A big breasted Japanese girl bouncing around fighting monsters. - The Ancient Dogoo Girl revisited
In thinking about how to write this review, I was really torn on how, exactly, to approach it. On the outset, "The Ancient Dogoo Girl" delivers exactly what was advertised in the promo clip I posted to Youtube, that has been viewed 133,000 times, a big breasted Japanese girl, bouncing around fighting monsters.
Granted, that is the draw of the show, but to my delight, I am happy to report that there is more here than just T&A.
Now, that being said, the folks over at the MBS network know exactly what they have, the very busty 20-year-old Erika Yazawa, running around in a clay bikini, making their male viewers loose their mind, and they don't apologize for it.
They know that people are tuning into their series because of breasts and they go for it, all the way, in the second episode, called "Yōkai: Big Breasts". There is no way to dance around it, its an episode about boobs. The episode starts out with a male teen looking at an adult (non-nude) magazine featuring big-breasted women. One of his male teachers catches him with the magazine, takes it away from him, then runs off to look at it himself.
Needless to say, the monster in the episode is disguised as a busty school teacher who isn't shy about flaunting her cleavage. Oh, and she kills her victims with blades that pop out of her chest.
Pretty much what you would have expected, after seeing the trailer:
Though, I have to give the makers of "The Ancient Dogoo Girl" some credit. They went for the 'boob card' early, and moved on. From that point on, the series more resembles old episodes of "Ultraman" or "Kaimen Rider." Each episode featuring a monster of the week for Yazawa's, Dogu-chan, character to fight.
(More After The Break)
Here is the plot:
By chance, the withdrawn, and socially awkward teenage son of a bumbling archaeologist, named Makoto Sugihara finds a strange breastplate buried in the woods. When he places his palm on the breast plate, its design gets burned into his palm and awakens a girl named Dogu-chan, a hyperactive ykai hunter from the Jomon period. Because he had touched her breastplate, Makoto is now bound to Dogu-chan as she adapts to modern day life, forcing Makoto to go with her as she fights ykai in magic armor along with her animated Dogoo statuette companion Dokigoro while slowly prying Makoto out of his shell, whether he likes it or not.
Here is really where I'm torn. I want to say that "The Ancient Dogoo Girl" is a show aimed at teens, despite all the adult overtones. To be honest, when I was trying to think of a series, outside of Asia, to compare it with, all I could come up with was "The Sarah Jane Adventures" on the BBC.
I know that sounds really weird, but its like you took that show, removed Elizabeth Sladen, and replaced her with a busty woman.
"I know you've got a sonic screwdriver, Doctor, and it really comes in handy with fighting aliens, but I prefer to use these." That's when she opens up her blouse and exposes her cleavage.
A perfect analogy? No, but in my warped mind, that's what I came up with.
The other show that seemed to fit was "Xena Warrior Princess". The show seems to share the same campy flare, and though it features a lot a sexy women in tight leather, there is a very interesting story there.
That really is the point, once you get past the cleavage, you begin to understand that "The Ancient Dogoo Girl", really is a lampoon of Japanese society that even takes time to make fun of itself from time to time.
For anyone who has spent a lot of time watching Japanese cinema, and television, this becomes very evident from the start. For anyone who hasn't, the series would undoubtedly come off as a silly nonsensical affair.
Japanese pop-culture has been full of big-breasted heroines for decades. Just look at "Cutie Honey" for example. Manga, Anime, movies and TV shows, have been a haven for such 'boob worship', especially of late. "Dogoo Girl", in many ways, parodies many of these past icons.
In fact, Dogu-chan, is in many ways a direct spoof of "Cutie Honey."
She is vey sexy, but she is completely oblivious to it, like Honey. Though unlike her, Dogu-chan does notice the guys gawking at her. Her reply, "What?.....these?......they are for feeding young children.....what is the big deal?"
I honestly believe that while watching this series, I began to actually over-think things. I was left with thoughts of just to whom the show was marketed. It is so obviously a show for young adults, most of the main characters are in High School. A lot of the action revolves around the school, and many of the themes relate to teenage life and feelings.
But, the show centers around a 10,000 year old girl who uses her breasts to fight monsters?
Is this sort of thing okay in Japan? I certainly wouldn't let my fifteen year old watch it. Would a parent in Japan let theirs?
So many questions, I guess that I'm really trying to over-think this way too much.
As is the case in many Japanese movies, or series, the shows male lead, the shy Makoto Sugihara, played by Masataka Kubota, is ultimately terrified by Dogu-chan's sexuality. Ultimately preferring the company of fellow school-mate Kimika Shishido (Rina Kirishima), who is the exact opposite of the busty hero. Preferring brains to boobs, if you will.
This, of course, leads to a love triangle as the series goes forward. Dogu-chan, initially views Makoto as a servant, but discovers that she has feelings for him as he focuses his attention towards Kimika.
Nothing like a jealous super-hero, though the two young ladies butt heads, they ultimately come together to save Makoto from a pair of gothic cannibal girls.
As a hero, Dogu-chan, is a very interesting mix of almost cliche Anime and manga characters, who gets her power from her ever present companion, Dokigoro, who is an ancient Japanese clay idol who has an internal computer that can identify enemy yōkai (ogre or ghost) monsters.
In times of trouble, Dokigoro breaks apart to form Dogu-Chan's combat armour, consisting of a breast-plate that fires energy weapons and a wrist mounted device that she can insert any object into to modify. Example, if Dogo-Chan were to insert of photo of an arrow into it, it would shoot arrows, if she put a picture of a tomato into it, it would shoot tomatoes. You get the idea.
Oh, and check this out. The reason for Dogu-Chan's ample breasts, every time a yōkai is defeated it's energy is broken down and stored there.
The more monsters she kills, the bigger her chest gets.
Oh, and lets not forget the monsters. As is the case with most tokusatsu series, there are plenty of interesting bad guys for Dogu-Chan to go up a cup size fighting. Ranging from human-fish hybrids who feed on human emotions, a man possessed by a bicycle, ghosts, school girls who transform into animals plus a a pair of demons who are mother and daughter.
Dogu-Chan actually sparred the mother and daughter so that they could work out their relationship.
So, is "The Ancient Dogoo Girl" a teen show? An adult show? Both?
I still don't know, but I can say this, it's a a fun show, that certainly would appeal to fans of anime and shows like "Ultraman".
It also certainly will appeal to horny guys who like cute Japanese girls with big boobs.
Is it for everyone? No, like I mentioned before, a newbie to this genre, or Japanese forms of entertainment would certainly be lost and confused with what they are watching.
Ultimately, "The Ancient Dogoo Girl" is a lot of fun. It's camp, its parody and it's in your face, boobs, boobs, boobs. Which, I don't think any of the guys out there will complain about.