Sunday, 6 March 2011

Chii & Kira Anime Watching Club - February 2011 - G-on Riders

I get the feeling Yuki doesn't wear a bra...

Payback is a bitch, and now no one knows that better than Chii. Waking up to a screen full of abusive msn messages, it seems my choice of G-on Riders as the next title to share had the desired effect after Wild 7 drove me up the wall. But hey, how bad could a seemingly innocuous ecchi title really be? I couldn’t wait to find out for myself.

On her first day in a new school, Yuki finds herself caught in the midst of an alien attack as a mysterious interplanetary group attempt to take over planet Earth. Only Japan remains under human control and all because of the fearless Riders: young bespectacled magical girls who use their “throbbing” power to repel the relentless assaults by these advancing monsters. Mix in a potential love interest, add a dash of tricky friendships and then a sprinkle of obvious humour and you’re on course for finding out exactly what enraged my anime watching buddy.

I’m usually a huge fan of tongue in cheek shows, and I found that Nurse Witch Komugi-chan pulled off the same kind of sillyness perfectly. Unfortunately, G-on Riders attempts the same kind of over-the-top camp fun and fails in the worst way possible: trying to ram unsubtle innuendo down the viewers’ throat (pun totally intended). Repetitive episodes of the girls fighting various versions of “fancy monsters” as their breasts bounce in every direction possible become extremely tedious after 14 episodes. Whereas Komugi plays the perfect idol backed by an effective and humorous script, Yuki has to make-do with an annoying personality and the most irritating verbal-tic this side of Kanon’s Ayu. Although it could have been cute, silly fun, the show tries too hard to parody the genre and falls flat on its face instead.

It's obvious, but....
The introduction of the main protagonist Yuki has echoes of Ichigo 100%, and for me this is certainly not a good thing. When she loses her pair of strawberry patterned panties, an unlikely knight in shining armour named Ichiro swoops in to her rescue. Unfortunately for him, much of his screen time is dedicated to either the feeble attempts at returning her delicates, spying through the wall as she undresses or being punched to infinity by the man fearing Yayoi. There are many things throughout this poorly written series that have a distinctly recycled feel about them. Couple this with the numerous plot holes and distinctly predictable plot twists and you’ll see why G-on Riders received such a frosty reception from the Chii and Kira club.

Bringing the Earth to its knees with her
annoying voice
Blatantly low budget, G-on Riders starts off bearable and descends into the realms of downright dire. For me, shows in the ecchi genre should be filled to the brim with gorgeous girls. With the exception of Yayoi, the female riders fall into the “wouldn’t touch her with yours” category. Although they feature some stupendous gravity defying mammaries, the Cosprayers-esque costumes have the sex appeal of a wet fish. The “exciting” battles that could have been the show’s saving grace are nothing more than poor use of the same few cells over and over, with animated gifs demonstrating a better frame-rate.

A regular occurrence throughout the show
- you'd think a grown man would know better
The vocal cast features a who’s-who of little known talent that have few mainstream titles to their names. Instead, a quick assessment of their resumes indicates numerous low budget ecchi and hentai roles. A good job really, as each of the riders spends a significant portion of the show moaning seductively as she is placed in a compromising situation by the enemy. My biggest irritation came in the form of Pao: a catgirl-dinosaur-child with a vocabulary consisting of “cute” noises. I know this was a low budget production, but there is no excuse for seemingly dragging innocent passers-by off the street to vocalise such mediocre characters.

Of all of the things in this show that brought a smile to my face, the opening credits actually caused a giggle as I read the translated lyrics:
“Yuki, Sela and Yayoi are right now,
With the power of heart beating,
Mistakes don’t matter, see?
Go today we’ll get right by,
We won’t lose to a fancy beast!”
The less said about these lyrical atrocities, the better.

Spot the subtle reference to tentacle rape!
Primarily focussing on the main protagonist Yuki, the writers have done very little to create an endearing character. Her ditzy nature and perpetual optimism soon start to grate, especially as she remains utterly clueless about the romantic advances being made by Ichiro. Sela takes the word spunky to a whole new level, acting as a bitch to anyone that dares get close to her. For a girl so obsessed with speaking to God (yes, in an ecchi show), this seems extremely out of place. The third of the brave trio is a princess who is terrified of men. Not much else is revealed about Yayoi, apart from her personality being saccharine sweet.

Realising just how bad the plot is, there seems to have been an attempt to address this failing by inserting a metric fuck-tonne of cliché characters into the show. From sexy teacher, obligatory tsundere, shy meganekko, tomboy, maid and of course a lolicon’s dream, every kink has been catered to. Choosing style over substance, the remainder of the cast remains two-dimensional and ultimately boring. Worthy of a special mention is the perverted principal, whose witty one liners and numerous nosebleeds make him a fun watch.

Yayoi and Sela find themselves covered in
"fancy" monster goo...

Bad ecchi, such as 1+2 = Paradise and Homeroom Affairs, come with a recommendation from me because they are so terribad that you can’t help but smile. Sadly, G-on Riders is so awful that it falls into the realms of simply being shit with no redeeming qualities. The mix of fetish orientated characters may attract a handful of viewers, but they are certain to walk away disappointed. Chii, I apologise for subjecting you to this... please be gentle with your choice for the next title.

1 comment:

  1. If anyone is interested, the next title for March is Tide-Line Blue. This is Chii's pick, so who knows what to expect :p