In the distant future, the human race is on the brink of destruction. Mankind, which now drifts in space aboard a massive, technologically-advanced base known as Avalon, is poised to launch one final, desperate attack against its enemy, the alien race Hideauze. It’s during this battle that Ledo, a mecha pilot, is thrown into a wormhole and sent to an unfamiliar place: Earth, the lost birthplace of humanity said to have turned to ice long ago. Having been saved by the inhabitants of the Gargantia, a fleet of ships that traverses the now-flooded planet, Ledo must come to terms with these primitive people with their backwards language and technology, learn to communicate, and try to find a way back home to his place in the sky.
The Planet of Origin
The Villainous Empress
The Flute of Recollection
A Soldier's Fate
Deep Sea Secret
Island of Ambition
Supreme Ruler of Terror
Moment of Decision
Gargantia is the series that began to make people realize Gen Urobuchi is just a hack who makes up cool ideas, stuffs them with pretentious dialogues that he steals from books, and then doesn’t give a damn when it comes to making sense out of them, since he knows the average anime fan considers Naruto to be an amazing show. Anything more thematically complicating or violent than Naruto is instantly being labeled as a masterpiece (Akame Ga Kill, Tokyo Ghoul, Future Diary), so why would he bother?Themes and splatter are not enough to mesmerize the masses though; they also need lots of pretty colors for making their minds to go blank, and to be unable to understand the bullshit they are watching. If the animation is bad, they would surely bitch about every little detail, but if it’s good they will magically not find anything bad to say about it (Kimi no Na Wa). Which stands true for this series as well, since it’s very well animated and has lots of cute girls (a contribution of a hentai character designer). That is enough for making your average anime fan to begin waifu wars instead of booing the endless nonsense in the story. It’s not like there isn’t a story and you are just watching a plotless harem. If you analyze it at face value, lots of things are happening and are rich enough in content for writing a thousand essays about. Because if you don’t, you won’t have much to go on, besides saying how untapped the potential is or how nothing really makes any sense. Many will rush to defend Urobutchi by claiming he only wrote a few episodes and that the rest are another writer’s fault. Such excuses don’t make the final product any better and even prove how much of a lazy hack he is for not bothering to write full scripts anymore, since he sells by his name alone. After all, that is what most were saying about the show. It is a masterpiece because his name is mentioned briefly in the production team. As always, the setting is very interesting (a combo of Xenogears meets Waterworld, populated by hentai people), and just like in all the stories Urobutcher writes, it is never developed in any way, since he spends all his time in making up plot twists full of shock effect, and in having the characters being mouthpieces who spit superficial philosophy every 3 minutes. Thus the whole concept of mankind in the far future being in war with space squids is just hanging there as background decoration, while the audience spends the whole show in watching cute girls doing cute things, and amoral monstrosities butchering people over ideologies which have no ground in reality. And guess what; it was more than enough for the majority of anime fans to like this travesty of a show, since it was making them go OMG THAT IS MAKING ME THINK SOOOO MUCH ABOUT WHAT MAKES US HUMAN. Too bad you get no real insight to any of that, since nothing is elaborated or explored, and in many cases is even contradicted in order to confuse you and make you think it’s all 2deep4u. Examples of the above include:- The society of mankind in space. You get this infodump in the first 5 minutes regarding how they breed, fight, and aim to populate the galaxy, but don’t really see anything beyond that. - The morals of the Earth people. They claim to show respect for life, when all you see them doing is constantly killing each other during pirate attacks. - The logic of the Earth people. They blame the protagonist for killing their enemies, even though they ordered him to do exactly that. - The intelligence of the Earth people. They blame him again for not appreciating life the way they do, although he has no knowledge about this, since he is from space, and thus can’t be accused of being wrong about something he was never taught. - The perception of the Earth people. Despite the numerous times the spaceman effortlessly wiped out their enemies, they still think they can overpower him anytime they feel like it with mere sticks and stones. - The abilities of the spaceman’s mecha. They are completely different in each episode; especially when it comes to radars. • On episode 1 it requires from the pilot to walk around so the robot can map the area. • On episode 2 it can map a huge area around it with perfect precision and no help from the pilot. • On episode 3 it has a problem in scanning a few meters away from it. • On episode 4 it can easily see what lies behind thick steel walls but not what swims a few meters in the sea. • On episode 7 it can magically scan underwater just fine. • It accepts to reveal top secret information to the spaceman just because there is nobody present with a higher rank than him. Meaning, all the security systems in the universe can be accessed if you simply fly away from your fleet. • The robot follows commands only when it suits the plot, it keeps attacking even when the pilot tells it to stop, and shovels philosophical revelations down his throat without being ordered to do so. There is this excuse going around, about not having enough episodes for properly exploring the themes. It does not stick when half of the episodes are filler, stuffed with fan service. We get stuff like a masochistic lesbian pirate harem, a beach episode, and a belly dance episode full of underage girls for no bloody reason other than masturbation aid. They are supposed to be there so the spaceman can integrate into the world by experiencing sexuality, but they are so goofy you just can’t take them seriously, much less treat them as thematic exploration.Of course if all you want is fancy visuals, good ideas, and softporn, then the show definitely works. There is a lot of shallow entertainment in it, sprinkled with shallow philosophy and fancy action scenes for maintaining the interest of the casuals. The budget is very high, the animation is very lively, and as far as comedy goes, the interaction between dumb barbarians and super advanced spacemen creates lots of humorous moments. It’s in fact the best part of the show; it’s a shame they didn’t build on that, and instead opted for poorly inserted philosophies by a robot. Characterization is paper thin as well, just like it is in all Urobucher shows, since it’s always concept based instead of character based. People are always treated as plot devices, unable to behave as normal human beings because they exist to serve a role instead of being part of the setting. - Nothing in the protagonist’s shift from emotionless to caring feels natural because he is never allowed to change gradually on his own. Instead of giving the hero some time to ponder if his space culture is worth to go back to, he is instead given horrifying revelations that have him reacting by screaming, and the robot lecturing him as if it’s a wise sage. What you are actually getting is a blank self-insert protagonist with no personality, so he can be anything we imagine him to be, being bombarded with theories about morality by Urobutcher who speaks through the robot, and then having lots of dim-witted hentai chicks trying to befriend (and obviously bang) him, as if you are playing a porn game. - The first time the female pirate leader appears, she is a typical bad guy. How did she manage to be a leader? We are never told. She disappears from the story and reappears close to the ending as a completely different character, again with no explanation. Her out of screen change was the result of having completed her first role, and then being given a new one, with no regards to how or if it makes sense. Why is she even wearing the same slutty outfit, if she is supposed to be in a cult full of joyless people? Why do they believe her or what is she even doing there? There is no answer because the scriptwriter doesn’t care. - The robot ends up acting more realistically than any of the hentai bimbos or the stone faced protagonist. It’s as if there is no bloody way for a human to realize all that; we need an emotionless machine to force-feed us answers that all people should know, regarding what it means to be human. And even the robot is not an actual character to begin with, since it’s just Urobuchi in disguise, stealing quotes from other books and using them as his own, in a lazy attempt to show how smart he is at stealing ideas, without knowing what to do with them. There are several plot twists in the show, and they are all a complete mess. - One is about the alien enemies once upon a time being humans. It makes the protagonist to lose his mind when he finds out he was killing people all this time. But the thing is, those people had altered their DNA to such a ridiculous degree that they were no longer the same species. He wasn’t killing people because they are no longer people. In the meantime, when he was killing hundreds of pirates in the early episodes, he didn’t feel a thing DESPITE THEM BEING PEOPLE. - Another one is Earth going through an ice age, which forces mankind to go to space so it can avoid extinction. If that’s true, how come the people who stayed behind survived this extinction-level ice age and are now having a normal life? It’s almost like the space people could have stayed on Earth. - Another twist is the out of nowhere introduction of an evil robot from the spaceman’s civilization, doing obviously evil things in an evil place with evil people, so we won’t have to wonder if the space people were right to leave the planet. The show itself tells us what to root for, which makes it lazy and contrived since it takes away the dilemma. Also, the final enemy is an evil counterpart of the protagonist and his robot. This is stuff you expect to see in silly fighting shonen and not in philosophical shows that are supposed to be analyzing the meaning of life, like Gargantia does so painfully. There is no sense of seriousness or depth compared to titles such as Haibane Renmei or Ghost in the Shell, it’s a parody of science fiction, with minors twerking their asses all over your face for further making it clear. And yet many viewers were still blinded and wrote essays about how mature it is. Anecdote epilogue: "OMG I killed people!" So what, you killed dozens of pirates in the first episodes. "That doesn't count, I wasn't feeling like a human back then." And now that you do, do you care? "To hell with real humans, I only feel compassion for these evolved monsters which have no emotions or individuality." They are technically not people, you know. They are now a different species, like we are to apes. "We are still cousins!" I am not sure if it means anything at this point, but did you notice know Hideause look like fish? "Yes I did." What have you been eating all this time on Earth? "OMG!" *TROLLFACE* UROBUCHI *TROLLFACE*
This anime got a 10 from me, but it takes some serious explaination. So this will be long and in depth. Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet, I hurt myself a couple times trying to say it at first. This anime was pretty good. so I was writing this while watching the last couple episodes, and sh*t got so real that I had to change everything, so here I go for the second time. at first I was drawn into the anime, it was fun, kind of funny, cool, ect. It explored many different themes and, unlike many anime, actually did a good job of explaining things logically for me. I was impressed. Normally, I dislike themes about pacifism, it makes me feel less a part of the anime and it seems more like a lecture or some crap. GotVP had this theme too, but they handled it exremely well. Here is why: --they didnt dwell on mistakes involving this theme--they didnt try to cram it down the viewers throat--they showed how it can naturally be a part of life, I guess you can say they rationalized it well.I was very very impressed by how they took something that most animes do poorly and made it look good. Now for a little while it seemed like it might be headed in the wrong direction, but it did not. I was worried up until the end, but my worry was unfounded. There are also several great twists which add even more themes to the series. They paved the way for some great character developement and some sick truths. Furthermore everything matched up. Everything built into the end. It doesnt seem like it, but trust me it does. now to the more direct part so you can gain a better understanding. Story: --started with simple themes of life and started building heavier themes up from that, everything fit and made sense, they explained every point very well. Extremely impressive--similar to the themes, the conflicts and moods matched. Started light, but got heavy and weighed on the hearts of the characters, brought out great story development and finished perfectly. Animation: Production I.G. made the animations gorgeous Sound: the voice actors were very solid and the soundtrack was great, not Attack on Titan great, but still a 9. Characters: I came to love the characters, and they had so many unique and great ones. Even the bad guys were interesting and well placed. They also focused on the right people. obviously the main character needed the most building, but they somehow gave every secondary and most minor characters a special place in the anime. Only the best animes are able to pull this off. Overall: GREAT START, GREAT DEVELOPMENT, GREAT END, what more do you want?! Most people will enjoy the vast array of themes that come out in this anime, and they did it all in 13 awesome episodes. this gave me the same feeling as Fractale, but Fractale was done by A-1 Studios and they have a tendancy of screwing up, which they did to Fractale. I HIGHLY RECOMMEND Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet. GO CHECK IT OUT!!
What is worse, a show that aims high and fail or a show that doesn’t and succeed. Personally, I think the latter is more acceptable. I feel this way since a show doesn’t aim high doesn’t give me false expectations. Shows that do aim high, but fail to deliver just leave me angry and frustrated, such in the case with Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet. The first episode set up something that could've been genuinely interesting. It yet another fish of water story, this time it’s in the distant future with a mecha pilot from the Galactic Alliance named Ledo, gets stranded on a floating boat city called Gargantia ( thus the title name ) on a water covered earth and have to learn to get along with the indigenous population. While this is far from an original idea, it leaves itself open to many different ideas and concepts to explore. But sadly it squandered any potential it had in favor favor of fanservice, filler, shock factor, and deus ex machinas. The point where I knew this anime was going suck really hard was when Amy asked Ledo help deal with some pirates to later to condemn him for killing the pirates. Amy is all like “ you shouldn’t kill people” for no real reason. First off, it’s Amy’s fault that she never specifies what she wanted Ledo to do. Ledo clearly explained before hand that he is warmonger society and that he was raised specifically for war. What did she expect Ledo to do if she never ? And this “ we value all life “ BS is completely contradicted because in the very same episode, the people of Gargantia who were attacked by pirates were using machine guns to kill pirates. It doesn’t stop there. In the next episode, the higher ups of Gargantia ask Ledo to help fend off the main pirate fleet, but not to kill any of the pirates. Then the people of Gargantia proceed ………... to kill the pirates. Seriously, this one of the most backward society ever. Why would they let Ledo pacify the pirates? It’s not like they are holding some moral high ground since they hold no qualms shooting at the pirates. And it would only benefit them if they had Ledo pacify the pirates since his mecha is the strongest thing on the planet. The only reason they do this is just because the plot said so. And if this isn’t a sign of bad writing, I don’t know what is. And the show proceeds to go up it own ass. It really tries to convince its viewers that is moving and emotional, but it just comes off as manipulative and soulless. In the last third, the show does a 180 tonal shift and throws out a bunch of Shyamalan twist just make the viewer go “ OMG, I TOTALLY DIDN’T SEE THAT COMING!!” I was burying my face in my hands because I couldn’t give a fuck. The show done nothing to make me care about the characters. And it doesn’t help the fact that the twists are totally clique and can be seen coming from a mile away. Hell, they even use “ it was human all along” twist that is used in almost everything. And as if it couldn’t get any worse, the show throws in evil counterparts for the main characters. Now there’s an EVIL Ledo, an EVIL Chamber, and an EVIL Gargantia. Then stuff happens, someone shoots a nuke at the evil Gargantia, Chamber pulls a deux ex machina out of his databanks, and the show just seemingly ends with almost nothing resolved. As for the characters, I have nothing much to say about them. Other than Ledo, everyone seems to either serve as a plot devices or set pieces. The only other “character” might actually be Ledo’s mech Chamber. Yeah, out of the dozen or so characters, there are only two that might actually be considered “characters”. If you couldn’t tell before, I don’t recommend this anime. If you want an anime with an interesting world or a soothing atmosphere go watch Haibane Renmei or Shinsekai Yori. If you want a good sci fi story that handles multiple themes go watch Ergo Proxy, Lain, or Zegapain. Seriously, just avoid this show at all costs.
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