In the 22nd century, there are no longer any world wide wars. Instead, small scale wars break out all over the Earth. Meanwhile, a large robot appears who protects the weak. It is called "Dancougar Nova". Some even call it God.
However, no one knows the reason for its existence - not even its pilots.
Then, another robot, beyond anyone's expectations, reveals itself as the true enemy and begins its attack on the Earth.
Dancougar Nova retaliates against this enemy with a power that was kept secret until now. Will Dancougar Nova be able to save the Earth? The prelude to this explosive confrontation rings out.
The storyline also has quite a wierd plot. But it ends up being an anime a little bit sloppy side.
The anime really shows how outdated the anime feels when you first look at it. I'm sure that was partly to keep the feel of the original series but have a new generation look to it.
The characters were kind of off the wall choices for saving the world. But little by little they tell you why each one was chosen.
Now the sound not horrible but its not great either, its bearable. But what saves this show some points in the sound department is the
For what its worth as a 12-episode series and a retelling of an old 80's animation, the show isnt that bad.
If you cant keep an open mind, i highly reccomend something else. But for those looking for a cheesy action anime with a lil fanservice that you can finish in one sitting pick this up.
This show sort of reminds me of the Power Rangers. Only the Power Rangers were lame, didn't really do anything at all and worst of all: it was live action.
The robots in Dancouga Nova are animated in a typical 80's style (like Macron One), but don't look old due to the wonders of CGI. Furthermore, this series looks fresh and has a lot of potential for the main characters to develop.
If you like mecha series and loved the 80's, this is definitely a show to pick up!
This was actually pretty all right. I'm a big fan of the original Dancouga series and at some point swore to never watch Dancouga Nova out of principle. I made a snap judgment assuming it'd be some moe fanservice sell-out, but the reality is that it's a standard mecha series that doesn't go so far as to insult the original series. That being said, it IS still very standard, and while not an embarrassment it struggles to find a reason to be watched by both mecha and Dancouga fans. I decided to shovel down this one cour series since Dancouga Nova seems to have replaced
the original in the Super Robot Wars games, and how many mecha series are there that aren't a billion episodes long?
Given its episode count, Dancouga Nova is able to pace itself at a decent clip without dragging scenes or rushing the storyline too much. It's a simple series that isn't difficult to watch but isn't inspiringly creative or well-executed either. The team can't compare to the original but are all likable enough. Much of the dynamic that made the original cast so endearing was their abrasive qualities and inter-conflicts. They were a team with little to no connections culled and forced to work together and they naturally clashed and bonded over time. The increasing friendship of the Dancouga Nova pilots is still an observable thing, but it happens quicker and understandably so considering how soft the pilots are in comparison. It was hard for me not to be disappointed in lead character Aoi Hidaka's comparison to Shinobu Fujiwara. Fujiwara is a vainglorious asshole in some ways that would normally be associated with a generic shonen protagonist, but the writers were aware of his personality flaws and wrote them into his character development and interaction with others. Fujiwara is routinely criticized and denied his superiority complex by his teammates, and watching both his successes and failures at proving himself is a huge draw of the show and the biggest example of how the characters drove the original series. By comparison, Aoi is introduced as a tough daredevil similar to Shinobu, but entirely lacks his extremes and the flaws that come with them, meaning she loses both of those appeals mentioned earlier. It's actually her that comes across as generic, which is a shame considering the rarity of female mecha leads. She's universally soft and reasonably aggressive at any time, and she becomes bland, indistinct, and predictable in her reactions and her team's reactions to her.
The other team members fare better and worse. Kurara makes a positive impression in the beginning of the series as she's more of an extreme of Aoi's archetype, being a serious and highly professional policewoman. But the flaws of her personality, mainly her suspicious nature and coldness, aren't woven into her to make her more interesting past the beginning. She quickly becomes an Aoi clone rather than standing out, hotblooded in battle and neutral in demeanor. Johnny is the worst teammate of anyone, having absolutely zero conflicts with his character at any time and being the constant deliverer of a run-on gag where he mentions reading the latest men's magazines. His milquetoast personality is the least forgivable because it's never paired with anything endearing at any point in the show. He feels like team filler, and the run-on gags are a cheap way to force lines by him when his personality itself wouldn't make anything he delivers worth hearing. He also has an interest in a minor idol character, which I only mention because it's possibly a reference to the voice actress/pop star Rie Fujiwara from the original series. Last on the team is Sakuya, a deliberately homeless teenager who's chosen (for a reason we never learn) to be another of Dancouga's pilots. Despite his flimsy motivations, the overly zealous jokester of the group remains the most consistently entertaining since he never loses his distinguishable personality traits. Still, he lacks his own conflict.
Together the Dancouga pilots have little difficulty agreeing to a secret organization's plan. Their job is to travel the globe, interfering with conflicts to assist whatever the losing side is at the time regardless of motives or morals. I like this premise. It bears a similarity to Mobile Suit Gundam 00's premise, which Dancouga Nova actually predates by a few months. While I don't think the Dancouga Nova team's mission of leveling conflicts to draw them out and prevent them from escalating is very justifiable, it at least raises a moral and philosophical question for the show and characters to work with. In the beginning, the team is meant with some resistance of this ideology and questions it themselves, but alas, in the most disappointing part of the show this concept is nothing short of abandoned in the face of a more generic "fight against evil" plot that drives the remainder of the series. The questions this premise raises never amount to any substantial debate, let alone resolution. It ends up being intriguing and a proof of concept that doesn't deliver on any potential.
In a rare twist, my biggest problem with a show ends up being its animation quality. Dancouga Nova makes the original 80s series look like Studio Ghibli. I've seen people theorize that this was intentional to nod to the original series's animation problems, but that's a nonsense theory because the two's issues often manifest in different ways and it's evident Dancouga Nova's struggling with a budget as its animation gets consistently worse every single episode. Even still, a hand-painted Blu-ray release will almost always look better than a sloppy, low resolution, digitally-colored DVD release. Even putting aside the release format bias the original series would look better just from the techniques used, while Nova struggles with similar framerate issues that its averagely directed action scenes wouldn't make much use of anyway. The final three episodes introduce this absolutely obnoxious technique where, instead of "camera" angles shifting to show new characters talking or a different focus, a section of the frame (such as a standing character) will have their outline filled in with another character's talking face or some other scene. It makes the frame composition look like fragmented chaos, and if it's a "style" then it's definitely not one that benefits the series. Also introduced at this point are tacky screen wipes used with character faces like it's straight out of some 70s superhero cartoon. It's so cheap. As for the new Dancouga design, it doesn't beat the original, but I like it overall. The biggest issue are the weird vertical stereo-looking boxes on the side of its head. In conclusion, both series' visuals are littered with warts, but at least the original series had the decency to wear makeup.
As for the music, there's no comparison. I struggle to remember any song from the soundtrack other than the repeatedly used battle theme, which sounds like pop rap recorded on a cassette tape. It's barely audible and the same verse from the song is used constantly until the final battle. The original series could've used music variety as well, but tracks like Burning Rage are lovably distinct both in their archaic 80s synth composition and stronger melody.
Much of the series revolves around those two earlier mentioned halves of the political conflicts and fight against evil, with the Dancouga pilots learning to work together while facing military resistance and investigating the secrets behind the organization that's picked them up. The series maintains enough intrigue and momentum from these basic ingredients to be an entertaining enough watch that isn't boring but lacks any impressive moments. It all ends up being lightly likable in all aspects, but in the saturation of anime that just isn't enough of an endorsement - even for mecha fans. And if mecha fans are so desperate as to be looking for niche series like Dancouga Nova, then any recommendations probably don't matter. They'll take whatever has the genre attached. Still, if Dancouga Nova is a sequel that needed to be made, then at least it didn't do the original team any shame. According to MyAnimeList, over twice the amount of people have watched Dancouga Nova over the original series. Those who enjoyed this show enough or are considering watching it, do yourself a favor, buckle down, and watch something "old" - and better.