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Video Girl Ai
Video Girl Ai
Video Girl Ai
Anime DVD Review

There is music out there that can move me to tears. No surprise there, many people find that just the right pulls of violin strings and emotionally charged vocals have that effect. But a cartoon? And a dated one at that?

Such is the case with Video Girl Ai, a story so sweet and touching and heartfelt and true, so carefully crafted, so poetically perfect that it is poignant and profound, that it will not only move you to tears, but turn you into a gooey, gushy, emo-esque mess.

Video Girl Ai Video Girl Ai establishes itself with the typical "love triangle" concept; the story begins with the painful double heartbreak of two of its main characters: school pals Youta and Moemi decide to confide in each other their 'secret love.' Youta is afraid to admit to Moemi she is 'the one', and is further disappointed when she admits that her secret love is for the popular boy "Takashi", who happens to be Youta's best friend.

Heartbroken, Youta comes across a video store he had never noticed before and decides to rent a video supposedly designed with lonely hearts in mind. He chooses one featuring a strangely costumed girl named "Amano Ai." When he plays her tape she literally comes through his television screen — Her mission: To help those with issues of unrequited love overcome the issues holding them back (in Youta's case, his extreme shyness and uncertainty) and to offer assistance that might help bring the two together.

Video Girl Ai However, due to a flaw in Youta's VCR, Ai's materialization is disrupted, which changes her "programming" in such a way that she progressively behaves less like a "video girl" and more like a real girl. Rather than functioning as a conduit for bringing Youta and Moemi together as required, Ai becomes jealous of Moemi and tries to keep the two apart, while her own feelings for Youta begin to develop into her namesake..."ai" ("love"); feelings and emotions unequivocally forbidden to be experienced or expressed by video girls.

Having been deemed defective, Ai is to be "recalled" by those who created her, even well before her month-long rental period has expired — which culminates into the emotionally-charged tragic-climax which unlocks the floodgates of every functioning tear duct.

Reviewed by Brian Cirulnick, June 2009

Video Girl Ai
Video Girl Ai
Manga Review

We've often compared Chobits to Video Girl Ai, but many newcomers to the anime scene have no idea what "Ai" is all about. Here's your opportunity to rectify that horrible oversight.

Video Girl AiFrom the creator of Iria comes a love triangle too complicated to express in a paragraph, but our hero is too damn shy to express how he yearns. A magical interaction between a "date video" and an electrical short, and poof, instant video-girl. She will help him to win the girl of his dreams, or is Ai really the girl for him? A love triangle within a love triangle!

This is manga with real depth, the characters are multi-layered and complex. All are struggling with the issues of teenage love and just being a teenager. A feeling of naive, childlike innocence runs through this manga, a feeling you'll remember from your youth. Your first crush, and the first time you *were* crushed. Touching, funny and sad, Video Girl Ai plays the heart strings we've all experienced. A manga you'll identify with so strongly, you'll swear it was written just for you.

Reviewed by Brian Cirulnick, February 2004

Video Girl Ai

Video Girl Ai

Video Girl Ai Website Links:

Video Girl Ai Tribute (fan website)

For Heartbroken Eyes Only (Video Girl Ai fanlisting fan website)

Video Girl Ai (OAV) entry at Anime News Network

Video Girl Ai (manga) entry at Anime News Network

Video Girl Ai entry at Wikipedia

Below: The opening titles from Video Girl Ai.

Below: A promotional illustration from Video Girl Ai.

Video Girl Ai

Video Girl Ai

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