I can't see any way of praising this show without spoilers... so i'm not even going to try.
Tl;dr: I really liked this show and Personally think it's the best show this season.
From here on out spoilers (i will try to avoid them but it cannot be helped)
Personal Bias: I don't like mech anime cause 98% of the time is takes place in space and space scares me.
So... Ensign Ledo, a pilot in the Galactic army has finally earned enough hours of servitude to the army to go live as a civilian for 2 weeks in avalon. Avalon in a space colony since thanks to the Hideaze they don't have a planet they can call their own. On avalon civilions job is simply to procreate so the army will have enough soldiers to defend avalon. If one is too weak to do either of these tasks they are culled for the good of humanity.
In his final battle as a soldier somethign goes wrong and after passing through a warp gate improperly he is sent hurtling across space and lands on a planet that is completely covered in water... even odder then that the atmosphere is completely breathable and there are even human colonies who have no idea about the fight between humans and Hideaze. How is a person who's sole purpose in life has been taken away from them by chance going to survive when he can't even communicate.
Well... luckily for Ledo he's got a giant mech pilot interface system known as Chamber. Chamber has a myriad of skills one of which being after listening to them converse he is eventually able to help translate. Ledo, being stuck there also manages to learn the language over time.
we find out pretty quick that no, there is no hope of Ledo getting back to the army... but he is stil la soldier so he does his best to protect the people.... this ends up backfiring because when you have technology far superior to others they grow to fear you.
However a girl named Amy decides to try and understand and even befriend him since they look like they are the same age.
the show from there is about Culture clash from two people who both grew up as humans in vastly different situations.
things only get worse as it appears the Hideaze have invaded earth... or have they?
i think i can stop there cause i do not want to spoil everything... but any less that that and i doubt i could get across why this show is my favorite.
ok.... i will admit when i first started watching i kind of though of the story like a spin off to macross. minor spoiler in macross: zentradi are humans who genetically altered themselves to be giant and super strong.... so in my mind this was like the moment before the zentradi made themselves giant... i dunn owhy that helped but for some of the slower eps it made me giggle thinking like that.
also just to get it out of the way on my panic attack meter
like Macross this didn't give me any panic attacks... granted it barely takes place in space... so... yay~
i would like to say everything... but i'll be more specific.
the colours: the way you see the homogenized colours of the space humans compared to the bright and colourful crew members of the gargantia... it just creates this wonderful colour story of one being super clean and steril btu also lifeless while the other is alive and booming and fun with a wide range of emotion.
character design: each character is unique and easy to tell apart from each other... they even held a contest and 15 fan made designs can be see in the background of a shot in the final ep (for like 4 seconds but hey, i'd be jumping up and down if that happened to me)
The music: it just fits the mood perfectly and to be honest this show made me cry more then once (and tear up more then that)
The writing: done by the same person who did PMMM so you know you're going to get some lovely commentary on part of the world, in this case technology and nature vs. nurture.
The animation: so... darn... pretty... even 3d things like chamber mesh perfectly in this animated world.
Transition: i think seeing ledo's character arc over the course of the 13 eps is one of the best character arcs i've ever seen.... it's not suddenly turn on a dime he's a civilian.... it's just so well done.
The not so good:
despite the series length (13 episodes) there are a few eps near the middle that are a little slow and to counteract the slowness they up the fanservice... ugh... it just felt lazy.... cause there are things i felt they could have explored a bit more.... but it's only about 3 episodes... maybe even only 2 that are bad for this. i want to say it fits the theme of the show, going from high action war to fairly peaceful planet.... but no it just feels like "oh no we gotta tell this show stuff... lets have a bathing suit ep and then another with sexy dancing... that'll keep em watching while we set up the next plot point."
um.... if you don't like mech out of space stories you'll hate this one? i guess? i can't think of anyways...
actually no the only bad thing is that no one has said they have licensed it yet.... i would love a NISA boxset of this (i can dream~)
If you haven't seen the show yet please give it a shot, it's over at Crunchyroll for free.
MAJOR SPOILERS FROM HERE ON
Seriously i'm about to give away the ending... but it's something i really wanna talk about...
When i first heard this creepy robot interface talk the way he talks i was like
"oh boy this is going to be a situation when the robot will decide the human isn't doing the right thing since he's being swayed by emotion i better take over to deal with the threat for the good of humanity."
I was wrong...... kinda.
Thank you Gargantia for taking my expectation and going "no no no this isn't gunna go how you think"
though.............. there is that kinda.... nah i wont spoil it
but seriously what chamber did at the end was wonderful and i loved it
just such a wonderful show.
go watch it!