The evening twilight is dyed a crimson red. A compound in the distance is engulfed in furious flames, the arising plume of smoke so massive even the heavens cannot breathe. Desperate firefighters try to contain the blazing inferno with a few squirts of their 60-gauge supersoakers (complete with refill backback), but their efforts are futile as they run out of ammo (the backpacks were reduced in size because some whackjob had complained about back pain).
A child wanders from within the flames. At this point it’s not clear whether the child is a boy or a girl, but judging from the frilly skirt, kiddy purse, and little ribbon bow on the shirt, it’s likely to be a trap. For clarity’s sake, we’ll still be referring to him using female terminology.
She’s crying. Dad? Sis? They’re nowhere to be seen. A violent explosion (most likely caused by residual supersoaker ammo reacting with calcium deposits in the construction) knocks her to the ground. The pain is terrifying. The heat is suffocating. She can’t take it anymore. She wants to go home.
“Somebody save me!” she cries out. As if purposely smiting her childish hopes, the towering stone statue of an angel behind her mysteriously crumbles at the solid foundation, falling toward her at a lethally dramatic speed. She closes her eyes in dread as her short life starts to flash before her eyes…
No wait, that’s the flash of some magical circle appearing out of nowhere. Is it the Elric brothers? Is it Hermione? Yoda? No…it’s some teenager cosplaying as that loli from that anime Lyrical Nanoha, complete with bunny ear ribbons, pompous yet conservative uniform, and a long rod she’s steadfastly grasping on to.
“I’m here to save you,” the cosplayer says. “I’ll take you to a safe place.” She aims her shaft towards the ceiling and begins to emit a pink glow that’s both warm and menacing at the same time. In a sequence likely to be more memorable than the Death Star firing sequence, the cosplayer shrieks what sounds like “DEVYINGGGG BASTAAAA!!!” as an enormous pink laser emerges that not only demolishes the ceiling, but any unwary birds, aircraft, or space shuttles in its immense wake that stirs memories of Squall’s ridiculous “Blasting Zone” limit break where he chops the world in half just to defeat a level 25 mosquito. We can also conclude at this point that since a laser was indeed fired, this cosplayer is probably the real thing, meaning that she is no longer considered jailbait internationally, but only in most countries. OH SHI-
After being airlifted to safety, the little survivor lays on her stretcher thinking about the girl who had saved her. So strong. So gentle. So cool. Staring at the cool girl’s pantsu as she flies away, the little girl despairs at her own weakness. I’m so pathetic, she thinks.
Four years later, she’s a changed girl.
Standing as tall and talented as Amare Stoudemire, we see that she’s maintained her boyish charm but has filled out quite nicely. Her petite waist is accentuated by her rockin’ thighs and shapely bottom, scarcely covered by a pair of denim hot pants (the bulge in the front of her shorts raises further speculation about the possible trap designation). It’s a shame her surely sensual ankles are hidden by the cuff of her rollerblades, which oddly only have three wheels and no rear brakes (more on this later). Subaru, we find out her name is. Behind her, a girl resembling Rosette from Chrno Crusade loads up her gigantic triple-barreled gun. This girl’s name is Imprez…wait, no…Tiana.
A screen pops up in front of them – it’s Reinforce II, as spirited as ever. It seems like Subaru and Tiana are about to engage in a field examination! Overhead, a helicopter containing a lusciously legal Hayate and a smoking hot Fate fly by, checking out the trainees. Elsewhere, Nanoha is making the final checks for the examination. The timer is started…
Tiana turns a knob on her gun and fires out a grappling hook, as Subaru catches a little underboob as she hangs onto her. As they are pulled in, Subaru lets go early and busts through a window, promptly engaging the rapid-fire sentry drones within. She disposes of the first two with dashing hand-to-hand combat moves, and needlessly yet appreciatively shows off her overwhelming firepower as she disintegrates the last drone in a blast emanating from her metallic drill arm. Meanwhile, Tiana disposes of several terrorist dummies while skillfully evading the hostage dummies. The two rendezvous on a lower floor as they comment on how well their watches are synchronized. Fate and Hayate (with that delicious hint of Osaka-ben) seem impressed.
After the commercial break, more slick drone-dispatching moves ensue. They execute a well-designed decoy play which results in a gut-wrenching, adrenaline pumping crossfire that decimates the remaining drones. They stop to catch their breath and reload while Subaru comments on how sick her moves were. As Tiana turns around to shut her up, she spots another drone hidden in a cloud of smoke behind Subaru. Subaru, watch out!! Tiana tackles her while narrowly evading the beam, and quickly runs for cover. Her foot catches onto an imperfection on the ground and twists her ankle in a sickening crunch, immediately regretting that she didn’t spend the extra 20 bucks on a pair of Nikes with patented ankle support system. She quickly recovers and fires several shots to destroy the last drone. Unfortunately, she also knocks out the surveillance camera in the process.
For the next several minutes, we’re treated to several sudden mind-changes by Tiana as she goes from “Don’t touch me! I’m fine!” to “Forget about me and go pass the test! I’ll just take the test in six months by myself!” back to “Are you going to convince me to go with you already?!!” Temperamental teens…must be the raging hormones.
Anyways, we see Tiana emerging into camera sight running rather spryly. Was that sickening crunch all just an act? She’s immediately shot down by an odd heat-seeking laser (some loli scientist must’ve figured out how to consciously bend laser beams…) but emerges again from the debris. Turns out that she’s doing some magical version of kage bunshin that’s throwing the tracking lasers all haywire – as a diversion. Subaru stands atop the building muttering to herself about how she’s going to be cool and strong like that girl that saved her, and pounds the ground amidst a magical blue haze while shouting her own magical phrase that sounds something like “WIG… GOAT-O!!!!”
From the rotating magical triangle a bridge of light extends to another building – this is the building where the main drone is housed. Tiana sends a few more bunshins to throw the laser off as Subaru’s six wheel drive kicks into top gear and careens towards the building. Ripping off some more moves from previous animes, she busts through the concrete wall and lands her furious metallic punch on the pink force field, pushing through with more fury and intensity than the first sperm to make it to the promise land. She finally breaks through and destroys the final drone. SCORE!
“We still have a minute to make it past the goal line!” Tiana says. She hitches a ride on Subaru as the two charge forward with full-time all-wheel drive. Only sixteen seconds left! Subaru flips the red switch and smashes her NOS button as the two blaze by Vin Diesel and pass the goal line at mach 5 – but they can’t stop! As they plummet towards the wall, Nanoha casts a pink holding net spell from her perch while Fate summons some marshmallow tentacles from her helicopter. SAFEEEE!
At this point Reinforce II bursts into a tiny ball of steam as she mouths off at the two trainees, one of which is flashing her ass in RII’s general direction. No matter, they’re not listening to her anyways as they marvel at Reinforce’s tiny book and wonder how anyone possesses the eyesight to be able to read it. Nanoha descends with her long socks and calm demeanor, her zettai ryouiki prominently on display. Naturally, Subaru realizes that the fully legal hottie in front of her is the same one who flashed her pantsu four years prior, and breaks down into a sobbing mess as Nanoha congratulates her on a job well done (while notably ignoring the cripple). Once again, the bulge in Subaru’s shorts provide evidence to support the trap theory.
Well, Omni had a hard time deciding whether to blog this or not, so I went ahead and did it. Nanoha is one of those shows that deserves some kind of attention one way or another. It’s actually surprising to me that such an Otome fanboy like Omni wouldn’t be all over this…but oh well, to each his own.
Anyways, this new series seems to retain all the aspects that made the previous two series so successful, such as the solid animation, good music, and fast pacing. The jailbait appeal of old has now been replaced with the onee-san appeal, one that seemed to work wonders with the Shizuru x Natsuki dynamic, so I foresee no problems with this new group. Not to mention Subaru and Tiana are a lot more spunky and much less annoying than Arika and Nina…that’s always a good thing.
Note that my understanding of Japanese is rudimentary at best, so I had to fill in the holes with my blunt insight and poor sense of humor.
So I had fun writing this one up, and while the first episode was entertaining, I’m pretty sure I would completely crack by their third and just go on a freezeflame tirade about how sh…naw, I won’t start. So, any cheap shots and baseless biases notwithstanding, I won’t be blogging or talking about this show any more!