Several years into the 21st century, technology has advanced to the point where people can customize dolls called "angels" and have them fight using telepathy. A young girl named Misaki is sent to Tokyo to live with her aunt. On her way out of the station, she sees Angelic Layer on TV. Angelic Layer is an arena where people pit their angels against each other. The angels are controlled by their owners using a headset. Misaki is shocked by the outcome of the battles. Before she can even blink, a loveable lech named Icchan pops up and teaches Misaki about Angelic Layer. And so Misaki starts training to be a great Angelic Layer combatant herself!
First off, Clamp fans will be happy to know that this is one of the group's more recent works. While the artwork isn't as awe-inspiring as some of their other creations, Angelic Layer is undoubtedly one very entertaining anime. The dolls look especially good, with their uniquely designed suits and funky hair styles -- it's just what Clamp fans are dying to see! Misaki's training progresses at a believable pace, but it's not boring to watch. Don't worry; it's not at all like Pokemon (with the battle arenas, etc.). AL is actually a somewhat short series. The Japanese vocal cast is excellent -- the voices suit the characters nicely. This anime can be viewed by everyone -- there's no nudity, sex, blood, nor foul language. The action consists of nothing but little fights between dolls. The soundtrack is also something to look forward to; both the opening and ending themes are great and the background music fits everything well. My mother was nice enough to take my sister and I downtown to an anime convention, and so she got to watch a few eps with us. I laughed my head off when they stopped after a few episodes, and she yelled "What? They're just going to leave it at that!?". Apparently this title is okay for non-anime fans as well...
Oddly enough, this title shares a number of similarities with Magic Knight Rayearth, and Cardcaptor Sakura, such as:
Icchan's last name is Mihara, like Chiharu Mihara from CCS.
Misaki's doll is named "Hikaru", and looks like the Hikaru from MKR minus the braid.
In CCS, Sakura's best friend is Tomoyo. In AL, one of Misaki's friends is named Tamayo.