Alternative titles: G-Reco
Anime Original by Sunrise
Long after the UC era, Bellri Zenam is a member of the Capital Guard in charge of protecting an orbital elevator known as the Capital Tower. When space pirates attack the elevator, Bellri runs into an advanced mobile suit known as the G-Self, piloted by a female space pirate. Managing to capture the suit, the Capital Guard take both the G-Self and its pilot into custody. However, when the space pirates return to reclaim them, things are not as they appear…
Gee’s verdict: A Spectacle
It was wise to release the first two episodes of G-Reco at the same time. G-Reco is quite possibly one of the weirdest mecha anime I have ever watched, but giving me two episodes allowed me to take it in and get accustomed to G-Reco’s brand of surreal strangeness. Everything about it makes me feel like I’m watching an anime from a different time period. Fitting considering this is Yoshiyuki Tomino’s first return to Gundam since 1999, there are a lot of his notable quirks and directorial decisions that can be seen in G-Reco. The rapid camera cuts, the characterization of the cast, and even the aesthetic choices, make G-Reco seem like a slightly less crazy Turn A Gundam.
Additionally, Ippei Gyoubu’s unconventional mecha designs are a delight to look at. The G-Self is a great spin on the classic Gundam. Meanwhile, the Recten and the Grimoire are distinctly unique takes on the requisite grunt mecha. They do a great job of distinguishing G-Reco from its roots and giving the show some interesting flair. Despite the limited animation shown in both episodes, the nice presentation and attractive aesthetic go far in making G-Reco enjoyable to watch.
It is a shame that at least so far, the characters don’t share the same degree of care. The best I can say for Bellri is that he isn’t the worst Gundam protagonist I’ve ever seen. And I suppose he at least has the enthusiasm to happily jump into the giant robot instead of crying or whining about it. I had hoped Aida was going to be an effective deuteragonist but so far, her primary traits are being a girl and crying a lot. Considering Tomino has written decent female characters before, it’s a bit of a shame that we should start off on the wrong foot.
And yet despite its issues and inherent strangeness, I can’t take my eyes away. While I was undoubtedly laughing at G-Reco as much as with it, it was legitimately entertaining and well put together. Compared to the mecha anime that’s been airing in 2014, somehow, G-Reco ends up feeling refreshing despite how much it harkens to mecha anime of a bygone era. If nothing else, the sheer audacity of its devotion to being so damn weird is enough to keep me along for the ride.
Iro’s verdict: Rainbow Robots
As as person whose mecha experience includes several super robot shows and only one Gundam ever, I didn’t know what to think of G-Reco. It felt like something from the 90s or early 00s, with a bunch of very smiley character designs and peppy music creating levity that may not have been intentional. I was laughing almost the entire way through both of the premiere episodes, and I’m not entirely sure if I was supposed to be or not. This show takes place in a world where it’s acceptable for the military to let cadets do pilot training in a high-tech mobile suit they appropriated from a space pirate minutes ago, and where cheerleaders are allowed to burst into a lecture to dance for their boyfriends. It was plain baffling to watch, and that means I at least want to keep watching if only to find out what the flipping fuck is going on.
Marlin’s verdict: I’m probably the only nerd who noticed that capybara.
This show was absolutely bizarre to watch. Everything kind of develops at a breakneck pace. It keeps hopping from scene to scene with nary a moment spent to let us catch our breath. That said I’d take that any day of the week over horrible time wasting intros like Captain Earth. If I had any problem it’s that for being in what I assume to be wartime, this is one of the laxest armies I’ve ever seen, and I’ve watched SoRaNoWoTo. One would think there’s some kind of chain of command to be followed when letting your brash savant pilot go into an enemy’s commandeered robot. One would also think immobilizing your prisoners is like capture 101. The characters also seemed as old as this show felt, with the plucky ace pilot and the weepy love interest. If there was anything that I’d say I completely enjoyed was that the soundtrack is absolutely amazing, with some fantastic orchestration given that old fashioned flair to.
The show does have an unfortunate tendency to be absolutely disjointed, though. here’s an especially confusing scene where our hero and his childhood friend or whatever she is to the plot are sneaking into the prison where the main girl is, but then seem to forget they were trying to sneak around and just yell at the people they were hiding from to take cover. The people they were trying to sneak around then just talk confusedly and then go away, which begs the question of why they had to hide in the first place. Then the MC runs straight into a wall so hard he flies backwards into the wall behind him, and then goes tumbling down a flight of stairs. Also, Capybara. This is a weird show.