Saturday, June 5, 2010

Project Otaku Powerlevelling: Part 9

The second full-length series that needed to be tackled was Kiddy Girl-and. I should really have some kind of cool opening theme for these.

Kiddy Girl-and earned a spot on this list due to its predecessor, Kiddy Grade. Easily one of my Top Five, hearing that a potential sequel was in the works years ago, I had high hopes. After several years of no news though, I stopped thinking about KG2 and moved on to other things--other series. But naturally when I first saw artwork and posters on this series, "Kiddy Girl-and", I got excited again--its very existence became a large part of why I was excited for the fall season of anime last year.

Unfortunately, Kiddy Girl-and just did not turn out to be the series I wanted it to be. The first six episodes are a mess of character focus episodes, giving Kiddy Girl-and far more comedy than Kiddy Grade provided, even at its silliest. However, I was unconcerned here--Kiddy Grade's opening episodes failed to impress as well. Actually, KG spent a little more time in the hole--seven episodes (not counting episode 4 and going up TO episode 9) to KG-and's six.

Kiddy Girl-and steps it up starting with episode 7, reintroducing the main characters' (Ascoeur and Q-Feuille) mentors, Trixie and Troisienne, who take the rookie ES members with them on a mission against people who could be members of an unconfirmed organization entitled G-Society. This is a huge step-up, reintroducing several elements of the previous series (spaceships, espionage, actual missions) while introducing us to a new villain.

The plot of Kiddy Girl-and is good, and episodes seven through sixteen do a lot of work proving this. Complaints I'd had with the early episodes of the series began to disappear as the plot unveiled itself. Where are Eclair and Lumiere? "Doing IMPORTANT Hero Work." Why a loli and what's up with the yuri? "Dude, she's the most competent freaking character." Where's Eclipse? "You find out. Keep watching." (Crappy answer--but it IS an answer.)

Even the ties between Kiddy Girl-and and Kiddy Grade become more pronounced during this part of the series, and the show is better for it.

...Trouble is, the series slams into a giant roadblock at the end of sixteen, and never truly recovers. I'll avoid spoilers, except to say KG-and stumbles numerous times, making errors that, admittedly, generally only bug me, but still. (The biggest? Reforming a nearly galaxy-destroying villain.) KG-and's not worth anyone's time investment unless they LOVED Kiddy Grade. Even then, some fanfiction could outdo what we got.

Oh well. On to #12! Or 13...14? Whatever.