Version 5.4 ~ Haruhi gave rock and roll to you.

12 March 2016: Revisiting Innocent Venus

Steve and Toraji
It's your own fault for only bringing a gun to a sword fight.

Innocent Venus is "pretty good," but it sort of feels as if viewers forgot about it somewhat quickly. When was the last time you even thought about this 2006 series? I liked it quite a bit when it first aired, but even I haven't thought about it much after it ended. I want to say it was at least popular enough to get licensed, but basically everything was getting licensed back then just before the crash. I see it sure didn't take long for the DVDs to go out of print, so good luck finding it now if you haven't secured a copy already.

Gora should have died this episode.

I had the opportunity to marathon all 12 episodes one day last week and still enjoyed it. I had actually forgotten enough about the series that it was almost like coming to parts of it anew. For example, I had completely forgotten how much Gora is in the show, believe it or not (and he's no less irritating now). I had even forgotten about the samurai pirate guy, and he plays a large role in the series. I was also totally wrong when I claimed earlier that Innocent Venus needing to be a longer series; it actually needed to be a shorter one.

These mecha suits aren't nearly big enough to seem powerful.

There are a lot of action movie cliches in Innocent Venus. They're all of the typical variety regarding escaping from superior forces, rescuing captives from military bases, and fortuitously dodging enemy bullets. They're presented in such a way that they shouldn't take you out of the show necessarily, not any more than when a Hollywood action star shrugs off a bullet to the shoulder so he can keep fighting a laughing European madman. But they're the sort of thing that you can't ignore for too long. Cutting parts of the story and making it a tighter six-episode OAV series probably would have improved Innocent Venus from a narrative standpoint, but it still works as a 12-episode series anyway.

Sana and Joe
Sana isn't afraid of Joe anymore.

The ending is still a little unsatisfying. I don't believe some significant questions get adequately answered, and the last scene in particular doesn't make a lot of sense to me. Still, Innocent Venus is good enough as a whole that I'm a little disappointed it's been mostly forgotten. It is an action-oriented mecha (well, powered armor, really) series starring mostly adult characters, yet I don't hear it mentioned often as contrast when anime fans complain about the so-called moé cancer. Not that Sana isn't a moé blob, because she totally is, but at least it's in the Man on Fire gotta-protect-this-little-girl sense and not in a sexualized gotta-protect-and-groom-this-potential-child-bride sense.

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