This is a show about FIGHTER JETS and the bros who fly them. Expect to see lots of nasty enemy Migs getting blown the fuck out of the sky, hot blooded dogfighting, and general bellyaching from the Japanese main character (Kazama Shin) 'woe is me, I have to fly awesome jets, shoot down opponents, and get paid for it... why can't I go home to a woman who has probably forgotten me by now anyways? *bawww!*'
Well, he's there against his will, so that goes a long way towards explaining it.
There are two (animated) parts to this manga-based tale:
The OVA series (1985)Edit
These are dated, but okay. They actually follow the later part of the story from the manga where Kazama resolves the basic conflict of the story. It's best to watch these after seeing the TV show, or just not at all, because they're nothing great. One of the interesting bits is the early attempt at product placement by "Coke."
IT'S AN OVA ABOUT MANLY MERCENARIES DOING MANLY THINGS.
The TV series (2004)Edit
If you want hotblooded fighter action with awesome airplanes, this is the anime for you. Without this series Area 88 would not deserve a spot on the recommendation list at all. Expect the same basic premise as the OVA's, but there's no conclusion to Shin's dilemna here. But that really doesn't matter because -Oh SHI- IS THAT A B-1 RENDERED IN GLORIOUS DIGITAL 3D? See, this is a series about -WAIT, WAS THAT A SAAB DRAKEN MAKING A CAMEO? You watch the episodes and the story slowly progresses towards -A HARRIER IS BEING USED AS A MOBILE SAM SITE? AWESOME!
You get the point. This show is about masturbating to sexy airplanes. If you like sexy airplanes, you'll enjoy it. If not, don't bother watching.
IT'S A SHOW ABOUT MANLY MERCENARIES DOING MANLY THINGS.
IT'S ABOUT A JAPANESE PILOT TRICKED INTO SIGNING A MERCENARY CONTRACT, HIS SO-CALLED "FRIEND" WHO'S A TOTAL CUNT, HIS WAIFU WHO TRIES TO GET HIM OUT OF AREA 88, BRO MERCENARIES BEING BRO MERCENARIES, PLANES, CARRIERS, PLANES, MOUNTAINSIDE BASES, PLANES, LAND CARRIERS, AND PLANES.
THINK "ACE COMBAT: THE MANGA."