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REVIEW: Martian Successor Nadesico Blu-Ray


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MarshalBanana



Joined: 31 Aug 2014
Posts: 1979
PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:30 am Reply with quote
I feel that my interpretation of the show is widely different from Zacs. I thought it was "70s Super Robot shows are awesome, lets embrace that". even when they mock Gekiganger-3, it feels like they are doing so to defend that type of show, claiming that the flaws are part of what makes it great.
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Stampeed Valkyrie



Joined: 10 Aug 2014
Posts: 181
Location: PA
PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:46 am Reply with quote
Nadesico a C rating... lol Rolling Eyes

sorry folks.. this series is neither a museum piece nor something hard to recommend to new fans or other people.. I think the movie at best appears to be more dated due to heavy CGI usage.. and it does benefit the viewer to understand the events that transpired between the TV series and the start of the movie.. google "The blank of 3 years" or Nadesico 3 Year Blank to get a summary to bring you up to speed.

Never heard anyone ever mention Chauvinism and this series in the same sentence until today. Long live non "PC" titles then my friend!

I was more interested in the technical side of things.. I have ADVs release.. and Nozomi's collectors edition.. I'm not sure how much cleaner you make a show that still was hand drawn and not CG to begin with..
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Animegomaniac



Joined: 16 Feb 2012
Posts: 2815
PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:48 am Reply with quote
Wow, somebody woke up on the wrong side of the giant robot series.

I can't say anything about the show from back then because I didn't see it then but when I saw it a few years ago, I really enjoyed it, mostly as an inverse Shinji and with Spike Spencer on the dub as the lead hero this time, it was a rather refreshing viewing.

He does things, he succeeds not because he can but because the production team allows him to. To put what Marshallbanana said in one word, it's a reconstruction of what Evangelion destroyed.

And I'd rather have Nadesico... and I don't have any Evangelion at all. It's not that I hate the series... in general; there are very specific things though..., I just like myself more and I want to continue liking myself.

Oh, and it's impossible to talk about Nadesico without talking about what caused it to happen, what caused it to be necessary. Sure, mentioning it is a good first step to admitting it's a problem but...
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Parsifal24



Joined: 20 Apr 2010
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Location: Holland MI
PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:50 am Reply with quote
This is one of those shows from my "Lost Weekend" period, when I was completely out of Anime fandom for most of the late 90s and early 2000s and didn't watch any Anime. I've always kind of wanted watch this because I like Shō Aikawa. Although if I'm honest I like the hateful Misanthropic Shō Aikawa of Violence Jack and Genocyber the best.

So who knows might give this a spin when I'm more liquid as I'm going through a 90s and early 2000s Anime kick as of late. I did however see Martin Successor Nadesico: The Motion Picture a few years back and enjoyed it. Though I had no earthly idea who some of the characters where and had to rely on Wikipedia to fill in the gaps after I watched it.
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dragonrider_cody



Joined: 14 Jun 2008
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:03 am Reply with quote
I have a soft spot for Nadesico. I didn't watch it until many years after its release, and only because Right Stuf was selling ADV's last think pack at a steep discount. But there is something enjoyable about hearing Spike Spencer play a character that is almost the inverse of Shinji, but ends up being the hero anyway through hard work. Not to mention, an unexpected death early in the series always manages to hit the same.

It's very much a product of it's time, and has aged as well as some others. However, I still find it more watchable than many other shows from the same era. And while the dub may not compare to modern ones, it's definitely much better than the bulk of dubs that were coming out at the time. It may not hold up to the best LA dubs, but it was definitely better than most of the ones we were getting from CPM and others at the time, and is even notably stronger than other ADV dubs from that same time frame.

As for the video quality suggestions, it's definitely cleaner and maybe a bit brighter than the ADV DVD's. The step up in video quality is definitely notable, but not quite as much as some other older titles. As expected from Nozomi, they kept the 4:3 aspect ratio, which is appreciated by me, but perhaps not by others. If you don't have the OVA's yet, it's definitely worth the purchase, which is the main reason I got. If you already have Nozomi's complete release, I don't know if the improved video quality is enough of a reason to upgrade though.
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John Thacker



Joined: 28 Oct 2013
Posts: 532
PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:04 am Reply with quote
MarshalBanana wrote:
I feel that my interpretation of the show is widely different from Zacs. I thought it was "70s Super Robot shows are awesome, lets embrace that". even when they mock Gekiganger-3, it feels like they are doing so to defend that type of show, claiming that the flaws are part of what makes it great.


With a helping of Space Battleship Yamato and Mobile Suit Gundam in there as well.

I think it's pretty inaccurate to say that the bit about how both sides see themselves as the hero comes out of nowhere in the show. It's clearly part of the same narrative of criticism of such shows while still embracing their ideals. At the same time merely because everyone, including people who are villains, see themselves as heroes does not mean that the show itself has that same conclusion. Do these things have anything to teach or not, and is a show about heroism merely an excuse to lionize yourself and demonize your enemies, or is it a call to be the best self you can be? Far from narrative whiplash, the latter part is absolutely a natural consequence of the first three episodes.

The show does have filler, though I prefer older shows' filler to some recent shows that don't take time to develop their characters.
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chito895



Joined: 22 Jan 2015
Posts: 500
Location: Lima, Peru
PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:15 am Reply with quote
It's so fun because just a minute before I saw this review, I was actually singing You get to burning out loud at home, while remembering the time Yurika started singing it during war. This show was hilarious.

Quote:
Ruri explains “well, most of the big questions weren't answered and the war rages on but I guess you'll have to wait and hear about that later”. That's how the show ends.


AH YEAH, Ruri is the freaking best. Cool

I had my problems with Nadesico, especially at the beginning, but its main theme was pretty great to me. And didn't bothered me the what it ended.

Just recently watched it on Nozomi's YouTube page, so is great to know that the BDs look great. I'll try to get a copy as soon as I can.


Last edited by chito895 on Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:18 am; edited 1 time in total
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omiya



Joined: 21 Sep 2011
Posts: 1252
Location: Adelaide, South Australia
PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:16 am Reply with quote
I first heard the OP as a cover by Minami Kuribayashi and Eri Kitamura at Animelo Summer Live 2012, and later managed to watch the series and buy new the 8cm CD single of the OP by Yumi Matsuzawa and ED by Houko Kuwashima. (The ED is available on the HouKo Chronicle CD collection) .

This was a watch right through quickly anime for me, which is rare (You're under arrest and The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya are others). The story kept my attention, meaning that the craziness worked.
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Zac
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:16 am Reply with quote
John Thacker wrote:


I think it's pretty inaccurate to say that the bit about how both sides see themselves as the hero comes out of nowhere in the show. It's clearly part of the same narrative of criticism of such shows while still embracing their ideals. At the same time merely because everyone, including people who are villains, see themselves as heroes does not mean that the show itself has that same conclusion. Do these things have anything to teach or not, and is a show about heroism merely an excuse to lionize yourself and demonize your enemies, or is it a call to be the best self you can be? Far from narrative whiplash, the latter part is absolutely a natural consequence of the first three episodes.

The show does have filler, though I prefer older shows' filler to some recent shows that don't take time to develop their characters.


My point wasn't that the "no heroes or villains" thing comes out of nowhere, but it is picked up halfway through the show after a major plot reveal and it reprioritizes the show's themes in a way that doesn't quite track. That the plot only gets more convoluted as the show goes on doesn't help - not to mention all of this being undermined by the main character's basic narrative.

I figured people would give me a lot of pushback on this - I welcome the debate, but the narrative structure here is a mess and the themes get lost in it, IMO. Can't back down from that.
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MarshalBanana



Joined: 31 Aug 2014
Posts: 1979
PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:37 am Reply with quote
John Thacker wrote:
The show does have filler, though I prefer older shows' filler to some recent shows that don't take time to develop their characters.
A bit of filler can very good, I know it has a bad reputation because of shows that use way too much of it, mostly long running shows. If used sparingly it can, as you put it, develop the characters. It allows them to be placed in scenarios that they would not normally be in, and you learn more about them.
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Vaisaga



Joined: 07 Oct 2011
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:38 am Reply with quote
Wow, I'm pleasantly surprised by this review.

I first watched Nadesico back when I was 15 or so. I didn't like it very much back then and after subsequent rewatches I still don't like it. The reasons I didn't like it have changed a bit, though.

First watch, I couldn't stand Akito. He was such a whiny loser that it makes no sense any girl would like him. He doesn't even have good reason to be so whiny. Shinji's life was legitimately terrible so you can't blame him for being the way he is, but Akito? "Oh poor me I get the chance to pilot the robots I've always loved and have my pick of several beautiful women. My life is such hell!"

Watching it again when I was older he was more tolerable, though the show is very inconsistently with handling him. One episode he'll be hanging out with the crew, doing his cook job and such, and another will have him cooped up in his room moping about Jiro's death. Learning in this review that different writers handled different episodes sure explained a lot.

Also when I was older I realized just how awful a character Yurika is. In the first episode she came off as a bit dopey, but when the situation got serious, so did she. Looked like she was actually going to be a competent captain... but then Akito shows up and for the rest of the series he's all she cares about. She frequently abandons her duty to go bother him and cares about nothing other than getting his attention. I'm not super PC or anything but even I find her portray to be pretty toxic. She has one episode later on where she acts like a proper captain and surprise surprise it's the best in the show.

I often see the show praised for balancing different tones, but they hop between zany comedy and super serious stuff so quickly it'll give you whiplash. To best highlight this one only need to point out that one episode features a wacky funeral montage.

The mecha have cool designs, but the action itself had very little noteworthy. I can barely remember a single battle scene.

Also Jiro Yamada was an insufferable twat. You know he's the kind of guy who trolls 4chan, spamming any thread that doesn't admit that Gekiganger is the best show ever. I wasn't sad when he died.

The plot structure was quite problematic too. It crams too much tragedy into the first few episodes without properly establishing the characters as a unit. We don't get much of a chance to get to know them so it's harder to care when bad stuff happens to them. They flee Earth, go to Mars, come back, get sent on random missions, then major plot reveal. How it should have played out is that the Nadesico launches, hangs around Earth for a bit to do random missions, then they go to Mars. Those random missions would have been the best chance to get everyone comfortable with the characters and the status quo before the rug is pulled out from under them.

And like Zac said, they push the whole "real war isn't like anime!" thing, but in the end Akito always saves the day using those anime tropes.

There certainly was stuff I liked. Ruri was by far the greatest thing to come out of the show, and I liked Akatsuki for how he'd call Akito out on his BS. I liked Ryouko too at first, but I cooled a bit towards her in later rewatches once I realized there's no inciting incident for her feelings for Akito. She can randomly has them one moment.

With how terrible the ending was I was just about ready to declare Nadesico a bad series... But then I watched the movie. Ruri is the main character? Akito got turned into a badass? A kickass final mecha battle? Awww yeeeah, that's my jam! Seriously the movie saved the franchise for me. It grabbed me from the very first scene ("What, they're dead?!") and kept me along for the ride.

People always say how you need to play the Saturn game to understand it, but you really don't. All the main points are established in the movie itself (Yurika and Akito's 'death', their adoption of Ruri, etc). The only thing that flew over my head was Sabu, who was just a bit character in the TV series and has a considerable makeover in the movie.

So yeah, for the longest time I've been considered a crazy person because I dislike the TV series and love the movie.
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BodaciousSpacePirate
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:49 am Reply with quote
Stampeed Valkyrie wrote:
Never heard anyone ever mention Chauvinism and this series in the same sentence until today. Long live non "PC" titles then my friend!


It's somewhat surprising to me, especially considering how progressive the show was deemed to be at the time. It reminds me of how the original Gundam's portrayal of women would have been considered fairly progressive back in 1979, but is absolutely chauvinistic when measured by today's standards.
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Zac
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 12:08 pm Reply with quote
BodaciousSpacePirate wrote:

It's somewhat surprising to me, especially considering how progressive the show was deemed to be at the time.


?! I've never heard anyone praise the show for being "progressive". Do you have any recollection of what they said then?
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BodaciousSpacePirate
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 12:51 pm Reply with quote
Zac wrote:
?! I've never heard anyone praise the show for being "progressive". Do you have any recollection of what they said then?


The most vivid example I can remember people talking about back then was the stuff between Hikaru and Uribatake in episode 17. It really captured the whole "just because I'm a woman interested in the same hobby as you, that doesn't mean you can hit on me" frustration that geek women often feel while engaging in perceived masculine nerd culture activities.

It was considerably more nuanced - and less purposefully antagonistic - than the "just because I'm a woman, that doesn't mean I can't do ____" themes of the show's contemporaries, which often took much more of a "very special episode about feminism" approach to non-romantic interactions between men and women.
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eely225



Joined: 23 May 2006
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Location: West Lafayette, IN
PostPosted: Wed Apr 05, 2017 12:54 pm Reply with quote
Yeah, I'm torn on this one.

I can't imagine that if Nadesico were to air today I would actually be that in to it. I recognize a lot of the problems that Zac mentioned, though I think my reaction to them is less severe.

Nadesico is still just one of those shows I can come back to every few years, watch in three sittings, and enjoy. I readily admit that a lot of that is nostalgia, plus a fondness for the dub.

But would I show it off to a friend or significant other and say "This is anime"? No way. Partly because I tried to do exactly that with a college girlfriend, who watched three episodes and said "I never want to watch anime again."
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