Paranormal love-comedy ahoy! CODE-E promises 12 episodes of blushing and giggling, Tuesdays at 26:43 JST on Meetele.
It’s based on a concept by Sakaki Ichirou (Scrapped Princess) and directed by Katou Toshiyuki, who is collaborating with Studio DEEN, just like their previous show Full Moon wo Sagashite. Can’t complain about pedigree.
Set ten years from now, the story’s about 17-year-old glasses girl Ebihara Chinami, who’s just moved to a new place and is switching schools for the millionth time. She’s terrified of all things electronic, and does her utmost to keep at a safe distance, because whenever Chinami gets worked up, she radiates electromagnetic waves that wreak havoc with helpful devices like cellphones and ATM machines. After a detailed account of her trip to school, she’s guided around campus by Komatsuna Keiko, a friendly classmate. Chinami takes careful notes whenever she comes across gear she might accidentally destroy, and eventually passes by the Science Research Club, where her eyes catch those of the only member – Kannagi Koutarou. He notices the strange blips appearing in Chinami’s presence and decides to investigate by expressing an interest in her body. She interprets this slightly differently, and as a consequence most of the school’s technology explodes.
Very few are going to be impressed by the artwork in CODE-E, but the music is pretty catchy, and after the intro it was hard not to think about Read or Die. Chinami is voiced by the unknown Hashimoto Mai, but she does a fine job. Her love interest is done by Nomura Katsuhito (Seto in I”s Pure) in a forgettable harem hero fashion, but instead we’re treated to the bouncy Momoi Haruko (San in Seto no Hanayome) as the funny-haired classmate, and the sharp Nazuka Kaori (Eureka in Eureka Seven) as Sonomi, whose crush on Kannagi is likely to complicate matters. It’s also pleasant to see the teacher from Twin Spica appear as the mysterious gloom girl Saihashi Yuma, although Mizuno Risa has been in other things since then.
With its mellow pace and sweet heroine it’s hard to dislike CODE-E, and I’m curious to see if this will be a regular love comedy or take that step into paranormal Read or Die action later on. Maybe we’ll get a little bit of both, but it’s too early to tell. Wonder if I’m the only one to think “Charlie’s Angels?” at the end of the opening song.
Reminds me of: Read or Die minus cool stuff plus romantic silliness.
Guns and swords and dead people converge in the stylish new action show Zombie-Loan, running Tuesdays at 26:40 JST on TV Asahi.
PEACH-PIT is a manga-producing duo famous for their cult hit Rozen Maiden, and perhaps infamous for the earlier DearS. Which path their latest offspring Zombie-Loan takes remains to be seen, but director Nishimori Akira (Peto Peto-san) joins series composer Tomioka Atsuhiro (Vandread) to make an attempt.
Brimming with originality, the first episode introduces Kita Michiru, a weak-willed young lady who wears special glasses to disable her supernatural eyes, which otherwise allow her to see dark rings clasped around dying people’s necks. She runs into the secretly dead popularity princes Chika and Shito (with matching black rings), who persuade her to assist them in their job at the Zombie-Loan company, where they kill evil zombies to work off a debt that grants them living bodies.
The art certainly has a distinct style, and uses dark neon green with a dash of purple to bring about a zombie mood. It’s animated adequately by studio Xebec M2, having just finished up Hitohira. In regards to audio, the music goes through one ear and out the other, but they’ve scraped together quite an impressive cast, with super-seiyuu Sakurai Takahiro (Suzaku in Code Geass) and Suzumura Kenichi (Shinn Asuka in Gundam Seed Destiny) playing the boys, while Kuwashima Houko (Claire in Claymore) and Saitou Chiwa (Hazuki in Tsukuyomi) play the girls… No wait, the hat person is a boy too. Anyway, despite the very talented actress, Michiru’s voice soon becomes grating, and it’s sad to see the gang so misused; even Sakurai sounds dull.
To me this is a case of style without substance, where I’m not particularly fond of the style. There’s just nothing to set it apart from the myriad of other supernatural action shows, and as a result it’s hard to think of nice things to write, but I’m sure it’ll intrigue someone. Perhaps you like zombies?
Reminds me of: Venus Versus Virus