Pilot Candidate (or Candidate for Goddess) is a manga by Yukiru Sugisaki, later adapted into an anime series mostly known in the United States for a very brief, one-time run on [adult swim] during the block's early years (when it aired on the weekends and had animated comedies on Sundays and action cartoons on Saturdays).The story takes place in the year 4084. It has been over one thousand years since the Crisis of Systems, which resulted in the destruction of four planetary systems, leaving only a single inhabitable planet named Zion. Mankind is forced to live in space colonies, since that one planet is constantly being invaded by alien life forms that have come to be known as Victim. To stop the aliens and to allow people to land on Zion, mankind has developed the astronomical humanoid weapons, Ingrids, or Goddesses. At the G.O.A. (Goddess Operation Academy), young men are trained to pilot the Ingrids. Each of the pilots has a special power called EX; for example the ability to freeze time or to move at extreme speed.
Pilot Candidate contains examples of:
Aerith and Bob: There are very few characters with actual Japanese names; some are European, most are straight up fantasy names. And aside from Zero's real name, the ones with Japanese names have theirs written in Katakana.
And in the same episode, there was a scene which looked like Hiead was going to rape Ihkny in the middle of the hallway. Lucky nothing happened (though this was one of many cut scenes in the Cartoon Network version).
Longest Prologue Ever: The entire series feels like it's setting up for something greater, but it ends before the candidates make it to pilots and doesn't even properly introduce many characters, which is why a lot of people hated the anime (even when it wasn't edited to Toonami standards and shown on [adult swim]).
Marshmallow Hell: Kizna puts Zero through this in episode 05 while she's trying to find signs of EX on his hair.
Meaningful Name: Zero's real name, Rei, is written with the kanji representing number 0.
It's probably more appropriate to say that the manga has been "eternally hiatused", rather than having ended. There is still a very slim chance that Sugisaki will take it back up again, as the manga was rather better than the anime.
You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Oh so very much. Let's see... There's Roose, Yamagi, Kizna, Tsukasa, Wrecka (who deserves a mention for literal blue hair), Teela, Gareas, the nurses, and the list goes on... Apparently in the future hairdye will be really popular.