With exams officially over and my birthday no more, I decided to kickback for awhile and enjoy some very well deserved R&R before my next life long mission begins: Summer Job Hunting! Already wanting to take a break from my Urusei Yatsura “Challenge” (at episode 45), You’re Under Arrest was just the series I needed to recharge my batteries and really fun to watch despite only finishing the first season. Just one of many anime titles I am getting out of my current backlog of interest.
To spare you an entire synopsis, You’re Under Arrest is basically an anime series following the misadventures of two traffic female traffic officers: Miyuki Kobayakawa and the new recruit, Natsumi Tsujimoto of the Bokuto Precinct. While these two mainly are the subject of the series, it also follows the other supporting characters and the antics the other two get catch-up in on and off duty. I hate to make comparisons, but I like to think of this series as a slice-of-life/drama/comedy fusion of Miami Guns, which is also a funny and nice series in its own right. The only difference: You’re Under Arrest will probably keep you watching for reason you can not accurately pinpoint – which, is why I am even writing this post to begin with.
As aforementioned, what makes this particular series unique is that mixes and matches so many genres into one over a course of 52 episodes (counting the 4 OVA’s, which acts as pilot and integrated into the series as awhole). In fact, the genre mixture is possibly what gave the series such a nice command of my attention, especially with the cast of characters that spawns from this series. I have seen bunch of oddball series in the past and to date, but this one among many that touts the most bizarre, if not down right eclectic cast of supporting and reoccurring characters. Moderately sizable in number, the various quirks and temperaments the characters bring to the table make the series much easier to digest whether it be Yoriko’s inability to keep her mouth closed long enough before she spreads rumors or other odd characters like “Strike Man” that will annoy you half-death in one episode. Regardless, all the characters have some likeable thread and make up for the many genre layers the show gains.
Aside from the motley cast of crew, You’re Under Arrest also handles itself quite well when comes down to executing episode after episode. After putting up with Urusei Yatsura as much as I have, I thought 52 episodes of this series would be too much for me, but surprisingly, it goes down easy considering how well some of the vignettes are done. This one reason why the slice-of-life genre ties in so well. Coupled with the fact that none of the episodes are largely entwined with one another (expect for a few earlier ones being referenced), you don’t actually have to watch ever single one, but you will not exactly feel inclined to skip many of them if any. I always hated slice-of-life/comedy shows that lacked any sense of continuity or included it to large degree that actually messed the shows performance and ultimately, the enjoyment factor, but doesn’t seem to be an issue here with this one. Some episodes are easier to take than others, but to a sizable degree, most of the episodes are appealing enough and lack the “episodic” feel most people would expect from a series like this one.
I would be remiss if I did not point one or two shortcomings, obviously, the biggest one is the shows bland and stale animation work. Coming from the workshop of Studio Deen and its earlier works, the series animation certainly doesn’t do it any justice as much as I like the artwork. In any case, I did not find the animation to be anything of annoyance rather than just what I called it, a shortcoming. In addition to that, some of the reoccurring gags and traits such as: Yoriko vs Chie, Strike Man, and Ken’s x Miyuki’s romance advancements lose their luster of enjoyment after awhile. I was under the assumption the series would largely be attributed around Miyuki and Natsumi’s relationship as partners, but so far this has been minimal. Not bad to have the cast of characters around and hone into their lives, but hopefully, the second season will focus more on the dynamic duo.
All-in-all, if you liked series like: Miami Guns, Excel Saga, Ah! My Goddess (which actually owes this series some thanks to its Goddess female lead creation), or anything of similar nature, You’re Under Arrest is at best what I can call a “Extremely And Oddly Satisfying” series for those willing to examine it. I would recommend starting with the 1st 4 episodes to see if it wets your whistle and if so, the rest of the series will probably be exactly as you hoped it would be, if not better.