The Art of Studio Gainax

Experimentation, Style and Innovation at the Leading Edge of Anime

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About the Book

Formed by a small group of university students in the early 1980s, Studio Gainax is now one of the most adventurous and widely esteemed anime companies on the scene. And it is fascinating for its unique approach to animation. Formal experimentation, genre-straddling, self-reflexivity, unpredictable plot twists, a gourmet palate for stylishness, proverbially controversial endings, and a singularly iconoclastic worldview are some of the hallmarks.
This documentation of the studio’s achievements provides a critical overview of both the company and its films: in-depth examinations of particular titles that best represent the company’s overall work, including television series such as Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water and Neon Genesis Evangelion, and feature films such as Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honneamise and Gunbuster vs. Diebuster. Each chapter highlights the contribution made by a specific production to the company’s progress.

About the Author(s)

Dani Cavallaro has written widely about literature, cultural theory, and anime. She lives in London.

Bibliographic Details

Dani Cavallaro
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 240
Bibliographic Info: filmography, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2009
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3376-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-0070-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

PREFACE      1

1. A Brief History of Studio Gainax      5

2. Royal Space Force: The Wings of Honneamise (1987)      20

3. Gunbuster (1988)      26

4. Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water (1990–1991)      40

5. Otaku no Video (1991)      53

6. Neon Genesis Evangelion I—The TV Series (1995–1996)      59

7. Neon Genesis Evangelion II—The Movies (1997; 2007-2008)      78

8. His and Her Circumstances (1998–1999)      111

9. FLCL (2000)      123

10. Mahoromatic—Automatic Maiden (2001–2002)      141

11. Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi (2002)      154

12. This Ugly Yet Beautiful World (2004)      160

13. The Diebuster Saga (2004–2006)      178

14. The Anime Magic of Studio Gainax      201

FILMOGRAPHY      205

APPENDIX: ANIME PRODUCTIONS WITH STUDIO GAINAX MEMBERS      213

CHAPTER NOTES      217

BIBLIOGRAPHY      223

INDEX      227