Wakusei Robo Danguard Ace
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|Planetary Robot Danguard Ace|
Cover of the first DVD volume.
(Wakusei Robo Dangaado A (ehsu))
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Tomoharu Katsumata|
|Written by||Leiji Matsumoto|
|Music by||Shunsuke Kikuchi|
|Original network||Fuji TV|
|Original run||March 6, 1977 – March 26, 1978|
Planetary Robot Danguard Ace (惑星ロボ ダンガードA (エース) Wakusei Robo Dangādo Ēsu), also known as Force Five: Dangard Ace in the United States, is a Japanese science fiction anime series created by Leiji Matsumoto with Dan Kobayashi. It was licensed by Jim Terry Productions, as part of the Force Five promotion, as "Dangard Ace".
English dialog was written for re-dubbing by Lynn Garrison, who then combined episodes into a feature length presentation. This series gained a cult following on the Showtime network during the 1980s. The titular robot also appeared in Marvel Comics' Shogun Warriors series, as well as in the eponymous toy line. In 2009, William Winckler Productions produced three all-new English dubbed movie versions edited from the original series. Winckler, known for Tekkaman the Space Knight, wrote, produced and directed these films, which have been seen on broadband in Japan.
Dangard Ace is Matsumoto's only contribution to Japan's ubiquitous giant robot genre.
Danguard Ace takes place on a future Earth in which natural resources have been depleted. People have begun looking toward other planets to survive, in particular to the fictional tenth planet, Promete. Although people had hoped to peacefully settle there, disaster strikes as the first explorers are destroyed by betrayal.
After this event, an individual named Mr. Doppler leaves toward Promete on his own ship and declares himself Chancellor of the planet. Using Promete's resources, Chancellor Doppler constructs a vast military force greater than that of Earth's. He forbids anyone from approaching the planet, under the insane belief that only he is entitled to it.
To gain control of Promete, the governments of Earth begin constructing massive combat robots. Doppler is able to attack and destroy all of them before they are completed, except for Danguard Ace. The forces sent to attack Danguard's base were destroyed because of the efforts of Captain Dan. Nothing is known of this mysterious man, except that he previously served Doppler while under mind control.
Takuma Ichimonji, son of the man who betrayed the initial Promete exploration team, becomes a cadet at Danguard's base. Ichimonji hopes that he might restore his father's honor by fighting against Doppler's forces.
Some of the main character designs were similar to characters appearing in Space Cruiser Yamato, which was known in the U.S. market as Star Blazers. The Takuma Ichimonji character resembles the Space Cruiser Yamato character Susumu Kodai. The doctor on the show resembles Dr. Sakezo Sado from Space Cruiser Yamato.
Wakusei Robo Danguard Ace was a major influence on the popular anime OVA Gunbuster. Several characters and plot elements of Gunbuster are mirrored from Danguard Ace. The character Noriko from Gunbuster is treated roughly as a cadet, since her father was a famous Admiral, whereas Ichimonji from Danguard Ace is treated in much the same way because his father was a traitor. Both shows feature stoic and demanding trainers: "Coach" in Gunbuster and "Captain Dan" in Danguard Ace. Both shows also feature incomplete robots that were not usable at the onset of the show.
In the early 1980s, a French-dubbed version was released through Jacques Canestrier Productions entitled Danguard - La Conquete des Planetes. However, only the first volume of three episodes were released on VHS.
- Toei Animation
- "Danguard Ace: The Movie Collection: DVD Talk Review of the DVD Video". Dvdtalk.com. Retrieved 2014-03-16.