Full Metal Panic anime review

Full Metal Panic anime review
Sousuke Sagara, a seventeen year old military specialist working for the secret organization MITHRIL, has been assigned to protect the latest "Whispered" candidate Kaname Chidori. To complete this task Sousuke will have to deal with enemies from his past as well as the occasional panty thief. Unfortunately for Sousuke, the toughest part of his mission isn't only protecting Miss Chidori but also getting used to living an average High School students life, no easy task for someone raised on the battlefield.

Wow, it was difficult to write a synopsis of this anime without giving too much away! Despite the somewhat mundane (for anime) premise, this series is anything but. Gorgeous animation, wonderfully written characters, exciting action scenes with interesting and well researched mecha designs, and equal doses of adventure and (sometimes dark) comedy make Full Metal Panic stand tall above the many other titles released along side it this year.

The animation quality is of the same outstanding caliber that we of T.H.E.M. have begun to expect from the wizards at Studio Gonzo. Rich, detailed backgrounds offset and highlight the smoothly animated characters and mecha. The computer aided inking is expertly done and various CG (including water and heat distortion, lighting effects and even fog and smoke) are flawlessly integrated into every scene. Combined with the excellent sound track and effects, this series just begs to be played on a big screen with full surround sound.

However, good animation alone does not a classic make. You need a well-written story and likable characters to tell it, and Full Metal Panic has those as well! Every character, even minor players like Chidori's high school friends, are distinct personalities with their own motives, personal habits, and even facial expressions. The various relationships depicted are real enough to seem plausible without becoming trite, yet fun and interesting to watch as well. The love-hate relationship between Major Melissa Mao and her would-be playboy subordinate Sergeant Kurz Weber is especially amusing.

Being a markedly shounen title, Full Metal Panic has more than its fair share of giant robots, guns and explosions, and it does them all well. While some of the mecha, like the robotic Arm Slave combat mechs, are decidedly fictional in nature, other things like personal weaponry, helicopters, naval ships, even the automobiles seen driving around town, are rendered in meticulous detail. Fans of action will not be disappointed in the slightest, and fans of mecha will be (and most likely already are) scouring the online catalogues for tech books and sketches.

Best of all, Full Metal Panic is fun! Even some of the more dedicated shoujo fans of T.H.E.M., and even a few members who are more into live action Science Fiction and literature *love* this series. It's one of those shows that somehow manages to transcend the usual stereotypes and become something that fans of all stripes can enjoy together. Even if you normally don't go in for action-oriented anime, this remains highly recommended.

Better than review, is a Trailer video of: Full Metal Panic. Watch it now:
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