Once upon a time, there was an anime in 2008 that was called Strike Witches. The story took place in an alternate retelling of World War II, where instead of the struggles between the Allied and Axis Powers, it was about a military organization of young girls with magical abilities must fight an alien invasion from destroying Earth. The main selling point of this anime? None of the girls wear pants at all throughout the series. Strike Witches was a smash hit in Japan and received a second season and even a full-feature theatrical film. Now, director Kazuhiro Takamura made a new anime that bear similarities to Strike Witches, and that is Vividred Operation.
Spoiler Alert – After the break, I will be talking about the entire episode. I recommend you should watch the episode first if you do not want to be spoiled.
The episode begins with-…with…an ass shot? Not only one, but TWO. Stay classy, Vividred Operation. Our hero, Akane Isshiki, is a middle schooler and has a job as a bike messager to help get money for her poor family. Her little sister, Momo, is surprisingly in charge with the finances of the family. Kenjiro, the girls’ grandfather, is a mad scientist and inventor of the Manifestation Engine. The Engine runs all of the power on Earth, and can cause the end of the world if destroyed.
Akane received a text message that her best friend, Aoi Futaba, is visiting to see her soon. Meanwhile out of the ocean nearby the Engine, the National Defense Forces was under attack by mysterious aliens. Kenjiro knows that the aliens, which he named them the Alones, are after to destroy the Engine. The alien fired two shots, one damaging the airplane Aoi was in, and one that hit the Isskei house with Kenjiro inside.
Akane and Momo rushed to the house to find a motionless body of their grandfather. However, in some freak accident, Kenjiro’s mind was transferred into a ferret plushie that was given as a gift. In his new body, Kenjiro told Akane that he completed in inventing a key that only she can use to stop the alien invasion. On her way to the Engine, Akane discovered that Aoi’s plane crash landed on top of it and rushed her way to the top. Akane made it to the top level, however, Aoi and the plane was sliding off the edge and then fell off. Facing her fear of heights that have been told earlier in the episode, Akane skydives off the Engine to save Aoi, then the key activates, causing Akane to transform into her special suit known as the Vivid System and save Aoi from falling. At the end, Kenjiro explains that Akane and Aoi are able to use the Vivid System and must use it to defend Blue Island from the Alones.
Similarities to Strike Witches
Before I begin, I will say the major difference from this anime and Strike Witches is that none of the main characters are running around in their panties. Just very short hot pants. There are multiple comparisons a fan of Strike Witches will be able to point out after watching the first episode of Vividred Operation. Both of the main leads are related to a scientist in the family and developed a device to unlock their true power. Also in the first episode of both anime, the hero climbs up a tree to help save an animal, showing that they are willing to do anything to help who are in need.
It’s too hard to tell where this anime is going to head and if it will try to be different from its older sister, but I’m looking forward for more. I love how colorful the setting is and the character designs are great. If you’re a fan of Strike Witches, you’ll feel at home with this new series.