Monday, December 19, 2011

Review: A.D. Police (1999)

A.D. Police ~To Protect and Serve~ (1999) is a Japanese science fiction anime about a police squadron who must battle boomers (i.e., robots in rogue) before the entire Genom City (formerly Tokyo) falls to these devastating machines. There are twelve episodes in the two-CD disc case.

Based upon earlier popular police-crime drama shows, such as NYPD Blue and Hill Street Blues, this police squadron use futuristic high-tech weapons to destroy these machines. Genom City, after a major earthquake that shattered almost the entire city, used robots to rebuild its city infrastructure and public works. However, if these robots go in rogue (lose their internal capabilities to function properly), they become psychopathic boomers and destroy/kill anyone or anything in their paths. This is where the A.D. Police come where the traditional police cannot handle these situations.

Genom Corporation, which has a major influence in Genom City, develops military and construction robots, who eerily resemble the Terminator film series. The A.D. police monitors illegal sales of Genom robots and rush to the scenes. Two major characters in this story are Kenji Sasaki, an aloof, quick and ambitious bad-boy cop who always does things his way and his new partner, Hans Kleif, a light-hearted but serious German pretty-boy transfer to help the squadron after Kenji loses his former partner in a boomer accident. Hans has no recollection of his childhood memory and has a bomb fragment in his head. The audience will see the events in this series mostly through Kenji's eyes although the director does consider Hans' perspective as well.

Boomers (rogue robots) were a popular story device back in the 1990s. Many animation producers were creating Bubblegum Crisis investigative spin-offs to ride the hype. The last few episodes reveal a detrimental climax not only for Kenji but also for people close to Hans. This is where viewers would find this series the most interesting. However, It leaves little behind to appreciate once it ends. If you are a Bubblegum Crisis fan, you may want to keep this in your video library. Is it original and innovative? Not really, this is its weakness. However, the soundtrack is very nice to listen. Overall, it is a good show to watch if you have nothing to do. The Bubblegum Crisis series is much better for serious watchers. This show is also available on DVD.

A.D. Police Trailer

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