Last month Bandai gave anime fans a one-time opportunity to see Eureka Seven: Good Night, Sleep Tight, Young Lovers in select theatres around the county. Unfortunately, I could not make it. Worse still, I admittedly had not even sat down with this much loved, mecha anime series. So, I thought it was time.
Okay, in case someone out there doesn’t know the story of Renton Thurston, here it is. Flash forward 10,000 years. A sentient being has merged itself with the Earth, forcing humanity into space. On a terraformed planet teenage Renton dreams of lifting (surfing invisible waves in the air caused by a substance called trapar) and achieving a bigger, better life, like the kind his lifting hero Holland and the surfing, subcultural crew Gekkostate live everyday. All that changes when the Nirvash, an advanced bio-mecha unit, and its pilot Eureka crash into his life. Not only does Renton fall in love with this blue-haired member of Gekkostate, but he also has a connection to the Nirvash that compels Holland to make him part of the crew. Are Renton’s dreams coming true? A little bit. The surfing, subcultural Gekkostate is not what it seems. Renton embarks on a journey that elicits universal consequences. Humanity may never be the same.
Epic win! Eureka Seven get its right.
When you grow up on Macross, mecha anime always remains special. So it’s good when you find one that is so well done. Not surprisingly, Dai Sato penned this series. With credits such as Ghost in the Shell, Cowboy Beebop, and Samurai Champloo one can expect an elegant blend of story and action. Eureka Seven delivers just that. On the surface this anime devotes itself to Renton’s coming-of-age, his exposure to the world, and his burgeoning relationship with Eureka. Yet the Gekkostate’s former military background, Renton’s mysteriously alluded to father, and this sentient life from plaguing humanity suggest that we can expect more than the usual comedy, melodrama, and mecha play. Better still, like all exceptional anime, Sato’s story has an end in sight. That’s right, you just get the episodes you crave: no filler crap!
And for someone who spent years attached to his surfboard, the blending of surf/skate culture with classic mecha action is rather refreshing and original. However, did we really need to name two characters Moondogie and Gidget? I’m just asking.
The first collection is heavily character-driven. Between fighting mecha and Renton’s – sometimes annoying – pinning for Eureka, you’re introduced to the crew of the Gekkostate and their stories. But a larger stage is always being built, and the build is good.
Eureka Seven is different, and I like it. It reminds me of the tightly written, dramatic anime like Akira and Megazone, anime that hooked me so long ago.