It has been a long time since I watched Hidan no Aria. It’s an enjoyable Kugimiya Rie tsundere show filled with badass girls fighting against criminals and an evil organization known as the “IU.” While a sequel did not get announced, there is a spinoff that recieved an adaptation called Hidan no Aria AA focused on a girl who is a fangirl of Aria with a mostly female cast. Does it live up to it’s title? Let’s find out.
The story focuses around a girl named Mamiya Akari, who is a first year student at Butei High School. She dreams of becoming a Brutei like Aria and work by her side. However, things do not seem to go well after she failed the preliminary test that puts her at Rank E. In other words, she is at the bottom of her class compared to her friends, Raika and Shino.
After learning about Amica, a type of mentor, she creates an application to have Aria become hers. Aria eventually challenges Akari to a test in order to become one by taking her gun. Akari needs to get it back to win. Although she has difficulties keeping up with her, she was able to get it back for a moment before Aria took it back.
Aria eventually accepts her application with one condition, it won’t become official until Akari gets back her gun. While Akari works with Aria, Aria notices that she is intentionally holding herself back after seeing her use certain abilities that Butei normally don’t know. She sets out to find out why as Akari and her friends improve their skills to face a formidable enemy in the future.
I have to admit that the characters are a lot more enjoyable compared to the main series considering that Kinji is not the main character, but rather on a group of badass and adorable girls that can kick butt. Sure, this show is light-hearted since it emphasizes more on romantic two girl relationships, namely Akari having a crush on Aria while Shino and Urara tries to win Akari’s heart at the same time. The only exception to this is Raika and Kirin who has their own relationship.
In addition, other characters such as Shirayuki, Riko and Reki also have minor appearances aside from Aria of course and they help out the main cast once in a while. Moreover, Aria is not as cold compared to the main series. Even so, Akari’s personality reminds me of Cocoa from Gochuumon aside from these characters being voiced by the same voice actress.
Compared to the main series, I have to say that the action is somewhat disappointing. This becomes apparent with the 5th episode showing the first reak operation and an opportunity for Akari to improve her rank at the same time. Otherwise, there are not much action-packed scenes except for the beginning, middle and the last two episodes. Sure, the last two episode somewhat improved things, but it couldn’t fix the lack of action packed scenes that were in the main series. It’s somewhat of a disappointment since I wanted to see an all-girls team kick IU’s and criminals’ butt.
In the end, while Hidan no Aria AA lacks the action-packed moments from the main series, I have to admit that the two-girl relationships were the main draw of this show. Sure, it could have been so much better with the action scenes, but I guess having things like Urara and Shino working together to win Akari’s heart and Raika confessing her love for Kirin pretty much levels out the flaws to make it a decent show to watch even if it’s not that groundbreaking.
Strengths: Enjoyable light-hearted moments and characters.
Weaknesses: The action scenes for the operations are lackluster compared to the main series (not to mention, they are only two to three big ones). Also, the ending feels somewhat rushed, especially when Suimitsutou, Kyochikutou’s older sister coming in with little character development.
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