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Friday, March 22, 2013

Sentai Month: Tokumei Sentai Go-Busters Review

Oh Go-busters how I had to stop reviewing you because of my personal life. All I can say if I kept continuing episode reviews for this series it would have been the same complaint over and over again when the show went into the aftermath arc. So what are my thoughts on the this "spy" motif series, well we are going to find out.
Go-busters follows the story of three heroes who gained their powers thirteen years ago since a virus broke out. This virus was completely out of control and soon a whole group of scientists had to give three kids a vaccine program and leave them so that they can seal this virus away. During those thirteen years these three have been training for the day that it comes back. This foe does return, but he has more than one would think. During his time in the subspace he made an avatar to do his bidding and with the virus' power he can make new robots to attack the city. The virus Messiah though only cares for Enertron so that he can escape from the Subspace and bring havoc to the humans. His avatar, Enter has other plans though as he basically only uses Messiah to get what he wants. Our three heroes have been training for very long and are ready to finally take down the virus that changed their lives and took their families. Sadly there are some bugs with the team as they have weak points from the vaccine program. The leader Hiromu has a fear of chickens and whenever he sees one he freezes up yet his true powers is to go super fast. Ryuji the blue member can overheat and completely go crazy in the battlefield with his super strength. With Yoko the yellow and only female member she needs calories to keep working and if she runs out she cannot move, but when she is pumped she can jump higher than any man possible. Each hero though comes with a Buddyroid to assist them in their lives as they have been together for the whole thirteen years. Nick, a motorcycle robot that has no sense of direction is with Hiromu as he is a good teacher for Hiromu at times. Gorisaki, the overly worried Gorrila robot is with Ryuji as the two never had any struggle with each other. Usada, a over tempered bunny robot is paired with Yoko as the two act like siblings and have constant fights, but they still care for each other. Hiromu is the leader character who at first wanted to do things by himself, but throughout his experience he learns that teamwork is important, more than once. Ryuji is a calm and mature man who takes care of the team like an older brother as he and Yoko have a close bond. Yoko is a very cheerful person even with her constant anger at times. Soon new character arrive like Escape another avatar made by Messiah who follows his orders completely unlike Enter. Jin was a man who was with the scientists and comes back looking the same he did thirteen years ago! He is a very comedic guy who doesn't act his age at all, but to be honest he is also the most serious member of the team who really is important to the plot. His Buddyroid is Beet J Stag who is actually a Sentai warrior as well. He is far from perfect, but that is what Jin likes as the two have little moments of struggling with each other and a deep bond. J can seem like an idiot, but he honestly has a heart of gold at times and does a lot for his partner.
I must have this here since the series has a complete turn around plot wise. This series was having trouble with the core audience so changes had to be made and so the original plot of the series was done in thirty episodes. The rest of the series is an aftermath like arc. So there will be SPOLIERS here so skip this whole paragraph if you want to. So Messiah was defeated and it seemed everything was over, but Enter and Escape are still alive. Enter uses these cards that have Messiah's powers in them as he wants to revive Messiah by getting data on human emotions since Hiromu a human defeated him in combat. Enter is doing the same he did, but is much more power hungry as he shows that he is aiming for power. Escape is different as she wants to protect Messiah and she knows Enter will only use him while she wants Messiah to rule. So our heroes fight new Metaroids that are made by these cards as they get data from certain human emotions. So the fight continues as our heroes made big sacrifices to just stop Messiah so they want to make sure that Enter and the rest of the Vaglass are fully destroyed.
Cocky villain is changed into a power hungry villain..... *sigh*
Pros- The first thirteen episodes are probably the best you will get from the series. I reviewed those and not every episode from their is a true masterpiece, but they keep honest with the theme they were playing with. These episodes had a huge motif of spies and teamwork as the team thought of many plans to try to counter Enter's. The characters in the first half of the show are completely fine as they are. Hiromu did act more like a solo hero, but he was starting to open up with the others. Ryuji and Yoko were already very close so they have some of the best moments in the series. I love their sibling like bond it was a lot of fun and the show really put a lot of emphasis on this. Jin was another really fun character as I said he can be very funny and yet very serious and essential, but that changes. J is a pure comedic character and even when I didn't enjoy an episode fully he got my smiling or laughing. Then as I said before J does have some shining moments other then comedic ones. Enter could have been one of my favorite villains since in the first part of the show he was a whole lot of fun. He was smart and always had the team in a corner, his plans were near flawless. Now he does keep his genius ideas, it's just how they executed him later was disappointing. The action portion of the show stayed the same luckily as this part of the series didn't have many flaws. The suit action was very well done with great stunts and nice looking effects. I was really surprised on what was done in terms of action as we got some unique moments thanks to the heroes superpowers. I will still say this, the mecha action for this show was some of the best in the franchise. They went back to some basics and improved on them with a great mix of effects. Each of the mechs had importance and could fight on their own with no problems and then when they combine they make powerful robots. The last thing I loved from this series was the designs, I love how the suit for the Buster's looked. The mechs even looked amazing with the Ace being one of my favorite robots of the franchise. Sadly even with pretty effects and great designs there are many story elements that keep the show down.
I so can't wait for this!
Cons- Messiah, I was so hoping for him to be much better. He was completely out of control and had so much power that Enter had to use his trickery to use him. I was expecting for Messiah to be gaining intelligence since he did make Escape on his own when Enter was failing and he made Escape more loyal to him. I was expecting for Messiah to soon be able to overcome Enter and find be the big villain he should have been. The series had to rush the first part though so Messiah was only seen as a big toddler. Escape was a villain that barely had anything, she was plain and boring. She really only a good moment when she was protecting Messiah from Enter. They even tried forcing a rivalry with her and Ryuji as it really got nowhere. The series completely drops a lot of things including the spy theme it had for a while. You will completely forget about Enertron as it will have barely any importance. I mean the whole series in a nut shell can be jokes about "Remember when Go-Busters had....." Going on with that it's mostly because of the re-writing and the aftermath arc. So many things got ruined in this arc of the series. First they completely change Enter to a power hungry villain as he just got too crazy and not in the good way like Kamen Rider Ouja. Enter used what he had, but now they made him a villain who gets what he wants to use. There are also so many things forced into the series like a new mech which the effects for are terrible. There are even power-up forms and they do work with the teamwork motif, but they just make Jin and J useless. Going on with that Jin's and J's importance with the plot only comes near the end of the aftermath arc. There was like one other episode before that where J was trying to do something for Jin and another where we learn more about Jin. So they basically get two episodes for the rest of the series. The whole focus changes as you can tell as Hiromu steals the spotlight as the series feel way too single hero like. Then with all the new things added some effects for the fights are terrible as they added way too many new things and wasted their budget. The series also goes through the Goseiger issue with having too many climaxes making the real climax weak in comparison since we had an ending for the first arc in episode thirty. Finally the biggest thing that gets me about this series is how they repeat so many of the same messages. Even the beginning did this with Hiromu accepting teamwork and it is brought up again in the aftermath since Hiromu tries to do things on his own. That is not the only message they repeat as the sacrifice that was made in the first arc comes up way too much and our heroes should know this already. It is done again in the end of the series and yes it's sad no matter what, but the heroes already know about sacrifices.

Honestly, the most disappointing villains for me in a Sentai

One more thing is that the series has a whole group supporting them. Why am I just mentioning them now since they are the most ignored of the whole series! The series does give these three characters their moments, but in reality they do their job and that is it.
Overall- This series is really split among the fanbase. It's a real love or hate it relationship and when looking back at this series I am in the middle sort of. As I said if the series actually did end at episode thirty I would probably give it a B-. It was a fun series to watch as Enter was great during this and a lot of things were still flawed, still not terrible though, but the aftermath arc just completely ruins the series. To be honest I was thinking this wouldn't be my least favorite Sentai, but when doing this review it probably is. I mean it completely abandons on what the series was originally trying to do. It completely ignored many of it's characters just so that Hiromu could get even more of the spotlight. The series has a downgrading effect cause at a certain point the series just keeps doing down which is surprisingly near around when I stopped doing the episode reviews. There are still good moments, but when you reflect it for the overall feeling it makes me sad. I saw good potential for this series since it was going back to the old ways when adding many new things. There were even twists to avoid cliffhangers, but then the series does them anyways later on. I will say this mission was not a complete failure as I give Tokumei Sentai Go-Busters a D.
It does hurt me to bash on this series though since I had no problems with the cast. It's just so many things went wrong and I cannot ignore it. I thought I was going to give this series a C- at best, but I just couldn't. There are way too many flaws and it just makes me sad. I really hope I can see some of these actors return for another toku or some other show since they deserve better. If you want to watch the series I highly recommend just watching the first thirty cause the other episodes just gives a bad taste in your mouth.

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