The Only Vivid Things In Vividred Operation Are The Colors
Do not be confused by its rainbow-inspiring name – Vividred Operation is a grey magical girls show that tries to mimicking its predecessors but does a lousy job.
What do you get when you combine the magical girl elements from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha with the fighting scenes from Strike Witches?
The short answer would be Vividred Operation. The long answer would be a big chunk of clichés seasoned with plagiarism with some obscene butt-shots on top. There is nothing original or exciting about Vividred. The whole magical ferret sidekick thing has grown stale, and so have matching color outfits, tasteless butt-shots and silly transformation scenes. But what really did it for me was that Vividred is directed by Takamura Kazuhiro, the director who did wonders with the Strike Witches franchise. Vividred does take some elements from Strike Witches. Unfortunately these are mostly superficial or bad parts that would never have made it passes the drawing board if this really did happen to be part of the Strike Witches franchise.
The story behind this show is simple: an alien force known as the “alone” threatens to destroy the world’s power source. As it happens only several young girls with a certain aptitude for becoming magical girls can defend the world against this alien force. The “alone” seem to have been closely tailored after the Neuroi from Strike Witches. They look similar, have their signature laser weapons and even sound like them. The girls have matching suits of armor that only differ in color (blue, red, yellow etc.). The magical armor immediately makes the girls apt at flying elegantly in the sky, enhances their physical powers beyond human strengh, gives them perfect aim and apparently teaches them some very useful fighting skills. Oh, and the girls can merge together in a procedure that is nothing more than an innocent kiss but is lewdly referred to as docking…
There’s nothing wrong with Vividred Operation’s outer appearance. However the series as a whole is nothing more than a simulacrum of previous magical girl and fan service shows. In the last couple of years expectations from the magical girls genre have skyrocketed thanks to the creativity of titles like Nanoha Strikers and Madoka Magica. Into this explosive environment comes Vividred Operations and makes us appreciate just how good we had it so far. In other words, instead of advancing the magical girls genre it disappoint us to the point of viewing nostalgically backwards into the past.