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Gatchaman (ガッチャマン?) is a three-part original video animation (OVA) based on the popular 1970s anime Gatchaman. It was released in Japan and the United States during the mid-1990s. This version of Gatchaman is set in the year 2066 where the evil leader of the nation of Hontwall is threatening to take over the planet. Scientists from the International Science Organization are disappearing and only five teenage heroes, the Science Ninja team, can stop the disaster.[2]

Plot

# Title Original Airdate
1 The Dragon King
"Gatchaman Vs. Turtle King" (ガッチャマン VS タートルキング)
October 1, 1994 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
An enormous dragon-shaped warship decimates a city with plasma beams and giant robotic arms. Its target is the Mantel Plan, a network unifying the world's energy resources. As the sinister ship heads for its next target a team of specialists rise to the rescue: the Gatchaman. Piloting their ship, the Phoenix, the Gatchaman launch a counterattack. Once inside the enemy ship they come face to face with the Galactor's entire army of assassins.[3]
2 The Red Specter
"Secret Red Impulse" (謎のレッドインパルス)
January 1, 1995 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
The Gatchaman are in trouble and receive help from a mysterious group known as Red Impulse. While cruising near a strange island a submarine is vaporized by a large blast. Summoned to avenge the attack the Gatchaman Group comes upon the secret undersea headquarters of the alien Galactor. In a fierce air and undersea battle the Gatchaman struggle against the Galactor's Jupiter Death Brigade and the evil Black Bird Battalion. Battered by combat, the Gatchaman appear to be on the brink of defeat when, out of the sky, a new force appears led by a mysterious warrior in red.
3 The Final Countdown
"Final Count 0002" (ファイナルカウント0002)
April 1, 1995 {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
The Gatchaman have to confront Berg Katse in a final battle to save the earth. The huge mechanical devices installed at each of the Galactor's bases are infiltrating the Earth's interior, disrupting weather patterns and transforming the Earth's landscape into an environment hostile to the human race. In the midst of these disasters Joe is beginning to regain his childhood memories and must deal with the realization that he may be descended from the blood of his enemies. Joe decides to use his knowledge of the Galactor society to help save the human race. Joe single-handedly infiltrates the Galactor headquarters and manages to transmit its coordinates to the Gatchaman moments before he is captured by Solaris and his henchman.

Meanwhile the Gatchaman group teams up with Red Impulse to attack the Galactor's home base – it's a brutal fight to the death in which both the Gatchaman and the Red Impulse will pay the ultimate price.

Characters

The re-naming of the various characters and terms in Gatchaman OVA are highlighted and correspond to their Gatchaman equivalents.

Gatchaman Battle of the Planets G-Force Eagle Riders OVA (Dub) Rank Bird Uniform Weapon Mecha Japanese seiyū Voice actor (BOTP) Voice actor (G-Force) Voice actor (OVA Dub) Voice actor (Eagle Riders) Voice actor (ADV Dub)
Ken Washio Mark Ace Goodheart Hunter Harris Ken the Eagle G1 Eagle Razor boomerang Airplane Katsuji Mori Casey Kasem Sam Fontana Eddie Frierson Richard Cansino Leraldo Anzaldua
Joe Asakura Jason Dirk Daring Joe Thax Joe the Condor G2 Condor Pistol Race Car Isao Sasaki Ronnie Schell Cam Clarke Richard Cansino Bryan Cranston Brian Jepson
Jun Princess Agatha June ("Aggie") Kelly Jennar June the Swan G3 Swan Yo-yo Motorcycle Kazuko Sugiyama Janet Waldo Barbara Goodson Lara Cody Heidi Noelle Lenhart Kim Prause
Jinpei Keyop Pee Wee Mickey Dugan Jimmy the Falcon G4 Swallow Bolo Dune Buggy Yoku Shioya Alan Young Barbara Goodson Mona Marshall Luci Christian
Ryu Nakanishi Tiny Harper Hoot Owl ("Hooty") Ollie Keeawani Rocky the Owl G5 Owl Pistol God Phoenix Shingo Kanemoto Alan Dinehart Jan Rabson/Gregg Berger Richard Epcar Paul Schrier Victor Carsrud

Other character variations across different versions

Gatchaman Battle of the Planets G-Force Eagle Riders OVA (Dub)
Dr. Kozaburo Nambu Chief Anderson Dr. Benjamin Brighthead Dr. Thaddeus KeaneDr. Kozaburo Nambu
ISO Director Anderson President Kane Anderson/Cmdr. Todd (some episodes) Anderson Director Anderson
Red Impulse /
Kentaro Washio
Col. Cronos Red Impulse /
Mr. Goodheart
Harley Harris Red Spectre
Berg Katse Zoltar Galactor Lukan Solaris
Sosai (Leader) X O Luminous One /
The Great Spirit
Computor Cybercom Lord Zortek
Galactor Planet Spectra Planet Galactor Vorak Galactor
Gel Sadra
(Gatchaman 2)
Mallanox

Other notable changes

Gatchaman
Identity change command
Battle of the Planets
Identity change command
G-Force
Identity change command
Eagle Riders change command OVA change command (English)
Bird, Go! Transmute! G-force Transform! Eagle Mode, NOW!
Ken Eagle One Transform
Joe Shapeshift, Condor
June Swan Mode, Now
Jimmy Falcon Tracker Transform
Rocky Owl Mode 5, Transmute

Cast

English cast

Japanese cast

Design

In the OVA series, the characters' designs and ages were changed along with other elements as part of the process of "updating" the series for modern audiences. Ken, who had long hair in the original series, was given short hair. Joe was redesigned with more of a "bad boy" image, given a tattoo and made a smoker — His car was also updated to a Shelby Cobra. Jun originally had long green hair but has short brown hair in the OVA, has developed physically and has worked as a model in the past. Jinpei is renamed as Jimmy and given more of a "street kid" look while his position on the team becomes "hacker". Ryu is now the oldest at 25, he was originally 17, and his hairstyle is changed to a blonde and purple mohawk. The GodPhoenix was also redesigned and appears to be larger than the original. The Red Impulse squadron had only three members in the original series while in the OVA continuity there are more.[4]

Music

New music was composed for the OVA by Maurice White (of Earth, Wind & Fire) and Bill Meyers, with additional music by Bob Sakuma from the original TV series. The ending theme "Let's Fly" was performed by Lance Matthew. A music video at the end of the third episode features an updated version of the "Gatchaman Song" by Ichiro Mizuki.

Availability

The OVA was released in Japan on the following dates:

  • Volume 1, "Gatchaman Vs. Turtle King": 10/1/94
  • Volume 2, "Secret Red Impulse": 1/1/95
  • Volume 3, "Final Count 0002": 4/1/95

In the US, the video was distributed by Urban Vision, with the following release dates:

  • Gatchaman OAV Vol 1, "The Dragon King": July 29, 1997
  • Gatchaman OAV Vol 2, "The Red Specter": August 26, 1997
  • Gatchaman OAV Vol 3, "The Final Countdown": September 16, 1997[5]

Initial batches of the subtitled VHS release were recalled due to subtitle timing errors.

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 Script error
  2. "Gatchaman Collection". Mania. Retrieved 2010-07-30. 
  3. "ROBOTECH.COM – The Official Robotech Web Site!". Robotech. Retrieved 2008-07-13. 
  4. "Science Ninja Team: Gatchaman". Ex.org. Retrieved 2008-06-21. 
  5. "Gatchaman". Tatsunoko Production USA. Retrieved 2008-07-12. 

Further reading

External links

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