[In which I review] New anime, Spring 2001

Jhiday

Unrepentant Froggie
RPGnet Member
Validated User
Princess Comet (Cosmic Baton Girl Comet-san)
(43 episodes)

What's it about ?
In the Triangle Nebula (which seems to be in charge of monitoring all inhabited planets) should start the ritual ball where the Prince of Tambourine choses between the Princesses of Harmonica and Castanet... except he's gone missing. Young Princess Comet of Harmonica is sent to Earth to look for him, but her quest doesn't start very well...

This is the remake of a 60s live-action series. No, really.

Characters

Princess Comet, our 12-year-old protagonist. She really doesn't care about all the formalities of her rank, but planet Earth looked AWESOME from afar, so she's totally onboard for her mission. She's got some magic star powers, but they're honestly quite lame so far.

Rababou, her pet-thingy, is supposed to help and guide her, but he manages to get lost within minutes of landing on Earth. Oh, dear...

Her family : her father the king sleeps through half his seen, while her mother the queen is generically regal. There's also an old chancelor-type dude who just can't help droning on and on with exposition. (Comet being bored beyond tears by him is one of the most fun scenes of this episode.)

We're also introduced to rival Princess Meteor from Castanet, although she doesn't get to really do anything yet.

Production Values

Perfectly okay for this kind of thing. The character designs remind me of Heartcatch Precure, and there are worse standards to adhere to.

Overall Impression

Is this series supposed to be so depressing ?

In a refreshing swerve, when Comet shows up on Earth with no money and nobody to guide her, the shopkeepers refuse to give her any food for free, and she ends up sleeping in a park. Which is welcome, considering how boring the episode had been up to then. One might wonder what her parents were thinking when sending her there, though.

Now, there's obviously some light at the end of the tunnel, as she eventually meets the mother of two twins she befriended earlier, with the implication that Comet's going to find a roof to sleep under next episode. Presumably, wacky hijinks will be starting soon... but it's still a bizarrely sad start for a series.

Not that I mean that the series is really worth getting out of your way to watch (I don't think it's even entirely subbed). It's a kids' show with some weird quirks, and that's it.

Spoiler: Show


How many magical girl series end their first episode with their heroine starving on a bench under the rain ?
 

Jhiday

Unrepentant Froggie
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Validated User
Rune Soldier Louie (Mahou Senshi Louie)
(24 episodes)

What's it about ?

Comedic heroic-fantasy. Three female adventurers are looking for a magician to complete their party. A female one if possible, but the only one they find is a classic male lech who ain't even much good at it.

Characters

The party is currenly comprised of Merril, the quick-tempered short Thief ; Genie, the amazon Warrior ; and Melissa, the not-that-pure Cleric (Kikuko Inoue in yet another of those self-parody roles - at this point I'm not even sure I remember her ever playing the perfect-woman type straight).

Presumably shortly joining them is Louie, our title character. He ain't much good at magic (he apparently got into the Magic Academy through nepotism, and doesn't pay attention to the lectures), and spends his time drinking in towns and leering at any girl he sees. His "accidental pervert" tendencies don't help : he spends most of the episode either on the run or in jail.

There's also Ila, his fellow student who'd like to be a bit more, wink wink nudge nudge (he's totally oblivious). She's prominently featured in the ED, so presumably the writers'll find a way to keep her around despite her explicitly stating she has no interest in adventuring (much to the distress of the trio, who'd rather have her than Louie).

Production Values

It does the job, but just that. I'll also note the rather high fanservice level (it's mostly the "all in good fun" kind rather than anything skeevy, though).

Overall Impression

Hello, Slayers clone !

Okay, that's a bit harsh. Especially as I find it quite funnier than its predecessor (mostly because I like the main characters more). Still, this looks like a bog-standard heroic-fantasy comedy... including the vague hints that it'll get more serious once the real plot shows up.

I'm actually a bit curious on how it goes on : it looks like decent popcorn watching.

Spoiler: Show


There's a perfectly rational explanation why Louie has barged into Melissa's "religious ceremony" and looks like he's about to rape her. Really.
 

Stormfalcon

Just slumming
RPGnet Member
Validated User
One thing to keep in mind about Rune Soldier Louie...it's in the same setting as Lodoss, just on a different continent. Definitely worth watching, at least to get to the end to watch one of the more unique ways of dealing with a BigBad.
 

ru

temporary avatar
RPGnet Member
Validated User
As a gamer buddy of mine put it "if I were a crusading paladin-type god, I'd want a churchful of fangirls too"

It's also amusing that Melissa, rather than being the healbot, is in fact the heavy artillery. Oh and,
Spoiler: Show
it's strongly hinted that the high priestess is in fact Louie's mother, which makes her comments to Melissa of "why not just sleep with him" all the funnier
 

nargun

New member
Banned
Princess Comet (Cosmic Baton Girl Comet-san)
(43 episodes)

What's it about ?
In the Triangle Nebula (which seems to be in charge of monitoring all inhabited planets) should start the ritual ball where the Prince of Tambourine choses between the Princesses of Harmonica and Castanet... except he's gone missing. Young Princess Comet of Harmonica is sent to Earth to look for him, but her quest doesn't start very well...

This is the remake of a 60s live-action series. No, really.
So I did a wikipedia lookup and discovered it's based on a manga by Mitsuteru Yokoyama...

Which means, of course, that no matter how you describe it I envisage it as being directed by Yasuhiro fucking Imagawa, Giant Robo style.

And am saddened, because such a thing is too awesome not to exist, even though nothing could live up to my imaginings.
 

Jhiday

Unrepentant Froggie
RPGnet Member
Validated User
Hare + Guu (Jungle wa Itsumo Hare nochi Guu)
(26 episodes)

What's it about ?

Hare is a normal boy living in a quirky jungle community... and then an albino girl called Guu crashes into his life. Cue SAN loss.

Characters

Hare, our 10-year-old protagonist. He's got a tendency to ramble endlessly at times... but considering the constant assault on his sanity in this episode, that's a normal reaction.

Weda, his single mother. (And my, doesn't she look a bit young to have a 10-year-old kid ? Oh dear...) Routinely comes back drunk from village parties, and overall ascribes to the "tough love" school of child-raising.

Guu, the albino girl Weda came back with one night ("she's got no parents", which should have raised some warning flags). At first she looks diabetes-inducingly cute... but from the next morning on she drops the façade in front of Hare. But she's not merely sarcastic : her shtick involves eating stuff whole (including Hare himself twice). Her stomach is a bizarre fantasy land with tons of weird stuff... including two perfectly normal high school students who don't bat an eyelid about being there.

Of the rest of the jungle community, we only see the one neighbour yet. This is obviously the present day with modern technology (Hare plays videogames in an hilarious RPG spoof sequence), but on the other hand there are some very weird local fauna and flora. Also, "shopping" apparently involves picking bananas directly from trees, and Weda's "work" seems to be hunting.

Production Values

While the budget's not through the roof, it makes some nice use of it, with appropriately psychedelic visuals. The background music's a bit MIDI-ish, but surprisingly effective (there's some awesome comedic timing there).

The OP is a thing to behold, with a very catchy tune and even the vegetation dancing to it.

There's a weird prologue sequence, as a pregnant Weda melodramatically leaves a mansion under the rain. It's a complete mood clash with everything else (especially the OP just after).

Overall Impression

Well, that's certainly different. The sheer weirdness of it all is overpowering and makes it a compelling watch. (It helps that I share some of its sense of humour.)

I'll be honest : I've already seen the whole series and the first set of OVAs (I need to track down the second set at some point). While it never really goes anywhere (the more serious turn it takes with the eventual disclosure of Weda's background doesn't feel like much of a climax), it's still a pretty good gag series that understands perfectly well that it should never explain Guu.

Spoiler: Show


Oh, it's just a pokute.
 

Jhiday

Unrepentant Froggie
RPGnet Member
Validated User
Star Ocean EX
(26 episodes)

What's it about ?

While investigating bizarre occurrences in a remote star system, a spaceship crashlands on a planet after encountering an unexpected asteroid field. While exploring, a member of the crew finds a portal that transports him to a fantasy world, where a local hails him as the Hero of Legend...

Characters

Claude, our protagonist. Son of a hero admiral who saved the galaxy 20 years before. Daddy takes him along on his trips, but does not take him seriously (and given how the brat has yet to display any shred of competence, I kinda agree). Anyway, our "hero" is prone to fits of whiny narration that do absolutely nothing to endear him to me.

Daddy The Admiral himself seems to be a decent sort (and he's certainly good at saving his ship from random asteroids), and respected by his crew (which seems to consist of only five people, himself and his son included). However, despite him investigating a somewhat interesting plot (did someone send a death-moon to hit a planet ?), it looks like the series will focus on his annoying son's trip to a fantasy world instead.

Rena, a female elf living in the fantasy world. Mistakes Claude for the Hero of Destiny as she sees him defeat a monster with his raygun (which looks like a sword of light to her). She looks dumb as a sack of bricks.

Production Values

I was under the mistaken impression that this show had a budget, what with the decent CG sequences of space action at the beginning. However, the fantasy action sequences soon resort to still images animated by shaky-cam, and I realized that they'd blown all their cash on the first ten minutes.

Overall Impression

Gods, this is terrible. I didn't have many expectations from an adaptation of manga that's itself the sequel of a videogame, but this is by far the second worst show of the season so far. I especially appreciated the bit where it starts as a somewhat decent space opera (despite some warning signs like the insufferable protagonist), and then suddenly jumps into generic-fantasy-land. Way to kill my interest, show.

Spoiler: Show


Blur effects shouldn't be a substitute for actual animation.
 

dshaffer

Pervy Catgirl Fancier
Validated User
No, it pretty much proceeds lockstep with the sports anime formula, even with the thick coat of shoujo makeup. There's the crushing loss, two separate fights against cheaters, the works. The last episode is, as you predicted, a reunion battle with her mother, although I really did like the development of the mother as a character earlier in the series. There are two tournaments that run the span of the entire sea
son, with the first one being the regional qualifiers for the second.
I think Angelic Layer was meant more as a subversion of the sports genre, honestly. However, it plays the general plot structure close enough it's easy to ignore that.

Rune Soldier Louie (Mahou Senshi Louie)
(24 episodes)

What's it about ?

Comedic heroic-fantasy. Three female adventurers are looking for a magician to complete their party. A female one if possible, but the only one they find is a classic male lech who ain't even much good at it.
The Lodoss connection was mentioned. Which is why the entire 'louise punches things' bit is so funny. It's essentially DND in anime form, and we know how good wizards are in hand to hand fighting, right?

Princess Comet (Cosmic Baton Girl Comet-san)
Is this series supposed to be so depressing ?

In a refreshing swerve, when Comet shows up on Earth with no money and nobody to guide her, the shopkeepers refuse to give her any food for free, and she ends up sleeping in a park. Which is welcome, considering how boring the episode had been up to then. One might wonder what her parents were thinking when sending her there, though.

Now, there's obviously some light at the end of the tunnel, as she eventually meets the mother of two twins she befriended earlier, with the implication that Comet's going to find a roof to sleep under next episode. Presumably, wacky hijinks will be starting soon... but it's still a bizarrely sad start for a series. How many magical girl series end their first episode with their heroine starving on a bench under the rain?
Do you consider Kobato a magical girl show?
 

Shay Guy

Registered User
Validated User
This is the one season that's actually any good, right ?
Ah, then we're not doing this thread in-character?

So I did a wikipedia lookup and discovered it's based on a manga by Mitsuteru Yokoyama...

Which means, of course, that no matter how you describe it I envisage it as being directed by Yasuhiro fucking Imagawa, Giant Robo style.

And am saddened, because such a thing is too awesome not to exist, even though nothing could live up to my imaginings.
Heck, some of its characters probably exist within the universe of Giant Robo: The Animation. After all, it's more or less confirmed that Shotaro Kaneda's in there somewhere.

Hare + Guu
I've only seen a few bits from this anime, and none in their original form or context.
 
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