In 2104 the world is consumed by small scale wars across the planet. The stop these wars from escalating, the mysterious Dancouga Nova always intervenes on the side of the weak to ensure that no one wins or loses. Aoi, Kurara, Sakuya, and Johnny are all relatively normal people who find themselves kidnapped, for lack of a better word, by the organization Dragon Hive that controls Dancouga Nova to act as pilots for the super robot. While at first reluctant they eventually agree to be the pilots. Dancouga Nova consists of four robots that combine to form it. Aoi, the fiery redhead and gar leader of the group, pilots Nova Eagle; Kurara, a merciless detective and firearms expert, pilots Nova Liger; Sakuya, a hapless hobo, pilots Nova Rhino; and Johnny, a salaryman who knows way too much about useless things, pilots Nova Elephant. They are aided by the creepy Tanaka, commander of Dragon’s Hive; Ruuriruri, the bubbly counselor who ends every sentence with desu; Seimi, the busty mechanic for Dancouga; and FS, the mysterious benefactor of the group. There’s also the enemy super robot Ardaigun and its unknown pilot who appear halfway through. While Dancouga fights to prevent wars, it is clear there is a different reason for its existence, and while stopping small wars is one thing, Dancouga will have to evolve into a god if it hopes to save the planet.
Make no mistake: Dancouga Nova is not meant to be an instant classic. It’s a proudly second tier super robot show that can be fun if you just don’t think about it (amazing thing, otaku not overanalyzing a show). Meant to be a remake of the 80’s series Dancougar, which it really isn’t, Dancouga Nova just tries to supply as many interesting fights as possible in the hopes of being entertaining. It mostly succeeded at that for me. One reason is the characters I all liked a lot. Aoi is probably the best. One, because she’s a hot-blooded female pilot which you really don’t see enough of, and she’s sexy in a mature way, another thing you don’t see that often these days. The rest of the cast is entertaining too, from the gun obsessed yet cute Kurara, to Ruuriruri’s insane desuing. Dancouga Nova the robot was pretty cool, too, with some nice attacks. The Maxgod form at the end was particularly nice.
But of course Dancouga Nova has some pretty bad qualities to it. One is the convulated plot which takes a complete 180 towards the end that doesn’t make a lot of sense. Nothing exactly original about any of the plot either. The animation wasn’t stellar either. While never quite reaching massive levels of QUALITY, you could tell they didn’t have a really big budget. The robots aside from Dancouga were often indistinct and bland. Even Dancouga suffered from a lack of detail many times. The rest of the characters aside from the main cast were also uninspired carictures. Fortunately the animation never skimped where it mattered: sexy fanservice of Aoi and Kurara. Yeah, you can tell where my priorities are. I can’t even remember what the music sounded like, if that says something about it. The OP was pretty nice though, enough so for me to download it.
It’s hard to say why exactly I like Dancouga Nova. Probably the same reason I like Demonbane; that the characters are so good to me that I can forgive the often lackluster animation. In that regard Dancouga Nova is probably an acquired taste, suitable only for mecha fans who have seen plenty of good and bad series and know when to turn their minds off to enjoy a show. At least I can tell you Dancouga is a hot-blooded mecha show, so no emo pilots here (reason I had to stop watching Gigantic Formula after two episodes). I really want to see the original Dancougar now, though.