Innocent Venus is an anime that falls into an ill-fated genre: Mecha. I’m not too big of a fan of mecha anime and the crappy cg that usually follows it. So is Innocent Venus guilty of such crimes, or does it successfully defend itself in the court of anime law?
Innocent Venus takes place in a future world where environmental disaster has split humans up into two classes. The upper class, called the Logos, control the technology and live in a shiny city. The poor are called Revenus, and live in slums outside of the city. See the evils of mecha?
The anime follows a bunch of Revenus who are hiding from the Logos for some yet unknown reason. Sana is a little girl who seems to be the key to some kind of secret. Jin is the overly protective
siscon onii-chan figure for Sana, and Jo is the badass fighter. He has both a powered suit as well as a full fledged mecha. There’s also an annoying kid named Gora who I hope is squashed by a mecha very soon.
There’s also another armed group who looks like they’re working to overthrow the Logos. They crash a Logos party and shoot up the place. There’s no explanation to who they are, either. They’re probably looking for Sana, too.
Despite being a mecha, the first episode of this anime was actually pretty good. It did a nice job of introducing the characters and setting up the storyline for the rest of the series. There was plenty of action with the powered suit fight in the beginning, the party shoot up in the middle, and the mecha battle at the end. It still remains to be seen where the plot will lead, but I’m remaining cautiously optimistic.
Character designs are a mix between super generic and somewhat original. Jo and Jin are about as generic as you can get in anime protagonists. Sana is really cute, which makes up for the previous two characters. She reminds me of Franca from Coyote Ragtime Show and Yuuna from Kage Kara Mamoru. The group of ex-military types seems cool, though they might have tried a little too hard to make them seem unique. They resemble Shinigami rejects from Bleach.
The animation quality for Innocent Venus is really good. The fighting scenes are all sweet, especially the first one where Jo is wearing the powered suit. However, this anime suffers from BCGS – Bad CG Syndrome. The CG mecha look terrible compared to the rest of the animation around them. I really wish animators would stop resorting to shiny CG mecha. Other than that, I’d say the animation is excellent.
The first episode didn’t have an OP, though I heard it from the single and it’s sweet. The ED is a mellow electronic sounding piece. It’s somewhat forgettable, but it works well with the actual ED sequence: a giant painting that gets panned around. It reminds me of the first Blood+ ED sequence.
Download the ED: “Brand New Reason” by FLEET
Overall, I’d say Innocent Venus is worth watching. The setting is interesting, and there’s potential here for a good story. If they keep the bad CG to a minimum (which they probably won’t), I’ll probably be able to withstand a few more episodes of this anime.