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In the not-too-distant future, power shortages and energy crises force humanity to take drastic measures. Hajiki Sanada grows up on a planet divided into class-oriented enclaves or "units," where all power is shut off in his town at a regular midnight curfew. While working part-time as a delivery boy for a courier service, he touches the contents of the package he is supposed to be ferrying around and finds himself bonding with a robot made out of a special material. This "GAD-made" robot can reconstitute matter for him, making it a combination of the magical cat of Doraemon and the fighting toys of Pokémon.

Despite such derivative beginnings, Gad Guard has an undeniable style, informed more by the noirish look of recent fan favorites, with stark allegories of class struggle in the contrast between the poor Night Town and the privileged Gold Town. It also struggles to hang onto its PG rating, thanks to vampish female characters at odds with the squat, cartoony character designs inspired by late Tezuka productions.

Its hustlers, street kids, and lowlifes are distinctly occidental-Gad Guard is another anime hymn to life in the exotic, inscrutable West, where people have different hair colors, big noses, and, so the animators believe, more adventurous lives.

In this age of painfully cheap productions, Gonzo Digimation clearly had a little more money than usual from Fuji TV for this one. They pull out all the available stops to keep the show interesting, with impressive CG flashiness used on marble floors, lighting effects, and saturated colors. The crew also works harder than average, with nice little touches like a cat disturbing birds in the background, or the detailed clutter of the Sanada family kitchen. The music is a self-consciously jazzy respray of Cowboy Bebop, courtesy of Gunbuster-composer Kohei Tanaka. The plot is Brain Powered wearing a retro cloak, via The Big O and a touch of Dark City. In other words, it's a shameless collection of well-worn clichés, but creatively assembled and entertainingly presented. However, the initial run of 19 episodes on Fuji TV was bulked out with seven extras to complete the full run on AT-X; a piecemeal form of assembly that often results in episodes that merely seem to be marking time.

Series Credits
Person Name Episode Count
Hiroshi Nishikiori
1

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Original US Poster Art

General Information Edit
Name Gad Guard
Name: ガドガード
Romaji: Gado Gādo
Publisher Gonzo
Start Year 2003
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