Fight Ippatsu! Jūden-chan!! (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I have noticed that Hoopla Digital does periodically swap out its available anime content. As some shows are removed (most recently
Antique Bakery and Emma: A Victorian Romance) other shows are added to replace them, such as the
Vampire Princess Miyu OVAs, the very esoteric and mysterious Mononoke (not to be confused with
Princess Mononoke from Studio Ghibli) and the lewd and hilarious
Fight Ippatsu! Jūden-chan!! the English dub of which I just finished last week on Hoopla. To my mind, if you’re not watching the hilarious English dub of this show, you’re doing it wrong. This is an old Media Blasters title and has some familiar
names among the English cast, but some names that were new to me as well, especially the lead characters.
This is ostensibly a science fiction “action comedy” show but is very trope & fanservice heavy, with the usual expected boob and butt shots, but also a weird urination fetish.
The story focuses on main character Plug Cryostat (ぷらぐ・クライオスタット Puragu Kuraiosutatto?), who is a "charger girl". She exists in a parallel dimension to the regular human world. It is the job of "charger girls" to find depressed people and give them a literal "energy boost" that translates into positive emotions in their target and restores their level of mental health to a safe(r) level. Plug is a really good person with a warm heart, but she's shown to be kind of incompetent and a bit of a bungler or "Dojiko" (clumsy girl). She's a lovable screw-up who is always failing to meet her daily quotas and always being forced to do lots of overtime to make up, but also having her pay docked for damaging equipment and other mistakes. She has money problems and is whiny and complains about how hard her job is and how mean her bosses are to her. But in spite of this, she genuinely cares about her targets, tries hard to understand them and the deeper causes of their misery. This earns her rebukes from her superiors as it is going above and beyond what her job requirements actually are. She runs afoul of highly ambitious Arresta Blanket (アレスタ・ブランケット Allesta Buranketto?) who operates in the territory adjacent to Plug's and even starts "stealing" some of Plug's potential targets in her area of responsibility. Arresta is very quick and efficient and has won employee of the month and is highly regarded by upper management for her impressive quota numbers. Arresta takes pride in her work and exudes professionalism and a strict adherence to regulations. She regards Plug as an incompetent Slacker who should just quit the profession of "Charger Girl" altogether. Plug takes offense to this and tries to explain her work philosophy to Arresta, who will hear none of it. Plug remains quietly convinced she's on to something with her more empathetic approach and only slowly does Arresta check Plug's work history and come to the realization that she's never ever had a repeat "charge" client. Arresta may have more raw numbers, but many of her targets are repeaters, while Plug has NONE.
Still, Plug is lazy and likes to goof off and watch an ecchi anime series called "Miracle Witch Milly", which is an incredibly lewd, over the top, trope-y "magical girl" type show with lots of nudity and violence and strong language. She runs into trouble when bumps into a human named Sento who, for reasons left unexplained, can actually see "Charger girls" like Plug and Arresta, even when they're in full "stealth mode". Sento is short tempered and works out his frustrations by clobbering Plug and Arresta with his handy baseball bat. This happens nearly every encounter with them and is humorous if only because it is as ridiculous as it is predictable. Arresta is shown to be a bit of a closet Masochist, finding some sexual arousal in being struck by Sento's bat. She's so uptight otherwise that it makes sense for her to have a secret weird kink like this.
For a completely ridiculous & lewd action comedy as this, the show has a lot of heart and tackles some deep themes in an unexpected way. Plug is a warm and likeable character and it's impossible not to cheer for her. She's fighting against long odds to reform the bureaucracy she works for, but in the end Plug's innovative methods end up saving the day when a real crisis hits.
The English dub of this show is laugh out loud funny; the ADR script probably took a lot of liberties but they pay off in spades. It uses over the top "shock" humor, especially in terms of random expletives in the dialogue, etc. I could do without the urination fetish, which is kinda gross, but still kind of funny at the same time. Pretty sure the Hoopla version is the unedited version, because it didn't seem to hold anything back. My only lament is that the Hoopla version doesn't have the bonus OVAs, which are apparently even crazier than the main story. It would be almost worth tracking down the original Media Blaster's release to see them. The OP and ED are both uplifting, catchy pieces of music. I especially like the End Credits sequence which features a tired but determined Plug, running on a treadmill.
I don't know if I would've enjoyed this ridiculous show nearly as much as I did if I'd only seen the original Japanese dub. The wacky English dub really sells it, I think.