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Western Animation / Galactik Football

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"On every planet in the galaxy you'll find the Flux, a powerful, magical energy. Here on Akillian we call it the Breath. The Flux is so strong that it had to be banned, except in Galactik Football, the most spectacular sport in the universe. But fifteen years ago a mysterious explosion rocked Akillian, swept the Breath away and destroyed our chances in the Galactik Football Cup. Fifteen years without a decent team and nothing but snow and ice. Now, hope lives again. Young, new players to revive the Breath of Akillian. Our fate is in their hands.
— Aarch, opening credits

Galactik Football, is a French-produced animated series that mixes conventional 2D animation with 3D motion-capture. Think The Mighty Ducks in space, but not Mighty Ducks: The Animated Series in space. It aired for three seasons from 2006 to 2011.

The story centres around a group of misfit teenagers recruited by veteran footballer Aarch, to play in the Galactik Football Cup. His new team, The Snow Kids, must face off against a host of magically endowed alien teams and more teen angst than you can shake a stick at if they are to have any hope of advancing in the competition.

Notable because while the team is often surrounded by intergalactic conspiracy, corporate evil and the occasional off-screen genocide, the Snow Kids are usually mostly unaware of the grand space opera brewing around them and are more concerned with team squabbles and perfecting their dribbling then they are with the evil conspiracy out to get them.

It is officially available on YouTube.

This show contains examples of:

  • The Ace: Warren and the Lightnings were this at the beginning of the series. Then season 2 gives us Luur, who is so good that he can go up against all the Snow Kids on his own and score a goal without breaking a sweat. The Snow Kids themselves are rapidly becoming this, seeing as they've won the Galactik Football Cup an unprecedented three times in a row.
  • Aesop Amnesia: D'Jok's ego problems always get sorted by the end of the season and always return by the start of the next. Lampshaded by Warren in season 3.
  • All There in the Manual: The cause of the Great War is only explained in an obscure novelization of the first 6 episodes. Unfortunately, we do not tell what is the cause is.
  • Animation Bump: The animation becomes much more fluid during the actual football sequences, despite the shift to 3D.
  • Anime Hair: D'Jok's red-pinkish spiky hair.
  • Artistic Licence – Sports: Besides the most obvious difference of players controlling a modality of flux, galactik football differs from the Real Life thing regarding some basic rules:
    • Games are played 7-a-side.
    • The balls are made of Hard Light and disintegrate whenever they leave the playing area (after goals and out-of-bounds situations).
    • No corner shots and OOB kicks. Instead, a jump ball is used after every goal, penalty and foul play.
    • Players are excluded for a limited amount of time instead of receiving full game red cards.
  • Babies Make Everything Better: By the end of season 3, Addim is carrying Aarch's child, which firmly cements their relationship.
  • Background Magic Field: The Flux is an intense force binding the Zaelion Galaxy and its' many races together. It was used in the Great War before a concluding treaty restricted it to just galactik football. Most of the planets represented in the GFC have their own manifestation of the Flux: Akillian has the Breath, Unadar (the Rykers home planet) has the Metal Yell, Wamba has it's own unnamed manifestation, the Shadow Archipelago has the Smog, the home planet of the Lightnings has an unnamed manjfestation, Xenon has the Heat and Hectonia has the newest awakened Flux, the Wave to which Yuki switches in season 3. In general all of them give the user Super-Speed, Super-Strength and incredibly tall leaps. Besides those there is at least one unique ability to each of the flux modalities.
  • Bad "Bad Acting": D'Jok, if his disastrous commercial in season 2 is anything to go by.
  • Beneath the Mask: After Sinedd learns he has a real family and something worth living for, he turns out to have a sensitive and innocent side.
  • Big Bad: Bleylock for seasons 1 and 2. Unusually enough the Snow Kids only know of him because of his wish to extract the Metaflux that was sealed inside the Kids after the great Akilian catastrophe and they don't even hear of him during season 2.
  • Boyish Short Hair: Tia, during the whole series which indicates that she has a more masculine personality.
  • Body Double: This was how The Cyclops team tries to cheat in season 1. Since all members of their species look the same, they simply switched out the tired old players with new players during halftime.
  • Broken Aesop: Veteran player Warren stresses to Rocket that the Snow Kids have to win as a team... shortly before pulling off a performance that's like that Bugs Bunny cartoon where Bugs is in a game of baseball and playing all the positions.
  • The Bus Came Back: For Zoelin (Micro Ice's Satellite Love Interest), Ballow (Akillian crime boss), and Tia's fake parents in season 3.
  • Cats Are Mean: A robotic cat is used as a spy by the bad guys in seasons 2 & 3.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Mice Delight, Micro Ice's drink range that is mentioned early on in season 3, is what finally creates the Anti Multi-Flux.
  • Cyborg: An all-female (except for D'jok during the Paradisia Cup - he's also the Odd One Out in that he's fully organic) team of them in season 3. And they play pretty damn good, too!
  • Determinator: Sinedd in season 2, because who cares about broken ankles and Smog poisoning?
  • Did Not Get the Girl: Season 3. Mei ends up with Sinedd, D'jok's biggest rival. Even worse, Mei dies at the end of the series, in the very last scene.
  • Fun Personified: Micro-Ice takes next to nothing seriously.
  • Fun T-Shirt: Artie is seen wearing a Micro-Ice t-shirt, as well as a Snow Kids cap.
  • Foil: Sinedd is D'Jok's arch-rival and an Anti-Hero, although they are not that different.
  • Helicopter Parents: Mei's mother is extremely ambitious on her behalf, even going so far as to encourage her daughter to use her feminine wiles to create a rift in D'Jok and Micro-Ice's friendship.
  • Hero Antagonist: Warren is often a rival to the Snow Kids in the games, but is a good guy.
  • Hidden Depths: Sinedd and Artegor. Luur is also surprisingly good natured about helping others despite maintaining the image of a badass on the pitch.
  • Hypocritical Humor: D'Jok telling Micro-Ice that his bad attitude is why he hasn't manifested the breath.
  • I Have Your Wife: Bleylock forces D'Jok to play badly by kidnapping his father Sonny Blackbones.
  • In a Single Bound: Flux allows players to jump to ridiculous heights.
  • Informed Ability: Mei's skills as a defender in the first season. She has less defensive presence than Tia. And despite this, we are supposed to think Micro-Ice is the weakest link on the team? Not buying that.
    • A whole team gets this: the Pirates (a.k.a. the cover-up for Sonny's underground activities that's implied to be by-far the most casual galactik football team, not really caring about any sort of win as long as the façade stays up) somehow managed to have an All-Star game player despite their only showing prior to that being a sound trouncing both home and away (1-4 home, 5-0 away) by the Snow Kids.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Sinedd and D'Jok.
  • Jumped at the Call: D'Jok.
  • Kent Brockman News: Callie Mystique and Nork host the sports segment of ArcadiaNews on holo-TV. They're also the commentators for all the games, especially Callie who's also an unabashed Snow Kids fan.
  • Lady of Adventure: Tia, she is portrayed as being adventurous and lived by her own rules. In seasons 2 and 3, she went on a mission with Pirates and proved to be quite ingenious.
  • Law of Alien Names: Subverted. The aliens tend to have names like Warren and Nealy while the human characters are called Micro Ice, Aarch and D'Jok.
  • Lethal Chef: Though he doesn't make it himself, Micro Ice's soft drink range in season 3 is mentioned to be very bad tasting.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Partially averted with the Snow Kids, who tend to wear the same clothes day to day, but also are seen throughout the series in a wide arrange of other outfits. Played straight with almost everyone else, most glaringly with Aarch who wears his coat in the Akillian Blizzard and the tropical Wambas planet, Norata, who wears his gardener's gloves EVERYWHERE, and Warren, who is never seen without his trademark suit.
    • Finally averted in season 3 where the adults who make it to Paradisia get a costume change to account for the warmer weather.
  • The Medic: Dame Simbai, who is the team's doctor / medic and even looks like a herbalist healer. Her speciality is the use of healing plants to cure the injuries of the Snow Kids
  • Manic Pixie Dream Girl: Tia embodies this. She changed Rocket's life by pushing him to do the try out, finding his mother, save him from Netherball and brought him out of his lonely and reclusive life.
  • Mirror Character: D'jok and Sinedd are both Jerk Jocks, both are strikers, both grew up as orphans, both have the hots for Mei and both 'betrayed' their teams at one point or another.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: When Sinedd reached the Despair Event Horizon in season 3, the Shadows told him to forget it and get back to work. Is it that big of a surprise that he joins The Snow Kids shortly after?
  • Model Couple: Season 2 shows D'Jok and Mei are being marketed off as one. Season 3 does the same with Mei and Sinedd.
  • Most Definitely Not a Villain: Bleylock from the past fits this pretty handily "Don't worry, we definetely won't use this potential weapon of mass destruction for military purposes..."
  • Ms. Fanservice: Mei has a few fanservicey moments spread throughout the series. Justified since she also does modelling work besides playing galactik football for the Snow Kids, and everybody knows Sex Sells. (The fact she's a tall beauty also makes her a magnet for advertisers).
  • Mundane Utility: Flux gives super-strength, super-speed, super-agility, teleportation, hypnosis and possibly flight but is used only to play football. A Society Council is in place to rigidly enforce this rule.
    • Invoked, since in the backstory, Flux was used to fight a savage galactic war, so the restrictions are seen as necessary. The restrictions were a part of the ending treaty of peace.
  • My God, What Have I Done??: Rocket says this almost word for word in the season two's episode "The Fallen Star", after realizing his Netherball opponent is actually Tia. (He thought he was playing against various previous opponents.)
    • Mei using the Smog could be considered one from her expression. Her joining the Shadows deflates that idea.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: In season 3, just as Clamp is putting the finishing touches on the Anti Multi-Flux, Sydney and Harvey drop a can of Mice Delight in it. Subverted, Mice Delight turns out to contain the ingredient that Clamp needed.
  • No Antagonist: Played with. The A plot, focusing on the Snow Kids, is at most your traditional sports drama with player grudges... which aren't really all that antagonistic in the end. The B plot however averts this HARD, with the Pirates going after Bleylock, an Ax-Crazy maniac who wants to destroy the flux and it's many variants, and to eventually replace it with the metaflux, a special arificial flux that also has incredibly damaging properties to a normal human body. The two plots do intertwine on occasion: the first instance involves the Pirates extracting the metaflux from the Snow Kids and Bleylock modding the Galactik Football Cup trophy into a Soul Jar of sorts for the flux late into season one so he could control the only remaining flux in the galaxy; season two has the Netherball mini-arc and the flux warheads that were created from the multiflux collected during netherball games and season three has the entire Paradisia portion revolve around yet another scheme to use the multiflux, this time in the form of the Cyborg babe team Paradisia and, eventually, in the form of a Planet Killer multiflux warhead.
  • No OSHA Compliance: The gardens in Genesis stadium, as shown when Tia nearly falls to her death there. The Genesis stadium pitch is a minor example, since if the glass field breaks there is nothing to stop the players from plummeting to their doom, as shown in the season 2 finale.
  • Nonhumans Lack Attributes: Warren is designed to look like down to the suit he wears for public appearances. However his appearance differs from Dr. Manhattan in regards to one large attribute.
  • Not Quite Flight: Players using their Flux can leap incredible distances, change their falling speed and Double Jump. None of which is referred as flight.
  • One True Love: Rocket and Tia's relationship is indestructable ever since they first met, not like that of D'Jok and Mei's.
  • Our Clones Are The Same: Clones are computer simulations used for training or to replace a missing player. But a robot pretending to be Clamp is also called a clone in season 1.
  • Our Humans Are Different: Implied. Whether they have one eye, prehensile feet, or look like frogs, players from other planets are pretty much considered human.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Sonny, the most wanted man in the galaxy keeps high tech robots from seeing him with nothing more than a hood and a pair of goggles, the best thing is, he still wears the same clothes he wears on the wanted ads in tv.
  • Parental Abandonment: Keira abandoned Rocket when he was an infant. Thankfully a bit of intervention from Tia manages to bring her and Norata back together by the end of Season 1.
  • Passionate Sports Girl: Tia escaped from her parents the moment she heard about the possibility of going pro and playing galactik football.
  • Personality Powers: Using a Flux seems to require teamwork and an attachment to its home planet. Naturally, it's easier for players to learn the Flux of their home planet, but some players train themselves to use a different Flux. Aarch, Artegor and others were Akilians using the Smog. In season 3, Aarch suggests that anger can make a player use the Smog. When Yuki trains to learn the Wave, an Elektras player relates that Hectonia had no Flux until the Elektras managed to awaken the Wave with their willpower.
  • Phantasy Spelling: The title of the series, "Galactik Football", is intentionally spelled wrong, as an indication that the series will contain supernatural / scifi elements.
  • Phlebotinum Overdose: Aarch became sick from over-using the Smog in the backstory. Sinedd also began to suffer from it but got better. In season 3, Mei left the Shadows because training to use the Smog was too hard for her. It's not just the Smog, either, since Dame Simbai concludes that Ahito's narcolepsy comes from the high amount of Breath in his body in season 3.
    • Phlebotinum Dependence: Players can also become ill from losing their Flux, as seen with Artegor in season 2.
  • Pink Means Feminine: Mei's rarely seen in anything that isn't pink.
  • The Professor: Clamp, the team's technical advisor (and technician), used to work as a professor on the creation of the Metaflux. He is also the most intelligent member of the cast.
  • Punny Name: D'Jok is the jock. Sinedd performs the Face–Heel Turn. Who knows what Micro-Ice is a pun of.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Harris, The Dragon of season 2 and the final Big Bad of the series wears a pink overcoat.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Aarch is strict but fair with his team. He is understanding when Tia temporarily joins the Pirates to rescue her parents, although he has her take double trainings until the next game.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Apparently everyone knew Mark before he joined the team and at one point he was set to replace Micro-Ice.
    • Crosses over into Ass Pull. Supposedly, he was up for consideration when Micro-Ice had left with the pirates, but if that was the case, Aarch would have had him play instead of using a clone, as the clones at that point could have been beaten by a crippled 5-year old. They should just have had him be a friend of the players that had been away during the last cup.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Vega, one of the baddies from season 3, can transform into a massive red snake.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The Snow Kids, who only started playing professionally at the start of the series and who were selected from a variety of backgrounds through try-outs. They start out as the underdogs, but eventually become the best in their field through dedication (and the Breath). They also turn out to be the only children on their planet with the Breath.
  • Rebellious Rich Kid: Tia, who is the daughter of the Obia Moon ambassador and who plays for the Snow Kids against the will of her parents. She's also the most tomboyish female character out of the (teenage) cast.
  • Serial Romeo: Micro Ice shows signs of this, since he seems to truly believe that whichever girl he's crushing on is the one.
  • Sleepy Head: Ahito, who sleeps in his goal during the matches and only wakes up to stop the ball (or otherwise perform a save). This is a trait he seems to have in common with his dad, who also sleeps through anything, only to wake up when something is asked from him.
  • Soap Opera Disease: Ahito gets struck down with an unidentified disease at the start of season 2, which causes him to pass out during training. He is replaced by his cousin Yuki for most of the season and only returns near the end, still afflicted. In season 3, it's discovered that Ahito has the power to absorb flux and control it, which made him ill in the first place. After extensive training with Dame Simbai, he uses this power in season 3 to spread around essence of the Multiflux after the Breath is lost.
  • Space Pirates: The heroic kind, though Corso is the only one who says 'Arrgh!'. The pirate Mooks also double as the Pirate football club, being one of the few fluxless teams to compete in the Galactik Football Cup. They're thought of as decent, even netting one of the All-Stars for the season 2 all-star game.
  • Spirited Young Lady: Tia embodies a feisty and fierce diplomatic side throughout the series.
  • Stage Mom: Mei's mother becomes this is season 1, as she is the one who drags Mei to the team tryouts then pushes her into a bunch of commercials to capitalize on her new found fame. She gets better once Mei grows a backbone and gives her a piece of her mind.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: A minor example with Aarch and Addim, who can't be together due to their respective positions in the league. This is solved once Aarch steps down from his coaching position to be with her.
  • Stock Footage: The series often used stock footage during the football matches to pad out the matches while saving on animation costs. The most prominent examples are the special moves used by the Snow Kids (Ahito's saves, Rocket's aerial manoeuvres, D'Jok's attempts on the goal), some of the regular manoeuvres (one of the characters bypassing / outplaying an opponent) and even some of the other teams' special moves (the Rykers' "Metal Yell", the Cyclops' charge, the Shadow's teleportation, the Technoid's spinning kick), which were often used several times per game. This was to be expected, seeing that the series used 3D motion-capture for their animation.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Mei is about as tall as some of the boys on the Snow Kids team. Not long after the Snow Kids make their big break into the knockout stage of the Galactik Football Cup, Mei lands her first serious modelling gig, and the audiences eat it up like hotcakes. Sadly her good looks eventually get to her by the time season 3 rolls around: she's become vain and very much attention obsessed, which causes her to break up with D'Jok and set up an apparent scheme to get close to Sinedd, a perennial fan-favorite. Eventually she does end up taking a liking for Sinedd which sets up his Redemption Arc and return to the Snow Kids.
  • Teacher's Pet: An early source of friction amoung the team is the fact that Rocket is Aarch's nephew, which makes some people think that he got a free pass into the team.
  • Team Spirit: It's a necessity to awaken the Flux inside a body. Some teams have an aggressive team spirit that sometimes even goes to the extent of wanting victory at all costs (Rykers, Shadows, Paradisia, somewhat less present in Xenons) while other teams (Lightnings, Snow Kids, Pirates, Hectonia in season 3, Wambas) build theirs around friendship and trust instead.
  • The Future: The series is set in a far future of 25th century in Zaelion Galaxy, which is 20 light-years away than Milky Way.
  • Time Skip: There is supposedly a 4-years time skip between season 1 and 2, yet the characters don't age at all, not to mention change their clothes. Of course, they might be Older Than They Look. There is a one-year time skip between season 2 and 3, and a two-months time skip in season 3.
  • Tomboy and Girly Girl: Tia and Mei fulfill these role as tomboy and girlygirl respectively, as Tia is tough and not afraid to get her hands dirty, while Mei is a part-time fashion model, who is more obsessed with her looks (and boys) than football.
  • Tomboy with a Girly Streak: Tia turns out to be a great cook during her stint with the pirates in season 2. Justified because she was brought up as a prim-and-proper lady by her nanny, Stella, before Tia's parents allowed her to go full-tomboy and play galactik football.
  • Underdogs Never Lose: The Snow Kids start out as the underdog during the championship and are nearly eliminated during the qualifiers. After most of their players get access to the Breath, they make an amazing comeback and win the cup against the Shadows (the favorites for the win). Even after becoming the champions, they still are perceived as the underdogs, but, nevertheless, manage to win regardless.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Sinedd can inadvertently further someone's plot for Galactic domination just by sitting quietly in his room. Rocket and D'Jok aren't immune to this either.
  • Was It All a Lie?: Sinedd's fake parents
  • Weapon of Mass Destruction: It turns out that the explosion on Akilian was caused by the Meta-Flux, which suppressed the Breath for 15 years. In later seasons, the Multi-Flux was used as a weapon a few times.
  • Welcome Back, Traitor: Despite defecting to Team Paradisia and the Shadows respectively, both D'Jok and Sinedd are welcomed back to the Snow Kids with open arms.
  • We Used to Be Friends: Aarch and Artegor used to play on the same team and were the best of friends (if not friendly rivals). Then, Aarch lost control of the Smog due to overexertion and had to retire, while Artegor took over the leadership position from Aarch. To say that the friendship between the two went sour from then on is an understatement.