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Nov 7, 2022
“Ai to Ken no Camelot: Mangaka Marina Time Slip Jiken” is a shoujo fantasy movie (it seems that it’s not an OVA) based on one of the books in the “Mangaka Marina” series of novels. While its art, animation and music are passable, the story is rushed and full of confusing narrative decisions, and the dialogue is hackneyed. In addition, the characters suffer from a lack of background information that would help the viewer empathize with them and differentiate them from one another, making this a forgettable watch.

“Mangaka Marina” is a series of novels that were published from the mid-1980s through the mid-1990s. The series ...
Oct 31, 2022
Mixed Feelings
“Dracula: Sovereign of the Damned” is a 1980 TV special based on an American comic. And boy, is it “special.”

A wannabe Scooby Doo gang stalks a sort-of-reformed-but-not-really Dracula, who stole a bride offered to the devil and had a son with her. Their baby gets killed, but God later revives him, giving him an adult body and shapeshifting powers. The son has been tasked with killing his father, while the devil seeks revenge on Dracula for stealing his girl. Caught between God and the devil, what’s a vampire to do? (Mope around in a Boston cave and eat a hamburger, I guess.)

The plot, as you ...
Oct 18, 2022
As the title suggests, “Riki-Oh 2” is the sequel to 1989’s “Riki-Oh.” This OVA explores the titular character’s past and his quest to find his twin brother from whom he was separated as a child. While “2” has its fair share of gory violence, it’s toned down compared to its predecessor, and the stilted scenes, animation errors and jumpy narrative do it no favors.

Presumably, the events of this OVA take place after what happened in the first one, although it’s hard to tell. Riki-Oh is searching for his twin brother, Nachi, who has similar powers to his, except Nachi has a swastika on his hand, ...
Oct 14, 2022
Nineteen 19 (Anime) add
Mixed Feelings
“NINETEEN 19” is a 1-episode OVA about the trials and tribulations of young love that’s half music video and half story. Featuring a nostalgic citypop soundtrack, aesthetic visuals and some innovative montages and scene transitions, this OVA has a lot going for it, but it’s bogged down by the uninteresting characters and plot. The sexually explicit scenes and dialogue also make it an uncomfortable watch.

The story revolves around a 19 (hence the title)-year-old guy named Kubota, who spends his days blithely hitting on girls on the street with his friends, and working at a cake shop under a boss who enjoys grabbing his butt. One ...
Oct 10, 2022
Mixed Feelings
“Tengai Makyou: Jiraiya Oboro-hen” is a 2-episode OVA set in the universe of the game “Tengai Makyou,” but with an anime original plot. This OVA has an action-driven, although rather predictable story, and the art and character designs make it look more like an ‘80s western cartoon than an anime. It’s easy to watch, but due to odd character interactions, questionable narrative choices and an underwhelming ending, it’s not a particularly compelling one.

The gist of the story is that the thief Jiraiya has run out of treasures to plunder in his current town, and decides to travel to another area where there’s a legend of ...
Sep 24, 2022
Mixed Feelings
“A-Ko the Versus” is a 2-episode sci-fi comedy OVA featuring the 3 main characters of the “Project A-Ko” franchise in an alternate universe setting. The different setting allows for fresh insight on the dynamics between the three characters, particularly A-Ko and B-Ko (C-Ko remains annoying, but her role is less prominent here than in the previous installments of the series). The first episode is a fun, action-packed romp, while the second episode tries to make things a little too serious for comfort, and the tonal whiplash is significant. However, overall, the OVA is watchable.

Instead of being mortal enemies constantly at each other’s throats like in ...
Sep 17, 2022
Burning Blood (Anime) add
Mixed Feelings
“Burning Blood” is an aesthetically pleasing, well-produced 3-episode OVA about a high school delinquent training to be a boxer to defeat his rival. After a rocky first episode, the story becomes solid and intriguing, although overdramatic and unrealistic at times. Unfortunately, it ends on an inconclusive note, and seems to have been made to advertise the manga (which had just ended around the time this came out).

The OVA’s story centers on a high school delinquent named Ryo, whose nickname is “B.B.” or “Burning Blood,” a nickname given to him by American servicemembers who got in a fight with him a few years prior to the ...
Aug 27, 2022
“Nyancos: Hello! Our Brilliant Future” is a mesmerizingly delightful 1-episode OVA that offers a colorful glimpse into the lives of catwomen on an alien planet. The unique art, relaxing music and dreamy storytelling combine to make watching “Nyancos” a bizarre, yet comforting experience.

Separated into about 7-8 vignettes, this music-driven OVA has no dialogue. It follows the titular “Nyancos” — tall, slender women wearing sleek cat outfits and heavy makeup — as they descend to a planet in their UFOs, spend the four seasons inventing things that bring color and excitement into the world, and enjoy their success as they unwind at a cafe and interact ...
Aug 21, 2022
Mixed Feelings
“Record of Lodoss War” is a 13-episode OVA series that is part of the mixed media franchise of the same name. “Lodoss” was quite popular when it was released and influenced just about every anime in the fantasy genre that succeeded it; this series’ importance is not to be understated. However, while “Lodoss” has excellent music, nice artwork and character designs, every other aspect of this series, especially plot and character development, leaves a lot to be desired.

The gist of the plot is that a wizard is trying to resurrect an evil goddess to rule and/or destroy the island of Lodoss, and a traditional party ...
Aug 11, 2022
“Kennosuke-sama” is a short movie based on a one-shot Akira Toriyama manga that was shown in theaters alongside a Dragon Ball Z movie and another short film in 1990. Due to its length, the movie ends rather abruptly, but it’s pretty enjoyable for what it is.

This movie is about a kindergartner samurai boy named Kennosuke, who lives in an anachronistic world which combines elements from medieval and modern Japan. After school, a girl named Oden asks him out on a date, and he agrees to it, but there’s just one problem — he doesn't know what a date is. He asks his mother, who gives ...

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