So, after escaping from the police station, unbeknownst to anyone else, Hybrid, Ani & GSXR roam around the night looking for either a car to travel or a hotel to rest. “This is getting exhausting!!” GSXR said, “Why can’t you just use your power to transport into an empty room at a hotel….no one is going to notice us there.” Then Ani added that we can’t be exposed too much considering we used it once and somebody is bound to find them out. “This is going nowhere. We can’t rent a car because of Hybrid’s face and they’re closed at night, we don’t see any vacancies for a hotel within our mile radius, and we’re mostly wanted men….well, people.” As they continued to walk and GSXR agreeing with her statement, Ani noticed Hybrid was very silent (well, more silent than normal) and went to turn around and he was nowhere to be found and the reason was that he was feeling twice as exhausted from Blue Leaf usage and then some gang was cornering him with and knew who exactly he was and the leader said, “Yo, is that—Oh SHIT, it is! It’s that $6 million bounty guy!!” and then they pursue to track him and then they hold him down and knock him around until he’s unconscious in case he tries to escape and then they put in their car. I think this kidnapping attempt reminds me of some anime I watched not too long ago…..I can’t think of the title but it’s…I…I……oh, yeah…I’s.
Yup, today’s topic revolving around this anime is romance, considering at the time of writing this review, it’s close to Valentine’s Day, mostly the holiday that many people either get excited about or dreaded as it goes by. Anyway, the anime du jour is based on the manga that was originally serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump in Japan from 1997 to 1999; the series was collected into 15 tankōbon volumes by Shueisha. There were 2 OVA adaptations, the first From I’s is a 2-episode OVA while I’s Pure is a six-part OVA.
The story’s main character is 16-year-old high school student Ichitaka Seto who is in love with his classmate Iori Yoshizuki, but too shy to tell her. Again and again he plans to tell her his true feelings, but each time something (usually a misunderstanding of some kind) gets in the way. Things become even more complicated when Itsuki Akiba returns to Japan; she is a girl Ichitaka was friends with in their childhood before she moved to the United States, and who had a huge crush on him. Now, that part is more from Pure rather than the first outing From, but some of the time, they both have similar plot details with the first OVA being something that actually resembles a plot that’s involves Itsuki meeting Yosuke, another childhood friend & Ichitaka in the woods to fulfill a promise they made ten years ago.
I will say that the first OVA, while being the shortest, is possibly the more interesting one to watch but it doesn’t hold up well to the second series in part of story continuity and cohesion and yet, Pure focus more on the romantic aspect with it being played straight although it needs up being generic and typical, especially the most awkward misunderstandings, oblivious characters who really seems more dumb than they appear, and obnoxious editing tricks.
For characters, Ichitaka Seto, the main character of the series is the shy teenage boy who has trouble with relationships due to his earlier misfortunes but to me, I get his shyness and where he’s coming from but often he has his foot in his mouth a few too many times, although that is bound to happen to many people. For Iori Yoshizuki, she’s very friendly, gorgeous to look at but honestly, she’s the blandest character in the series. For the first OVA, she definitely showed no purpose there except for her doing her job and in peril. The second series show more purpose with her but is still in peril with the dumbest antagonist who wants revenge for finding out that he spies on girls changing clothes. Next time, buddy, make your cam more unnoticeable. Itsuki Akiba, on the other hand, was actually one of the greater things about the show. She’s playful, characteristic and often shameless and loud but somebody that seems fun to hang out with and of course, there’s the other plotline that she’s a childhood friend and she has real feelings towards Ichi and we all know how that goes along. Then there’s Teratani, Ichitaka’s best friend who think himself as a pro with the females and gives him advice on how not to mess up his relationship but he’s also a jackass when it comes to messing with Ichi a few times.
For animation, it was provided by two animation companies; the first being Studio Pierrot, the guys responsible for 2 of the Big Three, Naruto and Bleach; and Studio ARMS, the one animation company that I bitch about for being hacks…….plus they made Master of Marital Hearts and for it, the character designs are very consistent from both OVAs while the first series looks older, which is more understandable considering the years. There is a little amount of gratuitous fan service in the second OVA on the sections of “Ichitaka’s Fantasy Diary”, where he sexually fantasizes about the girls (Iori, Itsuki, etc.) and their intimate moments. The music score is mainly decent although it’s forgettable most of the times, including the openers and ending songs in Pure.
Funny thing about the dub is from New Generation Pictures, this is a Viz Media release and NGP is usually associated with Geneon most of the time but this dub was…off. Darrel Guillbeau and Erika Weinstein gives tiresome and stilted performance as the main would-be, kind of couple Ichitaka and Iori, respectively. It could be the direction they were given but I wasn’t feeling their performances. I will say that Carrie Savage did a better run out of all the performances in the show than anybody else.
FINAL VERDICT: This is a passable series that doesn’t drag at all but you’ll be bored by some of the characters and irritated by the cliché elements and you’ll wonder why there are even there if they don’t provide anything to the story. I would just give the series a rent rather than buy.
I’m sorry but I’s is very…..
Planet Tyro Rating: VANILLA – 5.5/10
Suddenly, Ani & GSXR noticed the gang members putting Hybrid in the car and they quickly need to think of a plan of sneaking him out. Then out of the blue, someone else in black clothing and mask had a crowbar to break into the car while the gang members went into the convenient store, then he hot-wired the car and swiftly drove away from there, while the gang find out, very pissed and frustrated, shouting “My motherfucking BOUNTY!!!!! You fucking prick!” and the black masked-man shouted, “Tanto tiempo, limp dick folla!” The car then comes up to Ani & GSXR and wondered, “Um, excuse me; our very tired friend is in that car. Can we at least have him back?” The car pulled up to them and then he took off his mask and the person revealed was…..Pancho. “So, what did the Hybrid dumbass done this time? I know all about the bounty and everything.” It seems like Pancho is about to turn him in but GSXR said, “Look, I know he hasn’t been a good fri—“ Then Pancho said, “NO SHIT, He isn’t a good friend. HE GOT ME SHOT!! IN MY ASS, FOR FUCK’S SAKE!! He deserved what’s coming to him and tell one reason why I shouldn’t turn him in?” Then Ani basically stated that if the person turning him in is a cop, they get no reward money. Pancho then said, “Well, fuck, OK……..But when he wakes up, can I just slap him around?” Both girls sighed and gave him permission but not too much.
And as that story ends, the next review will also be about the theme of love….because in this ______yet_______ world, things get fucked up quick…….also, the name of the anime to review next time….
And until then, I’m MAK2.0 aka The Hybrid, bringing all the elements in one format.
I’S – animation by PIERROT/ARMS , distributed by VIZ MEDIA.
THE MIND OF THE HYBRID ONE – my Tumblr page.