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Oldtaku no Radio # 009 – R.O.D. (2001) OVA

Produced waaaaaaay back in 2001, R.O.D. (Read or Die), directed by Koji Masunari, revolves around special agent Yomiko Readman (a.k.a. “The Paper”) and her allies at the British Library as they try to obtain and protect a book that, in the wrong hands, could lead to the end of all human life on Earth. This OVA is, despite only being sixteen years old, a classic among classics…but why? Is it the pulpy presentation of the protagonists’ (and antagonists’) superpowers? the magical realism of their daring-do? the dreaded pirate moé? Listen to Jared and Ink as they banter about and stumble upon what makes this bookworm’s tale-turned-spy thriller so impactful.

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Runtime: 1 hr, 17 min

Show Notes

  • Opening Song: “Through the Glass” by Kaz Mirblouk
  • 00:50 – /Corny Sketch & Intros.
  • 01:30 – An Oldtaku no Radio first: real nostalgia? (The feels!)
  • 02:30 – How our memories failed us. (Forgotten undertones & scenes.)
  • 04:22 – Ink mispronounces endear as “endow.”
  • 05:10 – Plot(-holed) fluidity and devices.
  • 09:40 – Plot structure.
  • 14:08 – Someone steps on Jared’s tail.
  • 15:25 – Pulpy aspects.
  • 15:54 – Ink mispronounces trumpet as “sax.”
  • 17:56 – Animation, character/mechanical design quality.
  • 24:22 – Is Agent Paper a protagonist with which current audiences can sympathize?
  • 26:58 – Proto-moé? (Girls with bandages are ADORBS.)
  • 32:45 – SPOILERS!
  • “Hand-wavy bullsh*t”
  • Defining powers via animation as opposed to over-explanation
  • Anti-climactic villains and clumsily constructed allies.
  • Too distracting/charming for analysis?!
  • Nomenclature rant.
  • Problematic transitions.
  • Hooray for older characters! (Classrooms be damned.)
  • Movin’ pictures r purty (and gritty).
  • Disparity of capability as interest investment.
  • 61:40 – Twitter questions.
  • Ending Song: “Money 1973” by NO FUTURE
  • Trivia: Before its reboot, the Ani-Gamers podcast used a cut from the R.O.D. theme as its intro.
  • Twitter: Ani-Gamers, Oldtaku no RadioInk, Jared
  • Ink also writes for Otaku USA Magazine and The Fandom Post.
  • Jared also writes for The Electrum Edition and Wave Motion Cannon.
    • Ink's profile

      Ink contributes his own pieces and edits those of others pertaining to anime, manga, and games. His reviews and analyses have also appeared in the pages of Otaku USA as well as online over at The Fandom Post and Taiiku Podcast.

    • Jared Nelson's profile

      Jared discovered anime in the early 1990s through stacks of third-hand fandubs and Streamline Pictures tapes. By the tender age of 16, he was humming Macross 7 songs in art class, dreaming of Asuka Langley and hanging Rurouni Kenshin posters on his wall. A few years later he moved to Japan where he worked as an ALT (assistant language teacher) in Ibaraki and Fukuoka Prefectures. While he returned home with a deep appreciation for Japan, its culture, and its public transit system, Jared fell out of anime fandom and only returned in 2010. A self-proclaimed 3rd-level bard, Jared enjoys tabletop gaming and game design, video gaming, giant robots, history, comics, and most recently manga. He is also eternally late to the party.

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