I'm having a tough time figuring out the target audience for this DVD. It's
a near-future post-apocalyptic story, filled with fantastic mechanical designs
and lots of kinetic gun battles. It's also definitely NOT for kids, being most
easily labeled an "adult anime". However, it's surprisingly chaste,
with only a few bits of nudity and one non-explicit sex scene. And yet Agent
Aika is one of the most PERVERTED things I've ever seen in my entire life.
It's a really SPECIFIC perversion, though; Agent Aika is aimed squarely
at panty fetishists. Every single female character in this series wears a microminiskirt
and tight white panties, and the camera is almost always set at ankle height,
angled upwards. This makes Aika one of the most "innocent" adult anime
I've ever seen, eschewing the hardcore sex and tentacles that anime is usually
infamous for in favor of a 50's style giggly peeping-tom sense of perverseness.
Agent Aika is like a science-fiction-action-adventure adaptation of the
Victoria's Secret catalog.
In the near-future time period of this anime, the Earth has been mostly flooded
due to an environmental disaster. Salvagers explore and raid the underwater
ruins of former coastal cities, digging up whatever valuables they can. Our
heroine, Aika is one of the best Salvagers in the business, partly due to her
liquid metal semi-sentient bustier, which in times of stress strips her naked
and forms a sort of armored bikini shell around her, letting her kick mega ass.
I can't believe I actually wrote that sentence.
Aika and her partner, the bespectacled and cute but annoying Rion, are hired
to retrieve the Lagu, which is a sphere with the power to control earthquakes,
tidal waves, and other fun stuff (hmmm... wonder if the creators of this anime
saw Heavy Metal). No good action story is complete without a slimy villain,
however, and in this case it's a creepy long-haired guy who seems to have been
inspired by Hugo Drax in Moonraker: he's gathered up a few score hot
miniskirted babes onto his spaceship, and he plans to eradicate the people of
Earth and repopulate it himself (with the help of his crewbabes). To wipe out
all the poor non-skirted saps on Earth, he needs the Lagu, and that's where
his conflict with Aika starts. Oh, and he also likes sleeping with his sister,
who resembles a pink-haired Chyna from the WWF. This anime is, to coin a phrase,
The storyline and action sequences are strictly by-the-numbers in this anime.
They're not bad, but you won't be reading any news stories in the future about
the influential plot and cinematography in Agent Aika, either. The animation
is well done, and it is fun to watch the conflict and plot unfold, in a popcorn-movie
sort of way. But then there's the little matter of the aforementioned panty
Now, this isn't just the occasional peek of unmentionables, mind you. Agent
Aika is almost nothing BUT underwear flashing! From the tour guide in the
opening scene to the hot-chicks-dressed-as-French-Maid mook attacks in a parking
deck to an aerial battle between a high-tech fighter and Aika's old MiG-21 (don't
ask), some big-eyed waif somewhere is showing her underthings. It gets to the
point where you stop gaping at the perviness and start admiring the sheer audacity
of it all, because in a medium like animation, EVERY SINGLE ONE of these panty
shots had to be planned and storyboarded out beforehand.
Kind of makes you feel sorry for those poor animators; they really, REALLY
need to get out more.
So, when thinking about whether or not you want to get this DVD, ask yourself
how much you like women's underwear. Ignore everything else about this anime:
the characters, the science-fiction plot, the backstory, even the voice acting
and the DVD extras (which, since I'm on the subject, are as skimpy as Aika's
skivvies), because none of that is really what this anime is about. If you like
the idea of a 100-minute anime where some girl's skirt flies up about every
twenty seconds, then you'll like this anime. If the idea of an endless series
of full-on underwear shots and floor-level camera angles makes you feel kind
of uncomfortable, then for God's sake don't go NEAR this disc!
Agent Aika is a harmless bit of fetishistic fluff, sprinkled with a
few interesting sci-fi elements here and there. I can't think of anything to
compare with it, which is probably a good thing. It'd probably be a bad idea
to try and get that Sailor Moon-loving girl in your Bio class hooked
on other anime with this DVD, but if you've got a dorm full of boozed-up (male!)