Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Mars Daybreak Anime Legends|
Genres: Anime & Manga, Animation
Mars is no longer the Red Planet. Now covered in never ending ocean, those who dwell upon the planet are forced to live upon vast ships where crime, poverty and corruption rule. In an attempt to combat the rampant corrupti... more »
A surprise gem in the sea of anime
Anthony J. Smith | Minneapolis, MN | 01/10/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Having no expectations at the outset, Mars Daybreak turned out to be a refreshing, fun anime with colorful characters and a plot that is generally lighthearted but most entertaining. The story's concept centers around a young man named Gram who falls into the clutches of the most notorious pirates on planet Mars (the setting of this story), pirates who possess a bad rap despite their Robinhood-like nature (looking out for the interests of others). And these are not your run-of-the-mill everyday pirates--all pirate characters (human, animal, and alien alike) are quite unique with interesting personalities, skills, and traits. Without going into any great detail, the story is chalk full of mecha action, swash-buckling sword fighting, high-speed ship chases, espionage and double-crosses, plenty of comedy, and deep-seated romance. I thoroughly enjoyed this series because of the adventurous plot that centers around a mysterious Mars secret treasure that Gram unknowingly holds the key to opening, the lighthearted nature of the action (no gory blood or extreme violence), the sincere development of some of the main characters in the story, the colorful and well-drawn animation, and feel-good feelings one comes away with after watching any number of the episodes (not to mention the great music in the opening and closing songs). I would highly recommend this anime for most viewers (as I am a fairly new anime viewer, here is a brief rundown of anime series I have completed and my personal ratings to provide some relevance to this review: Ruroni Kenshin--9.3 out of 10; Basilisk--6.5 out of 10; Full Metal Alchemist--8.7 out of ten; Neon Genesis Evangelion--7.3 out of 10; Mars Daybreak--8.5 out of 10)."
E. A Solinas | MD USA | 01/02/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The concept is pretty simple -- Robin-Hood-style pirates on Mars, in an unspecified future time when the whole planet is covered in seas.
And fortunately its simplicity is part of "The Mars Daybreak's" charm -- comedy, plenty of action, magical necklaces and big underwater mechas. And while some of the characters never quite endear themselves (the snotty Vestemona), the imaginative underwater adventures and likable pirates are plenty of fun.
Mars' economy is crumbling, and both food and work are hard to come by. Former dockworker Gram gets swept off a city-ship while rescuing a pal. His necklace starts glowing, and he is scooped up by a mysterious "round buckler" (read: underwater mecha). Unfortunately Earth Forces attacks him, thinking that he's with the pirate submarine Ship of Aurora -- and soon Gram finds himself as the Ship of Aurora's newest pirate.
He quickly becomes invaluable to the crew (for his super-powerful Round Buckler AND his brilliant cooking skills), but is unaware that a childhood friend named Vestemona -- now an Earth Forces cadet -- has returned to Mars and is obsessed with getting him to mend his ways.
But when Gram's necklace is revealed to be a Mars Aborigine treasure, the Ship of Aurora finds itself on the trail of an ancient treasure -- which is also wanted by cruel mercenary pirate Kubernes. And they have plenty of problems already -- ghost ships, seaborne brides, disastrous parties, mutinies, idiotic communists, baby rays, and the Earth President's daughter, who is smitten with Gram and insists on joining the crew (much to the Mars president's chagrin).
But when Vestemona's obsession with Gram leads her to disobey orders, she ends up pronounced dead and captured by Kubernes. But as she and Gram settle their differences, the Ship of Aurora is threatened by Earth Forces -- and it may the end of the line for the jolly pirates, unless Gram can save them.
"The Mars Daybreak" has no deep message to impart, no tormented heroes, no realistic action, no complex storylines, and (admittedly) not a hugely imaginative concept. But its lack pf pretensions is one of the reasons it's such an endearing series -- it's a simple adventure yarn with floating cities and mecha.
Along the way it develops a plot arc -- mysterious artifacts, treasure, Martian history, and a villain (Kubernes) who actually seems halfway competent (unlike the idiot president) and has a Round Buckler shaped like a mermaid. Lots of underwater battles, killer construction equipment, sword fights and battles with Earth Forces. In fact, the final few episodes become downright grim, as Gram and Vestemona becomes the only things between the pirates and death.
But fortunately "Mars Daybreak" never takes itself entirely seriously -- most of the episodes focus on the quirky pirates. We get lots of comic relief, the required onsen episode with required double-entendres ("Wow, I guess mine IS twice as big as yours"), some haunted-house spookiness and lots of good-natured internal clashes (the captain becomes obsessed with a hit-and-run sub).
Gram is a likable hero: mellow, friendly, and honest about having no life goals except making enough money to live on. The pirates are a colourful bunch as well -- stern but kindly Captain Elizabeth, stoic Sea Witch Ester, vaguely immature Aki, timid psychic Megumi, chilly pilot Yagami, and a talking cat and porpoise. Even the Earth Forces officers are well-done (including the aptly-named Captain Doolittle).
The one flaw? Vestemona redeems herself somewhat late in the series, but before that she's a self-righteous, snotty brat who despises everything. She and Gram eventually fall in love, but she practically stalks him across Mars first -- and tries to convince him to go back to being starving and unemployed.
Fortunately Vestemona is not enough to taint the rest of "The Mars Daybreak," which succeeds in being a gung-ho sci-fi story with an action-comedy twist. Definitely worth seeing."