Eiji, Toga, and the rest of the Gran Knights return for a second season
of Gravion, entitled Gravion Zwei. ("Zwei" being German
for two.) The first season was filled with cliches, gratuitous fan
service and predictable plots, and this second series follows in the first's
footsteps. There isn't a lot of recap though, so you really
should view the first series before you start on this one.
A little bit of time has passed since the ending of the first season.
The Zeravire, a giant alien species bent on the destruction of the Earth,
have stopped their attacks for the time being. During the lull, the
EFA (Earth Federation Alliance) has developed and mass produced a model
of the Gravion, referred to as Grand Troopers. Training for the Gravion
pilots has slacked off a little bit too, and Eiji spends his spare time
gambling with the maids, and losing of course. Things don't stay
clam for long though, as the Zeravire renew their offensive and the Knights
have to go into action again.
The attacks by the aliens are actually a minor part of the show.
Most of the time is taken up by situation comedy type situations.
In the second episode, several of Eiji's friends from school find Sandman's
castle and get a tour. The day ends with a picnic where several of
the buxom females in the series get inebriated and start making passes
at everyone. In another show, the entire group goes to a hot springs
spa where all the typical gags that have been done in every show from Tenchi
Muyo to Love Hina are gone through one more time. Of course,
there's plenty of fan service in this episode, to the point where it get
This really isn't a lot to this series. Characterization is replaced
by fan service and action scenes take the place of plot development.
Each episode starts off with some situation that is supposed to be humorous,
Eiji dressed as a maid doing the dishes for example, and then wraps up
with an action scene. Things unfold in a very predictable manner,
and there seemed to be even less plot in these episodes than in the first
There was very little continuity in this season too. The search
for Eiji's brother has all but been forgotten, and the Grand Troopers,
that start off the first episode don't even make an appearance after the
first five minutes. The way they were presented, I had assumed
that they would play a big part in the series, but they just fell by the
The dialog is so bad in parts that it is unintentionally funny.
Lines like "Become the fangs that gnaw at evil." sound like they belong
in a pulp novel from the 40's more than a current anime. Sandman's
pithy observations on life are also laughable: "True friendship is
the greatest power, strong enough to vanquish even the greatest foe" is
just plain stupid.
Thin plots, lousy humor and bad dialog make this a fairly forgettable
set of shows.
Like most anime that is put out nowadays, this disc offers the choice
of a stereo Japanese track with optional English subtitles or an English
dub in 5.1. I alternated between tracks as I watched the show, and I had
a slight preference for the original language track, but thought the English
dub was fine. The English track was a little more full, but it wasn't as
powerful as I was hoping. They didn't make full use of the subwoofer channel
during the fight scenes. The English track did have more punch than the
Japanese track did, just not as much as I was expecting. Both tracks sounded
fine, with no distortion or other defects.
Like the previous series, the video was presented with a 1.33:1 aspect
ration and looked pretty good. The image was still fairly soft, but the
colors were bright and accurate. There were only a few instances of aliasing,
a digital artifact that usually plagues animation, but no other major defects.
A nice looking DVD.
This disc includes a clean opening and closing, a series of character
profiles and design sketches. The biggest extra is a 16 minute
interview with the English voice cast. They talk about their take
on the characters and what they like about the show. There
are also several trailers.
This second series of Gravion isn't any better than the first.
If anything, there is even less continuity and plot than there was in the
first series. They have forgotten about the mystery of Eiji's sister
that was one of the only interesting aspects of the first season, and made
the shows more episodic. If you've seen the first series, this is
just more of the same. Rent it.