TVTropes.jpg

Golgo 13 is a long-running action/drama manga created by Takao Saito, first published in 1968, about the titular assassin. The manga has been adapted into an animated movie and a 60-minute OVA sequel, The Professional and Queen Bee, along with two live-action movies and several video games. A TV anime based on the series aired in Japan in 2008.

Duke Togo (codename: Golgo 13) is a mysterious Cold Sniper of indeterminate but somehow Japanese ancestry, who is notorious for never failing an assignment. He follows several rules about his assignments (for instance, he will only meet clients once, and refuses to enter long-term contracts with clients), but he will accept any job without moral compunctions. However, his clients must always tell him their reasons for the job and be honest about them — and any betrayal or double-crossing will not be forgiven.

Like James Bond, his Spiritual Ancestor, he is a successful womanizer, but he's also notorious for maintaining the same unchanging expression during sex as he does in the rest of his life.

Although many of the stories featuring Golgo 13 revolve around the current assignment, the sheer volume of installments have led to an increasing number of stories that mainly focus on his current clients or victims, with Golgo making only a token appearance (one story focused on the effect of just the threat of his presence, with Golgo never appearing in the actual story). Several other stories have had him making brushes with history: Duke Togo spent time in prison with Nelson Mandela, he was partially responsible for Princess Diana's death while assassinating a fictional counterpart of Prince Dodi Al-Fayed, and he even shot the ballots that would have won Al Gore the 2000 U.S. Presidential elections. Golgo 13's been around.

This series contains examples of:

  • Ascended Extra - The black hitman Spartacus, who fought against Duke Togo in the manga, appears as a boss in the first NES game, as well as in the TV series, making one of the few character besides Duke himself who appeared in numerous Golgo 13 media.
  • All Amazons Want Hercules: The female assassins being the amazons.
  • All There in the Manual - The editor for Viz Signature's US release of Golgo 13 manga went absolutely apeshit with detail. The appendix of all 13 volumes contains everything you'd want to know about the man himself, right down to statistical analysis of his sex habits. His favorite soap? Brown Windsor.
  • All Women Are Lustful — Although Laura Dawson from The Professional is probably an exception to this.
  • Anti-Hero (Type V): Golgo 13.
  • Art Shift
  • Awesomeness By Analysis / Clock King / Crazy Prepared — Golgo does outstanding investigative work and research for every hit he makes, and measures every little detail to make sure he strikes at the exact time. He studies his victim's habits, patterns, henchmen, and any other factor that might contribute or hinder the assassination attempt. Even more interesting is when he investigates rival assassins, whom he sometimes has to work against. He also has myriad contacts, like investigators, weaponsmiths, etc. to provide him with all the information and equipment needed for the job. If any fictional character can give Batman a run for his money in the Crazy Prepared department, it's Golgo 13.
    • In the fifth episode of the anime, he goes against an outstanding Polish sniper, and studies his technique so intensely, he actually finds a strategy to beat him based on the fact that the sniper would compensate shots by moving the rifle A THIRD OF AN INCH. The video analyst that was viewing the video couldn't even tell the movement was made.
    • In the fourth episode, he startles a Mafia don's bodyguard into drawing his gun so he could measure his draw speed. He then tricks the bodyguard into taking away Golgo's client, and when he's pulling her out of the car, he makes his move. Since the bodyguard was pulling the client out of the car with his dominant hand, he had a few microseconds of advantage at the draw.
    • One manga story included in the Viz release had a CIA satellite photo analyst attempting to turn Duke into his own Boxed Crook with the help of a top-secret stealth spy satellite; he arranged for it to be overhead both when he met with Golgo and when Duke made the contracted hit. Because the first assassination date was overcast, the analyst rescheduled for the next window. After the new time came, the analyst looked at the photo of where Golgo was supposed to shoot from — and figured out that Duke was just standing there, looking at the camera. Just from the three times and places he was supposed to appear, Duke managed to figure out the orbit of the satellite. (See Moe Greene Special below for what happened next.)
  • Badass: He's pretty much the most badass contract killer in fictional history, period.
    • Genius Bruiser — In the 3rd episode of Golgo 13 TV series, the titular hitman is in a sniper duel with two mercenaries using advanced rifles superior to his own M16, and modified with a unique electronic "super scope". Based on their firing patterns, he deduces that the scopes have a vulnerability in that they do not take shifts in gradient into account. He then calculates the gradient necessary for their shots to be totally inaccurate, and positions himself in an area of the battlefield with that gradient, easily blowing them away. Duke Togo- international assassin, and maths nerd.
  • Badass in a Nice Suit
  • Berserk Button — Do NOT betray him and do NOT stand behind him. It's dangerous.
  • Bill Clinton — One of the Golgo 13 features Bill Clinton... having smiley sex in the Oval Office
    • President Clinton is one of the few people to hire Golgo 13 more than once ("Supergun" and "Eye of God" - indirectly in the latter case).
  • Boom! Headshot! — Golgo 13 pretty much 'always' achieves this in most of his missions. Also, in Top Secret Episode for the NES, a 'Sniper Mode' is featured in the East Berlin stage.
  • Brainy Brunette: Rita from The Professional. She helps out in modifying Golgo's M16 rifle for his missions in addition to lending him a car.
  • Call a Hit Point a Smeerp — The Golgo 13 light-gun arcade games reward/punish for accuracy instead of whether you (playing as Golgo) get hit. You start the game with 100% "reliability". Do well on a typical mission and you will gain 30% reliability up to the 100% maximum but no further. Miss the mark and your reliability goes down 80%. When your reliability goes down to 0%, you can't get a job because you're, well, not reliable, and you'll have to continue or accept a game over. All in all, it's a reasonably clever take on Calling A Hit Point A Smeerp while avoiding the Hostage Spirit Link problem: you won't take damage for hitting the wrong people, but nobody will trust you enough to hire you as a hitman.
  • Career Killers — Golgo exemplifies the Assassin archetype from this trope.
  • Casanova — Explored to an extent in Golgo 13. The title character tends to have sex before a job, and does have good luck at getting women to join him in bed. However, he just as often hires prostitutes, and due to his notorious blank expression not changing, a number of readers have theorized he doesn't actually enjoy it.
  • Catch Phrase — "I'll take the job."
    • "I will hear your story."
  • Coitus Uninterruptus — Golgo 13 has occasionally had informants walk in on him while he was screwing a random female, all the while his expression doesn't change one bit.
    • On one occasion, police officers arrested him while he was having sex. When he stood up, he didn't... how shall we put this... "lay down". One cop was surprised, the other disgusted.
  • Cold Sniper — And how
  • Comic Book Time — By all rights he ought to be in his early 70s at the least, but that damn expressionless face doesn't seem much more wrinkly than it's ever been. Then again, maybe he's been spending his fees on plastic surgery.
  • Conspicuous CG — Check out this little number from The Professional.
    • The director of The Professional was a huge fan of CGI. That's the first use of it in anime history.
    • The TV series uses it for automobiles in motion, Target 18 in particular.
  • Consummate Professional — He was, for a time, the page picture for a reason. You hire him, he does the job. No exceptions. His client died before he could fulfill the contract? He does the job. No exceptions. Oh, his target is a child, so it'll reveal he's actually a Hitman with a Heart, right? NOPE. HE DOES THE JOB. NO EXCEPTIONS.
  • Contract on the Hitman — Although Duke Togo is strictly a freelance agent, he's frequently been double-crossed by his employers. This never ends well for them, since it's the closest to his Berserk Button. And seriously, why do they even bother? The guy's so much of a Consummate Professional that, as long as you pay him and not betray him, he'll NEVER come after you.
  • Conviction by Counterfactual Clue — Not exactly conviction and not exactly counterfactual, but pretty much every time anyone hears the name "Duke Togo" in the TV series they immediately identify it as Japanese. While Togo is a Japanese last name, the idea that people wouldn't initially mistake it for Italian or Greek or something is ridiculous.
  • Deadpan Snarker — Earlier installments tended to have Golgo make wisecracks this way. For instance, when he's accused of eavesdropping on a meeting in the Oval Office of the U.S. White House during The Seventies:

 Golgo 13: Well, this is Washington... It happens all the time.

Everyone else in the room: ...

  • Description Porn — In The Professional, Rita describes the modified M16 rifle to Golgo in detail:

 Rita: Everything's exactly the way you wanted it. Check the piece out. Go ahead. Please.

Golgo 13: [Duke examines the rifle]

Rita: The trigger is an electronic push-button. I increased the bursts to 15 rounds per second. And the change in balance from the recoil is held below decimal. And check out the silencer kit.

Golgo 13: Rita, it's okay. I don't need to hear it. I trust you.

    • In the OVA, Mob Boss Don Roccini describes Queen Bee and his sexual experiences with her to his butler.
    • In the TV series, many episodes have this trope.
  • Distressed Dude
  • Dramatic Ellipsis — Duke is a master of this.
  • Dull Surprise — Golgo's famous lack of expression. Lampshaded in the story "Telepath":

 KGB official: I would like to have seen his expression when he missed... I bet it was the first expression he ever had!

  • Dumb Blonde — Doctor Z's daughter, Cindy.
  • Escapist Character
  • Evil Redhead — In the OVA, Queen Bee kills a person who squealed to the cops in cold blood, even though he has a family. Averted later when Queen Bee's past is revealed. Also, after being shot by Golgo, Queen Bee, A.K.A. Joanna Hardy, has requested before her death to Golgo to kill Thomas Waltham and Don Roccini that were responsible for manipulating her father.
  • Eye Scream — Snake takes out one of the three commandos by putting out his eyes via a weapon that uses razor sharp wires. Also, near the end of The Professional, after Duke finishes Gold off with his revolver, his artifical gold eye popped out afterwards.
  • Fiery Redhead — Queen Bee, A.K.A. Sonja, A.K.A. Joanna Hardy.
  • Four Is Death
  • Gainax Ending — In The Professional, Since after losing her husband Robert, and since haven't seen her daughter Emily, Laura Dawson is seen prostituting herself on the rainy streets since she was raped twice by Snake. She then sees Golgo 13. Shocked, she drew a gun against him in public. He then walks away. Whether Laura shot Golgo and missed, or that Golgo retaliated shooting back, or something else entirely is up to the viewer to decide.
  • Get Into Jail Free - This happens in one episode. Duke Togo allows himself to be arrested so he'll end up in the same ludicrously high-security prison as his target, a crook whose old companions are worried about spilling the beans on them. Needless to say, escaping a prison that makes The Alcatraz look like a cardboard box is no problem for Golgo 13!
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar — In the early days of the NES when Nintendo of America was heavily censoring all games for anything even slightly offensive, Golgo 13's game came over with all it's murder-y goodness intact, and even included several sex scenes! (Not literally shown on camera, but the dialogue makes clear what's about to happen, then the lights dim and Duke and the woman's silhouettes come together.)
    • As a matter of fact, you actually got to see the girls undress AND see boobs in the Japanese version. This makes the above trope even more amazing. After all, why not remove the scenes altogether?
    • Nintendo also forgot to remove a couple swastikas that clearly tied the "Drek" group to Nazis run by an (equally unedited) cyborg Hitler - facts mercilessly lampshaded in the Let's Play of Top Secret Episode.
    • They left in some pixel-based, almost abstract panty shots, too,
  • Good Scars, Evil Scars — In his first appearance, Duke Togo, aka Golgo 13, had no scars. Over the course of the series, he's collected a great deal of them on his body. They're covered by clothing much of the time. As for morality, you pay him, he does the job, no moral issues involved unless you double-cross him.
  • Gorn — In The Professional, Snake takes out three commandos in a really grotesque way.
    • In the OVA, Queen Bee disembowls a person attempting to attack her children.
  • Heroic Mime — Duke Togo in Golgo 13, who only talks in ellipses.
  • High-Pressure Blood — In The Professional, Snake uses the third commando's hook against him by sliding his back open with blood spraying out, causing the commando to scream. Also, when Duke investigates the phone in the safe, he shoots an old guy who also drew a gun, gets shot and blood sprays out of him causing him to die.
  • Historical In-Joke — See above.
  • Hitman with a Heart — subverted in most cases. He never has moral doubts about his assignments: you pay him and don't betray him, he'll do it.
  • Hookers and Blow — Golgo's target in San Francisco, Bernart Muller, is an ex-nazi who is partying with hookers in a penthouse sealed in bulletproof glass.
  • Ho Yay — Robert Hardy and Thomas Waltham.
  • Improbable Aiming Skills — Duke has shot a man in a building on the other side of a skyscraper from him. He's also killed another person sighting through a television.
    • In an episode of the recent anime, he manages to ricochet a shot off of the small wave created by someone playing in a pool to headshot someone in a nearby building...twice.
    • It should be noted that, while he has these in spades, he does not lean on them heavily, preferring more realistic shots. If he forgoes his modded M-16 during a mission for a specialized long-range rifle, you know he's going to use them, though he is capable of doing fantastic feats with his M-16.
    • In the second episode of the recent anime, the cops manage to get all the evidence they needed to incriminate him: they found him in the only hotel room the shot could be taken from, they found the rifle he used in the dust chute, they found the shell from the bullet fired, etc. For all purposes, he was caught. Then they did the math on the shot: 500 meters away, through a two-foot gap between buildings, through tempered bullet-proof glass, at sundown with the sun shining on the window he was to fire through, with the wind blowing across the shot requiring it to be off-center. The cops determined the shot to be ABSOLUTELY IMPOSSIBLE. They had to let him go. The head inspector even commented "To prove that he's guilty, you'd have to prove there's a monster amongst us with the skills of a god." YEAH.
      • The cops probably could have still made the conviction stick. They had the gun and could have matched the ballistics. If they could prove that it was physically possible for the gun to shoot a bullet that far, that evidence could sustain a conviction. The jury might not go for it, but it would probably merit a trial.
  • I Work Alone
  • Improbable Weapon User - Golgo doesn't rely on them, but he can use them when he needs to, like a gun designed for zero-recoil shooting in space or a special bullet-reflecting beltbuckle.
  • Indecisive Deconstruction - The Professional. Unlike most adaptations (or the original manga), they didn't even attempt to make Duke's actions somewhat justifiable. His contract on Leonard Dawson has the consequences one would expect, and the character himself is treated as something of a pathological case.
  • Intimate Healing
  • Invincible Hero — Golgo 13 never fails an assignment, or for that matter misses a shot. If he did, he'd lose his reputation as an assassin and there would be no series. Later chapters solve the problem by focusing more on the people who hire him and how their situations deteriorate to the point that they need to bring in a hitman. (Infamously, he doesn't appear in one story at all; the central character merely uses Golgo 13's reputation as a weapon.) The fact that the stories are standalone and bounce around time help in this regard. For completeness sake, there have been several occasions of him missing, at least once by weapons sabotage creating a misfire, and one complete miss caused by the target's allegedly psychic bodyguard.
    • You would think the writer would have him miss, ruining his reputation forcing him to rebuild it (like Boba Fett did after falling into the Sarlacc).
  • Invisible President — Because they have to sign off on the hiring, whenever the US government hires Golgo 13, the president in office at the time of the story's writing will make an appearance.
  • I Surrender, Suckers-- Duke will go to great lengths to complete a job. Such as getting arrested just to get past the layers of security a target put around himself.
  • Kill Sat — In "The Orbital Hit", the U.S. government has a network of these in orbit, with nuclear missiles.
  • Last-Minute Reprieve — Played with in the story "One Minute Past Midnight".
  • Let's Play
  • Live Action Adaptation — Two to date, the more famous (and later) one being The Kowloon Assignment - where he was played by Sonny Chiba.
  • Locked Room Mystery — "The Serizawa Family Murders".
  • Loud of War — In one story, the last of a series of tortures used on Duke Togo is Led Zeppelin's "Houses of the Holy" at high volume (the Written Sound Effect being "ZUN ZUN ZUN").
  • The Mafia — The story "Wiseguy" deconstructs the romanticized aspects of this trope.
  • Meaningful Name — The eponymous character's codename in Golgo 13 means something, most likely, but nobody's sure what. The most popular theory is that it's a call-out to Golgotha, the hill on which Christ was crucified, and the thirteenth disciple, Judas. Given that the series has a skeleton wearing a crown of thorns as its icon, this is probably a good guess.
    • In the first chapter, it's mentioned as a nickname given to him by fellow inmates in a West German work camp (his prison number was 1214, and the above explanation regarding Golgotha is given).
  • Moe Greene Special — Duke delivers a double to a spy satellite image analyst who tried to set him up to become a Boxed Crook, just for the Karmic Death value.
  • Mukokuseki - Very meta on this one. Golgo 13 is a worldly, adult-oriented manga sometimes incorporating world news events, where people will actually be drawn with something approaching recognizable ethnicity, especially the many portrayals of real people (Even Nelson Mandela needs Golgo, sometimes!). However, Golgo's own Mukokuseki good looks (along with his polyglot abilities) become one of his greatest assets for being undetected, and even the other characters are confused about what ethnicity he is. Even then, however, people tend to vaguely assume he might be Japanese.
  • Multiple Choice Past — Several of the stories in the series seem to be possible origins for Golgo; however, they always end on at least a note of ambiguity.
  • Never Suicide - A rather unusual inversion in the first animated film, in which the target's father, after the assassination, spends the rest of the film sending people to kill Duke - but it turns out that his son, unhappy with his family life and too squeamish to take his own life, hired Duke to kill him in the first place - suicide by contract killing.
  • New Powers as the Plot Demands — That language? He speaks it. That gun? Oh yeah, he can shoot it.
  • No Export for You — Quite an odd case, due the nature of the series, no matter in how many countries the manga will be licensed, it will always be, in a sense, incomplete. All known licensed prints of the manga follows the same rule of selecting some iconic missions Golgo has taken and release it in a few dozen Volumes, leaving aside more than a hundread original volumes in the process; although thanks to the episodic and self-contained story telling of the series, only completionist aficionados will feel bad about this.
  • No Smoking — The TV series. Like James Bond, Golgo 13 goes from a chain-smoker to a non-smoker with no explanation whatsoever.
  • Non-Idle Rich — Togo probably has more cash than anyone could estimate at this point, with some assignments worth millions. But with his constant work and traveling, it doesn't seem like that half the time.
  • Off with His Head — In The Professional, Duke finishes Silver off by putting an active grenade in his mouth.
  • One Bullet Left — After a brutal battle with Snake, the helicopters, and Gold/Silver, Duke finally meets Leonard Dawson, face to face. After expressing his final words to Duke, Leonard attempts to commit suicide, but Duke fires his revolver's last bullet, killing Leonard with a headshot.
  • "On the Next Episode of..." Catchphrase — "Do not stand behind him, if you value your life."
  • Our Presidents Are Different — Averted; Golgo's worked for the US government several times, and each time the then-current real-world president was (surprisingly accurately) drawn.
  • Overt Operative — Golgo 13 almost always uses some variant on "Duke Togo" as a cover identity. Which wouldn't apply except that Duke Togo is also the name he goes by in public. He has subverted the trope by using fairly different names, but he keeps coming back to Duke Togo.
    • But if he was caught, who would the government in question use when they needed people shot in the head?
    • The most common fan rationalization for this is that Golgo just doesn't care. People have tried to take him in before and it's never worked. He's untouchable and he knows it.
    • Notice how many of the guys who hire him are government personnel? The man is too valuable as a tool of death, to keep him in prison or get rid of him.
  • Perpetual Frowner — The title character of Golgo 13 fame is one of the trope's fathers.
  • Pretty in Mink — Cindy, the daughter of one of Golgo 13's targets(Dr. Z) wore a white fox coat in The Professional. And she's not wearing anything underneath on the top-half.
  • Pretty Little Headshots — Virtually Golgo 13's Calling Card.
  • Rape as Drama: Laura Dawson is raped twice by Snake by request of Leonard Dawson.
    • In the OAV, Queen Bee (Joanna Hardy) was raped by Thomas Waltham as a child.
  • Rape Discretion Shot — Used the first time Snake rapes Laura Dawson. A bit less discretion is used the second time.
  • Rated "M" for Manly
  • Rare Guns — generally averted; Golgo's favorite gun is an M-16, because it's easy to obtain, customize, and dispose of.
    • He does have access to specialized weapons, like underwater guns, that fit this trope, though.
  • Reflexive Response — Do not stand behind Duke when he's sitting if you value your life.
  • Revolvers Are Just Better — In The Professional, Golgo carries a BFG Revolver with him at times.
  • Rich Bitch — Cindy in The Professional.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge — Throughout the entire film of The Professional, to avenge his son's death, Leonard Dawson sends the CIA, FBI, U.S. Army, as well as Snake, Gold/Sliver and even his own granddaughter Emily along with the butler to plot out revenge against Golgo 13. They all failed. Thus Leonard commits suicide.
  • Say My Name — In The Professional, Cindy says his name out loud as Duke found out who Dr. Z 'really' is before killing his target:

 Cindy: Who is this?

Duke: You almost had me fooled.

Cindy: Duke?

Duke: I tested the phone in the safe. It's a fake. If I had more time, i'm sure I can locate the remote switch. You oughta get an oscar for that act you put on. Oh, and by the way, Cindy, I know who Dr. Z is: It's you.

Cindy: (hesitates)...Duke! Duuuuuuke!

  • Sedgwick Speech — The Live Action Adaptation of Golgo 13 (the second one, with Sonny Chiba as Duke Togo) shows a mook spying on Golgo with binoculars see him look their way. He turns to his partner and says, "Ah, who cares? It's over 300 yards!" Anyone familiar with the series will know how short that mook's lifespan is.
  • Sexy Discretion Shot — The imfamous health restoration method in Top Secret Agent and Mafat Conspracy for the NES in which you have sex with many female operatives to restore your health. Although it's implied, you can clearly see them 'doin it' in a far away shot of the building in a sillouette-esque image with the background in the window flashing to black.
  • Smoking Hot Sex — In The Professional, Golgo 13 smokes a cigarette after having sex with an unkonwn female redhead with a red ribbon.
  • Sniper Rifle — Duke Togo occasionally uses one to assassinate his targets in Golgo 13. However, since he usually operates from somewhat closer range, he more often uses an M-16.
  • Sniping Mission — The NES versions of Golgo 13 have incredibly easy sniping missions, especially in comparison to the rest of the game. Of course... Golgo 13 is very, very good at it.
  • Split Screen — Used more often in the 1983 anime movie, Queen Bee and the anime TV series.
  • Streamline Pictures — The Professional: Golgo 13 (1992) (later distributed by Urban Vision, with the Streamline dub kept)
  • Stuff Blowing Up — Lt. Bob Bragen has the National Guard blow up an entire church, which Golgo escaped from, despite being wounded in the left shoulder by the commandos.
  • Technician vs. Performer: Several Assassins Golgo meets consider themselves artists and some romanticize killing, while our protagonist just coldly executes his marks (and the other assassins).
  • The Maze — Anyone who remembers the first Golgo 13 game for the NES (based on the anime/manga of the same name) will also remember the horribly frustrating maze sequences scattered throughout the game, including one maze purposefully built to be unsolvable (supposedly a decoy within the context of the game.) This detracted so much from the game that the publisher actually included maps to the mazes in the manual in an effort to disarm the ire of most gamers unfortunate enough to play it.
  • The Only One Allowed to Defeat You — Variant: Golgo 13 makes a point of not allowing anyone else to kill his target when hired for an assassination. Not even themselves. When they die, it must be by his hand.
  • The Stoic
  • Swiss Bank Account — A Smug Snake villain figures out how to use the very existence of the assassin's Swiss bank accounts and the fantastic sum that must be in them to run an international scam.
  • Thirteen Is Unlucky — Well, unlucky for his targets.
  • Twist Ending — It's been revealed at the end of The Professional in voiceover, that Leonard Dawson's son, Robert, requested Golgo 13 to plan the hit on himself. This was during Leonards's suicide and long fall from the Pertrolneum bulding.

  Robert Dawson: "Father, please forgive me for having to leave my last message like this. I swear it will be my first and only opposition to you. Father, thank you for the enormous love you gave me for 29 years. I still remember my sixth birthday, and you baked the only cake you ever made me. It was delicious. I also remember my high school graduation where you cried the only tears you ever shed for me. It was very greatful. But thank you so much for you all your kindness to my wife Laura and my daughter Emily. Father, I know you have such terribly high hopes for me, and being incapable of fufilling those hopes, and having to push them away caused me terrible pain. Because you see, father, I couldn't have the courage to put an end my own life. So I decided to ask someone else to kill me. I believe that he will do a good job. To my great father, the emperor of Pertrolneum: Leonard Dawson. From your disobedient son, Robert."

  • Tyke Bomb — Goro Serizawa from "The Serizawa Family Murders", who may or may not have become Golgo 13.
    • In The Professional, Leonard Dawson gives his granddaughter a crash course in an attempt to ambush Duke.
  • Ubermensch
  • Villain Protagonist — Although generally whoever he's trying to kill (and often his employer) is even more evil.
  • Visible Silence — Possibly first introduced to the West by Golgo 13; Duke Togo/Golgo 13 is quite fond of this.
  • War for Fun and Profit — "A Fierce Southern Current" revolves around an arms merchant trying to start a war in the south Pacific, with the promise of the billions Golgo's earned over the years going to the winner. Duke beats him by immediately donating the money from the accounts supposedly up for grabs to the United Nations' nature conservation efforts, making it clear to all parties that he is refusing to be a player, then putting a bullet in the arms merchant's head for good measure.
  • Weapon of Choice - A modified M-16. M-16s are generic and easy to find, so he can drop it after a mission with no problem, whereas hauling around a giant, expensive sniper's rifle would make discreet escapes nearly impossible. Also, he is the lone wolf of lone wolves, so he lacks a spotter or permanent sidekick of any kind. No one is watching his back for him. Using an assault rifle like the M-16 gives him a weapon that is equally suited for self-defense if he is attacked during a mission.
    • Technology Marches On makes this less awesome than it once was. When Saito began the series, sniping with an M-16 made about as much sense as sniping with an Uzi (Assignment: Kowloon even has Duke's scope zip-tied to the carry handle). AR platform weapons are now common bases for sniper rifles, without losing their assault rifle functionality.
  • What Do You Mean Its Not Symbolic — The codename "Golgo 13" is apparently a reference to Golgotha, the hill where Jesus Christ was crucified, and Judas Iscariot, the 13th disciple. For bonus points, the Japanese logo for the series prominently features a skeleton wearing a crown of thorns...
  • Who Shot JFK? — While it wasn't Golgo, The Professional makes it clear that it was engineered by the FBI as part of an 'unusual request' by billionaire Leonard Dawson.