The 3D modeled anime is set in Year 019 of the Insonity Progressive Revolution - a future era in which mankind has evolved into a new species called Adapters. Three very young Adapter girls from Japan, China and France set out on a space adventure that will affect the rest of their species.
Never in my whole life have I been so blown away by a small yet utterly sublime and awesome little series. It's only a short little OVA consisting of 3 episodes, but it's so unknown and under appreciated! People may just blow it off as a yuri-moe show about girls kissing in space and stuff, but DO NOT be fooled by what you see! What you see in this show is a great storyline, a charming cast of characters, epic plot twists that appear in the 2nd episode, and not to mention animation that's COMPLETELY computer generated!
People may think it's
all about moe and yuri, but what this show is REALLY about is that in the year of 019 of the new age, the sun began to radiate more heat which made people's chances of getting skin cancer a lot higher. Not only that, a new "species" of humans called "Adapters" began to appear. These Adapters (all girls for some reason) have strange abilities that make them COMPLETELY impervious to human touch or contact. Unfortunately, since there are so few, they're often the subject of prejudice and are discriminated against for their mysterious abilities. Three adapters from three different countries meet in space when a space colony called Pink Coral is blown up by intergalactic space pirates. The three girls, Amuri Kakyoin (from Japan), Yunque "Suzu" Ling (from China), and Perrier La Mer (from France) meet in space and end up in a strange place called Galapagos which is where their struggles with both their external problems (albeit returning home and finding air) and their internal problems, including psychological problems from their traumatic pasts.
I've seen all three episodes. While the first episode may be a little shallow, it's definitely worth watching and continuing onto the second episode and maybe the third! The show depicts the girls facing struggles that seem uncontrollable by themselves alone, but then they learn the secrets to their strange Adapter abilities and actually put them to use! Unfortunately, it's definitely not a kids show. There is SLIGHT nudity, though not very explicit and there's definitely blood and violence, especially in the 2nd and 3rd episodes. Each episode develops one character and dives into their past, with the first episode focusing on Amuri, and so on.
But this show REALLY states how awesome it really is in the final episode! The events, the plot twists, everything! But the most common feature that all the episodes share, and the events that happen in them, is the song that the girls sing whenever they're stuck in a bad situation. The song (along with the three adapters developing a close bond with one another) has been their only support system, not just in the events currently, but in their traumatic pasts as well. It's their coping mechanism that's used when they're in pain. Each heroine experienced some type of psychological problem, but that's what makes them so unique. But there are some flaws. Some of the side characters aren't developed enough (ESPECIALLY the awesome girl from the final episode!), I think the outfits some characters wear are rather revealing (example being Suzu's stora, VERY revealing), some things weren't exactly explained clearly (example being why Suzu's arms are encased in REALLY big sleeves and have no use other than to fly), and IT'S JUST TOO DARN SHORT!! I would love to see the characters fleshed out even more.
All in all, I seriously think this anime needs more attention. It's basically a big achievement for the anime world, using computer generated animation in such a beautiful and epic manner that really stands out. The characters are so fantastic, the music is beautiful, the fights are epic, and the show is just a delicious sandwich filled with awesomeness and epicness inside just waiting to be consumed and eaten! Not only that, I think I can understand the message that it's trying to give out to the viewers: Those who are different from normal kids, don't give up. There are others like you out in the world, so try and find them. You may even develop a close bond with one another.
Amuri in Star Ocean, huh. I stumbled across this one something like 2+ weeks ago. I'm going to do this review a little differently. This was most definitely a Mahou Shoujo (Magic Girl) title, very much geared to Shoujo-oriented audiences/fans/demographic and moe fans and as of writing this those Shoujo-specific genres are not mentioned at all on this page (but should be mentioned). This is in almost no means for male audiences, I'll give you my reasoning as we go on.
Format: What # I gave it (What # others may think it is at least)
Plot: 4 (5 or higher)
Let's face it this plot was either
flimsy, or near non-existent. I will confess that I watched the first episode some probably 10+ days perhaps ago, but even with that much time passing I still remember enough of it to jump right back in for the finish. As I recall, the first episode was rather quirky, abstract (or very abstract) and it used the method of just tossing the audience directly into the middle of everything with relatively little explanation to really.. anything. Some titles somehow pull that method off, this one didn't. Only insignificant details were talked about, some significant enough to be brought up I suppose, but it really truly did nothing to submerge you into the universe it was drawing (or trying to draw) and thus no real sense of belong outside of maybe the first minute, or two. It was rather very much all over the place and this is where I think a lot of people would have put this show aside, dropped it, and never spoke of it again unless to say how boring, or inconsistent it was. I'm not that type. I'll watch something from start to finish even if it bores me. It gives me a real sense of judgement on everything I watch, which is why I do it so I can tell, or gauge, how good something was. This wasn't. Episode 2 does offer some sort of twist in the plot (if you can still call it a plot at this point), or plot advancement, but this does not really help bring a whole lot together. Things do come to an end in episode 3 and there is some kind of fulfillment of whatever semblence of a plot exists by then, and yet you can still think back to an earlier point in an earlier episode and ask yourself.. why did it have to do that if THIS happens, or is going to happen? This title is just one giant question mark. And that's not to say that it isn't understood, just that there really was no point in this show at all.. or was there? Yes there was some interpretations going on. I'll get to that.
Art: 6 (7 or higher)
This is exactly what this title is all about. Showing off a specific style of art and animation (and technological advancements). From time to time these exact type of titles do arise and this is exactly what they're for. To show how far the industry has come and what they're now capable of doing. The art and animation here seemed truly good, I wouldn't go the lengths to overrate it as spectacular, or amazing however if this were 3D and I was sitting around with 3D glasses and all watching this, I think there would have been somewhat of a better experience out of it. Nothing is perfect, and everything has room for improvements. As I was watching this at first, I recall thinking "hey this is pretty good, maybe an 8 or a 9 with art" and yet after the first episode, that started turning more into a 7 and then a 6. I started noticing that although there was consistency in the quality, it did not convey any type of atmosphere, or environment correctly and thus did not give you a sense of feeling that you were there, or that any of it was life-like at all and that quickly put a damper on it. That's really what makes me think of this as more of a PG title, despite what takes place in later episodes. Even with how good the art was, it was watered down some it seemed like to gear it toward their specific demographics. Shame. It was interesting to see some of the visuals as a means to interpret a song, or some other kind of occurrence, or "feeling" even though they were hard to notice sometimes.
Sound: 5 (6? or higher)
Music was alright, nothing too special. Did it go with the flow of the show, set some atmosphere? I guess. Not so much so that I would give this any type of praise really. There didn't seem to be any real loss of feeling, or emotion with the voice acting, however such emotion or feeling was toned out it seemed. Didn't really seem to exist at the same time if that makes sense. Lips were in sync with the words and such. Didn't really notice much of anything out of place. I think the best music in this show was in episode 1 when some mechs were launched out while in space. There was some rather strange, or even goofy music going on. Totally set a random/abstract "fun" to the scene, almost. Basically, everything else is melodic, kinda bland, but not bad. Like I was saying though, voice acting wasn't bad here, just nothing really of high notes to mention really, and not very much anything bad to really say. It just wasn't wooing.
Character: 3 (4? or higher)
This is probably the reason why the plot was so.. non-existent. Characters were pretty fubar, too, not to mention some of them didn't really play much of a part until later; if at all. I don't want to give much of anything away, but everytime an important character was introduced, they somehow made that character end up kissing the main, against both of their wills. As if by fate. The thing is this is pretty much understood as normal at this point because from what I rememeber, none of the characters ending up in this situation seem to mention, or display anything that suggests they didn't like it, or even if they liked it. It was very.. void of all feeling. This is not a Yuri show, you could argue there are some shoujo-ai undertones in it, but you could also argue the opposite. Things are pretty innocent, it's honestly hard to tell. I would just chalk that up as just another innocent-moe occurence, although I do think they try to explain this as some sort of necessary plot device perhaps.. it really didn't need to happen imo. Kinda throws the show off a bit, not that there's anything wrong with it, but if you're going to do anything like that, would have been nice if this was an actual yuri type of show, not just some haha let's make them kiss because we can. That's really what it looks like.. 'how convenient', or maybe even fate. Really these characters are pretty forgettable, yeah they're unique for the show, not anyone like the other aside from them sharing similiarities in who they are, but nothing really stands out. Feelings, or emotions have been far better conveyed in other works than what they were in here. Pretty mediocre honestly.
Enjoyment: 2 (3? or higher)
This show just didn't have much going for it. Yeah there was the good art and animation, truly; I dare say revolutionary and sure makes me hopeful for what kinds of things could end up surfacing in the future, completely original works, but even then.. yeah. Even with the way everything combined felt like a big metaphor you had to visualize and see gave this show some sort of psychological premise, but the deepest parts of that I sort of noticed in the first episode and then not really ever again after that. And it's a pity, too, because at that one moment it did feel like there was something more to everything, but it quickly fell apart. I blame the abstract-randomness distracting away from a higher understanding, but even after everything in this show, it did not really bring any real new ways of thinking into the mix. Best episode was the first, even if it was the most inconsistent I think that was really all this had going for it. If it happened to toss in some comedy, I think this could have made a hell of a lot more sense, but it didn't. The only real "fun" in this I already listed in sound. This being a Sci-fi, I can deal with some "out there" ideas because there's usually something to back it up, but there was one in particular that made absolutely no sense.. air candy. Enough said. There was one thing that weirded me out at first: Uterus. Yes. Uterus. Honestly, I don't think it was meant as any kind of vulgar meaning (hell look at the show, hello? shoujo?) rather was meant to convey protection, womb, safety and not so much the organ. I could be wrong. Like I said, randomness. This appears to be just someone's delusional and misguided view on what the future will, or could, look like while completely disregarding reality entirely. This title tries too hard to make you give a damn--and it does fail at it. In this case at the very least.
Overall: 4 (5? or higher)
Ok we get how much you liked it, but who is this show for? Like lolis? Then you might watch this. If you like Shoujo, Mahou Shoujo, anything moe.. if you are a female.. you will probably watch this. Like this? I really wouldn't know. You might be strange.. or just that simple. At the end, with everything said and done, you realize that you just watched a completely generic title with a meaning geared toward pre-teen (and maybe even teen) girls. Nothing more. Rewatch value is pretty low, so if you're wondering if this is worth the 90 minutes to spend on it, you might think it's a fair trade just to say you saw it, otherwise I'd suggest spending your time elsewhere.
Appended April 5th 2012
This has to be one of the longest anime I had ever had to wait for a completion ever, but none the less it did deliver. The story was a bit vague at best with very little explanation, but I must say the art and sound was pretty good hence the 9 overall rating. It has a very slow start in the first episode, but from the second on it was very entertaining. A rare gem to watch
Looks like I have to change my opinion about this anime.
First, let me say this. I did not like the first episode. At all. It explains nothing. It gives no introduction to the characters. Battle scenes are unentertaining. Everything is aimed at girly moe fans, with no other merit except for CG art and graphics.
That said, the 2nd episode takes a complete turnaround in terms of explaining more of the story, direction, and the background behind the main characters, and includes some plot twists to the previous setting. Its almost as if a different director took over the
project and rescued what was already started..although I'm sure that isn't so, since I can only find one director...but I digress.
Anyway, the story and characters are a little more satisfying. They still doesn't explain a whole lot, and there's too many questions raised as to why this is all happening, or what's motivating some of the characters,, but its not as distracting as in the previous episode. Artwork in the 2nd episode is even more impressive than the first. I felt like I was drawn into another world. Sound isn't as annoying as before, and fits the mood rather well, in that everything isn't as it seems. And with the twists in story and the more entertaining fight scenes, its more user friendly to a broader audience.
I definitely enjoyed the 2nd episode a lot more. I would recommend skipping the 1st episode entirely, and maybe reading a summary for it instead, but that's asking a bit too much, right? If you end up watching it anyway and hating it like I did, don't say that I didn't warn you.