So, we checked out Madlax. OMG, it's the return of Noir! Same visual style, I'm pretty sure Kajiura did the music again, and it's about babes with guns!
Madlax is a top-notch operative. She is sent into a civil warzone to retrieve a data-disc, which a group of partizans try to smuggle across a checkpoint. Stuff happens, but of course Madlax is a crack shot and saves the day. Why she needs to wear a dress when the serious shooting starts, I don't know, but it looks pretty dramatic.
It'll probably be interesting, just like Noir was -- but infallible main characters tend to get boring quickly, because there's just no danger. And Madlax can take out even a battle chopper with a short burst of automatic fire...
Next was Tenjou Tenge. It's apparently about a highschool that has been created to preserve several martial arts styles. The president of the kendo club is a really small girl -- but apparently that's just a body control technique. When the need arises, she grows back to normal 17-year old proportions (except maybe for the breasts, but hey -- it's boys anime, so...), but her clothes don't change along with her...
Two hoodlums arrive at the school, trying to 'take it over'. They start to beat up everyone they can lay their hands on, until they get stopped by the kendo club president. She throws one of the guys through the roof of the kendo building, where her sister is just taking a shower... The sister falls in love with the hoodlum, but he is embarassed.
Well... what can I say? Lots of T&A from the sisters, lots of violence from the hoodlums, and the younger sister chasing one of the hoodlums serves as 'comedy' in between the violence. Not our thing, that's for sure, through the opening sequence is pretty good: rap music with the main characters dancing to it.
Then there was Aishiteru Baby. Kippei is some sort of highschool Casanova: he has girls trailing him all day, except for his classmate Kokoro. When Kippei gets home from school one day, he learns that his aunt has dissapeared -- leaving her five-year old daughter Yuzuyu behind. Yuzu is taken to Kippei's family, and Kippei is charged with looking after her -- on pain of death, as Kippei's older sister makes clear.
Yuzu is just too cute, and holds up pretty well under the circumstances. And Kippei starts to care about his little niece: the scene in the park brought a tear to my eye.
Visual style is very manga-ish (like Maria-sama ga Miteru), which is a slight turn-off, but I expect to see Kippei transform from playboy into a responsible older brother and Yuzu being way too cute. One to watch.
But wait, there's more! Bakuretsu Tenshi, the new series by Gonzo Digimation. OMG, it's the return of Kiddy Grade!
The first episode starts off with an awesome action sequence -- something with a zombie in a big-ass mecha. All done with CGI, of course, but with the same attention to detail as we got in Last Exile.
Young Kyohei, who studies to be a master pattisier, gets hired to be the cook for a quartet of girls. They turn out to be mercenaries, and of course they're all young girls and of course they seem to have this thing against wearing decent clothes. Of course, Kyohei is taken aback by the verbal abuse he gets from them. The group gets a job, and we get some highly choreographed action scenes.
Visual style is just like Kiddy Grade (Meg is just Eclair's character design recycled), and I expect about the same depth of story -- there is probably something sinister going on behind the scenes. If you liked Kiddy Grade, you'll like Bakuretsu Tenshi.
We didn't stop there, we also checked out Monster. It's about young Dr. Tenma, a brilliant neurosurgeon, who works in a German hospital. He is engaged with the daughter of the current head of surgery, and his colleagues all look up to him.
But slowly and surely, he comes to realise that he is being used: he is being manipulated into putting his talents to work for the betterment of his superiors. When the director orders him to operate on the mayor instead of a young boy who got shot in the head, he refuses and operates on the boy instead.
The series has a realistic style. There isn't much action, nothing really spectacular happens, but we see Tenma slowly realise just what is happening around him. A really interesting series.