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I would like to give credit where credit is due. Videos are from YouTube and other sources such as NicoNico while Oricon rankings and other information are translated from the Japanese Wikipedia unless noted.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Taku Iwasaki and Takumi Iwasaki -- Gotchaman ~ In The Name Of Love


Way back when I was a wee lad in the 1970s, I used to remember watching the English-dubbed version of "Gatchaman"(ガッチャマン), re-titled as "Battle of the Planets", and even before then watching the original manga (not reading since I couldn't even handle hiragana then) through the kiddie books my parents had bought me at the old Furuya Japanese food shop in Chinatown. Even with "Battle of the Planets", the instrumental versions of the opening and ending themes were on full display throughout the episodes, and as I got through them weekly, I realized how cool the opening was especially with that sound of tokusatsu theme mixed in with a bit of disco.

Well, back to this decade....my anime buddy told me that the powers-that-be were going to make a new "Gatchaman" anime which he said would be acting as a bit of a sidekick of sorts to the live-action movie of the bird-based team. I took a look at the poster and went "Ohhhhhhhhhkay...". Let's see, there is a high-school girl, a younger girl in a string bikini, a couple of moody guys, a panda (although I heard later that he really doesn't want to be called that), and some androgynous fellow, and there was no sign of a bird anywhere.


The new show was called "Gatchaman: Crowds", and I can probably say that this was not my generation's "Gatchaman". Coming out in 2013, my friend and I saw the first episode, and I couldn't even say that this was a reboot. It was more like a re-boot-it-to-the-ground-crush-it-to-dust-and-reconstruct-plus-add-more-wonky-elements. After viewing the pilot, it was pretty evident that my friend liked it more than I did. I just remarked, "Well, that was indeed different...". And indeed from what I've read on YouTube and other sites, the reaction was pretty darn polarizing.

However, by the time we finally saw it to the end, including the improved finale (apparently, the show underwent a bit of a "Girls und Panzer"/"Evangelion" production crisis), I had to say that I did like it for what it was. I couldn't compare it to the original version at all but it was its own "Gatchaman". And despite the love and hate thrown at it, the anime apparently superseded the live-action movie by a country mile. The cherry on top is that in a few weeks, the sequel to the anime will be rolling out.


I have to say that even more than the opening and ending themes to "Gatchaman: Crowds", I liked the battle theme to the show by Taku Iwasaki and Takumi Iwasaki(岩崎琢・岩崎工)called "Gotchaman ~ In The Name Of Love". And with the slight change in spelling, I can humorouly agree with some of the commenters that this would make for a fine clarion call to the conclusion of a prank (GOTCHA, MAAAAN!), or within the Gatchaman universe, the call that the heroes were just about to pound some armored justice onto Berg Katze.

The Iwasakis (not sure if these guys getting put together was the result of an amazing name coincidence or if they are one and the same) made "Gotchaman" a combination of an emergency broadcast warning, background chase music from a Quinn/Martin-produced detective show, music from "The Matrix" and even a small iota of country hoedown. Takumi actually sings a part of it, but I didn't pay any heed to the words; the music was fine enough for me.


On the soundtrack, there is even the "dance" version of it called "Gatchadance" with a bit more of the techno beat. I kinda wonder whether the Iwasakis had gotten some inspiration from Prince's "Batdance" from the 1989 "Batman". 

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