Posted by psgels on 13 March 2011 with categories: Anime Reviews

The great thing about Read or Die (one of the great things at least) is that you can pretty much watch the OVA and TV-series in any order you’d like. They have one similar character and take place in the same universe, but they’re completely different stories about completely different characters with completely different styles of storytelling.

The TV-series was mostly slow-paced. The OVA’s pacing is fast. It doesn’t care about being solid, and instead its biggest goal is entertainment. It does this with a tight and fast-paced plot and gorgeously animated action scenes. It’s really meant to be an adventure OVA, and does a lot of things right, considering that it’s only an hour and a half long. It’s got a great cast of characters, and especially Yomiko Readman is adorable to watch even if you haven’t watched the Read or Die TV-series.

Like the TV-series though, this is stuffed with neat ideas. The concept of people using paper to fight evil is of course very creative, but again this is just the tip of the iceberg. The different powers and plots of the bad guys in particular are just a delight to watch because of how creative they can get to accomplish their not-so-creative goals (granted, they are bad guys who are evil for the sake of being evil; it’s the ways that they use to destroy the world that are the really interesting part). The plot itself is simple, but effective, neither being too big nor too small for an hour and a half of airtime.

Now, the fast pacing does have the disadvantage is that the only positive thing that I can say about a lot of the side-characters is that they look cool, because we hardly get to know anything about them, the bad guys in particular being a problem with this. Still, for an OVA of this size it definitely could have been done better, and the characters that it does focus on are well explored.

Storytelling: 8/10 – Excellent fast-paced entertainment, though does make a few sacrifices to keep the pace going.
Characters: 8/10 – One-sided bad guys, but the main characters are very enjoyable.
Production-Values: 9/10 – Amazing action scenes.
Setting: 8/10 – Full of neat idea.

Read or Die TV
Yozakura Quartet OVA
Hyper Future Vision: Gunnm

5 Responses

  1. Watcherzero says:

    One of my favourite OVA. I would also argue the baddies arent bad for the sake of being bad, they were created to do a job and they know it, they conciously know they are just tools and their satisfaction is completing the purpose of their creation.

  2. c160 says:

    The best part of the OVA for me is the NancyxNancy fight,so awesome! The fight choreography was really something else!

  3. fluca says:

    Yomiko Readman, to me (a guy who LOVES to read) is simply THE most endearing anime character ever to be animated. She is intelligent, badass and super cute. I saw this OVA many years ago and I still can clearly hear her say “hon” while extending her hand to the bad guy. So cute!
    Also, the series is a hoot to watch and the fight scenes very well choreographed.

    The only sad part is that seeing this ruined the tv-series for me. The moment I saw it wasn’t about Yomiko, I just lost interest…

    Anyways, I’m happy you finally got around seeing it.

  4. MkMiku says:

    This is a cool OVA that I’ve watched multiple times. Every time I seem to notice/enjoy something new. The fighting is great, the bosses are cool…what more could you want?

  5. DangerMouse says:

    Agreed, this is one of my favorite franchises, I loved both the OVAs and the TV series for their strengths.

    The creativity of it all, the secret agents theme (not to mention the secret agent-ish music of the OP of both the OVA and TV series), and the creativity of the action scenes and how they were choreographed was just amazing with every action scene just incredible to watch and the TV series caught me right away with Anita’s actions on the plane really showing that the action scenes were going to indeed hold up surprisingly well in the transition to having to spread out the budget for a full series given that the OVA was just gorgeous.

    It was a lot of fun with really cool action and really likeable characters.

Leave a Reply


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  • AidanAK47
    (Sunday, Oct 4. 2015 04:27 AM)
    God I hate it when subbers hardcode the subs into the video. Makes getting screenshots all the harder.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Oct 3. 2015 09:00 AM)
    It did have some grit to it though.
    Aidan if you have not read akumetsu I would say to read it, however the main plot takes a bit to get going, the ending isn’t great. But I thought it was a pretty exciting/crazy read and I liked the whole stand against the government thing. Good art style as well.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Oct 3. 2015 08:54 AM)
    Some might take issue with the goofy bit with the female lead and think this episode a bit overdramatic. From watching those other takes on the character I was intrigued by him and wanted to know more so based on that I’m looking forward to more of this origin story.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Oct 3. 2015 08:54 AM)
    . I don’t think this’ll top the 90s Dezaki blackjack movie its got a chance of being better than black jack 21. Theres something tense/dramatic about a medical themed show that I like. I don’t know if it’ll get as office political as Team medical dragon.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Oct 3. 2015 08:54 AM)
    And finishing things off…
    Black jack ep1: Its good to see a show here with an actual adult protaganist, I also have the added interest that you don’t really get to see of all things a medical drama/thriller in the anime/manga medium.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Oct 3. 2015 05:17 AM)
    Oh come on now, we’re going the webshort, minimal animated, experimental seven minute episode route with kagewani, good idea for a horror show and for what it is fair enough but theres a full series/movie in there you can get out of this premise, its wasted as a series of 7 minute shorts.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Oct 3. 2015 03:07 AM)
    One of the things that also annoyed me in lance n’ masks and this is a cliche that always particularly grates on me, is that punk/bullying cliche.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Oct 3. 2015 02:23 AM)
    I’m not even going to dignify Ks second season with a chance.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Oct 3. 2015 02:18 AM)
    It looks like I’m sticking with Lupin and One-punch for the season so far. I’ll keep an eye on heavy object.
    I just want sakurako, garo and subete to air.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Oct 3. 2015 02:15 AM)
    Heavy object episode 1: There is potential here for some enjoyment value from the mecha fights, at the start of the episode I felt that but it was robbed a bit of that by some terribly done info dumping, the rest of the episode was dull and just putzed around and end on a cheap hook in the last minute.

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