Cover art for the DVD Complete Series Collection
|Genre||Mecha, Military, Supernatural|
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Ryōsuke Takahashi
Gorō Taniguchi (assistant director)
|Music by||Kuniaki Haishima|
|Original network||Television Osaka|
|Original run||October 4, 1998 – March 28, 1999|
|Original run||October 1998 – May 2000|
Gasaraki (ガサラキ?) is a mecha anime television series produced by Sunrise. It was directed by Ryousuke Takahashi, who also co-created the series along with Sunrise (Hajime Yatate). Goro Taniguchi was the assistant director. The screenplay was written by Toru Nozaki.
The series centers on Yushiro Gowa who pilots a bipedal weapons system known as a TA, short for Tactical Armor. Much of the initial plot is driven by means of news reports.
Set in the near-future the series is formed around political narratives that concern a fictional war between the US and the fictional Middle Eastern country of Belgistan. An influential Japanese family, the Gowa, produce a bipedal weapon, the TA. When US military forces attempt to seize the capital they are systematically wiped out by what appear to be rival TAs. The Gowa Family seizes this opportunity to demonstrate their weapon system, and civilian pilot Yuushiro Gowa and the military squad to which he is attached are deployed to Belgistan. There, he meets rival TA pilot Miharu, with whom he seems to share a deep spiritual bond.
The series has a mix of futuristic and historical narratives and includes elements of Japanese culture, such as Noh and Shinto, rigid family hierarchies, corruption of government by Zaibatsu, and Samurai appear throughout the series.
In ancient Japan the Gowa family created a demonic Armor in order to defeat their enemies. Hundreds of years later this armor is exploited by the Gowa in the development of Tactical Armor for military usage and the usurpation of Japan.
- Yushiro Gowa (豪和 ユウシロウ Gōwa Yūshirō?)
- The main character of Gasaraki is a quiet, withdrawn teenage boy who is viewed as a tool through which his elder brothers in the Gowa family seek to further their goals. He is a member of a special JSDF unit charged with testing the TA system. As a test pilot, he is found to possess the ability to synchronize to an extraordinary degree with the TA hardware, and in particular with the Mile One synthetic muscle tissue (a process described as a "Mental Burst"). At the behest of his family, he is also a performer of a fictional, mystical form of Noh theatre, the dance of Gasara, through which he is able to open dimensional gateways. Yushiro Gowa is voiced by Nobuyuki Hiyama in Japanese and Chris Patton in English.
- Miharu (ミハル Miharu?)
- Much like Yuushiro, Miharu is a quiet, introverted girl, who is a test subject for the organization known as Symbol. She pilots the organization's version of the TA, referred to as Fake. She's well aware of her role but does not seem to mind very much until she meets Yuushiro, who awakens in her the desire for self-determination. Miharu is voiced by Mami Kingetsu in Japanese and Monica Rial in English.
- Kazukiyo Gowa (豪和 一清 Gōwa Kazukiyo?)
- The eldest of the Gowa brothers, he's very ambitious and cleverly plots his rise to power first in the family by replacing his father as master of the house and then in the world by weaving a complex political and economic web. He's obsessed with obtaining the power of the mysterious Gasaraki, which he believes will give him the ultimate supremacy, and will stop at nothing to acquire it. Kazukiyo Gowa is voiced by Yūji Takada in Japanese and Andy McAvin in English.
- Kiyotsugu Gowa (豪和 清継 Gōwa Kiyotsugu?)
- The second son of Daizaburo Gowa, he's a man of science and an accomplished researcher. He's the genius behind the development of the TAs that he considers his lifework. To further his studies, he's ready to follow Kazukiyo's sinister plans, disregarding any danger that might befall his relatives or co-workers. Kiyotsugu Gowa is voiced by Sho Hayami in Japanese and Jason Douglas in English.
- Kiyoharu Gowa (豪和 清春 Gōwa Kiyoharu?)
- The third son of Daizaburo Gowa, he's an expert analyst and mediator, qualities that make him a successful businessman. He agrees to support Kazukiyo even though he does not approve of some of his means. Kiyoharu Gowa is voiced by Isshin Chiba in Japanese and Brett Weaver in English.
- Misuzu Gowa (豪和 美鈴 Gōwa Misuzu?)
- She's the youngest in the family and has a close relationship only with her father and older brother Yuushiro since they're only a few years apart. She knows something is not right in the family and tries to break through her sheltered upbringing to learn the truth about her beloved brother and ultimately herself. Misuzu Gowa is voiced by Satomi Koorogi in Japanese and Hilary Haag in English.
- Meth (メス Mesu?)
- A council member of Symbol he appears to be one of the top figures, taking orders directly from the President. He shows great interest in Miharu's development and well being, coming to view her as a cherished person and not just a means to an end. Meth is voiced by Natsuo Tokuhiro in Japanese and Mike Kleinhenz in English.
- Phantom (ファントム・F・フィーゼラー Fantomu Efu Fīzerā?)
- Symbol's CEO Phantom is voiced by Issei Miyazaki in Japanese and Illich Guardiola in English.
Gasaraki consists of 25 television episodes which were first aired on TV Osaka from October 4, 1998, to March 28, 1999. It was released on VHS and DVD in North America and the UK by ADV Films. Nozomi Entertainment has re-licensed the series and will be re-released in 2012.
On January 13, 2000, the video game, Tactical Armor Custom Gasaraki, was released for the PlayStation.
|01||"On the Ancient Stage of Stone"
|Toru Nozaki||October 4, 1998|
|The Japanese Self Defense Force 3rd Experimentation Company tests Tactical Armors. The Gowa Corporate Group attempt to summon a force using the dancing of the fourth Gowa son, Yushiro. During his dance Yushiro has a vision of a woman, Miharu, who convinces him to stop. Meanwhile, an explosion occurs in the middle eastern country of Belgistan.|
"Jo no Mai" (序ノ舞)
|Toru Nozaki||October 11, 1998|
|The United Nations send forces into Belgistan but are defeated. The Gowa family ponder what caused Yushiro to stop his dance. Kiyoharu Gowas presents a test run of the Tactical Armors to the Japanese Government.|
|Toru Nozaki||October 18, 1998|
|The Gowa family conspires to have the Tactical Armors sent to Belgistan. Belgistan, using Tactical Armors known as Fakes provided by the international corporation Symbol defeat an American tank battalion approaching the country.|
|Yuichiro Takeda||October 25, 1998|
|The JSSDF 3rd Experimentation Company arrives in Belgistan and is sent to the experimental site where the explosion occurred, finding it similar to the stage of stone where Yushiro performed his dance. Yushiro goes into a trance and attempts to perform it again, but is nearly killed by a sniper. Symbol sends Miharu to the site leading a group of Fakes to gauge her and Yushiro's reaction to one another.|
|Chiaki Konaka||November 1, 1998|
|The Tactical Armors twice battle Symbol's Fakes, managing to procure a sample. The media obtains live footage of the battle, broadcasting it to the world.|
"Ayatsuri Ningyō" (操り人形)
|Toru Nozaki||November 8, 1998|
|Symbol stages a coup, overthrowing the Belgistan government, which immediately agrees to a cease-fire. While in Belgistan Yushiro encounters Miharu in an ancient church. The two are chased by Symbol and are helped first by Yushiro's colleagues, then by the mysterious Phantom.|
|Yuichiro Takeda||November 15, 1998|
|Phantom assists Yushiro and returning to the JSSDF, which plan to head back to Japan. Symbol conspires to recover their sample, first by attempting to prevent them from taking off, then by sending fighter planes from a neighboring country after the plane once it is in the air. By using the Tactical Armor while in mid-air, Yushiro is able to destroy the fighter planes, ensuring the plane safe passage to Japan.|
|Toru Nozaki||November 22, 1998|
|The 3rd Experimentation Company return to Japan, but are held in confinement in anticipation of the public announcement of the TA's existence. Meanwhile, Lt. Colonel Hirokawa introduces Kazukiyo Gowa to Kei Nishida, who seeks to overthrow the Japanese Government and strengthen Japan's well-being. Miharu leads a pair of Fakes to Gowa's laboratories in order to take back the sample that Gowa had procured. While there Miharu discovers that the real Yushiro died years before and tells this to Yushiro while escaping.|
|Chiaki Konaka||November 29, 1998|
|Gowa fails in its attempt to prevent the Symbol Fakes from escaping the city. Yushiro confronts his 'mother', who tells him to see Master Sorachi at the Gowa's abandoned storehouse. His younger sister heads there after him along with Ataka, one of Yushiro's fellow Tactical Armor pilots. While at the Storehouse Yushiro finds the dead body of the real Yushiro and finds a kugai, an ancient robot-like being in the basement. Miharu heads there with two Fakes.|
|Chiaki Konaka||December 6, 1998|
|Yushiro goes into a trance and operates the Kugai, easily defeating Miharu and her colleague's Fakes. Yushiro and Miharu leave to head to Kyoto and find the truth. Meanwhile, the JSSDF attempts an experiment involving four Tactical Armors which goes horribly wrong.|
|Toru Nozaki||December 13, 1998|
|Yushiro and Miharu head through the woods while under pursuit and meet up with Misuzu and Ataka. The four are captured by Gowa's troops soon after. The 3rd Experimentation Company is recruited to stop a Tactical Armor piloted by an out of control, biologically enhanced soldier but find themselves overmatched.|
|Yuichiro Takeda||December 20, 1998|
|The captured Miharu and the Kugai are put in the hands of Yushiro's brother Kiyotsugu. Yushiro rejoins the 3rd Experimentation Company and manages to successfully stop the out of control TA pilot.|
|Toru Nozaki||December 27, 1998|
|Experiments on Miharu and the Kugai commence as Yushiro grows more suspicious of the recent events and his family's involvement. Daizaburo demands to know Kazukiyo's intentions, then forces the rest of the family to either side with him or Kazukiyo. His remaining sons choose Kazukiyo, making him the new head of the family. Daizburo assists Yushiro and Miharu in escaping.|
|Toru Nozaki||January 10, 1999|
|Kazukiyo meets with Nishida again, who surprises him with knowledge of the Kugustu Clan and Gasaraki. Yushiro and Miharu continue in their journey to Kyoto. Sorachi reveals the truth about the real Yushiro's death to Misuzu.|
|Toru Nozaki||January 17, 1999|
|Arriving in Kyoto, Yushiro and Miharu witness the history of the Watanabe Clan, for whom they were pilots for the Kugai. When the Emperor orders the Kugai handed over, Tsuna Watanabe takes over the clan and refuses, instead plotting to head to the capital with the Kugai to overthrow the Emperor.|
|Toru Nozaki||January 24, 1999|
|The flashback to the Watanabe Clan continues. The Watanabe Clan attacks the capital, but Miharu kills Tsuna when he attacks Yushiro, stopping the conflict. As a result of the flashbacks, Miharu goes catatonic.|
|Toru Nozaki||January 31, 1999|
|Yushiro and Miharu hide out in the Japanese slums, where they are helped by Wan, a gang member. Wan is actually a former member of Symbol and is recruited by Symbol to capture the two. Meanwhile, Kazukiyo, Hirokawa and Nishida plan their next move with the TAs, knowing that upcoming grain export news from the U.S. is sure to cause panic among the populace.|
|Yuichiro Takeda||February 7, 1999|
|Toru Nozaki||February 14, 1999|
|Chiaki Konaka||February 21, 1999|
|Toru Nozaki||February 28, 1999|
|Toru Nozaki||March 7, 1999|
|Toru Nozaki||March 14, 1999|
|Toru Nozaki||March 21, 1999|
|Toru Nozaki||March 28, 1999|
- "Right Stuf/Nozomi Adds More Dirty Pair, Gasaraki, Nadesico". Anime News Network. Retrieved 1 July 2011.