New Getter Robo comes from a time long gone. It is an echo of a time before even Gundam was on the scene. Back then the soon-to-be-genre of mecha anime was only really just beginning to get off the ground. There had been a couple of shows about robots and the like but it was really the work of Go Nagai that established the stereotypes and clichés that fans have come to expect of giant robot shows. One such example is the cry for the special weapon to be used. His second was the original Getter Robo from 1974, that is said to be the first to use the (now) standard convention of small robots/vehicles combining to make the big, ultimate robot. New Getter Robo is a update/reimagining/remake of the original work that has spawned so many sequels, remakes and rip-offs already.
Professor Saotome, an old sandal-wearing scientist — as well as members of his family — have been working on perfecting a robot, the Getter Robo, to fight off mysterious beasties that keep attacking where they work. However every time they send out this robot the pilots invariably end up dead or in really bad shape. Step in Ryoma, a young man who lives by the way of his fists, beating up people, usually the local yakuza, for little reward. Ryoma is kidnapped by Saotome to pilot the getter robo. Eventually psychopathic insurgent fighter/terrorist Hayato comes looking for them and becomes another one of the pilots for the robo and as destiny would have it, the robo nearly falls on Benkai, a former bandit turned religious figure that is also recruited into this merry band.
All of this is very old school. The show is drawn in an older way, and I’m not entirely sure whether it was done that way on purpose or because of budget constraints but I lean toward the former. Also old school is the amount of violence and gore on display with Hayato beating someone to death with his bare hands with a lot of red ink flying around the screen at the time. There is also a scene where one of our three pilots throws up in his helmet. In terms of the music I hope you like the opening theme because you will hear it a lot as it also features as the main action track as well.
At the end of watching the entire series as put out by Madman I wasn’t impressed. Sure it had lashings of the old school that I enjoy but at the finale of it all I had stopped watching for the fun of it and watched it only for review completeness. Yes, there is a story there but it took awhile to go anywhere and really it’s only there to string together more biff between robots and demons. It was nice of Madman to put out the whole series in one volume without the usual delay of a new volume turned out bi-monthly like other titles, but with New Getter Robo will anyone actually care?