One day, first-year high school student Yomogi Asanaka meets a mysterious man called Gauma. Feeling indebted to Yomogi for sharing his meal with him, the starving stranger proclaims himself to be a “Kaiju User” and swear to pay Yomogi back in kind. When a giant monster suddenly attacks the town, Yomogi and Gauma, along with passersby Yume Minami, Koyomi Yamanaka, and Chise Asukagawa are also swept up in the battle against the Kaiju. Their only hope: the enigmatic giant robot called Dynazenon.
Caesar E.S. (The Indonesian Anime Times)
Inside of director Akira Amemiya are two directors: one is the man who made the irreverent and loud masterpiece that is Inferno Cop. The other is the man who directed, and mostly key animated by himself the Japan Animator Expo short Denkou Choujin Gridman: boys invent great hero (2015), and was in charge of the following SSSS.Gridman (2018), an exquisitely crafted and surprisingly poignant love letter to tokusatsu show Gridman the Hyper Agent (1993).
I say this because watching SSSS.Gridman, it’s hard to think that this is the same guy who made Inferno Cop. And what you get with SSSS.Dynazenon is more of what the former had to offer, which is so far removed from the latter: a teenage drama that can often show surprising depth and isn’t afraid to dive into issues of alienation and mental trauma, to the background of dynamic, explosive, and beautifully animated giant robot fights. If you enjoyed Gridman, then you will absolutely enjoy Dynazenon for improving on it’s formula. Special mention needs to be said of the show’s combination of 3DCG and 2D animation for it’s titular robot and Kaiju, of which they’ve improved on and perfected from Gridman. Dynazenon knows when to use which technique, and the result feels seamless to the point that I wonder which is which. Though, does it really matter when all of the shots look so fantastic?
By now it’s clear to see that director Amemiya loves Gridman. SSSS.Gridman was also a show about how the fictional heroes we create can save us, and I can’t help but think that the original Gridman in a way also impacted the man along those lines. Perhaps though, the best thing about Dynazenon is that it feels like Amemiya stepping into his own shoes and using the Gridman mythos to create something truly his own. Dynazenon‘s story hints at it being a show about overcoming trauma via group therapy (in this case piloting a robot together), which certainly isn’t anything you would find in the original Gridman. But it’s an intriguing premise nonetheless, and it’s always such an absolute joy to see creators come into their own like this.
SSSS.Dynazenon is currently streaming on Funimation
Facts and Figures
|Source material||SSSS.Gridman spin-off, part of the “Gridman Universe” metaseries with the original Gridman the Hyper Agent|
|Casts||Chika Anzai as Chise Asukagawa
Daiki Hamano as Gauma
Junya Enoki as Yomogi Asanaka
Shion Wakayama as Yume Minami
Yuichiro Umehara as Koyomi Yamanaka
|Director||Akira Amemiya (Inferno Cop, SSSS.Gridman)|
|Series composition||Keiichi Hasegawa (SSSS.Gridman, Ultraman Dyna, Ultraman Nexus)|
|Character design||Masaru Sakamoto (SSSS.Gridman)|
|3D director||Kōji Ichikawa (SSSS.Gridman, Mobile Suit Gundam AGE, Vividred Operation)|
|Dynazenon design||Tsuyoshi Nonaka|
|Opening theme||“In Perfection” by Masayoshi Ooishi|
|Ending theme||“Strobe Memory” by Maaya Uchida|
|Broadcast date||2 April 2021 (1355 GMT/0055 WIB), 3 April 2021 (0255 JST)|
Screenshots and Trailer
The Indonesian Anime Times