October 29, 2002

Running in the Rain

If you haven't already figured it out, I have a deep attraction to silliness in all forms. I could (and probably will, at some point in the near future) talk about my reasons for that, but instead I think I'll talk about the latest object of my curiousity: Battle Athletes Victory!

For those who don't know what the series is about, it's basically a story of an all-girls sports competition: a bunch of athletically gifted girls go to a training academy (complete with tests) and, uh, train. The best three go to the University Satellite (the transfer happens a little under halfway through the series), and the best one on the Satellite gains the covetted title of Cosmo Beauty. Basic stuff, really. Except overblown to the point where the midterm involves hauling a giant stone wheel down a (very steep) cliff and over a field of landmines. Overblown to the point where a bicycle race takes place on a thin path that bears uncanny resemblance to a rollercoster. This is not a sports show that takes itself seriously. For further evidence, I submit the main character, Akari, who seems destined for greatness, being the daughter of the greatest Cosmo Beauty ever. Except she's whiny, scared, and, when under pressure, takes refuge in a painted cardboard box with the words "Akari's House" on the side.

Of course, there are some serious parts, especially the important races (like the qualifying race for the Satellite), but they're done well enough to accentuate the humor rather than kill it. The characters are solid, even if a few of the minor ones were obviously made entirely for comic relief. It's not epic or high art, but it's fast and fun.

Besides, it's a school full of athletic girls! Say it with me: L-E-S-B-I-A-N-S. Whoo yeah! A whole series just begging to have dirty fanfiction written about it that asks the question, "Is that position even possible?" The answer is always, of course, "Wanna find out?" (Actually, some of the best parts involve the show mocking the imagined lesbian connections. I love a series that understands it's own excesses like that)

By the way, the post title comes from the tendancy of this series to have rain appear conveniently in time for dramatic scenes during races, and dissapear immediately after someone crosses the finish line.

Posted by David at October 29, 2002 01:39 AM


I have to admit I love this show. It does go over the top, but for some reason it just works for me. And I fully admit that there were a few episodes of this that for some reason made me cry my eyes out, but then again I'm just a big sap. I want my very own Gregory House.

The only part about the series I didn't like was the ending. They really should have ended it about 3 episodes before it did.

(Oh, and don't confuse this with the three episode OVA Battle Athletes, which I didn't really like as much).

Posted by: gregory at October 29, 2002 02:45 AM

and of course, in classic Gregory style, he infected me with an appreciation for it too.

although it took a little while for the kink in my head to let me slide past the (to me) obvious BDSM tones of trotting dozens of baeutiful girls through dozens of "training classes."

actually, i need a momemt.

ok, better.

i liked best the episodes where the individual girls face off against their inner demons. watching the series all the way through, one can get sick of Akari, but i really liked the majority of her classmates.

over the top and wacky, but also serious and soulful. i think it has something for everyone, but not everything for someone.

did that make sense? hrm.

Posted by: chris at October 30, 2002 06:53 PM

Thanks to lousy inventory controls of my DVD rentel service BA-Victory #8 was my introduction to the Battle Athletes saga. And it was number 41 in my queue! Well, I had the first soundtrack from BV-Vic (Hop!) and immediately fell in love with the music. This anime is soooo much fun and did I say that I love the music?. The games at the final arena had a 10% slight Pokemon feel (I think it was the aliens) but I got over it.

So, the next exposure from the surprise-surprise rental service was the first of the OVA of the original BA. What a chance. The music reeks in comparsion (generic cinema instead of great neo-classical j-pop) yet much better animation but a script that takes itself WAY to seriously for the first half. But there is a scene that had me laughing too loud for my neighbors (damn paper-thin apartment walls) at the end of the first half on the please-don't-hurt-me-raving-lesbian theme. If it wasn't just soon funny, I would be upset at the homophobia.

But the artwork so so good. If my rental doesn't get it together I will be shopping for a new one!

I LOVE AKARI!!!! Kris, you can share, right????

Posted by: Tanya440 at February 11, 2003 04:19 PM

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