A strange growth on a mysterious old woman leads the brilliant surgeon Ukyo Retsu into a 5,000-year-old battle for the fate of Japan, as he travels through time to fulfill his destiny by ... See full summary »
Iczer One was one of the very first anime I became aware of. In my early teen years I even bought a copy of it on laserdisk, even though there was no English track--just the original Japanese.
Watching it much later in English I came to love the mood and story of this underrated film. Ultimately Fight! Iczer One is about a self-fulfilling prophecy coming true. An all-female alien race known as the Cthuwulf search the stars in a sleeper ship made from the wreckage of their home world. Their matriarch, Violet sits at the command couch looking out at space. In that moment she thinks "...my children shall die out here in space, and never find a true home". Unbeknowst to her, her ship has passed into the influence of a massive machine built to grant the wishes of its users. Suddenly a strange creature appears, Big Gold, a golden child in a crystal orb with glowing red eyes. It tells Violet that her wish is granted, and she hopes this means her people will be given a new home.
The entity joins itself to the Cthuwulf ship, bonding its essence with everything in it. Violet becomes Sir Violet, now draped in ominous black robes, with the glowing red eyes and masculine voice of Big Gold, while the child manifestation of the machine gains a feminine aspect, growing long golden hair and a more girlish appearance. Likewise the vediim, creatures that have long lived alongside the Cthuwulf, have become horrible parasitic creatures, made wretched by the influence of Big Gold. Now bioweapons, the vidiim implant hosts with eggs laid by large green tipped ovipositor tentacles, from which the alien takes over the host body until the time is right and it rips its way horribly through the host's flesh.
Big Gold indeed takes the Cthuwulf to a new home world, Earth. The vidiim descend to decimate the populace, but in fulfillment of Violet's wish, her children are destined to die before they can inherit it. In the style of a Shakespearian tragedy the Cthuwulf reduce Earth to ashes, but then are stopped by another manifestation of the Machine, a Yin to the Yang of Big Gold--a golden haired warrior woman named Iczer-1. Unstoppable, she singlehandedly carries out the wish as Big Gold's opposite. As Big Gold joined with Violet as a synchronization partner, she seeks out a human girl named Nagisa Kanao--but the girl does not want to fight, and will not synchronize with Iczer-1.
Amidst giant mecha battles and huge scale lightsaber melees on the streets of post-apocalyptic Tokyo, the fate set in motion by Violet's wish counts down like a timer until Iczer-1 is brought into the presence of Big Gold and the truth of their co-joined purpose is finally revealed. A wonderful story.
The downsides? Well the music, for one is awful poppy electronic stuff. The "Iczer-2 theme" has a nice jazzy riff to it, but other than that it's just bad. Likewise the battle pacing is a bit cheesy. The monsters seem paralyzed in "menace the heroine" mode forever without actually -doing- anything, as if waiting for Iczer-1 to show up and kill them. Likewise the power scale is so ludicrous and Iczer-1 seems so unkillable for most of the show, that the Dragonball-esquire fighting makes it hard to really feel any tension. The English dubbing is likewise terrible, killing a lot of the emotion that drips from the voices in the Japanese and making some of the best scenes play a bit cheesy.
On the other hand, the mood of the story is unrelenting and awesomely bleak. The story is wonderful, though it takes watching the show several times before everything makes sense. The characters are deep and their losses are heart-wrenching. On the whole a really great story.
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