So a small decision by me, I’ve been watching Armored Trooper VOTOMS as Hi-Dive has been releasing it, so I want to talk about it. This won’t change anything else besides me adding another series that you will probably ignore. It’s from 1982 so I doubt many people would be interested in it, but this is my blog. I get to decide what I want to do with my posts. Also, all the other shows had decent and above episodes as well. I don’t have much to complain about.
Gundam Build Divers: Episode 17
Can I call something a filler episode if it’s a series that is centered around just playing a game? Maybe this counts because only part of the cast where the focus of this week’s plot? Whatever the semantics are, this was yet another fun episode. This week, Yuki and Doji, the younger brother of some one who wants to fight Riku, enter a special challenge to train and improve themselves because they don’t feel like they are adding to their groups experience. Sarah, the data form of unknown origin, goes along too. Doji and Yuki weren’t interesting in helping each other at first, but as the challenges become more puzzling for one, the other jumped into help. They became decent friends that way too. The biggest highlight of the episode was the last part of the challenge. Doji and Yuki fought mirror versions of themselves, but Sarah had a mirror version of herself either. She touched it, then mirror Sarah connected with the mirror mechs which caused everything to fuse together. Doji and Yuki didn’t even question this fact as they fought the monster. At least the server guy knows something is going on. It’s been 17 episodes, and nobody has questioned Sarah’s existence. Oh well, at least the episode was fun.
Space Battleship Yamato 2202: Episode 13
How is this show so good? How is possible to characterize a race that isn’t supposed to have emotions? I suppose that showing that they try to purge emotions but find that they can’t in the most pivotable and/or final moments in their lives is the trick? I don’t know. I write all of this because this episode was simple but powerful from an emotional stand point. The Yamato breaks into the core of Terezart where Tereza is by pushing through rock walls and firing the Wave Motion Canon at the Gatlantist fleet. That’s the plot. The emotion comes from getting to know the leader of the Gatlantist fleet educating his younger son AND the fact that the Yamato crew is firing the Wave Motion Canon for killing for attack. The entire bridge crew takes the weight from firing the Yamato’s wave motion canon at the enemy to survive. It’s one of the sincerest moments out of many of sincere moments from this Yamato series. I say this, but it leads yet another sincere moment with the older clone commander hugging and covering the younger clone while crying before they die. The space and spectacle are one thing, but having all that combined with some pure, unfiltered emotion is what sells this show to me. We don’t deserve Yamato 2202, guys. It’s too good.
Some things I want to cover very quickly here. I was wrong about the Salares on the Yamato was merely knocked out and not killed. That’s my fault guys. I’m sorry. The second thing I want to say that it’s very clear the visuals of 2202 are not going to get anywhere near 2199’s level of spectacle until the larger, more important episodes. While I have been loving the visuals from this episode especially since we had a fighter jumping further in the comet’s core with a whole bunch of marine mechs on it and the wave motion canon looked awesome as always, but the visuals of missiles hitting the Yamato and the Yamato’s point defense turrets just had red lights emitting from the tips were low effort compared to what they’ve done before. Still, no complaints here. Yamato’s story and characters are working for me and the visuals are good enough to carry all of that. That’s all that needs to be said. Thank you for indulging in my fanboying.
Planet With: Episode 5
If there is a show that challenges 2202 from a space and mech front, it’s this show. This episode did a lot of work in a short amount of time again. We see where our human villain comes from (he landed on Earth as a baby and was taken in by his parents), his adopted dad’s back story of missing his wife and wanting to support his son as much as he can, what losing against Nebula’s weapon does (Nezuya lost against the floating mass and lost his ambitions), our not so angsty protagonist, Souya Kuroi, defeats the second part of the other Nebula’s weapon, and the evil Nebula’s boss takes over the human villain’s plot. The whole episode goes into a double cliff hanger in the middle of mech jousting match and I don’t know who I want to win. The best part of all of this happening? It feels natural. The director of this show knows how to go from one thing to another with natural flow. None of these scenes last too long, they get what message they want across, and somehow, they get all the development and emotion from those scenes as they could get. They all feel like an early Gundam 00 episode. The direction behind Planet With is amazing. Maybe the CG behind the show isn’t that great, but the choreography and sound design behind each of the action scenes more than make up for that aspect. If the mechs were in 2D, this show would be picture perfect.
Armored Trooper VOTOMS: Episode 4-6
The pace of older series is so strange to me. A lot of things happen throughout the show, but not all of it has value towards the plot. To go over the first free episodes in a short amount of time: in a universe with a war that has gone on for over one hundred years, our protagonist Chirico Chiyo just joined a Votoms unit that’s mission was attacking a friendly base for some reason. Nobody ever tells Chirico why because they tell him to go back to the ship, but he sticks around. Despite his team’s efforts, Chirico is the one who finds it first and it’s an android girl in a box. The team and its ship get rid of Chirico, he gets interrogated by his own side, Chirico escapes, and then he ends in a bad city named Uoodo. The next three episodes are Chirico developing the world by him getting captured in a mine, him escaping the mine, then he meets a fat trader who is interested in Chirico for some reason. He does meet up with a Scope-Dog mech, fix it up, and fight the gang that captured him though. Scope dogs are awesome.
Just like episodes 1-3, episodes 4-6 involved Chirico getting captured and escaping again. There is more action though. We get to see Scope Dogs of two different colors fighting against Chirico in his classic green one. We also see that the city of Uoodo is being run by the ship Chirico was recruited for in the first episode. Other then that, Chirico was captured by the police after a match, then his three best friends (the fat trader, a street rate girl that won’t leave, and the cool black guy) get Chirico out of jail because they all want to recruit Chirico for VOTOM fights. Chirico never signs a contract to be owned by any of those three people, but he does find the box girl he fell in love with in the first episode after kidnapping the chief of police. That lead to a big gun fight. All of this ends with the gang of three meeting up with Chirico and the four of them escaping on a police helicopter and heading back to Uoodo.
There are some fun things happening in this show and I do like it a lot, but I can’t help but think that this show is a little slow plot wise. I do realize that the action happens all the time and everything happens quickly, but it seems like everything plot important happens in only half of the show’s run time. Everything else is just world development and I think that is ok I guess. If this was a modern show, these six episodes would be squished down to two or three episodes. There would be some world development and filler, but it wouldn’t be as prevalent. I can’t wait until I watch more next Saturday. I want to see how our silent protagonist acts now that he has found the android that he originally fell in love with and has a crew that supports him. There are some good mystery plots going on in this show and a fun core cast that bounce off each other well. For a show from 1982, the visuals are spectacular. Though, I only have SDF Macross and Go Shogun to use as a comparison. Definitely looking forward to more next week.
The new rule that I am adding for this, because I can that I am going to write about whatever mech content I watch the week before this post is due. I’m trying to come up with ways to change up my content and this is how I want to do it. This means that Votoms will be making an appearance in this post for a while and I will be writing about Gundam Narrative when it appears in November. Maybe this will make this post be a little busier than I originally planned, but this is a work in progress. I’m sure I’ll figure out how to create a natural flow in time.