Battle Programmer Shirase

Title:Battle Programmer Shirase
Keywords: , , , , , , , , , ,
Notables: FUKUEN Misato
HASHI Takaya
NAKAI Kazuya
NAKAJIMA Toshihiko
SUZUKI Chihiro
TAKATO Yasuhiro
YANAKA Hiroshi
YOKOTE Kumiko (Hyousei)
In the shadow world of computer hackers, there are a few names of legend. One of them is BPS (Battle Programmer Shirase) but be warned that if you piss him off, your bank account will go to zero, and the local police will have arrest warrants in your name. And BPS does not work for money... to hire the best, you will need to find those interesting and rare vintage computer parts that money can not buy.

[TV series, 2003-04, 15 episodes; 5 story-episodes each consisting of 3 parts of 12 min each]
1:15min Series Opening - YouTube Video
Episode Details 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Watch 8 7 8 6 5 6 Ggultra2764 [series:825#1552]
A bit underwhelming for something geared as a comedy anime, Battle Programmer Shirase focuses on our male lead Shirase being an expert hacker/ programmer recruited by different organizations to combat hacking threats over several arcs that have about ten minutes an episode. The hacking premise was what drew me to the series, but the series mostly felt like it was resorting to techno babble in a number of the nonsensical acts that Shirase and other hackers could pull such as blowing up buildings through overloading electric systems and having Russian satellites rain down on unsuspecting foes. The series also made a failed effort at making a running gag of Shirase's client walking in on him in a compromising position with Misao or Yoriko and thinking he should go after some Italian actress I know nothing about. It looked like the series was catering to otaku interests with the heavy emphasis on computers and implications that Shirase had interest in anime, manga and possibly being a lolicon (no thanks to the attention he gets from Misao and Yoriko). There were some plot developments that the series hinted at with Shirase's past before being a "hacker-for-hire", but the anime never bothers to flesh out this element to his character which seemed more interesting than Shirase's interactions with Misao and his clients. Overall, BPS is quite the wasted potential of an anime with its hacking premise, no thanks to its apparent catering to the otaku crowd.

Last updated Thursday, March 28 2013. Created Thursday, March 28 2013.
Watch 7 8 8 7 7 7 Dreamer [series:825#2279]
As a programming geek myself, I thought I'd enjoy this one. However, there really wasn't much to it.

Art, Animation & Character Designs
The art was below par. Colors were slightly dull and overall art wasn't compareable to most other animes out there. Character designs were below par as well. They weren't bad but were a bit bland as well.

The OP wasn't bad however. It was a modern, almost emo-sounding piece with female vocals. It wasn't that bad really.... but hmmm.... it sounded awefully familiar... that toon. The ED was really spunky and cool. I actually like it. Normally I don't like these types of music but it wasn't bad at all.

Series and Episode Story
As mentioned above, this is pretty ecchi-fied. Really!! If you can get around the ecchi stuff, then it's actually an acceptable piece of entertainment. There were one thing that really got old quickly and almost got to the point of annoyance. Each episode would have the "accidental" erotic position, at which time there would be some silly rant about some french actress... and a laugh track to top it off. The first or second time wasn't bad.... but each and every episode? Aside from that, there wasn't anything in ways of a plot. It's pretty much a mindless piece of animation done for the Otaku crowd. However, it was still fun watching the super hacker at work.

Overall, it was just a mild entertainment that didn't amount to much. If you've got some anime time, then put this at the bottom of your list.

Last updated Saturday, April 18 2009. Created Saturday, April 18 2009.
Rent 9 8 8 9 7 7 AstroNerdBoy [series:825#436]

When I got through with the 15th episode (or episode 5.3 if you will), I couldn't help but wonder if this anime got cut off before completion. After all, it appeared that a new lolicon character was about to be introduced (she's hinted at in the credits started with episode 2.1), but it never panned out. Since there doesn't appear to be manga source-material, I guess I'll never know.

BPS is a quirky anime title. Clearly, it was designed for the otaku crowd, especially those with the lolicon fetish. Every story-episode contained one scene with Shirase being 'caught' in what appears to be a sexual position with a lolicon girl, mainly Misao-chan. Devil Doll is right that the gag got old, yet I wanted to see what bizarre position the writers would come up with for Shirase to get caught in. But the joke about the various men wanting to hire Shirase to do their job and then going on and on about him having sex with a child when they'd prefer that French actress got real old. Oddly enough, at the end of each gag, a laugh-track was inserted making me wonder if this wasn't some jab at Japanese or American sitcoms.

From a story point-of-view, each story-episode tells generally has two stories -- one for Shirase and one for Misao-chan. Shirase refuses all jobs for money, but will do jobs for some old/rare electrionic/computer equipment/part, or he'll do a job for some other otaku-fetish such as a military show or to own a rare anime/manga/doujinshi-related collectable. For Shirase's part, he lives an otaku dream. He has people crawling to him for aid, addressing him as "Shirase-sensei" (which is proper since he is a master with computers). He also has the cute elementary school girl Misao-chan come over on a daily basis. She cooks for him, spends time with him, and calls him "Oniichan," which is a Japanese male sexual fantasy (though it is harmless here). They may have trouble communicating with the outside world, but they communicate quite well with each other. She's like a dream wife. He has feelings for Misao-chan and one would have to say is sexually attracted to her, but would never act on those feeling beyond peeking up her skirt.

For Misao-chan's part, it is unclear to me what would draw her to Shirase beyond her need to take care of someone. She too loves her oniichan, but because she's so young, she doesn't yet know how to express it properly. She enjoys the attention that Shirase gives her and she knows that he enjoys not only her company, but those lolicon fetishes too. So she did allow him to peek at her panties a time or two; she wore her swimsuit under her sundress so she could show it off to him, and she even wore her little cheerleader outfit for him to peek at, and I felt she enjoyed being looked at by her oniichan. So the two of them have an odd, yet strangly sweet relationship.

The other lolicon in the series, Yoriko (aka: Yun-chan), nearly pushes the series over the edge. She too is an elementary school-aged Japanese girl, but she's somehow in the American Navy and assigned to a special division for computer warfare (for lack of a better term). Her encounter with Shirase-san makes it clear that while she has the body of a lolicon, she has the mind of an adult as she decides she wants Shirase to be her partner (in more ways than one). Indeed, both end up help each other as the series progresses using their incredible computer skills. Fortunately, the writers didn't go for a love-triangle thing as they make Misao-chan and Yun-chan friends. The final image from the anime makes it clear that the three of them will still be involved together somehow in the future. I have to say I would have liked to have seen how that happens.

One of the strengths of the series is that the stories are well-crafted and the supporting charaters are interesting. Indeed, many of the supporting characters end up being linked. Sae-sensei, Misao-chan's teacher, is a year younger than Shirase, but they went to the same schools together through high school (which is why she calls him "senpai"). They even go to an omiai together. Sae-sensei takes a keen interest in seeing Misao-chan be with a nice boy and arranges for her to be with Kawahara-kun (Misao's senpai as he's in middle school) during a school beach trip. Kawahara-kun's sister Kawahara Saki appears to fall in love with Shirase after a little adventure they have together. I would have enjoyed seeing that played out, but alas it was not to be.

Bottom line: a might to perverted for my tastes, and a surprise (I don't know why) that this came from Hayashi-sensei. The series also feels incomplete, therefore it only gets a "rent."

Last updated Tuesday, January 03 2006. Created Thursday, December 29 2005.

Rent Stretch [series:825#628]
Computers. Contrary to what you might expect, they are incapable of acting in an illogical manner. Computers can be extremely frustrating, as I've discovered recently. Keeping them up and running demands a calm, analytical mind. So, how would an anime comedy about an exceptional computer programmer be made to appeal to the general public?

Add a healthy dose of perversion! Going in, I was wondering if BPS would become a character I could sympathize with, or, as I'd heard, would he be too perverted? In fact, Akira didn't turn out to be nearly as weird as I'd been led to expect. He is definitely entranced by Misao-chan, his sister's granddaughter (or something like that), but doesn't do anything that would hurt her, so I don't mind. I think that in order to be likeable, any character who posesses superhuman skills needs a significant flaw to counterbalance them. Furthermore, this didn't turn out to be entirely a one-way street. That is, not just an innocent little girl at the mercy of a dirty old man--episode 5 makes that clear (it was--what's the word--delicious!). No, Akira is by no means the only character with a touch of ecchi to him. Characters in general were fun, quirky people capable of behaving in a risque manner--it could be argued that Akizuki was in fact the most perverted of all, what with his obvious familiarity with prostitution. Then there's the startlingly suggestive manner in which Misao's friend behaves--like an adult woman in a child's body. It's possible for anime characters to be "not perverted enough"; in BPS, the balance is near-perfect.

Normally I love anime series with shorter-than-usual episodes, but somehow the way BPS was packaged was annoying. Perhaps it's because the series is organized into five blocks of three mini-episodes each, and since the plots of the related mini-episodes are so closely interconnected, trying to watch them one at a time just doesn't work. The OP and ED Music are actually pretty neat, but I don't need to hear them every ten minutes. The episodes themselves are over almost before they begin. It seemed like often times two of the three mini-eps would be spent providing background, then, in the third one, the actual crisis would come and go remarkably quickly--(just when things were getting good!). Several times I found myself wishing there had been more of a twist.

Also, I can't help suspecting that the makers of BPS had been confident that it would extend beyond the single season which it actually lasted. At the start of the final episode there's the comment "Let's pay close attention to the end of the first season" (which implies that there had at least been hopes for a second one). Initially, I had assumed that "King of America" would be a sort of villain-of-the-week who would be gone after this first plot arc concluded, but in fact he, and several other characters (Yunoki, Sae-sensei) reappeared numerous times--until they seemed to be dropped like a hot potato before the final plot arc (episodes 13-15). Furthermore, the mysterious organization "MPS" which "brought the world to a halt" eight years ago is mentioned several times, but no clear explanation of just what it did is provided.

My overall impression of BPS is a show of tremendous potential which wasn't fully utilized, which is a shame. I'd love to see some more episodes.

P.S: Isabelle Adjani really does exist! See episode 5.

Last updated Monday, September 12 2005. Created Monday, September 12 2005.
Rent 8 8 8 7 8 5 Devil Doll [series:825#752]
[Score: 75% = Rent-]
  • Drama: Low (yes, there's actually some story)
  • Comedy: High (but you should be a computer nerd to fully appreciate it)
  • Action: Low (the "battles" play on a different layer)
  • SciFi: High (not really fiction but tech is the name of the game)
  • Ecchi: Med (only hinted at but perverted/loli enough, just very Japanese)
Like with Buttobi CPU I started with rather low expectations. But I like this one significantly better. Yes, this series is focussing on "pervert" scenes (most definitely in the final episode), but it is far from being hentai, and it is perverted in a very Japanese and funny way. Just look at the last scene of this series with Misao - very nice.
The first two of those five episodes are rather stereotypical - BPS smashes Ose Rintarou. At this stage Satoshi's amazing skills made me continue watching, plus a cool line now and then (my favourite is the "MP3" line in episode 5... I don't want to spoil it for you).
But starting with episode 3 things begin to look significantly better, introducing Yunomi Yoriko and developing the roles of Motoko Sae and Kawahara-senpai further. What I like best about those later episodes is how they manage to plausibly interweave the subplots of Satoshi and Misao, and that they don't overuse that "King of America" character (who is a Japanese after all, just like the leading American Navy hacker is a 12 years old Japanese schoolgirl... now which message is this passing to the Japanese audience, Jan-Chan? ;-).
Look at the "Episode Story" value and you know why this show almost missed the "Rent" rating. I would prefer some of these pervert elements to be absent - that "running gag" with the 60 seconds of child abuse scene in every single one of these episodes (with almost literally identical text lines) got old in episode 3 already and was nothing but annoying later. But what really unnerves me is how they spent those 36 minutes of each episode: Three summaries of what happened before, three intro songs, three trailer songs, and three previews of the next episode! Which means that no less than 12 of these 36 minutes are mere package...
Well, this is a funny series, and more so for computer nerds like me. I'll somehow create myself a special version without all this package stuff and rewatch it now and then - that's why a mere "Watch" would not do justice to this series.
During the last episode they mention several time this would be the end of the "first season". So maybe they planned for more of this to come...

Last updated Saturday, June 14 2008. Created Friday, January 21 2005.
Rent Forbin [series:825#1573]
I would give it a watch but I loved this too much, (As I'm in computers). I can't give it a Buy as it is not R1 yet.
This really was a 5 Episode OVA concerning the life of a true hacker. He lives to hack, he lives for computer parts, he sleeps late, he has no contact with women, he's a major perv :)
The animation is really strange. Take Koi Kaze, mix in Mahoromatic, and throw in Card Captor Sakura just to mess with you.
If you like computers then this is for you. If you don't, well then don't watch, it's super technical and probably feasible.
My favorite scene is when his client walks in on his niece and she has her dress off showing BPS her new swimsuit. The client IMMEDIATEY goes into Perv mode and says 'That costs 7000 yen EXTRA'. :)

Last updated Thursday, December 09 2004. Created Thursday, December 09 2004.
Watch 8 5 8 7 9 7 Anonymous #1651 [series:825#1651]
This series is what i call western friendly. Its funny but doesnt have any of that 5000kg sledge hammers to the head kinda crap in it.
Also very repedativ and sometimes almost cut & paste like scenes & charachters. Each of BPS's "custemors" catches him in a situation that could be misconscrued as child abuse. This "catch Scene" happens every series only thing that seems to vary is the sexal position. The text & animation doesnt differ much if any.
a couple of freez frames where to save on drawings they just give u a panarama still view. I hate that.
But the humor and some sort of unexplainable liking to this chap makes me wanting for more. Tought a tight budget seems to be the curse of this series.
The idea and charachters are good tough the content is so and so. worth a watch but thats it

Last updated Wednesday, October 20 2004. Created Wednesday, October 20 2004.
Watch 8 9 8 8 8 Jan-Chan [series:825#967]
With almost no fan-service or ecchi content, this series is interesting because it DOES have a distinctive Japanese PERVERT flavor.
Shirase is a 27 year-old (or so) society drop out, who is an absolute wiz at programming. Using a cell phone, he can access his home server, and write hex-code to deal with most any situation. He seems to be half asleep and barely aware of his surroundings, except when is on-stage and on-line dealing with a situation.
Shirase is looked after by his nice and innocent young niece, a thirteen-year old girl named Misao, who serves only to play to the PERV fetish that I have already mentioned.
If you do any programming, then you will find some modest amount of humor in this series .. Shirases main rival is nerd who calls himself king of america, who is out to destroy Japanese society (OK what kind of message is this passing on to the young viewers.)
This series is worth a watch, as long as you can skip the repeated opening and closing credits that take up too much anime time in each fifteen minute long episode.

Last updated Sunday, August 01 2004. Created Saturday, July 31 2004.

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