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Episode 1: Gain and Gainer

 

Review by Brian Shea

August 21, 2013

 

Summary

 

Princess Ana Medaiyu reads in a book about how the Earth suffered a cataclysm due to civilization advancing too quickly. Ana runs off, excited for a dance, against the pleas of her retainer/tutor, Lioubov Smettana. A man named Gain Bijou enters the city looking for work and is told about an upcoming festival celebrating the winter solstice and the idol singer Meeya Laujin. Gain is held at gunpoint for claiming he comes from the disappeared city of Novis, but quickly escapes. A teenager named Gainer Sanga plays a video game with a console that he puts over his eyes and hears a news story about someone trying to escape Domepolis who died. The newscaster calls Exodus, the movement to depart Domepolis, that of cowards. Gainer is challenged to another video game battle by his online friend Cynthia Lane. Gainer wins and Cynthia is called away. He receives a message telling him that he's been awarded with the game king title due to winning 200 straight battles. Later, Gainer sits in class, admiring his fellow student Sara Kodama. Suddenly a blonde-haired woman from the Siberian Railway police, Adette Kistler, enters the classroom, asking for Gainer. Adette tells Gainer that he's suspected of being a part of the Exodus movement. Adette takes Gainer away and throws him in a cell with other people. Adette's boss and Siberian Police chief Yassaba Jin tells her the cell is full and asks if she actually wore her outfit in public. Later, some bread and water is dropped off in the cell and Gainer's fellow cellmates eat. The cell door opens and Gain is thrown in, unconscious. At the school, Sara and fellow classmate Bello Korissha talk about the upcoming festival and some engines they found. More food is brought into the cell and Gain asks for some. Gainer asks when he's going to be released. Outside, the festival begins. Gainer gives Gain some bread he saved him while he was asleep. The next time a guard opens the cell door, Gain punches him and knocks him out. He takes the guard's keys and asks Gainer if he's coming. Gain comments on the people of Domepolis not taking action even when they have reason to complain. Gainer decides to come with him and the two tell each other their names. They flee and head up some stairs, then outside the building. Gain steals a vehicle and drives off. Gain asks Gainer if he is a part of Exodus. London IMA official Asuham Boone contacts Yassaba about Gain Bijou and Yassaba says he's already been caught. Asuham, claiming that Gain goes under the alias Black Southern Cross, believes he may have purposely gotten himself captured. Adette thinks that Gain could be an Exodus specialist and wonders if he's already done something. Gain and Gainer approach the festival.

 

Gain feigns being drunk and along with Gainer is able to knock out the guards. Gain has Gainer carry his bullet proof coat with him and they break their way into a mansion of Duke Medaiyu. Inside they pass by some old Overmen and come across a large white one. Gain asks Gainer to open up the cockpit, which he's able to do easily. Gain gives Gainer the keys and asks him to start up the Overman. He thinks the Duke took it for some hidden reason. The Overman takes Gainer in and asks for an ID, which Gainer inputs as "King Gainer." Adette leads two Dogodzo silhouette engines. She thinks Gain is heading to Duke Medaiyu's but doesn't think he can use an Overman. The Overman starts up. Gain tells Gainer he has a talent and that he can take it from here, but Gainer is able to stand up the Overman on his own. He accidentally throws Gain into the ceiling and then catches him. Suddenly the Siberian Railway's Dogodzo forces blast through the mansion wall and head towards King Gainer. Adette tells Gain to surrender. Gainer hopes the Overman is fully charged. Gain tells Gainer to let him in but Gainer instead has the Overman flee from the Dogodzos. Gain tells Gainer to set the unit to fly. King Gainer shoots a hole in the ceiling with a photon mat ring and is able to fly out of it as the Dogodzos pursue. Gainer shoots out another photon mat ring that enables him to escape further. Meanwhile, Ana is excited about heading out to see the festival. Suddenly a hole appears in the floor and the King Gainer rises out of it. Gain asks Ana if she'd like to see the festival. Ana runs into the cockpit of King Gainer with her three pet squirrels. Gain tells Lioubov that he's going to follow the princess' instructions and borrow her. King Gainer leaves the building and Gain tells Gainer to head to the Wulgusk open-air station and find the Five Wise Men in charge of the festival. King Gainer flies through the city and lands nearby where it lets off Gain. Gain tells Gainer that the Five Wise Men are on the silhouette mammoth craft Bachclone. Gain gets into a silhouette engine and tells Gainer to hurry. Ana suggest looking at the festival map to find Bachclone. A Siberian police officer named Jaboli tells Yassaba that Gain and Gainer have escaped, but Adette is after them. Jaboli comments on Meeya coming out and Yassaba wonders what's going on with that cheesy pop star. A hologram of Meeya appears over the city as her entourage passes. A Siberian Railway soldier asks about whether she is an Exodus supporter; another thinks they are just using her. Sara jumps on a vehicle with Bello, asking him if he saw the flying Overman. Sara contacts Bachclone, asking if the silhouette engines have been launched. The crowd, as well as Ana excitingly watches Meeya perform. Suddenly shots ring out towards King Gainer, which dodges the shots. A Dogodzo jumps near King Gainer. Gainer tries to contact Bachclone but has trouble due to Ana's pets. Other silhouette engines burst out of the ground and Gain tells one of them that the Overman with hair belongs to the Gauli squad. Gainer calls out orders to silhouette mammoths. Bello drops off Sara who gets in a Panther silhouette engine. Gainer is surprised at the movement within Domepolis and finds that Bachclone is pulling out his home unit. Gain asks Gainer to cover him and use the chain gun in King Gainer's hand. King Gainer is able to lift up the approaching silhouette engine with ease. King Gainer tosses aside the Dogodzo and dodges its oncoming shots. Ana tells Gainer to use the weapon in King Gainer's hands but it doesn't work. He swings at the Dogodzo with his chain gun. Sara watches the Overman battling from above and talks to Gain. She claims that they need to try to leave the dome during Meeya's festival. Adette punches at King Gainer with her Dogodzo, but Gainer is able to charge up his chain gun and slice the Dogodzo in half. Gain orders the Gauli Squad Panthers to protect each unit and pull out of the dome. Gain tells Gainer to take position to protect Exodus. Inside the cockpit, Gainer doesn't feel that well, being quite exhausted. A pilot named Hughes, who's in charge of the Gauli squad comes to greet Gain and tells him he's doing a great job as an Exodus specialist. Sara says that Duke Medaiyu is also against the Yapan Exodus, not just the Siberian Railway, and that everyone should be cautious. Meeya's festival continues. Jaboli reports to Yassaba, telling him Adette can't move. Yassaba wonders if Meeya has actually incited the Exodus since she's singing Yapan songs.

 

Commentary

 

Overman King Gainer marks Yoshiyuki Tomino's first non-Gundam work since 1998's Brain Power'd. Many things harken back to some of his former works. We're immediately thrown into the middle of things and there are numerous characters, mecha and terms thrown about which can make things a bit hard to comprehend. Giving the two principal characters in Gainer and Gain such similar names doesn't help. Kenichi Yoshida and the other designers bring some good character designs, and Bello's design appears inspired by Mirao Kyao from L.Gaim. King Gainer also has an interesting design with its dreadlocks. The hilarious opening sequence, featuring a number of characters and mecha doing "the monkey" dance makes it look that this show will be more in line with his light hearted works than his darker shows. The show also has an interesting concept and setting. Overall a good first episode, although they try to throw a bit too much at us.

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

3.5 out of 5 stars
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