If you grew up in the 70s, you may have come across a cartoon known as “Battle of the Planets”, or alternatively as “G-Force”, about a team of five teenages dressed in bird-like combat suits fighting the outer-space terrorist forces of the evil Gallactor.
This 1972 series was originally known as “Gatchaman” in Japan, and along with Speed Racer, it was often one of the first exposures American children of that generation had to Japanese anime.
On June 16th, 2005, ADV Films will be releasing the first of their English DVDs of the popular series with the original animated content. Prior to the US release, Hanna-Barbara removed large chunks of animation and story elements they felt were too violent for American audiences. The company also changed various characters and introduced new animation of a robot mascot for the Science Ninja Team to make up for the footage removed.
The animation in the series is obviously from the early 70s, long before technology made quality animation techniques possible in a weekly series, but the show was always very original and adult in its own way, and you can see the influence the show had on other Japanese series that came afterward. This re-release will be a great piece of childhood nostalgia for those of us who grew up long before Japanese anime became common afternoon-entertainment for kids.