While I know that the concept of an anime about a boy/girl and their living female action figures is not new as it has been done before a couple of times like Rozen Maiden and Busou Shinki, this is the first one I saw in its entirety. Question is whether it is a good show. Let us find out as we take a look at Frame Arms Girl.
Genres: Comedy, Action, Slice of Life
Themes: Action Figures, Mecha Musume, Fanservice, Yuri
Number of Episodes: 12
Plot Summary: The show is about Ao, a teenage girl living on her own while her parents work abroad. One day she got a mysterious package containing a little action figure who was sentient. She introduced herself as Gourai, an F.A. Girl and explained that she was sent to Ao to gather data on combat and her emotions. Over time other F.A. Girls were sent to Ao to test Gourai’s combat abilities. The show follows Ao, Gourai, the other F.A. Girls and their daily shenanigans.
The first important fact that apart from the humans and the suburban setting, the F.A. Girls, battle arenas and some drones are all CG. As usual this is to inform readers who have issues with CG in anime. Personally the CG is fine and I have seen far worse. Another important facet is that the F.A. Girls’ designs are indirectly based on the Strike/Brave Witches (Not really but they might as well be.). What I mean is most of the girls’ armor cover their upper bodies…but their booties are bare. In short expect several panty shots. Heck the OP starts with a shot of Gourai’s tooshie. Keep these two facets in mind before deciding to check out this show.
To sum up Frame Arms Girl as a show it is: A cute girl and her cute action figures doing cute things while occasionally engaging in mecha girl battles as Gourai learns more from her experiences about what it means to feel emotions. Of course since the stars of the show are small action figures it means that even the most mundane of tasks, like doing groceries, can become a big adventure and this is part of what makes the show a lot of fun to watch. Being primarily designed for battle it is amusing to see the F.A. Girls living simple lives with Ao when not fighting each other. Speaking of fighting…
As mentioned above the F.A. Girls and battle arenas are all CG and while the quality arenas are nothing to write home about the battles are pretty cool. It is still cute girls wearing badass armor hitting each other with all their equipped weapons and it is all delightfully chaotic. It is cool seeing Gourai executing strategies and her opponents trying to counter them. The rest of the animation is decent. It is a slice of life anime that does not have a spectacular or noteworthy setting so solid quality is all one can ask for and sure enough that is what viewers get. The same goes for the soundtrack with its solid background music during casual scenes and battles. The OP is pretty good though and the ED is neat.
Now shenanigans and cool battles are fine and all but what about the cast and their personalities? Each one is delightful in their own way and deliver fun times and laughs along with solid emotional moments here and there.
- Gourai is the leader who slowly develops more emotions and becomes more expressive.
- Stylet is a tsundere.
- Baselard is a genki.
- Jinrai is a kunoichi style fighter who has a fascination with the Edo-era, meaning most of her gags revolve around her stoic personality and love of old school Japanese customs.
- The Materia Sisters…more on them in a bit.
My favorite of the bunch is Architect for two reasons:
- She reminds me of a smaller KOS-MOS from the Xenosaga series. Acts like her too.
- She is adorable.
As for our leading human Ao, she is a special cutie. See, she does not really fall under a specific anime girl archetype. While it is made clear that Ao gets paid to help with Gourai’s research that does not mean she falls under the “greedy girl” archetype. No, she simply likes that she gets paid. All of her actions and reactions are all what one would expect from a (mostly) positive girl who rolls with the situation she is in. There are other F.A. Girls and human characters but the ones mentioned here are the important ones.
Now back to the Materia Sisters as we discuss the yuri. See, the sisters are sadistic incestuous troll lesbians who are into BDSM. They enjoy teasing the others, especially Stylet for obvious reasons and all the time they are intimate with one another. Not over the top sexual mind you but…they, shall we say, are inseparable. This is a good third facet to keep in mind. Besides the sisters’ antics there are other yurirific moments as well, and when I mean yurirific I do not mean ambiguous. Now while the yuri is not subtle at all, whether it is more than “Oooh! Cute girls touching and kissing each other” I leave the viewers to find out for themselves.
Overall Frame Arms Girl is a fun show to watch about the daily lives of a girl and her sentient action figures who, when not fighting, go on epic adventures that seem mundane to regular people. The animation is solid, the CG is decent, the battles are cool, the yuri is not subtle at all and again it is all-around fun. Readers who like Girls Club style shows and mecha musume style combat who are not sensitive to fanservice or anime CG can check this one out. It is a cool watch.