In the near future, humans are beginning to explore the depths of space, even leaving their solar system. Such an exciting time is marred by the fact that evil "Space Monsters" have their sights set on Earth. The humans quickly begin training their warriors to do battle, but will they be enough to save the Earth?
The story of Gunbuster starts out as basically a school drama, only with giant robots. From then it moves on to a space-traveling drama. This part is very interesting, because the humans are traveling at the speed of light, which apparently has a drastic effect on space and time. For instance, the pilots could be in space for 6 months, and 10 years could pass on Earth. Of course this leads to some sad situations as the heroes return to Earth only to find that their friends have all been aging without them.
The Mecha have a surprisingly small role in the OVA, only appearing for a short amount of time, and they weren't too memorable.
As Gunbuster was originally released from 1988-1989, the animation seems a bit dated, though it has aged relatively well.
The color palette is pretty low-key and realistic, making it easy to believe this story was happening on Earth, to the people of Earth. Had they gone with a more vibrant/bright color scheme, this anime would've seemed a bit more silly, and the drama wouldn't have worked as well. The colors were a great complement to the tone of the story.
The final episode is animated in black and white. Many people (including me) will likely find this annoying at first, but give it a chance. It adds a special, new kind of flavor to the ending of the story. Almost as though you're suddenly viewing it from afar, like you're reading about it in a newspaper rather than watching events in person as you had been the rest of the anime.
Also, bonus points to this anime for pioneering the "Gainax Bounce." ;)
The music fit the scenes well, but is nothing too impressive.
The voice actors did a good job in this one. They fit their characters well and helped me see things from their perspective in this surprisingly emotional anime.
The characters went through many changes during this short series. You'll find yourself liking a character one episode, only to find out that they're a bit of a jerk during the next. The emotional trauma caused by the constant time-shifts leads to some unique character development, which you should find quite interesting.
This Anime Is... An Essential. If you're an anime fan, especially a fan of Mecha/Sci-Fi anime, you need to see Gunbuster.
Should I Watch This Anime? Yes! Like I said above, Gunbuster is basically a must-see for true anime fans. And at only 6 episodes, you aren't "throwing away" a huge chunk of your life if you don't like it. Enjoy!
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