Gephyrophillia | Watch This Space #22

Originally Posted on 01/28/2003 by Jeff Harris

Dai-Guard, Evangelion, Nadesico, Robotech, Gigantor, and The Iron Giant: One Crazy Week in FebruaryAnd to think, people thought it was going to be just Gundam and Transformers.

Toonami has dropped a major bombshell on the masses this morning confirming the much-rumored Giant Robot Week on the final week of February. However, the announcement also confirmed that the special Toonami event won't be limited to just reruns of Gundam shows and Transformers Armada. In short, when they say Giant Robot Week, they mean GIANT ROBOT WEEK! So big, they're actually going to the anime company responsible for bringing a bulk of the finest mecha franchises ever made, ADV Films. Yeah, ADV Films. Toonami's Giant Robot Week marks the first time ADV Films programming has been seen outside of premium cable networks like the STARZ! Action Channel and Showtime Beyond.

Here is the press release verbatium:

Giant Robot Week Takes Over Toonami Showcase of Anime Featuring Giant Robots Begins Monday, Feb. 24 from 4-5 p.m. (ET, PT)

It's a battle of giant metal machines during Toonami's first Giant Robot Week, Monday, Feb. 24 - Friday, Feb. 28 from 4-5 p.m. (ET, PT) each day. The weeklong special event presents some of the best action/anime series ever created starring huge fighting machines. Giant Robot Week comes to a smashing conclusion with a special presentation of the acclaimed animated feature The Iron Giant on Friday, Feb. 28, at 8 p.m. (ET, PT).

"Giant robot" series have been a staple of anime since its beginnings, and Cartoon Network pulled out all of the stops in search of the best examples of this genre ever with series such as Dai-Guard and Nadesico, which have never before been seen on TV in the U.S., as well as Evangelion and Robotech. Giant Robot Week also will include segments from the classic series Gigantor along with Cartoon Network's first original "giant robot" short, Low Brow.

Evangelion (yes Toonami faithful, hell has froze over!) - A deadly war is waged between the mysterious aliens, the Angels and mankind's last hope, the Evangelions. The giant bio-mechanical Evangelions are the only forces that can withstand the Angels' defense fields long enough to attack the massive invaders. (Monday, Feb. 24 and Tuesday, Feb. 25, at 4:30 p.m. (ET, PT))

Dai-Guard - Giant invaders have attacked the earth and the only force strong enough to defend the planet is a giant robot, Dai-Guard. The only problem is that the robot is defective. A young team of workers must stop the aliens, while concealing the defects in their robot. (Thursday, Feb. 27 and Friday, Feb. 28, at 4 p.m. (ET, PT))

Nadesico - The planet is under attack and the space fleets are powerless to stop the invasion. An inexperienced crew consisting of a cook, the General's ditsy daughter, geeks and misfits are sent into space to save Earth. (Monday, Feb. 24 - Wednesday, Feb. 26, at 4 p.m. (ET, PT))

Robotech (yes, hell has frozen over twice!) - Robotech Defense Force, led by Captain Glova and his cadets, is the only hope for survival after giant alien spaceships invade Earth. (Wednesday, Feb. 26 - Friday, Feb. 28, at 4:30 p.m. (ET, PT))

"Our goal at Toonami is to bring the finest action cartoons out there to our fans, and there's no doubt we love 'giant robot' shows," said Sean Akins, Toonami Creative Director. "When we first started talking about Giant Robot Week, these are the series that popped into our heads. This will be an incredible week for our viewers."

To conclude Giant Robot Week, Cartoon Network will air The Iron Giant, the heartwarming 1999 feature about a young boy and the alien robot that crashes into his life. Featuring the voice talents of Jennifer Aniston, Harry Connick, Jr. and Vin Diesel, this animated feature tells the tale of Hogarth Hughes, a young boy who lives in a small town in Maine during the Cold War. When a 50-foot robot comes crashing into this sleepy town, Hogarth catches up with him and quickly develops a friendship with the misunderstood Iron Giant. When news of the robot's existence gets out sparking government suspicion, Hogarth must try his best to hide the massive robot from his mom, the local scrap-yard beatnik and a dubious government agent.

Okay, let's recap. Three major ADV Films franchises are airing on Toonami for one week only. One of those franchises, Neon Genesis Evangelion, is actually coming on Toonami, a place NOBODY EVER THOUGHT IT WOULD COME! Gigantor and Low Brow will be intermixed in the week. Oh, and The Iron Giant will invade CCF that night. Just when it seems like all is lost, just when it seems like Toonami is being pushed aside by the network, you get a jewel of confidence like this. Oh, and right smack against Kids' WB programming too. Perhaps the long national nightmare will be over and a new reinassance will begin in February. Heck, .hack//SIGN is about to premiere on Saturday, and there are strong rumors of quite a number of series coming to the block in the fall, from a pair of video-game icons to a returning Toonami favorite. Guess I was just a bit pessimistic after all.

The Next Chapter is about to begin . . . are you ready?

Until we are one, later.
Jeff Harris
CNX Creator/Webmaster
January 28, 2003


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