"Mezzo" is the latest entry in a rapidly growing genre, that of the cute and cutesy schoolgirl-types wielding an amazing arsenal of guns as well as some super-human action abilities. In this case, the cute young lady is Shaolin expert and Bruce Lee fan Suzuki Mikura, resplendent in her skin-tight orange jumpsuit and Colt GM.
Coming from the film "Mezzo Forte," creator Yasuomi Umetsu brings back the DSA (Danger Service Agency), an action-force for hire, supplying their services to anyone willing to pay, consisting of punk-haired techno-geek Harada Tomohisa, ageing ex-cop and leader Kurokawa Kenichi, and the aforementioned "girl with gun" Suzuki Mikura. A possible long-term new member of the cast is found in Elementary school student Asami, a shy girl who is being bullied by her classmates, but winds up in the middle of some DSA action.
"Mezzo" is long on action, and short on plot. This is clearly an action series, with dynamic fighting scenes, slow motion and reality-defying leaps and bullet dodging. Mikura has no problem throwing the hapless Asami out of the window of a five story building, sliding down the elevator shaft and then catching Asami back outside. All in a days work! This first series shows the team being hired by vengeance-seeking ghost and a sexy weather girl in basic one-shot adventures, but these are really just McGuffin cases, like transporting a stereotypical suitcase full of "something everyone wants" that serve little purpose other than to get the team in action.
The TV series "Mezzo" is much more toned down than the film "Mezzo Forte." There is no sex or nudity, very little fan service, and the violence is relatively non-graphic. Yasuomi Umetsu must have found these elements distracting and unnecessary. It is a bit of a surprise to see such a "clean" series after "Kite" and "Mezzo Forte."
Good for fans of stunning action, great character design and familiar simple plots. I liked it!
on June 26, 2005
Mikura and her partners run DSA - which stands for Danger Service Agency - who do almost anything dangerous for the right amount of cash. While there is a lot of action, and fan service, the artwork seems a tad choppy or too still, like there was a low cell count during much of the episodes. Also, some of the plot lines, like the one about aliens, were lame. The last two out of the five episodes DID seem to have a better, strong, story - maybe because they used two episodes to tell the story from different points of view? The two-episode story also used Mezzo's background, from the OVA, and seemed a tad touching at times.
Extras, like the opening/closing animation, ADV previews and production sketches were nice, but even after the first five action-packed episodes the whole series already feels weak and the disc did not seem worth the money I dished out.
Get it used and only if you're already a big fan of Mezzo Forte/Kite anime. Suggested for 15 and up.