In the year 2010, the Japanese radio industry is in decline. To reverse their flagging ratings, a station staffed with perennial losers makes a daring gamble: to hire the industry's first android on-air host. Maico is cute, but it will take more than novelty to win over the fickle audience -- especially with a crew as inept as this one.
Android Ana Maico 2010 is another of those odd little shows that I seem to have a talent for finding. The anime is based on the Maico 2010 manga series by Toshimitsu Shimizu (who also wrote the original manga for 801 T.T.S. Airbats and Red Prowling Devil), which ran in Young King Ours magazine from 1997 to 1998. The anime was aired on WOWOWs Anime Complex omnibus block alongside The Adventures of the Mini Godesses and Neoranga from April to Septemeber 1998.
The story is very simple. Japanese radio is on the decline, so the various stations are trying to think of new and exciting methods
to get people to tune in. Enter Maico, Japan's newest radio DJ - with a big difference. Maico is unlike other DJs as she is a state-of-the-art android, and her first appearance in the anime makes this fact very clear.
As Maico is a very new android though, she has had very little contact with humans. Because of this she doesn't understand concepts like love and hate, friendship, rivalry, etc. Her work as a DJ has the dual purpose of boosting ratings and hopefully bringing her one step closer to being human. Also, because she's very new, she has no knowledge of how a radio show is produced.
The story follows an episodic format for the most part, something which works well with this type of show. Many of the episodes are fairly lighthearted, and it's only the last few episodes that stray from this format, being more serious in tone, and following on from each other.
The art for Android Ana Maico 2010 is very derivative of it's manga predecessor, and rather dated at that. The character designs definitely show their age in comparison with some of the more "realistic" designs we see today. Animation is also fairly mediocre, and is sometimes jerky and uneven. Also, because almost all of the show takes place in a radio studio, the animators never really got a chance to show what they could do.
Sound is another area where the series shows it's age. Unlike the animation though, the fact that the series is about a radio show actually helps with the sound, especially as the various effects and noises used in the radio broadcast need to be inckuded in the anime.
There's not much to say about characters. The only real character worth mentioning is Maico, as the rest of the cast were no more than a collection of glorified side characters. However, the cast as a whole were enjoyable enough, especially with their various antics and shenanigans.
As I said at the start, Maico is a bit of an odd show, but it's not a bad one. It does fall short in comparison to the manga, as a lot of the more serious elements were purposely removed (Maico originally being built as a sex doll for example, never gets mentioned in the anime). It's a quirky little series that may or may not appeal to people, but your enjoyment of the show will probably depend on how seriously you take it.
This is an older show that has yet to be released in the US, I watched it subbed.
Story: There is not much of a story; it is just them recording a show so it all feels like a bubble. Except for a few episodes at the end, the show is also all one-shots and it is enjoyable at that.
Art: The entire show save for one episode all take place in one setting and besides the main cast there are few extra characters, so with this you figure there would be a lot of detail. You would be wrong the animation and art style are plain.
The opening and ending themes are okay with the first opening just being sounds and the ending being normal romantic ending song. The voice acting is done well you fell the seiyuu get to know their characters and grow with them. Finally, the background music is pleasant much like the show.
Characters: The characters are the focus of the show and how they interact with Maico who is herself a normal robot trying to understand humanity and in that, they succeed. A few characters get are annoying at the beginning but as you get to know them, they grow on you.
Enjoyment: This was a fun show, I enjoyed watching Maico try to learn and the end was very out there yet worked.
Overall: This series takes place in two years from the time of writing this(2008) and we are yet to have androids so this show is fun but bad in art, enjoyable yet plain. A solid 7/10.