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Gatchaman, Vol. 1

4.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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(Jun 14, 2005)
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Editorial Reviews

Get ready for the first uncut action-packed volume of Gatchaman!! Originally re-cut and released in the 70’s and 80’s as "G-Force" and "Battle of the Planets," Gatchaman is an anime Legend!! Now for the first time ever see it from the beginning. Totally uncut!

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Katsuji Mori, Isao Sasaki, Kazuko Sugiyama, Yoku Shioya, Shingo Kanemoto
  • Directors: Katsuhisa Yamada, Masami Annô, Wataru Mizusawa
  • Writers: Akiyoshi Sakai, Hirohisa Soda, Jinzô Toriumi, Keiji Kubota, Mikio Matsushita
  • Format: Animated, Color, Dolby, Subtitled, NTSC
  • Language: English, Japanese
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Unrated
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Section 23
  • DVD Release Date: June 14, 2005
  • Run Time: 150 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00092A1MQ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #206,716 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Gatchaman, Vol. 1" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

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By [KNDY] Dennis A. Amith TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 13, 2008
It was October 1972 when "Kagaku Ninja-Tai Gatchaman" first debuted on television. The series spawned 105 episodes and lasted through September of 1974.

The fact that an anime to feature a unique storyline for it'stime: Five characters with unique abilities and cool costumes were far from what was coming out of Japan years earlier.

With "Mach Go Go Go" (Speed Racer) being the hottest anime to be released in the United States and in 1978, fans going crazy over a film called "Star Wars", people wanted more sci-fi and they got that with "Battle of the Planets".

The American version was acquired by gameshow distributor, Sandy Frank, who had the animation adapted for the English market, violent scenes removed and to make up for those deleted scenes, added a robot to the series (Note: In the 70's, the comic book to animated series "Fantastic Four" also featured a robot which was cool to have in an animated series at the time).

It was reported that the cost to edit this animated series was $4.5
million and many people, including myself, were glued to the screen to watch the 85 episodes shown on television.

But the series was not strong compared to other animations in the ratings due to competing anime and viewer's differing tastes.

In Japan, with the release of the animated series in the US, "Gatchaman II" was released in Japan but never shown in the U.S..

The series would not reappear until almost a decade later when Turner Program Services acquired the series and leaving things unedited, selecting different episodes than what was shown on air in the 70's and renamed the series to "G-Force".
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An evil organization named Galactor is trying to take over the world using gigantic robot monsters to spread terror across the Earth. Sometimes they attack oil fields or underwater farms or steal from the national gold reserve. Regular military forces, just like in the Godzilla movies, are pretty much ineffectual. That's where Gatchaman, or the Science Ninja Team, comes in. Founded by the International Science Organization, they are the only ones that can stand up to Galactor. Each of its members has their own vehicle and is named after a bird. They all rendezvous with their ship, the God Phoenix. The members of the team are Ken, the leader who tries to stay rational and calm during battles, especially to temper his second-in-command, Jo, who has an unhealthy obsession with firing Bird Missles at anything that moves! Jun is the only female of the group and therefore is the default mother figure, especially to the brash and immature kid, Jinpei, who is always getting into trouble. But don't get me wrong, she can beat the crap out of Galactor minions just like the guys! The last member is the fat and slothful pilot of the Phonenix, Ryu, who tends to take naps at the worst possible moments.

I got into Gatchaman after buying a Battle of the Planets dvd set a while back. After seeing the episodes 20 years on, I realized that they were horrible! Memories of childhood can only go so far. So then I tried the Japanese language Gatchaman episodes and just loved them. Gatchaman is much more violent than the sanitized Planets and is actually funnier, especially because the characters can cuss due to laxer Japanese restrictions on such things. Another intriguing thing about Gatchaman is that Galactor are not invading aliens, they are human terrorists.
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As a kid, I remember getting up to go to school and watching "Battle of the Planets" every morning at 7am. Fun times. The adventures of Mark, Jason, Princess, Tiny and Keyop (aka G-Force) and their battles to save our world from the sinister forces of Galactor were so much fun to watch. Imagine my surprise just a few years ago, when I learned that the "Battle of the Planets" I watched as a kid was merely a watered down version of a series called "Gatchaman", from Japan. Gatchaman was said to be more violent, more character-driven and plot oriented, and a producer named Sandy Frank bought the rights and created the Americanized version here for the States.

In the Japanese version, the characters are named Ken, Jo, Jun, Jinpei, and Ryu. They are the Science Ninja Team, each knows a particular martial art skill and they wear costumes modelled after birds, and fly in a ship called The Phoenix. So far I only looked at the first DVD (I havent watched the second in my collection as of yet), but what Ive seen so far looks pretty awesome. The animation is cool, very detailed and like i mentioned before, very violent, which I have no problem with at all. Excellent to add to your animation collection by far.
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