COMIC A7 Review - 801 T.T.S. Airbats

Discussion in 'Entertainment' started by TriShield, Mar 5, 2003.

  1. TriShield

    TriShield Super Moderator® Staff Member

    Jul 6, 2001
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    Japan Air Self Defence Force Tactical Training Squadron 801 T.T.S. Airbats (Aozora Shojotai)
    Studio Fantasia/JVC, 1994-1996
    ADV Films, 1996, 2002
    Directed by Yuji Moriyama (Project A-Ko, Geobreeders), Shin Misawa, Junichi Sakata (DNA²) and Tohru Yoshida (Bastard!!, ZOE: Idolo).
    Rated 15+ for some violence, nudity, suggestive sexual situations and strong language.

    by areaseven -

    When aviation mechanic (and anime fanboy) Takuya Isurugi is transferred to the 801st Tactical Training Squadron, he gets more than he bargained for. Moderated by hard-headed veteran ace Mitsuru Konishi, the "Airbats" are an all-female aerial acrobatic team consisting of loose cannons Miyuki Haneda and Arisa Mitaka, karaoke freak and gambling genius Sakura Saginomiya, and junk food lover Yoko Shimorenjaku. Both Haneda and Mitaka do not get along with each other, and their rivalry worsens when they both fall for Isurugi. But with the entire JASDF having doubts about the team, the Airbats must work as a team or face total disbandment.

    Story: B-
    It's Top Gun meets Kimagure Orange Road (and I'm not talking about KOR's infamous "Tap Gun" episode), only more ecchi and a lot sillier in the last four episodes. The characters grow on you, even though the backgrounds of most of them aren't well-explained.

    801 T.T.S. Airbats had the potential to be a full-fledged TV series. Unfortunately, after episode 7, the whole OAV just ended, leaving viewers feeling empty.

    Animation: B+
    It's nice to know that Studio Fantasia (Agent Aika, Najica Blitz Tactics) collaborated with the JASDF to give 801 T.T.S. Airbats the feel of an actual Japanese military base and a Kawasaki T-4 training plane. The animation quality is average on the first three episodes; just slightly below Area 88 in terms of quality. It gets better on the later episodes, especially when the Airbats encounter the world-famous Thunderbirds acrobatic squadron. Episode 7 is a mixed bag as the animation suddenly goes digital, which looks weird compared to the cel art of the earlier episodes.

    Soundtrack: B+
    Seikou Nagaoka (Tenchi Muyo!, El-Hazard) uses a decent pop/rock score to set the mood of the series.

    Sub vs. Dub
    801 T.T.S. Airbats features Shinichiro Miki (Allen in Escaflowne, Takumi in Initial D) as Isurugi, Aya Hisakawa (Skuld in Ah! My Goddess, Yuki in Fruits Basket as Haneda, Ai Orikasa (Ryoko in Tenchi Muyo!, Takeuchi in Blue Seed) as Mitaka, Kikuko Inoue (Belldandy in Ah! My Goddess, Kasumi in Ranma 1/2) as Saginomiya, Yukana Nogami (Kotoko in Chobits, Meilin Li in Card Captor Sakura) as Shimorenjaku, Norio Wakamoto (Coach Ota in Gunbuster, Vicious in Cowboy Bebop) as Konishi, Hideyuki Umezu (Nubata in Outlaw Star, Yukinojyo in Tenchi Muyo! Ryo-ohki) as Kengamine, Mahito Tsujimura (Foss in Berserk, Mitchum in Zone of the Enders) as Tsukamoto, Nobuaki Sekine as Yumioka, Toshihiko Seki (Legato in Trigun, Mousse in Ranma 1/2) as Hiyama, and Rei Sakuma (Kazumi in Gunbuster, Shampoo in Ranma 1/2) as Jeger.

    As for ADV's dub, forget about it. It's not as funny as the japanese dialogue.

    DVD Extras: B
    The DVD includes textless ending, character sketches and a live-action promo featuring the original japanese voice talents. It's great to see what these seiyuu look like (Aya Hisakawa is kawaii), but then again, maybe not (Kikuko Inoue's got a great voice, but her teeth are nasty!).

    Unfortunately, the extras feel empty. ADV should've included some background information on the JASDF and the Kawasaki T-4 training plane.

    The Bottom Line
    801 T.T.S. Airbats is definitely no Macross Plus or Area 88, but if you're into comedy and ecchi, pick it up at your local video store.

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