I was talking to Shance about the Getter Robo OVAs a few days back, and the conversation quickly turned to the topic of how it’s easy to confuse the three OVAs together, thanks to the confusing nature of kanji. So I thought up of writing this post for those who want to experience the Getter Robo franchise.
Wait, wait. Aren’t there things I should know about the Getter franchise first?
Well, just a wee bit, really. You can read the helpful Wikipedia entry for it, in which you could decide if Getter is for you. The shows operate on a very loose continuity–the characters are largely the same, but the stories aren’t interconnected at all.
So, about that name confusion…
All three Getter Robo OVAs have the word “Shin” in them, and this word is sometimes spelled with a different kanji. Shin could mean “change”, “true”, “god”, or “new”.
Here are the Japanese titles and their English counterparts:
- Shin (Change!!) Getter Robo: The Last Day of the World -> Getter Robo Armageddon
- Shin Getter Robo vs Neo Getter Robo (English name is the same)
- Shin Getter Robo -> New Getter Robo
For the sake of brevity, I’ll call these shows as “Armageddon”, “Shin vs Neo”, and “New”, respectively.
That’s about it now. I’ll go with the order in which I watched these shows. You’ll understand why.
Shin Getter Robo VS Neo Getter Robo
Shin vs Neo was the first Getter Robo show I watched. It is a fine introduction, all things considered. Being only 4 episodes long, there is less commitment in terms of time and effort. Plus it has Texas Mack.
The show opens with one of my favorite scenes in the franchise.
Continuity: Takes a lot of elements from the original ’70s show and Getter Robo Go, but unrelated to either in terms of plot.
Obligatory Fat Guy: Musashi, then Gai.
Enemies: The Dinosaur Empire
- Shortest out of the three OVAs
- Easiest to get into
- Badass opening scene
- Texas Mack
- Action is a bit meh
- The final fight was boring
- Too short!
New Getter Robo
New is the most manga-faithful Getter show, and is chock-full of batshit insane ultraviolence. It is also the newest out of the three (2004), but still retains that retro look.
Continuity: A reimagining of the original manga from the very start.
Obligatory Fat Guy: Benkei + Musashi = Benkei Musashibou
Enemies: Extra-dimensional monsters called the “Oni”
- Very faithful to the manga’s mood
- Everyone is batshit insane, even Michiru
- Lots of blood and gore
- Steampunk Heian era Japan!
- Curb-stomping God, literally
- Mindfuck episode
- Plot makes no sense at all (who cares it’s Getter anyway)
- Benkei’s balls (NSFW)
- Mindfuck episode
Getter Robo Armageddon
Armageddon’s mood is fantastic–the first three episodes were directed by Yasuhiro Imagawa, and they were the most apocalyptic out of all apocalyptic shows I’ve seen. Sadly, he got sacked afterwards, and the show fell into a bad routine with less interesting characters. It still picks up again by the end, where it manages to keep topping itself until it pulls an entirely brick-shitting ending.
Continuity: A darker alternate universe, set in the after years of the Getter Team. An audio drama prequel (Getter Robo: The Moon Wars) was released shortly later. Borrows some elements from the Shin Getter Robo manga.
Obligatory Fat Guy: Musashi, Benkei, Gai
Enemies: An alien race dubbed as the “Invaders”
- Directed by Yasuhiro Imagawa
- Epic apocalyptic mood
- Incredible brick-shitting moments
- Black Getter
- The ending
- Yasuhiro Imagawa only directed the first three episodes, oh noes!
- Muddled plot
- Very confusing in general
- Strays a bit too much from the regular Getter mythos
Other stuff you might need to know
This order might be your best bet, because Armageddon is a tough nut to crack, albeit a very rewarding one. New is the most solid out of the three.
Shin Getter Robo (the mech) only appears in Shin vs Neo and Armageddon. The robot in New is a revised version of the original Getter Robo, incorporating some of Shin’s stylistics. In the Alpha timeline of Super Robot Wars, Shin Getter is strong enough to destroy the universe if it were to operate at full power (it only uses around 10% in actual combat).
Those of you who enjoyed Gurren Lagann’s Spiral Power element would probably get a kick out of Getter Rays, which served as inspiration for all those green swirly drills. And if it’s drills that you want, most Getter-2 variations have them.
Oh, and please comment if you think this post is helpful or not~