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|
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 Battleship Yamato, which was known in the U.S. market as Star Blazers. The Takuma Ichimonji character resembles the Space Battleship Yamato character Susumu Kodai. The doctor on the show resembles Dr. Sakezo Sado from Space Battleship Yamato.
It was released in English three times, first by M&M Productions under the title "The Planet Robot Danguard Ace" that saw limited release in Hawaii and The Philippines. The only remaining recording of this dub was a Story Record LP released in Japan.  It was then licensed and redubbed by Jim Terry Productions, as part of the Force Five promotion and was rereleased later by combined episodes into a feature-length presentation. This film edit gained a cult following on Showtime during the 1980s.
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 and a three volume DVD release in the United States.
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.. It was released in Hong Kong and Italy in 1978 and was the first anime ever broadcast on a private channel in Italy.  It also saw a 1986 release in both South Korea and Taiwan.