2017 Summer of Anime – Fight! Iczer-One

7 Fight! Iczer-One

The ’80s were a special time.

Unbeknownst to schoolgirl Nagisa Kanou, she is in danger.  Well, actually the whole world is in danger because it’s being invaded by the entirely female alien race known as the Cthulhu (or Cthuwulf) by way of the parasitic vedims, which are infecting and replacing humans all over.  But, Nagisa is specifically in danger thanks to the fact she’s been chosen by Iczer-One to be her partner.  Who is Iczer-One?  She is an android driven by the desire to defend the Earth from its invaders.  She’s powerful on her own, but in order to defeat the Cthulhu for good, Iczer-One needs Nagisa to love and synchronize with her to unlock her true potential.  Can Nagisa find it in her heart to help the person she believes has brought disaster into her life?  Kinda.

Two anime in a row with a main protagonist named Nagisa?  Pure coincidence, believe it or not.  I actually didn’t know much of anything about Fight! Iczer-One before watching it.  Bought it at Anime Weekend Atlanta last year because it was only $10 (hella affordable for the win) and I like ’80s/’90s sci-fi anime.  Just something about the way they look, ya know?  That’s my jam…wait.  I’ve said this before.

So yeah, Iczer-One.  It’s a’ight.  Nagisa is a bit of an annoying lead heroine, but so were a lot of lead heroines back then.  Also can’t really blame her for her attitude toward helping Iczer-One.  Yes, Iczer-One is trying to help the Earth and is all, “I love you, Nagisa,” but Nagisa’s life goes to hell thanks to that.  One could argue that would have happened anyway thanks to the alien invasion, but hey, Nagisa’s just a high-schooler.  Can’t really expect her to go into warrior mode at the flip of a switch.  Just would have been better had she shown some more backbone.

I like the titular Iczer-One, though.  Goofy outfit aside, she’s pretty cool.  Her antagonist “little sister” Iczer-Two wins in the outfit department, but I didn’t think she was as neat as Iczer-One.  Iczer-One had motivation and strength behind her, whereas Iczer-Two had the infallible “That’s what I do!” mentality.  Other villains were pretty meh.  Cobalt and Sepia were fine, Sir Violet didn’t do much, and Big Gold was…baffling.  Yes, its name is Big Gold, and it has ties to Iczer-One.  Which is another complaint of mine.  Their relationship wasn’t explained terribly well, and I had to read up on the series to understand just what had transpired between them.

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“Can’t wait to put her in that damn robot.”

Okay, let’s talk some more positives!  This OVA looks really cool.  (Le gasp, right?)  The characters, the aliens, and the backgrounds hit that sweet spot for me.  Oh, and the mechs!  They’ve got a sleek but powerful look to them.  I doubt they’re in the “Giant Robot Hall of Fame,” but I thought Iczer-Robo and Iczer-Sigma were legit.  Especially Iczer-Robo.  The heroines’ giant robot loses an arm at one point but it keeps on trucking through the rest of the OVA.  What a trooper.  The vedims are neat in a disturbing way.  I was getting some definite Dire Wraith vibes from them.  It was also pretty gruesome whenever they revealed themselves by tearing out their human skin.  Hadn’t watched an anime with that kind of body horror in a hot minute, so it really caught me off guard.  So yeah, if you’re interested in this series, watch out for that.

This being a sci-fi OVA from the ’80s with a mostly female cast, I wasn’t surprised at the amount of boobs that showed up on screen.  Was jarring once or twice, but for the most part the nudity was just there.  No titillation, really.  Just there.  Aside from Nagisa’s outfit after she agrees to help Iczer-One.  I’m not sure she wore a skirt so much as a washcloth wrapped around her waist.  Whoever designed that was definitely a leg man.  I actually found that more amusing than anything.

That might be all I have to say about Fight! Iczer-One.  I think the children would say shows like this are “my aesthetic.”  (Am I using that right, younglings?)  Main characters were mostly fine, it felt like an anime version of Rom: Spaceknight (I love me some Rom), and I love the way it looks.  But, every other character was just there to die, the Cthulhu were in desperate need of more backstory, Big Gold’s explanation was confusing at best, and the series felt a little too hollow.  It’s a 6 or 6.5 for me.  I do want to check out the two sequels, though.  One’s out of print, and the other is only on VHS, so it might be a while before that happens.