November 25, 2006

First Episdode Review: 009-1

I was on the other day, hoping that the new episode of Kanon 2006 had been posted, when I saw a listing for the first ep of a new show called 009-1. After a quick read-up on it, I decided "hey, what the heck, why not?" In an alternate history, the world is divided in to the Eastern and Western blocs. For 140 years, an uneasy truce/cold war has existed, but there are forces that want that to end.

Enter our heroine, Jane Bond... er, Mylene Hoffman.
Hi! I'm Secret Agent 009-1.  No, really.

Her job: to rescue Dr. Soyuzu (no, really!) from the clutches of the evil East Bloc, and the evil Information Director Tsundera.
Tsundera.  No, I'm not kidding.

Of course, 009-1 isn't alone... there's the rest of her team:
9-8 and 9-3.  No, I'm not kidding.

Oh, and they're all cyborgs. I think. 9-8 has a knee mortar... yes, that's right, she can fire an explosive shell out of her knee. Go ahead and giggle. 9-3, on the other hand, is the intel expert. Note that her eyes are cameras, and she can be linked to just about any bit of electronics (from door locks to space shuttle launch computers) just by plugging a cable into her neck. 9-7 is the disguise expert, able to look like anybody at any time (except that her earrings still stay visible).

So what cyborg ability does 9-1 have? We don't really see in this episode, but this shot from the OP should give you an idea:
Nope, I'm not kidding.  And I'm NOT making the obvious '.38 special' joke...

I can't even begin to tell you just how loudly this show screams "CHEESE!" From the old skool character designs to the 'No One Lives Forever' spy-babe stylings, this show just oozes 'camp'.

This isn't always a bad thing. The aforementioned game No One Lives Forever, and it's sequel, NOLF 2, spoofed the genre perfectly, while still telling an exciting story. Heck, even the Austin Powers movies got it right. The producers of 009-1 would have done better by watching and playing those examples a lot more than they did (come to think about it, NOLF would make a fine anime...).

This, though... this is not good. Even the fanservice, which could have made this show worthwhile in a juvenile (but fun!) way, is pretty weak.
I'm NOT showing the scene where 9-1 sleeps with Tsundera.  No, I'm not kidding.

There are no laughs to be had, nothing that can be taken in a serious manner, and, quite honestly, the characters are paper-thin and uninteresting. The plot, such as it is, has been done before and better.

My standard rule of thumb is "three episodes." If I watch a series, it gets three shows before I give up on it. Not this one.

Two wingtips down, and go watch Dirty Pair instead.

Posted by: Wonderduck at 07:41 PM | Comments (6) | Add Comment
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1 You know, I wouldn't even download it. For free. In fact, I haven't so far.

BTW. Not to be confused with "Cyborg 009", apparently. It looks like Japan has finally run out of letters, and even numbers.

Posted by: Pete Zaitcev at November 25, 2006 08:43 PM (9imyF)

2 One of the robots in "Excel Saga" has cannons in her knees.

Are you sure the evil director is named "Tsundera"? Could it be "Tsundere"?

My first take when I saw the first picture was, "Oh, so this is what the director of 'Najica Blitz Tactics' is doing now!" But that, at least, was moderately witty and had a story to tell.

It looks like this is the first directorial outing for the 009-1 director. (He's listed as "Director, Character Design, Chief Animation Director", so it's definitely all his fault.)

Posted by: Steven Den Beste at November 26, 2006 09:54 AM (+rSRq)

3 Nope, it's Tsundera, according to the fansubbers. I still think it's funny.

Posted by: Wonderduck at November 26, 2006 09:55 AM (YadGF)

4 I do not think 009-1 is that bad in episode 1. If you watched the OLD 1978 cyborg 009 series (not the 2001 one). Then you should like this anime.

However, they said this anime is targeting western people .... I do not think it will work at all ....

009-1 is originally a comic call 009NO1 , drawn by Shotaro Ishinomori in 1967-1974. He is also the author of kamen rider , cyborg 009, Kikaider and many other famous comics / life action hero series.

some japanese wiki :

Posted by: uccoffee at December 06, 2006 12:34 PM (2oIr3)

5 This is how the original comic characters look like .... kind of ugly

Posted by: uccoffee at December 06, 2006 12:43 PM (2oIr3)

6 Uccoffee, I'm sure there are people out there who'll love 009-1. I'm just not one of them.

There's nothing horribly wrong with the show, there's just nothing RIGHT with it. It's ultimately 'just another show' to me.

Posted by: Wonderduck at December 06, 2006 01:49 PM (0Co69)

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