English: Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet
Synonyms: Suisei no Galgantia
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Apr 7, 2013 to Jun 30, 2013
23 min. per episode
PG-13 - Teens 13 or older
L represents licensing company
Score: 7.731 (scored by 61503 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
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SynopsisThe story begins in the distant future in the far reaches of the galaxy. The Human Galactic Alliance has been constantly fighting for its survival against a grotesque race of beings called "Hidiaazu." During an intense battle, the young lieutenant Ledo and his humanoid mobile weapon Chamber are swallowed up into a distortion of time and space. Waking from his artificially induced hibernation, Ledo realizes that he has arrived on Earth, the planet on the lost frontier. On this planet that was completely flooded by the seas, people live in fleets of giant ships, salvaging relics from the seas' depths in order to survive. Ledo arrives on one of the fleets called Gargantia. With no knowledge of the planet's history or culture, he is forced to live alongside Amy, a 15-year-old girl who serves as a messenger aboard the Gargantia fleet. To Ledo, who has lived a life where he knows nothing but fighting, these days of peace continue to surprise him.
Related AnimeAdaptation: Suisei no Gargantia, Suisei no Gargantia
Side story: Puchitto Gargantia, Suisei no Gargantia Specials
Sequel: Suisei no Gargantia: Meguru Kouro, Haruka
Characters & Voice Actors
There's a perpetual belief that the bigger and more explosive a story is, the better it becomes.
In the case of "Suisei no Gargantia", bigger is anything but better. What makes the first half of the anime so special, and so rewarding, is made irrelevant by the bloated mess that follows. And it's a shame- it had the potential to be one of the best anime of these past few years.
Despite being the latest work of the (in)famous Urobuchi Gen, Suisei no Gargantia depicts a much more down-to-earth story. There is no ruthless slaughtering of the characters (though some might deserve it at times), nor are there any plot twists until the last few episodes. Suisei no Gargantia is set in a distant future where the Earth has been flooded. And flooded entirely. What remains of human civilization live their days in fleets of antiquated ships, free from any worry but the rare threat of pirates.
Enter "Ledo", a teenage soldier from across the galaxy who somehow, conveniently enters a wormhole that drops him to the birthplace of humanity-- Earth.
The most interesting aspect of the series is how Ledo copes with (and eventually accepts) a society so distinctly different from his own. Where Ledo comes from, concepts such as peace do not exist. Humans are born and raised for the sole purpose of fighting their enemy, the Hideaze. And naturally there is no such thing as love or friendship.
What follows is a series of amusing, sometimes uncomfortable scenes of Ledo experiencing culture shock. What the heck is the purpose of money? ... to buy more weapons to shoot dudes with? He has no idea. Whenever he experiences something new, he and his AI companion ("Chambers") will inevitably draw some ridiculous contrast to their own society. In one scene, Ledo even asks the person beside him why an injured child is alive. I felt very bad for laughing at that.
Ledo also experiences a rapid period of growth as he becomes closer with the inhabitants of the Gargantia fleet. He learns to enjoy life, how to do ordinary things such as swimming or cooking, and what friendship means. He transforms from a cold, ruthless soldier into a normal human being, one that can feel emotion and remorse. The Ledo at the start of the story is not the Ledo at the end of the story, and this character development is something that deserves no shortage of praise.
Sadly, there's also everything else about the story.
If you enjoyed the relaxed and carefree nature of the first half, prepare to have everything you liked about the show flipped upside down in the second half. The character development slows to a crawl. The comedy becomes nonexistent. What is hammered in its place is a joyless disaster, devoid of anything even remotely interesting.
Where to begin? I suppose the moronic characterization would be a start. While the first half showed signs of the side characters breaking away from their stereotype, the second half seeks instead to bury them in that shell. The only character aside from Ledo who even receives any notable growth is Pinion, but his backstory is so contrived and heavy-handed that there's little reason to care about his suffering.
Even worse are the minor characters who populate the Gargantia fleet. They are insufferably stupid. There is one scene where Ledo is reprimanded by the fleet's commanders for protecting them from a pirate attack, which would have inevitably led to looting and violence. Are you kidding me?
It makes one wonder why this screen time wasn't handed to Amy instead. Aside from Ledo, she is the only character in the show with sense in her brain. She is the one who changed Ledo, who taught him that life is worth living, and yet she is merely relegated to the role of a cheer leader by the end. She deserved much more than that.
Sure, Ledo is plenty developed, but he is just as much a victim as anybody else. The change that the first half had building for him is simply used as a tool to force in cheesy dialogue about the power of friendship. During the climax, he changes his mind over an important decision simply because Amy came flying by on a kite to yell at him. Can I puke now?
This would be bad enough on its own, but the plot itself fares no better. Plot twists and ridiculous contrivances are the name of the game. Everything is somehow tied to Ledo and his own people, and the 'twists' (especially regarding the antagonist) are so cliched that they almost feel as if the writer was playing a joke. And then there's not even a proper ending to wrap all of this mess up! It ends abruptly with little to no context, begging you to follow through with the sequel OVA for answers. There is absolutely no reason why the audience should have to watch a sequel in order to have a proper conclusion to a story that they already invested their time in. That is silly.
On a more positive note, the artwork is generally decent. The characters are modeled consistently while the oceans are rendered with grandeur, effectively making the post-apocalyptic Earth seem more like a paradise. However, the quality plummets in the 11th episode, where entire scenes have crowds of characters drawn as blobs. Literal blobs.
The soundtrack is also one of the better points of the anime. There's nothing here that will stay in your mind for eternity (though the ending song is sure as heck relaxing), but each of the lighthearted tracks do a solid job of conveying the feelings of relaxation and hope which pervade the first half. It's an atmospheric anime when it tries to be, which makes the second half all the more lamentable.
Suisei no Gargantia is an anime with an identity crisis. Is it a dramatic story about the dark secrets of humanity, or is it simply a lighthearted tale about a young man finding his place in life? Who really knows. I don't think it does either.
It didn't have to turn out this way. read more
**SPOILER FREE REVIEW**
Watching Suisei no Gargantia is like watching someone who is completely incompetent play a good video game for an extended period of time. Is there anything more aggravating? They ignore obvious powerups right in front of their face, they never know what attack to use at what time, and they have absolutely no idea where they are going. As much as you desperately would like to take the reigns or at least guide them in the right direction, you simply can’t. This process is universally frustrating and cringe-worthy because you know that if this person were only playing correctly, you would be able to see the gameplay in all its glory. Instead, you end up sitting through hours of moronic lollygagging that goes utterly nowhere. To make a long story short, Gargantia is a comparably pointless and meandering ordeal despite the obvious potential for a heartwarming, meaningful, and even thought-provoking story that it at one point seemed destined to eventually arrive at.
Synopsis: In the distant future, The Human Galactic Alliance has been constantly fighting for its survival against a race of beings called "Hidiaazu." During an intense battle, a soldier named Ledo and his humanoid mecha “Chamber” are sent spiraling through time and space. Several months later, Ledo wakes up from his artificially induced hibernation and realizes that he has arrived on planet Earth; the birthplace of humanity. The life he has known as an HGA soldier differs drastically from the culture he now finds here on Earth, as he struggles mightily to adjust to the new environment.
If I had to give Gargantia credit for anything, I’d praise the fact that’s it’s ambitious. It simultaneously aspires to be a thriller, a slice of life, a romance, a commentary on morality, and a mecha-action. Unfortunately, its own ambition coupled with some god awful writing resulted in an incomprehensible mess of plot holes, no direction what so ever, and so many irrelevant subplots that it becomes difficult to even comprehend what the show’s primary narrative even is.
It’s easy to be lured into Gargantia via its bright animation and intriguing first couple of episodes, but every good aspect it ever manages to establish goes to waste simply because it refuses to pick an identity at any point; this anime has NO idea what it wants to be. My first guess was that it was going to be a charming slice of life about a young man discovering what it really means to live, but then it decides to go on an incoherent, pointless, and shock-factor driven tangent that tries to introduce aspects of action, psychology, and suspense without an ounce of the narrative framework required to successfully do so. It’s almost comical when you realize in hindsight how irrelevant and pointless this anime’s little “Shyamalan Twist” was to the main storyline. When the aspect of the narrative that’s slated to carry the most emotional weight can be removed entirely without anything being different, something is wrong. VERY wrong. But, surprisingly, one of the most nonsensical plot twists in anime history isn’t even the biggest issue facing Gargantia’s plot, because that title goes to the entire 2nd half of the anime, which is the most horrible, confused, and plothole laced 6-7 episodes I think I have ever seen. To sum all this up in a single sentence, Gargantia’s plot is absolute garbage. This is far and away the worst thing that writer Gen Urobuchi has ever written or will ever write again, ESPECIALLY when you consider the characters:
Our protagonist, Ledo, is the only character in this show. That’s right; you heard me. There are no other characters. LITERALLY everyone else in this show is a plot device. Amy, the female lead and love interest, is as 1-dimmensional as it gets. No personality, no motivations (partially because she barely does anything), no backstory, no nothing. She exists only so we can pretend that Ledo formed a bond with one of these boring sacks at some point. The closest thing this show ever gets to a character (besides Ledo) who exists for purposes other than advancing the plot IS A GODDAMN ROBOT. That’s right; Chamber, Ledo’s robot, is the closest thing to a side character that you are going to get. Notice the emphasis on the word “close”, since Chamber is still an information-spewing plot device. The laughable way in which the show eventually tries to portray some sort of bond between Ledo and a robot makes the god-awful writing all the more cringe-worthy. Oh, and in case you didn’t guess it already, Ledo is a bad character. They try to convince you at the end that he learned something and went through some kind of change but… When? It never feels like he’s learning something nor does it ever feel like he’s ever changing. Not to mention that his inconsistent reactions to events around him amplify the show’s glaring plotholes. *Sigh... It’s just really, REALLY bad writing for the complete lack of a better term. Putting it as bluntly as that is the best way I can think to sum it up.
In conclusion, Gargantia is not worth your time and it will only cause you immense disappointment if anything at all. One of my least favorite reviewer-clichés is to go on and on about how “This anime had potential”, because EVERY anime has potential; you aren’t really saying anything with that. In this case, however, I really feel like this anime could have been special. If it had merely picked ONE out of the multiple great ideas it had and focused on it, this might have been one my favorites. Instead, it’s shit. Storytelling is fickle, I suppose. read more
Both anime involve themes of censorship, war, and morality. Both anime have a huge plot twist and similar execution.
Once successfully survive the apocalypse, humans form small colony. But information of the cause of the apocalypse still remains classified. After stories develop, the dark truth behind the cause of the apocalypse slowly revealed.
Both themes includes morality, war between species, classified information, civilization, and human experiment. One retell the story with the supernatural and the other one with sci-fi.
Battle for survival. The eradication of a species. Science gone wrong.
In both series, there are dark secrets that becomes unraveled as the episodes progresses. These involve humanity and their origins.
Among other factors, there is the concept of morality that comes into play regarding civilization and the people/creatures in them. From that, there is also conflict that results in battles/wars between the two sides.
There is supernatural elements present in both series that is a thrilling ride as our main characters takes on an adventure that they may never forget.
Both anime are based around similar ideas; which unfortunately I can't explain to much because that would be a spoiler.
Even though there are also many differences (Shinsekai Yori is more psycological and darker while Suisei no Gargantia is mecha for example) both are great anime that sometimes suffer from low pacing.
In both anime, there's a war between species. Information is often censored in each society and both protagonists receive a revelation.
Both have somewhat of a Utopian setting but turns into a major plot twist towards the end.
Both Eureka 7 and Suisei no Gargantia feature unique sci-fi worlds that have similarities but fundamental differences. At their core, there are robots involved, a rather large cast of characters, and a beautiful world filled with secrets. Essentially, there is a sense of adventuring, of growing up, of dealing with a harsh world and searching for one's identity. Eureka 7 paints a fuller world with its length which is something Gargantia could've done better, but if you liked one, you're bound to at least be interested in the other. Highly recommended for sci-fi fans.
Out of everything, Suisei no Gargantia reminded me most of this. Setting aside difference between one another and learning about the wonders of life.
The main character's peaceful life changed. He meets a group of people who are in a similar situation and decides to help them out. Both series has the main protagonist who is put in a new surrounding.
In both series, a main protagonist gets involved with a mysterious character after a certain incident. In Eureka Seven, it's Eureka. in Suisei no Gargantina, that mysterious character is Ledo. These two characters have trouble communicating with others or understanding others' feelings. However with the help of their new friend, they are able to understand the world a bit better.
There is mecha/science fiction themes present in both series. In fact, the mysterious character present relies on them and treats it as somewhat of a friend.
The backgrounds of both series also feels somewhat similar; giving off that science fiction outlook.
Both series also has drama, comedy, and of course action.
Both have space, an alien race that causes harm, and mechas.
Both include mechs, and a character that isn't exactly human. Ledo is similar to Eureka at the beginning of the series, he has no attachments to life, nor human feelings. He is however a human, but not entirely. It looks like they are created not born. It's a definitely a good watch.
Now both involve moving to a "new" planet due too the original being inhabitable and using giant robots to fight their enemies. As well as having the main protagonist being slightly emotionless. All in all slightly similar story and I feel if you enjoyed eureka 7 you would enjoy this.
Opening Theme"Kono Sekai wa Bokura wo Matteita (この世界は僕らを待っていた)" by Minori Chihara
Ending Theme"Sora to Kimi no Message (空とキミのメッセージ)" by ChouCho
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