UFO Ultramaiden Valkyrie

Ok, this show has convinced me that I need to go back to the doctor. I’ve never seen so many nicely shaped, thoroughly uncovered breasts in my life — and not cared.

I mean, really, what’s wrong with me? Do I need to start taking the v-i-a-g-r-a spam seriously?

I downloaded and watched season 1 and the first episode of season 2, plus the S1 special last night. And you know? I just don’t care to keep watching it, even though S2 is where it’s supposed to get good. It actually feels wrong, after the cute/happy/fluffy feel of the first series.

Well, except I didn’t think it was happy or fluffy. So what are my problems with this show?

First off, even back when I was reading about this show on other websites, I had a real problem with Sanada’s catgirl gun. Basically, she gets hyper over the possibility that Kazuto might be just a bit unfaithful to Val, so she starts zapping any female he comes into contact with. A zap from this gun turns an ordinary human woman into a catgirl (yay!) maid (yay!) that is utterly loyal to Val (um, boo?). It doesn’t seem to change any other aspect of their personality, except than the fact that whatever hopes, dreams, and plans they otherwise had are now put on hold so that they can provide free labor service to the Tokino Bath House, and help care for Val.

Right, in other words, they just got enslaved. Oh, they only work in shifts and get to keep vestiges of their former lives — we see various members of the catgirl maid squad holding down jobs, being students, or doing daily chores. And they even get taken on a vacation. But if Ms. Sanada calls, they drop everything and come a-runnin’. When the Tokino household temporarily relocates to space, they pack up and follow, lock stock and barrel. I have a hard time finding humor in enslavement. Even with the free labor, the Tokino Bathhouse only breaks even at best; generally it’s in the red. Which in turn, doesn’t make me think nice thoughts about Kazuto’s common sense.

Then there’s Val herself. It becomes quickly very obvious that she’s profoundly unhappy and has run away, not just from Valhalla, but herself. Bluntly, she’s neurotic. Her being a child isn’t really part and parcel of dividing her soul, it’s an outward expression of her inward insecurity and unhappiness at accepting adult responsibilities. Even when she gets what she apparently wants Kazuto as her husband to be, it stresses her so badly that she regresses into child form again.

All the stuff about “healing her soul” is just nonsense — Hydra is sealed by Akina, but she doesn’t regress. Oh, and there is a serious problem with why Hydra is still in child form in the second season. Mehm dispelled that seal, so Akina would have had to cast another. And why the hell would Hydra have accepted that? It’s been obvious that she’s not going to do anything to Akina; she’s released every other episode yet never tries to take advantage of it. Never mind the fact that there was no reason for to go back to Earth. Well, except to avoid a marriage also. But why the child-form, then?

Kazuto isn’t all that great a hero to me either. He’s an impractical dreamer whose highest goal in life is to run a bathhouse. I thought maybe he was getting something going in that head when he opened the asteroid annex, but no, he hadn’t thought it through. In the end, it was just a deus ex that lasted long enough to “heal” Valkyrie. Kazuto “manned up” for a bit there, at least, and went after her, but still, that was part of his impractical dreaming.

Another person I feel sorry for is Akina. I always hate to see the obvious loser strung out when it’s obvious she’s the loser. Akina is obviously in love with Kazuto. In the last episode, it looks like he’s come to realize it too. Why else would Kazuto say to Akina, after going to all the effort to fight his way to Valkyrie, “Don’t get me wrong. I came to say goodbye to Valkyrie.” There’s only ONE reason he would say that to Akina then and there. But boy, did he change his tune when Valkyrie was offered to him on a platter! Not so much as an “Oh, never mind, childhood friend!” Schmuck. No… SCHMUCK!!!!! SCHMUCK!!!!! SCHMUCK!!!!!

So we’ve got:

  1. A dysfunctional female lead
  2. An illogical/inconsistent secondary character
  3. A bunch of happy slaves
  4. An impractical dreamer cad for a hero
  5. A pining, disappointed (even jilted) lover
  6. And a family that is ready to write Val off as a political asset and marry her to someone of no value to the dynasty, just so she’ll be happy (i.e.: not an embarrassment?)

Now granted, I can’t really complain about that last, but even then, we get cheated of the happy ending so they can continue the series as is.

You know, I’m not seeing the fun here.

I thought for a while today, that maybe this was an effort to create another Tenchi-like story, but in the end, I don’t think so. The fundamental difference is that Tenchi was actually special. And he honestly didn’t know which girl he wanted (arguably, he wasn’t that interested in a relationship with any of them, just yet). Kazuto isn’t special, and he’s already made a choice — he’s just a bit wishy-washy about it. He’s thoroughly ordinary, admits that the reason he was drawn to Val was her appearance, and the only thing he’s got going for him now is that he loves Val. He says, that is. Given that he’s spent maybe ten minutes of his life conversing with her adult form, it’s awful hard to think that he’s still after anything but her tits, even if it’s only subconscious. Assuming she remains adult long enough to let him have at them, that is.

If I were Akina, I think I’d be muttering about idiots that want to hook up with cows, and go looking elsewhere.

UPDATE: I left this comment over at Chizumatic, and include it here since I give the grade.

They destroyed at least two full battle carriers on screen, along with a dozen or two fighters.Off screen, or as points of light, literally hundreds of ships and fighters were destroyed. This didn’t escape my attention; but it’s completely ignored in the show. Hell, the crew at the pirate base got to abandon ship, at least — these guys didn’t.

However, other than her utter callousness where lives are concerned (the battle could have easily ended with two of her sisters being killed), Mehm seems to be the normal one. Granted, this is like saying Attilla the Hun was a nice guy, once you get past the violent, bloody conqueror, but compared to a family of dysfunctional, even non-functional, quasi-siblings, at least Mehm is operating on a “level of state.” As in, kill one person and you’re a murderer, kill a million and you’re a statesman.

Nice fanservice, but lots of scene reuse, and a bunch of reprehensible people; this show gets a D.

Oh, and it occurred to me that the actual count of damaged buildings is 7 or 8; at the end of the first series, all the Princesses come to visit the Tokino Bathhouse, and every one of them crashed their spaceship into a building.

Maybe Steven should have said “The Valhalla royal family is merciless, pitiless, arrogant, manipulative, and very bad drivers.” But that would have made Cyberludite’s classic comeback just a bit off.

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