Hello…is anyone still there. Sorry to have been away for a while but life just got incredibly hectic after the holidays and I have not had time to do anything that was not absolutely compulsory. (T.H. White reference – if you haven’t read Once and Future King you need to…go ahead…I’ll wait).
Anyhow I have returned, not unlike MacArthur to the Philippines, with a new suggestion to fill your viewing hours. Bubblegum Crisis has long been one of my favorite anime and I feel that the time has come to share it with the masses. Not that it needs much sharing. Bubblegum Crisis, in it’s original form, is one of the seminal anime franchises. It ranks with Megaman (ロックマン) and Giant Robo (ジャイアントロボ), which ran originally in 1967. It tickles me when my students talk about anime as a new medium.
At any rate, Bubblegum Crisis tells the story of MegaToyko, a modern megalopolis built on the ruins of the original Tokyo which was destroyed by a mighty earthquake. The city was rebuilt by a mechanical constructs called “Boomers” which quickly became the backbone of the city’s labor force. However, Boomers tend to be more human than their makers intended and tend to go berserk after extended periods of manual labor. The job of securing these “mad” boomers falls to the AD Police, a special weapons and tactics unit who are specifically trained in Boomer operations. They are more or less successful in this mission but tend to take too long and cause as much damage as the berserk boomers. Enter the Knight Sabers, a group of mysterious vigilantes in mecha-suits who can put down boomers much faster and more efficiently than the AD Police. The story revolves around the current members of the Knight Sabers; Sylia Stingray, Priss Asagiri, Nene Romanova, and Linna Yamazaki, and their various adventures, both in and out of the hard suits that give the Knight Sabers their name.
Priss is the leader of the group, and the major character of the show. She is a rising star on the MegaTokyo pop music scene when not battling berserk robots or screaming through city streets at 200 kph on her motorcycle. Priss is tough, street-smart, and rocks a pair of bondage height mecha-stilleto heels better than anyone else. (Seriously…WHO came up with those shoes??)
The soundtrack of the show features a great deal of Priss performing and this is not a bad thing. It is starting to be a bit dated but, considering the original run was 1987 and the show is thirty years old, that is to be expected. The animation is good, even by today’s standards, although no where near as polished as some of the newer franchises (Ancient Magus Bride it is not). The stories are tight and have a certain 80’s flavor that I find appealing. (Hey…I’m old too). The show also resulted in a spin-off called AD Police that is definitely worth a watch, although not as interesting as the original.
I would highly recommend Bubblegum Crisis to anyone. The language is probably acceptable to most High School students. There is a bit of fan service in the form of swimming suits, lingere, and towels, but no actual nudity. Also, anyone who likes 80 J-pop, and who isn’t already a fan, will likely enjoy these episodes.
The show can by watched legitimately at the following links:
PS. I just noticed that the Amazon like above goes to Bubblegum Crisis 2040, the new re-imagining. If I can find a like to the original videos I will post. I know you can watch them on many of the”free” anime sites but I try to only post legitimate sources here.