The Nihon Review - Anime Reviews & Editorials


Title: Gravion aka Choujuushin Gravion aka Super Heavy God Gravion
Genre: Action
Company: Gonzo
Format: 13 episodes
Dates: 7 Nov 2002 – 16 Dec 2002

Synopsis: In humanity’s not too distant future, the Earth faces invasion by the mysterious intergalactic monsters, the Zeravire. With no other option to turn to, the world must put its fate into the hands of the mysterious Klein Sandman and his powerful machine, Gravion. Piloted by the Grand Knights, and powered by gravity, the hope of the future lies in Gravion’s hands.

The Highlights
Originality: Not in this anime.
Visual aesthetic: A Gonzo eyesore.
Character types: Shallow; all characterization is obvious within a split second.
Ingenuity: Nonexistent.
Epic flair: Seriously lacking.

The advantage of the mecha genre is that it is not so difficult to mix around with any of the various formulas and come out with something relatively unique. Unfortunately, just because such anime can make a setup convenient, doesn’t mean that it is bound to work. Robots work with practically everything, but they don’t serve as foolproof buffers for conflicting themes. This is why anime like Gravion tend to fail, especially when a serious identity crisis is the least of its problems.

To say an anime is made up of two dimensional stereotypes one thing. To be able to figure out every characters’ backgrounds and personalities by just by a quick glance is another. From the very beginning, it is painfully obvious who fits the roles of the tsundere, the shy clutz, the diva, the enigmatic girl, and so on. By the end of the series, absolutely none of the characters comes full circle or develops in any meaningful way (except for their grotesquely large breasts). There are shallow attempts to bring forth genuine character development, but it’s all just phoned in. These interactions are interchangeable with those of any harem anime out there.

The visuals are just as unimpressive. At this point, I think it is safe to say that Gonzo‘s animation division is overrated. With rare exceptions, all their animation work amounts to little more than lackluster visuals plastered with gaudy CG. Even the mecha designer Okawara Kunio reaches an all time low point here. And considering a career as long as his, that’s saying a lot. Regardless, I don’t blame him since he is working with a robot that is… just there. As common as robots are, it means nothing without knowing how to make them integral to the story as a whole. With the amount of effort put into integrating mecha, comedy and drama the inverse of what was put into something that’s actually good like Dai-Guard, it doesn’t really matter what anything here really looks like.

What makes Gravion stick out in terms of poor quality is that, not only was it unable to put together a compelling story by its own merits, but also lacked a quality that can still make any action story work, epic flair. Dai-Guard works without this quality because it has character chemistry in its stead, but with nothing but well-endowed cardboard cutouts for a cast, Gravion is nothing but a harem anime featuring a giant robot.

“Dull, generic, predictable, and nothing you haven’t seen before” are words one can attribute to this series. It is not uncommon for there to be unoriginal and unambitious anime, but only a few offer no reason in the slightest to be watched. Gravion, is one of them.

The Rating: 2

Reviewed by: Kavik Ryx

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