They are by far the best anime! We counts down the best anime to come out all the time, including the likes of Sol Bianca, Burn Up! W, Sol Bianca: Taiyou no Fune, and more!
50: Sol Bianca
Japanese: SOL BIANCA (ソル·ビアンカ)
MAL Score: 6.34
Five female pirates pilot the Sol Bianca, a starship with a higher level of technology than any other known. With it, they seek out riches, such as the Gnosis, an legendary item of power, and pasha, the most valuable mineral in the galaxy. Along the way, they must consider a stowaway’s quest to save the one he loves, and seek revenge against those that have wronged them.
It’s not enough for them to wield these snaking lethal weapons, but their ship has to have an epic version too, slicing and dicing everything in its path. Their entrance is bold and assured, the direction patiently keeping our heroines’ faces from us until the perfect moment, like Spielberg’s reveal of Harrison Ford only after he’s whipped a gun out of a rascal’s hand at the beginning of his first Indy movie. Yes I just mentioned Sol Bianca and Spielberg’s Raiders in the same sentence, sometimes you have to be compassionate in life, at least that’s the hokey message of the first episode of this OVA.
Ok, Sol Bianca has the same template as Outlaw Star, Cowboy Bebop and dozens of other sci-fi anime, and is crammed with every anime cliché you can think of, but at least it stars a fun group of characters squabbling and exchanging wisecracks you’ve heard a million times before but still grin at anyway.
The pirate crew of the Sol Bianca have multi-coloured bleached hair styles (you can tell because their eyebrows are still black!) and outfits resembling Power Rangers. This is the end of the 80’s. A time when we weren’t afraid of colours; when good guys could wear something lighter than grey and bad guys weren’t cloaked in shadow all the time but confident enough to walk around looking like 80’s pop band rejects.
A planet featured in the first episode is run by a generic despotic ruler, reminiscent of Street Fighter’s M. Bison, and dressed a bit like Irresponsible Captain Tylor (minus the overcoat), though obviously lacking that guy’s amiable attitude. Lacking in anything remarkable at all really which is a shame as we all love a scenery-chewing bad guy, but this guy isn’t even peckish. People on this planet are oppressed and working in mines. Mining for what exactly? Who knows? When you want to oppress, you just chuck them in mines!
Despite the fact that the episode’s shenanigans are kick-started by a boy stowaway on a ship populated by all females, there is no lousy harem atmosphere, no pace-stopping sexual hijinks. Instead the humour is breezy good fun with the occasional blood-letting violence sprinkled throughout. The first episode’s story is a completely forgettable liberation-fest, although I did find the last few scenes accidentally resonating a bit, for both the concept behind the idea and also an idealistic speech about a time before planes hit skyscrapers coupled with an iconic 20th century image.
The second episode is much more fun. Thank God for Die Hard practically inventing the ‘exciting stuff happening in a contained environment’ template, and thank God for anime running with it. Ok, the generics still continue, but it’s just more enjoyable watching a thriller cliché than a war resistance one.
The pirates this time are attempting to steal something expensive on a luxury ship but confront resistance in the form of bullets and thugs. The story moves on, but continually keeps the action inside spaceship interiors keeping with the semi-claustrophobic theme of the episode. There’s also development on the pirate crew’s ship itself, a character in its own right. Definitely one of the best spaceships in anime, with cool design, mysterious interior and history, it’s like a mobile futuristic apartment that just happens to have destructive capabilities included.
So with the second episode everything is funnier, dramatic, more action packed and entertaining and we finally see the potential of Sol Bianca, a potential not yet reached but still attainable if the franchise continues with sequels. With a bit more passion infused into the production, this franchise could be something special and at least get within whipping distance of anime like Bebop, and with the all-female crew would have just enough to make it distinguish itself from its rivals.
As it stands, Sol Bianca is easily lost in that crowd, as is evident from MAL’s low statistic for the show, although a high statistic obviously isn’t a marker for quality, so maybe one day another Sol Bianca will be released with a better script and director involved, and will become a cult hit.
The characters in the OVA are fun, although the eldest and one who appears to be the leader is so laid back it’s like someone spiked her drink. She wanders around in a daze and doesn’t actually do much at all, which is a waste. The art is of course early 90’s, but the animation is smooth as anything produced post millennium. The music is typical 80’s synth rock/pop that dates it but also gives it charm that all 80’s/90’s anime have.
Sol Bianca ends on a baffling last scene that’s begging for elaboration, leaving you unsatisfied but wanting a bit more, which represents the entire OVA very well.
It’s strengths are in its rich artwork and worldbuilding, its presciently-executed sci-fi for its time, and the overall badassery.
The artwork is pretty phenomenal throughout whenever it’s not a character model. If it’s a ship, or a robot, or a docking bay, it looks incredible. They go fairly well into their world without overexplaining anything considering the small span of time the series uses. After spending a lot of the past few years watching new shows whose action sequences always seem a little rehashed, every perspective they used looked fresh and unused when dealing with space combat.
The Sci-fi concepts are very well-executed and today might seem pretty par for the course, but at the time were pretty advanced. The main one I saw consistently at play was the idea of people resigning and not continuing to try useless stuff when things were out of their control, something which is something which is realistic to any venture involving a large or widely-skilled crew doing any task, and the only other series I’ve seen the mentality showcased is Legend of the Galactic Heroes. But while it executes the treatment of the situations well, it doesn’t overexplain itself and lets the sci-fi do its job of providing the impossible.
Finally, the badassery. The story doesn’t really shy away from being a simple action story, but it avoids many cliches. Each character is depicted as strong in their own right, and they aren’t ever stuck in cliche situations. Each has a developed personality and for a 90’s anime about an all-female space pirate crew, it manages to avoid many of the “Men Writing Women” tropes (although when they do strike it hurts), and mainly ends up being a fairly decent representation of strong women in action roles. While a little OP-ish and plot armory, the characters all represent their own set of awesome skills and the action is fun and often awe-inspiring.
The Flaws. The mentionable problems of this anime are the character art, the shallowness of the plot, and the unexpected and pointless nudity.
The character art is a juxtaposition with the non-character art in that it’s just bad. Granted this is about normal for early 90’s anime, but the voices and mouth motions are extremely off-sync, and the scenes with any character motion which aren’t full-action scenes are usually very poorly done. But generally speaking I don’t think that’s a very strong criticism at all; the non-character art and action animations are so mindblowing they more than make up for this.
The plot was also not nearly as deep as it needed to be. I suspect there’s a lot more written to this world which could have been included if more material had been made, but with the space we had there could have been more done. Again though, this criticism isn’t so important due to the fact that it’s very good at filling out the role of a simple action series. Not everything HAS to have the kind of metaphorical depth some media carries with it, but this could have worked more with the space it had and didn’t, which I think is somewhat of a negative mark.
Finally, the random and unnecessary nudity in what could otherwise be a very pro-feminist type series. The first time it happened it seemed just sort of forced and weird, especially juxtaposed with the general lack of ero fanservice in camera angles or plotline. The second time it was just gratuitous and had me really wondering what the hell they were thinking putting it there. Very strong mark against the series.
All in all, this is a really enjoyable two OVAs and is a good watch for fun, but nothing mind-blowing on an intellectual level. Watch it for badass space pirates rendered in that beautiful early-90’s hand animation.
49: Burn Up! W
English: Burn-Up W: On the Case & In your Face
MAL Score: 6.36
When crime and terrorism go out of control in Tokyo, the police unleash Team Warrior – a band of highly-skilled and completely reckless band of female cops. Featuring loose cannon Rio, triggerhappy Maya and ace hacker Lilica, Team Warrior will get the job done, regardless of the budget of the mission.
This four episode OVA is hard to review since the first two eps are completely different the the second two but here goes.
first off, the art is pretty typical anime style, but they did a good job with it. The characters arn’t plain at all, and the colors and overall artwork a really good.
These first two episodes are solely for introducing the characters and getting to know them. They are definately comedies with minimal amounts of action, but within all this, there is a plot building in the background which will come into play later.
There is no character development or any intricate interactions, relational or otherwise, these episodes or more or less just some fan service and entertainment.
This is where the anime turns into something cool. These episodes build upon the plot that was revealed in the first couple, and which will come about later in the full series. These two episodes are packed with action and fighting and death.
The series takes on a serious and dark tone and makes it all the better. Still no character development but who cares, this show IS about babes with guns. This show probably doesn’t actually deserve a 9 rating but i though those last two episodes were pretty bad ass.
Girls and guns, fun to watch but dont expect a masterpiece.
and as a note, i definitely recommend the sub since the dub is pretty crappy.
This review of Burn Up! W is spoiler free!
Synopsis: When crime and terrorism go out of control in Tokyo, the police unleash Team Warrior – a band of highly-skilled and completely reckless band of female cops. Featuring loose cannon Rio, trigger happy Maya and ace hacker Lilica, Team Warrior will get the job done, regardless of the budget of the mission.
The first act of the series begins with Mr. Negishi’s prowess for good-looking sakuga, as well as his notorious, ecchi-filled taste in humor! Rio is dropped from a helicopter, in place of an idol, as a body double in a nude bungee jump! The following episodes, before the climax, center around Burn Up’s referential comedy, with a touch of Robot Carnival’s mechanical brand of existentialism. Rio gets explored more intimately than ever, as well as Nanvel, which is implied to be a transsexual! Or a hermaphrodite! The show doesn’t go any further than the lecherous Yūji making a bewildered expression when her dress flies up.
Excess excelled in expositing the characters to the viewer and creating an atmosphere to laugh along with their crazy hijinks, but W is much more about the hardships of being an underpaid cop with gruesome missions towering over one’s daily life. There’s an arc where Rio goes to sell her underwear to a seedy shop and her roommate has a touching moment with her, when she asks her to have more integrity in herself. I can’t dive any deeper into this, without giving away a few of the most scathing cuts that this OVA has to offer!
The framing of friendship and sentimental scenes like that is what hit this OVA out of the ballpark, boosting it up from a 6/10 to a 7! Like how the visual iconography of Gall Force would compel someone to buy a t-shirt that has blobby moe girls with guns, the scenes of W carry that same kind of paradoxical phenomenon that would inspire an avid fan to collect the memorabilia like hotcakes! The fighting scenes are vivid and create an intense amount of satisfaction as the girls battle Cerberus!
Hiroshi Negishi (director)
* Ai Tenchi Muyō
* Bounty Dog: Getsumen no Ibu
* Chōon Senshi Borgman, localized as “Sonic Solider Borgman”
* Divergence Eve and Divergence Eve 2: Misaki Chronicles
* Kei Ō Seiki Bīsuto Sanjūshi, localized as “K.O. Beast”
* Legend of Duo
* Makyō Gaiden Le Deus, localized as “Ladius” (OVA)
* Nanako Kaitai Shinsho, localized as “Amazing Nurse Nanako” (OVA)
* NG Knight Ramune & 40
* Mahoraba: Heartful Days
* Venus Versus Virus
* Weiß Kreuz (OVA)
Commentary: Upon reading what Mr. Negishi has done other than this iteration of Burn Up! I can easily say that his collective filmography is a mixed bag. I really liked Divergence Eve and Nanako Kaitai Shinsho, but Maburaho and Ai Tenchi Muyō are among some of the worst series that I’ve ever seen. With this series particularly, some of his best visual staples are employed, like his psychedelic, color-wash overlay that he’s known for using during dramatic, action scenes. He also has perfected what I like to refer to as the “anguished moe face,” he has similar shots of Misaki from Divergence Eve; Negishi usually angles the perspective to where the character looks doleful from the viewpoint of a profile shot.
John Ledford (executive producer), ADV dubs that he produced:
Good Dub: ✅
Bad Dub: ❌
The series that I haven’t seen in English are left blank.
* Ah! My Goddess: Sorezore no Tsubasa, localized as “Ah! My Goddess: Flights of Fancy” ❌
* Abashiri Ikka, localized as “The Abashiri Family”
* AD Police
* Ai Tenshi Densetsu Wedding Peach DX
* Air (series) ❌
* Air Gear ❌
* Akame ga Kill ✅
* AKB0048, and AKB0048: Next Stage
* Akihabara Dennō Gumi, localized as “Cyberteam in Akihabara”
* Angel Beats!
* Aozora Shōjotai, localized as “801 T.T.S. Airbats”
* Appleseed (movie) ❌
* Appleseed Alpha
* Aquarion Age: Sign for Evolution
* Arc the Lad
* Arcana Famiglia (series)
* Area 88, and Area 88 (TV) ✅
* Aura: Maryūinkōga Saigo no Tatakai, localized as “Aura: Koga Maryuin’s Last War”
* Azumanga Daiō ✅
* Bakumatsu Kikansetsu Irohanihoheto (series), localized as “Intrigue in the Bakumatsu: Irohanihoheto”
* Bannō Bunka Nekomusume, localized as “All Purpose Cultural Cat Girl Nuku Nuku”
* Black Bullet
* Blue Drop: Tenshitachi no Gikyoku
* Blue Seed, and Blue Seed 2
* Bōnen no Zamudo, localized as “Xam’d: Lost Memories”
* Break Blade (series)
* Bubblegum Crisis 2040 ❌
* Buki yo Saraba, localized as “A Farewell to Arms”
* Burn Up! (series) ✅
* Byōsoku Go Senchimētoru, localized as “5 Centimeters per Second” ✅
* Can Can Bunny Extra
* Casshern: Robot Hunter ❌
* Chameleon (OVA)
* Chrno Crusade ❌
* Chūnibyō demo Koi ga Shitai! (series), localized as “Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions”
* City Hunter (series)
* Clannad (series) ❌
* Colorful ❌
* Comic Party (series) ✅
* Compiler (series)
* Cosplay Complex ❌
* Coyote Ragtime Show
* Crying Freeman
* Devil May Cry (series)
* Diabolik Lovers
* DRAMAtical Murder
* ef (series)
* Eiyū Densetsu: Sora no Kiseki, localized as “Legend of the Heroes: Trails in the Sky”
* Elfen Lied ❌
* Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya (series)
* Final Fantasy: Unlimited ❌
* Gachaman Crowds
* Gekkan Shōjo Nozaki-kun, localized as “Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun”
* Genei Tōshi Bastof Lemon
* Ginga Kikōtai Majestic Prince
* Gintama Movie 1: Shinyaku Benizakura
* Girls & Panzer
* Gokujō Seitokai
* Gokukoku no Brynhildr ❌
* Golgo 13 (TV) ❌
* Guin Saga
* Gunnm, localized as “Battle Angel Alita” ✅
* Hakkenden: Tōhō Hakken Ibun
* Hakuōki (series)
* Halo Legends
* Hamatora: The Animation
* Hi no Yōjin
* Highschool of the Dead (series) ❌
* Hiiro no Kakera (series), localized as “Scarlet Fragment”
* Hitsugi no Chaika
* Hokuto no Ken: Raoh Gaiden Ten no Haoh ✅
* Hoshi wo Ou Kodomo, localized as “Children Who Chase Lost Voices”
* Hotaru no Haka, localized as “Grave of the Fireflies” ❌
* Hyakka Ryōran
* I: Wish You Were Here
* Ichiban Ushiro no Daimaō
* Ikoku Meiro no Croisée: The Animation
* Innocent Venus ✅
* Inu to Hasami wa Tsukaiyō
* Inu x Boku SS
* IS: Infinite Stratos (series)
* Jigen Sengoku Shi: Kuro no Shishi Jinnai-hen, localized as “Black Lion” ❌
* K-On! Movie
* Kagaku Ninja-tai Gatchaman
* Kaibutsu Ōjo, localized as “Princess Resurrection”
* Kaichō wa Maid-sama! ❌
* Kami Nomi zo Shiru Sekai (series), localized as “The World God Only Knows”
* Kami-sama Dolls
* Kami-sama no Memo-chō, localized as “Heaven’s Memo Pad” ❌
* Kanon (2006)
* Kidō Tenshi Angelic Layer ❌
* Kill Me Baby
* Kiseijū: Sei no Kakuritsu
* Kokoro Connect
* Kono Danshi, Ningyo Hiroimashita (series)
* Kono Naka ni Hitori, Imōto ga Iru!, localized as “My Little Sister Is Among Them!”
* Kotetsu no Daibōken
* Kotonoha no Niwa
* Kyōkai no Kanata
* Kyōkaisenjō no Horizon
* Le Chevalier D’Eon ✅
* Little Busters!
* Mahō Sensō
* Maji de Watashi ni Koi Shinasai!
* Mardock Scramble (series) ❌
* Maria†Holic (series) ❌
* Mawaru Penguindrum ✅
* Mayo Chiki!
* Medaka Box (series)
* Mondaiji-tachi ga Isekai kara Kuru Sō Desu yo?
* Mōretsu Pirates
* Muv-Luv Alternative: Total Eclipse
* Nazo no Kanojo X
* Neon Genesis Evangelion ✅
* No Game No Life ✅
* No. 6 ❌
* Nobunaga the Fool
* Nyan Koi!
* Oda Nobuna no Yabō
* Outbreak Company
* Persona 4: The Animation
* Phi Brain (series)
* Queen’s Blade: Rebellion
* Queen’s Blade: Utsukushi Tōshi-tachi
* Ra/Radio Noise*Planet
* Red Garden (series) ❌
* Rozen Maiden: Ouvertüre
* Rurōni Kenshin: Meiji Kenkaku Roman-tan—Shin Kyoto-hen ❌
* Saiyūki Gaiden ❌
* Sakamichi no Apollon
* Sakigake!! Cromartie Kōkō ✅
* Seisenshi Dunbine
* Sekaikei Sekai Ron
* Sengoku Otome: Momoiro Paradox
* Senkō no Night Raid
* Shin Angyo Onshi
* Shin Hokuto no Ken
* Shining Hearts: Shiawase no Pan ❌
* Shinsekai Yori ❌
* Short Peace Opening
* Sidonia no Kishi ❌
* SoniAni: Super Sonico The Animation
* Special A
* Tamako Market
* Tasogare Otome x Amnesia
* Tataku Shisho: The Book of Bantorra
* Tears to Tiara
* Towa no Quon (series)
* UN-GO ❌
* Vampire Hunter D ✅
* Venus Versus Virus ❌
* Watashi ga Motenai no wa Dō Kangaetemo Omaera ga Warui!, localized as “No Matter How I Look at It, It’s You Guys’ Fault I’m Not Popular!” ❌
* Yumekui Merry ❌
* Yūgo: Kōshōnin
* Yūwaku Countdown
* Zettai Bōei Leviathan
Commentary: Since W is less off-the-wall funny, there’s less creativity with the ADV script. Still, a really tight rendering of the original material though!
Yūji Ikeda (animation director, character design)
* Arslan Senki (art director)
* Please Save My Earth (art director)
* Cardcaptor Sakura Movie 2: Fūin Sealed Card (art director)
* CLAMP School Detectives (art director)
* Di Gi Charat (art director)
* Dragon Ball (character design)
* Dragon Ball Z (character design)
* Fushigi Yûgi (art director)
* Gensōmaden Saiyūki (art director)
* Gosenzo-sama Banbanzai! (art director)
* Great Teacher Onizuka (art director)
* Kōtetsu Tenshi Kurumi 2 (chief animation director, character design)
* Yū Yū Hakusho (art director)
Commentary: Mr. Ikeda has very crisp, memorable designs. I wasn’t sure if I was particularly going to like the style in this series, because the protagonist Rio, has the big-hair syndrome that is prevalent in a lot of other series. But, coupled with the animation style and the angling of the shots, the designs are very charming and expressive.
Toshifumi Takizaki (script)
* Big Wars (director)
* Crusher Joe OVA (director)
* Cyborg 009 (episode director)
* Densetsu Kyojin Ideon (episode director)
* Dirty Pair (director)
* Dirty Pair: Flight 005 Conspiracy (director)
* Samurai 7 (director)
* Seisenshi Dunbine OVA (director)
Commentary: Mr. Takizaki is a very big name in the industry, mainly known as working on storyboards for really famous mecha series, like Sōkō Kihei Votoms and Kidō Senshi Zēta Gundam. The writing and the storyboarding in this series is very clean and succinct, it goes to show that having a veteran in the industry on a project can bring a series to life.
Mitsuyo Suenaga (script)
* Cobra: The Animation (script)
* Cross Game (script)
* Patalliro (script)
Commentary: From the series I’ve watched, that he’s had involvement with, Cobra: The Animation and Paralliro both have snappy comedic timing and a certain quirkiness in their scripts. Burn Up! Excess conveys that same kind of snarky humor.
I watched Burn Up! Excess with the ADV dub, so I will list the Japanese seiyū, but comments will be on the performances of the English voice actors. An interesting tidbit about this particular series is that it also has an Italian and Spanish dub!
Yuka Imai as Rio Kinezono, notable roles:
* Scarlet Ohara, Wedding Peach
* Renamon, Digimon Tamers
* Marie Ange, Doki Doki PreCure
* Yū Hayakawa, Final Fantasy: Unlimited
* Eiko Randō, Geobreeders 2
* Misaki Matsuya, Excel Saga
* Nabuca, Now and Then, Here and There
* Yuki, Ojamajo Doremi
* Futaba Āsu, Puni Puni ☆ Poemii
* Otaru Mamiya, Saber Marionette J
* Junior Virey, Saber Marionette R
* Eden Orion, Saint Seiya Omega
* Jinto Linn, Seikai no Monshō
* Wakaba Shinohara, Shōjo Kakumei Utena
* Tomochika Shibuya, Uta no☆Prince-sama♪
Amanda Winn Lee as Rio Kinezono, notable roles:
* Mimiru, .hack//SIGN
* Momiji Fujimiya, Blue Seed
* Reimi, Burn Up!
* Pandy, Dead Leaves
* Mika Seido, Geneshaft
* Gally, Battle Angel Alita
* Rally Vincent, Gunsmith Cats
* Rei Ayanami, Neon Genesis Evangelion
* Yukiko Amagi, Persona 4: The Animation
* Titaniva Mu Koshigaya, Plastic Little
* Nancy Makuhari, R.O.D: Read or Die
* Saki Asamiya, Sukeban Deka
Commentary: Amanda Winn Lee has always been a favorite voice actor of mine. She always gives a clear, heartfelt performance and her role in Burn Up! Excess is no different. Rio is a lazy, good-for-nothing, self-serving jerk—who’s likable, despite her insufferable demeanor. Watching her character interact with people and the world is like watching an episode of Seinfeld. Ms. Lee makes the character true to her vices, but immensely likable and funny, at the same time. Great performance!
Maya Okamoto as Maya Jingu, notable roles:
* Megumi Amano, Chōjin Densetsu Urotsukidōji
* Lambda Nom, Haja Taisei Dangaiō
* Haruka Minato, Kidō Senkan Nadesico
* Fanna, Armed Dragon Fantasy Villgust
* Liza Hoyly, Macross Dynamite 7
* Emma Sheen, Kidō Senshi Zēta Gundam
* Orihime Soletta, Sakura Taisen
* Yuki Saiko, Silent Möbius
Lani Minella as Maya Jingu, notable roles:
* Dolce Saito, Geneshaft
* Rouge the Bat, Sonic the Hedgehog
Commentary: Ms. Minella is very good at making Maya have a fractious, tougher than nails, tomboyish demeanor with a slightly Southern tinge to it. I didn’t understand the casting choice completely, until Episode 4: Gokudō Father, where it reveals that Maya is a country yokel, whose father heads a biker gang. Lani Minella did a good job of expressing the subtle inflections of the character’s voice. Great job!
Sakura Tange as Lilica Ebett, notable roles:
* Sakura Kinamoto, Cardcaptor Sakura
* Jack the Ripper (Assassin), Fate/Apocrypha
* Nero Claudius (Saber), Fate/Extra: Last Encore
* Mill Varna, Maze☆Bakunetsu Jikū
Kimberly Yates as Lilica Ebett, notable roles:
* Yuka, Burn Up!
* Leena, Dirty Pair Flash
* May Hopkins, Gunsmith Cats
* Azusa Kanzaki, Mamono Hunter Yōko
* Yomiko Readman, R.O.D: Read or Die
* May Jessica, Sol Bianca
Commentary: I was less impressed with Ms. Yate’s performance than some of the others. Her voice just sounded like a Monica Rial-esque, nasally high-pitched character impression. I typically am not a fan of the simplicity used to voice feminine, or young-sounding, characters in English dubs. Though, Rial did a really good job voicing Lumière in Kiddy Grade.
Yuri Amano as Nanvel Candlestick, notable roles:
* Berthier and CereCere, Sailor Moon
* Mother Togashi, Chūnibyō demo Koi ga Shitai!
* Kallen’s Mother, Code Geass
* Kawai Kawai, Iczer-Girl Iczelion
* Aki Kokonoe (Rin’s Mother), Kodomo no Jikan
* Alcyone, Magic Knight Rayearth
* Rain Mikamura, Mobile Fighter G Gundam
* Yuriko Star, Musekinin Kanchō Tylor
* Sayo, Mushishi
* Lashara Moon, Photon
* Lorelei, Saber Marionette J
* Kiyone Makibi, Tenchi Muyō!
* Makiko Nagi, Tenjō Tenge
* Asaka Nakamura, Ushio to Tora
* Moemi Hayakawa, Video Girl Ai
* Keiko Yukimura, Yū Yū Hakusho
Carol Amerson as Nanvel Candlestick, notable roles:
* Sayoko Mano, Devil Hunter Yohko
* Hikari Horaki, Neon Genesis Evangelion
* Nakoruru, Samurai Showdown
Commentary: I prefer Nanvel being voiced by Keith Allison in Burn Up! Excess, but that may be because I’m a huge fan of Ms. Allison as Misato Katsuragi in Neon Genesis Evangelion. Ms. Amerson being cast as such a sassy, cute science nerd is kind of plain, when you compare the two. Especially, with Allison jubilant performance commanding the attention of viewers in Excess.
Mami Kingetsu as Maki Kawasaki , notable roles:
* Nagisa Shiozaki, Yume de Aetara
Tiffany Grant as Maki Kawasaki, notable roles:
* Suzume Sakurajosui, Akihabara Dennō Gumi
* Moffle, Amagi Brilliant Park and Full Metal Panic? Fumoffu
* Kaori Azumanga Daiō
* Chocolate Misu, Bakuretsu Hunters
* Koume Sawaguchi, Blue Seed
* Maki, Burn Up!
* Stella Harvenheit, Chrno Crusade
* Daichi Sawaguchi and Densuke, Dennō Coil
* Kanato Sakamaki, Diabolik Lovers
* Asuka Langley Sōryū, Neon Genesis Evangelion
* Sella, Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya
* Mai Tokudaiji, Ginga Ojōsama Densetsu Yuna (Galaxy Fräulein Yuna)
* Laura Bodewig, IS: Infinite Stratos
* Nōmi Kudoryafuka, Little Busters!
* Kuriko Kazetsubaki, Maburaho
* Rika Anju, Magikano
* Christiane Friedrich, Majikoi!
* Susumu Tsukumo, Wandaba Style
* Ellyse Aldomordish, Plastic Little
* Haruka, Sister Princess
* Morgan, Tears to Tiara
Commentary: I enjoy Tiffany Grant as Maki Kawasaki, more than Carol Amerson voicing her in Burn Up! Excess. Whenever Maki would say anything sarcastic or satirical in Carol Amerson’s rendition, it would just sound like a woeful teacher scolding a child, while Ms. Grant’s version comes off as lively and playful. I am biased though, because I grew up with the ADV dub of Neon Genesis Evangelion.
* Emi Shinohara as Ruby, notable roles:
* Makoto Kino, Sailor Moon
* Mokuren, Please Save My Earth
* Kaho Mizuki, Cardcaptor Sakura
* Ophelia, Claymore
* Mari Īmura, Hajime no Ippo
* Michiru Satomi, IGPX: Immortal Grand Prix
* Kagero, Ninja Scroll
* Migiri Yasuri, Katanagatari
* Sanae Araki, Kaze no Youjinbō
* Kekkō Kamen, Kekkō Kamen
* Yōko Mizuno, Maria-sama ga Miteru
* Kushina Uzumaki, Naruto
* Biko Daitokuji, Project A-ko
* Angel Rosewater, The Big O
* Natsuhi Ushiromoiya, Umineko no Naku Koro ni
* Charlotte Elbourne, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust
* Arashi Kishu, X/1999
Paula Tiso as Ruby, notable roles:
* Ouka, .hack/Legend of the Twilight Bracelet
Commentary: I have the same opinion of Ms. Tiso’s role as Ruby, as I did when I watched .hack/Legend of the Twilight Bracelet. She sounds too old for her role. Paula Tiso is typically cast as sexy character, but the roles sound very low energy, rather than vivacious and heartfelt.
Conclusively, Burn Up! W is recommended for fans that miss good ‘ol hard-hitting, cyberpunk OVAs! I would give a more concrete recommendation if you’re a fan of Divergence Eve, Neon Genesis Evangelion, or My Dear Marie; there’s an entire episode full of Evangelion references: Episode 2! W fulfills the obscure, robot-shaped hole that has been left by the lack of proper alternatives in the genre. Not to mention, impressively adhering to the “badass girls fighting battles and looking cute” niche! Definitely give this one a try, if you haven’t already! I give Burn Up! W a 7/10!
Other Burn Up! Rankings:
Burn Up! ★★☆☆☆
Burn Up! Excess ★★★☆☆
Burn Up! Scramble ★☆☆☆☆
48: Sol Bianca: Taiyou no Fune
English: Sol Bianca: The Legacy
Japanese: 太陽の船 ソルビアンカ
MAL Score: 6.36
Thousands of years into the future, mankind has colonized other planets across the galaxy and completely forgotten about Earth. On one part of the galaxy, the female space pirates and their colossal starship Sol Bianca get a surprise when a young girl named Mayo stows away on board the ship. The crew then embarks on a journey to Earth to find the whereabouts of Mayo’s parents and discover the secrets of the lost planet.
There’s a pretty engaging opening featuring one of the crew of the Sol Bianca ship reminiscing about her past, with a rising crescendo of emotion and music, fully showcasing how this franchise can rise above what it began life as; an overlooked OVA with tiny potential emanating from it.
There is something mysterious and romantic about the future in this show, even though it’s not innovative, there’s just a vibe about it that differentiates it from other sci-fi set capers. It feels a bit like Aria, with its picturesque moonlit Mediterranean-like landscapes and calm music. Ok, so it’s occasionally broken by massive destruction caused by a bunch of pesky space pirates, but you get the idea.
Sol Bianca’s vibe is thanks to an amalgamation of music, art and of course story. The Sol Bianca is a mysterious ship that is more an abode with weaponry attached. A sanctuary with its fountains and fauna. A Garden of Eden if you will. Oh, that’s why the Genesis quote was chucked in our faces!
The ship has one of the best graphical user interfaces in anime, a real creative and quirky tree-of-life type animation with lovely font and imagery. Let’s not forget its actual features, the best of which you see in the first and last episode which is so monumentally bizarre and over the top, garnering shocked bystanders as witnesses to its destructive power, you can’t help but smile at the enormity of it.
Set after the Frontier Age when humanity was exploring the stars with wide-eyed passion, the story’s planetary citizens are not so wide-eyed anymore. The anime is classed as a remake, though it’s more a prequel really as we join the gang just before the youngest, Mayo, becomes a member.
The gang’s adventures begin on Neo-Venez…uh, a lovely looking planet, searching for April’s stolen heirloom, a golden gun. Unfortunately there’s no cameo from Christopher Lee, but we do get a pale guy with a ponytail who shows more menace in his first five minutes than any bad guy in the entirety of the previous released OVA. Unfortunately he’s pretty one-note and boring; wasting every second he’s on screen. This is something the franchise needs to sort out badly: getting good villains.
The character art is not so attractive this time unfortunately, which may as well be fatal considering we’re talking about a show revolving around an all-female pirate crew of 5. This is disappointing coming from Naoyuki Onda who has a prolific animeography behind him. One of the members of our lovable pirate crew looks like a man she’s so butch! You get used to it by the end though, and Feb in particular still looks classy.
Things start well with the first episode; dip into forgettable shenanigans with episodes 2 and 3, that do at least provide hints of development for some characters, even if the plots aren’t that good. Things pick up again at episode 4 and onwards as the crew near the mythical Earth in search of Mayo’s parents and ultimately an explosive climax that has absolutely nothing to do with pirating. How many shows are out there actually about pirates doing genuinely piratey things anyway?
The deliciously tanned character, Feb, who appeared to be a leader of sorts in the original OVA (simply because she was the eldest, not through any leadership qualities) remains mostly useless in this one too, although does get some development because the ‘looks like her drink was spiked’ appearance since the original OVA is vindicated when we realise she’s really perpetually drinking, and at one point a potential rapist even remarks "your face clearly says that you want to get laid!" You have to wonder if she’s a walking poster child against date rape drugs. Other than that though, the writer does decent things with her character, causing a rift in the group and you know when a rift occurs, we get juicy drama.
However incoherent it is. The OVA’s main weakness isn’t so much the character art, because the other art and animation make up for that, but the plot holes and lazy writing in general are the biggest problems. Its not enough to ruin the show, but just continues that unsatisfied feeling the first OVA left you with. We have a great concept here, the franchise can be so much more with more effort and care.
The music is totally unlike the previous OVA, it’s a mix of traditional orchestral score, pop, rock, electronica, latin, drum and bass, and whatever else you want to throw into the sink.
Sol Bianca: The Legacy is directed and edited very well, its subtleties will pass by many, but a seasoned movie/anime watcher should hopefully appreciate how this OVA wasn’t just churned out without thought, but was overseen by a few creative-minded people who at least put 100% into their work, no matter what budget, writing or other constraints were working against them.
There are memorable scenes in this OVA, maybe its another stepping stone for the Sol Bianca franchise to blossom and become a cult hit or even attain mainstream success in the future with further adventures. Thats up to you and whether you’re willing to give 5 female pirates from the future a shot.
This was packaged as a prequel to the 1990 Sol Bianca OVAs, which I enjoyed greatly. Sadly, this show did not live up to the bar set by its predecessor, and generally left me with a sour taste in my mouth.
The storyline was almost entirely a result of the poor character choices. Unlike the first installment where everyone seems to have solid reasons for doing what they do, this series features a crew of women entirely under the spell of their own emotional instability. The entire series is just one long Men Writing Women trope, and the plotline is just a reflection of that.
The characters were just horrible interpretations of the strong crew which I’d grown attached to through the first series. Each character was boiled down to cliches and dehumanized. Most of the character interactions of the crew can be boiled down to “be a horrible human because that’s just how women are”, “be wallpaper”, or “me chunk not understand human emotion”.
The art and sound were pretty bad. The show didn’t have the juicy 90’s hand-drawn artwork carrying it anymore and their character models only got worse. There were some decently executed concepts and moments which is why it gets the rating it does from me, but overall it just falls flat by not capitalizing on the ground it has, and instead spending time making our beloved crew into capricious drunks and ridiculous brats.
I would recommend anyone skip this unless they know something I don’t, or maybe just want a tutorial in how not to revive your old franchise.
47: Gall Force 3: Stardust War
Japanese: ガルフォース3 スターダスト ウォー
MAL Score: 6.37
The girls are saved … by none other than Catty Nebulart herself! Now, the race is on as Catty struggles to complete her crowning achievement: a huge machine that will bring life to a lifeless world!
As for the story it shows some more of what the war is really about and is a bit interesting in some ways but can be something what u heard before so yeah…. its ok
46: Black Magic M-66
MAL Score: 6.38
When Sybel, a freelance reporter, discovers a military plane crash, she is thrilled by the prospect of getting her hands on the latest inside scoop. However, she is unaware that the plane was carrying two top-secret prototype android assassins who will stop at nothing to destroy their target. As the military frantically tries to clean up its mess, Sybel races against time to find and protect the robots’ targeted victim—all while documenting the military’s misconduct—before it is too late.
The animation is also great and gets more lively as the OVA goes on. The animation isn’t the best looking though as when there is a lot of motion, the shading will tend to be taken out to save on resources. That doesn’t make what’s here bad, but it doesn’t make what’s here fantastic either. Even so, there are some fantastic scenes in this anime that are done in a relatively creative manner. I found the art style nice and it treated everything in a proper way to make it all a bit believable for an anime thriller. The machines move and act like machines, and they’re given a bit of an unpredictable functionality that makes them a tad eerie. There are also many moments where multiple people will move about on screen, along with vehicles and ships. The designing of the futuristic setting is also well handled, while not too original. What I found most interesting was that a number of the futuristic flying vehicles still had propellers and wings that gave the ships a moderately unique and cool look.
The direction and the sound do well to keeping the atmosphere feeling deadly with some good work on sound effects. To the music, there’s a lot of fast and loud electronic beats that should be expected from an 80’s thriller. I watched this OVA in english dubs, and I can report that they were better than average for the most part. However, while most actors did well, there are two stand-out bad actors that sadly have a somewhat concurrent place in the run-time. I was able to forgive that though as the other actors were doing a fine job.
The story is, again, average to what one would expect from an 80’s thriller. However, the characters that occupy the story aren’t bad in their interaction. There are plenty of side characters that I found myself fairly interested in, but sadly more so than the main character for much of the time. The main character has basically zero back-story to her and basically no personality. She serves as the doer and is kinda like a Ripley character with a camera. If it was just her starting out she may have been more interesting at the beginning, but she was stuck with a pointless side-character for some time whose contribution to the enjoyment was in the light negative – feeling like a talking brief-case she had to carry about with her. That character doesn’t have much screen-time in reality, but so does the main character in a way as she has a close amount of time compared to some side characters. Overall, the characters serve their purposes and act reasonably for the most part, but are in no way developed or all too interesting on their own. When considering the situation around them though, there is still some interest to be had.
Black Magic M-66 is a cool thriller for anime that is one that’s also actually able to pull it off well. Many thriller anime focus on gore as the eerie part, but that doesn’t connect much of the time (Elfen Lied, Another, etc.). What they usually forget to do is keep the atmosphere done well and have the monster act mysteriously. It couldn’t be said that the machines in this OVA act “mysteriously” though the whole time, but more so in the first half. The second half is where the relation to “Terminator” becomes more apparent than that of “Predator”, and also the way in which the robot acts changes in a slightly plot-convincing way. Even so, there is a light bit of reasonability to the sudden change in the robot’s abilities and even if there wasn’t, it isn’t really necessary to take the story too seriously in that aspect. Although, some situations do arise where you think the robot has won if it acts like it was before, but it instead acts much like a Frankenstein monster of older black and white movies. Still entertaining, and surprisingly still a bit thrilling in certain moments. Black Magic M-66 is an old anime thriller that those who want something a little different from the usual should check out.
Released in the year 1987, Black Magic M-66 as a whole is somewhat… well, FRUSTRATINGLY mundane. Of course, it was directed in part by Masamune Shirow, and he did the Appleseed, which was awesome, (maybe I’ll review that one) so I don’t understand how M-66 came out as a bad anime. Well, it IS of the typical type of anime ova– a cyberpunk, action-based free-for-all that delivers a lot of blood and gore and horrible plot structure with hit and miss characters, yet, these ovas usually contain decent animation and value that aspect over all things, despite their crappy music and a butt load of major issues with the ova itself. So, now I wish to address those issues.
The story begins by showing a fighter plane flying through a storm. The next thing you know, this plane that was introduced only ten seconds ago goes down and explodes into a billowing ball of fire, crashing into the trees, and (finally) hits the ground hard. The title screen is shown, then, a naked girl appears on screen and walks out her house unclothed….
…It only took one minute for this ova to throw me for a loop. I know that barely anything happened yet, but the things that did happen are complete B.S. I feel that there are no aims to ovas like this, because all they do is show of horrendous plots and titillate nude women (no pun intended) and fanservice for the majority of the show.
Moving on, there seems to be more going on in this ova than what seems to be, but actually, that’s the main problem with this one. There’s too much crap thrown into the beginning of the anime and as a result, it distracts from the important elements of the plot and ruins the entertainment factor. All in order, there’s the spectacle of an explosion in the first 30 seconds of the anime, the title screen is dropped, a naked girl is immediately thrown into the focus of the camera and all she does is scribble on some film containers and go streaking. Next, some government people are in the forest where the plane from earlier crashed and we learn where the M-66 robots come into play. But after a brief introduction and explanation of the components of these robots, they story shifts and continues to shift between the main characters Sybil and Leakey, then onto the military grunts, then to a girl with barely any clothes on (seems to be a recurring theme in this anime), then to a weird professor, then all of a sudden the military is back in the forest, and apparently Sybil is too, and gets captured. Then a bear is shown dead with its blood and ribs pouring out, and the M-66 robots begin to do random things and kill anybody they see in the forest, and then we jump-cut back to the apprehended Sybil about to be killed before FINALLY the heart of the story takes place and the robots start to wipe out the military forces. Afterwards, the characters find out that the aim of these combat robots is to kill the professor’s granddaughter, named Ferris, shown briefly in a bra and panties moments ago. And all that happens in roughly 15 minutes.
Now, I’ll admit that there was a pretty solid twist that starts off the action, but I only have one small complaint. I have but one, tiny, miniscule problem with this…
Everything I explained previously about the story of M-66 is arbitrary.
I didn’t spoil the anime nor did I ever hint of a climax. I’ve only BEGUN to explain the opening of this anime. That is absurd!! This is what ruins anime ovas, a bunch of useless, unimportant garbage thrown into opening scenes and information and actions that are irrelevant to the main plot! M-66 might hold the trophy for the worst opening ever in an anime because there are so many unnecessary things thrown into it. Ovas are only so long, too, so you’d think that more time would be spent on developing a decent story, but M-66 goes off the deep end and flounders its writing. Between those first 15 minutes, there are so many things introduced, so many random events happening, and so little time for any narration or explanation that the story is incomprehensible. The frequent scene switching and jump cuts screw the flow of the story over even more. The only worthwhile part to this is watching the soldier at about 14 minutes and 52 seconds into the anime being turned into visceral. Yeah, keep rewinding that over and over. It’s better than sitting through the rest of M-66. M-66’s opening story is very flawed; it’s like watching Genocyber all over again…
Buuuuuuut Genocyber was 100% bad… and I have to say that… the latter half of this anime is quite decent. I’m actually impressed. They didn’t screw around when the better scenes came along. There are many points that drive home the suspense and those are periods while watching that I really hoped that Sybil would make it out to the end alive with the girl Ferris, who ends up being a target of the killer robots. The drama works with many of the more intense action scenes and I’m sure that you would agree that everything falls into place well in some moments of this half of the ova.
Surprisingly, there are actually very few “action” scenes in this ova that aren’t just a robot killing a bunch of military grunts. However, the scenes that exist are worthwhile and very well done, despite this being just one of those ovas that are just an excuse to show copious amounts of blood onscreen. It doesn’t hinder the experience much this time around, and by the time Sybil has to keep Ferris safe from the renegade combat robots, the “excuse” is justified: these robots are going to tear up anything and everything that stands in their way in order to complete their goal. However, the resolution to the story is unsatisfying, and does NOT justify what I went through watching the beginning of the story, which was a lot of bewilderment and confusion.
Moving on to the characters, I think they suck. Sybil is the only interesting one, but only because she’s a bit comedic and if I ignore the moment where I see her nude in the first 60 seconds of the anime, I dare say she’s kinda cute. The professor who created the M-66 robots is too dumb to live; In fact, he’s probably even worse than the people in the story who go up to the super-powered killer robots and fight them out of free volition. Why do I think so? He let these killer robots get close to his only granddaughter, and one of them became familiar with her and went apeshit, so naturally it wants her dead. The plot of M-66 is all the professor’s fault. Leakey is seemingly Sybil’s grunt worker. He’s uninteresting. Ferris is the professor’s granddaughter and she’s very annoying, and I don’t like her. And there’s a Major of the military and some other military guys who help out or go against Sybil, but the thing is that this story spends zero time on character development. Although, for Sybil’s character development, it’s all decked out for fanservice. There are plenty of one-shot characters as well, who usually die right after they are introduced since they take on the M-66 robot bullheadedly. The plot simply leaves characters dead and just goes right on into the action. I guess getting to the point is not a bad thing for an anime and in an ova, there’s hardly any time to pull out anything good like what FMA does with its characters. Unfortunately, this anime fast-forwards to the action at a bad place. This anime should’ve gotten to the point right after the title screen and THEN explained it’s characters if need be, instead of crapping all over its introduction and skipping the character development so that they can focus on the action.
Looking at the sound of this ova, the acting is fair. The dub is certainly far from fair, but it’s not as atrocious as Lily C.A.T. or Violence Jack. It’s tolerable, and if subtitles bother you as much as they bother me, try the dub. Otherwise, stick to the original Japanese audio and dialogue. The closing theme is actually a wonderful song by Kitahara Yuki. If a song from an anime makes me feel like searching for it in Google, I think it is pretty good by default. For me, it’s a memorable song, but the rest of the score is disappointing. Most times, the music is ignorable, because the music doesn’t stand out much, but other times (the final scene on the rooftop for example) the music does not suit the mood of the situation. Outside of that, most of the score is unimpressive.
M-66 looks visually unimpressive as well and not just because it’s an 80’s ova. Lily C.A.T. is garbage, but it had fluid animation scenes and stunning (and gory) designs of its monsters. Comparing M-66 to Lily C.A.T., the animation seems to be done on the cheap for most of the ova and the most important parts have an art style that is just like standard animation for an 80’s anime. The blood from the dead people and animals looks more of a magenta color than bright red. The robots are interesting characters on their own, but look like nothing more than the dolls you see in the windows of clothing stores with wigs on them. The animation isn’t flawed, but it fails to impress.
For the most part, every aspect of Black Magic M-66 is generic. The outstanding aspects are usually the worst parts. If you didn’t catch everything I explained or need a bit more clarification as to why this anime ova is a piece of crap, in my opinion, I’ll gladly clarify on my points, which is something M-66 never does once.
Story: (3) Quite appalling. There is no consistency for much of the beginning of the anime, with random events occurring left and right, and the way the story introduces the combat robots only confuses me more. This story doesn’t pull itself together until 30 minutes have passed. It’s a 45-minute ova…
Art: (5) Not good, and not up to par, even for an 80’s anime ova. Even though this was released prior to Lily C.A.T., that’s not an excuse.
Sound: (5) It’s plain and mediocre. Can’t say much about it. I do find some solace in the theme by Kitahara-san.
Characters (2): This ova has a severe lack of character development overall. They all felt very loose, at least the main characters did. Other characters don’t even last that long before they meet their doom. I don’t consider the androids characters either.
Enjoyment: (4): I only enjoyed three things about this ova: the ending theme, Sybil’s humor, and again, minute 14:52. The guy just takes a hit for the team. That scene will stay in my head for a long time to come.
OVERALL: I bless Black Magic M-66 with a 4.
Between the surprisingly good action and chase scenes, horrible characters, and a mediocre score, I could’ve just passed off this as an average ova series and considered the flaws mentioned very miniscule actually. But the thing that destroys the entire flow of the ova and the enjoyment factor is the horrible beginning. I don’t need to say much else because you know how I feel about it. I don’t like it. It’s as if Shirow wasn’t thinking when he directed this. Outside of the suspense, there is not one quality aspect to the rest of the story since the ending is sub-par and most of the plot is pathetic, with its crappy beginning and incessant portrayal of men being turned into ludicrous gibs by the robots. It wears on your patience FAST! It’s not enjoyable in the least; it’s BELOW AVERAGE! The flow of the story of this anime is bad, cased closed!
Once again, this is the part of my review where all the exaggeration ends and the seriousness begins. I don’t think I can speak for people from the 1980’s when I say that this story is flawed. It was a different time back then, and most ovas have come a long way in huge strides. But the point of this review is to review the anime ova and see if I could recommend this to people out there, not to focus on reviewing other periods of time or other people’s tastes. However, when it comes down to me labeling M-66 as “recommendable,” I don’t think that I will do that either…
This is a really nice anime,its fast pace and comes off as a confincing sct-fi action anime.the animation is quite good,i loved the colours used and the drawing looked quite realistic.overall nothing spectacular but still a good anime.
45: Mahou Shoujo Pretty Sammy
English: Magical Girl Pretty Sammy
MAL Score: 6.38
Sasami’s always been kind of neat… but now she’s been imbibed with a healthy dose of magic (which she plans to use to right the things wrong with the Earth, and, of course, help keep her brother Tenchi out of trouble). Naturally, there’s going to be trouble: this time, it’s the mysterious Pixy Misa… and Ryoko going at it against Ayeka (as usual) isn’t making things any easier for her!
Pretty Sammy… In a few words: This is one hell of a weird anime to branch off of the original Tenchi Muyo anime o_O
Story: Is not that good yet it’s not that bad. We meet along with 4th grader Sasami who is just your regular elementary school student who randomly gets powers because a certain goddess was either bored or she needed help for one thing or another (OMG… I can’t believe I forgot already x.x). Oh well. This is mostly a story about the trials that Pretty Sammy has to go through to keep the world safe from the villians. Nothing much to that.
Art: Is pretty good. If you’re used to the usual art of the Tenchi Muyo universe, then this is pretty much good. Everyone and everything look just as they should.
Sound: They have most of the music from the OVA series which is a plus for me (being the avid Tenchi fan that I am).
Character: OMG…. You have no clue as to how many times I was like "EW!! 4th GRADER… STOP THAT!" XD! It wasn’t like… dirty in a sense… It was just a few of the things that the villains and everyone around that thing where saying to Sammy where like, "COME ON!" XD! But a whole bunch of those things were pretty hilariously stupid.
Enjoyment: As said above: this series is hilariously stupid. I enjoyed it a lot (although, it scared the crap out of my cousin and it has forever tainted the way she sees Sasami ^^; ). The old gang is still here… Although it’s kinda weird seeing how Mihoshi and Kiyone may have switched places (mind-wise) and how Ayeka and Sasami’s mom have a tendency to be crying one minute and laughing their heads off in a psychotic episode thanks to that crying O_o;
Overall, this series wasn’t either bad nor good. It was just something that I had been DYING to watch after I had completed watching the OVA and Universe (+movies). It was nice to hear everyone’s voices again and to watch something of the series I love so much (that was new to me) after so many years.
Sounds random, but if done right it works really well.
Sadly the first film is not done right.
Films 2 and 3 are actually pretty good, though the third one suffers from the same problems as the first.
The biggest issue I have is that too much time is spent on Ryoko and Ayeka chasing Tenchi, which doesn’t add anything to the plot. On the contrary, it draws attention from it and makes it seem unfocused and all over the place. That probably also alienates viewers not familiar with the main series (Tenchi Muyou!).
Since the first film has a similar plot to the 1996 TV show “Magical Project S” (which does it right), I recommend watching the series instead.
The other two films on the other hand are a must watch. Film 2 even starts off with a recap, making watching the first one unnecessary.
In the first episode, there are two men who’s voices are so comically horrendous it circles back to being enjoyable. Misao’s voice actress seems to have recorded her lines in a separate room from the mic, it’s so quiet. Sasami’s lines are much louder, which makes the scenes where they talk together almost unbearable.
The art is pretty good, if a little stiff at times, though this is an older show so it makes sense. There aren’t any moments where its particularly egregious to look at, though there aren’t any moments where it looks stunning.
The characters can be a little grating after a while, especially ryoko and ayeka
I enjoyed the show, though I definitely don’t think I would recommend it to anyone.
44: Gall Force 2: Destruction
Japanese: ガルフォース2 ディストラクション
MAL Score: 6.39
Lufy, discovered floating lifeless in space, is brought on board a Solnoid cruiser and given another chance at life. Once the hardened warrior, she is shown events that shake her faith (one’s own death seems to have a way of changing one’s philosophy) and lessening her power as a fighter just as that power is most needed!
43: Detonator Orgun
English: Detonator Orgun
Japanese: デトネイター オーガン
MAL Score: 6.43
Fleeing from his own race, Orgun—an alien being with superhuman abilities and unearthly weapons—travels to Earth to find an answer to his origin. There, he bonds with a young man named Tomoru to defend Earth against the Evoluders, who seek nothing but destruction of other civilizations.
In a far far future where you can turn on/off the tv or the lights by snapping your fingers (wow), a young man named Tomoru is having some disturbing dreams in the last days. In one of these dreams he encounters a robot named Orgun and other mechanical aliens. The dreams would turn out premonition given that an alien robot is attacking the city. Meanwhile, in a military lab, we see a robot that was rescued on the moon and that was rebuilt by Professor Kanzaki, a smart young woman, who is trying to find out what it actually is, when it breaks out from the lab and sets out to stop the other alien. This Robot, who is actually Orgun from Tomoru’s dreams finds and asks to merge with him so they can beat the hostile robot. By merging with Orgun, Tomoru gets some information about it and the enemies. Once they defeated the hostile robot, Tomoru tells Professor Kanzaki and the military that robotics invaders are actually an alien race called Evoluder who intend to destroy the Earth. Orgun is this alien race’s defector who traveled here to protect Earth.
The story begins a bit slow, in the first episode the protagonist has almost exactly the same dream twice and only by the end of the episode he met with Orgun.
The anime works with cool sci-fi ideas like human evolution and space travel. But unfortunately these ideas are not very well explored. There’s a lot of stuff going on and some irrelevant characters with a considerably amount of screen time. The OVA being so short it felt really rushed and underdeveloped in many parts.
The main character Tomoru is bland, he has no clear motivations, even when he understood Orgun and the threat of enemies, he spend the whole second episode bitching about piloting the mecha (get in the robot, Shinji). The dialogues with him are always boring and confusing as he is always indecisive and empty of any purpose. The only thing we understand about him is that he likes things from the 20th century’s stuff. And the anime is CONSTANTLY reminding you of that, his two dreams in the first episode had this weird WWII setting, he seems to have a obsession with the local museum, once its shown him in the movie theater watching a WWII film. There is even one scene in the first episode where in the middle of an alien attack, he is almost hit by Professor Kanzaki’s vintage car by accident and after almost dying the first thing he says is “Woow, the 1962 Jaguar E”. What’s the point of all this? None, they never explored / explained why these things are important to him.
Professor Kanzaki is the best character in this. She is the military scientist who is working on Orgun and, with her super computer I-Zack, is investigating the mystery behind the alien race. She is actually an artificial human created meant to have superior intelligence and abilities so it would to be exploited in times of war. She says she first resent these abilities, but then starts reflecting on overcoming the brilliant scientists who created her and now she wants to see what she is capable of. There is a romance between Professor Kanzaki and Tomoru that might have been good if it wasn’t for the lack of focus of this anime. They had like 3 short scenes together by the end of episode 2 and this was still played like a big thing in the final.
There’s this other woman, Yoko, who is an Earth’s military commander, but honestly she is not relevant at all. We don’t know many things about her she is not a crucial character, bt she is always there wasting screen time that could be better spent in any of the other things the anime was trying to do. She kisses Tomoru in the second episode, out of nowhere for no good reasons, so I think we have a love triangle now. Thanks anime, another pointless thing.
There’s this other kid who is an esper and is always is telling the future in TV. Later she becomes able to communicate with the aliens, and at the last battle she manages to move the sun because it would be somehow convenient to Orgun defeat the aliens. This felt like absolute bullshit, even for this anime. Also, she can move the damn sun, why the hell can’t she defeat he aliens by herself
The animation is quite good for its time and the last battle had really beautiful action scenes. The Orgun has a pretty cool design, it’s not a giant mech, is slightly bigger than a human, so it disassembles Tomoru’s body to fit him inside. It creates some tension when it’s revealed if Tomoru spend too much time merged with Orgun he might not be able to come back. But why his body come back to normal after being disassembled inside Orgun is never explained, they simply say that maybe there’s something special with him.
The music is good, I loved the closing songs. It is expected since it was composed by Susumu Hirasawa, known for his work in Berserk and some of Satoshi Kon’s anime.
Detonator Orgun is a cheesy anime with some audiovisuals and interesting ideas, there are many bad things about the story and characters but I can’t say it was boring. If you really are into Mecha and Sci-Fi stuff you might have some fun watching this.
42: Battle Athletess Daiundoukai
English: Battle Athletes
MAL Score: 6.48
It is the year 4999 – mankind has long abandoned war in favor of intergalactic competition through athletic events. One of which is an all-female contest for the coveted “Cosmo Beauty” title. Akari Kanzaki has just entered the University Satellite in hopes of becoming the latest Cosmic Beauty – a title held by her mother long ago. On her first few days in the university, she meets new friends, encounters fierce rivals, and struggles to become the best of all the Battle Athletes.
Considering this is the 90s, the animation is actually quite stunning and demonstrates anime’s increasing ability at the time to push the limit and illustrate things that modern live-action could not accomplish. The lighting of the competition torch on the university satellite via unmanned rocket, for example, really just took me away. Though character movement is staticky, you really have to hand it to the animators for delivering some great ideas for future sporting events.
The sound I can’t comment much on. It was there, it mixed well, but overall it was just plain. I won’t rate it badly but it’s nothing to talk any more about.
The story is jagged, but involved. Each episode seems to focus on a different sporting event as a result of training for the big competition at the end, which takes up the last two episodes. Certain elements, such as Mylandah’s extreme interpretation of competition, as well as Akari and Kris’s growing friendship carry over, and the story isn’t afraid to throw a twist out of nowhere either. However, because of the limited run, it really doesn’t carry out as successfully as it could have. Instead it comes off as a summary, with sporting events in-between.
The characters range from bland to incredible. The most incredible character, I thought, was Kris. She was well-developed and unique enough to stand out of the crowd. Unfortunately, she’s really the only who stands out. There are other characters like Tanya and Lahrri, who run on one aspect of their personality the entire run. Other characters, like Mylandah and Anna, also run on one aspect, but are saved by that aspect of their personality’s influence on the plot.
Overall, I really enjoyed Battle Athletes. It’s a good watch if you’re looking for something that’s involving enough that it doesn’t put you to sleep but short enough that you only have to dedicate a day or two to watching. Though it’s not the best, it is good.
One last note; From what I’ve heard, to really enjoy this OVA, you need to watch it before you watch the TV series, Battle Athletes Victory, which I hear is much better. However if the OVA is just a taste of what the series has to offer, I can’t wait to get into Victory.
Adding up the totals, Battle Athletes comes out to an overall 7. The art and a good portion of the characters make it stand out enough that you can overlook the majority of its faults. A quick watch and a fun one.
The series was also preachy with an unnecessary religious vibe regarding sports, but the set up for the given situation – as interesting as it was – was done poorly. I was also left thinking separate doesn’t mean equal – the boy’s school isn’t mentioned until plot relevant and quickly leaves, yet I was left feeling as if this was content pandering to a male audience. Well, it it is shounen after all. I couldn’t help but feel the work was a bit fanservacy.
It’s also worth noting there is LGBT content, yet I feel this was meant to pander towards the male audience rather than really have representation. Personally, I wished for a little more development regarding these elements.
This said, character, art and sound were top notch, not to mention the fact I could follow through with the movements even if some of the things didn’t make sense, like a certain student not getting punished despite the fact a computer system would be able to detect she was messing with such things.
41: Shukufuku no Campanella: La Campanella Della Benedizione
Japanese: 祝福のカンパネラ -la campanella della benedizione-
MAL Score: 6.49
The story takes place in a trading city Eta’Aria. Leicester Maycraft is an item engineer belonging to an adventurer guild “Oasis”. One night, he is at a party with his friends to see a meteor stream on the rooftop of a chapel.
Artwise, its the same as the parent series. Nothing exceptional, but not lacking
Likewise, for sound, is also borrowed from the parent series. Explosions sound like explosions.
It really doesn’t feel like an OVA, more like a series of shorts bundled together. Of course, the shorts have a coherent story in them.
All in all, I consider it better than the parent series because it does what it needed to do and a little more.
40: The Hakkenden: Shin Shou
English: The Hakkenden: Legend of the Dog Warriors Part 2
Japanese: THE八犬伝 新章
MAL Score: 6.50
Second part of The Hakkenden.
This part of the OVA series blurs the lines between reality and illusion even further than the first 6 episodes. Strange is the word, but you will see plenty of bloody battles, and a lot of the dark side of humanity. I want to also remind of the time period this is based in, we are talking the mid 1400’s.
The animation styles vary in a couple episodes, in fact I absolutely hated the animation in episode 10/13. I loved the episode as a psychosis snapping episode, but I barely made it through the episode due to the animation style. That episode aside, the rest is pretty much right in line with the first part of the series in animation and sound. It wasn’t the best of the time period, and it was mediocre in these categories at best.
The story however takes a turn towards the realm of very strange, and I really liked that about this story. It isn’t your happy “the good guys will triumph in glory” type of story. In fact, you will most likely end this series asking “what the heck did I just watch” or you’ll feel strangely at ease with the open feeling at the end. It really is a cerebral challenge, and that’s what makes it good. The ending of the story ties you back to the beginning, which is necessary after the roller coaster ride they take you on through the story. I cannot say that they tie everything up in a pretty ribbon for you, in fact I had a similar feeling at the end of Neon Genesis Evangelion. Now I am not saying they are the same, but I am merely comparing to the emotional state I had as a viewer with the ending of both.
This is different than the current norm, and that’s what I liked. Keep these comments in mind if you want to check this series out. Lastly I will explain why I gave both runs of this OVA series a 7 overall. Quite simply I liked it, but I wouldn’t call it a masterpiece. I like strange and different in my anime at times, and though I liked it, I didn’t love it. It is worth watching once or twice, but it doesn’t have high repeat value.
39: Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 5th Season
Japanese: 天地無用! 魎皇鬼 第伍期
MAL Score: 6.51
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The art is jus plain ugly and calling the animation limited would be charitable. The bottom of the character design barrel has been well and truly scraped with true abominations making the cut. I have nothing to say about the music because I cannot recall a single note of it.
I must admit that Tenchi Muyo was a formative element in my anime fandom so to see it fall so far and so hard is genuinely distressing. Scenes that should be invoking nostalgia and warmth only stir up regret and sadness. Hopefully this is truly the end.
yes i will FREELY ADMIT to pro-Tenchi bias. the first first first OVA series was one my two earliest anime dub DVD purchases. and yes, i am that old. i’m old enough to have rented and seen ROBOTECH’s dub on VHS in 1990 from Harmony Gold not even six months after the first tapes were sold in the USA. so the first dubbed Tenchi OVAs were on DVD for more than a year before i could find them for sale. but i got them and the Evangelion DVDs as fast as my allowance could buy them.
this review’s gonna be a BIT spoiler filled! i’ll try and generalize as MUCH as possible! plus it’ll be tl;dr but tough. read through it. you might learn something.
overall for the Tenchi franchise … what can i say that hasn’t been said about previous iterations seasons OVAs movies in the franchise? the TIMELINES/PLOTLINES SUCKS! heh. #1 thing anybody just getting into the Tenchi franchise should know is that. #2 THE MOVIES DON’T COUNT! heh. yeah. they’re almost ALMOST all worthless one-off anime-only original movies. MOSTLY! i won’t spoil so watch and figure out which is all original and which actually blends into the ‘canon storylines’. i’m NOT saying the movies SUCK! i’m saying the Movies are worthless in that they don’t tell the Main Storyline of the franchise properly. #3 THE SOURCE(s) have NOT been officially English translated to date! don’t rely on fanslations, they’re sketchy at best.
as to ‘TMRO’ Season 4 and now Season 5 yes, they’re not looking EXACTLY like the oldest and kinda older Tenchi shows/movies. the baseline design changes are minimal at best for characters. only 1 or 2 were entirely revamped. if you watch ‘GXP’ or ‘War On Geminar’ before ‘TMRO’ S4,5 you’ll see a few characters with all new looks and some characters never before seen in any Tenchi show. you know why?
…. spoiler-ish here… there’s a ‘GXP’ Story Arc that happens immediately AFTER!!! ‘GXP’ final episode’s Wedding Ceremony that lasts quite a while in the sources. yeah i can’t read em, but i’ve got internet buddies in Japan who’ve read em and told me as such. this ‘GXP’ story arc finishes in-and around ‘TMRO’ S4 when Kenshi is born until around where he’s 5y/o. my sources were kinda sorta iffy on this ‘GXP’ storyline’s ending since ‘TMRO’ S4 hadn’t even been in pre-pre production yet when i asked around amongst my Japanese acquaintances.
as to story? hell yeah it’s damn complex! the original OVAs were done in the 1990’s! dang. name me an anime that damn old that’s STILL producing episodes today? Dragonball’s the only show i know of with that long of a production length. plus there’s THREE Main Characters with their own separate but intertwining stories, Kenshi, Tenchi, and Seina. so ‘TMRO’ S4,5 have sketchy stories? no, not really. there’s just TOO MUCH backstory behind all these characters and there’s SO MANY characters included in S4 and S5. there’s some space fights, some training arcs… heck many of the episodes’ meat is ALL training. there’s a reason for all these peculiar stories, that’s my next paragraph.
do we finally learn how ‘serious’ Tenchi gets with his harem? do we finally learn how serious Kenshi gets with his harem? do we learn just WHY Kenshi’s like he is during ‘War On Geminar’? yup, we sure do. go watch ‘TMRO’ S4,5 and learn. is EVERYTHING about Tenchi? NO! is EVERYTHING about Seina? NO! in my opinion? ‘TMRO’ S4,5 do three main things with the franchise story:
1. retell the wedding of Rea and Nobuyuki that was just barely animated previously.
2. cross-link all the Tenchi and Seina storylines with BACKSTORIES and move those two guys and their harem’s storylines forwards.
3. and most important i think after watching ‘TMRO’ S4,5… give us Kenshi’s life from his parents getting married till he arrives on Geminar.
art? snort. it’s very good! well above average for any TV series out there. these are OVAs folks, they come to us spread out over months and years. plus remember 2020? covid lockdowns all over the world? don’t ever forget that pretty much halted ALL anime production in Japan lots of times for lots of projects.
sound? as best as i can tell every old OVA and TV series character’s got the same Voice Talent. the OP/EP songs are great, the theme pieces in the bodies of the eps are great, the foley and sound effects are great.
character, as i’ve said… there’s a buttload of them! some of them don’t get diddly for backstory! as i said before there’s a whole ‘GXP/Seina/his harem’ story arc left out of ALL the anime to date. there’s characters on screen who’ve got lines, actions, interactions with little to nothing known about them other than a name. sure this sucks… but without putting dozens of minutes aside for randomly inserted expositions and flashbacks and whatnot the ENTIRE cast just can’t be backfilled into two season’s worth of OVAs. but the classic Tenchi and Seina characters are alive and well and as fun as ever! and and AND we see maturity amongst the classic rivals inside the harems! it’s not all catfights and insults flying and fist-fights and supernatural etc. duels destroying everything around them. plus the girls all grow up and look great! 😉 the lil ones get va va voom! and the peculiar ones get ooh la la! and there’s mmm ehhh… 15ish years of timeline moving along in ‘TMRO’ S4,5.
enjoyment, hmm… binge the entire franchise EXCEPT ‘War On Geminar’ BEFORE watching ‘TMRO’ S4,5… after the final episode of S5 watch ‘Geminar’ THEN! i watched the entire franchise before watching a single episode of ‘TMRO’ S4 and loved it. it had been only the third time i’d watched the entire Tenchi franchise in one go-through in 31 years.
overall? whew! S4,5 filled in HUGE GAPS i didn’t even know existed from the end of the previous OVAs and Geminar and TV series. i can’t say S4,5 are the BEST parts of the franchise. but they’re still GREAT shows.
i hope you enjoyed my review and learned a great deal of things. 😀
Also if you read the novels (I haven’t) you’ll definitely appreciate some of those characters being animated here.
I enjoyed the new season A LOT. I always wanted a new Geminar season so this was nice to get. I’m still hoping though.
All of the favorites are here, plus more. It was nice to see all the oldies again and especially the spinoff characters here.
Why is MAL causing me to write such a long review? Other people didn’t write nearly as much as this…
38: Parasite Dolls
MAL Score: 6.56
A secret unit of the AD Police, known as Branch, specializes in crimes involving humanoid robots called ‘Boomers’. Branch officer Buzz must cope with having a Boomer for a partner, while officer Michaelson finds the line between human and robot to be a thin one. Together they serve to protect a world that is slowly deconstructing around them. Set in the Bubblegum Crisis universe.
The characters do manage to be somewhat interesting, and are introduced rather well in the first episode, giving the viewer a good sense of their personality, and their relation to each other. However, the show also fails to build upon them, and in the second and third episodes they fall into the background while the show continues to bring it’s convoluted plot to the forefront.
The story is accompanied by a cheesy sounding, but still somewhat entertaining soundtrack that doesn’t amaze, but gets the job done well enough. The voice acting (in the English Dub) similarly, doesn’t amaze, but is also not horrible or grating to listen to. Overall, the audio is pretty standard, and doesn’t seem very good or very bad.
The most positive thing I can say about this OVA is that it was fairly impressive in terms of the animation. Everything moved very fluidly, and the characters all had unique, yet not outlandish, designs. However, the art styles also seem a bit mixed. In the first two episodes, the art seemed pretty consistent. However, in the third episode, there’s a slight change in art style, and it gets overloaded with subtle CG effects. Because of that, it doesn’t look quite as good as the first two episodes, and it complicates what would have otherwise been purely a traditionally animated OVA.
Overall, Parasite Dolls is a cyberpunk anime that tries too hard to emulate aspects of other popular cyberpunk films. It tries to carve out it’s own niche, and attempts to create some interesting characters, but with each new episode it slowly loses it’s appeal, and ultimately never capitalizes on it’s initial potential. By the end, all that’s left is a husk of a show. One that I enjoyed, but still wonder about how much better it could have been.
I give Parasite Dolls a 6/10.
It is some old school, hand drawn, gritty cyber-punk. It is very adult themed, with ideas about human sexuality in the age of androids being interwoven into the story.
The soundtrack is really, really good. It is some underground type EDM stuff that goes really well with the dark drawing and atmosphere of the whole show.
Old school cyber punk style anime is kind of my thing, and this is one of the best out there.
37: Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 4th Season
Japanese: 天地無用！魎皇鬼 第四期
MAL Score: 6.59
The entire Jurai and Masaki family is in a celebratory mood as Nobuyuki and Rea are finally tying the knot! In the days leading up to his father’s wedding, Tenchi reunites with those he met throughout his journey as well as gets acquainted with some new family members. Though this is a blissful time where everyone is finally together, there is one major bump in the road: Rea holds a major secret that will change the fate of her future child and disturb the balance of the Masaki family.
Second, my view on this 4 seasons of the show, the first season was a solid and enjoyable entry that I really recommend for anyone that likes cute girls, harem and an actual story. Second season is a bit worse than the first one but it’s decent too. Third and Fourth are a bit disappointing.
The problem with this show is that it feels stale, there is no progression and the plot becomes less important with every season. The lack of focus in the characters also hurt the harem part and in the last 2 seasons I doubt if you could even call this show a harem because of the lack of romance… and ecchi. This show becomes kinda like a SoL with no focus on the characters, and to shake up the things a bit the keep adding and discarding characters without developing anything.
In terms of animation, the first one has the best one (and it’s actually good compared to most of todays shows) and it really made the story more enjoyable. Seasons 2 animation was kinda weak and in s3 and 4 it was fine.
Art, it improves with every season imo.
Overrall, a decent franchise that deserves to be checked out, but the last 2 seasons of the main series are a bit disappointing… but they never reached the point of being “bad”.
I decided to made my review in the season because I think that the advise is the most important part of the review, lol.
This is not something i can say about OVA4.
Where is it? The animation and art work is bare bones, everyone basically just stands around talking about nothing. This is a far cry from the amazing cel work done in OVA 1 and OVA 2.
Man, my favorite part of Tenchi Muyo, the part that truly brought me into this show all those years ago, is where they all stand around talking about characters from other shows and spin offs.
I remember, back in OVA 1, being absolutely riveted as everyone sat around a table talking about silk. Or or! I remember that part in OVA season 2, where they spent a whole episode around a table, talking about characters from other shows! Oh man, i just loved it in OVA 1 where instead of fighting Kagato, they sat around a table and talked. Or that part in OVA2 where they dealt with Dr. Clay, by sitting around a table talking. I just loved when they talked about Zero, but never actually showed her. Oh and how could i forget that episode in OVA 3 where a bunch of characters i have never seen all sat around a table talking about who will get married next.
Oh! My absolute favorite part was in OVA2 where half of a episode was spent around a table advertising a show that came out 7 years prior? Man i just loved that part.
When I watch Tenchi Muyo, I want to watch Tenchi Muyo. I want to see the antics of Tenchi, Ayeka, Ryoko, Mihoshi, Washu, Sasami and Ryo-ohki. Not characters from GXP, and not characters from Gemini. For example, none of the original characters even show up in OVA2 until past the 10 minute mark. As some one who has no interest in GXP or Gemini, i had just about no clue who any of these people are. And even worse they don’t even show who all they are talking about, so i hope you have all their names memorized!.
~ Scene: Everyone is sitting at a table ~
“Hey hows is Character X from GXP?” “Oh he is doing good”
“Hey how is Character Y from Gemini doing?” “Not to bad”
“Hey hey, you remember Character Z from GXP?” “Oh yeah, i heard he is still in space”
Repeat until end credits.
Oh and now Tenchi has yet another sister who wants in his bed right from the get go.
What music? There is a opening and ending song, and that about it. Background music is nearly non-existent.
This is not my Tenchi Muyo Ryo-ohki.
You could have removed all of the original characters: Tenchi, Ryoko, Ayeka, Sasami, Ryo-ohki, Washu and Mihoshi from this show and it would not have made one difference at all. I mean, its not like they had any screen time here anyways.
If you already seen the 3rd season. You don’t need to watch the 4th season at all, because most of the plot is reused from season 3.
The whole plot of this series is literally about alternate Tenchi Muyou universes series characters while reusing plot from the original trilogy. This is not Tenchi Muyou Ryououki anymore. The main characters barely exist in this series. The only thing that exists is maybe the Tenchi residence.
The way they do it is by cutting everything the show had good in it, starting with the main characters, with the art itself, and by literally throwing dialogue as a main plot device, to introduce a new main character in the place of Tenchi. The original characters have little to nothing to do with this show, while there are introduced up to 20 characters per episode.
The art was wholly digital, and the old Tenchi drawing style was redone into a new one. Most of the characters where copy paste with few alters. Colors were poor. Very few shades were used. Contours, what are those. The backgrounds where redone as well and because of that we won’t be seeing but few residences, most of the time – Tenchi’s.
Sound was obviously poor. I am ashamed to hear this. The intro and the outro changed the whole tonality of the show. They don’t have anything to do with it really.
The story is awful. There is nothing but too much dialogue with little to nothing about anything that really matters in this series which is hard to follow and make sense of it.
36: Ai no Kusabi (2012)
MAL Score: 6.60
The story is set in the future on the planet named Amoi which is controlled by a supercomputer named Jupiter. Among the mostly male human population, the light-haired elite class is allowed to temporarily keep the dark-haired “mongrels” as pets. One elite member, Iason, encounters a mongrel named Riki in the slums and decides to take him in. However, Iason keeps Riki longer than it is socially approved, and rumors abound about their possible relationship.
It’s set in a fictional world with mostly men because of some genetic issues. The society is divided into castes where elites are at the top and mongrels at the bottom. The story revolves around an elite and a mongrel but don’t get the wrong idea, this isn’t a Romeo and Juliet spin off.
Iason Mink, an elite of the highest degree, encounters Rikki, a mongrel, in slums. He finds him interesting so after some events, takes him in as his… well… pet (read: sex toy). After 3 years of captivity, Riki’s rather restless and keeps making Iason trouble. That’s where the first OVA starts. Riki unsuccessfully tries to escape and Iason, pressed on by other elites decides to free him for a year, hoping he would come back on his own.
Don’t expect any sort of cheesy romance without point or the usual falling in love after being raped thing. The story follows Riki as he tries to fit back in into slums and regain his past reputation. However, stuff don’t go as easily since everyone keeps asking him where he was for the past 3 years and his former lover is trying to get back together with him at all cost. It all gets even more complicated when Iason decides that Riki had enough freedom and tries to get him back.
The only complaint I have about the story is, that it’s unfinished.
Truly amazing, one of the best things about the anime. It shows that it was done recently. Character designs are also very interesting, even of the side characters.
Incredible opening and ending, both fit perfectly to the anime. VA’s are very good and I don’t think they could have picked better for those characters.
Characters are about the most interesting part of the story. Riki is strong, prideful and arrogant. His nature is part of his inner struggle to figure out his feelings towards Iason. He hates him for imprisoning him and treating him like a toy. There’s even a moment when he spaces out obviously in fear from his memories after seeing him after a long time. At the same time it’s clearly shown by his actions that he is attracted by Iason ever since they met but he isn’t and doesn’t want to be aware of that.
Iason, on the other hand, is completely aware of his feelings for Riki but it never happened to him before so he’s confused by himself.
Other characters have a role in the story. We have Gai, Riki’s former lover who tries to make Riki open up and return to him, Kirie a boy who wants to become a pet and enjoy life full of money, Katze mysterious guy working in black market who was once Iason’s servant so he keeps in touch with him and the rest of Riki’s former gang.
Enjoyment: 9/10 (AKA yaoi scenes)
This is a true gem in the yaoi world. I don’t think I’ve seen a yaoi that would do them better than this. They didn’t feel forced, they weren’t randomly thrown to please fans and it wasn’t the typical girly, unexperienced and shy uke with the perverted and experienced seme. They were both perverted and at some points Riki seemed more experienced than Iason. Censorship is there but it doesn’t feel awkward and it never made me want to hit my fist through the screen unlike many other yaoi.
Overall: 9.5/10 (rounded to 9 because of no ending)
If you are bored with stupid and annoying romance in usual shounen ai like me. Then this anime is exactly for you.
Of course it’s -almost- the same story with absolutely the same characters, but this rendition is not as intense as the old one. It doesn’t add anything, possibly it waters down the story and the tension.
Note that the story in these four OVA is not complete. It was in the two OVA old version.
I like the concept of Ai no Kusabi, the plot, the set, the characters, and I’d like to watch a very extended and complete version of it, but I think I gained nothing from watching this.
35: Maken-Ki! OVA
Japanese: マケン姫っ！ OVA
MAL Score: 6.61
OVA episodes bundled with the 8th and 11th volumes of the manga.
Boobs, butts and panty shots are plenty. If you watch the uncensored, you won’t be disappointed.
If you had watched the first season and skipped the OVA’s, the amount of plot they’ve entered into these wouldn’t effect you at all. It’s really barely anything, and it’s only in the first one. The second doesn’t have any ‘main story’ involved in it at all.
You love nips and weird, yet hilarious scenarios? Then these OVA’s are for you.
Tentacles, girl on girl action and guys getting in trouble for being pervy.
Naked teachers? There’s some of those too.
What to expect in an ecchi OVA in general
-Bath scenes (its expected)
– Perverts getting caught and then beaten savagely by the tsundere character
– Teachers wearing the most indecent clothes
– Tentacles of course
– and more Boobs
This OVA continued on with the Maken-Ki series suggesting there might be a second. This OVA is your Mediocre story line of a pair of Boobs on a beach and a tentacle monster raping these boobs. I dont know what ecchi show hasnt shown a tentacle monster.
The storyline and characters are average and nothing different but the art and sound are the strongest points in this OVA. I enjoyed the show so I was sorta expecting a bit more from it.
Overall this would be a 6.5 for me but I decided to round it up to a 7
34: Green Legend Ran
MAL Score: 6.63
A story of future Earth – A warning for mankind: In the future, our planet will be transformed into a strange new world where human life struggles on an Earth without rain or oceans – only vast, parched deserts.
Two youths fight for survival on our hostile planet and find hope. The sea, the sky and the land had been completely polluted by mankind when mysterious objects fall from the heavens. These titanic vessels smash into the planet and suck up the air, water, and most living creatures into their womb, stealing away the very essence of Earth`s nature.
The few remaining inhabitants struggle for survival against a hostile environment and an oppressive ruling race known as the Rodo. One young, hot-blooded human named Ran, fights against the Rodo and a world in which rain is only a legend. He strives to join an Anti-Rodo group known as the Hazzard, not only to defeat the Rodo, but also to hunt down the man who killed his mother.
And that’s a major problem for Green Legend Ran: It has lots of interesting ideas, but it doesn’t spend the appropriate amount of time on each one, and in that way its two hour run time paradoxically feels both too long and too short. The narrative that’s woven between all of these concepts can be a little jarring as a result, causing the motivations of some characters to come into question. Some holes are present in the plot, too. While it’s not really hard to catch on eventually, it is hard to feel engaged when you’re not always invested in what’s going on. And, although the concepts can be interesting, they’re sometimes relegated to expository dialogue instead of being explored through actions.
The main characters of this OVA are Ran and Aira, and they have some pretty good chemistry together. In fact, the best scene of the series is simply a lighthearted one that features the two of them playfully getting to know each other while on an errand to fetch some resources. The animators portray their body language so fluidly and realistically here that it’s just really fun to watch. But, as fun as it is, the scene’s simply not long enough to convince the viewer that Ran already feels as strongly as he does for Aira. As soon as she gets snatched up by the bad guys, he’s already dead set on risking his life for her, and they’ve only talked for what was maybe twenty minutes at best. Not only is this abrupt parting unsuccessful in providing a compelling character motivation for Ran, it also robs the rest of the series of further interactions between these two characters, which is especially disappointing.
Ran himself isn’t exactly the most likable character, either—at least sometimes. It’s an odd situation where the show clearly tries its hardest to make you care for him…and you know, it does work to an extent, but there’s just something about it that doesn’t feel genuine—like they were going through a checklist of things they could mix together to make a protagonist that would earn your sympathy, when ultimately he just comes across as a nasally-voiced little shit half the time. The emotional climaxes of his arc seem kind of awkward, too, probably due to him hardly getting the chances to interact with those characters who are supposed to be so important to him. However, Ran does have some cute moments with Jeke that do manage to feel genuine despite their predictability.
What probably ends up being the most fascinating aspect of this series is its atypical interpretation of environmentalism. It’s almost the antithesis to the idealistic pro-earth beliefs of someone like Hayao Miyazaki; here, rather than being put on a pedestal, the forces of nature are represented by an oppressive alien god who actually feels like an exaggerated mockery of the type of person who would love nothing more than to see the earth purged of us “rotten humans” who do nothing but destroy it. This series proposes that wishing for such a thing would probably be going too far and that moderation is important for both sides. To be fair, though, Miyazaki’s works never quite go that far either, as they usually end on the hopeful note of giving humans a second chance. However, nature is usually portrayed as the side that’s deserving of the most respect in his stories, and it’ll certainly never be painted as the villain. (And, if you’ve read certain quotes from the man, you’ll know he’s the type who’d probably be more in agreement with the “screw humanity” creed of the alien god of this story.) Regardless, it is refreshing to see an anime that tackles this subject matter from an angle that’s different from what’s seen most of the time.
Now, if there’s one thing that’s clear about this OVA it’s that it looks very good. It’s got appealing character designs, the animation is stellar, and there’s a lot of momentum that’s given to every action; objects and characters have a nice physicality and weight to them. The setting of the series also really comes through in the creative shot compositions that show off the gorgeous landscapes of the desert and the rows of rusty industrial buildings. There’s also a great use of lighting here, where vivid, colorful rays and other shapes frequently shine though and pop against the darker backdrops creating an atmosphere with a lot of depth. The only negative when it comes to the look of the show is the occasional use of black gradients that are thrown on top of shots which looks pretty lazy and distracting. But, other than that, the visuals provide nothing but eye candy throughout the entire series.
The more I think about it, the more the story of Green Legend Ran actually feels like something better suited for a long JRPG, where all of its ideas could’ve had the time to shine. Some scenes even feature segments that could’ve easily been gameplay instead, particularly one moment where Ran has to follow directions written on notes left by another character in order to make it through a mysterious maze. That being said, the glimpse we do get of this world, however disjointed, is one that’s filled with imagination. Its attitude towards the environmentalism debate is intriguing enough on its own.
In the distant future our planet has been transformed into a world of desserts after giant extra terrestrials dropped onto our planet. There are contained patches of green, but they’re few and hidden away. In this world, the ruling class is made up of the Rodoists, people who worship the invading aliens and control the water supply. An opposition faction called Hazzard has also stepped up to fight against the Rodoists while most people are caught in the middle. We follow Ran, a young man who wants to join Hazzard to take revenge for his mother’s death. She was killed by a man with a scar on his chest during a confrontation betwixt the Rodoists & Hazzard. He meets up with Hazzard and befriends a girl his age named Aira. She’s immediately abnormal because of her silver hair. Normally that wouldn’t be strange in an anime, but in this one it’s significant. What does her silver hair mean? Will Ran manage to find his mother’s killer? What will happen between the factions?
While there are some interesting ideas on display, the execution leaves much to be desired. The series is pretty passable at building things up but its resolutions tend to last for all of thirty seconds and be unsatisfying. Ran spends most of the OVA repeating himself and contributing very little to the events that are happening. The story arc manages to simultaneously drag and skip over important elements. We’ll get long, slow periods that will contribute little or repeat information we already have and then we’ll skip ahead in time and be left with the impression that something important happened between the scenes but they aren’t sharing what. The environmental message in this is also really unsubtle and in your face. On a scale of Captain Planet bad to a Miyazaki film, it comes considerably closer to Captain Planet.
To the OVA’s credit, it does have some pretty strong moments when it manages to keep its focus. I also do kind of like the ending to the series. It does subvert the kind of ending you’d expect.
There are some major problems with the characterisation in this OVA. First off, there are the villains. When a villain is supposed to be somewhat sympathetic, the series tries to hammer that in with really stilted dialogue. Which may or may not work. When a villain is just a villain, they’re cartoonishly, over the top evil. Then we have Ran himself. He’s a really dull character. It doesn’t help that he’s largely completely inept and just yammers on about the same things constantly. There’s also the dynamic betwixt Aira and Ran. It comes across as completely contrived in order to move the plot. They spend maybe a day in one another’s company and all of a sudden they’re the best of friends and willing to completely rely on one another. I would only buy that if one of them was actually a dog. Not a dog in human form, but a literal dog of some kind.
The artwork and animation vary. On one hand, the OVA is quite good when it comes to strange, surreal imagery. There are quite a few scenes that employ that aesthetic effectively. In contrast, their stuff with ordinary people can be pretty bad. There are a lot of awkward movements that no normal human would do without actively trying to contort themselves, a lot of awkward facial expressions that don’t actually match the emotion that the character is supposed to be conveying and a lot of action sequences weakened by a combination thereof. There’s also the design of their desert suits to be considered. They look like they’re made of heavy material and they have completely unnecessary shoulder pads. Because when you’re under a hot sun, you want heavy material with extra features that weigh you down. There’s also the question of how they’re supposed to function. They look a bit like diving suits. Initially, I thought they might be like proto-stillsuits where they recycle a character’s lost moisture but there’s never any indication that they can get moisture from them. It’s almost like they didn’t even consider functionality and just designed something stupid. At least it wasn’t a battle bikini.
The performances in this aren’t bad but they aren’t good either. Ultimately what we get from Kikuchi Hidehiro, Yayoi Mitsuki and the others are passable performances. The music from Yoshikawa Youichirou is decent enough. It’s not as good as the soundtrack he did for Iria, certainly, but it’s all right.
Don’t expect to find any here.
Ultimately, Green Legend Ran is a series with a promising premise, that’s held back by poor execution. The story ends up with more weak moments than strong moments. The characters are largely bland, or worse. The artwork is bad when it comes to conveying normalcy and the acting is just mediocre. It’s not a bad little OVA, but in the end, my final rating is going to be a 4/10. It’s weak. Next week I’ll look at another OVA with AD Police.
33: Megane na Kanojo
MAL Score: 6.66
For most people, wearing glasses is a necessity for clear sight, but for four young girls, their spectacles mean so much more. From a teenage girl wearing her glasses with pride and a top idol who uses hers to disguise herself as a regular person, to a couple whose bent frames bring them closer together, a good pair of glasses can not only open your eyes, but also open your heart.
first, this anime only have 4 episode where each episode tell diffrent girl story. i was hoping it will get another episode but i think it will not happen
this yet is the best romance in my opinion, because every episode give heart-warming romance story.
with good art in making glasses cute girl looks even cuter, nice background, for sound, i like the OP, every character have nice story why they are using glasses, and every character have their own story. for enjoyment i thing i will give score 9, because i never watch this kind of romance anime before.
thanks for reading my review. sorry for my bad english. happy watching 😀
Story (8 / 10)
The story points almost all the girls who wears “Glasses” in japanese its “Megane”. All the arcs are soft-plained romance, its like a teaser on how they will fall in-love with each other and how the mutual understanding progress. All the arcs we’re analyze very well so it won’t be so boring even if its just a soft romance one shot episode series.
Art (8 / 10)
The art plainly great! I feel like watching Honey and Clover. All the glasses heroines are cute so their an exception. The blushes makes it way more cuter but I hope they didn’t made an exaggeration on the glasses coz its looks way big. Its not fantastic like the other series but the soft romantic feeling make it look great already. It doesn’t need more graphic and exaggeration. Its good as it use to be 🙂 but having a clearer and sharpen animation would be a little better I guess 😀
Sound (8 / 10)
It matches the genre of the anime. The opening and ending song was good but not a top notched to buy a single album of it. The romantic background sound and some other setting background music does suit the series. It suit it at least.
Character (7 / 10)
The character was just good but having the girl to make the move made me little disappointing. They also made the protagonist to look like an idiot but overall the actions and personality each of them are on terms at least.
Enjoyment (6 / 10)
I fairly enjoyed the series because of the weird glasses plot in it but most its disappointing because its way too short. They should’ve made it at least 27 – 30 minutes. Each episodes are kinda cliffhanging and that’s the worst of it but at least I understand the producers about what they did so its just good as fair.
Overall (7 / 10)
Its fairly good at least, it made me feel light seeing youth being in love. It was just a teasing romantic anime but its still twitterpating in some sort of reason. The glasses made it more enticing if you have huge fetishes on Girls who wears Glasses. You will totally scream like “MOE~~~!” then add some kyun~! in the end hehe.
32: Nekogami Yaoyorozu: Ohanami Ghostbusters
English: Cat God: Ohanami Ghostbusters
Japanese: 猫神やおよろず お花見ゴーストバスターズ
MAL Score: 6.67
According to the official website, an OVA of Nekogami Yaoyorozu was announced to be released on March 21st 2012.
31: R-15: R15 Shounen Hyouryuuki
Japanese: あーるじゅうご R15少年漂流記
MAL Score: 6.70
According to Kadokawa, an OVA of R-15 will be bundled with the tenth volume of the novel.
Well, story wise it should have been place along as one its parent anime’s episode, there no plot just a whole lot of mayhem where there is a little bit of this, some of that and a lot of those, all thanks to Kurumi,Tsukuru,Raika and Katsuyo .
Art, sound and character- Mediocre 5.
No explanations needed.
Enjoyment and Overall – Fair 6.
Ok, before some of you guys give me some useless rant as for the score let me just say that the number 6 rating for the 2 is for the uncensored ecchi of this OVA, were it is the enjoyable part, everything else is just plain BS.
30: Bastard!!: Ankoku no Hakaishin
Japanese: バスタード!! 暗黒の破壊神
MAL Score: 6.73
The kingdom of Metallicana is under attack from the Four Lords of Havoc. This party of villains—ninja master Gara, deadly thunder empress Nei Arshes, cold and calculating Kall-Su, and enigmatic dark priest Abigail—will stop at nothing to get what they want, even if it leaves utter destruction in their wake.
High Priest Geo is desperate to help save the kingdom and its people. He unleashes the mighty wizard Dark Schneider, a man who used to be an ally of the villains. Unfortunately, Dark Schneider has his own plans in mind. Will he stop the Four Lords of Havoc or join them in their conquest of the world?
Let’s compile a brief checklist of the bad. We have:
* a cliche-ridden story;
* a nonsensical amount of injuries (and blood loss) casually sustained by characters;
* pathetic sound effects;
* character design that is both bad AND forgettable (wow!);
* ridiculous screenplay and over-the-top voice acting;
* vomit-inducing fan service and ecchi humor;
* overpowered fighters and magicians beating the crap out of each other with named trump-card techniques;
* the essence of MANLINESS furiously emanating from most of the male cast with not a single female around who wouldn’t be in heat over this;
* ripping off the naming of characters/locations/abilities after rock/metal music bands after JoJo had already done it.
If you’re easily entertained by any of the above, chances are you’ll like it and perhaps even regard it as one of the most entertaining OVAs ever. It plays all of these tropes completely straight, not ashamed of itself in any measure, and this self-indulgent sincerity is what makes it so fun. Those with less-developed sense of humor will rather think otherwise. Really, if you fail to be amused by Bastard!!, you most likely won’t enjoy it in any other way. It’s still an outstanding piece of crap from any serious standpoint, and don’t blame me for not warning you.
And in conclusion, just to prove how delightfully bad it is to those who still aren’t convinced, here’s my favorite quote from episode 2:
Yoko: What are you going to do?
(green slime starts pouring from walls)
Gara: That’s right, it’s slime. It will dissolve your clothes.
I dare you to come up with a better response. I double-dog-dare you, highbrow MAL readers.
There’s only one problem. Dark Schneider is a freak.
Nevertheless, when your kingdom is under fire from the most powerful magic known to man, you resurrect whomever you can. With Yoko’s kiss, Rushe becomes the legendary Dark Schneider. Now he’s not really happy about the arrangement, since he was essentially imprisoned for a very long time. Eventually, he figures, why not? He’d love to prove that he’s still the most powerful being on Earth, and if that takes defeating some of his old comrades in arms, so be it. As long as he can get his groove on, he’s happy…but is a rusty white-haired jerk of a warlock going to be able to handle the job?
Bastard! really is a fun show, at least through its first half. Things move quickly and the artwork is great in the first two episodes. The humor is fresh and invigorating, too. If nothing else, when things get a little tired past this point, that start keeps you going. Now the third episode shows a little bit of problems, primarily because the artistic style takes a big left turn. A couple of characters are hard to identify at first because of the changes! But that’s something that can be dealt with.
However, the second half gets a little snoozeworthy. Here’s where Dark Schneider takes on his foes in humongous battles. Now I’m all for great melees, myself, but these just get old quickly. There’s just not enough excitement to them and no sense of real danger–if a hero cannot lose, then a half hour of violence is pretty worthless. Now there is a surprise at the end of the fifth episode that some might find shocking, but it is negated in the sixth episode. So, for the last 90 minutes, we get a little antsy, particularly because the humor and life starts to slowly drain out like the water in a tub where the drain cap doesn’t quite fit. It’s not terrible, but unfortunate.
There’s also a very real problem in that much of the show’s humor is based around something that didn’t get completely translated. In the original version, the various kingdoms, spells, etc. were all named after different 80s metal and hair bands. Because of copyright issues, a lot of these jokes didn’t make it into the official US release. My best recommendation is to watch with the Japanese language track where at least the names are pronounced correctly and you can get in on the jokes. I mean, the funniest parts of the show are things like the “Stryper defense”!
So what’s my position on this show? If you like violent, humorous fantasy shows with long battle sequences, this is something to run out and get as soon as possible. If your tastes are a bit more refined, then this is a questionable pick. I wish that the show had stayed on the funny, likable, yet action-packed track it set for itself in the beginning. It’s not bad, but it starts off better than it finishes.
29: Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai Episode 0
Japanese: 僕は友達が少ない 第0語
MAL Score: 6.73
Hasegawa Kodaka has transferred schools, and he’s having a hard time making friends. It doesn’t help that his blond hair tends to make people think he’s a delinquent. One day, he runs into his bad-tempered solitary classmate Yozora while she’s talking animatedly to her imaginary friend Tomo. Realizing that neither of them have any actual friends, they decide that the best way to alter this situation is to form a club and start recruiting.
That is how “Rinjinbu”, The Neighbours’ Club, was formed, a club specifically designed for people who don’t have very many friends. As other lonely classmates slowly join their little club, they’ll try to learn how to build friendships through cooking together, playing games, and other group activities. But will this group of relationship-challenged misfits really be able to get along?
“No you don’t”
“My hair is blonde. Your arguments are invalid.”
Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai literal translation “I don’t have many friends” light novel Japanese written by Hirasaka Yomi and illustrated by Buriki. What lead me here was my nose for seeking up potential Harem animes. And the Harem God smiled upon me for thy wish came true. However I would suggest the author change the title of this anime to “I Have Lots of Potential Candidates for my Harem” instead.
Insert cliched harem anime story! An unpopular guy Kodak Hasegawa (as everyone know, harem law #69 states that every unpopular male lead have a 75% chance of forming a harem) starts a club for unpopular people like himself in his Catholic School. Let’s refer this as the “Forever Alone” Club. I remember forming one of these back in my high school days. Unfortunately for me, only male members joined (Because my school was full with weird guys not girls. God, we even play Monster Hunter on our PSPs all day) Luckily for Kodak Hasegawa, weird and eccentric female members started joining his club thus begin directing his path towards “The Way of the Harem” But MAL refuses to acknowledge this in the “genre” database.. RAGE.
Produced by AIC Build, the same people who brought you Oreimo and choco banana (ok I was kidding about the choco banana). Thus explains the similarity in their animation style. Character designs are exceptional. Knowing Watanabe Yoshihiro was in charge. He was responsible for character designs and animation for notable animes such as Minami-ke and my other all time favourite harem anime, Sora no Otoshimono. I can’t comment much on sound yet because I have yet to hear other BGM and OSTs but the ending theme is about friendship! Thats what this anime is about? Friendzoning all the girls? I hope not.. I already have my full dose of “friendship” theme from the “My little Pony” show.
Not much had been introduced about the characters but nevertheless I shall try my best to assumely review them.
The protagonist, Mr-so-called-unpopular. He is the product of you know those “videos” you watch in your room… alone… where a japanese girl have unprotected copulation with an American. Yep. Not that I watch those things I just know about it… *whistles*. He has blond hair thus japanese culture always associate them with delinquents.
From the tone of her voice, we can expect her to be an egoistic lady with a sadistic nature. Can’t get along with Kashiwazaki Sena and forms a huge rivalry with her. I shall note her down as Tsundere.
Nicknamed “Meat” by Yozora Mikazuki. She comes from a rich family. (Ahh every harem need a rich spoiled brat) She joined the club because she hate ordinary-ness. (Reminds you of another female lead doesn’t it?) Perhaps another Tsundere here…
Younger sister in the harem?! I thought whats-his-name already outlawed incest? Ah well, no skin off my back. Not much is revealed about her but she seems to have a dark persona
A maid! Now we’re back on track! Apparent she wants to be more muscular and more manly. Thus she became a disciple of Kodak since he has an image of a deliquent. Trust me. Only Kogarashi from Kamen no Maid Guy is able to pull of the whole “Manly even in Maid outfit” routine. Bless his soul wherever he is.
Glasses girl and Mad Scientist. Yep, nuff said.
The loli of the harem! Apparently she is only 10 but is a professor and the club advisor. Oh Japan, you never cease to amaze me.
Overall, this OVA left me a significant impact on me. Yep I was expecting a cliched harem opening and I got that at first. But then it all changed. You know what they say, “Nothing is too good to be true.” Comedy wise this is more of the “guy gets tortured by female cast” which became really popular recently. Potential of being a harem anime? Yes most definitely. Potential of deviating from the typical RomXCom scenario. Perhaps not.
And remember, “My hair is blonde. Your arguments are invalid.”
The art of this anime has similar resemblance with another anime “Denpa Onna to Seishin Otoko,” So don’t be surprise if you’ll be seeing Meme (from “Denpa Onna to Seishin Otoko”) being a high school girl who’s name is Yoaora, so for this part I’ll give it a “Mediocre” 5.
As for the sound, I’d say I like both the opening and closing theme, but, it’s possible that the themes may not be the same ones when the up coming anime starts on October, still I give it a “Good” score number 7.
Charcters; there may be some info out there that details the characters of this anime, but it is still too early to make any assumptions as to their characteristics all we know are the role that these characters will be playing and who are they?
Hasegawa Kodoka – A transfer student who is a hybrid Japanese, and the Mr. Nice guy in the up coming anime.
Kashiwazaki Sena- The Miss Popular around the campus and possibly a tsundere.
Mikazuki Yoaora – The rich lonely girl with a weird habit of talking to the air and it is possible that she and Sena will be at each others throats.
Hasegawa Kobato- Kodoka’s sister and may probably have a brother complex (we’ll know soon enough).
Kusunoki Yukimura- according to MAL’s info she a cross dressing maid, but to whom does he or she work for, we’ll have to wait until the showing of the OVA’s up coming anime.
Shiguma Rika – a genius with a thing for BL manga.
Takayama Maria- according to MAL’s info she the supervisor for the “Neighbor’s club,” REALLY?!
since those were the info we have I think a “Decent” 4 will do.
Enjoyment and overall- Fair number 7.
The OVA has somewhat given us as what to expect for this OVA’s up coming anime, as always it’s either we’ll enjoy it or we might dropped it. Let just wait and see as to how this OVA’s up coming anime will fare up.
28: Asobi ni Iku yo!: Asobi ni Oide
English: Cat Planet Cuties: Come Drop By
Japanese: あそびにいくヨ! あそびにおいで
MAL Score: 6.76
Catian Eris is now on a mission to learn about Earth games and how they are played, but she seems to think that bets have to be placed every time. And while some bets are material items, eventually the Catians learn about betting items of clothing…
That Spoon full of service? Well… I could tell its the same spoon God uses to eat his frosted flakes because it was fucking huge and the service was epic.
Art : 9
Enjoyment: (Full Female Cast)(Strip Games) + 2(Nipple) to the square root of uncensored = one happy motherfucking viewer = Simplified to → You get my point…
As much as I enjoyed, service isn’t everything, but extremely high to what I usually give OVAs.
Asobi ni Iku yo! Asobi ni Oide is an OVA with a lot going on. It’s all centered around a game. This game happens to be of the Earthly variety, and is played by the humans and an unknown alien race called the Catians, which are freaking epic neko girls. They all play the Earth-based game for prizes such as embarrassing DVD’s of the girls, figurines, and so on. The plot is very great, and I was never confused one bit.
The art style in this was great, but was a bit lacking. I wish the game was a little better drawn, and the girls’ breasts had better detailing done on them. Other than that, character design and just about everything else look good.
The sound was awesome! The voice acting was top-notch, and each character sounded realistic. Music and sound effects were killer, with smooth, easy listening music, and silly sound effects when the characters do something so wacky.
I had a hard time following the characters, but I think that’s because I never saw the original show. I won’t reduce too many points, as that’s my fault. However, from what I can gather, the humans are normal and the Catians want to play the Earth-style game to see the differences between their games and Earth’s games. On top of that, since the Catians are epic catgirls, I think that everything is fine.
I enjoyed this a lot. It had a great plot, a good moral, and a feeling of inspiration that can only be matched by Gurren Lagann.
THE SEVENTH ORDINANCE
We, the members of the Underside of Kitten Paw, have added a new ordinance, based on this new video footage, regarding our Goddess. By adding this ordinance, we not only further strength our relationship with the Catians, but also grow closer with our Goddess and Savior, Eris. The new ordinance goes as followed:
7) Thou Shalt Include a Strip Game, Amongst Other Games
– It appears that everyone knows that one of Earth’s most popular games are ‘Strip games’. The members of the Catian mothership played ‘Strip Mahjong’, ‘Strip Poker’, and ‘Strip Rock-Paper-Scissors’. And almost every single member becomes nude once, showing off their lovely breasts! Now, our ’so-called’ villain is playing chess against Matrey, her personal assist-a-roid. But, what’s this, she is losing and stripping! So, I guess she is playing ‘Strip Chess’. And, now, our Goddess and her friends are playing various games, such as ‘Bullshit!’, ‘Monopoly’, ‘Twister’, and finally, ‘Strip Rock-Paper-Scissors’. Our protagonist, Kio Kakazu, wins by blind luck, literally, and strips everyone naked. Based on our Goddess’ and her friends’ behaviors, it would seem that playing ‘Strip games’ further strengths one’s relationship amongst friends and colleagues. It’s decree that everyone should include one ‘Strip game’, so to further develop one’s bond with another person.
By following this new ordinance, we hope that our relationship with Catians continues rises. We further hope that one day, we may obtain a power to grow cat ears and cat tails. And, we hope that our Goddess continues to grace us with her presences.
All Hail Our Goddess!
All Hail Eris!
All Hail Eris!
27: Megazone 23
English: Megazone 23
MAL Score: 6.79
Shougo Yahagi is a young motorcycle enthusiast living in a world of hot bikes, hard rock, and J-pop idols. The general populace go about their lives in peace, under the watchful eyes of a computer program in the guise of pop idol sensation Eve, unbeknownst to them. Shougo himself is mostly concerned with riding his motorcycle and picking up beautiful women like Yui Takanaka, who aspires to be a dancer.
Shougo’s life suddenly changes when his friend, Shinji Nakagawa, shows him a top-secret project: the “Garland,” an advanced motorcycle that can transform into a robot. Ambushed by the military, Shougo hijacks the Garland and escapes into the city. Evading the military with the help of Yui and her friends, he gradually discovers that their idyllic society is only an illusion.
The first part is outstanding. As to be expected from Noboru Ishiguro. The story has some incredible twists, the art is top notch and there’s plenty of great 80s j-pop. I’d give this part a 9/10 and was really looking forward to what happened in the next episode.
So you can imagine the disappointment when in the second part, everything was entirely different. The characters do not even look remotely similar to how they do in part one and the conclusion feels rather lackluster in comparison to the introduction. The storytelling and art is by no means bad, but is clearly not to the same standard.
Part three has even fewer similarities; there is an entirely new cast and setting, and only has passing reference to the first two parts. This is more of a sequel than part of the same story. By this point it’s really no different from any of the other sci-fi OVAs out there.
The one thing that’s consistently great is the music. 80s and 90s J-pop, yes please.
In short, watch part one, but prepare to have the quality drop considerably by the time you reach the end (if you even get that far).
When i originally saw the trailer for Megazone 23 on a random anime dvd, i couldnt help but to be fascinated by the fast pace and 80’s soundtrack that i was watching, and i knew i had to get this anime.
As a major fan of old school anime, i ordered the Megazone 23 collection with all the aspirations of old school anime glory, and i must admit, it took me for a ride that ill never forget. With this review i hope to give my own opinions and insight on what has currently become one of my favorite anime titles – Megazone 23.
As for story , Megazone 23 is quite original. I have a large anime collection, and in all my years of watching anime have i never watched anything with a story like this one. its an original piece of work that has managed to become nostalgic and stay fresh at the same time, and it also manages to merge quite a few genres together, such as – mecha, romance,action,sci-fi, and even post apocalyptica. Megazone 23 has something for everyone thats for sure.
When it comes to the Art Department, Each part of the Megazone 23 collection has its own style. Part 1 offers a strictly old school style which could only be described as “80’s animation”. Part 2 is also animated in a late 1980’s animation style, but it is slightly different and more detailed than Part 1. Parts 3 & 4 are animated in the mid 1990’s animation style, with cleaner animation with a more modern look. Though each Part is animated in their own different style, i didnt find it taking anything away from my viewing pleasure, Each Part had its story to tell and i greatly enjoyed the series despite the animation changes.
The sound is basically one of the things that got me hooked on Megazone 23. i really enjoyed the 80’s style and music that Parts 1 & 2 were infused with. The look and sound of everything fit together really well and made it a great experience altogether, whether it was 80’s rock, or pop, or sythesizers. As for sound effects, i felt they were done quite well too, especially with the vehicles (motorcycles). I bought the ADV dvd collection, so thats the only version ive watched, and i must say that the dubbing was done really good in my own opinion.
As i watched Megazone 23, i really found myself liking some of the characters, especially Eve and Shogo. The music they used with the character Eve basically made her an instant legend when it comes to anime Idols, right up there with Macross and everything, and it is certainly for good reason. Shogo was a pretty cool character too. in Part 1 he was stubborn and hot headed, but as Part 2 rolls around you can tell he has matured a bit. Yui changes a bit fom Part 1 to Part 2 as well, and Part 2 introduces alot more minor characters that are pretty cool too. all in all, the characters of Megazxone 23 in a whole are pretty memorable 🙂
As a whole, I really found myself enjoying each and every Part of the Megazone OVA. I liked the originality of its story, the old school 80’s style presentation of music and animation, and the characters were interesting and kept the series fun to watch. Although i didnt mind the animation changes, i know everyone may not care too much for them, but if you can look past those changes and focus onthe story, then im sure youll enjoy Megazone 23 just as much as i did. If you are looking for an anime that is original and one of a kind, then Megazone 23 has everything you could possibly ask for 🙂
Megazone 23 is a very original anime with a setting that will enthrall the viewer into the story, characters, and even the representation of the era it was made in. Yes, this is incredibly 80’s. Part 1 by Noboru Ishiguro is absolutely outstanding. There are so many similarities to the art design and music of the Macross series, and the plot development is top notch. Not surprising that this show eventually became a movie, “Robotech: The Untold Story.” Part 1 focuses on a biker name Shogo and his run-in with a top-secret government weapon called Bahamut. He learns more and more about what the government is, what they want, and how it affects not only him but everybody in the city in which he lives in. Not to mention the interaction with the cities pop sensation named “Eve” and his eventual love interest Yui. Art, music, plot; this first part to the OVA series is top notch.
Now, due to the times and certain decisions being made, a change in essentially everything to series happened going forward in parts 2,3, and 4. A change in staff, lower quality, even the way the characters are drawn all changed. For example, Yui changed from Macross style and green hair to Sue with short brown hair and a generic character design. Basically, the entire OVA series goes downhill incredibly fast. It is a complete dumpster dive after how great part 1 was. Part 3 and 4 goes even further with it being a completely different setting and time period. The same lowered quality and generic character designs are shown again. This time, even the music, which was Megazone’s last saving grace, is pretty much gone.
Sadly, the series falls way short on a setting and plot with so much potential that takes the viewer into the universe of Megazone. If only the concurrent parts after the way the series began were anything remotely similar to Part 1; Megazone 23 could have been something on the scale of a Gundam or a Macross. Unfortunately, the series as a whole is executed horribly. Watch Part 1 and pretend it was the only part made.
26: Tenchi Muyou!: Galaxy Police Mihoshi Space Adventure
Japanese: 天地無用! 番外篇 宇宙刑事[ギャラクシーポリス]美星 銀河大冒険[スペースアドベンチャー]
MAL Score: 6.80
On a sunny day, Mihoshi Kuramitsu decides to take a peaceful nap while everyone else does chores. Sick of Mihoshi’s laziness, Aeka Jurai Masaki questions her capability as a Galaxy Police Officer. Her pride wounded, Mihoshi decides to prove that she is a skilled first class detective by telling the story of how she and her partner, Kiyone Makibi, put a stop to a series of thefts involving Ultra Energy Matter.
To make it more fun, Mihoshi inserts Tenchi Masaki and the others into her story. However, her fantastical tale may just demonstrate her lack of a grip on reality rather than showcase her accomplishment as a talented officer.
25: Candy Boy Episode: EX01 – Mirai Yohouzu
Japanese: Candy boy episode: EX01 「ミライヨホウズ」
MAL Score: 6.81
A dvd only prequel to the Candy Boy series. Twin sisters, Yukino and Kanade Sakurai, move to a new school in the big city of Tokyo but not everything is quite like they expected.
It’s a very short serie that can be watched in less than 10 mins, literally :P. It is very enjoyable for how brief it is. I recommend everyone to watch this and it’s sequel.
This is Candy Boy at the *very beginning* of the entire series. It features both MCs Kanade and Yukino in their time exploring the area they reside in Tokyo and going over a little about the new life they will soon take on. For the most part, it functions as an average s.o.l should so I would use that as a means of determining whether or not you want to watch this. I personally found it good at that.
The art is high quality for its time, looks very good. OST isn’t particularly memorable here.
I watched this in release order, and it didn’t particularly hinder my experience as I watched episode 0 (the chronological sequel) before this. But I’d say watch it in chronological order as it paves a nice path for the series, but really you choose which way you want to go with this.
24: El Hazard 2: The Magnificent World
Japanese: 神秘の世界 エルハザード 第2期
MAL Score: 6.84
Continuing the from OVAs; When Fujisawa, suffering from cold feet, leaves Miz at the altar, an enraged Priestess drafts Makoto and friends to go find him. In the couse of locating the hapless (and gutless) teacher, they find another Ifurita. Meanwhile Jinnai and Diva searching for a new Bugrom homeland stumble upon another yet another Demon God, the impish Kalia. However, unlike Ifurita she has a mind, and a mission, of her own…
I enjoyed the first OVA, it’s nothing spectacular but it’s full of charm and adventure. It’s fun and entertaining with a charismatic cast of characters. Unfortunately, the second OVA missed the mark on those things almost completely. It’s not awful, it’s just a non-event. It’s bland and charmless with lazy writing, which is disappointing because the sequel has potential to be great if only they’d put a bit more effort into continuing the actual story.
It’s hard not to compare it to the first OVA and it just suffers by comparison in almost every regard (by the way, I’m assuming that if you’re reading this then you’ve seen the first one – if not, why are you reading a review of the sequel?). This felt like a side story not a sequel, something harmless and frivolous to watch but in no way had enough stakes or plot for a full OVA.
I was invested in the plot of the first series. It has a coherent plan and focused goals and antagonists. It has a build up and a sense of adventure. This series really just meandered around as if the writers were lost. I perhaps suspect they thought the cast and the comedy would be enough of a selling point for this series and they’re just not. They leaned into the comedy and it’s just not that funny. The comedy skits are fun when it’s an aside to the actual adventure story but when it’s the bulk of what’s happening, you’re just left thinking – this isn’t that funny and it needs to be.
In the last OVA, MAL had the nerve to call it a romance but this anime, they really made up for the lack in the previous series. This is mostly a rom-com but unfortunately it’s not a good one. The mind-boggling thing is that this no longer has the romance tag!? Also, this has somehow turned into a harem. Makoto basically somehow has three women lusting after him by the end.
Now if you need a reminder, the first series was largely a fantasy adventure. The first episode of this OVA is about a jilted bride looking for her runaway husband, which is a far cry from the war and potential apocalypse they faced in the previous series. Sure things amp up a bit by the third episode but not in any way that you would care about. It just takes too much time to get going. In the first series, it keyed in to the main plot from the get-go and it allowed the main content of the OVA to be focused on that. This doesn’t really get started till well over halfway through the run time.
My first problem with how this OVA handles characters is that I hated the way they included “Ifurita”. It just seemed like a cheap way to sort of include her but not have to explain how she got back to El Hazard. It’s lazy and feels inconsequential by the end. They really wanted that character design to make an appearance but couldn’t be bothered to think about a way to get her back from Earth. It was just a bit disappointing because I was hoping to see more of her in this series and see the relationship between Makoto and her develop but instead they teased it then took the possibility away. Lame. Also, the new incarnation was milquetoast.
Perhaps the biggest problem with this OVA is Kalia – she’s such a bland villain. Such poor reasoning or explanation is given to the villain’s motives – I mean, she doesn’t really have any motives. I couldn’t even tell you why she’s doing this. There was a moment where I thought we were getting a back story and it just fell completely flat. She has no real character or anything remotely distinctive or interesting about her. It’s lazy writing and it’s a shame.
Jinnai was always played for laughs but they really have him as nothing but a fool in this – he might as well not be there. Believe it or not, there’s more maniacal laughter in this OVA than the last one – seemingly it’s the only consistent motif between the two series. Also, anyone watching this OVA will feel all the characters’ regret for saving the princess in the first season considering how unbelievably irritating she is in this – since when did she turn into a groping lesbian?
I sound like I hate the characters. I don’t. I actually do like this cast, they’re fun together. There’s some good camaraderie but with some people missing, the newly-added characters being somewhat annoying and a few of them having not that much to do (Nanami might as well not be there), it sort of took the fun out of it.
Art and animation took a bit of a nosedive this season. It’s distinctly more sloppy than last season. While the previous OVA wasn’t always top-notch quality art, it had some great moments that elevated it – this just seems basic. Although some of the sequences using their magic I actually thought improved. It was cool to see their powers take on manifestations of titans, dragons etc. but it’s nothing to shout about and is barely utilised.
HOW COULD IT HAVE BEEN BETTER?
I think what makes this OVA frustrating is there are so many things that were set up in the first OVA that could have been used as a natural jumping off point for the second series and that’s what I was expecting. By the end of the first series it leaves us with several cliff-hanger questions: What happened with the Phantom people? Will Ifurita get back to El Hazard? Will Makoto and his friends get back to Earth? Yet, not a single one of those questions is answered is this. I don’t get why they wouldn’t just build a story around one of these questions.
Personally, I think it would’ve been so much better if this season had been about taking on the Phantom people as the main villains – I really don’t know why they didn’t. They weren’t the main focus in the previous story (in fact, we barely found anything out about them) but they had interesting powers and sort of just disappeared at the end so I thought they were primed for a comeback. The series could have explored the lands underground where they live, given more detail on their backstory and how they ended up in El Hazard etc. and it would have made a much more interesting adventure that both tied in to the previous series and gave the viewer something new to see.
So, would I recommend it? Well, it depends what you liked about the first one. If you like the sense of fantasy, adventure and seeing a colourful cast of characters band together in a common goal to prevent factions from destroying the world…then don’t watch this. This has basically none of that or certainly not done with any finesse. If you loved the daft comedy moments and didn’t really care about a good plot or villains then this might be made just for you.
It’s not awful by any means but it’s not good either. It’s probably best just to enjoy the first season for what it is and not bother continuing with it unless you found the first season hilarious and are dying to see these characters prat around while a vague story continues in the background.
Sadly, it had a lot of potential but it’s a disappointing sequel. It’s really not worth your time.
El Hazard OVA 1 ≠ El Hazard OVA 2
I only could stand one episode, but that was enough to make this conclusion. I was really disappointed to see another failed sequel which I wish was never made. Why? OK, let’s dig deeper.
First, OVA 2 focuses TOO MUCH on character relationships, which are so typical that while I was watching I wondered whether it’s really the sequel of El Hazard or some mainstream harem anime! And there follows the second complaint – the characters. What happened with their behaviors? Why Mr.Fujisawa is a chicken? Why Fatora is a perverted crosdresser? Miz? What’s up with her? And third thing… production quality. Art work is definitely worse (excluding the backrounds, which seem to be copied from OVA 1), and I feel seiyu were slacking. However, let’s talk about the story. Well, the magic feeling of an unknown world is no more, OVA 2 starts where OVA 1 ends. And there’s not really much new to see, we already know everything – Eye Of God, Priestesses, princesses… No intrigue whatsoever.
Before I finish, I’d like to add – if you’re new to El Hazard, start with OVA 1 and forget OVA 2 even exists.
And so, I finish my ‘review’ and put “El Hazard 2: The Magnificent World” to “Dropped” with a score of 5. Sad story, but it’s over.
23: Anata dake Konbanwa
English: Tonight, Only Just For You
MAL Score: 6.86
Shougo has just arrived town after he was ordered to do so since his grandfather has just died, her parents are busy with work so they told him to go first. Shougo will be the one to inherit all family assets. Shougo arrives at the residence that will be his new home and he receives a great welcome by the beautiful maid Youko-san. A strange event happens at night, he dreams with someone but cannot really tell who it is, all he knows is that her face looks familiar… Next day he goes to his new school, her fiancé Ayano introduces to him telling him that it was something their parents decided on their own and that she has not accepted him yet, Shougo is in shock since he didn’t know about this and many people are now jealous and angry at him since Ayano is the school’s idol. Not everything is bad as he has a very warm welcome by a voluptuous beautiful teacher.
Later a ghost appears before him, is the girl he saw in his dream last night, what does this means? All Shougo knows is that he has seen that girl before but where?
Story is really good, light, with some romance, some funny comedy stuff and up and there some Drama aspects.
Little bit of Spoiler, the MC inherits an estate from his Grandpa, little does he know, Grandpa made preparations for him to have a Harem. So when the MC just arrives the fun starts with a young and gorgeous House maid, who has a crush on him, since the Grandpa showed her pics of MC as a child, and she fell for him. Later we have a sexy MILF, who is the nurse of the School and the next day her little sister, who is considered the most cutest freshman in the High School, little do we know, that those sister share a mysterious and funny secret, well you have to watch to find out. Of course i am not done yet, remember, five episodes to enjoy, means two more to go…
Then we have a beautiful childhood friend, whom MC promised to marry, when he was still a child.
And the mysterious entity at the house, whom the MC proposed as a child.
So five episodes of Good story, great design and good sound.
The Characters are pretty good, it is a light story, so the characters do not go through a complex development or something similar, so in this case they are great.
As for Enjoyment it is 10 out 10, really.
So overall it is a Masterpiece of a Hentai.
I recommend it to all. If you are a Fan of Hentai, this is perfect for you, it will give you something Light to enjoy. And it is not the usual recent NTR, Rape and other Horrible things stuff.
If you are not a fan of Hentai, still this is perfect for you, cause it is light, interesting and nicely enjoyable Hentai.
Genre: comedy,harem, romance, yuri
keeps you on edge. Predicting events is not easy. Ending is acceptable. Humor used is nice. There was a lovely bonus in the credits. Sure it wasn’t hentai but plot wise amusing. It was nice to have all these characters in the show. However, interactions were fairly simple. Mostly one on one based. Kind of wasting opportunities with a harem.
Character were well drawn. There was one minor invisible job error. I understand ‘maintenance’ is being applied but the ‘pipe’ should be there right(in reference to the final episode)?
Each character’s background was nicely done. I think their idea of devoting each episode mainly to a specific character was a good choice.
While we don’t have crazy sex moves or comedic serial killer it will still keep you interested and may cause some interesting.. chaffing.
Animation is incredibly mediocre but the good thing is that it doesn’t look bad in any way either. Though there was one sex scene where they reused the same movements a bit too much. The music used was average too. They were well timed & not too distracting during sex scenes but not memorable as a whole.
The main focus on the characters for this season is more on Yoko & the Mizuchi sisters though Ayane & Reiko were introduced too. Again, since this is hentai more time is spent on having sex with the heroines instead of getting to know them better.
I find that the direction was quite poorly executed. There were many times where the characters were never shown finishing the deed and jumps straight to the next scene. During those scenes itself they tend to focus on other characters a little too much instead of those doing it. Next, using comic relief at the same time as some of the sex scenes just left me feeling more put off instead of being aroused. Bad directing aside, the scenes themselves when shown without lame jokes are still satisfying enough.
Overall, don’t expect anything much from the story or the series itself. This is a show worth considering if you want an average lighthearted hentai without anything hardcore to pass the time. If you’re looking for something with a little more substance then look elsewhere as the mediocrity of it might disappoint you.
22: Kyuuketsuhime Miyu
English: Vampire Princess Miyu
MAL Score: 6.99
A quiet gothic horror story about a vampire girl, Miyu, whose destiny it is to hunt down murderous demons known as Shinma and return them to their land of origin, the Dark. Miyu is pursued by the Spiritualist Himiko, determined to find out who Miyu is and to stop her from sucking the life blood from helpless humans. Each of the four episodes chronicle one of Miyu’s encounters with a Shinma and the humans that it is affecting, from the perspective of Himiko’s pursuit of Miyu.
The OVA’s strength is that the stories are much more interesting than most of the ones in the TV series. There are only 4 episodes and each is unique. The weakness is it tends to be like X-Files, here is the mystery of the week and the shinma/monster of the week. It gets predictably boring after a while, but luckily the short 4 episode length managed to keep it from being too boring or predictable. If there were more background or an overarching plot it would have scored higher.
Yet, like with all late 80’s shows, I just love the “rough” look of everything. The animation is nothing short of very well down. The mysterious demons and environments are incredibly detailed and add a very great atmosphere. The action sequences, while very few, definetly keep you enthralled. As for the characters themselves, there was a good number of development going on. It delved into all of the main character’s back stories without feeling incredibly forced and overdone. It gave a very good insight on each of the three involved. Despite all of this, the very short length, awful voice acting, and very formulaic episodes are what makes it just satisfactory, rather than anything noteworthy. However, the fact that this short little OVA will never see the light of day for most people, it is really worth your time to check out, as it won’t take anymore than 2 hours. A very unique and awesome approach to vampire storylines and great use of visuals and atmosphere.
21: Armitage III
English: Armitage III
Japanese: アミテージ ザ サード
MAL Score: 7.03
The year is 2046. Detective Ross Sylibus is transferred to Mars when a country singer on her flight is murdered. Making matters more complicated is that the singer is a “Third”—a robot that looks and feels like a human. Sylibus is partnered with Armitage—a beautiful female cop with a bad attitude. As they investigate the murder of the singer and other women on Mars, they uncover a conspiracy that can have them both killed by the Martian government.
Now, given the time of it’s release, much of the hype of that moment centred around the forthcoming Ghost in the Shell, set to be released later that year. Because of this, Armitage III has been somewhat left by the wayside when it comes to mid 90s anime, especially given the huge marketing campaign devoted to GitS. This irony is that of the two major cyberpunk releases of 1995, Armitage III just pips GitS as being the best of that year.
The story is set in the year 2046 in the city of Saint Lowell, on the planet Mars. Earth has become overpopulated, and Mars has subsequently been terraformed to deal with this issue. Humanity was aided in the terraforming process by the first generation of androids, and by the time of the story the second generation of androids had become widely used for service and pleasure purposes. Unfortunately, Mars has been suffering from declining birthrates, and whilst the planet is autonmous from Earth, this fact is one of the main drivers for the story.
The plot is well thought out on the whole (barring a few inconsistencies), and the pacing is very good. There is a nice mixture of action and intrigue, as well as a dollop of political machinations (nowhere near as much as GitS though). The story does suffer from its flaws, however the premise is one that is just as plausible as GitS and, given the advances in medical science since 1995, may prove far more “real”. The biggest irony is that both Armitage III and GitS ask the question “What is life?”, but approach the answer from different angles.
The animation is very well done on the whole. AIC, who are also responsible for AD Police Files, Bubblegum Crisis and Now & Then, Here & There, have done a great job animating the show, however there are some moments when the animation loses its polish. The backgrounds are nicely drawn and are generally atmospheric, but they lack the detail that is one of the hallmarks of GitS.
One of my biggest problems with this series was the design of Naomi Armitage. The other characters were quite well done on the whole, however I initially had difficulty taking the show seriously given that her outfit seems more appropriate for a dominatrix than a police officer. It may be that the designers wanted to emphasise that Naomi is different from other humans by garbing her in very little, however they seem to have forgotten about the utility of clothing in their approach.
The sound is generally very good throught the OVA. The music is very much of the time, so lots of beats are prevalent in many of the actions scenes. The sound effects are well handled on the whole, however there are moments when the sound and music can clash quite badly.
As far as characters go, Ross Syllabus is very much a stereotype – an honorable and decent man who unfortunately hates robots and androids (although he has his reasons for this, and the series tries to explain them to a degree).
Naomi Armitage, on the other hand, is very much a tomboy. Brash, cocky, somewhat arrogant, and very often wilful, she seems to be just another normal, albeit unusually dressed, human being. It’s not until the last two episodes that we begin to see more of her true character, however this is still not enough to ensure that the audience can relate to, or sympathise, with her.
Aside from these two, there are sundry other characters who play their part in the OVA, the chief one being René D’anclaude – a man who has been targetting and murdering specific women on MARS.
Although I had some difficulty at first, I thoroughly enjoyed this series and it’s sequels. The balanced mixture of action and drama could have been improved, as could the characters, however that would have needed at least 12 episodes to achieve.
There’s a definite appeal to the show because of its scripting and unusual (for anime that is), premise. As it’s only a four part OVA, there isn’t really any time for any real development ofthe characters or the plot, however this is purely a perceptional issue, and one that I can ignore in favour of being entertained.
With inspiration drawn from many sources, like I, Robot by Isaac Asimov and Neuromancer by William Gibson, this OVA is one of the reasons why GitS became so popular here in west. Even by todays standards the story holds up well, whilst much of the artworks bright and cheery palette belies the story’s much darker plot.
Who says cyberpunk is dead?
Art\animation – I’m not quite sure who did the character designs for this show but sometimes it felt like it was done by two different people. The show is not entirely consistent with its style so some main characters fit this archetype of 90s fashion with sci-fi elements, particularly strong on the titular Armitage but a lot of side characters kind of dress like normal people. Same with world design, even though there’s a lot of future elements like floating city blocks, abundance of neon signs and such there are also pretty normal looking bars and offices so I’m not sure if there was one clear vision of what the world of Armitage should look like. If there was a clear distinction between what’s futuristic and advanced and what’s old and decrepit then it would contribute something to world building and atmosphere but as is it just feels like another part of the show that creators didn’t much care about. Also even though Armitage looks solid for overwhelming majority of the run it also has some moments where characters looks so out of proportions that it hurts to look at.
As far as animation goes it’s about as good as you’d expect from a 90s OVA, lots of detail, pretty fluid too but it lacks flare and style to be really memorable. So, it’s not exactly bad but without proper direction it won’t be impressing anyone. To be a single action scene from Mezzo DSA overshadows all the “sakuga” moments in Armitage because of this.
Direction – this is where I want to kind of continue talking about the art while also bringing up music and some of the story though this will be spoiler free.
The direction is probably the biggest flaw in this OVA, as I mentioned in the beginning, I don’t think there’s much in terms of plot that keeps this from being an entertaining sci-fi action OVA but all of the potential is squandered thanks to bad direction. First of all the pacing is too slow, even action scenes feel dull when the director and editor don’t care to depict urgency, intensity or danger involved. It’s horribly mundane and unexciting and music is only making it worse. While on its own it’s not necessarily bad, when paired with scenes where it’s used I felt like someone just looked at the scenes and thought it’s getting too quiet so they just randomly slapped the first bleep bloop track they could find. It doesn’t fit the mood or action so what’s the point? My next issue with direction is editing, I started paying more attention to it towards the end where the flaws became too bad to go on unnoticed and sometimes the choices made were flat out baffling. Like in episode 3 I think there’s a relatively important action scene with higher stakes than most other fights prior but we cut away from it to boring investigation work, just why? Other time the faults were less egregious but there’s still plenty of amateurish cuts that disrupt the flow of action as well as spacial continuity. The last complaint is that it’s just not interesting to look at. There are too many shots with boring framing that give you nothing to look yet they linger on as if you’re shown something important. One shot stood especially stood to me when it was like a 2 or 3 seconds long still shot of an almost completely brown back alley with 5 inches of some neon sign in the upper left corner. That scene was so dead and boring that it took me out of the show. It might sound like a nitpicks but I’m only mentioning it cause it’s bad and it’s common so stuff like that builds up.
Writing – no surprises here cause pretty much all you need to know how this is gonna go is in the synopsis already. The show doesn’t get too deep and it’s better for it cause otherwise they’d be encroaching on the territory that’s already been covered by far better written sci-fi classics like Blade Runner and Ghost in the Shell. The script is kind of cheesy and very much in your face at times but I don’t think the show pretended to be more than it is and wrapped it all up in the end, can’t say it was entirely satisfying but when you got a show that can’t offer and interesting story, doing as little to create more problems is fine.
Fun factor – this is the part where I’m supposed to justify why I still gave it a 5 cause so far it seems like a bunch of negatives and not really anything to justify it. No matter how underwhelming the execution is I think it still works as a cheese little sci-fi romp that can be a fine casual watch. It’s not good but it’s not offensively bad either so if it peaked your interest in one way or another it’s worth to have a go at it.
In conclusion, Armitage III is awesome. Any SF/cyberpunk anime lover should see this. Great visuals, great OST and a memorable main character bring this anime a big well deserved 10.
English: Photon: The Idiot Adventures
MAL Score: 7.05
Photon Earth is a young and gentle boy with superhuman strength and “Baka” (meaning “idiot” in Japanese) scribbled on his forehead (apparently by his troublemaking friend Aun Freya). One day, he finds himself engaged to the beautiful fugitive pilot Keyne Acqua after writing “baka” on her forehead. And that’s the least of his worries as he must protect both Aun and Keyne from the evil Papacharino, who seeks to steal the secrets of “Aho” (another word for idiot) energy from Keyne’s grandfather’s ship.
Photon is probably the strangest main character I've ever seen in an anime. He's typically not the type of guy you would want as your main character. He's cute and has some amazing abilities, but he's borderline mentally retarded. Despite all of his amazing super powers Photon just never stood out as the main character to me. In my opinion that title should go to Keyne Acqua, as she's the real standout character in the series. But enough debating who gets to bask in the glory of the spotlight, back to the issue at hand; the anime. Since I haven't made myself very clear on how I feel about this anime thus far, let me just say I liked it a lot more than I thought I would. I read some reviews on it and saw some screenshots before watching it, and it just didn't really catch my attention, but after watching the first episode I realized it's actually quite entertaining. Now this doesn't mean it's something I would find the time to watch again, but it is certainly something I would recommend to a friend. It's a fairly simple and straight forward series with not too many surprises or confusing plot twists, but I guess this is a given when a series is only six episodes long.
One thing I took notice to is how Photon suffers from the same thing Abenobashi suffers from. At times it tries to be a drama and a comedy all at once, and something about it just didn't agree with me. See, I'm a pretty picky guy when it comes to genre mixing, and comedy and drama are two genres that can't be mixed unless there are certain conditions for it. Photon does not meet these conditions. No anime where characters can survive un-survivable situations and come back without a scratch on them like Wiley Coyote can have a serious plot arc taken seriously, at least not in my opinion. I don't care if it's the last episode, when an anime aims for something like silly comedy it should just stick to it and not look back. One other thing that bothered me a little bit is Keybe's engagement to Photon. It's quite comical how they got engaged (by having 'Idiot' on each others foreheads), but it's a little hard to stomach at times. Now I'm not too sure how old either of the two characters are, but Photon looks no older than eleven or twelve. It's a little bit creepy to see an older woman acting like the wife of a little boy, but I guess I have seen stranger things in animes.
Another drawback in the series is the disappointing anticlimactic ending. It all happens far too quickly and it really manages to take you out of the experience. If you weren't sure how you felt about the series up until that point I'm sure you'll be shaking your head in disgust once it ends. I really hate to sound like I didn't enjoy this anime, because like I said above I did actually enjoy it a lot more than I thought I would, but I can't help but point out the problems that this anime has. It's not a bad anime by any means, and with only six episodes it won't take up much of your time to view it, but you can't forget the fact that Photon is nearly ten years old. Since Photon's release there have been hundreds of animes similar to it that arguably do everything Photon does better. When you have that many years of comedy/adventure to choose from I see little reason to go out of your way to watch Photon. Go check out Magical Shopping Arcade: Abenobashi, KO Beast, or even Excel Saga instead. But if you really want to see Photon I won't stop you. Like I said, it's not a bad anime and I'd recommend it. I'm just afraid it hasn't aged very well over the years.
My Score: 7.0
Version Watched: English Dub
Then add a couple of other stuff, and you get Photon! A hilariously funny and still epic story set in some kind of fantasy future.
Decent. The animation is not the best, but the character designs are great! Nice background details.
Great music, some kind of 80’s rock anthems which I like. Dope voice acting.
What seems like a down-to-earth story, albeit a science fiction one, at the beginning, soon turns out to be a great epic with several unexpected twists. Basically Photon accidently meets a girl out on a quest to find some kind of magical source. She is hunted by the galactic empire, and there you have the basis of it all.
Photon himself is an odd character. He is not clever, but very strong and utterly reliable. Not every anime boasts a main character of this retarded kind.
The girls travelling with him are fun; they constantly squibble over who Photon likes the most which creates some hilarious moments. Plus, Kyne is nice naked, too =)
The villain, Papacha, is the best character in this OVA. His plans to conquer the universe is constantly hindered by his own vanity and hornyness. This is how all antagonists should be! Plus, his cheerleader blobs add to the fun.
The side characters all have their place and help the story go forward. A solid set of fun characters, all in their own way.
This one has it all! Humour, epics, boobies… A must see if you ask me. Again and again…
The Ding Dong Song AMV:
Photon Earth is the main protagonist, he is extremely strong and fights using a quarterstaff made of black crystal. Has the word "baka" scribbled across his forehead by Aun in black ink as he was trying to lead her back home. He’s also able to withstand even the strongest blasts of Aho energy, even when it’s focused directly on him.
Aun Freya is Photon’s spoiled, high-strung, flighty childhood friend, she has the ability to create stasis fields. Humorously, she isn’t immune to her own stasis fields and can paradoxically trap herself (and everything around her) in a perpetual stasis field. Photon is the only one who is immune to her stasis field and also is the only one who can get her and keep her out of such messes.
Keyne Aqua is the rebel space pilot who came to Sandy Planet. Photon inadvertently married her when he wrote the word "baka" in katakana on her forehead in black marker.
Sir Papacharino Nanadan (or Papacha) is the bumbling antagonist. Also quite perverted when it comes to women. He has an obsession with Keyne and will stop at nothing to have her, but is always foiled by Photon’s intervening.
Princess Lashara Moon Known as the "Flower of the Galaxy" due to her beauty, she’s the daughter of the Galactic Emperor. She’s madly smitten with Papacha, but what she didn’t know is Papacha was really going to user her marriage to increase his harem.
Bulan The mysterious servant woman to Lashara, donning a strange looking hat (with feminine lips) and skintight purple attire. Usually moves by hovering on a golden platform and arrives with the princess to Sandy Planet to search out the "Singularity Point". However, she seems to know more about Lashara than she really lets on…
Pochis Papacha’s cute doll-like henchmen. Excluding Pochi #1 (who acts as a leader figure to the others), there are 28 of them, who refer to each other by their number. Though Papacha believes they’re all male, in truth, all the Pochis are really female.
More Reviews: http://teraalpha.com/STA/anime/modules/content/index.php?id=49
19: Riding Bean
Japanese: ライディング ビーン
MAL Score: 7.07
Bean Bandit and his partner Rally Vincent are couriers for hire – transporting clients and delivering goods in his custom sports car “Roadbuster” for a hefty price. But when they are hired to escort a kidnapped girl named Chelsea to her home, they don’t realize they’re being framed for kidnapping as their former clients Semmerling and Carrie plan their escape with Chelsea’s father and the ransom money.
The anime follows the exploits of the legendary courier "Bean Bandit" (a truly unfortunate moniker), and his partner Irene Vincent. They are framed for the kidnapping of a wealthy heiress, and are subsequently hunted by the police and various other parties.
The art and animation of Riding Bean is quite typical of it’s time, and bears a resemblance in places to the style of Lupin and Giant Robo. Riding Bean does however have something that sets it aside – the chases. Very few animes are able to convey the feeling of a high speed pursuit, and Riding Bean is amongst the best.
The sound is of a very good quality, and all the gearheads (a.k.a. car fanatics) out there will love the roar of the engines in the anime.
Riding Bean has some memorable characters, and ironically enough, the most memorable is not Bean Bandit. It is in fact, the cars. The Bean Bandit drives a customised sports car called "The Roadbuster", and if you’re like me (in other words, you like cars and racing), then you’ll understand me when I say I WANT THAT CAR! If you watch the show, you’ll understand why. I watched the showed at the young and impressionable age of 14, and The Roadbuster has been flitting around in my head ever since.
On the flip side, the police also have a car with which to hunt Bean Bandit – the Shelby Cobra GT500 **drools**
One other thing that needs mentioning is the character of Irene Vincent. I hope the name sounds familiar because Kenichi Sonoda later evolved her character into the famous Rally Vincent from Gunsmith Cats.
This is an enjoyable romp through the streets of Chicago, and the chases are truly memorable. If you’re a fan of classic anime, or better yet, a fan of Gunsmith Cats, then this is a must watch. If you like action and adrenalin, then Riding Bean is well worth viewing.
If you’re after romantic comedies, slice of life, etc, then this may not be to your tastes, but it never hurts to give it a try 🙂
Riding Bean is effectively a prequel (and dare I say – a pilot), of the legendary Gunsmith Cats, but it is just as enjoyable as GC. The chemistry between Bean Bandit and Irene Vincent is marvellous, and Inspector Percy is a hoot.
I found Riding Bean to be fast paced and highly enjoyable. The mixture of action and comedy is just about right for me, and I’ve rarely seen chases that match the ones in this show.
The car chases and stuff are fun. There’s even a mission impossible vibe with one aspect of the anime, which is great fun because it’s so ridiculous.
The plot is weak but it serves its purpose well. One link in it is especially difficult to go along with. But whatever. It’s 45 minutes, so I’m happy they cut out the crap and go straight to the good stuff – the action! Come to think of it, there’s one point at the end where a brand new baddie turns up declaring that they’re ‘desperate enough at this stage’ and its like, who the hell are you?
This anime gets ridiculous at the end. Roll with it. Understand that this was meant to be the pilot for a series, so presumably it had justifications for the direction it goes in. Sit back and enjoy. Seriously, just roll with it. It is what it is.
There’s a bit of partner abuse and lolita-ish stuff thrown in there. So, beware if these are things that put you off.
That aside, my recommendation is to watch this being aware that it sucks, but it very enjoyably sucks and actually on its own terms totally doesn’t suck. HAVE MUCH FUN.
(please do let me know yours feelings about this review via private message!)
“Riding Bean” is about cars. Cars, gangsters, and more cars, to be exact. All the action centralises around fast and furious car chases down the highway, or the main character (nicknamed “Bean Bandit”) doing some incredible things with his incredible sports car (named “Roadbuster” – you just know it’s a badass car because it has a name) to get him out of what seem to be impossibly tight spots. The action is very satisfying for the most part, but does get a little *too* over the top – by the end, this Bean Bandit guy was dishing out carnage comparable to Superman.
While “Riding Bean” is an action heavy OVA, the story is surprisingly clever, as it has more than its expected share of twists and turns that kept me guessing what was going to happen next. That said, the story is sometimes compromised by the OVA’s appetite for over the top action. For example, I’d hardly think people who are attempting to get hold of a captive from a car would resort to shooting the car with anti-tank guns in order to try and stop it.
On the animation side of things, “Riding Bean” does well with its great action sequences. However on the negative side, there’s something weird about some of the character designs that I can’t quite put my finger on. Perhaps it’s that ginormous chin sported by the Bean Bandit… I just can’t get over it.
I gathered from other reviews that “Riding Bean” is considered the prototype of “Gunsmith Cats”, as the two share the same creator. I can certainly see the resemblence in the style and setting (as well the fanservice), and in fact, the two both feature the character Irene “Rally” Vincent (something that I didn’t pick up at the time). The general consensus seems to be that “Gunsmith Cats” is superior to “Riding Bean”, but I have to disagree. I thought that “Gunsmith Cats” feels a bit stale, and does not really standing out in anyway. On the other hand, while there are times when it seems like “Riding Bean” doesn’t quite know what it wants to be (at one point I thought it was gonna go down the perverted path, but the moment passed without amounting to anything), it has a much more nifty plot and action that gets the adrenalin pumping a lot faster. Overall, it’s a well spent hour I’d say.
18: Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai: Relay Shousetsu wa Ketsumatsu ga Hanpanai
English: Haganai: A Round-Robin Story’s Ending Is Way Extreme
Japanese: 僕は友達が少ない リレー小説は結末が半端ないL(゜□゜)」
MAL Score: 7.07
Unaired 13th episode of Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai.
Bringing entertainment in that Haganai way.
It’s been about a year since we’ve seen the cruel dark haired Yozora, the blonde meat Sena, Necromancer’s biggest fan Kobato, the tough looking yet gentle hearted Kodaka, and…the others. Yes, the gang is back in this special episode to bring forth some entertainment just before the big Season 2 hits the horizon.
Series like Haganai in the anime industry getting an OVA should be no surprise. The original series is quite popular with a later manga adaptation that landed 7th place on the top 30 of Japanese Comic Rankings with its debut of the second volume. Furthermore, the series’ anime adaptation has spawned the development of a visual novel that sold over 50,000 units. As such, this little bonus here should be a refreshment of what the Neighbor’s Club was, is, and will be in the future.
Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai/Haganai: Add-on Disc (also known as I Don’t Have Many Friends: Add-on Disc) is a special unaired episode produced by AIC Build. Of course, special episode in today’s anime industries are usually filled with fan-service and other eye candy scenes. Although this episode doesn’t have the theme of the generic beach, sleepovers, or onsen themes, it does have something else we might not expect in the form that is more defined as literal comedy.
The episode is like this:
You take a novel, put thoughts and imaginations into it, add the characters/settings in, and the gags as well as the comedy and fan-service. Then, after all that, present it to the audience visually. What do you get? This special Haganai episode.
Indeed, this special episode has a lot of comedy and gags that is presented in the way of novel relay telling. With their imaginations, the Neighbor Club is at it again. They write this novel out of their imaginations or maybe more based on their personal ideologies. It’s hard to explain it but let’s just say that the club has some generic yet fun ideas.
Yozora and Sena retains their rivalry like the tiger and the dragon in this special episode as well. They bring the heat of their rivalry in the novels they write this time around in the form of medieval warfare involving tentacle rape, obese beast, angels, and foot licking. It’s hard to take this serious at all considering that it’s so generic and commonly seen in most OVAs. Not just that though, the other characters’ stories are based on their own imaginations in the most bizarre ways ranging from a girl in the lake to mecha absurdity from outer space. Still though, it was pretty damn funny.
The artwork of the special episode retains the same edges and style. There’s nothing different really, not even in the novels themselves. One can expect though that Haganai isn’t a top contender in the artwork department so don’t expect spectacular visuals.
On the other hand, the soundtrack features more of a ensemble especially at the end. The OP song still retains its originality though and it’s a billboard of saying “the Neighbor Club is still here and we’re not going anywhere till we make some friends”. The soundtrack is pretty fun to listen to and an amusing refreshment of the series.
Overall, this special episode is like a warmup for the big marathon. By that, I mean a little preview of the comedy and entertainment of what’s to come for Season 2. You want some cruelty? Yozora is there. You want some meat? Sena says hi. You want some cosplay? Kobato greets you. Ultimately, special episode like this isn’t special but has a lot of humor to it. There’s nothing wrong with having a good laugh and Haganai can bring forth a lot of that. So, expect 20+ minutes of Neighbor Club fun thrown at your face.
Simply Amazing. Hilarious. Funny. Enjoyable.
Add ons rarely have a story but usually just show your favorite characters in a fun fashion you have not yet seen in.
That is what this OVA does. The characters are able to do insane things, in the form of a story. If you liked the original series you will probably like this too.
Conclusion: You should definitely watch this for comedy, mindless fun and easy to get jokes. Also it is just fun to watch how the characters interact and overreact and their way of teamwork.
The animation quality is on par with the main series, though you’re going to get some really wacky outfits and (very ecchi) mechs? There’s a serious effort to parody other series, which I’ll let the viewed discover for him/herself, sometimes embedded in the visuals. The series’ only absolution is the liberal airtime given to Sena. As in the main series, expect significant ecchi – though this one goes pretty close to full H.
You have the same OP as the parent series and the VA cast is identical as well. They add a new ED sung by the cast, which has an annoyingly-repetitive main melody.
We find our loners club on a typical day where they decide to take turns writing a single short story. This soon turns into everyone’s individual fantasy involving Kodaka as they churn out the most in-cohesive story ever written. While certain parts are amusing, the overall plot is quite lame and contributes absolutely nothing to the overall series. I’ll admit I’m a bit biased as I was hoping for a bit more relevance given the less-than-stellar ending to the parent series.
While each character does get air time, their interactions are as you would expect from the main series. Their interactions are still fun to watch, but I think the series missed a great opportunity to give some more background on Rika/Yukimura.
Other than for base entertainment and/or fan service, this doesn’t add much to the parent franchise, for dedicated fans of the main show only.
17: GA: Geijutsuka Art Design Class: Aozora ga Kakitai
Japanese: GA 芸術科アートデザインクラス 青空が描きたい
MAL Score: 7.08
GA: Geijutsuka Art Design Class OVA. “I Want to Draw the Blue Sky”
16: Ai no Kusabi
English: Ai no Kusabi
MAL Score: 7.10
On the planet Amoi, a person’s status is primarily dictated by the color of their hair. This society is run by the AI supercomputer known as Jupiter and its governing board of perfect blondes, referred to as Blondies, living in the capital city of Tanagura. However, the darker-haired humans live out their lives in the golden “pleasure city” of Midas and its outlying slum Ceres. They are known as “mongrels,” and most cannot progress out of the slums.
Three years ago, a boy named Riki disappeared from the slums of Ceres. Once the revered leader of the gang Bison, a sudden encounter with an elite Blondie, Iason Mink, forced Riki to abandon everything he had cultivated. The boy was snatched from his home and forced to become Iason’s pet. Riki has spent the past three years enduring numerous blows to his pride, his time in Tanagura nothing but a form of torture.
Now that Riki has returned, Bison once again rallies behind him. The risk he finds himself in, however, is much greater than ever before—there is always someone ready to sell him out.
I was expecting a not too heavy yaoi story involving hot boys in chains, but I got so much more. The story is pretty intense to sit through but its worth it. It has characters whom you actually feel for and a story that fits the old adage of leaving you wanting more.
By the end I was quite taken aback at how good the story was, don’t mistake it for a shallow or superficial anime, at its core this is one of the best love stories I’ve ever seen. Regardless of gender, genre, live action/animation, the story has enough integrity to hold its own as a love story.
The art is very earlier nineties style so its a bit nostalgic but if thats not your thing, try to see past it for the sake of the story.
It’s a little slow starting but give it a chance, there are some very hot scenes in this short anime & I’d recommend it to anyone who’s willing to watch it.
I am now looking forward to seeing the remake when it comes out.
I was looking through the recommendation on my Youtube channel, when I saw the latest remake of this. I tried it, but I found it…unsatisfactory. On the related video column, there was this AMV with a song twilight so I watched out of pure curiosity, and it turns out to be this version, 1992, and believe it or not, that mini video caught my interest more than the 2012 version of Ai No Kusabi.
Story — Absolutely outstanding. On the AMV that I watched, they showed alot of steamy scenes, and I honestly thought it was going to be a plotless Yaoi anime filled with sex sex and sex. To my surprise it was more than that. Oh the ending…I can’t even begin to describe how I felt watching the ending…it certainly irked me, to think after all they went through they would get such ending? Don’t get me wrong, it was satisfactory, and I thought it fit their character because truth be told, if that ending didn’t happen, they wouldn’t have been able to be open about their love in public anyway because it was taboo. So I thought, although the ending was sad, and depressing, it fit perfectly.
Art– I prefer the art in the older version, Iason Mink was much hotter in this than the latest version. But that’s just a personal preference. Their character development was also very well done. On the last OVA, towards the end, when Riki asked Iason to take Guy with them, there was hesitation in latter’s eyes, but he knew if he refuse, Riki’s heart would only be much further to reach. And when they were on that bridge, when the world was literally shattering around them, Iason told Riki to go with Guy because he’s legs had been cut off, and although Riki didn’t want to leave, it seemed like he felt indebted to Guy, so he saved him, but in the end he went back to be with Iason.
Enjoyment — I rated this 9 because on the first OVA it was a bit tedious, but also because I was crying my eyes out watching the second OVA.
Overall, I absolutely recommend this because it’s an amazing Anime, and it will definitely shock you. The plot is really intense, and the ending isn’t the usual ‘happily ever after’ which I think conveys what love really is. Not everyone get their happy ending, and even more so in that kind of society. Aside from the whole different planet thingy, I think this Anime was very realistic. I mean, not to sound racist, but in the past the white, blue eyed blonde has always been favoured more, and not just that, the world is also infested with racist scums, and those who proclaim themselves as superior compared to everyone else. To find true love, you have to look pass social status, appearance, and skin colour.
The entire plot of this anime is disgusting… and yet I enjoyed it. While the show was pretty much about a sex slave, there wasn’t THAT much sex in it. The show focused more on the plot rather than sex and I think that made the show a whole lot better.
What I wasn’t expecting was the ending, oh god that ending. I thought that after all Iason and Riki went through that the show would have ended differently. The ending touched my heart in a way that made me cry – which is unusual for a yaoi to make me feel that way.
If you’re looking for a yaoi anime that is more plot than sex then this is the one for you.
15: Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 3rd Season: Tenchi Seirou naredo Namitakashi
Japanese: 天地無用！魎皇鬼 第三期 天地晴朗なれど波高し？
MAL Score: 7.24
After a ‘modified’ ending to the Choubimaru incident, the punishments for the offending parties is metted-out, as well as a surprise marriage proposal by Misao to Mashisu. It almost didn’t happen… until Mihoshi and Misao’s mother Mitoto steps in and gives her and her family’s approval, much to the dismay of FORMER G.P. Marshall Minami Kuramitsu. Otherwise, life goes on as usual for the Masaki clan. But soon when the question of how Tenchi’s mother had died is presented, the answer nearly causes a rift between Tenchi, his father and his grandfather, for which only Tenchi’s future mother-in-law Rea can solve… as well as the resolution of Noike’s unusual secret.
14: Amagami SS OVA
English: Amagami SS
MAL Score: 7.24
According to the official website, two-volume OVA of Amagami SS will be distributed to those who purchase all the volumes of the DVD/Blu-rays of the TV series. The first volume will carry three short episodes of Haruka, Kaoru and Sae. The second volume will contain Ai, Rihoko and Tsukasa’s episodes.
These 6 short OVAs are some neat add-ons to the each of the 6 girls’ stories. All 6 OVAs are roughly 5 minutes each, and mostly could be fit towards the middle or the end of each respective arc.
The OVA order follows the arc order of the series based on the current girl which is: Haruka > Kaoru > Sae > Ai > Rihoko > Tsukasa.
While all 6 OVAs are short, they’re all pretty funny, interesting and every character has the same personality they did in the main show.
If you enjoyed Amagami SS and wanted just a little bit more from your favorite female (or from any/all of them), then I definitley recommend watching these OVAs. Only takes about half an hour!
The animation/sound/characters and story are as always really good and this still feels like the original series. Not too much happens but we get some extra scenes of the couples and some more nostalgia. I had to give this an 8 just because it was flawless and cute.
13: El Hazard: The Magnificent World
MAL Score: 7.29
After Makoto Mizuhara agrees to testify against the boisterous student council president Katsuhiko Jinnai for bribing school clubs in the recent student council elections, Jinnai chases him down in an attempt to silence his self-proclaimed rival. Suddenly, during the chase, time stops for everyone—except Makoto. Perplexed, he wanders around the campus until he notices a light coming from the school’s closed-off basement, where an ancient relic had just been uncovered.
Makoto is walking toward the artifact surrounded by strings of light, when out of it comes an otherworldly woman who claims she has been waiting for ten thousand years to see him. Weakened by the passage of time, she uses her remaining power to transport a confused Makoto to another world, which she refers to as El-Hazard. However, others who are still at school are also caught in the spell, namely: Jinnai; Masamichi Fujisawa, the alcoholic teacher; and Nanami Jinnai, the headstrong sister of president Jinnai.
The fantastical and magnificent world of El-Hazard awaits these four individuals where they will become entangled in the story of its inhabitants and embark on an adventure filled with laughter, danger, and even romance.
El-Hazard has all the hallmarks of an excellent series. The story is deep and engrossing, and told well despite the short length. You won’t feel as though you’ve been gypped out of closure due to the lack of episodes. At the same time, nothing is really ‘glossed-over’–though the plot is involved, most everything is well explained.
The characters are memorable and dynamic. While it’s true that most of them have their stereotypes, the series manages to take a little time, sometimes if only a scene or two, to paint most of them in another light–just to let you know there’s more to them. There are two disctinct camps of villains as well, each with their own agenda. If you like dashing, cunning baddies with a web of secrecy, El-Hazard has that. if you prefer your enemies maniacal, biosterous, sometimes silly, and slightly insane, El-Hazard has you covered. The same goes for the protagonists. El-Hazard has your ‘knight in shining armor’ types; your well-meaning perverts; your innocent, ‘didn’t ask to be here’ types; and even your ‘You’re such a $&(*$@, why do you have to be a good guy?’ types.
The artwork won’t disappoint. It’s probably not the best you’ve ever seen, but it’s certainly not the worst. What’s most important is that it’s an enduring enough style that it’s hard to see it as ‘dated’. The sound is exceptional too. The background music really helps to get you into the ‘feel’ of the world you’re experiencing, and the opening score is powerful and memorable. The ending themes are enjoyable, too. ‘Boys Be Free’ (‘Back in Love’ in English) is performed by Alielle, is catchy, fun, and bemusedly suggestive, while ‘Little Flower’ (which takes over as the ending theme after a few episodes) is mellow and somber, in keeping with how it wants to make you feel by that point in the storyline.
One of the most impressive qualities of El-Hazard in my opinion is the exceptional ability of the English dub actors. Yes, we all have our own opinions, but I personally don’t care for dubs, and I can count on one hand the anime I’ve ever seen that I could stand in anything other than the original Japanese. This is one of them. The dub actors get the inflection right and deliver some great one-liners that probably aren’t what the original characters were saying, but are close enough to make the experience that much better for the non-Japanese speaker.
I’ll also give El-Hazard an impressive rewatch value. This is the show I tend to use to get curious newcomers to anime started, and it never gets old after many re-watches.
To be fair since this is a review, if I were to knock anything about El-Hazard, I would have to go with some of the faster animation sequences. The art is great, sure, but whenever there’s a scene where lots of people are moving really quickly all at once (IE, a fight, a bunch of people running, or some acrobatics), they tend to shift about rather strangely, making it look as though some corners were cut on the drawing board. Que sera.
All in all, El-Hazard isn’t long and it’s worth your time to add it in to your anime watching experience. Maybe you’ll even enjoy it enough to catch some of the other series, though keep in mind that ‘The Wanderers of El-Hazard’ is a TV version (so it’s the original story told differently). ‘El-Hazard 2: The Magnificent World’ is the sequel, if that’s what you’re looking for.
So what are you waiting for!? Check out El-Hazard, and trust me, give the English dub a try this time! ^.^
I’ve rewatched it and it hasn’t lost its fragrance.
The art is top notch. Starting from background art to characters, everything is well-defined and has its place in the story.
The story itself may look meh, but, it really isn’t. It is a well thought story. The characters may get sloppy from time to time, but they are well defined and fluid. The plot itself is great and it has its share of everything. Its catchy and it stays catchy. Its funny. Its dumb. Its wonderful. Its original.
The music and the sound is impressive.
12: Bubblegum Crisis
MAL Score: 7.29
The year is 2032, seven years after the Second Great Kanto Earthquake decimated Tokyo. Now, the city is reborn as MegaTokyo, built from the labors of mechanical beasts known as “Boomers.” Originally created to benefit humanity, the mysterious corporation known as Genom now produces Boomers with incredible destructive power as a new type of advanced weaponry, capable of disguising themselves as humans.
The AD Police is a new special unit to counter the ever-increasing Boomer-related crimes. Overwhelmed by the sheer amount of crimes and disparity in strength, the AD Police poses little opposition to the Boomers. A mysterious vigilante force known as the Knight Sabers, wearing powersuits more advanced than the military, is the citizens’ only hope for protection. Led by Sylia Stingray, Priscilla “Priss” Asagiri, Nene Romanova, and Linna Yamazaki, these beautiful girls take out any Boomer that steps out of line.
Science fiction, ever the barometer of public fear, reflected this in books and film. Alien, in 1979, brought the world a vision of space travel in the future that for once was filthy and corrupt and run by giant corporations with no morals. The seminal Blade Runner stunned 1982 with the visually amazing concept of a huge, grimy neon tech-sprawl future LA of totally mixed ethnicity and robots that behave more like humans than humans do. And William Gibson’s famed 1984 novel Neuromancer gave the world a fevered, lavish nightmare of clashing technology and humanity embroiled in a tale of global tech businesses up to no good, in the process giving this burgeoning genre a name: cyberpunk.
Where one media succeeds, others will follow. Cyberpunk anime was as inevitable then as live action western versions of anime have become now. Bubblegum Crisis was the leading edge of that cyberpunk anime, taking the elements that worked for the rest and expertly marrying it with many of the elements that make anime unique. Today, Bubblegum Crisis is one of those \’classic\’ titles that anime fans need to know about, a Terminator or Star Wars of the anime canon. Even though its popularity in Japan was only a fraction of the reception it enjoyed overseas, it’s my contention that without Bubblegum Crisis there’d have been no Akira film.
But is it any good? On one hand, detractors can say that this is a messy blending of many things that have already been done; a Blade Runner city with a flavour of Neuromancer-come-Alien-come-Aliens dystopian griminess and high-tech evil and full of Terminators and Robocops, filtered through that anime staple, mecha. This is largely true, but doesn’t matter. Outside anime, nothing so ambitious could ever work; but within the totally created universe that’s only possible in animation or CGI, and only really practical in animation, it not only works but excels.
Originally planned as a series of 13 OVA episodes, it eventually ran to only 8 episodes, and some key plot points were altered because of this. Another 3 episodes were released later in an OVA series called Bubblegum Crash, using elements of the 5 unmade episodes that never made it originally. Each is largely self contained, but both multi-episode arcs of storyline and a loose overall plotline are also present. Being an OVA, the time period and hence staff is not as fixed as can be seen with a TV series, the net effect of which being that pretty much every episode is different from each of the others, with different emphases and different priorities. On top of this, half way through, some key decisions were reversed about the planned death in episode 5 of a character who, in hindsight, clearly stands out as the main protagonist. Plus, the eventual premature demise of the series stemmed from the two owners of the franchise, Artmic and Youmex, taking each other to court. DVD releases nowadays seem so snarled in legalities that the horrendous dubtitling is almost forgivable. So, it’s a total mess, basically.
But like I say, this doesn’t really matter. What Bubblegum Crisis does so well, well enough that it relegates these things to positions of secondary importance, is cool. BGC may not have a very sure idea of what it wants to be and do, in a general sense, but it does it with irrepressable style; everything about BGC is very cool. Kenichi Sonoda, who went on to be the man behind Gunsmith Cats, designed the characters impeccably, including their incredible sleek hardsuit armour, which look like what Lamborghinis and Ferraris would look like if they were shaped like women. Various other mechanical designs, by Aramaki Shinji, later to be mechanical designer for Evangelion and director of Appleseed 2004, largely borrows from much of early \’80s sci-fi, and frankly looks fantastic. There’s a very brash, colourful, in-your-face ‘80s vibe also driving the general design ethos, which might sound ghastly but is in fact perfect for crumbling, self-digesting neon dystopias. Much of the visuals are, as mentioned, lifted from Blade Runner and run through a series of anime design quirks. Animation is by no means stunning generally, but gets the job done, and when you factor in the fact that this is from 1987, it really has some very nice touches.
No review of Bubblegum Crisis is remotely complete without mention of the music. BGC is famous for its music almost as much as it is famous for popularising women kicking arse. Synth-rock songs that are as artificial and processed as the nutrasweet in diet coke, tunes painstakingly designed to be catchy and memorable, are the order of the day; it is hard to express how much raw fun it is. It\’s also archetypally \’80s, overblown and brash – and outside of BGC, I generally hate \’80s stuff. The songs especially manage to encapsulate that B-movie feeling; like the irrelevant pop songs at the end of a film that was cheesy but still really entertaining, they are driving, infectious ballads with amazing powers of mood-lightening. Many have noted the similarity between the opening of the first episode and the start of the 1984 film Streets of Fire; but the integration of the music into the story in BGC is much smoother. And, while I love the music, it\’s immediately obvious it\’s the kind of thing that\’s likely to provoke strong responses that won\’t be positive for everyone – a gamble any series that relies so heavily on music must make. Even if you\’re not keen on the sound, though, there\’s no mistaking the skill, high production values and copious amounts of effort behind it.
By having the rock singer character as one of its toughest protagonists is a move that trumps Streets of Fire\’s equivalent role in every way. BGC\’s other characters are far from original by modern standards, but it\’s worth remembering that they set many of those standards themselves. These are archetypes, not stereotypes; those that set the trend, not those who follow them. No-one looks down on Dirty Harry, just because he spawned a thousand maveric cop characters.
It can\’t be denied that there are some fairly major things wrong with BGC. For one, it\’s almost totally episodic, with no real overarching plot and little other than the strong, well rounded characters to link one episode to another. For another, the characters may be strong and extremely charismatic, but they don\’t really change much or develop like they should. For a third, it suffers from the lack of an ending; the last story just stops like any other, and you reach for the last disc…and it\’s just music videos (also real fun). These problems are at least addressed in the 1999 remake, Bubblegum Crisis Tokyo 2040, but at the expense of design, music and general coolness. What the remake did not fix, however, is the basic implausibility of the whole thing. Bloodsucking robots, transforming motorbikes and mecha-tentacle beasts strain one\’s suspension of disbelief unpleasantly at times.
Nonetheless, Bubblegum Crisis, or, to give it its full title, \’Bubblegum Crisis MegaTokyo 2032: the story of Knight Sabers\’ (yes, BGC was in fact the origin of the now-common phrase MegaTokyo – another example of its wide influence), remains immensely enjoyable popcorn anime, and remains fascinating for anyone interested in the history of anime. After 20 years, that\’s pretty damn impressive.
Immediately Ghost in the Shell comes to mind, some scenes look almost identical, the Oshii vibe so thick, the possible influence on the man (and even Shirow himself) is made more and more questionable throughout the OVA with many stylistic choices bringing the GitS franchise to mind.
After the introduction of the various comings and goings of the city, a concert suddenly begins, introducing a blonde wigged character Priss, and is intercut with the appearance of a boomer wrecking havoc. The direction and editing, and hell even the music are all excellent and ensure the OVA gets off to a cracking start. 80’s cyberpunk at its best!
The story follows four plucky young women with nothing better to do in their spare time than to don cyber-outfits and blow crap up, preferably those pesky rogue boomers who keep appearing all over the city. The combined IQ of these four women finally figures out that Genom corporation, which apparently ”accounts for 68% of the world’s cars”, might have something to do with these incidents and so Bubblegum Crisis delivers 8 episodes of pure unadulterated fun in a way only 80’s anime can.
Mega-Tokyo, 2032. This is the future, but seen from the eyes of the 80’s. Each decade’s vision of the future is idiosyncratic, and so each decade produces strange and brilliant works of genius or garbage, with Bubblegum Crisis firmly in the strange and brilliant camp, albeit lacking both genius and garbage, though still retaining quality production and vision. Plenty of great directorial choices, POV shots, pans, zooms, it’s all dynamic and makes up for the dated, yet still decent, animation.
No matter the humour or clunky dialogue or 80’s sprinkled aesthetics in hair styles and clothing, this is cyberpunk at its peak. Everything associated with the genre is present, the connective nature of society, the paranoia of having satellites hovering above your head with the capability of blowing you up, biotech suits, corporate power run amok. In a sense Bubblegum Crisis is more cyberpunk than a lot of cyberpunk anime out there which sometimes jettison a lot of the genre’s traits and settle for dystopic hijinks with the occasional robot AI thrown in. Bubblegum Crisis revels in the genre and doesn’t leave anything out.
The anime came out at what might be seen as cyberpunk’s peak of influence and exposure in the mainstream, and as such is worth a watch for its historical significance, in terms of impacting the genre of cyberpunk in anime and also being a window to the time. It’s so classy it even has time to throw a shout out to The Third Man!
It’s flawed, but packed with so much creative ideas and flair, you can’t help but bop along to the 80’s tunes. Each episode starts with a cinematic musical montage of 80’s soft rock/pop and narrative-advancing imagery. This isn’t on-par with cyberpunk like GitS, you have to accept the humour and gaping plot-holes as part of the charm, or you’ll just not be involved and will tune out. The AD Police are written as what a 12 year old imagines the NYPD are like, complete with the gruff black police captain arguing with the rookie cop.
There’s lots of subtle visual flair in this OVA, the directors knew what they were doing. (Except for episode 5 and 6. That director probably went to the school of Koichi Mashimo, though he wasn’t helped by the screenwriter for those episodes either) Too often in post-millennium anime there are tons of ‘arty’ shots that are meaningless and the camera either flies around the place like a steadicam-operator on crack, or pans laboriously across the screen as if directed by an old age pensioner, but back in the 80’s/90’s they knew how to pace episodes just fine while choosing narrative-coherent viewpoints to the action. I guess I’m harping that old cliché of modern day anime being too shallow with emphasis on looks rather than content, but considering that this anime is packed with very clichéd jokes that were old even back when this was released, the argument is kind of moot.
If you want to go extra deep you could propose that Bubblegum Crisis is yet another exploration of the relationship between man and machine and clearly veers on the side of external mechanics and views bio-implementation, or to be simple about it: cyborgs, as a threat to the world. Even though boomers are technically robots, though the distinction is rarely made clear especially when they all have such charming personalities, their humanoid form isn’t a random creative decision. Boomers, anyone associated to them, and augmentation in general are clearly bad for your health and the only way to make the world a better place is to jump into exoskeleton mecha-suits and be a master of cybernetics, not a slave to them. It’s possibly an archaic almost Luddite philosophy, especially in the 21st century where bio and nano-technology is getting more and more traction. Yep, I just analysed an anime with ‘bubblegum’ in the title.
But you get the gist, Bubblegum Crisis is consistently entertaining and has very good direction to boot, and its shortcomings can be seen as part of the package; a conscious decision and not a by-product. You’re meant to laugh at the ridiculousness of the entire premise, especially the glorious last episode’s tribute to the character of Nene, and you’re meant to lap up the universe presented because you’re a cyberpunk fan. The damn anime’s called Bubblegum Crisis!
If you’re not grinning while watching this, you’re in a crisis of your own and I suggest you chew some gum to get over it.
However at the same time, being a fan I think i can give you a true reflection of the series, being able to mention things that other reviews are missing because they glossed over the series and did not give it the attention it deserved. I think in some ways a review that the reader can relate to can sometimes improve their watching/re-watching of a series.
So onto the matter at hand Bubble Crisis 2032, an OVA series which 3 top notch studios (AIC, Artmic and Youmex) gave their all towards in the 80s and in my opinion really raised the bar when it came to what you could achieve in animation and also among all of these talented people was none other than legendary designer Kenichi Sonoda. Unfortunately the downside of having so many good chefs, is the inevitable arguments over who owns what, which in the end was the downfall of BGC.
First lets talk about story, BGC gets a lot of flak over its story, many arguing that it is poor or lacks any real overbearing plot. Now i have a problem with this, yes you could say that if you’re comparing it to syndicated series which run with week by week episodes and are produced much quicker, but BGC was not produced in that manner and was never intended to be, its release of 8 episodes was staggered over 4 years due to the amount of work it required to do it to the level of technical quality wanted. At the time most of us never were able to see all episodes back to back like people now get to do, the producers knew this and focused on trying to convey EMOTIONS in each episode. The dying of a loved one, loyalty and vengeance for a friend, saying goodbye for a last time, fighting a losing battle, all of these concepts were tried to be portrayed using a situation and an fitting background song, right up to the end credits music and background image the directors were trying to convey a feeling with their story above all else. And i think that was a good approach, since the episodes had more impact on me and i was not simply waiting to see the next episode like i do with anime nowdays, i was instead thinking about the episode i just watched, which was a very good thing since the next episode was likely weeks if not months away. A lot of money was put into this series, and it was risky even for the time but im grateful they decided to do it this way as it leaves a lasting impression on most that watch it, sometimes subconsciously.
The characters themselves were a revelation, they were a new breed of tough woman leading the fight in mechanized combat suits. That was barely common to have only woman as leads in the action genre.
Though with only 8 out of the 13 episodes completed they did what they could with depth, but its what the characters represented that was most special.
They covered a broad spectrum of female heroines, Priss a tough, bike riding, battle hardened fighter who happens to be a singer, Linna the represented average aerobics girl of the 80s but with the ability to be able to tranform that athletism into fighting prowess, Sylia a smart weathly elite who isnt a afraid to drop the high class lady act and dirty her hands when she needs to, and lastly Nene a computer and electronics specialist willing to put herself in the battle zone.
What made them even more special though was they all had their weaknesses, and the designers wanted us to know they were not perfect individuals and this added something to the characters that was largely absent in other action movies of the time.
Priss is poor and has had a rough life, its also implied that she never was well educated but she does what she can to get by and enjoy her life and improve the life of people she knows…or at least exact justice on their behalf.
Sylia is seen as the cool headed leader, but secretly she has an immense hatred for Genom Corp inside her which is strong enough to impair her judgement and cause her to lash out at others.
Linna although generally up beat is not living the life she wants, she would love a glamourous life and a great boyfriend but she is stuck in the mediocrity of being a below middle class person in Megatokyo, a cycle she cannot break out of. Then theres Nene, she desperately wants to be more physically imposing and it frustrates her that she isnt given much respect, she doesnt just want to be known as a computer geek at a police department and really would like people to know what shes really capable of.
Art and character design, I think the series gets its deserved ratings here. Personally i think its a masterpiece of its era, using methods an approaches that will never been done again since they would be unfeasible today. Its a testament to what human artists are capable with just simple tools and hundreds of hours of painstaking work that they simply poured to their hearts into. If you’re an artist or have ever worked with professional artists you will understand it and appreciate it for the true paramount achievement that it was. If you’re not an artist, just look at it like this, BGCs artwork is very much like a Ferrari F40, its not the best car ever made, but its a representation of what was achievable by the experts of that era, and for that it will never be replicated again because the technology changed, people have changed and the mindsets have changed. For that reason its look will always be unique and special.
The sound, for me the music production was the best id ever come across, in both English and Japanese the production quality was supreme, the musical ability of the producers and the vocal ability of the singers is as good as it got for any form of entertainment in the 80s, and that’s saying a lot considering how great an era for music and movies the 80s is considered as being.
Lets talk about the english version music first, since for me its unbelievable to say there are some tracks that are actually better in English (Rock me & Don’t Forget). Now if any of you are familiar with older anime, you’ll know that how botched english versions can be, but with BGC they really gave excellent attention to it so it could stand alone as an equal in quality.
Though the Japanese version is better overall as expected, Ohmori Kinuko really giving a vocal performance that’s as good as it gets.
Voice acting though is just average for both English and Japanese versions. Nowadays we have near Hollywood quality (or Japanese film industry quality) voice acting in games and anime. So BGCs voice acting is a couple notches below, it just lacks the substance that you get with newer productions that really drive home the characters intentions. The relative background silence you get during speaking is typical of the sound production of the time, that is one area I am glad is gone these days.
In terms of enjoyment, if you’re a person of the era there is no way you would say this is anything less than a 9 (i say 10), because you simply hadnt seen anything like this at the time, especially if you were outside of Japan. Taking nostalgia out of it and looking at it just as an Anime fan…a knowledgeable anime fan would certainly understand what was achieved here and in that case its an 8 or even 9 still. (If you got this far i want to thank you for reading this rather long review)
Overall, its a 9/10 for me and if you grew up in the 80s and are an anime watcher you absolutely must watch Bubblegum Crisis.
11: Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 3rd Season
Japanese: 天地無用！魎皇鬼 第三期
MAL Score: 7.30
Ever since his powers awakened, Tenchi Masaki has attracted the attention of many powerful galactic beings, including the mysterious Lady Takami who dispatches her best warrior, Z, to observe him. Though he is under strict orders not to harm Tenchi, Z has no intention of playing by the rules and begins plotting his demise.
Meanwhile, on Earth, Tenchi tries to piece together more information about his family and the universe. But as usual, his life won’t be getting any easier, as his entire household enters a state of panic when Noike Kamiki Jurai—a woman claiming to be Tenchi’s fiancée—shows up out of the blue.
That being said, Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki 3 easily wins my nomination for Most Disappointing OVA Ever.
Maybe my hopes were too high. I did go into the series with certain expectations. It’s hard not to have expectations when the first episode of the series is littered with unedited footage borrowed from its parent series. (See my MAL blog for a sample screen capture. Both images are mere minutes apart within a single episode!)
Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki 1 was classic, must-watch anime, and TMRO3 ep. 1 reminds us why: The animation in the original series was juicy and detailed, the story had a natural flow from one event to the next, the characters defined one another through their interactions, and there was plenty of action and motion that held onto our attention on the screen from the beginning to the end.
It wasn’t Gone With the Wind, but it was decent entertainment. It knew what we wanted and it did the best damn job it could of staying focused and delivering the goods.
Ryo-Ohki 2 was not as focused. It was more episodic like the Tenchi Muyo! TV series, with lighthearted episodes centered around babysitting and Ryo-Ohki having a crush on Tenchi too. But it was still pretty good. Some episodes were pretty funny, and there were still fight scenes and energetic activity on-screen most of the time. Well… except for that last episode. Remember that episode at the end, where Ayeka and Sasami’s parents came to Earth, and there were a bunch of boring introductions and talking that never really lead to anything consequential? Yeah… That episode…
Unbelievably, the events of TMRO3 march proudly forward in the footsteps of that boring final episode of series two. There are a lot of introductions. There is a lot of eating and tea drinking. We meet Tenchi’s really dumb school friends, his long-lost sister, his dad’s new (Earthling) fiancé, Tenchi’s own Juraian fiancé, Grandpa’s Juraian wife, Ayeka & Sasami’s grandmother, Mihoshi’s brother, Mihoshi’s brother’s fiancé. (I wish I was joking.)
From episodes 2-5, while all of these characters are being introduced, nothing really happens. A lot of cooking. A lot of eating. A lot of small talk and dry chatter about relatives. No sealed demons being unleashed from ancient shrines, no crazy invaders from space to chase them, nothing reminiscent of the best parts of the original series. There are a couple of token space battles in TMRO3, but they’re small in scale and only last a few minutes before changing direction to something less interesting.
And what’s worse, with nothing interesting going on and no real source of conflict to make them butt heads, the established cast become lifeless paper dolls forced into predictable, monotonous roles while the writers focus on the dry backstories of all the new characters. Ayeka and Ryoko only have a few mild, token arguments. Gone are the days of “You go that way, I’ll go this way.” “…” “…That way was a dead end you idiot!” Sasami does nothing but cook, play with Ryo-Ohki, and talk about loving Tenchi. Washu walks around and makes small talk with the Juraian folk. Mihoshi shows her tits a lot and is still stupid, but not in the funny way she used to be. It’s literally like their souls have been sucked out and they don’t care about living anymore. And actually, that’s a lot like how I felt when I realized I’d just watched two hours of people eating and drinking and chatting up their in-laws.
Watching this series was a truly horrifying experience, and if I had known this series was this boring and ridiculous going in, I never would have bothered. The final episode is more mind-boggling and Evangelion-wannabe than exciting. (Giant white human monster hurr!) There’s not a single episode I can really honestly point to and say “This was okay” or “This made it worth it”. Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki 3 is a long, grinding parade of military grade boring, and it’s only because the series invoked my admiration for the original that I feel bad about burying this sequel at the bottom of the ratings barrel. If you’re looking for something to reignite your love of things Tenchi-related, this fan would recommend looking up some old manga scanalations or something instead of wasting your time on this snorefest.
I am huge Ryoko fan. I did not enjoy the fact that the producers threw in a "fiancee" into the mix especially when it feels like a lot of the fans of the other girls where cheated on by this decision. Most of the first 5 episodes have to do with us getting to know Noike and an overzealous brother of Mihoshi (this is pretty much the only romance we truly get to see panned out in the OVA). There isn’t much of a point in this OVA to me. Except to shake things up and explain a little bit about the Great Goddesses.
The only thing that saved this series for me was the very ending of the 5th episode and the entirety of the 6th. As as true fan of the original OVA, getting to see the Goddesses in full force was a great treat. Also, getting to know more about them was beyond belief. If I was to recommend this part of Tenchi to a new fan, I would only send them to the end of the episodes I enjoyed and explained to them what happens in the other episodes so they just get to see only the great in Tenchi. Over all, I didn’t like the series as much. The final episode was the best part about it.
I know there have been gripes with the changes that have been made but guys come on. Change happens, and while not the way we want, the story is expanding. And there are great gems to be had in this OVA. (get it? Three gems?)
Story: Kajishima returns for a new addition to the Tenchi franchise. I, like many others, gripped at the changes back when I first saw it but coming back into them, they are good. It’s a YMMV experience but I recommend it.
The story has brought it’s A to B game with new characters and certain stories that fans of the first 2 OVAs have been itching to learn about.
If there is to be one complaint, it’s that it feels that there are not enough episodes for all the info we received. Maybe if it had been an 8 to 10 OVA fans wouldn’t have been a bit left down. But isn’t it great that a story had them hooked that had them wanting more.
Art: Another thing that frazzled both me and other fans was the change in art direction. It was weird but recalling it, a new art style should not have been that jarring. Art changes all the time. The medium has changed from the traditional old cell style to the new.
Again a YMMV but it grows on you if you let it.
Sound: The soundtrack still retains that mysticism and comedic tone that it held in OVA 1 and 2. Nothing to detract or add here.
Character: Whoo. I went back in and I gotta say that while things have become a bit more wacky and slapstick, the character arcs have progressed well from the preceding anime and the growth here is well established. Let’s just say, the feels are going to be hit and it won’t just be on the side of the heroes.
Enjoyment: For new guys, Tenchi OVA 3 is a fun romp going in. There are things for the new fans to enjoy and a bit of trivia to help them with the backstories. For new fans, it will be good to see the old cast in a new situation and see them develop closer as a family. Just don’t get too hung up on the nostalgia.
Overall: I give OVA 3 of Tenchi Muyo Ryo-Ohki an 9.3 out 10. It is a great continuation to the old OVA and once more fuels the need for more Tenchi.
Please give it a try and be open minded. That’s all I ask.
10: Aa! Megami-sama!
English: Oh! My Goddess
MAL Score: 7.31
When college student Keiichi Morisato dials the wrong number while ordering for some food at his dormitory, he accidentally gets connected to the Goddess Hotline and a beautiful goddess named Belldandy appears out of a mirror in front of him. After getting kicked out of the dorm, Keiichi and Belldandy move to an old shrine and soon afterwards, Belldandy’s sisters Urd and Skuld move in.
If you’ve seen even a few romance titles you have most likely already seen a similar plot before. Though in its time this may have been pretty original. A college student Keiichi dials a wrong number trying to order food from his dorm and is accidently connected to a Goddess helpline in which a mysterious girl Belldandy appears in his room promising to grant him any wish he wants. The girlfriendless guy asks for someone like her to be by his side forever and thus the story begins.
Usually in these kinds of stories there is a lot of echiiness but there is none of that here. So if that sort of thing bothers you and just want to see a haremesque romance without the boobs and panty face plants then you will likely find this series appealing. The relationship between Belldandy and Keiichi is the focal point of the series. It’s for the most part sweet and satisfying despite the lack of any real intimacy. This is always a peeve of mine in anime and I think it has something to do with the Japanese mindset. The story does a great job of building chemistry and romance between the pair but they don’t act like a couple that is in love as much as we are lead to believe. Not that I ever seem to expect it anymore but how can you be in love this much and get embarrassed still about holding hands and cuddling together, let alone kissing, after living in the same house for nine months? It detracts overall from my score despite me liking this series a lot more than my score may reflect.
The story’s pacing also fluctuates and skips around quite a bit. Many months will pass with really no way of even knowing this is happening without the dialogue telling us or from just visually seeing the seasons pass by. But you would never know it from how little progress the leads make in terms of their romance. The shortness of the series doesn’t make having a really intricate plot feasible but it doesn’t really feel like its going anywhere until the last episode. I don’t know how closely it follows the manga since I haven’t read it but overall the story and the ending are satisfyingly concluded.
Keiichi is your standard male anime lead. By standard I mean he’s not all that special. Like almost all romance series the male love interest is usually uninteresting, weak, and not very manly. Despite Keiichi being in college he looks like he should be starting the 8th grade. Now this is played up in the story as to why he doesn’t have a girlfriend but still if you’re going to make a show around college aged people then make them look that age at least. However despite not finding him very satisfactory as a leading man he does tend to man up at the key times and grow during the course of the story.
Belldandy is basically your perfect Japanese girlfriend/wife. She’s moe for starters though not to the degree that we see in today’s anime. She’s beautiful, a perfect cook and homemaker, and great at school. Though the revelation of her attending school with Keiichi was a bit confusing since they just suddenly dropped that on the audience without any real explanation. That’s another issue I have with Belldandy. Of course I loved her, who wouldn’t? But she lives for Keiichi and everything she thinks of and does is only for him. There seems to be no will or drive of her own. I know this anime is intended for guys, but well I think guys need to see things that are more realistic as well. We don’t live to serve you; a relationship should be a partnership.
The rest of the cast is pretty small and of the supporting cast there are some memorable characters. Frankly Urd and Skuld steal the show and are much more interesting characters than either of the leads. I thought they complimented each other nicely, with each being very different personalities. Additionally I was pleasantly surprised that as they grew into the harem of pretty girls surrounding Keiichi they didn’t try to become love interests. Keiichi’s sister Megumi had some early promise but she faded from the story pretty quickly. Most of the rest of the characters are forgettable and don’t get much screen time.
The artwork and animation quality is very good. You would honestly never know that it was made in the early 90s without being told so. The characters are very detailed and realistic looking. My only issue with the characters would be the much to youthful look for Keiichi. This is a minor annoyance though. The magic and special effects are well done as well whenever one of the Goddesses uses her powers.
The voice performances are the weakest link of the OVA. Keiichi’s weakness is brought home by his un-masculine voice. Also Belldandy’s voice is a bit irritating on the nerves too. While I have enjoyed Kikuko Inoue’s roles before there is just something I don’t like about the way she voiced this character. Again Urd and Skuld steal the spotlight in the category as well. The OP/EN music were good however and fitting.
I was pleasantly surprised by my enjoyment of Ah! My Goddess. If you’re looking for a little light romance that is high on sweetness with a dash of comedy and very little perversion then I would recommend this series to you.
So lets get down to it. You got Keiichi, Belldandy, and the rest of the gang. In fact, all the main characters show up with the exception of Marller. You got the ‘sittin-at-home-waitin-for-a-phone-call-and-oh-shi-its-a-babe-in-the-window’ inciting incident. After a little fast forwarding they get their temple house set up and then everyone begins to make their entrances.
This is where the aforementioned discrepancies begin. Sayoko and Belldandy meet on a beach five months later instead of at the university. In the same episode they pull the love potion Keiichi, Sayoko, and Belldandy story while switching out Marller for Urd as the antagonist of that situation. If that weren’t strange enough, the third episode has them drag racing against Toshimas club for a bet that apparently be one-sided here.
But its in the fourth episode where the story really breaks down. There is some kinda crazy that keeps Belldandy and Keeichi from being near one another. Whats worse is that Belldandy has to go back to the Heavens in three days time and probably won’t be coming back any time soon. The source of all their problems? Some goofing looking tree that has a connection to both Keiichi and Belldandys childhoods. Hmmmm, I’m sure I don’t remember any of this in the rest of the franchise.
But thats not all. They even took a couple chances on changing characters. Take Keiichi for example. He is usually very shy, gentle, and understanding. Here he is more courageous and confrontational. Belldandy is pretty much the same, though I would say her “strong” moments fell short, and Tamiya and Ootaki seemed to be dialed way down.
As you can see, the OVA starts out as a missable re-tell, goes into a chopped up fast forward presentation, and finally evolves into a brand new story all its own. The names and setting remained the same, but the events and even the characters changed at least a bit.
So if you’ve skipped this in the past, re-think it. If you’re looking for a different twist to the AMG series, check it out. The only thing you have to lose is about 2 and a half hours.
Compared to the new adaptations.
+ Belldandy doesn’t behave like the perfect Mary Sue or is naive.
+ The romance is much more intense.
+ Belldandy really looks more attractive in some scenes than the new design.
+ Opening (sung by the voice actors!!!)
– There are large gaps between OVAs. If you don’t know the manga or haven’t looked at the newer adaptations, you can quickly lose the orientation.
– In general, the image quality is worse (with a few exceptions as mentioned above.
– There are no humor or jokes like in the new adaptions.
9: Seitokai no Ichizon Lv.2: Watasu Seitokai
Japanese: 生徒会の一存 Lv.2 渡す生徒会
MAL Score: 7.31
An OVA bundled with the eighth volume of the Seitokai Series Spinoff novel.
The story itself takes place on Valentine’s Day where you could see how the second season’s heroines handle the awkward situation of giving a gift to the main character, Sugisaki Ken.
Story: The story takes place on Vaelentine’s day, when in Japan, it’s the “big day” for girls to surprise their loved ones (or whom they admire) with some presents, with some chocolate. In this 24 minutes you’ll see how the second seasons heroines handle the gift-giving procedure and – sigh – their feelings meantime.
Characters: There’s not much to write about them, except from the occasionally robot-like Chizuru-san, in spite the others you mainly get the second season’s heroines with all the “tsundere harem” personalities.
Art: It looks like just as any of the second season’s episodes.
Sound: /Who watches comedy for the sounds?/
Enjoyment: I laught my ass off as the girls tried to do the very simple looking thing, giving a present.
Overall: You liked the second season? Go ahead, it won’t hurt you unless you already scraped down your face that the series don’t have more episodes.
8: Aa! Megami-sama! (2011)
MAL Score: 7.34
OVAs bundled with volumes 42, 43 & 46 of the Aa! Megami-sama! manga.
Story, Art, Character: I gave all of it a mediocre 5.
Reason, nothing has change it still follows the same genre, it still about the romance between Belldandy and Keiichi with Urd and Skuld on the side the only consolation here was in the 2 and last episode was the introduction twin newbie goddess bitches Eir and Saga. Whom at first wants to challenge Belldandy, even mocking her but in the end the two were proven to be useless even at the last episode of the OVA. The art, so far was still the same, the only difference here is Urd who doesn’t sport a sexy look on the last episode.
Sound: Fair 6.
Though most of the seiyuu’s in this OVA are still the usual, but them seiyuus simply don’t have that younger appeal anymore, I kinda like the seiyuu’s who did Eir and Saga voices and so is the opening theme, the closing…not much.
Enjoyment and Overall: Decent 4.
The enjoyment for this OVA is decent enough to be enjoyed, but overall this OVA is not bad, but not good enough at all. It would have been better if studio AIC should have made a season 3, and replace the seiyuu’s with new ones since like I’ve said the usual seiyuu’s don’t have that younger tone anymore. If AIC wants to maintain the usual seiyuu’s for such season, then it would be advisable to level up the character’s, like Kiichiy graduated, Keiichi and Belldandy got married, Urd got promoted, Skuld grows up and get into a relationship, things like that could reinvent the series as a whole. Then gain who am I kidding, like that gonna happen.
It Did! (Well, kinda)
The first episode gets a 7. Im not really sure what they were trying to do with it and it was confusing and a disgrace to AMG.
The second one however… It was great! Exactly what i expected a AMG vid to be.
(Easter egg: The winner’s screen is written in Russian)
However, i am rating this a 9 because of the first one.
Should you watch it? Yes. (But watch the two seasons first, as there isn’t much explaining done.)
7: Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki: Omatsuri Zenjitsu no Yoru!
English: Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki: The Night Before The Carnival
Japanese: 天地無用！魎皇鬼 SPECIAL お祭り前日の夜！
MAL Score: 7.35
After his recent battle in space, Tenchi Masaki believes that his fighting days are over. Unfortunately, his life is far from peaceful since Aeka Jurai Masaki and Ryouko Hakubi—the two women giving him the most grief—cannot seem to get along, continuing to fight over who gets to be Tenchi’s lover.
Since their usual romantic strategies fail, Aeka and Ryouko decide to research how to woo a man. After spending hours going through shoujo manga, the two decide to act like the girls they’ve read about and put Tenchi through various scenarios, with the hope that he will fall in love with one of them.
Tenchi Muyo Ryo-Ohki: The night before the carnival.
Story: No spoilers. You just need to go in and experience this last little rollercoaster on your own.
Art: The animation team did not slack off on character designs and even made some cool new additions.
Sound: Hm…think a bit more bombastic but still more of that classic Tenchi sound.
Character: This is all about the girls. Not action. Not threats. Just the cast being themselves.
Enjoyment: It was fun to see this little epilogue. I laughed and laughed and was curious to see how things went on their little ride.
Overall: The Night before the Carnival is an epilogue to the first OVA and is like that last ride before closing shop until next year.
8/10. Be sure to send them off with a smile.
6: Date A Live: Date to Date
Japanese: デート ア ライブ DATE TO DATE
MAL Score: 7.35
Bundled with the 9th volume of the original novel, it is the unaired 13th episode of the TV series.
Like I said, there is no story. The OVA focuses on dates with Tobiichii and Tohka. Shidou no longer wants Tobiichii to be in love with him, so he and Kotori devises a plan to get her to hate him. However, the more he tries, the more she loves him (ish). Then, he goes on a date with Tohka because apparently her mental state is unstable.
The art is still as colorful and amazing as the series.
It only focused on Shidou, Tobiichii, and Tohka, with the members on the blip and Kotori making a brief entrance. Tobiichii’s reactions to Shidou’s weird comments made their date really hilarious to watch.
One of the phrases was, “I am also a siscon that sleeps with his sister when given the chance. I also take her panties out and sniff them.”
Tobiichii, “Is that so? That’s great.”
OVerall, if you were a fan of the series, then you would already know what you are getting into. If you liked the series, then you definitely would like the OVA.
in fact, it is quite amusing.
The protagonist opens the episode declaring he is a lolicon ( yes, I thought it was an error too ). unfortunately ( for me anyway ) this episode focuses on origami, and tohka.
The art is as crisp as ever and the song ( especially the introductions ) were quite pleasing.
if anything is lacking, I’d say it’s the characters but you should be ready for a static tohka and origami, after watching season 1.
as ever, tohka is lacking in brainpower – ” do you hate me shidou? ”
and origami is apathetic and kind of weird- “woof”
Well, if anything was the best, I’d say I liked shidou trying to get rid of origami ( sadly…)
Watch it! it will be a good memory refresher before season 2.
also notice the metaphor of kotori with her ribbons. its noticeable this episode ( if you noticed before, congrats!)
5: Sora no Otoshimono: Project Pink
English: Heaven’s Lost Property OVA
Japanese: そらのおとしもの プロジェクト桃源郷[ピンク]
MAL Score: 7.40
The gang goes to an indoor swimming pool for some fun in the sun. As expected, all hell breaks loose when Tomoki goes on one of his perverted missions.
Meanwhile, Nymph is having some issues with the loss of her master and considers asking Tomoki to be her replacement master.
This episode was not aired on TV because it was deemed too dangerous…
For starters, let me talk a little about the story. It begins with a normal story, they go to the pool, Tomoki gets aroused by the numerous breasts, he gets hit by Sohara. Pretty normal for this show. But then it get’s to Nymph’s story for the rest of the episode. I’m just putting this out there, but I love Nymph. She kind of brings some peace to this crazy show. She’s pretty much the most mature person in the show, and I’m talking personality-wise. For her to be looking for a new master due to the fact she was abandoned by her old one really got to me. I guess that’s why I liked this episode so much, we get to see how she holds up. Other then that, not much of a storyline…
Artwork is as fantastic as the rest of the show. Good character art, scenery, FX, it’s all good. The artwork ties in with the show very well.
Sound, excellent. Good SFX, good voice actors, heck, I love all the voice actors in this show. They’re all magnificent, but out of all of them, I have a special place in my heart for Brittney Karbowski and her Ikaros role. Gotta love her!
Characters were as good as they were in the rest of the series. Tomoki is still a pervert, Sohara is still an angry animal whenever Tomoki is acting like a pervert, Ikaros is as pretty and curious as always. That’s about it though, no new characters were introduced, none were taken out, it’s all good.
I enjoyed this show as much as I did the rest of the show. I can’t say this was the best episode in the series, but it was definitely worthy of being called “A True OVA”. It was funny, it had all the wonderfully awkward moments like the rest of the show has, it’s just great.
Sora no Otoshimono is a great anime, I had alot of fun watching it and this OVA is nothing special but however it is another edition that adds to my enjoyment of the show. Right away i’ll say that I liked how the episode specified where this episode takes place in the story, after episode 13. There’s no action and no deep emotional moments, but there’s still the same light hearted echi comedy that there is throughout the series. There were alot of funny moments and this felt like just a regular episode. You could tell just by watching that they had fun when they made this episode it definitely shows. It goes without saying that the animation and sound are on point just like it is in the other episodes. It’s nice to see some bonus content with some entertaining unique characters and that’s what this OVA is good for. Like I said this felt like watching a normal episode and I enjoyed it just as much as the show itself. The ending had a nice touch to it as well which was good, it didn’t feel like complete filler.
Overall this was a great edition to the show, it was funny and I enjoyed watching it. I’d recommend watching this if you’re a fan of the series, or the first season alone for that matter.
Hope this review helped, give it a thumbs up if you agreed! (:
In all honesty, the episode wasn’t bad. It had a good story and it was honestly sad to see the new girl fall in love with the kid so badly that she would do anything for him. Like, bruh, after some point you HAVE to realize that she loves you more than just a friend.
4: Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki
English: Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki
MAL Score: 7.64
Seventeen-year-old Tenchi Masaki grew up hearing stories about how his ancestor used a sword to seal a demon inside a cave seven hundred years ago. When curiosity gets the better of him, Tenchi goes to the cave and stumbles across the sword from the legend. Thinking that the story is nothing more than a fairy tale, he removes the blade and inadvertently releases the demon, who turns out to be a space pirate named Ryouko Hakubi. Furious about being trapped for so long, she attacks Tenchi, but he is able to repel her with the sword, awakening his inner power. After seeing this, Ryouko takes an interest in her unlikely savior and decides to crash at his place.
As if it were a chain reaction, more alien women—Aeka Jurai Masaki, an uptight princess from the planet Jurai; Sasami, Aeka’s sweet younger sister; Mihoshi Kuramitsu, a ditzy Galactic Police Officer; and Washuu Hakubi, a wisecracking genius—gradually come in contact with Tenchi and begin living with him. Through his encounters with these five women, Tenchi begins to learn more about his ancestry, newfound power, and the looming threat lurking beyond the skies.
Like the many generic” harem animes” studios seem to spit out every season… this series too has an unlikely hero who suddenly finds himself surrounded by a multitude of hot babes… but that is the only common factor that this classic shares with its modern brethren of failures.
This series is an example of a harem done right with enough story and action to propel it into the category of “something special.”
The last 7 episodes were written in order to accomodate the GXP storyline and were created over 10 years later, so I personally consider them almost a separate series.
This is my favorite anime…period. I know I’m not in the majority on this, but it succeeds on every level. It is the definitive “harem” anime, while maintaining a great plot and fascinating universe/backstory. The fact that each of the women have complex and fascinating pasts and facets to their character is something unique to this genre. It’s heartwarming, romantic, raunchy, funny, dramatic, and even is a mystery at times.
Story: The story starts with Tenchi, mischievous grandson of a shrinekeeper, stealing the keys to the shrine from his grandpa. He then explores a cave that family lore claims to house a “demon”. Of course he accidentally frees the demon which sets into motion a complex series events that involves all the great powers of the universe. As Noike mentions in the 3rd OVA, the Masaki household rates as a galatic superpower by the end of the series. The interesting question is, how much of this did Grandpa plan out?
Art: Done in the mid-90’s it’s cel animation. That being said it’s beautifully animated though the characters sometimes are simple looking due to the style at the time. All of them are uniquely animated, wear different outfits and hairstyles which helps show the attention to detail.
Sound: Nothing to rock out to, but it all works. I have to add that the original voice acting english cast was great, and funimation really screwed up with the 3rd OVA and will burn in the fiery pits for the abomination of the GXP crossover.
Character: The main character is Tenchi, high school student and usually studious, courteous, and not very rebellious except for the carefully nutured interest in the cave. In true anime teen fashion, he acts a perfect gentleman around the ladies and though not oblivious to their charms, he refuses some very blatant offers
Now for the ladies:
Ryoko, the demon from the cave and former space pirate. She’s linked to her ship/ pet cabbit (rabbit/cat) Ryo-Ohki and has quite the interesting pedigree from both parents. She’s the first to fall for Tenchi and is very aggressive in her affection for him. Washu implies that her aggressive sexuality is a front to protect her sensitive feelings for Tenchi.
Ayeka, is the pampered princess of Jurai who arrives on Earth to arrest Ryoko; but instead ends up her primary rival for his affections. Presenting herself as younger and more proper than Ryoko, it’s often hinted that her mind isn’t as chaste as her act.
Sasami, is Ayeka’s younger sister. Despite being the youngest in the house, she often displays the most maturity. She bonds quickly with Ryo-Ohki and cooks most of the meals for the household. All this while holding back a secret that she fears will tear her from the others.
Mihoshi, the hapless GXP policeperson. Referred to by Washu as a “genius of pure luck”. She’s clumsy and not very diligent in her duties but her luck seems to land her in trouble and good fortune simultaneously. She plays the dumb blond of the group, but her forthright nature wins many over. She’s somewhat interested in Tenchi, but isn’t focused enough to compete with the highly competitive duo of Ryoko and Ayeka.
Lastly there is Washu. Washu is in her own words “so many things really…” some of these include being Ryoko’s mother, the greatest scientific mind in the universe, and the one person who sees all that is going on behind the scenes. It’s a measure of her self-confidence and maturity that she does not blow everyone’s secrets out of the water take control. She has some designs on Tenchi, even shedding her disguise as a young girl and returning to adult form to offer to bear his child. Of course he declines, and she remains in her guise from there on. It’s never stated, but her interest in Tenchi is mostly scholarly and only acts romantically interested to keep Ryoko and Ayeka on their toes.
It’s clear that the storytellers intended to include some traits of the ideal woman in each of the women, but also included flaws that prevented that.
Enjoyment: As I said before, this series strength lies in a great plot and rich world for the characters to interract in. The story never stagnates and the few times things slow down is to reveal a great deal about one of the characters. The blend of action and comedy goes well together and the rapidly expanding plot never leaves the viewer bored.
Overall: I’ve yet to see an anime do so much with so little. The closest I’ve seen yet is Code Geass, but it’s apples and oranges to this. Just when you think you understand everything about a character they reveal a new leaf…well Mihoshi is pretty straightforward and Tenchi’s dad is pretty much a middle-age perv. Everyone else though not only reveals their past, but also grow and change during the series. My fav character is Ryoko, as with many other people. She displays a depth of character and obviously is head over heels for Tenchi but has a very hard time showing him how she really feels.
I would recommend this to anyone! I will mention that the uncensored version can be risque at times (Ryoko isn’t familiar with nudity taboos) so I qualify everyone as everyone over 17.
To begin with, the plot. It’s a somewhat standard “hopeless boy surrounded by diverse girls embodying different fantasies” comedy on the surface, although the girls are a more interesting bunch than “cute one, tsundere, sister figure etc” by virtue of also being parodies of sci-fi anime archetypes; alien princess, super-strong killing machine, child genius, futuristic special forces. On top of that there are a series of events that make up a sci-fi plotline of their own which is reminiscent of other light-hearted adventure shows like Outlaw Star.
As a whole, it’s enjoyable and offers a nice twist on the usual harem comedy.
The art design is very 90s. The characters are drawn in a style that screams Outlaw Star, which is quite fitting for the sci-fi styling. While it could be considered functional and unremarkable, it is nevertheless fun and, to my mind, distinctive. You wouldn’t want the curvy and emotive characters of a Takahashi comedy show, or a hard-line Dynamic Pro style full of facial hair and giant melons, for a show which at its heart is a love letter to 90s sci-fi anime.
Sound is unremarkable but impossible to complain about – the dub voice acting ranges from quite bad to very funny, and the “Ayeka laugh” is pretty iconic as THE female villain laugh. It’s a show of caricatures, and so exaggerated voices are ideal.
The characters are all funny and well-developed for what could easily have been one-note jokes, setting the show apart from the competition. Mihoshi manages to quite nicely be a comic homage to characters from Bubblegum Crisis, Outlaw Star and other shows, as an example.
In terms of pure fun factor, you can’t beat this OVA. It’s a far above average example of a genre that is crowded with unremarkable entries.
3: Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 2nd Season
English: Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-Ohki
MAL Score: 7.65
While the galaxy remains at peace, Tenchi Masaki continues to live on Earth with Ryouko and Washuu Hakubi, Aeka and Sasami Jurai Masaki, Mihoshi Kuramitsu, and the cat-like creature Ryo-Ohki. Though it sounds great to be surrounded by so many women, they always end up making things difficult for Tenchi by constantly fighting for his attention, and their attempts at household chores always end in disaster.
Although life has become more chaotic since they moved in, Tenchi begins to form a strong bond with his roommates and gains more insight into their respective struggles and history.
Once again the” Tenchi magic” is put out on display in all its glory, but this time instead of fiery-hot action packed battles (of the space and sword kind), we focus on character development and getting to know some of our favorite Tenchi girls.
Sadly, this 2nd series does end on a cliffhanger and the 3rd series will only disappoint you… but I digress and encourage anyone who liked the 1st series to enjoy this one, because it may be the last time you enjoy Tenchi and the gang at its full potential.
2: Isekai no Seikishi Monogatari
English: Tenchi Muyo! War on Geminar
MAL Score: 7.80
Kenshi Masaki has been kidnapped and brought to the world of Geminar by a mysterious group. To get back home, he agrees to help them assassinate the newly crowned empress of the Shtrayu Empire, Lashara Aasu XXVIII, using a giant robot called a Sacred Mechanoid.
As her army fights them off, Lashara takes note of Kenshi’s abilities and demands that her attacker be captured alive, only to find out that the pilot is male which is extremely rare on Geminar. Believing it to be a waste to kill him, she makes Kenshi her attendant.
As the empress’ new servant, Kenshi is required to accompany Lashara to the Holy Land, an academy where Sacred Mechanoid pilots hone their skills. His arrival attracts attention, but Kenshi is unaware that something sinister is brewing within the academy and it could plunge the entire world into war.
The overall story line of this anime starts a bit stereotypical, but the development is excellent.
Not to mention that the main character is an overall bad ass with a kind, although a little too innocent, heart.
Although sometimes a little cliche, this anime is found very enjoyable and one is left with other regret there is not more of it!
As a personal bit: WAHANLY IS THE BEST! 😛
Isekai no Seikishi Monogatari was my first time watching an OVA series that comes out every month rather than every week. As such, I was not prepared for the gnawing impatience I felt at the end of every episode.
At first I wasn’t really absorbed with this series and just started watching it while waiting for one of my downloads to finish. However as the1st episode progressed, I slowly found myself getting drawn into the story. The basic storyline wasn’t anything new. It had the same premises as some other fantasy series with the main character getting thrown into an unknown world in order to fight the villain. However the other elements of the series helped bring the story to life.
I thought that the art was very well done and really brought out the attractive aspects of nature and the wild. While watching Kenshi out in the open, I found myself wishing to be in his shoes in order to feel the wind in my face and the grass beneath my feet.
The op and ed for this series wasn’t anything too special. Both pieces of music fit the series and was enjoyable to listen to. However they weren’t anything people would go nuts about. The voice acting for this series was well done. All the voice actors brought their characters to life and carried the characters’ feeling across to the viewer.
Being of the harem genre, the female characters were very diverse in terms of personality and looks. However unlike other harem series, I actually found myself liking all of the main female cast. Many series have at least one female lead who I just can’t stand, whether it’s because they’re all whiny because they can’t get their feelings across or because they’re insecure about themselves. In this series I found myself laughing at all the comedic situations between the female characters and Kenshi and didn’t find myself displeased one bit.
Kenshi was also another reason why I enjoyed this series. (Maybe it’s because I recently started watching School Days and quickly got tired of Makoto’s unappealing character.) Anyhow I really enjoyed Kenshi’s confident and bright personality. He started out in the story as a strong protagonist and ended the story as a strong protagonist. He didn’t really have to grow in character because he was already a likable character from the beginning.
With many harem series, I usually find myself cursing at the last episode if it ends in an open ending. However with this series I thought that the ending actually fit and didn’t resent the producers for not choosing a concrete female lead for Kenshi to end up with. This is probably because romance was not the main point of the series. You could tell that many of the female cast had feelings for Kenshi but the way the story unfolded, you never really expected for Kenshi to become lovey doey. This series was mainly focused on the comedic situations between Kenshi and the other characters with the mecha fighting thrown in as a bonus.
This series was very enjoyable for me to watch and I never felt like skipping ahead in any of the episodes. Rather, I felt that the episodes were too short as I wanted to see more of Kenshi. Isekai no Seikishi Monogatari was a great series for me and I would wholeheartedly recommend anyone to watch it
This does contain some spoilers, but it will not impact the series in any way. Anyone who has not watched this should not have a problem with the spoilers as it does not reveal any plot twists, etc(except episode 1, but what the hell, it’s episode one haha).
The graphics and battles were top notch. However, the entire series was literally a land fill of fillers all the way until at least episode 9. Episodes 2-9 were just Kenshi meeting girls and getting into harem themed situations. Granted the situations were funny at times, it got repetitive, dragged out and ultimately ruined the entire series for me.
All the plot holes also tested my patience with this anime. I never drop animes but this one seriously had me contemplating on it. An example would be why? Why is the Holy Island getting attacked? Because of your ‘ideologies’? Would you at least take some time to tell us instead of bombarding us with panties and breasts? Also, as would be expected, no one dies in this anime. They just keep on coming back and back and back and back.
Another one would be that the timing on the music is horrible. Though the music (BG music) itself is not bad, the timing is horrible. Did I just say that twice? Well let me say it again. The timing is absolutely horrible in this. I could tell when they tried to make a ‘situation’ seem serious or dire only to be ruined by the music. An example of this would be on episode 13 when the students of the Holy Island are trying to take back the land. There’s some fluffly music playing that could easily be used during one of Kenshi’s Harem situations. Everyone is laughing and having a good time even though it’s the last episode. Instead of laughing and smilling, at least try and keep a serious face.
I can say after finishing this OVA series that there was literally no character development. The only ‘development’ I saw throughout were characters becoming tsundere and just becoming an outright harem.
For me, the only time this anime for me gave off a sense of seriousness was when Kenshi’s seikijin went black and white and went berserk. That and in the beginning of episode 1 when Kenshi was on the swan trying to kill that princess. Not even the climax could be taken seriously. Kenshi wasn’t even breathing hard during the final battle even though Gaia was many times stronger then him and he wasn’t even trying his hardest until Chiaia threatens to take away his gems??? What the hell? He had a harder time compressing his sword then fighting Gaia. Mediocre until the very end.
After the Holy island is taken over, for some reason NO ONE cares that all their material possessions, everything they’ve owned is being pillaged by the thieves and all they care about is catching Kenshi’s attention and being infatuated with him. Completely ridiculous. I know this is an anime, but can you at least make an attempt in trying to make the situations they’re in at least seem realistic, having some type of impact on the characters?
This anime, barely being able to keep my attention I may have skipped on some points but I’m pretty sure I nailed the major flaws in this anime. Giving this anime even a 5 would be too much. I rated this a 2, which seems just about right when the plot is a complete mess, riddled with plot holes and too many fillers. I seriously can not recommend this to anyone. However, if you’re into harems and don’t give a damn about plots or character development, then go ahead and watch this train wreck of an anime.
1: Uchuu Senkan Yamato 2199
English: Star Blazers: Space Battleship Yamato 2199
MAL Score: 8.35
In the year 2199, Earth faces its greatest crisis. Due to unrelenting bombings by the alien race known as “Gamilas,” the planet can no longer sustain its inhabitants. In exactly one year, humanity is set to become extinct.
In desperation, the people of Earth establish the Earth Defense Force, their last defense against the power-hungry Gamilas Empire. However, humanity finds a glimmer of hope after receiving a message from the mysterious planet Iscandar, which offers them a device that would restore Earth to its former glory. With salvation in sight, the Earth Defense Force calls on the prolific Space Battleship Yamato and swiftly assembles a crew to make the 168,000 light-year trek to Iscandar and receive their aid.
Among the crew are young officers Susumu Kodai and Daisuke Shima, along with several other newly promoted leaders, all under the command of the distinguished Captain Juuzou Okita. Forced to learn how to handle the ship’s innovative technology while dealing with the onslaught of Gamilas fleets, the inexperienced cast of Uchuu Senkan Yamato 2199 must summon every inch of their resolve to survive the many hardships aboard the Yamato and complete their mission: to save humanity before it’s too late.
In recent times, one becomes wary when they hear the word ‘remake’ or ‘reboot’. Audiences have reluctantly witnessed so many beloved series, stories and characters get butchered in misguided and unnecessary attempts to be recreated.
Thankfully, I am happy to say that Yamato’s 21st century rebirth is done faithfully, respectfully, and masterfully.
First, there is the story (9/10). Yamato’s story is timeless – the people of Earth are fighting back against an alien threat to bring their planet to slavery or extinction. Humanity’s last hope lies in the battleship Yamato, its crew, and a mysterious technology brought to mankind from a distant alien race of people called Iscandarians. Their destination – lightyears away, on the planet of Iscandar. In their path lie many obstacles, and every one a piece of the story and the puzzle. In this respect, Yamato’s story is not difficult to understand, and is something you can appreciate at any age in any time. There are many developments and nuances that shape the story beyond its simple premise as the show develops, however. For the most part, it faithfully follows the original plot, and while I can’t comment on specifics, I know enough to say that with confidence. It is not overly complex – there are also many things that are left to the imagination for the sake of not boring the audience. If you accept them for what they are and don’t convolute them, it is, for the most part, flawless. This is, after all, a fictional universe.
Now for the art (10/10). There has been some fuss over the stylistic changes from the original Leiji style of Yamato to the remake. However, I find them to be a perfect blend of the retro style and modern style – which still brings an incredibly refreshing artistic flair to Yamato that isn’t seen anywhere today. Even if one were to miss the original style, I think it would be impossible to truly recreate it exactly unless you had all the original animation staff, and that is too much to ask for a 40-year old series. Nobuteru did an excellent job of revisiting the style of Leiji and bringing it to a modern audience.
The animation is absolutely stunning. It’s quite obvious there was a high budget for the series, and they use it in all the right places. Let’s be honest – in the 70’s, many of the technical challenges that came with animating epic, large-scale space battles were difficult to tackle with the technology of the time. While many are impressive, it’s easy to see where they struggled to achieve their true vision. In 2199, the ships are 3D models, and CGI comes heavily into play during battle scenes. There was a time that this spelled bad news for mixing with 2D animation, when CGI suffered from a “video game cutscene” syndrome. But with today’s technology, 2199’s CGI is absolutely stunning, and blends beautifully with the show and the backgrounds. Every ship is masterfully crafted and detailed, and every nuance of the ships and the weaponry is nothing short of perfection. The excitement of every battle scene leaves you speechless. Fans of spaceships, fighter jets and miscellaneous mechanical things will be filled with nothing but glee.
The character and 2D animation is equally as important, and is treated that way. There’s a lot of expressiveness in every character, and it shows. There’s a bit of fanservice and moe here and there, but nothing overdone. Yamato takes itself seriously when it has to, but it also has a bit of fun when it’s appropriate.
The music and sfx (10/10) adds another layer of immersion to the world of Yamato. The soundtrack is a lot of re-recordings of original Yamato tracks, with that 1970’s sci-fi trumpets and backing vocals that many may remember fondly. If not, it’s something that you hear very rarely these days, and is absolutely perfect for this series. It’s enough that the opening is one of those songs you just can’t skip – the rest of the soundtrack is equally inspiring.
The sound effects, voices and ambiance is also well done. My favorite bits are definitely the sounds of the ships and the weapons during battle. There’s nothing quite like hearing a flurry of lasers, rockets and explosions – and of course, the awe-inspiring Wave Motion Gun.
The characters (9/10) of Yamato are stunning examples of common archetypes. There are brave heroes, loyal comrades, tragic villains, and everything in between. There is a very large cast of Yamato, so I won’t dive into every character, but while many characters may seem stereotypical at first glance, Yamato never attempts to clearly define the difference between good and evil – at times, you will sympathize with the enemy, and you will question the motives of the heroes. It’s one of those important aspects that helps separate the wheat from the chaff in this aspect. Still, there is a very classical story at hand, and with it come classic characters. But they are not as hollow and predictable as one more cynical may come to believe.
Overall, there is not much more to say. I gave enjoyment a 10/10 because I always found myself looking forward to the next episode of Yamato – and when they came (the waits were quite long for those following the series release), they were over so soon because I enjoyed every moment.
It is quite clear that the creators of Yamato 2199 had great respect for the source material and made every effort to craft a remake worthy of the name Uchuu Senkan Yamato. And in every aspect I would say they succeeded, and brought a story that deserves to be retold to a new era, taking advantage of the tools they have today that its original creators did not to remake Yamato in its full glory. And although the eye-candy visuals of space warfare are a spectacle in their own right, Yamato 2199 never loses sight of the story it is trying to tell and the cast that we want to root for, which is where many remakes of this era falter.
This is a very rare and important piece of animation history – one that I believe deserves to be viewed and appreciated by everyone. I would recommend this series to absolutely anyone, even if they are not fans of sci-fi. If you want an example of a remake done right – this is it.
Overall this show was an enjoyable watch, and one can sense that a lot of love and care was put into it. For those reasons, this is a very painful and disappointing review to write, but I feel it might be necessary to “warn” potential viewers about some elements of this series that are problematic. Specifically, the plot.
I understand that this is an extremely popular and influential franchise, especially in Japan, and I also do agree that this is a very well-done remake.
However – there are SEVERE issues with the plot of this series, issues that I feel are glossed over because of its “sacred cow” status in anime circles.
SPOILERS BEGIN HERE – do not continue reading unless you’re fine with that.
– We are expected to believe, and major elements of the plot revolve around, the fact that Yuki, a human born on earth, looks virtually identical to the royal princesses of Iscandar, a planet more than 100,000 light years away, to the point of being mistaken IN PERSON by those familiar with the princesses, to be one of them; that she coincidentally was involved in an accident one year ago that wiped her memory, and coincidentally makes it appear that she may be an alien that appeared one year ago on Earth; and that there is no proof that she is an Earthling because both her parents are dead and there are apparently no individuals who knew her on Earth well enough, except her parents, to confirm that she was in fact living on Earth for more than a year. This entire subplot, which groan-inducingly becomes a MAJOR plot device later in the show, is one of the most suspension of disbelief shattering things I’ve ever seen. I am at a complete loss as to how anybody can swallow this and call this particular subplot anything more than contrived.
– At one point, certain crew members stage a coup/mutiny in order to enact a plan to move humanity to a habitable planet that the Yamato finds. Not only is this illogical in the long-term – what prevents the Garmillans from simply subjugating that planet as well? – but they stage this insurrection before the planet is even scouted. Perhaps these crew members, one of whom is considered one of the more intelligent individuals on the ship, should’ve waited for more detailed reports on the feasibility of human habitation before initiating a violent mutiny. Bonus points: this plot point could’ve been interesting if the planet was indeed fit for habitation. It is not – it is apparently currently home to massive killer insects.
– Once the Yamato reaches Garmillas, the main antagonist, Desler, executes his secret plan: he flees the capital of Garmilas and then drops part of a colony on it. The problem with this plan is that there is no conceivable reason to do this. What POSSIBLE benefit does he gain from performing a colony drop and destroying the Garmillas capital? One could say “to destroy the Yamato” – is his plan then predicated on the Yamato deciding to dock at the Garmillas capital? In fact – *why* did the Yamato ram into the capital palace in the first place? Why not use the Wave Motion Gun to destroy Desler’s Wave Motion Gun instead? Is Okita’s plan to storm the center of a galactic empire with a strike team of, at most, a few dozen men led by Kodai, and somehow emerge victorious?
– Desler is killed when the Wave Motion Gun backfires and his space fortress is destroyed. However, he later turns up to ambush the Yamato in his flagship that is powered by another Wave Motion Gun. How did he survive the WMG’s explosion? Where did his new flagship come from? Why did nobody notice it? How did it reach the Gate before the Yamato? None of this is ever explained. Bonus Points: Yuki, who was ejected from an airlock and is mere METERS away from the exploding fortress, survives – though the blast not only clearly destroys the fortress, but completely incinerates a nearby battleship that is presumably more than a few meters away. Never explained. Forget about these little details when Kodai and Yuki get a great, emotional, romantic reunion scene in space.
– The Yamato reaches Iscandar and discovers Mamoru had made it there after a ship carrying him back to Garmillas crash landed there instead. Again, there are too many plot contrivances to even discuss them all. Why Mamoru specifically? Why not a human presumably captured in the MANY skirmishes the Garmillans have already had with humans? In a journey of more than 150,000 light years, the ship happens to crash literally one planet over from Garmillas? Why did the Garmillans need human samples? Having transported those samples over such a vast distance, only to have them crash land one planet away, did they then respond by saying “Well, that’s a bummer. No need to investigate and see if there were any survivors.”
– The timeline for Mamoru, the core of the Cosmo Reverser, arriving at Iscandar is at most later than the Yamato setting sail. Meaning that Starsha was challenging the Yamato to make an unprecedented journey across galaxies for something that doesn’t actually exist yet.
– Iscandar apparently has a population of three (one after the other two sisters leave for Earth). Why this advanced civilization of superior beings would expend 66% of their population on the off-chance that the planet Earth, which at that point was no different from the countless other planets subjugated by the Garmillans, could potentially reach them, is never explained. Having invested 66% of their population (No, I’m not going to get over that), Starsha is then unsure if she wants to give them the Cosmo Reverser. She then gives it to them though, despite the fact that those in power back on Earth are shown to be corrupt politicians who initiated conflict with the Garmillans, and will presumably abuse the godlike power they now possess because humanity as a whole has not improved in any significant way to warrant giving them this power. Oops.
– The infighting between the Garmillans is drummed up to eventually become a major plot element. Too bad we never hear anything about it again or get any kind of meaningful resolution.
There are more (unfortunately, *many* more) plot points/devices that could be discussed, but I think the overarching point is clear: this may be a remake of an anime legend, great animation, great soundtrack, but there are major issues with the plot that simply cannot be ignored or dismissed.
Is it a fun watch, and an interesting talking point for discussing the history of anime? Yes. But the illogical, contrived, and occasionally frustrating plot prevents it from being a great watching experience in its own right. Viewer beware.
Space Operas are very rare now a days in the anime industry. Just as the quality of mecha anime and it’s audience has been downgrading and declining in favor of slice-of-life, ecchi and harem genres, space operas were always being overlooked at. After almost at least 40 years, one of the space opera classic during the 70’s was given a chance to have a remake in order to introduce the series and gain a wider audience in today’s anime community. But does the show itself succeed? Let’s check it out:
Just as the title implies, the show is set during year 2199 and the once blue, green and thriving with life planet earth has been reduced to a radioactive wasteland because of the Garmillas aliens which forced the remaining population to hide underground. However, a friendly alien race from the planet Iscandar contacts the human race and gives them blue prints to build a powerful space battleship capable of retrieving a device to clean planet earth before humanity disappears. As they resurrect the long sunken ship yamato, they then applies the alien technology that they got from a messenger that came from Iscandar, transforming it into one of the most epic and greatest ship that will venture through the sea of stars to save their home planet. Enter Space Battle Ship Yamato.
Now i know most of you will think that the premise is pretty similar to Macross but the latter was aired during the 80’s specifically after the success of an another behemoth called Gundam while the original Yamato was aired during the 70’s. So therefore Yamato was the one who influence Macross. As i already said from the synopsis, this is a light years journey to Iscandar from planet earth and it will take a year in order to get through Iscandar and they also must retrieve the device in immediately before planet earth is forever doomed. As such we will encounter many kinds of phenomenon and typical issues from this long journeys such as trust issues, food shortage and of course battling their enemies, the Garmillans as they opposed the ship to reach Iscandar. Tactics to fend off enemies were heavily used and while the tactics many not be that good as LoGH, it still managed to give the feeling of unpredictability of the battles, plausibility of the tactics that were used and you will always be in the edge of your seat with the epic space batles that were occurring in your screen and backing it by great animation and intense old school soundtrack. The series also dealt with mature themes such as racism, genocide and politics. There is also fanservice in this series. Oh, i didn’t mention that? But don’t worry the fanservice in this series is not like in your ecchi show where it’s distracting. The fanservice actually have some subtility. For the most part.
The characters were no slouch either. They were interesting and likable for the most part and the character interactions were well-written and probably the main forte of the characterization of the show. The way the Yamato crew interact is just fun to watch. Oh sure there are some characters like our main protagonist, Susumu Kodai who sometimes acts like an angsty teen and some characters do too but they don’t exaggerate to the point that it become annoying. They still act accordingly to the situation and maturely to many situations. Many of the stuff that happens throughout their journey have challenged the Yamato’s crew beliefs about the war and this anime is also not entirely black and white where humans are automatically good, and the garmillians are automatically bad. There are both good and bad people from each side and some good and bad decisions and deeds that both the Humans and Garmillians have made. Okay, maybe i’m saying the obvious but it’s still worth pointing that out. The female cast are also strong individuals for the most part so don’t worry about some very useless ass female characters that you mostly see.
Overall, the story is great and the characters were interesting, likable and fun to watch to. If there are criticisms that i would give is that there are some more potential that the series overlooked. With a good world building that the show created, that show could have last in more than just 26 episodes and that is why some scenes in the series felt rushed, some characters are really lacking for being fleshed out and development, and there are some very questionable decisions during the end BUT it didn’t really detract for my own personal enjoyment. The original Yamato is also only 26 episodes and most people would rage quit to a series which is over 30+ episodes anyway so 26 episodes is still fine as it’s still be able to tell a great story in a series which the scale and world building is pretty big.
The studios that brought to us the animation are studio Xebec and AIC. The animation, the crisp of the characters and design, heck even the CGI are just fucking stunning and beautiful. Although some might say differ about the CGI but i didn’t really find any problem with it as it really works perfectly to the scenery of the series and the CGI only made the battles more epic and engaging. The director is Yutaka Izubuchi who is known for directing and creating RahXephon. He was also responsible for the character designs of Gundam Wing. Hideaki Anno worked on the story board. If you didn’t know who he is then you’re probably living in a cave. Akihiro Enomoto whom have worked as the key animator in Char’s counterattack also worked on this anime. Anybody here whom have watched Char’s counterattack knows that the battles there were simply one of the best mecha battle and the animation was just absolutely gorgeous. Akihiro also brought his forte into this series as the key animator in most episodes so therefore the battle scenes, as i mentioned before, were engaging, terrific and epic like Char’s counterattack. It feels like real space ships are really battling it out. As most of the budget were used in the CGI and the battles, the character movements felt really poor in many episodes but you know what? Most of the episodes they spend were sitting in the ship anyway. Just trying to point that out.
Catchy and old school. Seriously, the opening song and the first ending song were retro songs during anime of 70’s but it really fits perfectly well during the series(There are several different versions of the opening. The first opening is the classic version while the other version is still the same only much more modernized). I really appreciate how they decided to bring a retro song as an opening to a modern remake now it’s stuck to my head and i can’t stop humming it whenever i’m taking a shit or taking a shower. The OSTs that was used were also very catchy and old school but still felt intense during the battle scenes. The voice acting is also very well done. Ono Daisuke as the voice of Susumu Kodai who also voiced Sebastian from Black Butler, Kuwashima Houko as the main heroine, Mori Yuki who also voiced Tomoyo Sakagami(Clannad) and Clare(Claymore), Yamadera Kouchi as the main antagonist, Lord Desler who also voiced Spike Spiegel from Cowboy bebop, Otsuka Houchuu as Shiro Sanda who also voiced Jiraiya from Naruto and other famous VA’s. Aside from the the opening songs, the OST’s while catchy doesn’t really warrant to be listen on it’s own which kinda of a shame.
After watching LoGH and this, i am now craving for more space operas. This anime has many things that i could hope for. Engaging story, fun and interesting characters, beautiful ladies, epic and compelling space battles with great animation and a satisfying ending. It’s really a shame that despite being a remake of a classic with great animation, anime like these is still being overlooked at the anime community today. Hopefully in the future, more anime fans would be able to watch this series and this is one of the primary reasons why i’m doing this review right now. Whether you think this anime is great or not is still up to you of course but if you find this review helpful(which i doubt) and decided to watch the anime and think the anime is good, then please do recommend this to your friends. Then maybe there is hope for more space operas in the anime industry and for this sub-genre to completely not die in the anime realm. Well, it really won’t because of LoGH(Although there is also only a handful of people who have watched this) but you get my point anyway.
Story: 9/10 – Epic and engaging journey to save planet earth.
Characters: 8/10 – A great cast and fun characters to watch to. Character development is there but lacking a bit due to the length of the show but characterization is solid.
Animation: 9/10 – It’s Fluid in the battles and the CGI is good.
Sound: 8/10 – Nostalgic old school music and soundtrack.
Enjoyment: 10/10 – Never failed to entertain me and didn’t make me bored while marathoning the whole thing.
Final Verdict: 9/10 – Amazing anime and a great space opera.
Did YOUR favorite anime make the cut? Let us know in the comments below!
1. Uchuu Senkan Yamato 2199
2. Isekai no Seikishi Monogatari
3. Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 2nd Season
4. Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki
5. Sora no Otoshimono: Project Pink
6. Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki: Omatsuri Zenjitsu no Yoru!
7. Date A Live: Date to Date
8. Aa! Megami-sama! (2011)
9. Aa! Megami-sama!
10. Seitokai no Ichizon Lv.2: Watasu Seitokai
11. Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 3rd Season
12. El Hazard: The Magnificent World
13. Bubblegum Crisis
14. Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 3rd Season: Tenchi Seirou naredo Namitakashi
15. Amagami SS OVA
16. Ai no Kusabi
17. GA: Geijutsuka Art Design Class: Aozora ga Kakitai
18. Riding Bean
19. Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai: Relay Shousetsu wa Ketsumatsu ga Hanpanai
21. Armitage III
22. Kyuuketsuhime Miyu
23. Anata dake Konbanwa
24. El Hazard 2: The Magnificent World
25. Candy Boy Episode: EX01 – Mirai Yohouzu
26. Tenchi Muyou!: Galaxy Police Mihoshi Space Adventure
27. Megazone 23
28. Asobi ni Iku yo!: Asobi ni Oide
29. Bastard!!: Ankoku no Hakaishin
30. Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukunai Episode 0
31. R-15: R15 Shounen Hyouryuuki
32. Nekogami Yaoyorozu: Ohanami Ghostbusters
33. Megane na Kanojo
34. Green Legend Ran
35. Maken-Ki! OVA
36. Ai no Kusabi (2012)
37. Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 4th Season
38. Parasite Dolls
39. Tenchi Muyou! Ryououki 5th Season
40. The Hakkenden: Shin Shou
41. Shukufuku no Campanella: La Campanella Della Benedizione
42. Battle Athletess Daiundoukai
43. Detonator Orgun
44. Gall Force 2: Destruction
45. Black Magic M-66
46. Mahou Shoujo Pretty Sammy
47. Gall Force 3: Stardust War
48. Burn Up! W
49. Sol Bianca: Taiyou no Fune
50. Sol Bianca