Minimalist, Clever, Very Dry
Timothy Perper | Philadelphia PA USA | 02/26/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Panda-Z" is a clever parody of "Mazinger Z," one of the classic Japanese Giant Robot anime. If pandas made giant robots, well, they'd look like pandas, right? And so they do, and have Pantaron Panda wearing a dashing red bandana controlling his giant fighting device from the open cockpit in Panda_Z's head.
The only problem is that Panda-Z is utterly useless and all the Pandas and their robots are hopeless incompetents. In each 5-minute episode, things never work out right, not for the Pandas or their even dumber enemies... In one episode, Panda-Z launches a one-two "ROCKET PUNCH!" against the enemy, and his two arms fly off like missiles, effectively putting the enemy out of commission. Then Panda-Z walks over to his two hands lying on the ground, but now he can't pick them up. Slowly the sun sets and the shadows get longer, and Panda-Z just stands looking at his hands on the ground as the episode ends.
All the episodes are like that. They open with a bizarre premise treated as completely normal, and then things run totally out of control. Satire? Well, yes, of course - though it'll help if you're familiar with the cliches of Giant Robot and Mecha anime. The animation is very simple, and Panda-Z proves that one can do some very clever things with minimalist animation techniques.
Kids will probably love Panda-Z, but serious-minded grown-ups might grumble about it being so silly. But that's the whole point: real life is also pretty silly. So it gets five stars because it does what it's supposed to do perfectly.
PandaZ kicks ass
Mr. Stephen L. Silverwood | 10/17/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The other reviews make fair comments to an extent. I will admit that there is a very short amount of animation for your money.
But this product is fantastic.
Yes, you do need to know the background of the show (if you really knew your Japanese/anime culture then you would be off to a good start) to really appreciate it properly, but if you can't see the fun in this cartoon then you are probably just too old/slow and your cultural codes are out of date.
This package includes a seriously cool and collectable free toy. The design is very clean-looking, very cute and post-modern in a good way. I want more."