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YMMV / Medabots

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  • Adaptation Displacement: Most people who know about Medabots at all only know about Nelvana's anime dub. It's rare to find someone who knows that it's actually a franchise that got started in 1997 with a video game series. It's even rarer to find anyone who knows about the manga adaptation or the GBA games that got localizations (everything that made it to the west is a derivative of Medarot 2, Ikki's premiere game — the Medabots game is actually Medarot 2 CORE). The anime is actually a Broad Strokes adaptation of the first two video games and a few of the manga (mostly the Medarot 2 manga and Medarotter Rintarou, whose title character became a Canon Immigrant in the anime), and was released two years after the original game.
  • Alternate Character Interpretation:
    • The Tenryou family in the anime is actually quite different from the games. In the original games, for example, Chidori is rather stern with Ikki, enough to surprise anyone who only knows her through the anime, though in Medarot 4, her personality was retconned to be the same as her anime counterpart.
    • Somebody on the writing staff for Spirits apparently forgot to watch the original anime, as Mr. Tenryou is explicitly shown to have a desk job for some corporation... in blatant contrast to his work in the original show.
  • Ass Pull: The original series finale is a lot to swallow, even if you do have the games as reference. It's one thing to claim that the Medals, which are known to be of prehistoric and non-human origin, are actually alien Brain in a Jar technology whose fighting nearly caused The End of the World as We Know It for their home world and galaxy. It's another to have this accompanied by the fact that Dr. Hushi isn't dead at all and that Brandon, a Spear Carrier who shows up twice in the whole series, is actually an alien ally of his.
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  • Audience-Alienating Premise: Medarot Girls Mission suffers from this; to begin with, it wasn't made for children even though it was part of a series whose past entries were relatively kid-friendly. That alone might not have done it in, but those who were on board with that were turned off from the game by its Fanservice elements; mainly, the fact that Clothing Damage is used as a game mechanic. Not to mention those who enjoy works with Fanservice were likely looking elsewhere for their fix.
  • Awesome Music:
    • The dub had a surprisingly epic opening theme. An instrumental version would play during fight sequences.
    • The original opening, "Chie to Yuuki da!" is pretty cool too.
    • The song that plays during Samantha's Training Montage in "Space Medaballerina X" is also rather enjoyable to listen to... for the thirty seconds you can.
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    • Uchuu Medarotter X's theme in the original version of the anime is heroic at its best, definitely one of the strong pieces of background music of the anime.
  • Bizarro Episode: "Welcome to Ninja World" is a minor example, notable primarily for its Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann-art style (see Art Shift on the main page) and for Brass acting astonishingly Out of Character, striking flashy poses right alongside Arika rather than being her much more restrained foil. Neither of these really serve as marks against the episode, though, they're just worth noting.
  • Crazy Awesome:
    • Mr. Referee, who is almost super-human and appears out from nowhere.
    • Coach Mountain, who takes his teacher career to the extreme just to protect his students.
  • Creepy Awesome: Beast Master (Robo Emperor) and God Emperor (Mega Emperor) are two of the most popular medabots in the Japanese fandom (according to a 2012 Japanese poll results held at a Nico Nico Douga Live event). The first is Nightmare Fuel material, but the second is one of the most recurrent medabots used in the franchise.
  • Die for Our Ship:
    • Poor Oceana/Hijiki (real model name: Puremermaid). The dub did not help by moving her first appearance (originally the eighth episode) all the way to the filler section... at least thirty episodes later. Especially after the Ship Tease episodes about Metabee/Brass. Cue the fanbase treating her like a rabid whore who wants to steal Metabee from Brass, who is suffering for her "love".
    • An interesting aversion could be Karin since she's dumped on Kouji to make way for Ikki/Arika or Ikki/Kikuhime.
  • Ear Worm: Both the American Opening AND the original Japanese opening could be this for anyone that have heard them.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Lots of one-off and minor recurring characters. The stand-out human examples are Mr. Referee and Couch Mountain. Notable medabots examples include Warbandit, Arcbeetle, Oceana, Femjet and Drackonfly.
    • The Robo-Emperor, for being completely terrifying as well as one of the few villains in the show who's played completely straight.
    • Black Beetle is pretty much the only character from Spirits that is accepted or liked for several reasons: her cool design, being an Evil Counterpart of sorts to Metabee, and her somewhat interesting backstory.
  • Evil Is Cool:
    • Hilariously subverted with Baron and Banisher, who look and sound unbelievably cool... but actually can't fight worth shit.
    • The Robo-Emperor plays this frighteningly straight.
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop: Episode 20 has Ikki in a race against time to either get enough points to represent Japan in the world tournement, or save his mother from the Rubberrobo Gang. He manages to save her, but Metabee's too busted up to fight another battle for the Last Lousy Point... guess we'll get a lesson about how you should do the right thing even if you're not rewarded, and about not pushing your friend beyond his limit... but nope, Ikki is a coward for not wanting to fight, all his friends heckle him and he accepts. Say whaaa...?
  • Fanon: Henry's Broken Ace status in the English dub made fans think in many theories about the reason he took his Phantom Thief and his disguised medafighter identities. Most of them give him more angst than the Japanese version originally went for (which was partly changed in the dub, because it was getting "too dark"note ).
  • Fanon Discontinuity: Many fans either ignore Spirits or they just see it as a separate retooled series.
    • Many don't know of Girls Mission, but those who do ignore it to an even greater extent than they did with Spirits.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: In the first episode, Henry tries to help Ikki out by selling him Medabots parts that are actually in his price range, which basically amount to a dusty box of untouched Metabee armor parts. In a stunning display of ingratitude, Ikki and Erika laugh at him for suggesting such lame and old parts, and for a moment you can see Henry trembling. Henry once had a Metabee as his own partner, but he died prior to the events of the series. Those are his old Metabee's parts in that box.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Ikki and Arika mock Henry for trying to sell them an old KBT model. And then, guess which model does Ikki buy in later?
    • One episode features Intrepid Reporter Seamus MacRaker accusing Ikki of being the Phantom Renegade due to having a suspiciously similar head injury, harassing him to no end. In Medarot DS, Ikki takes up the mantle of Phantom Renegade, going so far as to upgrade Metabee to have an Arcbeetle's chassis.
    • The Tournament Arc has various side characters cosplaying as Space Medafighter X. Come Samantha's turn, the team wins the round by default due to the opposing team cheating. Samantha proudly proclaims "My work here is done," even though she didn't do anything.
  • Ho Yay: Fans tend to ship Hikaru and Ikki... and often do not remember that Ikki is a ten year old kid and that Hikaru is in college.
  • Internet Backdraft: Many Medabots fans hate Spirits with a passion. Do not mention Spirits in a forum, you will regret it forever.
  • Memetic Badass:
    • Coach Mountain is an interesting invoked example as other characters in the show view him as this, though the fandom agrees.
      Erika: I heard he used to be a strong man at the circus and could bench press elephants. I also heard he chiseled out the faces on Mount Rushmore with his bare hands!
      Ikki: And he stopped an erupting volcano by plugging it with his butt!
    • Also, Mr. Referee, he has a reason to be an Ensemble Dark Horse.
  • Moe:
    • On the human side, there's Karin, and Arika, who has a significant moment of it near the end of the first season.
    • On the robot side, you have Saintnurse, Oceana, Brass.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Many Medabots with really cool designs and gimmicks only appear for a single episode in the anime, almost always leaving a great impression.
  • Robo Ship:
    • Metabee/Oceana, Metabee/Brass (which may or may not be more popular than Ikki/Arika)... Metabee/Rokusho... and even Medabot OCs with other Medabot OCs.
    • Also, some Medabots with their own owners... Yeeeeesh. (Although there are fanarts depicting the medabots as humans... it doesn't change the fact that some of their owners are still 8-10 year old kids).
  • Seasonal Rot: Spirits fails hard when it is compared to the original anime... especially in regards to its pacing. The original managed to insert a lot of plot and character subplots in few episodes, and yet never felt (too) rushed. Spirits, on the other hand, stuck with a single plotline (Kam's) through its entire run, and suffered dearly for it, as episodes had to constantly reinforce the status quo to stop the plotline from ending, thus advancing the plot ever so slowly for its 39 episodes. The exclusion of most of the original cast helped to make that more apparent — with less characters, episodes had to focus exclusively on Ikki, Erika and, sometimes, new character Zuru, making stories less varied. Spirits did away with the first series' strengths, and played up its weaknesses.
  • Superlative Dubbing: Arguably, the English dub is one of the best dubs for its time, and for the target audience, as well.
  • Tear Jerker: There is one heartrending episode in the anime that stands out. Fossilkat, a Medabot villain, was once her master’s best friend and soulmate. But her master grew up and tried doing other things; Fossilkat took this to mean she had been discarded like a toy, and ran away. She ended up in a graveyard of discarded Medabots, and over time she took control of them and set out to lead a rebellion on humanity. However, during her rampage, she learns that her master had been permanently heartbroken by her running off. She ceases her rampage, in sheer grief and horror over what has happened. Thankfully, she finds another master to be with.
    • There's also Metabee's dream from episode 51, when it starts Metabee finds himself in an idyllic civilization of Medabots, then progresses to see the Medabots succumb to war. When Ikki enters the dream he finds Metabee holding the lifeless form of his only friend sat under his favorite tree in full Heroic BSoD.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: Adding Fanservice to Medarot Girls Mission didn't really make the fans happy, since previous entries didn't rely on that.
  • They Copied It, So It Sucks!: Medabots is an Affectionate Parody of the Mons genre. You would be amazed at how many negative reviews of the series just don't get that.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • Nothing is explained about Metabee's medal from the time before Phantom Renegade dropped it in the river. It was clearly being delivered between parties in a way that suggested grave importance and secrecy and the Rubberrobo Gang saw fit to kill the deliveryman, but no details ever come forth.
    • Medarot Girls Mission is a game with a largely female cast made for an older audience. Some fans felt that wasn't a bad idea on its own, but using Clothing Damage as a game mechanic, among other Fanservice elements, turned many people away from the game.
  • Toy Ship: Ikki & Arika, and Koji & Karin.
  • Ugly Cute: Compared to Beast Master, God Emperor's popularity may be partly because of his non-Nightmare Fuel "cute" design besides being a powerful medabot/weapon. Kirara (as Lady Retort) controls one of these in Medarot 2.
  • Unfortunate Name: For English speakers, "Ikki", due to the fact that it is pronounced as "icky" in the dub, a slang meaning "Gross". Many a kid chuckled whenever the trailers mentioned lines like "And the winner is... Ikki!" Granted, it's actually pronounced "Ee-Key", but the spelling made many a person think it was pronounced as "Icky".
  • Values Dissonance: In "Phantom Renegade: Unmasked" (season 1, episode 11), Seamus McRaker slanders Ikki because he believes Ikki is the Phantom Renegade. At the end of the episode, Ikki defeats Seamus in a Robattle and Erika publishes an article that clears Ikki's name but Seamus faces no legal comeuppance for slandering a child. What makes things even more stupid is that everyone believes Seamus' stories without giving Ikki the opportunity to explain himself. In fact, everyone ignores that Ikki is a kid while the Phantom Renegade has been proven to be an adult. Adults Are Useless, indeed. The whole episode operates on Rule of Funny.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion:
    • If she hadn't had such a feminine voice, it would have been hard to tell that Spirits Black Beetle is a female-frame Medabot. Hell, the Latin American dub even turned her into a guy. It's that confusing.
    • Ikki for his very girly voice, name that rhymes with "Nikki" and a topknot hairstyle. It doesn't help that there is at least one scene that involves him crossdressing.
  • What Do You Mean, It's for Kids?: The premise of the anime series at first could have gotten the attention of the kids who watched the series back in the day. However, it took several layers of building up the story, with its dark elements (the "Ten Days of Darkness" events, for example) that you could really question yourself about its kids demography... something that became superlative from other similar Mon series out there in the earlier 2000s.

Example of: