More 80’s and early 90’s OVAs and even more smoggy city shots set in the night…wait, no. Actually not a single one of those types of OVA’s this time around. Just some experimental horror, terrible acting and more boobs. Because if there’s one thing that never changes from these OVAs, it’s the presence boobs.
Vampire Princess Miyu
1988-9 – 4 episodes
Most of these OVA’s I watched I either rented out or downloaded off BakaBT (awesome website btw, especially for older anime). My general rule was to start off watching the english dub and only switch over if the acting was dreadful. Sometimes the corniness of a poor dub just added to the whole 80’s OVA experience anyway, as was certainly the case for the hammy acting in JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure. So I started watching the dub of Vampire Princess Miyu and the voice acting was so bad that the opening narration became the greatest bit of unintentional comedy I have ever seen. Just watch it. The way the guy drags out the Miyuuu gets me every time. The whole dub job remains at about the same level. I’m not sure if the actual episode was any good or even what it was about. I was too busy laughing at it.
Zillion Burning Night OVA
1988 – 1 episode
Have you ever watched that movie ‘The Princess Bride’? You know, the one with the line “I am Inigo Montoya. You killed my father. Prepare to die”. It was deliberately being incredibly stupid with its style of storytelling. That was Zillion Burning Night OVA, except I don’t think it ever realised how dumb it was being. It was quite amazing how it cycled through the cliches like clockwork, as though it was going through a checklist and ticking them off one by one. I’m not talking plot point cliches or anything minor like that. When I say Zillion was cliche, I mean every single line of dialogue. It was morbidly fascinating to watch. Even the mood changing humour I could have set my clock to. I don’t even remember what it was about, I was too busy thinking “now is the time the bad guy appears through a hole in the wall and announces “not so fast” but the main character totally ignores him oh look I was completely right”.
1987 – 2 episodes
I’ve written about Twilight Q before. Don’t remember? Maybe this will jog your memory.
I don’t have anything to add I didn’t already say in the original post. Just remember that the two episodes are stand alone pieces with no connection to each other. The first episode is crap but the second one is cool. Plus, it has a plan turning into a giant fish. Is that not reason enough?
1995 – 3 episodes
Like Twilight Q, Memories is made up of unconnected stories put together in an anthology. The best way to talk about it is to simply cycle through each of the 3 episodes.
It’s not that well known that this was Satoshi Kon’s first directorial work. Even better, it has Yoko Kanno doing the soundtrack, which gives the whole piece this feel of a mindfuck version of Cowboy Bebop. Despite being the best of the Memories collection, it’s unfortunately the one I can talk about the least because I watched this quite a few years ago now, before I knew it was part of Memories. It was only over Christmas did I finally get around to the other two pieces. So I’ll just leave it at this: if you like Satoshi Kon’s films (Millennium Actress, Tokyo Godfathers etc.), give Magnetic Rose a shot. It’s as competently put together as any of his other works.
Unlike Magnetic Rose, where you probably have to be a big stinkin’ elitist like myself to get the full enjoyment out of it, Stink Bomb is a much more accessible piece. It’s sorta Roujin Z lite in the sense it’s a comedy about a superweapon being controlled by an poor unassuming human running out of control as the military try to stop it rampaging across the countryside (I think it’s by the same director as well). The best thing about this episode is the gormless salaryman who has let this stink bomb loose across Japan, with no knowledge as to what he has done. It even works as a clever bit of social commentary as to how the cog in the corporate machine has no idea what he’s working on. Heck, the closest anyone gets to telling him what’s happening is when his granny calls out to him on a megaphone from a helicopter. But it’s not the social commentary you’re necessarily watching this for *he says, afraid he might have turned off the more casual fan*. You watch it because it’s a whole heap of fun. Then watch Roujin Z, because it’s Stink Bomb except better and with old man hackers.
The shortest and strangest of the Memories collection, Cannon Fodder plays out like an episode of Kino’s Journey. Introduce a town where they have decided on a strange system how to run the place. It may not make sense from a logical standpoint, but the real appeal is working out what the message of the episode is. A world in which the greatest a child can hope for is to be the man who fires the cannon at empty space. It doesn’t work as well as Kino’s Journey though, for one simple reason: No Kino. What Kino does is ask the questions you want to ask. Get down to that layer behind the peoples psyche and understand why they do this. Nobody in Cannon Fodder has the purpose of asking the man why he works at the cannon place. It’s not the most damning of problems, but it does hold the whole thing back just a bit.
Everyday is Sunday
1990-2 – 6 episodes
There was an episode of Gintama where Gintoki and some other bloke were sitting in a maid cafe looking very bored. They were having a conversation about something or other but every now and then they would interrupt their conversation to say “oh, I saw panties” in a rather bored yet intrigued tone, like a potato picker who notices the latest potato he picks resembles the face of a famous politician. That’s what I was doing watching Everyday is Sunday. When it comes to pantyshots, newer anime draw attention to the fact they’ve just shown you up the girls skirt. There’s that little bell chime, the camera placement and lighting highlight the shot and often zoom right in, just in case you happened to miss them. With older anime, pantyshots tend to happen almost by accident when the girl is doing a somersault. Plus they’re generally the plain white ones rather than the striped or whatever pretty patterns modern day pantyshots have.
The only anime I can think of recently to take this approach was Ride Back. Unlike Ride Back though, where the pantyshots simply happened because the physics of riding a motorcycle robot with a dress on means it’s practically impossible not to flash your underwear to the world, Everyday is Sunday pantyshots felt like it was meant to be something the viewer craved. Which made it all the more weird when, in the very next episode, as was required by law, they had a full on extended boob shot. Times sure have changed since then when it comes to fanservice. Yeah, in case you hadn’t figured out already, there was nothing worthwhile to talk about with Everyday is Sunday. But I hope you enjoyed my piece on the evolution of the pantyshot regardless.