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Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS
Compared to the earlier two seasons of Lyrical Nanoha, Strikers offers the weakest material I've seen from the franchise thus far. It carries the same flaws as the earlier two seasons with the transformation sequences (Nanoha and pals from the earlier seasons have matured, but the show still has some sequences with children, ugh...), power upgrades and "power of friendship" plot devices for characters to barely get by with beating powerful foes or getting out of seemingly impossible situations. Still, the show has its positive elements as there is greater focus on alternative worlds in this series with Nanoha being a major member of the TSAB in this series and we come to learn of shaky tensions between factions within the the bureau that are addressed.
The series comes with a much larger cast compared to the earlier seasons which is quite a mixed bag. The four new recruits that Nanoha has to train are a likeable bunch and you get to know of their backgrounds as to why they become involved with the TSAB. The show also comes with its tragic villains in this season which come in the form of Lutecia and her two companions. Also, the show adds in a touching side-plot that involves Nanoha and Fate adopting an orphaned girl named Vivio.
However, Strikers brings back one of the flaws I had with Lyrical Nanoha's first season: bringing in a shallow, irredeemable villain. This time, the season bumps up the shallow villain count to 13 with the presence of Jail Scaglietti and his cyborgs. Jail is too much of the stereotypical over-the-top mad scientist for me to care for him and the cyborgs get so little time with depth that you can't really connect with any of them. Also, a number of prominent characters from the first two seasons of Lyrical Nanoha have their roles greatly reduced in this season to either supporting or background characters, especially in the case of Yuuno and Arf who were major companions to Nanoha and Fate respectively during the earlier two seasons of the show.
If you've seen the earlier two seasons of Lyrical Nanoha and could put up with their flaws, you are likely to watch Strikers despite its much larger cast having their issues and the flaws from the earlier seasons rearing their ugly heads, especially in the later episodes of the show. Now that I've seen all three seasons of the series, I don't feel like digging any further with its mixed qualities.
Last updated Sunday, March 04 2012. Created Sunday, March 04 2012.
Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS
Final review soon...|
Ep 1: We see Nanoha has matured from her first days as a magic girl to a full-fledge officer and she has taken new recruits under her wing. This ep was their test day and with incredible results, they get the job done.
Ep 2 had some solid back story of the airport fire four years ago and how certain encounters with "S-class mages" (cough, cough) would affect two special surviors lives forever. We also meet the other two new recruits and learn how this new division is formed under Hayate's command.
Ep 3: A new Lost Logia item is on the rise and Nanoha takes the four recruits and puts them through Hell with some brutal "all-night" training. "Nobody ever said magic control would be easy"! LOL
Ep 4 was a great. Nanoha made the recruits try to hit her at least once for training purposes and they tried everything to score a hit on the invincible Ace of Aces, Nanoha! The whole "limiter system" idea was a though pill to swallow but it would make sense as it wouldn't be wise to have the S-class mages with "planet-destroying" magic power walking around with normal civilians. The way to remove the limiters was a bit much though, especially for Hayate herself who is walking around with four separate limiters on to reduce her powers!
Ep 5 was shocking to say the least. I didn’t think they would do it but they did the nude transformation sequence with Nanoha and Fate with their adult bodies! It was ok before because they were kids and there was nothing to see but this time they are all grown up with grown up bodies and there is plenty to see! It passes fan-service and borderlines Ecchi content. To make matters more strange (depending on your gender), the male mage, Elio, transforms but doesn't have to do it nude! Talk about being sexist, but it's not like i'm disagreeing or anything. Male nudity is always a bad thing but female nudity is always a plus in my book. ^_^
Here is the list of the 6th division main squads and members for those keeping track:
1) Nanoha - captain
2) Vita - vice captain
3) Subaru - foward trainee
4) Tia - foward trainee
1) Fate - captain
2) Signum - vice captain
3) Elio - foward trainee
4) Caro and Fried - foward trainee
One last thing about this episode was the fact that it took Ikki (main lead from AIR GEAR) all series long to fully learn and master the "Wing Road" technique while Subaru has it right from the jump! Not cool...
Ep 6 had Nanoha, Fate, and Vita take the fowards and really get technical with their different strengths and weaknesses. More foreshadowing and an appalling discovery ends the episode.
Ep 7 had some doubt and regret for a certain forward as she almost killed her partner while trying to selfishly claim all the credit for the mission.
Ep 8 shows us some back story of why Tia tries so hard to be the best and she literally loses it during a training session and goes too far forcing Nanoha to punish her and cool her head for a bit...
Ep 9 was so intriguing, I can only say that you'll have to see it to believe it. Sorry, but it was so good, I can't mention too much about it as it will ruin the compelling emotions of seeing what really happened to Nanoha after she joined up and just how much of a fool Tia has been up until now. I know I saw a tear fall from my eye. Damn this story for being so brilliant. I can't believe how well-written this story is for being 26 episodes of "high caliber" story-line. I thought it couldn't be done, but here it is. This title can do it.
Ep 10 is where we see the Stars and Lightning forwards finally get a day off. We learn of Caro's other dragon, Voltaire (if that isn't a "G" status name, I dont't know what else is). She explains their special relationship and its a scary one indeed. ^_^ The end of the episode proves how this series will never let up on the excitement. Not even once...
Ep 11: new ally - action - surprise appearance - limiter release - action - new enemy - action - action - action. That about sums it up...
Ep 12 featured an unstoppable amount of action. We had "nuclear scale" magical explosions, a beautiful chase through realistically rendered building rooftops, and the arrival of the entire enemy force that will opposing our heroes for the time being. I love watching Vita "cut loose" with Eisen (her hammer weapon)! She is nearly as fun to watch as Fate is!
Ep 13-15 was heavy story line. A bit boring actually to be honest.
Ep 16 forshadowing and a little action.
Ep 17: Most action is an understatement for what happened in this episode. Let's just say that "things don't always go the way you planned" is the theme for this episode! Poor heroes...
Ep 18 was the recovery process.
Ep 19 we enter the final string of episodes as this one marks the beginning of the end.
Ep 20 is the last attempt to hold back the action! All limiters have been released for section six and the enemy is stronger than ever! This collision of "unmovable forces" is bound to rattle the planet itself...
Ep 21 was very hard to come to grips with. I'm kind of tired of watching my girls lose. Everyone is in trouble and there is no real sign of escape this time. Only the main pair themselves (Nanoha and Fate) can still hold their ground. A certain issue is holding Hayate and her knights from full power.
Ep 22: A bunch of people are about to die! Even the captains are in trouble it seems. Tia is in the deepest trouble and there is no way out!
Ep 23 had most of our heroes miraculously defeat their counterparts. It was forced to say the least. Tia did great but Subaru's fight was bull crap...
Ep 24 had the end of multiple fights and Nanoha is the only one left with a battle of life or death on her hands. Caro summoned Voltaire again and man is that dragon is a "G". He reminds me of Bahamut from the Final Fantasy series (I just got my hands on a clean copy of ff7 (talk about connections...) by the way and for those who know anything about video games, you know that a brand new copy of ff7 now would sell for too much money ^_^ I know i'm late playing this game but it's as good as everyone said and then some)!!! Back to the ep, Fate was able to cut loose a little and showed a quick demonstration of her new Sonic form as well.
Ep 25 featured a pair of "planet-detroying" beams from the Ace of aces, Nanoha.
The final episode had everyone make it and all the problems get taken care of. I still like how they always tell you want the characters are doing and what they're future goals are and if they achieved any of them. The series is left wide-open for another season(!). Great story though not as good as the first two seasons...
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Last updated Wednesday, October 07 2009. Created Saturday, October 25 2008.
Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS
I rather enjoyed watching both Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha and Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha A's and thus when a 3rd series was announced I was keen on watching it. While I didn't get to watch the series when it initially came out in Japan, better late than never.
With the show taking place 10-years after Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha A's (I think roughly 4-years after the aftermath in A's), I liked the idea that Nanoha, Fate, and Hayate were going to be 19-year old adults. Indeed, there are good things that come from this. Fate has become guardian to two orphaned children (Elio and Caro) who then join the new military division that Hayate has formed (the 6th Mobile Division). She's an Enforcer and an S+ ranked mage (S+ being the 3rd-highest mage ranking, though she's restricted for bureaucratic reasons to AA rank). Nanoha (a Captain) is also an S+ ranked mage (restricted to AA) and in addition to working as an aerial mage, she's a combat instructor. Hayate has surpassed both of her friends in terms of rank (Lt. Colonel) and is an SS-ranked mage (2nd highest ranking), though is restricted to below Nanoha and Fate to an A-rank. Hayate still has her Guardian Knights who are also in the service, though they don't work as a team any more, being split up as required (such as Vita and Nanoha being sent on a mission).
So, we have these hard-working girls who are very powerful and important people within the TSA organization. Despite this, the writers give them very simplistic, child-like dialog at times. I'm not referring to Nanoha calling her friends "Fate-chan" or "Hayate-chan," (though that helps the simplistic feel of the dialog). At 19, I would expect the girls to speak more like adults, especially given their positions and accomplishments within the TSA. Instead, at times the words that would come out of their mouths felt like their 9-year old counterparts. That was a bit bothersome.
The writers take their time with this series and do a great deal of table setting. So while the 6th Mobile Division comes together rather quickly, the writers take some time to look at characters and focus on Nanoha's training regiment. That's not to say that we see episodes of pure training, but even if we don't see much, we know that Nanoha (later joined by Vita) are training the rookies hard (the rookies being the new girls and boy -- Subaru, Tia, Caro, and Elio along with the dragon Fried). We learn why Nanoha won't tolerate the rookies trying to show off, even if it means she has to hurt them in mock combat to get the point across). We learn why Vita is so determined to protect everyone (though both these things are apparently gone into greater details in the official bridge manga). Without giving anything else away, the writers just take their time and after setting the table, they pay off almost everything very nicely.
Early on, there's less of a sense of danger for the team as all they fight are Gadgets -- a type of droid. Even with artificial limits placed on Nanoha, Fate, and Hayate, the audience feels that no matter what, as long as they are around, the 6th will kick bottom. That changes when the writers introduce the Combat Cyborgs and put human faces on their opponents, to say nothing of characters like Knight Zest, Summoner Lutecia, and Ancient Belka Unison Device Agito (similar to Hayate's Rein). Having done all the table setting, once there is a real sense of danger, the show shifts to the next level and becomes much more interesting. So when bad and evil things happen, it has impact on the audience.
Characters. OK, there are a TON of characters in this series, so much so that characters like Arf, Yuuno, and Lindy are relegated to a few cameo appearances. On the villain front, there are the 12 Combat Cyborgs (the "Numbers), Doctor Scaglietti, Lutecia and her summoned critters (three are named I believe), Knight Zest and Unison Device Agito. There are the additional characters to push the story forward like General Geis and his aide, Knight Carim (of the Saint Church) and her aide, Sister Schach. There's Inspector Verossa. At the 108th, there's Major Nakajima and his daughter Ginga. There's Vivio and the house lady who helped watch her for Nanoha. I haven't even gotten to the 6th Mobile Division with Hayate, Nanoha, Fate, Signum, Vita, Shamal, Zafira, Reinforce Zwei (Rein), Subaru, Tia, Caro (with her summoned dragons of Friedrich and Voltaire), Elio, Vice, Alto, Shari, and many others. Despite the sheer number of characters, I thought the writers did a good job in handling this, giving characters some needed background to help with the big picture and to help with the overall theme of family. As such, I never felt cheated, though it would have been nice if Hayate, Nanoha, and Fate could have taken a trip to Earth (for the fun of it).
Ultimately, I have a lot of praise for the writing when it comes to story presentation. They laid a good foundation and while this story may not be the greatest story ever told, it is a good one because of that foundation. If only the dialog had been better, this would have scored even better with me.
There is an official manga that was created to not only bridge events between the 2nd and 3rd series (some chapters focusing on Fate, Nanoha, and Hayate, some chapters focusing on Tia and the like), but I'm told there are also chapters designed to give the audience more insight into certain events happening within the anime. I do plan to read these and should this series be licensed, I hope the licensing company will also license the manga.Bottom line: The slow start and simplistic dialog will put off some folks. While the writers have done a good job so that you can watch this series without having seen the first two, maximum enjoyment will be had from having seen the first two series. Those who make it past all the table setting will find some nice payoffs in action and story. As such, I rate this a Buy.
Last updated Saturday, May 31 2008. Created Wednesday, March 12 2008.
Mahou Shoujo Lyrical Nanoha StrikerS
at ep 13.|
nearly halfway, and boy, this is series sure is a doozy compared to its predecessors. i'll begin by saying that character designs suck. they're boxy on occasion or distorted or the animation quality sucks i don't know. the characters just look weird sometimes and get worse. the loli stuff is just ridiculously excessive and OOC at times. execution of events is horribly awkward and battles are boring. sure, new magic and new gadgets, but boring. the limiter crap is just ridiculous. the time it takes to release a limiter comes as a conveniently long pause during battle. whatever.
but all is not lost, the series does have it's shining moments throughout the stupid dialogue and awkward timing. and these past few episodes are steadily moving upwards towards serious stuff, at least i hope so. the battles are getting more epic as we move past robots and to real characters. but there are so very very many characters (seriously there are like at least 7 new enemies) and a whole slew of section 6 (and the frikkin church) that we've yet to really meet and so characters don't get as much time as they deserve they're just there and they're just badass when they're needed to be.
i'm still meh, but things are looking up. fingers crossed.
Last updated Saturday, July 14 2007. Created Friday, April 06 2007.
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|A list of AstroNerdBoy's episode reviews of the series, in reverse order.|