Gad Guard ( ƒKƒhƒK[ƒh ) GONZO Digimation/Fuji TV/Media Factory, 2003 U.S. Distributor Pending. Directed by Hiroshi Nishikiori (Azumanga Daioh, Angelic Layer). Not Rated. Contains violence and mature situations. by areaseven - http://areaseven.net/ Hajiki Sanada is a boy trying to make a living as a delivery boy while still attending school at a local Catholic church. One day, when he falls off his scooter during one of his deliveries, he discovers that the parcel he's carrying contains a cubic object known as a "Gad". A few hours later, during a ruckus on a back alley, the Gad suddenly materializes into a powerful and sentient robot. From that point, Hajiki names the robot "Lightning" and calls it his own. Story: B+ The first episode is very hard to follow, as nothing much happens. But the action starts to pick up after episode 2 and the fun just doesn't stop right there. Animation: A Leave it to GONZO (Full Metal Panic!, Vandread) to put some funky CG in this series. Character designs by Masahiro Aizawa (Sento Yosei Yukikaze, Orphen) and mecha designs by Toshiharu Murata (You're Under Arrest, Hellsing) give Gad Guard a retro look that feels a bit like The Big-O. Soundtrack: A Kohei Tanaka (Gunbuster, Mobile Fighter G-Gundam) and Kazuhiko Sawaguchi supply a trippy mix of jazz and orchestral music to this series. Opening and ending themes by PE'Z aren't Seatbelts material, but still catchy and flavorful. Cast Gad Guard features Kenichi Suzumura (Shin in Macross Zero, Kamui in X) as Hajiki, Fumiko Orikasa (Chise in SaiKano, Pacifica in Scrapped Princess) as Arashi, Junichi Suwabe (Fuuma in X, Masami in Someday's Dreamers) as Katana, Kikuko Inoue (Belldandy in Ah! My Goddess, Mizuho in Please Teacher!) as Catherine, Masayo Kurata (Karinka in Steel Angel Kurumi, Shinobu in Love Hina) as Aiko, Masashi Ebara (Bolt Crank in Eat-Man, Cowboy Andy in Cowboy Bebop) as Jack, Tamaki Nakamishi (Shin in Pretear) as Satsuki, Yuko Sato (Yoh in Shaman King, Sanae in The Soultaker) as Takumi, and Unshou Ishizuka (Guld in Macross Plus, Jet Black in Cowboy Bebop) as Hachizuka. The Bottom Line If you're into retro mecha designs, check out Gad Guard. You won't be disappointed.