Mazinkaiser SKL Episode 3
What this is about: Watching all of the anime shows so you don’t have to! While I have already finished off my year-end review of 2010 anime shows, there are a handful of shows that have become available in the past few months. For more information about me and my reviews, click here.
Series Premise: Mazinkaiser SKL (“Skull”) is a three-part original video animation based on the Mazinkaiser series by Go Nagai. The first episode was released in January 2011, and the second episode in February 2011, final episode in April 2011. Machine Island, which is in a state of perpetual war between three different robot armies, has been separated from the rest of the world by a gravity curtain. When the stability of the gravity curtain is about to fail, all life on Earth is threatened. The deadly Skull Force has been sent in to remedy the situation, including the two-man giant robot wonder of Mazinkaiser SKL.
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ep. tl;dr review: Giant robots fight and Mazinkaiser saves the day; Hey, what else did you expect?
Episode Summary: All appears lost as Mazinkaiser is out of commission, Garan’s army is wearing away at Octagon army, and the gravity curtain is on the verge of failing. But Ken and Ryo arise from their watery grave to confront Garan once more, and find a deadly opening when Garan is distracted as Zombie Kiba slay’s his right-hand woman, Himiko. Tsubasa comes to the rescue of the failing Octagon forces in her Wingle robot, but it appears it may be too late as the gravity curtain begins to collapse. Ken and Ryo guide the Mazinkaiser into battle against Kiba and his Iron Kaiser, sacrificing themselves so that Earth may survive. Or something like that.
My Reaction: Does anyone else remember the TBS late-night movie program from a few years back called Movies For Guys Who Like Movies, where the manliest of adrenaline-filled movies competed for the attention of roid-screaming, beer-guzzling, fist-pumping men? Well, Mazinkaiser SKL would easily fit into that lineup, right next to Red Heat or Universal Soldier or Rambo: First Blood.
This ain’t for wussies as the “good” guys and the bad guys duke it out in giant robots, even Tsubasa grows some balls in this episode as well. Honestly, don’t think too hard when watching this series, or don’t try to pick apart the plot too much, because that’s not really the point. In fact, I don’t really care much about the story itself, which doesn’t seem to make a whole heck of a lot of sense, and some of the subtleties of the main character’s actions are probably lost on me. It doesn’t help that I am not steeped in the giant robot Go Nagai universe, so some of what may have gone on before the OVA series escapes me (also, forgive me if I get various character/giant robot details wrong). But no matter, just sit back with a bowl of popcorn and watch the big mechanical robots clobber each other as the world falls apart around them, that’s what’s important here.
FINAL SERIES GRADE: B — At just three episodes long, this OVA series would have been rushed with anything less, and would have grown tiring with anything more. But at an hour and a half of pulse-pounding action, it holds together rather well. As long as you don’t think too hard about the story, sit back and enjoy the non-stop action. Hey, it’s a guy flick, and doesn’t pretend to be anything else.
- Earlier reviews:
- Additional Info Resources:
- Official United States Licensing Information:
- Scheduled to be released on DVD by Media Blasters in 2011.
- The Blog-Roll of Reviews:
- “It was not a great series, it was not even a good series, it was an EPIC series that every mecha fan should watch to get their fill of Grade A action. If you don’t like this series I don’t feel sorry for you because you could not enjoy Mazinkaiser’s Hell for what it was, F-U-N.” – That Anime Blog
- “I think Mazinkaiser SKL should be the new milestone – a stretch goal, but not a standard – for super robot fights. This is what not being lazy looks like, what no shortcuts looks like, and what a commitment to spectacular action looks like.” – Ghost Lightning
- “It’s the epitome of an anime intended to appeal to a subgroup of devoted fans and no one else, the sort of people simply looking for a good fight or the sort that can recite everything Go Nagai created. That group might be generally pleased, but discerning viewers and the flagging super robot genre both deserve better.” – Toonzone
- “Mazinkaiser SKL is everything I love about anime. Back when I was growing up and anime was violent as a shark and a killer whale going at it. Simple. These days, it’s all fantasy battling with some love story and hyper exaggerated characters. Mazinkaiser SKL is a return to form of the days of Guyver, Fist of the North Star, Crying Freeman with Mechs.” – Panzer Crush
- “Would I recommend this to any mecha fan? YES! Absolutely! If you like insane fights and blood, you should really check this out, thankfully it’s pretty short so you can breeze through it fast.” – Metanorn