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Watch & Learn: Gurren Lagann #3

If you can't connect 'em, drill 'em together.

   The first mecha to successfully accessorize?
 The first mecha to successfully accessorize?

I’ve mentioned before that GURREN LAGANN sounds Malay to me, so my mind’s already on that track.  Three episodes in, now, and I can’t help but feel a Southeast Asian vibe in everything from this show’s warm color scheme to its fisheye- lens frames to its outfits (especially Kamina's shades.) Everybody seems like they’re dressed for humidity, not just desert heat. Anybody else getting this vibe? I lived in Singapore for a decade, so maybe I’m predisposed to make associations like this. Either way, I still want to reach for a cup of cold Boba Tea when I’m watching this.

Huh… I like how GURREN LAGANN forms so inelegantly. That’s one of the best gags so far.   Instead of some graceful ballet of interlocking parts, you’ve got Kamina jamming Simon’s gunman into the top of his, which gives me serious déjà vu. See, that was the same way I’d form Megazords out of my POWER RANGERS toys when I wouldn’t bother reading the instructions. If the parts aren’t going to lock into place, than you jam 'em together! The bigger gag is that it shouldn’t work - - these knuckleheads shouldn't win - - but, to everybody's bafflement, they prevail so triumphantly against the blond CASTLEVANIA-looking dude.

Speaking of the blond CASTLEVANIA-looking dude... if he isn’t human, then just what is he supposed to be? A cat-man? I thought it was funny that everybody kept ragging on Simon for being a coward, yet Kamina kept getting his ass handed to him  by this guy (and in graceful slo-mo, no less!) And I get the feeling that the two bros will have to be less worried about beastmen attacks than aggressive passes from their mechanic on their desert journey. And things are only just getting started, now...

Watch this episode "Who Do You Think You Are, Having Two Faces!?" below and read my comments about the previous episode here. 

 
    

-- Tom Pinchuk is the writer of UNIMAGINABLE for Arcana Studios and HYBRID BASTARDS! for Archaia. HYBRID BASTARDS! is available  here and UNIMAGINABLE is available here for pre-order on Amazon.com.  

Qwertykeyboardon July 11, 2010 at 11:28 p.m.
Viral is suppose  to be a cat/shark-man I think.
FoxxFireArt moderator on July 12, 2010 at 4:25 a.m.
I've never been to Asia. So, I can't speak to how the clothes appear. Farthest East I've ever been was Washington DC. Went to two Smithsonian Museums.
 
One thing that I never quite got out of this episode. Why is it that Yoko seems soooo deeply interested in Gurren and Lagann combining? The hands on her face and an almost lustful look in her eyes.
Viral's line when it didn't work was pretty funny in the Japanese version. The delivery was great. I haven't seen it in English.
 
I like how the Gurren and the Lagann do combine when it finally works. It still doesn't come together perfectly. The way it just somehow drills into the Gurren, but still connects.
kashif1on July 12, 2010 at 8:16 a.m.
viral is a cat boy,
Catolfon July 12, 2010 at 8:23 a.m.
@kashif1 said:
" viral is a cat boy,
"


 
But Viral is a Cat/Shark I think. But he's beastly, Beastly I tell you! XD
MercuryCrusaderon July 12, 2010 at 9:10 a.m.
@FoxxFireArt said:
"Why is it that Yoko seems soooo deeply interested in Gurren and Lagann combining? The hands on her face and an almost lustful look in her eyes. "
 
It is a joke of sexual innuendo proportions.
OnlyWonderBoyon July 12, 2010 at 11:31 a.m.
This was the first episode that sold me on the show. The first two were okay, but I just didn't get into it right away.  This episode had the first example of rules just being thrown out the window. There's no way that sticking one robot on top of another like that should cause them to combine, but that's what made it all the more awesome. I stuck with the show and from there it only gets even more crazy.
sotyfan16on July 12, 2010 at 12:09 p.m.

Ah yes, the awesome-yet-stupid idea of combining Gurren and Lagann. Reasons? Oh just to have a taller mech and two faces. When it comes ot crazy Kamina and Simon take the cake but somehow eat it, too. I think the glasses are slick and they aren't just for show. You have to laugh at and enjoy the quotes of this anime as well. When you have lines like, "That's how Team Gurren rolls.", "Just who the hell do you think I am?!", and "Manly combining!", Gurren Lagann borders on the absurd. But this absurdity drives the entire anime and makes people think either the show is stupid or epic. My vote is epic.

zaldaron July 12, 2010 at 1:08 p.m.
@MercuryCrusader said:
" @FoxxFireArt said:
"Why is it that Yoko seems soooo deeply interested in Gurren and Lagann combining? The hands on her face and an almost lustful look in her eyes. "
 It is a joke of sexual innuendo proportions. "
yup yup!  This is where the show got ridiculous in the extreme (and I mean extreme).  Like eva it really is making fun of some of the genre touchstones, here we get thundercats voltron or any other combining show but like you said it isn't the ballet we are all used to..the sexual stuff is funny but I really lost interest in it here just to ridiculous for me.  I suppose I will keep watching it since you all are but not really my taste in shows.  Eva is much better...
sotyfan16on July 12, 2010 at 1:53 p.m.
@zaldar:
Oh the sexual innuendo is hardly there. There is some but it's nothing to fret about to discourage you from watching this show. Also, you can't (completely) compare Gurren Lagann to Evangelion. Yes you have the connection of how the power within oneself is important and the super mechs that can run out of power and the main protagonist coming to terms with his responsibilities but not much beyond that. These anime are by and large quite different. For example: Evangelion is serious and half the time you have to be a basket-case to understand it, while Gurren Lagann is semi-serious but light-hearted and fun without the cloak-and-dagger.
zaldaron July 13, 2010 at 1:41 a.m.
I don't think you have to be a basket case to understand eva but I do have more mental issues in my past and family (bi polar grandmother alcoholic sister) than some so that may help.  *shrug*.  For me the sexual innuendo is definitly subtle (VERY subtle for anime actually) but definitly there.  I mean you have the mechanic the combining with a drill leading to a new and better machine (man woman...together better) and the quote in the first episode of "It just kind of popped out".
 
For comparisons I was thinking more along the lines of how they each play with the conventions of the mecha genre.  Eva in a much more serious way true but they both play with them with a wink and a node to the audience.  The combining here is a good example very much not the way it it is usually done in mecha shows.  I watched enough of it to know it isn't my favorite type of show (like eva which I love), stopped about when the kids showed up..I guess that would be episode 6 or seven not sure.
zaldaron July 13, 2010 at 8:23 p.m.
hey no post today?  WE MISS YOU COME BACK TO US!

Dig Deeper into Gurren Lagann

In a world driven underground by the Spiral King, young Simon discovers the giant mech Gurren Lagann alongside his older friend Kamina. Together, alongside a group of rag-tag mech pilots, Simon and Kamina fight to defend their planet and their universe.

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