Review - Spaceship Girl Yamamoto Yohko

This will be a collecting point for my past anime reviews and future reviews. Please note that there will be the inevitable time references in these as they have been lifted from my old LiveJournal (I'll keep the existing ones there for now)

Review - Spaceship Girl Yamamoto Yohko

Postby mistie710 » Thu Sep 30, 2010 1:10 am

Another recent watch for me was Spaceship Girl Yamamoto Yohko, a series that seems to have gone from an early nineties OAV based on a manga, and has then been revisited as a 26 part TV anime series.

First of all, however, I should mention that it is not necessary to watch the OAV before the TV series, and I should also mention that the two stories, although they cross over and share some basic features, do not necessarily follow each other.

I saw the TV series first. The art is fairly standard for its type but is well put together for all that. The story in both versions is based around a group of four girls from the 20th century, taken forward in time to pilot spaceships in a "war" which is actually a set of preplanned battles. The pilots are perfectly safe for, generally speaking, a teleport system protects them so that, if they are defeated and their ships begin to go boom, they are teleported back to their base ship. Apparently, the theory behind it is that 20th century folk are better suited to piloting than the contemporary pilots, a theory supported by the fact that the four pilots in question, especially the title chara Yohko, are so successful.

In the TV series, the porting of the four backwards and forwards in time has awakened an entity referred to as "Oldtimer" in the series which takes great exception to the meddling in time of these folk and takes various steps to stop it, some of these steps rather extreme! Actually, the story was very enjoyable up to around three or four episodes from the end when the story appears to come to a climax, fall away to a practical end then suddenly tries to get going again with the possession of one of the four in a storyline that finishes as abruptly as it starts!

As for the OAV series, most of the charas are the same right down to the launches, though Momiji's face plaster, which is normally on one cheek but sometimes migrates to her nose in the TV series, appears to be missing entirely. The biggest difference is that, in the TV series, Momiji and Yohko were already flying and it is they that recruit Ayano and Madoka where, in the OAV, Yohko starts out as the rookie. Everything else is pretty much the same, right down to Madoka's irascible temper and huge, shiny forehead. The art is a lot less sophisticated but I believe this may be down to the years between the two productions. Unlike the TV series, the OAVs don't have much of a story plot other than their ongoing rivalry with NESS in general and the Redsnappers in particular.

The OAVs were released by Right Stuf in two volumes of three episodes, while the TV series was a fansub.
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