CYBER CITY OEDO 0808 (1990+)

 

Format: 3 45-minute OVA episodes

 

Rating: R (AC, AL, GV)

 

Type: Sci-Fi

 

American Production: U.S. Manga Corps

 

Japanese Production: Madhouse/Japan Home Video

 

Note: The grades below are based on memory from a year past rather than any recent viewing

Grading

 

Premise:

C

Story:

C

Writing:

C+

Character Design:

C

Animation:

C

Artistic Merits:

C+ 

English Dub:

C

Musical Score:

C

Opener:

C(?)

Closer:

C(?)

 

 

Humor Content:

n/a

Action Content:

C+

Drama Content:

C

 

 

DVD Presentation:

not available

DVD Extras:

not available

 

 

OVERALL:

 

Synopsis

      In the year 2808 the Earth city of Oedo has buildings so tall that they require gyrostabilizers just to keep them upright. Three cyborg criminals - one a pretty boy, one a highly effeminate man, the third an apparent bruiser who’s actually a computer specialist – are serving obscenely long sentences when they are offered a deal: work as Cyber Police, doing the most dangerous and dirty law enforcement jobs, and their sentences will be reduced for each criminal they bring in. Step out of line a little, and their sentences are increased. Step out of line a lot, and explosives in the collars they are forced to wear are detonated - and their boss isn’t shy about hanging the last one over them. In fact, although they enjoy a certain amount of freedom, they are little more than slaves in the end, but that doesn’t stop them from doing the dirty work that needs to be done.

  

The Long View

      Cyber City is a foul-mouthed but otherwise fairly typical sci-fi cop show released as a series of OVAs dating back to 1990. It is very dark and graphically violent and so loaded down with obscenities that they seem forced into the dialogue. The technical merits are average and the characters only somewhat interesting. The dialogue leaves a bit to be desired, but the writing is okay otherwise. The three episodes include an introductory story involving an unusual case of techno-haunting, a very run-of-the-mill story about a new military cyborg killing machine, and a story about a bio-engineered virus that can effectively create vampires; the latter is the best, and may in some small way have influenced story elements of later (and much better) series such as Hellsing.

      I have two quibbles about the series that keep me from giving it a better rating. One is its treatment of female characters. The most prominent female character is a Cyber Police computer records officer who occasionally helps out the main characters, but she has a total of less than two minutes of screen time in each episode. She’s also the only female character in any of the episodes that doesn’t die during the episode. The other quibble is the technology. The robot support unit/overseer for the three convicts/cops is positively unimaginative and archaic for as far into the future as this story is supposed to be. (Seems even more out-of-place given the advanced cyborgs present in the story.) And floppy disks still being used to exchange computer data? Come on. CDs were certainly on the horizon when this series was made.

      Cyber City isn’t one of the better anime series, but if you need a quick sci-fi action fix it might do the job.

 

DVD Extras

      Cyber City has not been released on DVD in the States as of the time of this writing, but the release of the first episode is imminent (3/9/04). It will be released only under the name “Cyber City” rather than its full name and apparently each episode will be on a separate DVD. Obviously I cannot comment on the DVD extras at this time.

 

 

Principle English Voice Actors

Role

Voice Actor

**not available at this time**

 

 

 

 

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