Post by Old Man Dream on Apr 28, 2020 13:39:10 GMT
An entry in the "super robot" genre of mecha anime, Voltes V focuses on five talented youths specially trained to pilot five combat vehicles that form the mecha Voltes V in order to combat the alien Boazan Empire who plan to take over Earth. Each episode of the series features the pilots of Voltes V taking on a different Beast Warrior created by the Boazans in "monster of the day" formatted plots to attempt destroying Voltes. Throughout the conflict, the three Go brothers who pilot parts of Voltes V try to locate the whereabouts of their missing father, Kentaro, responsible for creating the mecha.
Before I dabble into my thoughts on Voltes V, I do have to comment on a certain aspect of the show's appeal in that this series is apparently quite popular in the Philippines, strong enough where a live-action adaptation of the series is currently in development for the country's viewers. There is history to this within the country as during the 1970s when Voltes and other Japanese mecha titles were airing in the Philippines, the country's then authoritarian President, Ferdinand Marcos, had banned a number of anime titles, including Voltes V, from airing due to supposed concerns about their "excessive violence." However, there was speculation at the time Marcos banned Voltes V due to the anime's plot having underlying themes of revolution and rebellion. By 1986, opposition to Marcos' rule from the People Power Revolution led to Voltes becoming a popular mascot of the revolters and following Marcos being overthrown, Voltes became a national symbol of rebellion against the Marcos regime and has been a fixture of Filipino culture ever since. This is certainly an interesting historical development for an anime within another country's culture.
As far as the quality of Voltes V goes, I guess I'll at least offer up my positives of the series first as it does have some story elements to it that stick out from many "super robot" anime made during its time period. First, the series wasn't afraid to kill off major characters at points throughout its run. Characters that the Voltes team are close are killed at points throughout its run and this lends it some decent drama that help raise the stakes of humanity's conflict with the Boazan. Second, the series explores themes such as prejudice and revolution that get dabbled into as more about Boazan society is revealed throughout the show's run. Third, there is a major plot twist revealed about the upbringing of some major characters within Voltes V that does make sense when considering the technology of the Voltes being quite advanced compared to much of what Earth has to offer to oppose the Boazan threat.
Praises aside, Voltes V is still largely a product of its time as it sticks firmly to many of the typical cliches of the "super robot" genre common during its era. It dabbles quite heavily into "monster of the day" episodic plots throughout much of its run which can limit its appeal to those not fans of the plot formula and its characters largely stick with whatever archetypes they are defined by without having much dimension to their personalities. The plot has its sloppy moments with certain events that transpire during its run and things usually feel a bit too convenient with how the Voltes V team are able to overcome a "monster of the day" that is seemingly overcoming them. The animation is also quite dated with rough detailing of its mecha and character designs, as well as liberal use of animation shortcuts being employed.
While having some story elements that stick out from other mecha titles of its era and having its historical significance in Filipino culture, I was largely feeling indifferent to Voltes V as a viewer of it throughout its run as many of its storytelling cliches were typical of other titles of its ilk and much of them haven't really aged well thus it could have limited appeal to modern audiences. Your mileage may vary with reception to this series depending on your interests dabbling into old-school mecha anime.
Rating: 5.5 of 10
Someday I’ll be gone To somewhere that we belong And God has never played his role 'Cause I’m the one who saves my soul It’s a perfect world we’re longing for
Wow, that's something cool to learn, an anime becoming a cultural symbol in another country. It's a sentai super robot series that has frequent deaths. Wouldn't expect that from looking at the picture before diving into the review.