|Overall||Art||Animation||Character Design||Music||Series Story||Episode Story||Reviewer|
|Rent 4||7||8||7||5||7||6||Jer Alford||[series:715#614]|
This fairly decent anime was really two seperate OVA series. The first was released on subtitled-VHS under the title Ariel, then the 2-episode followup titled in America as Deluxe Ariel. It starts off as if it was already a well-established series with the first episode being labeled as "Episode IV"(a definate homage to Star Wars!). The original 2-parter showed Earth being invaded by a large starship that keeps on sending down giant monsters and mechas in an attempt to take over the planet. The aliens are from some galactic empire that sends out starships like this to conquer other worlds, but this one is severly aged and has used up alot of its resources in trying to dominated Earth. This is mostly due to the brilliance of mad scientist Dr. Kishida. He created a giant robot named ARIEL which looks like a metallic runway model in leotards. It was apparently modeled after the doctor's late wife in how she looked when she was young(as if a woman that hot would marry a crazed lab dweller like him!). Kishida employs his sexy redhead niece(who pilots the mecha in a Playboy bunny costume!), and his grandaughters Aya and Kazumi. Aya tries to get into a good college and hates having to take time out to pilot ARIEL, although her grandpa could get her into any college she wanted with all the government funding he gets. Kazumi on the other hand doesn't mind it at first, until being a robot pilot interferes with her dating life. The aliens are then joined by Ragnus, a commander from the alien military. He launches a major assault on Japan and ARIEL's homebase. Luckily, the superpowered alien defector Starburst shows up to give a hand. After a final desperate to try and take Earth, the aliens face a dire problem. Their engine has given out and their ship is going to crash right in Japan. This would cause global distasters and a possible end of the world. However, Dr. Kishida forsees this and works with the UN forces to create a barrier field around the crashsite to bounce the ship back into orbit. With a little help from ARIEL and her reluctant pilots, the world is saved, although the series ends with the aliens still in orbit around Earth. Ariel is a funny spoof on old Japanese sci-fi shows like Ultraman. It's available as part of CPM's Authentic Anime line where they were too cheap to dub it and put it on subtitled-only DVD.
Last updated Tuesday, January 06 2004. Created Tuesday, January 06 2004.