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Virgin Fleet
Reviewer: Rowena Lim Lei 10/24/2001

Synopsis:
Fifteen years ago, the Virgin Fleet caused a miracle which brought the long war to a ceasefire. This time, the military is planning to recruit 36 virgins to once again form the Virgin Fleet, so that Japan can gain the upper hand in case the ceasefire collapses. Enter a young girl named Shiokaze. She has her life more or less planned out. After she graduates from the prestigious Nakano Naval Girls' Academy, she'll marry her childhood sweetheart Mao and settle down. But Shiokaze has something special... for she possesses the highest level of "virgin energy" among all the students. As the name implies, "virgin energy" is a power that untouched maidens can manipulate. With it, virgins can accomplish great feats that are otherwise impossible. As Shiokaze's abilities become apparent, she is chosen to participate in a test to see if she is qualified to be a part of the Virgin Fleet... much to Mao's chagrin. What does the future hold for Shiokaze? For Mao? For all of Japan?

Review:
Virgin Fleet is an outlandish mix of various elements. The setting is in the 1920's -- reminiscent of the era depicted in "Grave of the Fireflies", albeit minus the realism. The Nakano Naval Girls' Academy not only educates Japan's young ladies, it also helps those who've been blessed with the "virgin energy" harness and control their powers. As a result, those who possess exceptional levels of "virgin energy" are recruited as part of the Virgin Fleet.

Virgin Fleet starts off as something of a comedy. Shiokaze is your typical anime heroine -- she's cute, funny, and she doesn't get high grades in school. She doesn't seem anything special at first... and all she wants is to graduate, get married, and have a family. But as it turns out, there is more to Shiokaze than meets the eye. As her powers become more manifest, Shiokaze realizes that she wants more out of life. Things get more serious in the later episodes, and life isn't exactly a bed of roses for Shiokaze.

Virgin Fleet is similar to "Sakura Wars" in the respect that almost all the main characters are women -- and the women are generally more empowered than the men. Issues concerning sexism are also tackled, which adds quite a bit of spice to the series. The art and animation are good, and I have no complaints in this department. There's no explicit content, but it's going to be tricky explaining about the whole concept of virginity to younger audiences... so I wouldn't recommend showing this to children. Character designs are Moldiver-ish -- looks-wise and personality-wise. Not a bad thing I guess, as there's not an ugly or poorly developed character in both "Moldiver" and Virgin Fleet.

The English dubbing is basically okay. Although Virgin Fleet has things in common with a few other series, it does manage to present something unique (where else can you hear schoolgirls cry out "It's our duty to our country to protect our virginity!"?). While I would have wanted to see more of Virgin Fleet, the three eps that have been released are pretty satisfying. There's room for more, but you won't really be left at a loss. Overall, Virgin Fleet is an interesting series that's well worth checking out. Just make sure you don't have an aversion to girl power.

Miscellanies:
I don't know if there are any more episodes aside from the three that have been released.

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Virgin Fleet
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Review Title:
Virgin Fleet
Alternative Titles:
Seishoujo Kantai Virgin Fleet
Type:
OVA
Episodes:
3
Duration:
90 Minutes
General Rating:
4 out of 5 stars
Aired:
1998
Suitable For:
Older Children
Genres:
Fantasy, School, Sci-Fi
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