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Leda: Fantastic Adventure of Yohko (VHS Cover)

Leda: Fantastic Adventure of Yohko (VHS Cover)

Leda: The Fantastic Adventure of Yohko has to be one of the earliest[1] Original Animation Videos ever released, and is still well worth your time. 1980s OAVs are a fascinating part of anime history, and many influential creators did a lot of their early work as OAVs.

Directed by Kunihiko Yuyama, Leda is an odd beast with a distinctive visual style that still commands attention. The retro styled magitek, odd critters, and general flavour of the setting are well worth paying attention to, as is Yohko herself as one of the prototype Magical Girl Warriors.

So what is Leda: The Fantastic Adventure of Yohko actually about? Yohko Asagiri composes and records a melody on her Walkman to give her the courage to confess to the boy she’s been crushing on.

Due to [SPOILER DELETED] Yohko is then summoned to the world of Ashanti to become the Warrior of Leda, save both worlds, and find the courage to confess to the boy after all.

Appearances[2] and motivation[3] to the contrary, Yohko is a fun heroine who never loses agency and is entirely responsible for saving herself (and everybody else). After one of the classic double take moments in anime[4], Yohko adapts quickly to the strange world she’s in and gets on with the job.

Leda: The Fantastic Adventure of Yohko is still worth watching, and at 70 minutes won’t take up too much of your time.

Today I watched my old VHS copy[5] but you don’t have to since I’ve found what I think is a better quality copy on YouTube. Enjoy!

[1] Wikipedia credits Dallos from 1983 as the first OAV

[2] That isn’t quite a chainmail bikini on the cover. It is close enough though.

[3] It is all about the boy that we never meet or even get to see his face.

[4] At about 9 minutes in. Always good for a laugh, even if you know it’s coming.

[5] My VCR still works! Who knew?