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Anime / Go Shogun

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Go Shogun (Sengoku Majin Goshōgun) was a super robot anime series produced in 1981 by Ashi Production and aired in 1982 in Japan. It is variously referred to in English as "Demon God of the War-Torn Land GoShogun", "Warring Demon God GoShogun", "Civil War Devil-God GoShogun".

It was released in America in the mid-1980s note  by Saban Entertainment (yes, them) as "Macron 1", where it was spliced together with footage from the show Aku Daisakusen Srungle, claiming it was two groups of heroes fighting two branches of the same villain group.

A meteor strikes the Earth and is found to emanate a powerful new energy called Beamler, which is used to power a battle robot, GoShogun, and a teleporting fortress, Good Thunder. The Docouga Crime Syndicate, lead by crime lord Neo Neros, try to steal the secret of the energy from the inventor of GoShogun, but he kills himself rather than let them acquire it. His son Kenta is targeted by Neo Neros next, but he is taken in by the crew aboard Good Thunder, who travel the world fighting Neo Neros's forces with the Super Robot GoShogun.

Go Shogun has a sequel: a movie Go Shogun: The Time Étranger (戦国魔神ゴーショーグン 時の異邦人, Sengoku Majin Goshōgun: Toki no Étranger), released in 1985. The movie takes place 40 years after the series. Remy Shimada, a former member of the Go Shogun team, now an old woman, lies in a coma after a car accident as her former team mates and Docouga generals watch it helplessly. But in the depths of her subconscious Remy goes back to the time of her childhood and youth and fights death along with her five comrades. The movie is strikingly different from the series in its dark and surrealistic tone, resembling the works of Satoshi Kon.

There are also eight Go Shogun novels, written by Takeshi Shudo and published in 1982-1991. Go Shogun: The Time Étranger is a film adaptation of the eponymous fifth novel. Yoshitaka Amano made most of the covers and illustrations, as well as a number of pictures in the artbooks.

As of 2017, the series and the movie have both been licensed by Discotek, who has officially translated the title as "Warring States Destroyer Goshogun".

Tropes in the series

  • Combining Mecha: GoShogun itself is a single unit, but the three jets the pilots use to dock with it (Shingo's King Arrow, Killy's Jack Knight, and Remy's Queen Rose) can combine into a separate robot called Try-3. Being smaller and weaker than GoShogun, the heroes mostly use it for missions that are expected to be less intense.
  • Cool Sword: GoSaber
  • The Dandy: Leonardo Medici Bundle
  • Driven to Suicide: Go Flasher Special ultimately invokes this. It doesn't deal any damage, but rather grants sentience to the enemy machine, which decides that they would rather be destroyed than continue to be used by Docooga.
  • Dub-Induced Plotline Change: The US version involves test pilot David Chance travelling into a parallel universe under the tyrannical control of an organization called GRIP, led by Dark Star. Chance's entrance into the other universe allows GRIP to send their forces to Earth, leaving Dark Star's cyborg henchman Orn to remain in control in the alternate universe. GRIP is opposed by the two teams of Macron-1, the first led by Dr. Shegall and his team on Earth (from the GoShogun footage), while in the alternate universe Chance organizes a band of rebel warriors, Beta Command, to combat and overthrow Orn (from the Srungle footage). The Beta Command members were given much less screen time than the Earth team.
  • Education Mama: OVAnote  the robot acts just like this, always reminding Kenta that he has to study. This may or may not be intentional.
  • Enemy Mine: The Good Thunder team teams up with Docooga's Quirky Miniboss Squad in one episode to take out a third faction who plans to destroy Good Thunder. Said faction is unaware that the Beamler energy inside of Good Thunder is capable of causing a solar system-level Apocalypse How if not treated carefully, making it a case of Evil Versus Oblivion as well.
  • Evil Doppelgänger: GoNagurl
  • Eyepatch of Power: Suegni Cutnall
  • Finishing Move: Go Flasher Special
  • Frankenslation: In 1986, staff in the USA combined footage from GoShogun and Akū Daisakusen Srungle, a similar show produced by Kokusai Eiga-sha, to form "Macron-1", which portrays the Srungle characters as being part of another branch of the organization fighting evil in a parallel universe. This combined series was produced and released in the United States by Saban.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Neo Neros's three officers
  • Hot Wings
  • Implied Love Interest: Bundle and Remy. More obvious on Bundle's side, but in The Time Étranger Remy is quite flirty around him, too. Yoshitaka Amano's illustrations and artbooks imply this even stronger - this, for example.
  • Leader Forms the Head: Being the leader of the team, Shingo docks into the torso of GoShogun and is thus treated as its main pilot. He also forms the torso of Try-3, but in a twist it's actually Remy who has primary control of that formation, despite only being its legs.
  • Meaningful Name: Leonardo Medici Bundle's first and second names are based on Leonardo da Vinci and Lorenzo de Medici.
  • Never Bring a Knife to a Gun Fight: In the first episode. The Mooks who appear have lightsabers hidden in their umbrellas, but Savalas' umbrella is also a weapon: a machine gun. Guess who wins.
  • Parody: Go Shogun is one of the first robot anime to parody other robot series and poke fun at the genre concepts. Two of the more obvious examples are Kernagul, whose greatest ambition is to own a chain of fast food restaurants, and an enemy robot in episode 22 named Doshard was modeled after the RX-78-2 Gundam, which, when granted sentience by GoShogun, declares that it doesn't want to fight any more and destroys itself.
  • Pirate: Suegni Cutnall
  • Power Glows

Tropes in the movie

  • Back-to-Back Badasses: Shingo and Killy, Cuttnal and Kernagul.
  • Badass Crew
  • Bar Brawl
  • Bittersweet Ending: It is not entirely clear whether Remy lived or not. Although most fans who have seen this movie elect to regard it as closure for Go Shogun (since there's no plausible room for anything else) and heavily lean towards the assumption that she does not.
  • Captain Ersatz: The character of Remy is intended to be a grown up version of Minky Momo, they both have the same voice actor Mami Koyama, they do have the same mindset, speech-patterns and emotions.
  • Car Chase
  • Chekhov's Gun: Played with. Remy wears a golden pendant on her neck. While preparing for the Final Battle, she takes it off and hangs her last revolver bullet on the chain instead.
  • Combat Medic: Suegni Cuttnal is a version of this.
  • Cool Airship: Bundle has a supersonic jet in his Japanese-style country house
  • Cool Bike: The one Bundle borrows from the cops.
  • Cool Car/Flying Car: Remy's, which can be seen during the opening minutes.
  • Creepy Child: The Messenger of Fate.
  • Crucified Hero Shot: In her Last Stand, exhausted Remy leans against a stone cross for support.
  • Cultured Badass: Leonardo Medici Bundle.
  • Demoted to Extra: Though while the time frame and the series' ending makes this an understandable example. The titular mecha is just shown as a hanging toy in Remy's car.
  • Determinator - Plucky Girl: Remy
    Bundle: Remy defies the odds. Her will to live itself has always been a thing of beauty.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The Beast of Fate, especially when it grows.
  • Eldritch Location: The town where our six friends are stuck.
  • The Faceless: Remy as an old woman. We never see her aged face in full frame (especially in regards with her eyes). The bits that are shown reveal a face that's almost identical to that in the series, but aged slightly. Even in the ending, Remy is never shown as an old woman.
  • Flashback Nightmare: Subverted, as it is not clear whether Remy's childhood flashbacks are actual memories or fantasies.
  • Genre Shift: The series parodies kids' robot shows. This is a serious psychological thriller.
  • Heroic Spirit: Certainly Remy.
  • Katanas Are Just Better: While Bundle's no slouch with a submachine gun, his weapon of choice is a katana.
  • Kicking Ass in All Her Finery: Remy engages in a Bar Brawl while wearing a long evening dress.
  • Last Stand: Remy.
  • Like Brother and Sister: Remy and her team mates.
  • Little Miss Badass: It was not a good idea to mess up with Remy, even when she was a kid.
  • One Bullet Left
  • Parental Neglect: Remy's mom hardly notices her.
  • The Philosopher: Bundle
  • The Piano Player: Played with. Bundle plays piano when a Bar Brawl starts, and unfazedly continues to do so until Remy throws an unfortunate mook right on the keyboard, causing a loud tone cluster.
    Remy: Pardon me! Hope I didn't disturb you.
    Bundle: Not at all. A forte was appropriate at that point. (Punches another mook.)
  • The Pollyanna: Remy is optimistic and always maintains her humour even in the face of obvious trouble.
  • Retired Badass: In the beginning of the movie, Remy is over 70 years old and long in retirement. It doesn't stop her from racing her way through the traffic-jammed city, disabling several bank robbers' cars in the process. Made even more awesome once you think this woman is dying of leukemia.
  • Revolvers Are Just Better: Remy's preferred weapon is a Smith & Wesson .44 Magnum.
  • Rule of Symbolism: All around.
  • Samurai: Bundle, a self-made one.
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: Shingo Hojo's weapon of choice, together with grenades.
  • Symbolic Blood: When Remy tries to take a shower, water suddenly turns into blood. Later we learn it was just an illusion.
  • True Companions: Remy and her team.
  • Warrior Poet: Bundle. His choice of words is exquisite, and he's prone to philosophical speeches.
  • You Can't Fight Fate: Inverted. The movie's central idea is that you can.