Echo|Fox (echofox@wingzero.net)
Fri, 30 Jun 2000 09:43:46 -0600 (MDT)


Ahhh the list is so quiet today =)
Here's my rambling on some other mecha shows I've seen (not neccesarily
shows where mecha is the focus, but they at least play a part in the
story). Hopefully it will spark some conversation, and maybe convince
someone to see a show they otherwise wouldn't. Feel free to comment and
add your own.

These are in no apparent order, just the order that I thought of them.

Vision of Escaflowne - A true modern classic. It should be considererd
essential viewing for any anime fan. The mecha aren't the focus of the
story, but they do play an integral part. I really like the so called
"Steam-punk" design (That being high technology reproduced with
steam-engine era tech), and even if there's a little "magic" involved, its
well done. Also, let's not forget the Yoko Kanno factor. This show has
some of her best songs, Dance of Curse is one of my favorites.

Daigaurd - Fairly nifty show. Finally got a chance to see the first
episode a little while ago. I still don't fully understand everything, but
basically aliens come to earth and humanity is defenceless, blah blah
blah. Wev'e all been there before. So they build a giant robot but don't
actually end up using it for some reason. Flash to the future and the
robot is now part of a promotions team that endorses products and such.
The aliens return and some of the staff go out and pilot in it ... of
course it doesn't work so well, since there are no mystery metals that
solve the weight problem and such. Plus its entirely unarmed =) An
interesting take on 70's style giant robots, and one I look forward to
seeing more of.

Martian Successor Nadesico - Another must see. This show has something to
appeal to everyone. I remember reading somewhere that it was voted
favorite anime series of all time in Japan last year. There are a lot of
silly shows, and shows that don't take themselves seriously, but I think
this has done it far better than any other. Take your typical space
battleship with mecha fighting against an overwheming enemy, and stir in a
healthy dose of comedy. Plus Gekiganger is the best anime within an anime
ever .... LET'S GEKIGA-IN!

Gasaraki - I got to see the first two eps of this at Otaku No Festival a
few weeks ago. Decidedly odd show with a heavy dose of mysticism, but the
'tech is pretty cool. The mecha has a very realistic feel to them .. about
as plausible as any giant robots I've ever seen =) Hard to say whether I
really like it or not, it's definately going to take 5 or 6 episodes to
decide.

Brain Powered - This is probably the best new show I've seen in a long
time. After watching the first two episodes, the show was definately
unique and oddly itriguing. After seeing 6 episodes, I'm getting into the
story and starting to have an appreciation fo the characters. After
hearing about Tomino's complains of Gundam focusing too much on the mecha,
and not enough on the characters, I can really see that reflected here.
Even though the mecha in the show was designed by the guy who did 5 Star
Stories (Nagano .. aurgh .. cant remember the name), they almost seem
intentionally bland and un-model kit worthy. Other than Gundam, of all the
series' I'm in the progress of watching, this is the one I most look
forward to finishing. Oh, and Yoko Kanno. Yoko Kanno == goodness.

Evangelion - Well, I might as well mention this one. I really didn't like
it. Really, really didn't liek it. That's just me though =) I know lots of
people who realy got into it, but it just wasn't for me. I can only stand
so much angst, and I can honestly say this was the first series I watched
where I honestly _despised_ all of the characters. Except for Pen-Pen
perhaps, there wasn't a single character I liked. Tack on mecha design I
didn't like, a plot that cratered near the end ... ugg. Not my cup of tea
=) This ain't Eva bashing, since I know some of you love it, I just .. err
.. hated it =)

Sakura Taisen - Not really a mecha show at all, other than the fact that
it has mech's in it. Again, a neat Steam Punk thing going on, lots of
girls battling evil, yadda yadda. The OVA was inconsistent but reasonably
enjoyable. As for the TV series, it looks to disregard the events of
the OVA and too many of the characters seem to have had the bitch factor
raised through the raw japanese episodes I've seen...

Patlabor - I really enjoyed the TV series, even if I've only seen about a
third of it. How many episodes are there again? 60 or something? A
generally fun show, with nice mecha designs, likable characters, and a
decent if inconsistently good plot. The OVA's were better, with a touch
better animation and some great stories. The movies I didn't like in the
slightest. Story was far too slow and dragged on.

Bubblegum Crisis and Bubblegum Crisis 2040 - BGC is one of my alltime
favorites, and the first anime I bought on DVD. Having watched it coming
off of Robotech it influenced my greatly. I love the music, love the
characters, and it had some great stories. As I've mentioned before, I
haven't warmed up to BGC2040 yet, but I may give it another go in the near
future since I'm running out of other things to watch =) For those who
don't know, its girls in power armor fighting semi-biological robots
called Boomers.

Macross 7 - I really wanted to like this show. It had a lot going for it,
neat transforming mecha, it had Max and Miriya, I grew up watching
Robotech, it had Max and Miriya, and did I mention the nifty transforming
mecha? However ... ugg... Bassara. He has the distinct honor of being the
only character other than Shinji from Eva that I wanted to repeatedly kick
in the head. If they'd JUST toned down the influence of music a little bit
it would have been infinitely better ... Macross did it right, in small
doses Minmei wasn't that bad, but its like massive overload. Still, I did
sit through all 49 episdoes just so I could see Max and Miriya flying
together again at the end. Word of advice though. DO NOT watch the
Dynamite 7 OVA. This is a warning to you all. I'll put it bluntly: Giant.
Space. Whales. That's the focus of the plot.

Hrrm ... I'm sure I've seen more, but thats all I can think of now, so go
forth and comment =)

---
Nicholas "Echo|Fox" Paufler
http://www.wingzero.net - Home of the High Quality Gundam Image Archive
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