New Dominion Tank Police: Hilarity with Heart

Ok, maybe this isn’t technically a mech show. But hey, it has people piloting machinery of some kind. Close enough, right? Fine, fine. This is totally something that I chose to watch because it was another adaption of a Shirow Masamune work and I’ve been insanely curious about it for a while. For those of you not in the know, Shirow Masamune is well known as the creator of the source material behind Ghost in the Shell and Appleseed. Ghost in the Shell is one of my favorite anime franchises EVER and Appleseed is my single biggest guilty pleasure watch ever. (I should mention Ghost Hunt here too, but that doesn’t support my point as much as those other two in this matter). It seemed only natural that I would want to watch this one too. I’m glad I was finally able to watch this ova series, because I had a blast of a time. It’s maybe a little too surface level, but it’s amazing from a pure 90’s cheese entertainment standpoint.

The concept behind this series is rather simple. New Dominion Tank Police is obviously centered around a Tank Police unit. A unit known for causing a large amount damage around the city, called New Port, that they are trying to protect during different police cases. It’s about a tank unit full of unique individuals and hot-headed personalities that I am surprised haven’t been fired at all yet. It’s very Patlabor-like, which made me fall in love with this show the second I saw it from the opening scene. If you don’t love tanks being driven by hot headed female characters driven into buildings to chase after criminals, then this series might not be you. Back on topic, the plot revolves around stopping a crime lord who wants to make more money through the use of spider tanks (a very Shirow Masamune thing as well).

You could automatically tell that this New Dominion Tank Police has Shirow Masamune backstory material behind it just by it’s character set ups. Tell me if this sounds familiar to any of you. The protagonist of this series, Leone, is a female police officer in a mostly male police unit. (I say mostly here because there are other female police officers here as well, but they aren’t on the front lines). Sadly, that’s about it for characterization. Leone is given an episode to give her a backstory, but all that is in service of the plot. Otherwise, she is just a hot-blooded police officer who is joined by her ever-loyal partner Al. Then there is Brenten, the muscle-bound Freddy Mercury guy who is the captain of the police unit and is an excellent shot and hates paper work, the Police Chief whose name is Police Chief, the smart guy with glasses called Megane, and I think you get the point. New Dominion characters aren’t layered at all, but they are entertaining and work better together in a family sort of way. That’s fine by me. This is a six-episode series after all. If this series was longer then that, this would be a huge problem.

Besides the hilarity and insanity, the main story of this for me is the animation and art style. All of it is very 90’s, which is truly my favorite aesthetic when it comes to anime. The main reason behind this is that it’s so expressive. Everything is expressive. If you have seen the art style behind series like Irresponsible Captain Tylor, then you might know what I’m talking about. The great facial expressions and personalities put on display on each character are one thing, but then there are the inanimate objects. When these inanimate objects move, they give off the personality like they are alive. Not even some of the most well animated series can do that these days unless they go the experimental route like Mob Psycho 100 and Flip Flappers.

That’s about really. New Dominion Tank Police is a short series that doesn’t have a lot of material behind it to write a full-length review. It’s only six episodes after all and it’s more surface level fun than anything else. Still, the ride was great. I waited a week between episode five and six, because I didn’t want the experience to end. It was that much fun, everyone. It’s 90’s Cheese that I don’t get to watch very often and a nice break from watching one mech show after another. I might need to find more Dominion works, because I know that this one is one of many OVA adaptions of Dominion that are out there. Let’s see how that all works. Also, please give this watch. It won’t take up a lot of your time and it’s a very cheap buy.


Next week, Mecha March ends with a review of Fullmetal Panic Season 1. How did this month go by so quickly?

(This Featured Image came from a google search. I do not own this image at all).

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  1. I have been meaning to get into this type of show, well a lot of classic shows to kind of get myself kickstarted back into the groove of watching anime. From what you described here this seems like one to put on the list. If it is at all like the type of feeling I got from Gunsmith Cats then I am perfectly fine.

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