Creator: Kurata Hideyuki
Length: OVA, 3 Episodes
+ Great, fluid animation
+ Unique character designs
Obviously short series
Read or Die OVA is a short but extremely entertaining. You won't find more intense entertainment in one DVD, I guarantee you that! The animation is simply beautiful and the story isn't so bad either. I watched it for the eye candy and the awesome fight scenes, so if you hold your expectations of a groundbreaking storyline in check, then you'll be satisfied.
3 out of 5
Read or Die OVA Anime Review
Written by: James Lin on 6/18/2003
Read Or Die is a 3 episode OVA (original video animation) liscensed by Sony and Manga Entertainment. Despite this OVA being really short (about 20-25 minutes each episode), it gets the job done. So what's with the title? There is really no other title I can think of that would suit this anime series but don't think this series is all about reading! This OVA is packed with tons of great action and a pretty decent story.
One of the best things I love about this series is the animation and how fluid it moves along. Lots of times you'll
be caught off guard by how fast the action scenes move along! The characters and enviornment are all drawn with lots
of detail. There is some usage of computer graphics but it doesn't stick out too much - so basically it fits well in
the series. The "special moves" that the characters pull off are very spectacular and it is the stuff that makes you w
ant to watch even more.
Since it is a OVA and only 3 episodes, the animation is consistent throughout as one would expect. Animation is not the only thing worth watching since every series/movie needs great characters and a good story. Read or Die somewhat lacks in those two categories because it is only a mere 3 episode OVA, but it makes up for it in its fantastic animation.
I really liked the character designs in this anime OVA except there's hardly any development since it's only 3 episodes long. The main plot is pretty much good vs evil. There's a "dictator" type out to kill all of mankind and he is helped by a bunch of bad guys with some amazing powers. On the side of good we have our "hero", Yomiko. Her nickname is "The Paper" because she controls paper. Seem like a weak power? You'll be amazed how fast she can attack and do other things with them. The Paper is an innocent 16-18 year old and is really shy/passive about everything. Then the complete opposite of her, Nancy, teams up with Yomiko to complete missions and fight off evil. Nancy's power is invisiblity - and the animation really excels with her. These are a few of the main characters of the story. There is also some humor especially in the nicknames of the characters... for example hearing "T-ha Paper!" or "Mr. Gen-tal-MAN!" in regular dialogue and during fights always makes me crack up.
One of the things that impressed me with this OVA is the music. The beats during the OVA really go with Read or Die's fast pace theme and get our (the spectator's) adrenaline moving. So all in all there are three areas where Read or Die really excels in and that is animation, characters, and sound/music.
As one would assume the story isn't all that great mostly because it is a mere 3 episodes - perhaps equivalent to a one and a half hour movie.
So do I recommend it? YES. The U.S. release is by Manga, notorious for releasing mediocre-to-bad products (not the series itself). However, Manga has released Read or Die in very good form. It contains all episodes on one disc and that alone makes Read or Die a steal. It's a great OVA and for a mere 20 dollars you can get your hands on it. I don't know the extras or how the English dubbed voices are so I can't comment on it (as I don't own the DVD as this review is being written). I'm sure the Japanese dialogue is better as it is nearly almost every time - and like I mentioned before, the Japanese dialogue has some very funny moments. So go out and check it out for yourself - it's nearly flawless except for the obvious fact it is very short.
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