Comic Books Magazine

Under Those Piles of Reports: Circuit Angel

Posted on the 07 August 2013 by Kaminomi @OrganizationASG

Circuit AngelBetween resting from my month-long trip, drooling over fictional muscular eighteen year olds, and getting mentally prepared for university next month, I’ve taken the time to sit down and watch another anime (with catchy music, mind you) from the 80’s.

While the previous one – Tobikage — was a short series composed of more than twenty episodes, Circuit Angel is only a forty-five minute long OVA. And seeing how it has no previous adaptation — let it be manga or anime — you can imagine how challenging it was for the staff to include a whole story and present the characters at the same time, all while avoiding to rush things too quickly.

Before developing that point, it’s best to introduce the story and the main characters of the OVA at least.

Circuit Angel (Gang)

After watching the first few minutes of Circuit Angel, it’s safe to label the main character Mariko as your average 80’s anime girl. She’s kind, cute, has at least one romantic interest and/or deceased parent figure. The only notable difference that separates her from countless girls of her age is her talent and passion for motorcycling (Thus giving sense to the title Circuit Angel). Mariko’s particularity gains the attention of rich kid Sho, an 80’s version of a famous Seto Kaiba…

Like I’ve mentioned before, introducing the characters while including a deep story can be a challenging, especially if you add the fact that it has to fit into something of forty-five minutes. So, even when I had trouble with the lack of depth of most characters, I forced myself to take into consideration the time they didn’t have, and the probable elements they had to cut down in order to make their OVA be as decent as possible. As good as their excuse is, I admit to having a hard time viewing the OVA during most moments. Starting off with the characters who didn’t get the chance to get developed.

If it weren’t for his boyish and rebellious personality, I never would have thought that Keiichi was a main character, since out of all the other characters (excluding Mariko), he’s the one with the most screen-time, but ironically he appeared to me as a character with a lack of presence. Perhaps this was due to the story focusing on Mariko only which more or less has rendered the existence of Keiichi useless in my opinion.

Keiichi is not the only one in this case, since there’s also the supporting characters such as Mariko’s friend Hiroko and her boyfriend, Jiro. Under normal circumstances, I wouldn’t pay too much attention to the supporting characters, but after doing a five-minute research on the OVA’s voice actors, I learned that Hiroko’s voice actress was also the singer of the opening and ending themes of the OVA. I’m not too sure about what you readers might think, but I would have expected more from Hiroko as a character instead of seeing her play the unnecessary-but-supportive role.

Circuit Angel

Another element I’d like to talk about would be the music and sound effects, which, at moments, seemed really displaced and made scenes rather awkward and unpleasant to watch. Regarding the music, I honestly think they could have done a better job in using them during certain moments. For example, using upbeat music (and I don’t mean pop music) while Mariko drives gives a much better impression.

Speaking of impressions, my general thoughts on this OVA could have changed completely if it weren’t for the absence of expressions and close-ups. And during crucial moments, mind you!

If I remember correctly, I was pretty frustrated with the way the staff decided to play a hospital scene, where Mariko and Keiichi meet Sho. Seeing a shocked Mariko (and not her dropping the vase 5.2 seconds after Sho enters the room) or a close-up of a surprised Keiichi once he learns of Sho’s intentions would have made the whole scene much more tolerable.

And for the few elements that I didn’t see as terribad, there’s the opening theme and the story. Well, the story needed a little more punch if the staff wanted the intrigue to be interesting in our eyes. Also, it couldn’t have hurt if it were a story focused on Mariko rather than a restaurant employee.

Circuit Angel Mariko

And there you have it. Circuit Angel wasn’t bad, but it certainly wasn’t good in my eyes. Tough luck next time, guys.

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog