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Cyberteam in Akihabara #2: Cyber Trouble PDF Print E-mail
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R1 DVD Reviews
Tuesday, 04 May 2010 00:00
Cyberteam in Akihabara"Cyber Trouble" isn't so much a description of what the heroes of Cyberteam in Akihabara are in, as much as a description of what the series is in. When a) the series resorts to adding a little girls-love in there, and b) you find yourself liking the villains far more than the heroines, it's probably a safe bet that something has gone horribly wrong...

6 - White Prince
Hibari's still dreaming of her prince, and has somehow gotten it into her head that if she can just make the perfect curry, then her prince will come. That's a daft idea to start with - and when Susume and Tsugumi insist on helping her out, you know that nothing good can come from the idea. Shooting Star, meanwhile, has called on all three of his operatives, hoping that a combined effort by the three of them will succeed where they've failed individually. Shooting Star has also realised that young girls can be more vulnerable to matters of the heart than anything else, and instructs the birds to use that as their approach. It's just a shame that they don't understand the concept of "teamwork" - a problem that the Cyberteam are also having at their curry-making session...

Ladies in troubleWorn out

7 - Billiken
There's a new girl in town, looking to find her way to the school that Hibari and the others attend - and make a few quick yen off letcherous guys along the way. On arrival, her brief meeting with the principal drops a rather blunt hint that Kamome is destined to become a member of the Cyberteam - a trio she already seems to know all about. Her first meeting with the Cyberteam doesn't exactly seem to impress her, but along with her PetaPi Billiken she seems determined to join the group. But why would she want to? And given her lousy attitude, why would Hibari, Tsugumi and Susume want her..? In short, because she's the girl with the answers...

TsumugiKamome

8 - The Fifth Member
When Hibari receives a message disk in her school locker, she's convinced that it's a confession of love - could it be that her prince has finally come? Susume and Tsugumi aren't so convinced - true princes would be more direct, and who'd be sending a confession to Hibari anyway - and when the message disk refuses to play in Susume's player, the mystery gets deeper. The girls are eventually able to decipher a request to meet behind the school gymnasium, though, and so off Hibari goes to meet her prince - who turns out to be a rather shy girl by the name of Uzura, who's madly in love with her. So, what to do when Hibari has a girl wanting to get all lovey-lovey with her? Get her a boyfriend, quickly...

Yuri!Can't handle the truth

9 - Hot Spring
It seems that Shooting Star has given his three leading ladies some time off, which they're using to head for the hot springs - although they hadn't quite planned to be going together. Still, a holiday is a holiday - even if the train journey into the mountains does leave them rather too long to be with their own thoughts. For each of them, it's been a year since fate brought them to Shooting Star's door...

Heading for the hotspringsShooting Star

10 - Decisive Battle of Akihabara
Akihabara's in chaos, as the Cyberteam are having to fight off an attack that's far more dangerous and determined than Shooting Star's ladies usually come up with. The reasons for this go back to the day before, which began simply enough with Kamome giving the others a simple lesson is basic battle technique. Which they were completely ignoring. It also began with Shooting Star once again showing his displeasure at the ladies' lack of success - and leaving them with perhaps their last chance to prove their worth. Angered at being put under such pressure, the only people they can take their anger out on is the Cyberteam themselves - and with Hibari and the others being so lax with their own training, this should be one the bad girls can win, right..?

Not so perverted todayCornered

I'm going to look at the good aspects of this volume first, as - shock and all that - there's actually good here. I'm slowly beginning to think that Shooting Star and his trio of sidekicks aren't going to turn out to be the true villains of the show, but that they're acting more as "facilitators" for Hibari and the others by helping them reach the point where they can properly control their Divas and fight as a team. The main reason for this growing suspicion is the amount of work that goes into developing the personalities of the three women, giving us their real names, letting us see their real lives, and how they came to be in Shooting Star's employ. Episode 9 provides the bulk of this, and by the end of that episode I was in the unusual position of being more inclined to cheer Hatoko, Miyama and Jun on (for those are their names) than I was to cheer for Hibari and co.

That's not just down to the ladies being better-developed characters - they're also better fighters, with better motivations, and far more in control of what they're doing. Everytime the Cyberteam have been in battle, though, it's mostly them cowering in a corner while their Divas - which seem to act on their own and don't need the girls' instructions - do the hard work. There's no reason given to cheer for them, and with all the infighting that goes on (particularly between Tsugumi and Susume) they don't make themselves any easier to like.

The arrival on the scene of Kamome and Uzura may eventually change that, though. Kamome seems to be the one person on the team who actually knows what's going on and has something of a plan, while Uzura's pure love for first Hibari and then Kamome adds a little bit of comedy that actually works, unlike most of thos show's attempts at humour. Episode 8, where Hibari and Tsugumi try to put Uzura off her love chase, is the comedy highlight of the series so far and probably the first time I managed to raise a smile at the girls' antics. Perhaps there's hope for them yet.

Despite a few glimmers of hope that the show could get better over its run, though, I'm still far from convinced. The story is non-sensical, episodes seem to end on cliffhangers that get ignored when the next episode goes off on another tangent, Shooting Star and the school principal have yet to make an appearance where either of them talks sense... These and many other failings combine to create a story that I don't care about, based around heroines that I don't care about. It's no wonder I ended up cheering on the bad guys. Not a series that I could recommend at this point.

Rating - **

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