Title: Asu no Egao no Tame Ni | Artist: Matsuzawa Yumi | Show: GateKeepers

Description: This is the opening to GateKeepers, a great classic-style hero anime produced by Gonzo. (It’s actually an adaptation of a Playstation game, with the plot and characters shuffled around a bit.) This show is basically the archetypal Light-Side Chuunibyou show; if they’re not trying to emulate some dark, edgy shitpile, they wanna be this. It’s set in Tokyo in 1969, where high school teenagers awaken the power to open Gates to other planes, which they draw power from to fight the alien Invaders (yes, that’s their name). They are led by a secret organization called A.E.G.I.S., which stands for something but doesn’t really matter, while the aliens are more-or-less secretly led by one of their classmates who uses an overpowered, corrupted black Gate.

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Our plucky, dense hero has access to the Gate of Violent Wind, which he usually uses to make his wooden sword able to slash through armor and buildings, or to project ranged attacks. (He later uses it to summon a GIANT MECHA. Gates are fuckin’ weird.) Other powers include:

  • A light-based Gate for healing, which can be focused into a bow for archery attacks
  • A Gate summoned by playing piano that creates illusions (and makes the sound cause inexplicable physical harm to Invaders. Gates are fuckin’ weird.)
  • A physical enhancement Gate for punching the shit out of people while running rings around them (and allowing her to pick up and throw large, heavy things like GODDAMNED TANKS)
  • A Gate that enables elemental martial arts techniques (and can summon a giant angry panda. Gates are fuckin’ weird.)
  • A Gate that confers absolute defense
  • A very powerful Gate that summons snow and ice in ridiculous quantity (and also prevents its 800+ year old user from aging. Gates are fuckin’ weird.)

Why You Picked It: The song itself is cheerful and lively with a great beat. The lyrics are about keeping hope alive and never giving up, the usual bubbly optimistic hero type of thing. It’s catchy as all hell, though, so it’s earned a permanent spot in several of my anime music playlists.

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The animation is mostly the “everybody running” trope, giving an action shot to the entire cast. A special WTF award goes to the random thigh-shot of Ruriko to show off the quiver of arrows she keeps under her skirt. Totally unnecessary, especially out of context when you have no idea what the hell that even is unless you’ve seen her draw from it. It’s always a very quick motion too, so if you’re not paying attention you could very well watch half the show and still not know what the hell that thing is on her leg that they keep showing off in the opening.

...Totally not speaking from experience there. Nope.