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Cover: Maiden Japan DVD

Black Magic M-66[1] is an OAV adapted from Masamune Shirow’s 1983 doujinshi. It’s still, mostly, a fun watch but hasn’t dated well. Black Magic M-66 also proves that Shirow’s tendency to excessive fanservice[2] is a long standing trait[3].

Black Magic M-66 is essentially a runaway terminator story, with military units trying to stop the two accidentally released M-66 combat androids from reaching their target. This is a classic case of a plot driven by the Idiot Ball: the test data that shouldn’t have been loaded into the M-66’s is targeting the inventor’s granddaughter Ferris[4].

Ferris is, for want of a better word, useless and somewhat annoying. She is a ditzy blond damsel in distress. Fortunately the other main female character, the journalist Sybel, isn’t useless.

Possibly crazy, simultaneously improbably skilled and unskilled[5], but not useless. 🙂

Sybel obviously ends up saving the day, although the military don’t come across as incompetent either. It’s a joint effort.

There’s a definite sense of humour running through this show, especially with Sybel’s offsider Leakey[6]

At only 48 minutes, Black Magic M-66 simply rockets along and remains a fun show to spend a little time with. The visuals have dated fairly badly, and the early fanservice is somewhat annoying, but this is still worth a look.

[1] Sometimes referred to as Black Magic Mario M-66.

[2] ***COUGH*** Intron Depot ***COUGH*** (and I bet you were expecting me to mention Ghost in the Shell there).

[3] The introductory scene for Sybel, and to a lesser extent, Ferris are basically all fanservice.

[4] As acts of stupidity go, this is close to loading a nuclear warhead into a prototype mobile suit that’s about to be put through testing.

[5] A good pilot in the air, but useless on a motorcycle.

[6] Yes, he’s really called that. He deserves it too.