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Oh my stars is there some dross lurking at the bottom of my VHS fansubs. The VCR was returned after GAMMACon today [1]so I pulled out one of the tapes I’d set aside for another blast from the past[2].

On the menu today: Combustible Campus Guardress[3], an OAV series from 1994. It turns out that I only have the first two episodes, and I won’t be in any particular hurry to track down the final two episodes.

The premise for Guardress is pretty ridiculous, and knowingly so. Essentially there are remnants of demons from another world who would like to go home, but opening the gate to do so will destroy the world. Inconvenient that.

Fortunately[4] the gate is, deliberately mind you, located on the grounds of Tobira High School, and all of the students are Guardians trained to protect it using a range of “martial arts” attacks.

Said attacks can include waves of kittens, puppies, birds, cooking ingredients, tulips, as well as the more usual (and hence boring) balls of energy. The calling out of attacks and banter between opponents that is expected of this sort of show is here in force, and reasonably well done. This is probably where the knowing parody elements are most obvious, and are quite amusing.

In line with the types of show being parodied, the story is of course a repeat of events from 3,000 years ago. The two main characters Hazumi and Takumi Jinno are, naturally, the reincarnations of the main players from the first time around. Takumi is the gate (or the key to it), and his “sister” Hazumi is his main protector.

Hazumi is best described as an enthusiast. Much like Kei and Yuri are enthusiasts. I do award style points for entering with the line “Heaven’s Warrior, Called By Her Pager”.

Also raising a smile are the episode titles. I didn’t note the episode 1 title, but episode 2 is Nervous Nervous Sweat Sweat Finals Are Scarier than the Enemy.

Less amusing is that Hazumi is actively plotting a relationship with Takumi (on the grounds that they aren’t blood related), whilst dealing with a romantic rival Hime[5]. There are also gratuitously sexist elements scattered throughout the two episodes.

Mostly in fun, although the 2nd episode ends on a cliff hanger promising angst in the remaining two episodes, Combustible Campus Guardress is amusing enough, but not good enough to make me want to track down the rest of it.

[1] I’ll probably write up the panel notes this weekend.

[2] See also: Farewell My Beloved Lupin and Ten Little Gall Force.

[3] Incidentally the English name appears to have been coined by the fan subtitling group Project Daicon.

[4] And I use that word advisedly.

[5] And also, apparently, her mother. Don’t examine THAT too closely.