Steel Angel Kurumi

July 22, 2012

Imagine if you have a maid who is strong enough to lift and carry anything hundred times her weight. Imagine if you have a maid who is faster than the speeding bullet, train or Superman. Imagine if you have a maid whose unrivalled loyalty would put Hachiko to shame. Imagine if… Hey wait a minute. Would that be a maid anymore? So it is in the case of Steel Angel Kurumi that I thought these all-multi-purpose artificial humanoid should serve its purpose well in the development of mankind instead of being used as modern warfare weapons by the army. Of course there is more than meets the eye to these super human maids knows as Steel Angels and their purpose of being created.

Set in the Taisho era (circa 1912), it is a wonder why we have such high-tech advanced technology in an era whereby development is just picking up in Japan. Do you know what a steam powered locomotion is? Yes, it is that era. So having these Steel Angels that are so lifelike would actually be unthinkable at that time. But instead of really focusing on the dark sinister truth that the reason Steel Angels were made (that will be much later towards the end), we are going to see the misadventures of one Steel Angel in particular, the pink haired Kurumi who was accidentally awakened by a weak (read that as being bullied) priest boy in training during a dare. You know when a baby bird hatches and the first living thing in front of its eyes will become its mother? Yeah, the same thing when a Steel Angel awakens by a kiss from her master.

Episode 1
Dr Ayanokouji feels Angel Heart Mark II will be the trump card that will save mankind as he looks at his mechanical doll, Kurumi floating unconsciously in a test tube. Meanwhile Nakahito Kagura is being forced to come along with his brat friends to Ayanokouji’s mansion to rescue a girl. Rumour has it she was kidnapped, dissected and only her head was left in a jar pleading for help. Since Nakahito comes from a family of Onmyouji, that’s why they’re bringing him to defeat the evil doctor. Along the way, they pass by a military excursion but decide to leave seeing they don’t want any trouble with them. But this means the plan to invade Ayanokouji’s mansion is still on. Seems the military is bent on bringing that doctor back too and is making their way over. Hmm… What is that huge thing they are transporting? The brats sneak into the mansion and pushes Nakahito down into the dark place to get the job down. He makes his way through the dark hallways and corridors and it seems the place is like a creepy experimental lab. The brats hear funny machinery rumbling noises and think it’s the evil doctor getting mad. They start getting scared and flee, leaving Nakahito behind. That kid enters a room and sees an unconscious mechanical doll, Kurumi. A slight tremor jolts the place but it thrusts Kurumi forward. Nakahito and Kurumi’s lips meet and this activates her. When she opens her eyes, she starts calling him master and gets all clingy over him. Ayanokouji rushes to the scene and is puzzled over her activation when the ceiling collapses. It is Dr Reiko Amagi on a huge robot and she is going to bring him back to the military.

Episode 2
A group of men are meeting and discussing the emergency situation of Ayanokouji’s Steel Angel has been activated with Angel Heart Mark II. They are very concern about this and can’t afford to allow this to go unchecked. Meanwhile Amagi wants Ayanokouji to return to the military and continue to do research on Steel Angels but he refuses because he doesn’t want them to be killing machines like her Kongo. He then orders Kurumi to destroy Kongo. Eh? What did he said of not turning them into a killing machine? I guess it’s not a human life so it’s fine. Kurumi refuses because she doesn’t recognize who this strange old man is. He tells her he is her creator and she misinterprets he is her mother! When the other soldiers surround the place, the support Kongo was on gave way. A slab falls on Kurumi as Kongo grabs hold of Nakahito. Amagi has no choice but to use Nakahito as hostage. But Kurumi breaks out from her slab, destroys Kongo’s arm with a punch and saves Nakahito in lightning speed! Wow. Kongo continues to attack but Kurumi stops its brute strength with her hands. Then she tosses it in the air like a beach ball and kicks it away! She makes it look so easy. Ayanokouji wants Kurumi to rescue him but she doesn’t feel like it till Nakahito mentions for them to just get out of here. Ayanokouji brings them back to a shrine. Nakahito rushes into his brother’s arms, Kamihito, proclaiming how scared he was. Seems Kamihito and Ayanokouji know each other. Kurumi gets jealous because somebody else than her is hugging her master and throws Kamihito up on the roof. Meanwhile the soldiers find Amagi stuck to a tree. They report that their target got away but found a woman among the rubble. Why aren’t they in a hurry to bring her down? They want to see her pantsu, do they? Amagi reports her failure to the general and will accept any punishment. But Amagi wants him to come see an object of research she recently obtained. Ayanokouji and Kamihito talk to Nakahito to find out how he activated Kurumi. Did he do anything weird? He remembers the kiss but is too shy to tell. They kept pestering him so this annoys Kurumi. Guess what she did? Eventually Nakahito reveals the kiss though it was an accident. Ayanokouji thinks it’s impossible but all Kurumi cares is that her master woke her up with the power of love! I guess it beats whatever speculations they explained about her awakening. Not that she or I could understand. Elsewhere in a lab, Amagi shows the general another Steel Angel she got. This second one called Saki was developed by Ayanokouji in absolute secrecy. The general could even joke how life-like it is. Yeah, think of touching her boobs? Noting that there are 2 Angel Heart Mark II with different sizes, Amagi says the smaller one fits Saki’s heart size. Again the old geezer could joke the bigger one is meant for bigger boobs. Haha… Amagi is going to do her best to get Saki working.

Episode 3
The general introduces Amagi to Dr Brandow of the British Empire and wants them to work together in activating Saki. Brandow had worked with Ayanokouji in developing the Steel Angel Project when the latter was studying abroad. Ever since, Brandow has also conducted his independent research at the British Royal Academy. Nakahito thought he is having a nice morning dream till he realizes he is sleeping in the bosoms of Kurumi. He screamed like as though he saw a ghost. He is apparently embarrassed by this and is acting strange during breakfast. Kurumi thinks he is not feeling well and though his body temperature may be slightly high, Kamihito assures that is a sign he is healthy. Ayanokouji visits Kamihito to tell him that his mansion is surrounded by the military and it has become their possession.  He also notes that Saki and the Angel Hearts have been taken but is assured they’ll not awaken Saki since this the technology they have in this era will make it impossible. As Nakahito and Kurumi sit around bored in the room, Kurumi wants him to call her plain ol’ Kurumi and order her to do something. Or else she’ll cry! So who is the master around here? Not wanting to cause a scene, he orders her to get some rice curry with cutlets. Out in town, they arrive at a popular curry house but why the heck are they cross-dressing? So that nobody could recognize them? But when they bump into a couple of ladies in trenchcoat, they flee. Nakahito feels they should return home. That’s an order. He gets reprimanded by Kamihito for disobeying his instructions to stay. Kurumi protects Nakahito and says if he wants somebody to take the punishment, she is willing to take it for her master. Also, seems the trenchcoat ladies have tailed them back to the shrine. At the military training grounds, the general and the professors are using a couple of Kongos to test out Saki’s strength. She surpasses all expectations and destroys them all with ease. General notes with Saki in hand, no enemies will stand in their way and will become the greatest world power. Great. Just what we need another megalomaniac. He thanks them both (Brandow attributing Saki’s activation solely to Amagi) and then asks about Saki’s obedience. Amagi mentions she has an in-built obedience circuits and cannot disobey. I guess this was just a question for the perverted general to ask if Saki could even do ‘that’. Without flinching, Amagi confirms she can as long as she gives the orders.

Episode 4
Kurumi is in a romantic lovey-dovey dream about Nakahito. She’s just hugging the blanket. Nakahito and his brother are up early doing their usual cleansing ritual at the waterfall. Kamihito is a pro so he emerges from the waterfall without being wet at all. They meet with Ayanokouji and he wants Nakahito to come with him to his secret lab in Izumo to find out the mystery of how he activated Kurumi (he still doesn’t believe that accidental fluke). Originally Kamihito was supposed to do it with his mystical magic but Nakahito managed to do so without the use of any spells. Ayanokouji notes that since he has awakened Kurumi, he is the only one who can control her. Meanwhile Amagi orders Saki to go defeat Kurumi. As Nakahito sweeps the grounds, the bullies confront him and want him to spit everything out. They think something big has happened seeing the military is occupying the decimated mansion. As they get rough and forcing him to tell, Kurumi in search of her master jumps in and pushes them away. She was about to teach them a lesson for picking on her master so Nakahito orders her to put let them go and that she shouldn’t be rough on people. I hope the bullies learn a lesson from now on. Still, Nakahito isn’t amused and wants to be left alone. Kurumi ponders if she has done anything wrong for Nakahito to hate her but she dismisses she was doing what’s best for him. Suddenly her heart beats and feels something strange coming. Saki arrives at the shrine looking for Kurumi. Showing her strength, she cracks the shrine pole with a single chop. Ayanokouji is surprised Saki is activated. When Kurumi shows up, Saki straightaway attacks her. She wants her to stop seeing she is wrecking Nakahito’s home in their power fight. Kurumi doesn’t fight back and only evades upon realizing something. Saki continues to pound her mercilessly.

Episode 5
The guys don’t understand why Kurumi refuses to fight back and continues to be Saki’s punching bag. A shrine pillar is about to fall on Nakahito. Kurumi quickly protects him and shoves it away. Nakahito learns that he ‘ordered’ her not to get rough on people, the reason she isn’t fighting back. This allows Saki to pin her and is about to strike her throat when she suddenly stop dead in her tracks and collapses.  Amagi makes her appearance and laments that Saki’s forced activation via electric shock didn’t work. Thus Saki’s awakening wasn’t a real one. Ayanokouji is shocked to hear it was Brandow’s idea. From the way Ayanokouji and Kamihito said things, Kurumi is happy that Saki is her little sister (at least to her understanding). Seeing she wants her activated, I guess there is only 1 way left. Yup. Nakahito must kiss her. After much pestering, he sums up his courage to give it a shot but was pushed away by Kurumi who changed her mind. Yeah, her master’s lips only belong to her. So how? Kurumi will do it herself. Serious. Once Kurumi kisses Saki, she activates, surprising everyone. So this method really works. Saki is also happy to learn Kurumi is her big sister. But she won’t listen to Amagi anymore (she wanted to examine her body). Nakahito notices Saki’s badly injured body and tells her that it is okay to get rough, depending on the situation. Do you think she understand that? Suddenly something crashes down on them. Ayanokouji is injured and unconscious. Seeing destroying Kurumi has failed, Brandow takes him away in his… UFO?

Episode 6
Brandow is talking to his employer about Kurumi and the Angel Heart Mark II. He is concerned about Kurumi and feels the need to retrieve her as soon as possible. Hey, there are lots of unactivated Steel Angels there. Amagi learns from the general that everything from the Angel Heart Mark II to the blueprints has been taken by Brandow. Looks like he is a spy from an enemy country but intelligence couldn’t determine his existence as a spy which means they are dealing with an unknown enemy manoeuvring in secret. I don’t believe this. The army making this kind of mistake? He can’t make any move because the Steel Angel Project is only by a top few high ranking people in the military. Rousing the army against an unseen national threat is not logic thus he can’t exercise his powers of command. Blaming Amagi for it all, he wants her to resign. But from the way the general puts it, it means that Amagi won’t be troubled by the system by acting independently if she quits the army. She gladly resigns and it seems the general has an ulterior motive. One of the Steel Angels taken is to his liking: Karinka. Kurumi and friendly Saki help rebuild the shrine. They also take the initiative to build a love nest. Oops, I mean a lovely little house nearby. Amagi sees Nakahito and asks him about his collaboration with Ayanokouji. It was the new life he sensed he was creating. Ayanokouji’s science utilizes the power of mysticism that Kamihito’s family has guarded tightly throughout the generations. By combining science and mysticism, a new life is born. She has a request. Wanting to know about the secret of Kurumi and Saki’s activation as well as Ayanokouji’s reason for being kidnapped, she wants Nakahito and the Steel Angels to follow her to Ayanokouji’s secret lab at Izumo. I guess there goes their time at the love nest, I mean lovely little house. Remember the couple of ladies that trailed Nakahito and Kurumi back to the shrine a few episodes ago? Seems Eiko Kichijoji and Yoshiko Koganei are spies working under the general to watch over and secretly aid the Steel Angels. The general really seems to take a liking for Karinka. He’s even carved a wood sculpture of her. Don’t lose her head… Kamihito is doing some fortune thingy and he saw something unpleasant. The next morning, he sees the rest off and is confident they’ll be fine since Nakahito has the guardian angels of science and mysticism.

Episode 7
Kurumi is thrilled of seeing Mt Fuji during the train ride. Upon arriving at the destination, Nakahito is in need to see a doctor because he ate something disagreeable. Saki is tasked to bring their luggage to their inn alone. So much for that wonderful plan to be with Kurumi. I guess it doesn’t hurt if she just fantasizes herself doing little naughty stuff in bed with Kurumi. Kurumi is against the doctor examining Nakahito’s body. Nobody but her can touch his naked body! Till Nakahito says she must listen to what doctors say. Objection overruled! Koganei and Kichijoji are spying outside and it seems Koganei may have a thing for Nakahito because she is noting how cute his naked body is!!! (On a side note, Kichijoji has a thing for Amagi…). The doctor doesn’t find anything threatening with Nakahito and all he needs is to rest. As she goes back to her room to take some prescribed medicine, an imposter knocks her out. She then returns to the rest to have them take a litmus test with a reason there is food poisoning going around. Nakahito and Amagi’s litmus turn out okay but Kurumi’s wasn’t. The imposter needs to further examine her and ushers her into the room where she has Kurumi strip everything. Yes, everything. Soon, Amagi and Nakahito collapse. With some weird radar scanner, it seems the imposter has scanned and confirmed Kurumi’s Angel Heart Mark II. Because Amagi and co took too long, worried Saki made her way to the clinic and to her shock, sees Amagi and Nakahito out cold. The imposter is alarmed that she hasn’t examined Kurumi finished yet and has no choice but to flee via the window. It is revealed she is Steel Angel Kaori, created by Kageyoshi Kirimoto from Saitama. In the aftermath, Saki and Kurumi have that wonderful hotspring bonding-cum-skinship. At least that’s what Saki is dreaming for but to her dismay, Kurumi is already having her fun with Nakahito in the hotspring. Yeah, beaten again.

Episode 8
Amagi wakes up from a nightmare of being separated with Ayanokouji. Seems it has been days that Amagi and co have been stuck in town because a boulder has crashed onto the rail tracks. The army is having a tough time moving it and looks like they’ll be staying for a while. Amagi asks around for other modes of transport but none are able to do so. Kurumi comes up with an idea that she and Saki should go push the boulder away but Amagi doesn’t want them to do so because it will risk their secret being exposed as the boulder is currently at the centre of attraction of the public. So what does Kurumi understand from all that? She’ll put up a concert and be loved by everyone? No, no, no! That it will be okay if they do it without everyone seeing? Still, Amagi forbids them to leave this room. Will they listen to her orders? Later Kurumi tries to strip Nakahito into going to the hot bath with him. They accidentally drop the basket with Amagi’s belongings. Nakahito sees a locket containing Ayanokouji’s picture. Then as Amagi goes to the dining hall, he only sees Nakahito and fears the Steel Angels may have went to the site alone but Nakahito assures her they are taking their baths. Isn’t it awfully long? Yeah, they love their baths. Nakahito apologizes about seeing her locket and asks the kind of person Ayanokouji is like. Well, let’s just say he’s a good guy, strong sense of justice and it’s safe to assume that Amagi likes him. The army is still trying to pull the boulder with their tanks but it isn’t budging. Seriously, can’t they just blast it? Maybe ammos cost a lot then? But it seems Kurumi and Saki are at the scene as they secretly push the boulder away. The army is relieved but another Steel Angel, Tsunami (created by Kaori Kubo of Chiba) notes how Kurumi and Saki easily moved it since it was controlled by gravity. Kurumi and Saki return and feign they have finished their bath but Kurumi’s slip of her tongue that they can move on since the boulder is moved gave her away. Hey, look at her dirty boots. Yeah, I guess Nakahito was equally guilty in giving them orders to do so. No wonder he looked so nervous. However to Amagi’s relief, she hears the people praising the army for pushing the boulder away.

Episode 9
Kaori and Tsunami are reporting to another Steel Angel, Kaga about Kurumi’s powers that exceed all expectations. They think it’s because of the mystic power and her absolute master Nakahito. Amagi and co prepare to leave for the next town via train. Nakahito spots an old lady rushing to get on board so he has Kurumi carry her before the train departs. The old lady is grateful. In the next town, Kurumi sees a poster of a fireworks festival tonight and starts fantasizing her lovey-dovey fantasy with Nakahito. However Amagi notes they have to leave early next morning much to Kurumi’s dismay. All is not lost when Nakahito mentions they can watch the fireworks from their inn. So Kurumi rushes everyone to the inn but leaving poor Saki behind. While Nakahito and Kurumi go watch the fireworks on the rooftop, Amagi and Saki to the packing. Next door, Koganei and Kichijoji are eavesdropping but as usual, they get their usual fetish fantasies in the way. Kichijoji teases Koganei by reading out loud her steamy doujin fantasy with Nakahito!!! Extreme!!! Kurumi and Nakahito could’ve kissed if not for the fireworks distraction. What? Just the fireworks? No other nosy people? Nakahito recounts the events when he met Kurumi and thinks he finally understood his role with her. Happy Kurumi hugs him. As Kurumi goes off to get drinks, Kaga kidnaps Nakahito. Kurumi returns not only to find her master missing but a voice telling her she has her master. If she wants to find him, she must come to where this voice originates. Kurumi starts jumping from roof to roof across town in search for him (amazingly, nobody saw her. Maybe it’s too dark). Saki can also sense something wrong.

Episode 10
Kurumi reaches the rocky cliffs. Kaga throws Nakahito to her and reveals their true goal was to get her. Meanwhile Saki guides Amagi with her instincts to where Kurumi is with Koganei and Kichijoji close behind. Kaga wants Kurumi to come with them but of course she’s not going anywhere without her master. Seeing she has chosen this path, they plan to destroy her. Kurumi doesn’t fight back and evades their attacks (though she still gets beaten up). She doesn’t want to fight her same kind. Kaga blames Kurumi for having Angel Heart Mark II but she herself doesn’t know what it is. They think she’s playing dumb and for her to have forgotten her true role as a Steel Angel is unforgiveable. Seeing her as a threat, they are going to destroy her for good when Saki saves out of harm’s way. The trio start combining their moves to stir a huge whirlwind. Nakahito gets caught in it and injures his leg. Kurumi becomes so upset that she fires a powerful red projection right out of her fist to even dispel the hurricane! Woah! Kaga and co could barely stand. They still want to finish Kurumi off but their master tells them to back off for now. Saki wonders about the Angel Heart so Amagi thinks it must have something to do with the people who stole it from the military facility. Kurumi is stunned over what just happened. Koganei and Kichijoji just witnessed something incredible and feel they will understand the reason the general sent them on this mission. Back at the inn, Nakahito wishes to be left alone. He ponders about his uselessness and is Kamihito was around, he could’ve used his mystic powers to help Kurumi. Kaga and co report their failure to Dr Walski but he has them rest their bodies. Noting the instant power Kurumi exhibited that surpassed everything previously measured, he wants to hasten the awakening of Karinka.

Episode 11
Walski’s men are putting in the data retrieved from the battle with Kurumi into Karinka. He is confident she can counter Angel Heart Mark II because she is equipped with 2 Angel hearts. Kurumi is having her usual morning daydreaming fantasies. Saki thought of getting in part of the action but was punched instead. Yeah, Kurumi’s daydream suddenly turns into one beating up those who hurt her master. Saki goes to wash herself up and sees Nakahito sitting by the river himself. They talk about the recent events. Kurumi is finally awakened from her pig slumber by Amagi who is in search of Nakahito. As Kurumi searches for him, she sees them together, what more holding hands (actually Saki prevented Nakahito from slipping down). Her jealousy kicks in and she doesn’t even believe either words that it’s a misunderstanding. She takes Nakahito away for breakfast and the atmosphere gets awkward. Each time Saki tries to do something for Nakahito, Kurumi butts in to do it herself. Nakahito tells her to cut it out and this breaks her out. Calling her master an idiot, she goes out of the room. Amagi later talks to sulking Kurumi about the thing called jealousy and the best cure for it is to quickly go apologize openly and honestly. Kurumi took her advice and comes rushing into the room. She didn’t know she bumped Nakahito towards Saki so from her view, it looks like the duo kissed! In actual fact, it did not meet but very close. I guess that means no apology, eh? First the hand, now the lips. Stupid master!!! Kurumi really sulks for good, not talking to them during the meal. Later Saki summons her courage to go bath with Kurumi and comes clean there is nothing going on between her and Nakahito because she actually loves Kurumi. Kurumi also loves her because she is her one and only little sister. Just like that, their relationship is mended. Saki is so happy that she couldn’t sleep that night and thinks of bringing back cinnamon cookies so that Kurumi would be happy first thing in the morning. Seriously, the stores are open at this hour? As she runs along, Karinka ambushes her. She is disappointed her big sister is this weak.

Episode 12
Cheeky Karinka is faster and stronger so Saki has no chance to counter attack and gets beaten to a pulp. If you’re wondering why she still beats up Saki even when the sun has risen, it’s part of her plan to lure Kurumi out to save her so she can destroy them both at once. Kurumi and co see a note from Saki saying she’ll return by morning. She hasn’t and Kurumi has this bad feeling something may have happened. Figuring out Saki may have head to Kyoto to get cinnamon cookies, the gang take a train there. That far? And Saki was running there all night so it beats me how she would reach back by morning. Brandow contacts Karinka about completing her mission to eliminate Kurumi. Being the rebellious kind, she intends to do so but they didn’t say when. Since she has just awoken, she wants to go sightseeing. Brandow orders her to finish Kurumi now and not let her guard down but she doesn’t listen because she thinks she is strong. See how she crucified Saki on to a wooden pole? Saki should’ve ‘slept’ longer because this only means Karinka has time to ‘play’ with her boobs. Perhaps there’s a reason why they didn’t make her chest this big. What am I thinking? Upon arrival, Kurumi uses her sisterly instincts to guide the gang to a shrine. She is appalled to see Saki in a mess and won’t forgive this Karinka for it. She refuses to acknowledge her as her little sister but Karinka blames Kurumi for this happening to Saki because she should’ve arrived earlier. Amagi recognizes Karinka from the blueprint in Ayanokouji’s lab and wonders who made her from that diagram. Cocky Karinka is confident she is the strongest Steel Angel because she has 2 Angel Hearts but Kurumi is sure she will avenge Saki.

Episode 13
The big battle begins. Though Kurumi gets pounded, she can still match Karinka’s strength and speed. Karinka multiplies herself to up the challenge but Kurumi can still stand her ground. Kurumi just wants Karinka to apologize and she’ll forgive her but that rebellious girl isn’t going to do what she’s being told. Hey, she couldn’t even obey her master, right? Nakahito tries hard to invoke his mystic powers to give Kurumi some wind wall barrier but I guess he was too slow and Kurumi got owned and her Angel Heart went offline. Karinka is about to harvest her Angel Heart when it restarts again. But this isn’t the Kurumi we know. She is like an evil robot with no emotions. Showing her fearsome powers, she turns the temple into Swiss cheese with her blast! It’s amazing she blast everywhere except Karinka. Warning shots? Karinka got so scared that she can’t move. Now isn’t a good time to talk. Kurumi is really going to kill her. Nakahito thought he is seeing things but it is true that there are black angelic wings sprouting from Kurumi’s back. Probably it took him a while to realize what’s happening too because Karinka could’ve been scrapped metal if he hadn’t shout out for Kurumi to stop. In an instant, she returns to normal and apologizes for what she has done. Thinking it is the same as with Saki, she is going to kiss Karinka. However she wakes up before their lips touch. No lesbian scenes. Karinka runs away. Koganei and Kichijoji are stunned at what they saw and will need to report back to the general. Meanwhile in Walski’s flying fortress, Brandow informs Karinka is in hiding and could not be contacted. Walski thinks the effect of having 2 Angel Hearts has caused the obedience circuits to malfunction. Seeing desperate times comes desperate measures, he is going to use ‘that’ plan.

Episode 14
Karinka is pouting like mad but being the sore loser she is, she is going to find out Kurumi’s weakness and beat the crap out of her. Meanwhile Amagi and a bunch of scientist prepare to repair Saki. In the mean time, Nakahito will have to stay with Kurumi. Oh yeah. Big chance to make a love nest. However it is not what Kurumi wanted because the place they are staying are stationed with guards. She wants to go on a date and throws a tantrum when Nakahito refuses. Not even his orders work. Kurumi then forces him to come along with her. See, no matter how many guards you put, she can just evade them all by jumping past them. Koganei and Kichijoji are tailing close but they spot a girl (Karinka in a very good disguise) zooming past them. How can a girl on a bicycle go faster than their sidecar? Kurumi and Nakahito try out the many rides at the amusement park. Karinka acts as the park’s staff and pretends to take a survey of where she gets her energy. Koganei and Kichijoji sense something amiss that she wants to find out about the Steel Angel and plan to intercept. Kichijoji uses a sticky tape on a rod to fish away the paper so the rest thought it was the wind. Karinka isn’t giving up and this time comes back with more forms and on a wooden board. Before Kurumi can write, Koganei throws a card to cut off the tip of the pencil. Next time, eh? Yeah, Karinka returns with a full booth and a pen. Now nothing can stop her. She even offers all-she-can drink lamune. The detectives hide in a nearby booth and shoot a sticky substance on the pen. Kurumi can’t write so Karinka tries to take it off. It is so sticky that it tore of the paper and in her haste, the lamune bottles got smashed. Better luck next time. Karinka senses something amiss coming from the nearby booth and attacks. Her disguise comes off but seeing nobody is in, she goes after Kurumi. The detectives are hiding on the ceiling and realize she is the Steel Angel Kurumi battled the other day. Kurumi and Nakahito continue their date. She is proud nobody can interfere with their love time but feels bad for that hard working staff for working. Well, Karinka isn’t giving up yet… Yeah, hard working alright.

Episode 15
Koganei and Kichijoji report to the general over what they saw. He orders them to take a picture of Karinka. I guess it’s because he really likes her. Meanwhile the repair on Saki is making headway progress but Amagi is concerned when Nakahito told her about Kurumi sprouting black wings. Kurumi and Nakahito are on their way to the Milk Hall to work part time to help cover for travel expenses. Karinka in yet another good disguise (school girl uniform) is at it again but Kurumi starts staring at her? Could it be her identity has been found out? Yes. Kurumi thinks Karinka loves playing disguises and recognizes those knees anywhere! WTF?! As part of Karinka’s plan, she pretends to be goody-goody giving reasons she has become a good girl after her kiss. Kurumi starts smothering her with her love but Nakahito doesn’t trust her. But with Kurumi’s plea, Nakahito eventually relents. The trio start working as waiter and waitresses in the Milk Hall. Karinka observes klutzy Kurumi getting into all sorts of trouble while poor Nakahito either bears the brunt or helps her out in a fix. She is pissed she could lose to a dummy like her. When the bar master tells her to get back to work, Karinka becomes klutzy herself and is disheartened she has been categorized the same as her idiot sister. Nakahito helps her out and says to do their best because he wants to believe in her. Karinka starts blushing at his straight looks. Because she can’t take anymore of Kurumi’s silliness, she brings her to the rooftop and asks her straight but politely (she’s getting goosebumps doing this). Kurumi couldn’t answer (because she doesn’t know) so Karinka becomes pissed and leave. That night Nakahito asks Kurumi’s rendezvous with Karinka at the rooftop so Kurumi lets him know what she asked. After thinking a long time, Kurumi realizes why she is strong. She owes it all to his kiss. The kiss which started everything and made her powers a miracle. Eavesdropping Karinka concludes she can get strong by kissing Nakahito and targets his lips.

Episode 16
Saki is fully recovered and Kurumi receives her with lots of love. Karinka dreams big of stealing Nakahito’s lips and beating Kurumi up. Yeah, dream on. As Kurumi and co board the train, Karinka comes running to Saki to apologize for what she did (she’s a bloody good actor). Saki of course forgives her. As the train moves, Karinka plots her way to kiss Nakahito. The detectives are watching nearby and a certain shotacon can tell that Karinka’s target is Nakahito. I’m sure we can tell why she’s pretty concerned for Nakahito, right? She can predict the moves that Karinka will make! First, Karinka pretends to get a closer look of the ocean view but as she is about to kiss, Kurumi butts in so she kisses her cheek instead (to Saki’s horror). Kurumi thinks she loves her that much and returns with another peck on her cheek (also to Saki’s horror). Next, Karinka feigns dust-in-her-eye move and wants Nakahito to get it out. When her lips are getting close, Saki slams her fist into her cheek. Conveniently, there was a mosquito. But it still hurts. Lastly, Karinka purposely spills her water on Nakahito’s clothes and wants to take responsibility. She ushers him to the back of the train. Saki wants Kurumi let Karinka to handle it. However Saki too has an ulterior motive. If Karinka hits off with Nakahito, then Kurumi will be all hers. At the back of the train, Karinka tries to forcefully strip him. The bumpy train movements of course had them slip and their lips met. Too late Koganei. His lips are stolen. Though we don’t see any improvements, Karinka feels stronger. Hmm… Must be her mind. At the next stop, Karinka is going to punch Kurumi but she stops it with her fist. Karinka realizes she didn’t get stronger and remembers Walski’s words and comes to a conclusion the kiss only works on Kurumi’s Angel Heart Mark II. She is about to sink into depression when Nakahito apologizes to her for his carelessness. He has observed her and that she is trying her best to be a nice girl (her acting all this while must be bloody good). He hopes that can start over and be friends. Karinka starts blushing and shakes his hands. From now on, she couldn’t care less about Kurumi. As the train ride resumes, Karinka keeps staring at Nakahito and even sitting up close to him. Kurumi didn’t like what she’s doing but she claims she’s just a kid and doesn’t understand. Saki agrees with Karinka and Amagi reminds Kurumi to act like a big sister. I guess you can say in this way, Karinka has beaten Kurumi, eh?

Episode 17
The gang arrive at Izumo. But they’ve got a new problem. Kurumi and Karinka fighting over Nakahito. Amagi reminds them about their important mission of finding clues to help them uncover Ayanokouji’s kidnapping. I think they prefer the petty fight. Boy, it’s going to be hard. Yeah, solve the problem by just putting Saki in between them. She’s like a ‘rock’ between those 2 squabbling ladies. Amagi asks around but nobody knows anything. While eating at a ramen store, they are visited by a lady named Nadeshiko. She recognizes the Steel Angels and proceeds to bring all of them to Ayanokouji’s secret lab underneath a temple shrine. Nadeshiko reveals she is a Steel Angel as well and though she was built earlier than the trio, she was supposed to watch them awaken in this lab. But that didn’t happen. Noting that Ayanokouji has been kidnapped, she has been guarding this place ever since by his orders. She feels that people from the Academy are the culprits behind his kidnapping. Who? A group of scientists from the future to change mankind’s history. Ayanokouji is one of them. Now that explains why there are such high technology inventions in this era. However Ayanokouji did not agree with their way of using Angel Heart and split. He wanted the power of Angel Heart Mark II to protect the entire world. For that, he needed a powerful mystic. She thinks Nakahito is the person Ayanokouji was seeking as a mystic is the only one who can control Steel Angels loaded with Angel Heart Mark II. Since Kurumi is the only one here with Angel Heart Mark II, the other one is with the Academy. Anyhow, the fate of humanity depends on it! Kurumi didn’t understand all that complicating hullaballoo stuff. What she understood was her love and her master’s will save the world! Karinka butts in to tell her they have kissed but Kurumi doesn’t believe. She dares him to ask Nakahito himself. Which she did. Her fears come true upon seeing his reaction. So she asks him the all important question: Which does he love more? Of course he can’t really answer that, right? Kurumi narrows down the question. Narrow it down? How? “Do you love Kurumi?”. Now that is even tougher! Instead of giving the simple and certain ‘yes’, he ‘expanded’ it by telling her he feels better when she’s around. Enough for Kurumi to be happy. But Nakahito wants to be left alone for now because there are important things he needs to think about. Like about his powers and burden to save the world. Yeah, humanity’s fate is resting on the shoulders of this little kid. As he ponders alone at the beach, he sees a strange kid, Mikhail walking towards him. Though he can walk on water, but he’s no Jesus Christ. He pleads for Nakahito’s help to save him but I guess Nakahito got hypnotized and follows him. Well, the good thing about Kurumi is about her annoyance of wanting to be with Nakahito every time. So when he’s not around, she senses something amiss.

Episode 18
Kurumi and the rest search for Nakahito but couldn’t find him. Kurumi blames herself for causing this to happen. Nadeshiko believes he may have been kidnapped by the Academy seeing she saw something in the sky but wasn’t a shooting star. Karinka seems to know where that place is. Nakahito wakes up inside Academy’s base with Mikhail next to him. The latter wants his help to stop Kurumi (because she listens to her master) so that they can take out her Angel Heart Mark II and store it elsewhere. He explains an Angel Heart has the power of angels sealed within it, the reason Steel Angels aren’t just mechanical dolls. However Ayanokouji wasn’t satisfied with that and built and even more powerful Angel Heart Mark II. Since he was relying on a power they were never meant to touch, there is something else within that Heart too. It also contains the power of demons. Remember Kurumi sprouting black wings? Yeah, that. Nakahito doesn’t believe that demon crap but Mikhail warns if Kurumi transforms into that, there will be no turning back and the world will be destroyed. Still, Nakahito won’t do something that results in Kurumi’s death. Mikhail realizes he loves Kurumi but tries to convince him Steel Angels don’t need love. They are things. Nakahito begs to differ because he has seen different emotions coming from Kurumi. Nevertheless Mikhail notes it is a thing trying to pretend to be a human. Since he loves her that much, it is all the more reason why he must stop Angel Heart Mark II with his own hands. Is he willing to watch Kurumi turn into a demon? Mikhail leaves to give him more time to think. Amagi reports to the general about Nakahito’s kidnapping and soon, Koganei and Kichijoji formally introduce themselves to Amagi and the Steel Angels. Upon the general’s orders, they are to escort them to the military plane where they’ll be heading towards Academy’s base. Nadeshiko will stay behind and wait for Ayanokouji’s return. Nakahito thinks really hard and all the times he spent with Kurumi. There is no way she is a demon with that smile so innocent. Well, they say still waters deep.

Episode 19
The heroines arrive at the flying fortress of the Academy. The Steel Angels and Amagi dive down. Don’t they need parachutes? I know they’ll survive the fall but won’t that be a hard thud? Anyway Karinka leads them through the maze since she is familiar with the place. Then they see Nakahito. Kurumi and Karinka rush to greet him without thinking. Turns out to be a hologram and this is a trap to separate them all. Amagi meets Brandow who brings her to Walski so she can hear herself about the truth. Walski starts explaining that in the future, everyone was living in peace till an unknown and powerful enemy whom they refer to as Demonkind attacked and destroyed the peace. Seeing normal weapons had no effect, they merged science and mysticism to create Steel Angels and Angel Heart. However the Demonkind’s power was overwhelming and Angel Heart didn’t exhibit its full potential power. Something was missing. It was the power of a superior skilled mystic needed to draw out Angel Heart’s true potential. But in the future, mysticism was on the verge of extinction and even so, they are inferior. That’s why they return to the past to impart that knowledge to the future. However Ayanokouji objected to that idea because he felt it wouldn’t guarantee them in defeating Demonkind. He believed in making a more powerful Angel Heart and created Angel Heart Mark II by sealing Demonkind’s powers within it along with the power of angels. Walski and the rest felt it was too dangerous to be used as a weapon as they do not know if they could control its power. Amagi couldn’t believe Ayanokouji would create something so dangerous for mankind. Walski says only Nakahito is the only one who can stop Kurumi. He wants Amagi to help convince Nakahito to stop her before she turns into a demon. Brandow brings Amagi to unconscious Ayanokouji (he has been in this state ever since) and leaves them for a while. Meanwhile trapped Kurumi’s persistence pays off because she keeps banging the unbreakable wall till it breaks. Frantically finding and calling out to her master, she beats up all other Steel Angels that get in her way. She comes into Tsunami and co and she is adamant on going to her master’s side. Mikhail visits Nakahito to get his answer. His reply? He has faith in Kurumi. Since they have no time, Mikhail hypnotizes Nakahito and kisses him! OMG! Yaoi scene. But… Mikhail transforms into her true Steel Angel form.

Episode 20
Kurumi blasts the trio away with her super powers. She continues her search when she runs into Mikhail who has both Angel Heart and Angel Heart Mark II. She traps Kurumi in a shrinking energy barrier. But Kurumi’s power of love for her master has her bust out in no time. Kurumi continues to throw futile punches at Mikhail. In a swing, Mikhail slams Kurumi stuck to the wall. She reminds her that Steel Angels are created for humans and must never put them in danger. As she is about to retrieve her Heart, Kurumi deflects her hand. She didn’t see that coming? Anyway the deflected blast knocked out a tower and caused the surrounding areas to explode!!! Ayanokouji finally wakes up as Amagi explains everything. They go to confront Walski and he wants them to stop the Steel Angels from fighting each other. Ayanokouji is shocked to hear Walski created a Super Steel Angel by combining 2 different Angel Hearts to create Mikhail. Though Walski was against it, it is the only way to stop Kurumi before her demon powers awaken. Ayanokouji rubbishes that thought so Walski wants him to shut Kurumi down with his own hands. However Ayanokouji says Kurumi has no shutdown system. He adds Steel Angels aren’t just mechanical dolls and if he pits Steel Angels against each other since they are not their true enemies, pitting 2 angel elements against each other will yield unknown results. Saki and Karinka cooperate to get themselves out. Then they hear Nakahito’s cries and bust him out of the room. They go search for Kurumi and see her fighting with Mikhail. They can’t interfere because they know they are no match. So just watch and pray. Kurumi wonders why they must fight. Mikhail replies she is something that must not exist. Kurumi isn’t going to lose so she starts activating her power.

Episode 21
Kurumi is blasted off Academy and into the forests below. Mikhail fires a powerful shot to make sure she’s dead. Well, a big part of the forest got destroyed in the process. She goes down to confirm but Kurumi surprises everyone watching by standing back up. It is then Kurumi’s inner power activates and she loses her senses. Faint outlines of the black wings can be seen. Mikhail attacks again but it doesn’t work. Kurumi goes on the offensive but each time she gets hit by Mikhail, she gets back up like the hit was nothing. It’s like she’s an emotionless and heartless killing machine. Mikhail gets a taste of pain when Kurumi easily throws a tree log right into her! The power fight continues and if this goes on, the entire forest would be wiped out! I’m serious. Mikhail’s combat abilities reach her maximum. Kurumi deals the final blow with an enormous power blast. So powerful that the only thing Mikhail can do is shout her name. Nakahito wants Saki and Karinka to take him down to stop them because he could tell Kurumi doesn’t want to fight and that there was sadness in Mikhail’s eyes. When they arrive at ground zero, Kurumi is the only one left standing and this time her black wings are completely materialized. Looks like turning into a demon is the ultimate price she paid.

Episode 22
Kurumi doesn’t recognize them and fires away. Even if Saki and Karinka protected Nakahito, he still got wounded. At least a bloodied shoulder. Walski orders using some gravitational force to suppress Kurumi’s movement. It didn’t work because Kurumi unleashes her Barrier Globe to protect herself and negate the gravitation force. Then she targets the Academy by firing a beam. It’s like slicing through butter with a hot knife! Yeah, looks like a mini Death Star. A boulder is about to crash on Nakahito and the Steel Angels but thanks to Kamihito’s mysticism, they didn’t become pancakes. Kamihito is here because of the dreaded premonition he saw. The Academy crashes hard on the ground and though the base is heavily damaged, there is still power for certain functions and everyone is safe. They just got a bad landing. Walski and Ayanokouji blame each other that this happen. Ayanokouji explains that Steel Angels have souls just like humans. By sealing Demonkind powers, the power of Angel Heart can be increased. Because Walski made them fight, the angel element that governs Angel Heart rejected them and thus Demonkind took over. Now Kurumi is governed by Demonkind and is a Chaos Angel. Nakahito gets treated in the base while everyone else discuss what to do before Kurumi fully regenerates. That will be in 2 hours time. Now she’s sleeping like a baby in her Barrier Globe. Yeah, all hell will break lose once time is up. The only way left as Walski thinks is to focus all the energy Academy has in annihilating Kurumi’s existence, even if it destroys Academy itself. Saki protests against the method because she believes Kurumi can return to her normal self. But Ayanokouji is not saying anything. But another emergency is creeping in. The Barrier Globe is rapidly expanding and so is the Demonkind wave reading.

Episode 23
Kurumi fires another black beam at the grounded Academy. This time damaging the crucial power reactor that is needed to annihilate Kurumi. As Brandow states, attempts to redirect and bypass power source are futile because this is as much the base can take. Repairs will take 3 hours, something they don’t have the luxury of waiting since Kurumi will be fully recharged in an hour’s time. Kamihito volunteers to slow down Barrier Globe so he starts chanting to keep it from growing. Walski is at a loss of what to do. Kaga comes in and has grasped the situation. She and her Steel Angels will offer to convert their energy into the power needed to compensate the power shortage and even pass the 100% output mark. Though it may cost them their lives, she reminds them that Steel Angels’ duty to protect mankind. If they can use their lives to accomplish this, they will be proud to do so. Walski has no choice but to agree with them. Karinka and Saki go see Nakahito and hope to cheer him up. However that kid still blames himself over Kurumi’s transformation so much so Karinka had to tell him off that she likes him and did everything for him even though she knew he did all he could for Kurumi. She won’t forgive him if he gives up on Kurumi. She won’t like him like this. Now it’s her turn to get emotional. What good would it do if there are 2 of them crying? Well, Saki the ever kind comforting soul is always there when you need a shoulder to cry on. The sun is setting and Kamihito must be one awesome dude fully concentrating in his chanting. However he must be at his limit since Barrier Globe is expanding. Finally he breaks. I guess he is only human. Nakahito comes to the bridge to learn what is happening. All the more to hear from Ayanokouji that their only choice left is to annihilate Kurumi. Yeah, he’s not going to let that happen. Ever. Saki and Karinka join the other Steel Angels in lending their energy while the Chaos Angel revitalizes.

Episode 24
Well, the mini Death Star is much bigger now. But deep down inside Kurumi’s consciousness, she’s calling for her master and feeling very cold. All the Steel Angels lose their life giving their energy to the reactor. It is only a matter of seconds before the final blast will be fired. Nakahito rushes out towards Kurumi but he was stopped by Kamihito. Big brother had to slap him to make him realize that he can’t do anything. Not that he is being negative but really, what can he do? As they head into the safety of the base, Nakahito heard Kurumi calling him. He gives Kamihito the slip and rushes back out. Everyone can’t stop the impending shot because if they do, everything will be wasted. Nakahito gets absorbed into Globe Barrier and meets Kurumi. He hugs her as he whispers that no matter how much she changes, Kurumi is Kurumi. That was enough to awaken and return Kurumi to her normal state. WHAT???!!! IT WAS THAT EASY???!!! But too late. The final powerful blast is fired. This might be even bigger than the nuclear bomb dropped on Hiroshima. But it boggles me it didn’t destroy the nearby mountain. Next scene we know, Kurumi kisses Nakahito and awakens him. Reverse, eh? Another mind boggling thing is that, assuming if they were caught in the blast, how come only their clothes got zapped. Even if the Barrier Globe protected them, how the heck did they lose their clothes? Whatever. Anyway Nakahito confesses he loves Kurumi and they both kiss again. This time, their kiss emits a powerful light. So powerful that it returns all the energy to the other Steel Angels, reviving them (including Mikhail). Wouldn’t want this to end on a bittersweet note, don’t we? Everyone is surprised at the turn of events (probably watching the duo kiss too) and no Demonkind presence is detected within Kurumi. Ayanokouji realizes their mistake. They have overlooked something very important. It isn’t the mystical powers or the strengthening of Angel Heart that matters. The most important thing to a Steel Angel is the relationship of trust between herself and the mystic. To put it in another way, it’s the power of love. Yeah, love conquers all. Koganei and Kichijoji return with the military reinforcements but it’s all for nothing since it has been settled. But it’s good, right? Believe me, I don’t think all those Kongos would even have a chance against evil Kurumi (they fail badly against Saki, remember?). Nakahito and Kurumi see the first star in the sky. He believes if one sees it, they’ll be guaranteed to be happy. But Kurumi doesn’t believe it because she has been happy for a long time.

Steel Angel Kurumi Encore

I thought this was going to be a summary recap because of the name in its title, Encore. You know, as in, do it once more all over from the top. But instead of boring us with 4 OVA episodes that summarize what happened in the TV series, Steel Angel Kurumi Encore is in fact an extension of the said series with four additional episodes that takes place in the aftermath where the TV series ended. The plot is nothing serious and feels like fun and fillers. So I guess Encore is like, fans couldn’t get enough of the Steel Angels and want more. I think I’ll stick with that.

Episode 1
Amagi talks to the general about Ayanokouji who is trying to rebuild Academy at a ramen stall where Saki and Karinka are working at so that they won’t ‘get in the way’ of Kurumi and Nakahito as who knows what those 2 are doing back at the shrine. Suddenly a movie agent from Shochikubai Movie Company is taken aback by Saki’s beauty and wants her to become an actress! At first Saki was reluctant but seeing how excited Kurumi and Kamihito were, she decides to give a try. Saki gets new experience being an actress. Sometimes she fouls up but she carries on. But she also likes her new job because she gets to be physically closer to Kurumi (she acts out scenes for her during the bath). Saki soon becomes famous and has her own fans. One day, the director lets Saki in on the good news that she’ll have the chance to act in Hollywood for over a year. However this means she won’t be returning to Japan for that period though he assures her this is for her future and will leave after the end of their current movie project. Saki contemplates of quitting acting because she can’t see her beloved sister anymore. Ultimately it is up to her to make the decision. One night she sees Kurumi sleeping with Nakahito and hears her talk in her sleep that her master is the only one for her. It’s decided. Saki leaves onboard the liner as her sisters and Nakahito wish her goodbye. It might get lonely but it’s for the best. But for Kurumi, she’s got Nakahito. As the liner leaves, Saki sees Kurumi crying and then suddenly jumping into the water! Saki also jumps down into the ocean and swims up to Kurumi. She feels happier by her side. Well, what a wasted chance because she soon learns Kurumi had dust in her eyes and jumped into the ocean to wash it off. WTF?! But Kurumi notes that she too is happy that she didn’t go because she is happier with her by her side. Yeah. It’s short but welcome back.

Episode 2
Karinka isn’t happy about Kurumi and Nakahito’s usual morning ruckus. She then receives a love letter wanting to meet at a certain place and she can identify him with a rose in his pocket. Kurumi also finds out about Karinka’s date and is happy for her. Next day, Karinka isn’t pleased that Kurumi rushed her so much so she is 30 minutes earlier than her appointed time. Worse, she knows her sister and Nakahito are spying on her. Why are they cross-dressed again? This time they brought Saki along and I know she has to disguise herself because she is famous. But disguised as a thief?! It’s amazing nobody reported her. Then the mysterious date shows up… Kamihito?! Karinka quickly takes him away while the ‘stalkers’ follow. Later Karinka finds out Kamihito didn’t write the letter and it was just a coincidence he is wearing a rose in his pocket that the florist gave. But Kurumi and co see them as a lovely couple and start confusing themselves if they marry, would Kamihito be their older or little brother-in-law? Kamihito thought she should return to her waiting place but Karinka wants him to hang out with her for the rest of the day. Simply because it’s more fun to see those ‘stalkers’ panicking. So whether it’s riding a tram, at the movies, the zoo or the department store, Kurumi is like the idiot and feels like she’s on a date with Nakahito. Karinka’s feelings get confused when Kamihito praises her and even thinks she could have had a better time with the mysterious date. But she realizes she is not ready to fall in love yet. Kamihito takes it as she is still attached to Nakahito and it’s okay not to give up because a person’s feelings can’t easily change. She should be herself and cherish how she feels at this moment. I guess this means, Karinka isn’t giving up on Nakahito because the rivalry to wash his back with Kurumi continues. And the real mysterious date turns out to be… The general! He’s still waiting there! But it’s already late. He isn’t giving up yet so tomorrow he will send her another letter!

Episode 3
Kurumi is bugging Nakahito to kiss her like how he first did when they are being visited by Nadeshiko. But she’s only here for a quick visit as she has to return to Ayanokouji’s place. Kamihito notes how Nadeshiko is the epitome of an ideal Japanese woman even if she’s a Steel Angel. Since Nakahito also agrees, this worries Kurumi. She decides to be one and thinks really hard. Think, think, think and think. Nothing. So much so Saki discreetly helps her out by giving her a book on it. I’m not sure if Kurumi can understand those hard words. Oh well, never give up. Next morning, Nakahito is surprised that Kurumi has turned into an elegant and polite traditional Japanese woman. She excels in cooking, flower arrangement and even sewing. Even if she gets praised, she has to hold back her squeal and maintain her proper manners. Plus, it’s tiring to uphold the traditional way. Nakahito wonders if she is pushing too hard since she looks exhausted but she assures him everything is okay. But true enough, she collapses while cooking. When she wakes up, Nakahito has heard everything from Saki and tells her to just be herself. She is worried about not becoming his ideal woman so Nakahito relates when Nadeshiko was here, he was impressed with her ways. However she notes that he and Kurumi had something that others don’t no matter how much one practices: Feelings. It is important how they feel and care for each other. That’s why they should both be themselves and take it slow, walking on the same path. Thus Nakahito likes the way Kurumi is and pecks her on her forehead. I guess this will do. Happy Kurumi returns back to her genki self and hugs him.

Episode 4
All the Steel Angels rebuilding Academy heard this rumour that whoever kisses Nakahito will be the strongest Steel Angel. They confront Nakahito and Kurumi at the shrine wanting that kid to be their master. It’ll be over in just seconds. Like he can do that. Like she’ll allow that. Kamihito offers to be their master but they ignore him. Nadeshiko returns seeing she has heard the rumour. Seeing both sides aren’t going to back off, Nadeshiko suggests a competition in which the last one standing will be Nakahito’s master. The first round is a true or false question relating to Nakahito. Get a wrong answer and you’re disqualified. Only 5 will get to advance. Though Nadeshiko and Saki are the judges, at this point a mysterious masked Steel Angel, Yaoi makes her debut. Who? Actually it’s Koganei in disguise. So she’s still after that kid’s lips, eh? Embarrassing questions pertaining to Nakahito is asked and the field is quickly reduced. In my opinion, those Steel Angels shouldn’t just guess blindly because they should have followed Kurumi who is the best Steel Angel who knows everything about Nakahito, right? So the candidates are narrowed down to Kurumi, Karinka, Yaoi, Kaga and Tsunami. Second round is an Old Maid card game. But Tsunami got disqualified though she finished her cards. Since there are joker cards with Nakahito’s portrait, the rules state that you’re supposed to hold on to them if you love him that much. WTF?! So with Tsunami discarding everything, I guess it’s out for her. Third round is based on luck. Rock-scissors-paper. Karinka lost while Kaga got disqualified because she used some Steel Angel skill in 0.0001 second to cheat. So in the final between Kurumi and Yaoi, they’re supposed to carry Nakahito, complete a jigsaw of his portrait and take him to the goal. It’s a close fight as both sides are neck to neck and Nakahito exchanging hands several times. Racing towards the finish line, their tugging causes Nakahito to be in pain. Kurumi immediately let go and this causes Yaoi to win. Thankfully Yaoi didn’t kiss him because she knew Kurumi did something admirable. Kurumi praises this spy from the military. Eh? How did she recognize her? Her knees! Oh yeah. I forgot about that peculiar recognizing ability. The other Steel Angels aren’t happy and want a rematch seeing a human competitor was involved. However she says that even if they redo, the results will be the same. The reason they got these far is because of their important feelings for each other. A one-sided feeling is no good for a mystic and Steel Angel. If they have feelings, then they will all be able to find a fabulous master. This event was to make them realize that. Yeah, but how did the rock-scissors-paper fit in that? So I guess it has got to be Kurumi for Nakahito, eh?

Steel Angel Kurumi Zero

What the?! What happened?! Suddenly from all that annoying comedy and light-hearted moments, Steel Kurumi Zero suddenly becomes a heavy melodrama that is void of any antics and funny moments that you would expect in this series! You’re not going to laugh a single bit here. Guarantee. The triple OVA episodes are gloomy and serve as a prelude to the birth of Angel Heart. So that is why it is named Zero, eh? So the past takes place in the future. Confused? Maybe that is why Kurumi and her sisters were modelled as we know them. And the stage is just the apartment room they stay in. Never changes. No other characters except them too. Feels like a stage play…

Episode 1
An announcement to advice everyone to stay indoors due to the acid rain. Bored Karinka complains she can’t go out so Excelia warns her not to. Kurumi returns from her club activity and makes a confession. She has a guy she likes. It is her club instructor and she felt happy that they get to chat. Her sisters want to know more but Excelia the landlord isn’t too thrilled. Because Kurumi forgot to ask his name, Excelia looks up the database and his name is Michihito Kagura. Upon realizing his registration number is #132459 Gamma, Excelia suggests they stop searching for more info on him. She tries to dissuade Kurumi from seeing him by throwing questions if she knows where he came from and liking him based on meeting him the first time. Kurumi is adamant she likes him so Saki the moderator settles the situation. As Kurumi and Saki bath together, Kurumi is still worried and unsure. Saki gives her advice and encouragement like a big sister. She believes in her and will support Kurumi. Soon Kurumi announces she not only wants to be with the person she likes, she also wants to see everyone happy. A bright light emits from her body. Is it an angel?

Episode 2
Medical check-up indicates nothing wrong so Karinka thinks it is ESP and she’s an esper. Though Kurumi is worried, Excelia thinks she’ll be a good research subject. Like she wants to be that. The topic changes when Karinka gets upset that her boobs didn’t grow. Next day, Kurumi is off to her club activity and is going to confess to Michihito. She is given several words to say. Saki is positive, Karinka just unsure while Excelia remains pessimistic. She feels it will not go well. Karinka thought of spying on them but Saki thinks that’s rude and has her go shopping so that they can celebrate when Kurumi comes back. Excelia investigates something called Angel Holder in her laptop. As the girls wait for Kurumi to return, they notice she is awfully late. Perhaps they are doing something cheeky? Then when she comes home, they can tell it didn’t go well because she’s putting up a gloomy expression. If you’re not convinced, how about now as Kurumi starts crying and hugging Saki? As explained, Michihito said he loves her. So was it tears of joy? Actually it will only be a week. In one week’s time, Michihito will leave the city and never return. Though he understood her feelings, Kurumi felt it was unfair and continues crying. Karinka then wants to celebrate since Kurumi has a boyfriend and she’s going out. It’s not that she’s heartless but if she cries, Michihito will feel sad and certainly she doesn’t want that, right? Surprise this is coming from Karinka. Kurumi promises not to cry anymore. She then washes her face and the bright light begins emitting again. She thinks her feelings are so strong and that she loves Michihito so much that it shines and takes an appearance of an angel. She believes she’ll be alright since she has the angel’s blessing. Excelia is eavesdropping outside as she notes how she wants to believe the strength of her feelings is calling the angel. Next day, Kurumi leaves for her date as the other girls support her. This goes on for a week till the day Michihito leaves the city. That night, Kurumi couldn’t stop crying. So much about the promise.

Episode 3
Even if Michihito is gone, they still keep in touch via Voice Mail every day. Phew. Thank goodness for technology. Each time the laptop beeps, Kurumi would come rushing just to talk to him. Even if she’s in the middle of the bath and only clad in a towel. But that conversation turns out to be their last. It has been 2 weeks ago since Kurumi heard from him and this causes her to sink into depression and lock herself up in the room. Saki won’t forgive him if he was just playing with her feelings. Karinka notices Excelia have the address of Michihito thanks to her hacking even it is unethical. That guy still reads his mail but why isn’t he contacting Kurumi? Excelia explains that she have known something like this would happen a long time ago and because it would cause Kurumi to be shocked, she didn’t say anything. Remember his registration number? Seeing he has a Gamma, it means he is a Holder. When humans feel inferior, they submit into a life of humility and live in an unconscious state. So what happened to Kurumi was caused by him saying he loves her. This illness may take a toll on his health and his body may stop functioning. Excelia continues explaining about living things, existence and fate. Showing the scars when she once cut her wrist, Excelia too was once a Holder. Getting out of her sickness was her goal in life and meeting Kurumi, Saki and Karinka gave her a new power of life. That is the reason why she is alive now. To cure Michihito’s illness, Kurumi must summon the angel. Suddenly the laptop beeps and instantly Kurumi rushes out to answer it, beating everyone else who was nearby -_-. She starts pouring out the things she do, her feelings, that she wants to kiss him and knows he is dying and in pain. In tears, she will summon the angel to ensure his happiness because she loves him. When she says those 3 magic words, again bright light emits from within and this time an angel materializes. Excelia narrates that this is what Ayanokouji said. Fairness is disguised. An angel descends. An angel’s calling. The angel appears to a person of pure heart. Its existence was contained in her heart and therefore the Angel Heart was summoned. I guess this was the memories Kurumi had when she was first awakened by Nakahito’s kiss in the lab. Kyuiiin!!!

Steel Angel Kurumi Ni Shiki

This sequel doesn’t feel like a reboot of the series nor does it feel like a direct continuation. Taking place 75 years after the first season ended, Steel Angel Kurumi Ni Shiki sees the usual gang but as new second generation Steel Angels in a new modern misadventure of their own. New era, new environment, new master, some upgrades, but same ol’ habits die hard, right? Right. But this sequel feels more yuri in fact and there aren’t any ‘real’ enemy and drama that we see in the original first season. Yeah, feels like some mindless plot for Kurumi to stay with her new master 24/7 and other jealous people who are bent on separating them. So what about being protectors of mankind’s future? Have they forgotten about that? Not Kurumi, the producers lah.

Episode 1
Nako Kagura isn’t just a miko priestess but a cellist playing to the crowd. Did I mention that she is clumsy too because she almost stepped on a chicken on her way down. Yeah, everybody thought it was somewhat funny that she tripped. Oh, I may want to add she is a simpleton too because she gullibly believes Misaki, her mom’s word that she will meet a lovely person this week (she got it from an astrology book) and for that matter she has to prepare a room with 2 years worth of textbooks by taking it to the unoccupied warehouse. While transporting the books, she meets her friend Uruka Sumeragi who helps her out. Nako shows an underground path she recently discovered. Curiosity kills the cat as they venture down the dark path. Uruka teases scaredy cat Nako that there is something when it’s just a lie. But the second time round, there IS something. Making a run for it, they get lost in the labyrinth till the seek refuge in a dark room. The pursuer inches closer and it is revealed to be a cute dog. As Nako is infatuated with its cuteness, something tells us this isn’t just an ordinary dog. See its computerized eyes as it is scanning its surroundings? Suddenly the room activates. The Buddha statue starts flying towards them. Another round of running around the underground maze till they finally get above ground. The statue seems like it is going to stomp on Nako when a bright light swallows her. Inside the light, Nako hears a voice (sounds like Ayanokouji) wanting her to hear his wish. Seeing her as the successor of this temple and for the sake of the future, he wants her to revive his daughter, the new advanced and reformed type of Steel Angel. She is Kurumi. Not just Kurumi but Kurumi Ni Shiki (Second Generation). The statue cracks open and falling out comes Kurumi. I suppose at the angle you can’t escape your lips getting kissed. So with that awakening kiss like how Prince Charming did to Sleeping Beauty, Kurumi wakes up and Nako becomes her master. It’s starting all over again.

Episode 2
Kurumi is so happy that Nako is her master that she kisses her again! Uruka is horrified because well, Nako’s lips are supposed to belong to her. I guess that says a lot. Nako thought she was just dreaming when she wakes up in bed with Misaki by her side. Apparently not. Kurumi is there too. Misaki seems to know a little about Steel Angels because grandpa used to tell her stories about them (though very exaggerated). Plus, she had grandpa’s diary that explains them all. Yeah, that diary that they always used as a coaster for hot cooking pots. No respect for books… Though Kurumi can’t remember much of her adventure before this awakening, her (annoying) cheerfulness is still there. Then the doggie comes in and it is revealed to be Can-1, Kurumi’s companion. However Misaki gets infatuated and attached to that cute dog. Now she makes it her new companion, eh? Nako takes a bath and we recognize Kurumi’s trademark airhead-ness as she gets in with her while making a big foam with the body soap. Uruka returns to her mansion so dejected, so long face that her dad, Tenkai is shocked that his beloved daughter didn’t respond to his greeting. Uruka in her room tries to calm down but she can’t help think that Nako’s lips have been stolen but that pink airhead. Now getting frantic, Uruka takes her binoculars to check on Nako’s household (they are neighbours by the way). To her horror, she sees Nako running out in her towel while being chased by naked Kurumi. Uruka breaks down in tears and to eavesdropping Tenkai, he is going to get to the bottom of this as he calls GAIN, the family’s troops. Yeah, it’s a big deal if his precious daughter cries. Next morning, Kurumi goes to school with Nako. Seems Misaki has arranged for her to be in the same class. Off Kurumi carries Nako jumping and gliding through the air. Nako is thrilled with this jet coaster-like ride. However that enjoyment comes crashing down when Kurumi mentions she doesn’t know where her school is. Great. So now they’re lost.

Episode 3
Somehow they manage to reach school but Kurumi continues to be the cheerful airhead despite being late, much to the teacher’s ire. Kurumi is clinging to Nako so close that everyone is talking about them. Jealous? Uruka’s worse fears come true when she spots them together. At the rooftop, Uruka finds out that Kurumi has bathed, slept and even borrowed Nako’s pantsu! All true but somewhat exaggerated. She wants Nako to stay away from this person because she thinks she’ll be taken advantage of due to her quiet nature. But Kurumi starts getting teary eyed wondering if she’s bothersome (we think she is). I’m sure Nako couldn’t go with Uruka’s flow and her heart softens when she sees Kurumi in that state. So yeah, Kurumi is not bothersome. While Kurumi rejoices, Uruka sinks into further depression. Meanwhile Tenkai receives an application of Kurumi as the transfer student from Misaki. Then he receives a call that GAIN has been dispatched to ease Uruka’s heart and that they have found the ‘enemy’. On the screen, Tenkai is shocked to see Kurumi’s picture. He wants GAIN to start their mission immediately! Now it’s his turn to go hysterical. As Kurumi carries Nako out of school, a stealth bomber parachutes down a mecha that suddenly attacks them. For some reason, Uruka can tell this robot from the family’s army division is from her dad. Yeah, the mecha’s name is codenamed Uruka. The principal can’t do anything about the mecha smashing around the school grounds simply because of the written agreement. I can tell his hands are tied by a certain someone. Kurumi evades with ease the mecha’s blows but when Nako gets hurt by a wood splinter, Kurumi gets mad and calls forth Can-1. Instantly that canine comes flying (transformed into a jet?!) and then Kurumi rips apart her school uniform (WTF?!) so that Can-1 can deliver her maid uniform with a few enhanced features (for a transformation scene I guess). WTF?! Then in a single strike, she destroys the mecha. While everyone is shocked at what they see, Kurumi realizes she has just ripped the uniform Misaki gave her and calls herself an idiot. Uruka notes she isn’t an ordinary girl. Tenkai is upset that his mecha got trashed and in his anger accidentally breaks his Buddha statue. But this uncovers a sleeping Saki…

Episode 4
Tenkai plans to awake Saki and make her as part of his family agents for the sake of Uruka’s smile. Kurumi excels in sports that she has gathered a huge number of fans. How does it feel like to be in the spotlight now? Kurumi listens to Nako playing her cello. Her cellist teacher, Yutaka Kizuki praises her playing though there is room for improvement. Kurumi didn’t like Kizuki for wanting to make Nako practice forever. But if Nako says Kizuki is a nice person, Kurumi accepts him. Tenkai’s bunch of scientists are at a dead end. They can’t seem to activate Saki and the big boss wants her awakened now. Uruka spots them and she misinterprets what they are doing with a body naked of a lady. Kurumi and Nako return home and they are surprised Uruka is there (probably she bribed Misaki with lots of seafood). Actually Uruka is here on a mission. Tenkai wanted her to retrieve a secret book on Steel Angels believed to be in Nako’s household to activate Saki. So for the sake of their future, Uruka pretends to be a nice and friendly girl (despite how she loathes it). When Nako and Kurumi take a bath together, she starts searching the place but Can-1 interrupts by chasing her around. She blames all this happening to her on Kurumi. After dinner, Uruka thought of staying for the night seeing she doesn’t want to be home alone. Nako and Kurumi thought they spot somebody (Tenkai peeping with his binoculars) on Uruka’s mansion’s veranda but Uruka panics and dismisses they are seeing things. Then she sees the secret book being used as the pot’s coaster. She starts acting strangely, distracts the ladies to take the book and changes her mind to return home since she did saw her father on the veranda. Bedtime, Kurumi asks if Nako likes Kizuki. She dismisses that fact and she only admires him because he is a great cellist. Kurumi wants her to choose who she loves more. Kizuki or her. Of course she can’t. Tenkai praises Uruka for getting the book and now nothing will stop them from achieving their goals. Yeah, keep dreaming…

Episode 5
Reading the book’s instructions, Tenkai doesn’t believe the rubbish of the needed love bond and kiss to awaken Saki. Uruka is still delusional. She sees Nako in Saki and fantasises that they will be together from now on. So much so she kisses Saki! Oh sh*t!!! Yeah, her first kiss went to a Steel Angel instead of a certain someone. But look on the bright side. Saki indeed awakens. Uruka finds it odd that Saki keeps calling her her master. Saki (in teary eyes) wonders if she has seen her other sisters but of course Uruka doesn’t know anything about this. Misaki makes Kurumi debut as a miko priestess along with Nako to revive the shrine. It doesn’t disappoint because with all the crazy fan girls squealing, they rake in big money. So much money that they can even afford shabu-shabu. Uruka still dreams of her ultimate dream with Nako when Saki wants to wash her back. She relents when she puts on that teary eye act again. Uruka feels disgusted at Saki’s praises about her beautiful soft white skin. Next day, Kurumi receives a love letter in her shoe locker and is about to discard it but Nako says she mustn’t break the heart of her admirer. If she says so. As Kurumi waits for the person, it seems this is a setup so that Saki can destroy her in one shot in a surprise attack as instructed by Uruka. Saki pulls off a powerful punch but Kurumi is able to catch it before it connects to her face (not without creating a powerful crater in the wall!). With their Angel Heart resonating, Saki recognizes her sister and rejoices. Hmm… Looks like she still has some affection for Kurumi since she is holding her arm. Kurumi also remembers her and introduces her to Nako. She learns Uruka as Saki’s new master and since they live next door to each other, they can see each other often. Isn’t that good? Well, not for Uruka, who is appalled ever since this development unfolded. What a turn of events. Didn’t expect this, eh? Kurumi concludes that it was Uruka who sent the love letter to get Saki to meet them. Saki is grateful but I’m sure that wasn’t her intention, right? Nako didn’t know Kurumi had a sister and Kurumi really would’ve forgotten all about her if not for today. Yeah, there are loads of other things she can’t remember. So I guess both sisters are so happy that they start waving and calling to each other right across the room, eh? Uruka is saddened that her first kiss was laid to waste and blames Saki. She thought she’s having a nightmare and sleeps with her. I’m sure that’s not the problem. Next day, Kurumi and Nako find Saki a transfer student in Uruka’s class. Hey wait a minute. If Uruka is a year older than Nako and Saki is Kurumi’s younger sister, doesn’t that make things complicated? Oh what the heck, since Kurumi has got Nako (hugging all over her) and Saki has Uruka (holding her arm closely). Nako feels this is bad luck while Uruka a great evil.

Episode 6
Nako plays the cello much to the delight to Kizuki and the rest. He thinks it’s like she’s in love. Nako denies but Kurumi insists she is. This is where Uruka affirms that Nako IS NOT in love. Saki realizes Kurumi and Uruka love Nako but she herself loves Kurumi and Nako. She wishes she was Nako. Love is so one-sided, eh? Later when Uruka finds out Misaki is making swimsuits for Nako, she offers to take them to her private island in the south when Misaki agrees to make a swimsuit for her. Uruka thought she could get rid of the Steel Angels by not letting them on the plane, giving an excuse they are heavy. No problem. Just fly alongside the plane! Uruka finds her swimsuit to be quite revealing and sexy. To her dismay, Nako and Kurumi are wearing the same pattern. Did Misaki run out of materials? Or could it mean her swimsuit is meant to be a special treat? Uruka laments she couldn’t spend a single second with Nako because Kurumi keeps hogging her. While they are out on a boat, Uruka plans to get rid of Kurumi by telling her about the legendary lemon pearls. If they find and give to their loved one, they’ll forever be together. Kurumi dives down as Uruka is confident she’ll not come back up. Indeed there is a lemon pearl factory on the sea floor but it is tightly guarded and will not let a single intruder in. This will spell Kurumi’s doom. Or so she thinks. Kurumi is attacked by mechanical sharks and one of them took her top. Saki dives in to see what’s taking her so long and sees what’s happening. Kurumi is adamant to get that top back (because Misaki made it for her) as she summons Can-1. The dog turns into a fish tail so Kurumi can match the sharks’ speed.  Saki helps take out the sharks as well as riding the missiles to take out other torpedoes. WTF?! In the end, Kurumi crashes through the factory and manages to get her top back. But the factory explodes and rains lemon pearls. Nako thought she saw a mermaid but it turned out to be Kurumi. Back on shore, Kurumi gives Nako a lemon pearl and is so happy they can be together forever. Uruka is left cursing the outcome and doesn’t accept Saki’s lemon pearl.

Episode 7
Several priests are in a ceremony to awake Karinka. Uruka isn’t happy Kurumi once again is too close to Nako and calls dad to unleash another mecha. He’s already sent one as they speak but soon as the giant robot lands, Kurumi destroys it in a single punch and is pissed for interrupting another together-time with Nako. Back to the drawing board… Because Nako intends to enter a concour, she didn’t tell Kurumi and co that she’ll be back late and practises under the eyes of Kizuki. Since Misaki too isn’t home, Saki offers to cook for Kurumi and Uruka. She is happy they will get to taste her cooking. Uruka on the other hand is grumpy seeing she is invited but Nako isn’t around. Then they wait for Nako to return so they can start. Time passes and it’s getting late. Kurumi turns on the TV to bide the time. A channel is showing a woman pouring out her troubles that her husband had an affair with someone in his club and they both eloped! Uruka fears the worst as this may be happening to Nako. She starts screaming right in the middle of the room! Some delusion she got. Thinking she is in danger, Kurumi takes her and rushes to school. Looks like Saki will have to wait for another time for them to taste her cooking. Uruka is uneasy flying so high so she struggles and accidentally covers Kurumi’s eyes. This causes her to crash into the school building. Rushing along, Uruka is disheartened to see Kizuki close to Nako. Could it be true? Actually because of that ‘earthquake’, Nako fell and he was just applying a band aid. Uruka realizes she slipped up this time and just says they were here to get her since it’s late. Kizuki notes the nice and caring friends she has. Kurumi carries Nako on her back and she gets her confidence to do her best for the concour. Nearby, Misaki meets a priest who tells her that the last Steel Angel of the second generation series has been recovered and will revive soon. She is worried the effect it will have. So after all that chanting, Karinka finally opens her eyes.

Episode 8
Karinka is surprised at the development of the city 75 years on. Yeah, she sports a new hairstyle and her outfit isn’t dangerously revealing like the last time. Kurumi is throwing a tantrum by herself because she is bored and Nako is busy with her cello lessons. Uruka revels in her despair till she realizes she too is in the same predicament. Saki gets an idea and tells Uruka that Nako’s class has been cancelled and wants to meet her at the park. She also tells this to Kurumi. If you’re wondering why Nako didn’t tell them directly it’s because it’s Saki’s scheme to meet them both at the park in Nako’s stead. Then she’ll use Nako’s lateness to accompany them and they’ll have a swell time together. You and I know this isn’t going to work out the way she wants. And since Kurumi and Uruka are so infatuated that they’re going to be with Nako, they didn’t really bother to think logically. As Saki runs along, she gets attacked by Karinka. Uruka and Kurumi bump into each other at the park and while waiting for Nako to show up, Uruka shows pictures of them as childhood friends. She envies Kurumi who can be honest with her feelings but Kurumi feels Uruka too can be like her. Suddenly Kurumi’s heart feels pain. She gets a telepathic warning from Saki about their little sister. Suddenly the liner crashes onto land close to them (I wonder how Karinka hijacked and steered this big ship) and Saki is tied to the pole on the edge of it. Karinka meets Kurumi and wants her to come with her to meet the people who revived her. Because Kurumi doesn’t remember anything, Karinka’s reminder about Steel Angels to serve humans, bla, bla, bla, didn’t ring a bell to the airhead. So Karinka beats her up and chides her for the things she is doing now which is not accomplishing her true purpose. Kurumi doesn’t fight back while Uruka watches in horror. Then when it starts raining, Nako and Can-1 come by and see the inevitable.

Episode 9
Karinka tells Nako she is going to take her sisters with her and that she is too weak to even oppose her. So don’t even think about fighting back. Kurumi surprises her by getting back up on her feet despite still being weak. Kurumi says she’ll always wait for her master and this prompts Karinka to further pound her. Uruka tries to wake Saki up but there is no response. Karinka gets cocky while fighting Kurumi (who has called forth Can-1’s powers) and blames her for all that has happened. Nako didn’t want the sisters fighting but Karinka lashes back she doesn’t know anything and smacks her. This of course enrages Kurumi. Meanwhile Uruka is desperate to awaken Saki and kisses her the second time. Saki immediately opens her eyes. Uruka blames Kurumi that Nako is hurt but wants Saki to discipline her disobedient little sister. Then she realizes her second kiss… Karinka didn’t like the fact she could feel Kurumi’s power in her Angel Heart despite having the advantage. Kurumi and Saki team up to fight Karinka but are still no match. Nako’s worries and feelings reached Kurumi that her Angel Heart starts to power up. Karinka couldn’t believe the surge in power and continues attacking. Kurumi is able to stop her attack with just a palm. It ends with Karinka’s defeat as she realizes Kurumi’s sudden power. It took 120 priests to awaken her but only a small frail girl to awaken Kurumi. Before she falls into the sea, she also realizes how cute Nako is. Oh dear… Misaki notes this is Nako’s true power. Her love is what makes a Steel Angel strong. With that power, they will make the future better. As everyone reunite, Uruka and Kurumi get into an argument about the power of love. They try to outdo each other that their love for Nako is bigger than the other. You must be tired of hearing this, Nako girl? She thought pinpointing at the rainbow would solve it all, but it only fuels their love argument. Bridge of love? Yeah, they even get Nako involved… Guess what happens the next day? Karinka becomes the new transfer student in Nako’s class! She shoves off the girl sitting next to Nako and makes that her seat. Kurumi not very happy… Just great. Now she gets another rival and the bickering is not going to simmer down. Bad luck for Nako indeed.

Episode 10
Karinka is now staying at Nako’s place. Don’t ask. Because of that, she and Kurumi get into an argument that results in breaking Nako’s precious cello! Oh sh*t!!! Though later Nako forgives them, the duo still feel guilty. And the concour is around the corner. However Uruka saves the day as she brings Nako back to her mansion. To her delight, it is filled with various famous cello brands. Hmph. Rich people and their money… Since they are expensive, Nako has to practice here and so for the time being, she stays at Uruka’s place. Uruka even had Kizuki come to her mansion to guide Nako. Kurumi and Karinka lament Nako not around and because of them she got into trouble. Thinking Nako wants her cello back, they decide to go buy it but you know how expensive one is, right? So how? Work part time. Man, with these ladies using their super strength like child’s play, the construction company should just hire them and fire all the other workers. They don’t even need equipments because the Steel Angels themselves are sufficed in carrying all the heavy materials. So in the end, they manage to buy the cello (the pay must be damn good for them to buy it this fast) and on their way to meet Nako, the head priest who revived Karinka, Toushi confronts them. He is not happy Karinka disobeyed his order and is now siding with the enemy. He and his priestesses (it’s odd to see them in office saleswoman clothes rather than miko priestess outfit) subdue them both. But Kurumi’s Angel Heart resonates as her feelings for Nako is strong. They break out of the barrier and continue their journey. Toushi wanted to give chase but was stopped by Misaki. She wants the Steel Angels to continue doing what they are doing now (protecting their loved ones and enriching their heart) and not let this old bastard decide the future he claims he is protecting. Toushi agrees to back off but cautions he will be watching them. Nako is happy Kurumi and Nako got her a new cello as she lets them hear the fruits of her practice. Uruka is back to her grumpy ways because Kurumi butted in. Then as she watches the TV programme on the upcoming cello concour, she learns the winner will be an exchange student at a prestigious music academy in Wien, Austria. Then it hit her. Nako will be going away! NO WAAAAAAAAAAAYYYYY!!!!!!!

Episode 11
Kurumi asks Nako why she wants to be a cellist. It is her dream to go around the world to let people listen and comprehend her music. The concour is tomorrow as Uruka reluctantly meets Kurumi about Nako going away if she wins the concour. They don’t want to be separated from her, right? Nako comes up with devious schemes to prevent Nako from attending the concour but they all seem criminal-like. Because gloomy Kurumi didn’t say anything and even if she did, it was just she doesn’t know anything anymore, Uruka gets upset that she’s all talk about protecting her master, bla, bla, bla. She’s not going to rely on her. Uruka sees her dad and begs him to give her the latest Mobile Armour that is still in experimenting phase. She even agrees to be the test pilot. Though reluctant, he eventually agrees seeing Uruka ‘threatens’ she will not smile for him. Always daddy’s girl… Misaki walking back from an errand late that night sees Karinka alone and sad. Karinka tells her about Nako going away and thinks she will be sad if that happens. Misaki gives her advice like parents normally do. To believe in your own feelings. Early dawn, Uruka is at the gates of Nako’s home. She is adamant to stop Nako even if this will make Nako hate her. But right in front of her is Kurumi. All Kurumi wants is to hear Nako’s cello performance and doesn’t want Uruka to interfere with her dream. She takes Uruka far away but is intercepted by Karinka as she crashes onto a building top. Karinka mentions abut Nako’s power required to save the future and thus the need for her to get stronger. That’s why it’ll be bad if Nako goes away. Uruka thought she has the same thoughts as her but Karinka tells her not to get the wrong idea and that their feelings are different. Despite so, they have a common goal and same opponent. The power battle begins and at the rate they’re going, they might just destroy the building. Hmm… The Mobile Armour Uruka is wearing looks scanty… Maybe that is what makes it light but destructive. Though Kurumi gets beaten up, she’s not going down easily because she is going to protect Nako’s dream. Nako wakes up and prepares to head for the concour, unaware what is happening between her childhood friend and the Steel Angels.

Episode 12
Nako is nervous as the concour begins. But she is going to do her best for everyone’s sake. Speaking of which, it’s her turn. Meanwhile Kurumi always stands right back up even after being beaten to a pulp by Uruka and Karinka. Toushi and his priestesses are chanting faraway but it has no effect. Once they think Kurumi is down for good, they rush over to the music hall. Nako has already started playing so how? Uruka is going to fire her missiles into the hall!!! WTF?! What is she thinking?! Nako is inside and will get hurt! She doesn’t care? There’s no other way?! However Saki (carrying Kurumi with her) pleads them not to do it. Kurumi still has enough strength to rant about her master’s dreams. She doesn’t want Nako to become sad and wants her smiling always. Uruka takes on Kurumi in yet another flashy missile battle while Kurumi reminisces the good times she spent with Nako. It’s amazing that nobody heard the missile explosions rocking outside. Ironically, Kurumi could hear Nako’s cello instead. After taking a direct blast (even Can-1 got blown off), her feelings for Nako are so strong that her Angel Heart activates and a bright light emits. She sprouts wings of a white angel. Everyone including Toushi and his priestesses are amazed at the sight. Except for Uruka. I guess it wasn’t the bright light that blinded her. It’s her jealousy. She is still adamant on taking care of Kurumi despite pleas from Saki not to. Then after memories of Nako flashes through her mind, she then realizes and stops her actions. She breakdowns and comes to terms that she too wants Nako’s dreams to come true. At the end of the concour, Nako is announced as the winner. Later Nako goes to meet the gang outside, though she is puzzled with Kurumi’s messed up appearance and Uruka’s flashy fashion. They congratulate her and wish her all the best overseas. However she says she is not going abroad. That’s because the winner of the high school division will be going to Wien. Plus, she really doesn’t want to go overseas in the first place. What a big relief! And this means a big hug from happy Kurumi. I guess this also means back to the normal bickering over Nako’s attention. Yeah, Uruka and Karinka want Kurumi to stop hogging Nako all to herself. Nako thinks this tussle is some ultra deluxe bad luck, but a good one. WTF?! Then it isn’t bad luck, right? So Nako and Kurumi continue to live together with the latter carrying her all the way to school while the rest wait for them at the gates.

Kyuiin! Goshujin-sama, ~desu…
Those are the 3 words that I would exactly summarize what Kurumi is. More accurately, these are somewhat her favourite words. Basically, I find Kurumi quite annoying throughout the series. In both seasons, her persistence in wanting to be with her master makes it irritating to watch. And being such a ditzy airhead herself, it is somewhat silly. I’m not saying that I hate her, just that how can a moe heroine be so irritating in almost every scene she appears? I’ll give her full points for her unwavering loyalty towards her master but she needs to learn about restraint and reservation. It’s like there is almost no private time for her master to be by himself/herself. She’s always bugging to be with her master and attaches herself like a leech. Plus, the way she hangs on and wants to do everything makes her an overprotective manic. However she can be too demanding when it’s come to reassuring if her master loves her or somebody else more. How can you even compare? But then again, being an airhead has its good points. She doesn’t really understand those complicated stuffs and simply goes with her guts feeling of love. Yeah, love conquers all. Like the saying goes, those who actually win are those who don’t really keep count of the score. And yes, the early bird catches the worm too. What do these idioms have to do with Kurumi? That’s right. She’s usually the first to get her arms wrapped around her master. I think she can break the world record of the most hugs and embraces done in a lifetime. Oh, what about that uncanny ability to recognize knees? I don’t know if it’s a programme error. Since she has no shutdown feature too, I guess changing her attitude won’t be possible, eh?

The disparity between the first and second season left a lot to be desired. There were many questions forming in my head by the time I finished the entire series and I was hoping the second season would somehow have some connection with the first. What happened to Nakahito and the gang during the Taisho era. How did Kurumi and her sisters end up in a frozen state before being found by their new masters. Why Kurumi doesn’t remember much about her past despite being a mechanical doll/robot. How the heck did Can-1 became Kurumi’s companion. It’s like as thought the second season is a spin-off unrelated to the first season. It’s like they’re using the main characters from the first season and inject it into a new series with a modern twist. Therefore any answers for all my questions were never answered and the second season just ended with a big letdown. 75 years must be a big gap to fill and definitely things must have changed. Thus the second season’s plot tussling and fighting over Nako seemed like a filler and rather forgettable as compared to the first season’s plot in which we had the mind boggling people from the future trying to save humanity by going back to the past. The threat of the real enemy Demonkind never felt it was there all along. We were just told some super alien being is destroying mankind in the future and the Steel Angels combined with the powers of mysticism are their only hope. Hence, the first season was like fighting against inner demons and clash of ideals instead of unravelling the mystery that may be the key to save the world. At the rate we see Kurumi and her sisters are going 75 years later, are we so sure mankind will be able to defeat those Demonkind? Besides, if I want to start thinking about those time paradoxes, I would have a severe migraine now so it’s better I stop all those questions of how the future will change by changing the past because if you do, the change in the course of history may not even make you present in the future and thus the inability to send you back in time to change history. Phew. I think I just got a headache there.

Commenting on Saki, I find her to be just a quiet observer. I know she displays more lady-like manners than her other sisters but in both seasons I feel she’s just like an observer as she can’t really butt in or intervene to make a difference. Each time things don’t go her way or as she wishes, she’ll just lament and heave a sigh. So if Saki wasn’t part of the main heroines, I guess the story will still move on and will not tangent off drastically. Karinka is the brat of the pack and causing trouble is her specialty. Especially to Kurumi. Her temperamental and scheming behaviour makes her fun to watch but I guess she lacks luck the reason why Kurumi always comes out top. In both seasons, Karinka’s debut is somewhat similar. She is awakened by an unconventional method, seeks Kurumi to beat her up, doesn’t obey her master’s orders, just when she loses to Kurumi she doesn’t care about her anymore and her new target is to get close with Kurumi’s master. Say, I’m wondering what happened to all the other Steel Angels. Since they have made their appearance in the first season, there were none other than the usual trio in the sequel. Are they saying Kurumi, Saki and Karinka are the only Steel Angels awakened in this era? Or have the others gone to the scrap metal factory? Besides, don’t you think that the other Steel Angels’ costume look like cosplay outfits? You can mistake them for being an otaku convention gathering. I guess the creators got creative in designing their clothes too, huh?

For Kurumi’s masters, they may both be nothing extraordinary and weaker than what many would perceive as main heroes and heroines in animes (they’re kids for heaven’s sake). Though they find it troublesome having Kurumi around at first, gradually they learn to understand and accept her. So going through all the misadventures must have blossomed their relationship. The annoyance becomes part of the routine and I bet if Kurumi isn’t around anymore, they would feel lonely without her smile despite her being an airhead. So what happened to Nakahito and Kurumi at the end of the first season is anyone’s guess. Heck, they may even get married but and even though there are some things that seemed impossible between humans and Steel Angels, I suppose this pair can make it happen. Yeah, love is always the answer. It may be hinted that Nakahito may be Nako’s grandpa but this is just my speculation. So what about Nako and Kurumi? I think it will turn out yuri. The antagonists in the series aren’t really baddies. Walski and Brandow were just doing what they feel they believe is the best path for both sides while Uruka was totally blinded by jealousy. Probably they had focus on the wrong thing because they feel Kurumi is the source of their trouble and must be eliminated. Once they get their perspectives right, they understood that it isn’t just about Kurumi but everyone else that is associated with her. The other minor characters aren’t that prominent though they play a little role in the development of the story. Romance wise, besides the tussle between the main characters, the rest felt like unrequited love. Ayanokouji x Amagi? Didn’t happen. General still has his obsession over Karinka? Maybe he died happy in his dreams. Koganei and Kichijoji’s admiration over Nakahito and Amagi respectively? Maybe it’s best to just keep it to themselves. Will Uruka ever make Nako hers? You already know the answer. As long as a certain ‘demon’ is around, those childhood memories are her only salvation. I hope Uruka learns that no matter how filthy rich she is, money can’t buy me love. You need to earn that.

The action bits are rather okay and it may feel exaggerative because the Steel Angels pack a power punch so a big crater is to be expected if they miss their target. The way they go rocking is like they could level the place in minutes if no winner is decided. Besides, I’ve been pondering this in the second season. Wouldn’t the Demonkind sealed inside the Angel Heart appear if Steel Angels were made to fight each other? Kurumi and Karinka do have their bout but the threat of the demon was never really present in the second season. Unless as said back in the first season, all traces of Demonkind vanished at the end after that revelation kiss. Can-1 as additional accessory to Kurumi’s arsenal felt insignificant and if it wasn’t a dog, it could be something else like say, a machine.  Either way, it isn’t going to play any significant role in changing anything big. It’s just an excuse to make Kurumi fly and have a little more variety to her attacks instead of her usual punches and kicks. As for the fanservice, there are little bits of nudity here. Meaning you can see the tits of the girls when they enter the bath or hotspring. The short opening animation of advising viewers to watch at a safe distance in a well-lit room is a little amusing because the characters are drawn in chibi form. Sometimes they make funny comments especially those episodes featuring an unknown character at first, which will have our main Steel Angel going “Who is that person?”. I find it odd with the next episode preview. I don’t know why or the reason behind this but it is done twice. After the first version of the preview, the second version has a slightly different set of lines and dialogues with some scenes differing from the first.

Atsuko Enomoto is okay in portraying Kurumi as an airhead. She was the voice of Misaki in Angelic Layer and Yukino in Kare Kano. Sometimes I feel hearing too much of Kurumi’s kawaii voice and speech pattern may start to get on to your nerves… Veteran Rie Tanaka as Saki is still fine voicing polite characters like Alice in Cube x Cursed x Curious and Chi in Chobits as opposed to devilish ones like Suigin Tou of Rozen Maiden and crazier ones as in Sanada from UFO Princess Valkyrie. Other casts include Masayo Kurata as Karinka (Koyomi in Girls Bravo, Shinobu in Love Hina), Houko Kuwashima as Nakahito and Nako (Sango in Inu Yasha – I guess you can say though Kurumi have different masters in different times, they’re still by the same seiyuu, eh? ), Hirotaka Suzuoki as Ayanokouji (Tatewaki Kuno in Ranma 1/2), Ai Orikasa as Amagi (Ayame in Sakura Wars), Yasunori Matsumoto as Kamihito (Galian in Marchen Awakens Romance), Tomomichi Nishimura as Walski (Elder in Chrno Crusade), Toshiyuki Morikawa as Brandow (Naraku in Inu Yasha), Kikuko Inoue as Nadeshiko (Belldandy in Aa! Megami-sama), Omi Minami as Excelia (Mika in Doki Doki School Hours), Mie Sonozaki as Uruka (Hazuki in Happy Lesson), Kotono Mitsuishi as Misaki (Excel in Excel Saga), Rikako Aikawa as Can-1 (Hare in Hare+Guu) and Unshou Ishizuka as Tenkai (Bunta in Initial D).

All the themes are sung by the seiyuus of Kurumi, Saki and Karinka. The opening theme, Kiss Kara Hajimaru Miracle is an infectious and cute song despite sounding a little silly. What do you think of the song with lyrics like these: “Pawafuru mirakuru ima kuru; Hajikeru majikaru wandafuru’ Rirkaru Komikaru koi suru torokeru; Mi-ra-ku-ru-mi”. Sweet… Rhyme-y… Probably this song is one of the few best parts and saving grace of the series. The second season version is the same song but given a more modern techno and dance beat. Yeah, now you can dance to the tune too. The first season’s ending theme, Eien No Kotetsu Tenshi sounds dramatic with all that horns blowing in the background. Steel Angel Kurumi Encore’s ending theme, Suki-suki-suki-suKisu Shite sounds like it’s back to that cutie silly but lively pop style again. As with the dark and gloomy theme of Steel Angel Zero’s theme, the ending theme called Hajimari No Kiseki sounds just that. The second season’s ending song is Sunda Aozora No Mukou Ni and is a slow-moderate anime pop piece. There is also a live action version of this series but I didn’t watch it. I briefly read it is something similar but has its own divergence from the anime as well. Well, don’t want to be watching more of Kurumi’s annoyance in 3D.

Having this kind of maid sticking around you may be annoying, bad luck or the work of the devil but consider it a blessing in disguise. It shows that not only the popular people get the girl (or a maid or cybernetic robot in this case). And you can always depend on them to do everything from A to Z without complain. We’re just not sure of the sex part seeing Nakahito didn’t get to try it out with any of the trio because he’s too shy and underage. Whoops… So watch this show if you only like your maids with super powers and sugary-coated moe. Otherwise you won’t get anything much (perhaps just guilty pleasure) or lose anything important. Okay, maybe just your time if you are the kind of person who feels that time is so precious that it is not to be wasted. Even so, what the heck are you watching anime? But really, a kiss just to activate a high-tech and lifelike robot? If it was that easy, you don’t need a rocket scientist to bring life into such automaton. Call it the kiss of life, but can I do the same if my computer isn’t working?