If you’re a mecha fan, you’ve almost certainly heard of GaoGaiGar. The final entry in Sunrise’s yuusha series, it starred a cyborg named Guy who piloted the epic lion robot GaoGaiGar to save Earth from the Zonder, a fleet of aliens intent on turning the world into a farmland for their crystals. The series got an OVA sequel, GaoGaiGar FINAL, which was upgraded into Grand Glorious Gathering with some additional footage. And that additional footage helped to establish a link already evident between the show and another by its director, Yoshitomo Yonetani: Betterman.
The actual storylines of Betterman barely cross, if at all. Both shows contain robots, but Betterman concerns itself with robot pilots neutralizing threats caused by a brain mutation called Algernon. The superhuman “Betterman” appears to watch over many of these characters… and also arrives in Grand Glorious Gathering to keep an eye on what’s happening on the GaoGaiGar side of things. And if you’re especially sharp, you may notice that a member of the Ushiyama family is in the main character’s class. He even uses GGG mirror coating technology to build a mirror maze!
But there’s one more Yonetani-directed show that shares a tie to GaoGaiGar — one that actually takes place well before the events of either series. It’s the lesser-known Brigadoon: Marin and Melan Blue.
Brigadoon takes place in a poor village in Japan in 1969, at a time when a mirage of another world appears in the sky. A young girl named Marin is hunted down by otherworldly creatures called Monomakia, but she finds a Monomakia of her own: Melan Blue, who becomes both her personal bodyguard and an important and beloved member of the village.
There’s no true, faultless proof that Brigadoon and GaoGaiGar take place in the same continuity. But there is a bit of a tell that that might be the intent. One of Marin’s neighbors is an American named Mike White, who bears a striking resemblance to Stallion White of GaoGaiGar. And in the latter show, Stallion was the designer and AI model for an electric guitar-wielding robot named… Mike. Stallion and both Mikes also share a voice actor!
All three shows have been translated into English. So if you’re a fan of mind-bending plots, huge robots, and crazy action… why not try a three-show marathon?