Anime based upon the original Argentine graphic novel series of the same name.
The story follows the titular character who is a genetically engineered super-soldier; one of the creations of Dr. Von Reichter's diabolic experiments. (The fictional) Von Reichter is actually a former Nazi who conducted horrendous experiments during the second world war. He flees to South America where he continues his experiments which culminate in the creation of the "Cybers," one of which happens to be Cybersix. However, since the Cybers exhibit free will at an young age (an undesired trait), Von Reichter destroys all the Cybers to prevent a rebellion.
In the present day, Cybersix is one of the Cybers who managed to escape and is living a quiet life under the alias of "Adrian Seidelman"; however, she finds out that her survival is dependent on a special substance that Von Reichter created and thus she is forced to hunt down the "Technos," a newer generation of super-soldiers created by him, in order to survive. Unintentionally, in the process, Cybersix becomes a superhero protecting the world from Dr. Von Reichter's creations and his evil plans.
Original music was composed by Robbi Finkel, with featured lyrics written by Robert Olivier, sung by jazz vocalist Coral Egan. A full length version of the song was recorded but never released to the public.
Although surprised to find this series on MAL I'm really glad it's here as getting more people into this criminally under appreciated show is always a good thing.
This series is an adaptation of an Argentinian graphic novel, that a Canadian company picked up the rights to, and contracted a Japanese studio to animate. The original graphic novel is much more adult orientated and while this adaptation isn't exactly for kids it's certainly been toned down a bit. Fortunately enough this doesn't hamper the story.
This is one of those shows that's best to go into with little to no idea what it's about, so I'm not
going to talk extensively about the characters or story but give a few reasons why you should check it out. First of all, it has one of the most realistic female leads I've ever encountered. While this isn't so much of an issue in anime as it is in western animation, authentic female protagonists are still rather rare outside of the romance genre. In an action or superhero series authentic female characters are almost unheard of and yet that's exactly what Cybersix delivers. A female protagonist that's distinctly female, simultaneously realistic and flawed, Cybersix deals with a variety of issues through a chiefly female perspective.
Beyond the expertly crafted lead, Cybersix hosts a number of other strikingly realistic characters and a well executed story about love and loss set to the backdrop of a sleepy south american city. Stylistically and thematically Cybersix is an incredibly unique mix, there really hasn't been anything like it since, especially as far as international collaborations go.
With all that said, if you're looking for a well done and unique series with engaging and realistic characters then I can't recommend Cybersix enough.
Cybersix is definitely a strange show, not in it's subject matter but more it's history. It started out as a mature Argentinian comic series, and then was picked up by a Canadian company and animated by a Japanese company and made into a more kid-friendly cartoon/anime (to be honest I'm not really sure what to classify it as, it was animated in Japan but for the most part it's a Canadian show). But you're not interested in the origins, you want a review not a lecture, so lets get to it.
This show was first aired 1999 in Canada (and Argentina), I myself being a
Canadian born in 1994 was a young child when I first watched this show. Admittedly I came across it on youtube recently and was driven by nostalgia to watch it again. I tried to watch this show with a critical eye rather then watching through nostalgia goggles and hope the review also is free of it, but be warned that this review might be a bit biased due to that reason.
anyway, moving on.
Story 7/10 (warning, this is gonna get long): The story of the show is fairly simple for the most part, a woman with superhuman strength and agility (Cyber 6) who cross dresses as a man to take on her secret identity (Adrian Seidelman) watches over a South American city fighting against the genetic creations of the evil Doctor Von Reichter and his equally evil eight year old son José. immediately I began to see some minor flaws with this show (Critic: 1, Nostalgia: 0), most prominant being the lack of explain certain things that seem like they would be important. What exactly is Cyber 6? What was that green stuff she drank in the first episode? What is Von Reichter trying to accomplish and why does he want Cyber dead? These are all interesting questions that the show gives tiny hints at but never really offers a sense of understanding, we get that Cyber is a cyber woman but that could mean several things. And at the very last episode we finally get an explanation of the green liquid, turns out it's something she needs to drink to survive (despite the fact that after the first episode it was almost never brought up again until the end). The comic apparently explains most these question, in fact a brief story synopsis on wikipedia of the comics will give you a much better understanding of some of the minor plot points that seem unanswered yet shown through the show. But as I said with my Akira review, you shouldn't need to look it up or read the reference material, the minor and larger plot point should be weaved into the story. (I'd also like to make it clear that I have never read the comic, though from what I understand from many who have they aren't very good) Fortunately these are minor plot points that can be overlooked.
One last thing I'd like to state is something that I think brings the score for the story high then it normally would be. The ending is done well for once! Many shows (especially cartoons from the late 90's to early 2000's) always had the problem of ending on low notes as cliffhangers or a blatant "hey, if we get enough money we'll make more episodes!" Cyber 6 doesn't suffer from this, the ending subtly hints that there is the possibility of a second season yet still has a proper conclusive ending where something is actually accomplished rather then the typical "I'll get you next time my pretty!" Personally I enjoyed this immensely and although I feel the show could have gone on was glad they weren't completely counting on it by making a half-assed ending.
Art 8/10: (sorry about the overly long story section, I'll try to keep the other areas shorter) As I said, the show was animated by a Japanese company so it has anime like elements to it despite being made mainly as a western show. However the animators rather then making the whole show follow the same anime template for character designs and such that's been used in... Almost ever anime ever! (Sorry, I just hate the lack of uniqueness in many anime) They stuck to a more cartoonish approach to the characters, however the movement is just as fluid as you would expect to see in any anime. I have notice some aspects where the it seems choppy (mostly during very fast or very large sequences) but for the most part the animation is solid and the design is quite nice actually (I've seen some pages from the comics and believe they were trying to stay as close to the character designs from there).
Sound 7/10: First, the voice acting. The voice acting is strange, for the most part it's solid, fits the characters well (most of the time), and is overall fairly decent... After the first few episodes. It may just be me but it seems like the voices are off in the first couple of episodes but then get better, almost like the voice actors weren't really sure what they were going for but figured it out later, this might just be me but it's something I can't overlook. And as noted early, some of the voice just don't fit, it's almost like the actors thought they were voicing someone completely different and the voices seem ridiculously out of place, this however only limits itself to a few bit roles and is not present a lot, enough so that it throws you off a little. Also, something I feel I should state, the show was owned by a Canadian company and so the show was primarily Canadian, and therefore the original language was indeed English, meaning on the whole sub vs dub debate, there is none, not an important fact but one that I felt should be mentioned. As for the music, as with the voices it's well done but sometimes out of place, occasionally you'll get things like the music being to cheery and uplifting for the situation being used and vice versa, this problem is present quite a few times and although it does drag the score down a bit it's not enough to derail the whole show.
Character 9/10: The characters are an interesting topic, since the story (until near the end) is kind of lacking the characters are basically the meat of the show. If you're making a show that heavily relies on the characters they'd better be good... Thankfully they are, although occasionally seeming a little one beat and overly silly they are present well and given enough personality to keep the show going strong. Nothing is played over the top with them and everything is fairly subtle, such as the relationship between Cyber 6 and her friend (and male personas co-worker) Lucas. It's not played as a "Hey! Cyber! I'm Lucas and I love you! Totally! We should go out!" but rather more like a friendship with some definite sense of romantic feels between the two. Julian (a street kid who befriends Cyber) has a sad back story but nothing overdone like "I'm sad because my parents were killed by a rogue toaster," he has to do things he's not entirely proud of to keep a roof over his head but it's not done to the point where you should feel sorry for him because "we told you to!" One problem I do have that keeps the score from a ten is the villains, Von Reichter and José. These characters are evil, why? Because they want to kill Cyber 6 and take over the city. Why do they want to do that? Because they're evil. See where I'm coming from, we have villains who are villains just for the sake of being villains, we're not even given much of a reason as to why Reichter want's Cyber dead, with José we can at least get where he's coming, who doesn't want to control a city after all? But Reichter just seems to be there because he was in the comics.
Enjoyment 10/10: I'm afraid if nostalgia goggles will play a role in any part of this review, this is most likely it. Cybersix is indeed a very enjoyable show, it has plenty of everything: action, comedy, drama, romance, and all are very well done and don't suffer the problem many other shows with several aims do, such as fighting over control of the shows main focus until there is none. The show knows it's an action, and romance, drama, and comedy rather then try to replace it just help accent it, keep it fresh and keep it enjoyable, this also allows it to be enjoyed by all ages seeing as how it doesn't just cater to kids love of seeing people being punched (well in all fairness I think everyone enjoys that), but the other more subtle areas definitely appeal to wider audiences. The show is just plain fun to watch. (Well nostalgia goggles, you had your chance, hope you didn't do too much damage)
Overall 8/10: The verdict is that Cybersix is a good show (though criminally under-rated) and is definitely worth a look. It's fairly short and sweet so you can feel satisfied but not like you spent too much time with it. The characters and overall entertainment value of this show are very well done despite some minor downside that can be easily overlooked. So check it out if you don't have anything to do over the weekend, you won't be disappointed.
Regarding the comic series, if you liked the show and want feel like you want more you can always check these out. They don't have an official English translation out but you're in luck if you can read Spanish, there are also a few fan translations floating around on the internet so you can try your luck there. But be warned, the comics (from what I've heard from other at least) are not very good. They are also nowhere near as kid friendly as the show, I saw a picture that I thought was some of the weird fetishy rule 34 pics the internet loves to spit out (full out reverse pedophilia action) but turns out it was actually the cover for one of the volumes (no, not a page, the actual cover). You have been warned.
I was caught by Cybersix's opening theme when I found it on youtube one day, it looked pretty interesting so I decided to check it out...
I thought it was a cartoon and it ended up being an anime to my surprise. Though, i'm not going to take you through the history of that like other reviewers and i'm just gonna get to the main stuff. I'm also going to skip talking about the synopsis, no need for repeating that. I'll try not to spoil anything and keep it short. Expect it to be messy because i'm pretty sure I suck at reviews.
The story isn't anything
too special. It's episodic, but a lot of the episodes just feel cliche or bland for me. There's a couple really great episodes in there though, but each is usually followed by an overly cheesy or just an overall meh episode. The tone changes really hurt the experience for me. I feel like a lot of "kiddie" moments were forced in almost every episode by the network or something because it just feels so out of place. There's not really much of an over branching story but there are a few continuities. It's a very "monster of the week" kind of show.
The characters are pretty basic. You got Cybersix which is the hero, who also poses as a tra-I-mean male teacher, "Julian" during the day. You got Lucas who is another teacher. He crosses paths with Cybersix and ends up becoming her friend "as well"... it's one of those. Then you got Dr. Von Richer, who is that evil bad guy who's always in the shadows and has no character other than "I'm the bad guy". However he uses his "son" Jose to carry out his plans. He is a clone that has an appearance of a kid and acts like a kid, but isn't. He's kind of annoying but I honestly found him a bit charming sometimes. I feel they could have done much more interesting things with him, and while were at it, with most of the characters. There are a few more characters but there's not many and if you want to watch it you're probably better off not knowing to have a little more fun.
The art style is very comic book-esque and the animation is quite inconsistent. However when it's good, it can be really good. Though, most of the time it's just okay.
The sound design is pretty meh. The music is mostly always the same few tracks and can be very cheesy sounding. The sound effects are also pretty hilarious sometimes, using generic chomp sounds for Data 7 was silly.
Overall... it was painfully average for me. I don't think I completely wasted my time though. There were a few things I found interesting about it, and a couple episodes I really enjoyed. However, as a whole it just ended up being "meh".
Growing up in Canada in the late 90's, almost every kid I knew watched Cybersix. After just rewatching it, I can see why. It's got this unique Halloween feel mingled with a French/European setting that just sets it apart from most other animated shows. It's beautiful to look at, and it's painful to know how little attention it's gotten since its completion.
Cybersix is about a Genetically engineered woman named Cybersix, and her battle against the many monsters sent by her creator to cause trouble. By day she poses as a male literature teacher, hangs out with her BFF Lucas, and acts like a geek. By
night, she's an ass kicking sex-symbol that frequently visits her love interest, Lucas. It's also episodic, so you'll never have to worry about a boring arc lasting more than one episode. Personally, I was never bored.
The characters are cool, spunky, unique and likable. While the majority of the characters outside of the main four or five rarely get any screen time, they only add to the already action-packed story. Cybersix herself is one outstanding individual, being both tough and gentle at the same time. Awesome.
The music isn't orchestrated, but man that main theme is catchy.
I highly highly recommend this one! Since it's only 13 episodes, you have very little to lose. Be warned the ending is slightly unsatisfying.