What makes a film manly? Is it the intense action? Perhaps maybe the willingness to stand up to villains who spit on the essence of good morals? Maybe it is the quippy one liners? One thing is for sure, Riding Bean tries its hardest to try and be the manliest OVA around. A non-stop adrenalin rush that stops for literally nothing! Car chases, heads crushed like watermelons by gunfire, and police who just don’t understand what the protagonist is trying to do! Does Riding Bean’s commitment to making this OVA the “manliest” thing possible also equate to it being good though?
Recently while on my leave I have made an effort to watch some classic shows, ones that normally I wouldn’t take a second glance at during my usual seasonal binges for a given year. I mean with the plethora of streaming services offering large libraries of anime there is not that much drive to go out and take a chance at buying a DVD or Blu-ray of some random anime. The simpler days of buying things without much thought is gone, and so is much knowledge about shows or OVAs like Gunsmith Cats. Made in 1995, Gunsmith Cats is a spunky little action OVA that calls forth all the cheese known from the era in its action and recreates it in anime format. There have been a lot of “girls with guns” type of series being released in anime like Bee Train’s unofficial trilogy (Madlax, El Cazador de la Bruja, and Noir) and Gunslinger Girl. Yet it is hard to say that another show tackles the style quite like this. Does this OVA come off as more of a Face/Off of anime or is it more settling for a Speed 2 type of feel?
I found myself on a little OVA binge as of late! So I thought…why not make a little miniseries on OVAs. Not going into every single one of them of course, but ones that stood out to me or I feel like talking about.
The most surprising anime I have ever had the pleasure of watching was the little treat by Production IG back in 1992, Video Girl Ai. I think the first question that needs to be addressed when one watches this six episode OVA, “what is a video girl?” Well to make a long story short, it is a video of a girl pretending to be the viewer’s girlfriend in order to comfort them from numerous problems they have in their life. Or, as best said by Bennett the Sage on Youtube, for simpler terms a loneliness aid. That is exactly what the protagonist Yota is buying. And this is how this crazy romcom starts off as, but it is not even close to how it ends.