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GATCHAMAN CROWDS #1 - - Special Review

I bet the long-time GATCHAMAN fans were just livid over this...

SHOGUN’S NOTE: The summer season is in swing, at last! I’ll be doing my best to watch most, if not all, of the new simulcasting pilots. As such, regular shows like ATTACK ON TITAN, ONE PIECE and, of course, DBZ will be getting a brief break in coverage to make room. Stay tuned, and don’t panic - - their eventual catch-ups will be spectacular!

Oooh boy. I bet the long-time GATCHAMAN fans were just livid over this...

Part of the fun of analyzing all these disparate, long-running adventure franchises is that you start to notice the stages of psychological development, as it were, that they inevitability run through. There are the earnest early years, then the darker and rebellious period, then the high-minded deconstruction, then the stubborn return to basics, and so on. Somewhere in all of that, you usually have a self-aware and self-ridiculing take that makes a radical departure from the franchise’s usual tone and giggles at all the kitschy parts of its mythos.

Now, I only have a general understanding of GATCHAMAN, but even with that deepest context, I can just smell this pilot taking such a departure. This isn’t a fresh start. It introduces its characters and world in a somewhat cluttered way, putting the cart before the horse in a way that only ever happens when creators presume their audience knows the gist already . Then there are things like the panda bear mentor and the magical smart-moleskins (or whatever they are) which seem like re-purposed props in a GATCHAMAN parody. I’d also question why Tatsunoko would approve of such a whimsical take on their characters that stands in clashing contrast with the more serious live-action update that they’re about to put out… but perhaps such a question is fundamentally against anime’s ethos.

On the plus side, the animation in this show is unusually stylish and crisp (I.E. the extra production money shows). I was also tickled by the basic gag of this secret superheroic society reluctantly recruiting this manic pixie with such an outrageously blithe disregard for their stoic rules of decorum. And good or bad, it is one of the more intriguing pilots I’ve seen this season. I actually am curious how badly this skeleton crew is going to work now that we’ve gotten through the (somewhat obfuscated) set-up.

What say you?

Watch this episode, "Avant-garde” here and decide for yourself.

metalsnakezeroon July 23, 2013 at 8:53 a.m.

As someone who have seen GATCHAMAN before, it a bit bewildering to see it in a different tone, atmosphere, and style. And yet it was a fun show and it interesting to see where it goes. Tatsunoko modern shows of their classics have a lot more interesting concepts to them than they were years ago.

sickVisionz moderator on July 23, 2013 at 1:49 p.m.
So this is a goofy show with good art and animation? I think I'll check it out now.
YotaruVegetaon July 23, 2013 at 3:06 p.m.

"Whimsical" That's one word for it.

There's genki done right

and then there's Gatchaman Crowds

Marshal Victoryon July 23, 2013 at 10:29 p.m.

Figured Tom Pinchuk would like the plot pacing of this show at least .Was 70% sure even.Will go so far as guess good chance again would like the second show as well.Plot thickens as they say.

Art wise it can be a extreme design in a sceen to very simple servicable animation.Some have compaired it to a cluttered Tiger & Bunny but i dont see that other than they have power armor looking suits an not spandex.

It mixs the fast pace with comedy an action .One of the main characters is hated by older fans of the franchise because shes whimsical an has a scissors fetish an a notbook fetish.Shes beyond perky an for some unbleviable .. in a show about aliens protecting the earth..... let that sink in for a moment.

Any way i like the show .Been a great surprise in a sea of "not for me" from this seasons offers.Crisp fast plot , good to amazing design an animation.I feel tho show gona sucker punch us an get darker as it goes.Not sure how good this will get but it has the building blocks for a good/great show.Definatly worth a look for super hero fans or those who like shows that go a little off the beatn path.

@YotaruVegeta: i dug Robotics;Notes but its about as opisite to Gatchaman Crowds in pace as can be .The female lead in Gatchaman Crowds may be whimsical to the point of mania.You could say shes crazy nice as a discription easy enuff .Akiho Senomiya could be whimsical sure but she was driven to finish the robot.This other girl is just driven to be whimsical almost hippy like view of the world.

takashichea moderator is online on July 25, 2013 at 6:28 a.m.


Didn't know you're a fan of Robotics;Notes. Where were you in the Robotics;Notes discussion? Just kidding. It's good to see more fans of the show in the community.

@Marshal Victory:

I took your recommendation and try the show. I got hooked on it. Now that YotaruVegeta had mentioned it, Hajime does remind me of Akiho. I find Hajime is more ditzy than Akiho. Planner fetish? That's a new one. It's more clean than bicep and tricep fetish.

My first impressions of this series was that Power Rangers and Madoka had a baby. You got that weird pencil shading in the eyes, the weird stripe pattern in the hair, the abstract enemies, and your colorful heroes. I love the music especially during the transformation. The drum beat is pretty catchy.

Marshal Victoryon July 25, 2013 at 9:07 a.m.

@takashichea: Yeah this show gave me a nice surprise.Still belive it will progress to a darker tone.Its to well designed to not have a decent story.It looks like a work of live in the design an animation.Sure its a odd style but it can be impressive.An secodn episode their are things to discuss .

YotaruVegetaon July 26, 2013 at 3:09 a.m.

@Marshal Victory: Yes, I know that their paces are different. That's why I say that Robotics;Notes is genki done right. The girl in Gatchaman Crowds is irritating and scatter-brained.

macgetmalledon July 29, 2013 at 5:24 a.m.
Kind of in love with this show. Funny and Heartfelt. A weird take on the Gathaman thing though.

Dig Deeper into Gatchaman Crowds

Gatchaman Crowds is an adaptation of the Gatchaman franchise, It's directed by Kenji Nakamura and broadcasted by NTV.

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