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Superior Defender Gundam Force

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Superior Defender Gundam Force (SD Gundam Force, SDガンダムフォース (Japanese), SD鋼彈FORCE (Chinese)) is a 52 episode series that was first broadcast in 2003 in North America on Cartoon Network and 2004 in Japan.

Overview

A Japanese/American co-production, SD Gundam Force initially broadcasted on Cartoon Network in US for 26 episodes, and later on TV Tokyo for 52 episodes, making it the longest Gundam series to date. Though the final 26 episodes were left unaired on television in America, fans petitioned for the second half to be released, and in 2008 the last 26 episodes were released in an English-dubbed DVD set. Unlike previous SD Gundam series, SD stands for Superior Defender. It is a crossover series based on the three SD settings that were used in earlier SD Gundam anime and manga:SD Command Chronicles, a science-fiction-styled militaristic setting; Musha Gundam, a setting with samurai-themed robots; Knight Gundam, a medieval European fantasy-themed setting. It also contains many references and homages to the standard Gundam shows, especially those of the Universal Century, Future Century, and After Colony timelines. In a sharp contrast to the dark nature of most of the other Gundam series, SD Gundam is extremely lighthearted, though it does at times get more serious as the series goes on, but it's never as dark as the more "traditional" Gundam series.

Synopsis

The year is U.C. 0003. The metropolis of Neotopia, a city where humans and robotic lifeforms coexist peacefully, comes under attack by forces calling themselves the Dark Axis. In order to protect Neotopia, the Super Dimensional Force employs Captain Gundam to repel the forces of the Dark Axis. He is joined by a young human named Shute, who's contact with Captain allows him to activate his Soul Drive.

Captain and Shute are soon joined by Zero, the Winged Knight, a Gundam from the Kingdom of Lacrao located in another dimension. Zero was able to escape a massive invasion from the Dark Axis that devastated his homeland with the help of Princess Rele, in the hopes of returning and defeating the Dark Axis.

Bakunetsumaru, the Burning Samurai from Ark, arrives in Neotopia due to a teleportation mistake and ends up joining the others to combat the forces of the Dark Axis. His addition to the group forms the Gundam Force.

The Gundam Force, along with the Super Dimensional Guard, work together to defend Neotopia as well as restore the Kingdom of Lacroa and Ark from Dark Axis control.

Spin-offs/Sequels

Characters

Character Japanese Actor English Actor (Series)
Captain Gundam Hiroshi Kamiya Doug Erholz
Shute Romi Paku Deborah Sale Butler
Chief Haro Takahiro Yoshimizu Scott Jasper
Bell Wood Isao Yamagishi Aliki Theofilopoulos
Destroyer Dom Hiroshi Matsumoto Scott Jasper
Grappler Gouf Mantarô Iwao Doug Erholz
Zapper Zaku Eiji Yanagisawa Danny Katiana
Zero Mitsuki Saiga Aliki Theopilopoulos
Bakunetsumaru Susumu Chiba Yuri Lowenthal
Sayla Akiko Nakagawa Michelle Ruff
Princess Rele Miyu Matsuki Kate Savage
Commander Sazabi Shuuichi Ikeda Dominic Joseph
Juli Kaoru Morota Kate Savage
Kao Lyn Toshihiko Nakajima Danny Katiana
Gunbike Eiji Yanagisawa Paul St. Peter
RAIMI Yuuko Satou
GunDiver Kazuya Nakai
GunEagle Daisuke Namikawa Dave Wittenberg

Opening & Ending Theme

English

Opening Theme

  • "The Name is Captain" by Yoshihiro Ike

Ending Theme

  • "Re-Equip Ring" by Yoshihiro Ike

Japanese

Opening Theme:

  • 1: "Sunrise" by Puffy (eps 1-13)
  • 2: "Love & Peace" by little by little (eps 14-26)
  • 3: "Taiyou Ni Kogarete (Yearn For The Sun)" by Harebare (eps 27-52)

Ending Theme:

  • 1: "Shinjiru Chikara" by Whiteberry (eps 1-13)
  • 2: "Kokoro Odoru (Dancing Heart)" by nobodyknows+ (eps 14-26)
  • 3: "Kimi To Boku (You And I)" by I WiSH (eps 27-38)
  • 4: "Koishikute... (I Miss You...)" by Les.R (eps 39-52)

CD

SD Gundam Force Original Soundtrack+

  • 48 tracks; 41 of background music, 3 opening songs, 4 ending songs.

Video Games

SD Gundam Force (GBA)

The GBA game retold the story of the first 26 episodes of the show and allowed players to play as either Captain Gundam, Bakunetsumaru or Zero the Winged Knight. Characters could be switched at any time (for the cost of one bar from the special attack meter) and players would need to use each character's strengths to successfully complete the game.

SD Gundam Force Showdown! (PS2)

The PS2 title was a much grander affair, presenting a brand new story. The mysterious Dimensional Halo appears in Neotopia and creates mirror versions of Neotopia, Lacroa and Ark. The Gundam Force are forced to battle their way through these copy dimensions and even face their own evil doppelgangers to reach De Scar Road and defeat the Dimensional Halo. Each Gundam Force member had a variety of new forms they could achieve including one super secret form for each which could only be unlocked by a code (the code was presented on a Japanese trading card and eventually filtered to the Western fandom). The game even eventually allowed the player to play as a Zako soldier.

The Dimensional Halo and it's minions were based on the weapons of the Zanscare Empire in Victory Gundam. The game also featured further references to the earlier Universal Century, [[Future Century] and After Colony timelines in the form of new villains to populate the mirror dimensions.

Ride

During the show's run in Japan, a limited time attraction was opened. Titled SD Gundam Force: Destructive Daishogun Appears!!Zako?, the twenty minute show used a special theater to present a whole new SD Gundam Force adventure which the audience could interact with. Seemingly set in between episodes 26 and 27 (although overall it is best treated as being non-canon), the stars of the show are the Zakos who have been forced to become the SDG's cleaning crew. The Lacroan villain Da Jarle, Knight of the Hammer and the Ark Destructive Daishogun Hakaimaru seek to unify the world with the mysterious Zakarello Mobile. Da Jarle is able to change the appearance of others and Hakaimaru has a bath fetish that leads to him creating a 'Super Bathhouse' command station. The audience and the Zakos join the Gundam Force as they attempt to stop this new alliance.

The video portion of this attraction is included as an extra on the complete Japanese SD Gundam Force DVD boxset.

Trivia

  • This is the first Gundam series to use full Cell Shading for all its animations.
  • This is the first Gundam series to debut in North America first before debuting in Japan.

External links


Superior Defender Gundam Force
Anime Superior Defender Gundam Force | Comprehensive Episode Listing
Events
Topics Nations and Factions | Locations | Characters | Battleship and Spacecraft | Technology
Books Superior Defender Gundam Force | Gaiden | Emaki Musharetsuden
Timelines Advanced Generation | After Colony | After War | Anno Domini | Build Fighters | Correct Century | Cosmic Era | Future Century | Mars Century | Post Disaster | Regild Century | SD Gundam | Universal Century

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