3 November 2000 | dwhitman
A strange and wonderful blend
I've seen the 1st 4 episodes on DVD, and it leaves me anxious for more.
Gasaraki is a blend of very realistic mecha warfare with Shinto mysticism, recent geopolitical history and Noh theater. If this sounds strange...well, it is. But it works, very well.
The series is organized sort of as an unfolding mystery, confusing at first, and as questions are answered, more questions pop up. We've got Yushiro Gawa, who is a crack mecha pilot, but (perhaps more importantly) a Noh Shite. The extended Gowa family run a weapons conglomerate, and are willing to manipulate politics to generate opportunities to show off their new TA mecha weapons platform. They're also conducting experiments on Yushiro as he Noh dances; his dance causes strange gravity anomolies.
...and some other organization seems to be developing very similar mecha systems and gravity effects. We're being set up for later conflict between these two groups.
The artwork of Gasaraki is wonderful; realistic hard edged military hardware juxtaposed against a delicate garden with koi swimming in a pool or traditional Japanese architecture. The Noh theater segments are otherworldly and haunting.
Check this one out.