Robotic Notes is a anime I recently completed watching on Hulu. The first few episodes begin as a basic high school situation drama/comedy. Two friends Kaito Yashio and Akiho Senomiya are in the Robot Club. The goal of this two-member club is to complete the construction of a real life Mecha Robot which the original club members, including Akiho’s older sister Misaki, eight years ago. In order to complete the build on this robot before they graduate they need to raise money so Akiho convinces Kaito to enter into a battle of the robots with your typical remote control robot.
At this point, you start thinking, oh here’s the plot the series will be about all the antics of these two trying to round up new members and funds to build their Mecha, despite the woes of the principle, but that’s where you’re wrong. Not long after one plot line is established a new one unfolds.
Now Kaito, has no real fondness for the robot club but being best friends with Akiho he helps out, but mostly he just feels bad because she really is only doing this to please her older sister, who since graduating high school eight years ago has made no communications with Akiho, making her feel as if she has been rejected by her. Okay so there is now some drama about their situation, but wait there’s more.
The series takes place in the future, where everyone owns a device similar to a smartphone. This device takes pictures, surfs the web, makes calls and plays games. The other thing about this device is that there is only one manufacturer so imagine if Apple had a monopoly on smart phones and everyone had to have one, so at that point, everyone has an iPhone, sort of speak. Katio’s biggest fetish is to play a robot fighting game called Kill-Ballad on this so-called device. The game is based on an anime series named Gunvarrel, which Akiho idolized until it went off the air about eight years ago. What we find out now is that Katio is so good at playing the game, because when his adrenaline is high he can basically stop time, for a few seconds, just enough to get out of harm’s way and win the game. I also revealed that Akiho has the reverse ability, where time speeds up for her by a few seconds, this is all due to a freak phenomenon, wait for it, yes eight years ago which the two were involved in. So, now your thinking, okay what is this phenomenon and why won’t Akiho’s sister talk to her.
Before those questions are answered, Katio meets Airi Yukifune a hologram who invades his mobile device, Airi is a so-called weather app developed by inventor Kimijima before his death. But who is Kimijima, and why did Airi suddenly show up? Katio aks Airi this very question only to find that Kimijima wrote a top secret report supposedly exposing Committee of 300 (sort of a government organization) and their propaganda regarding solar storms. Airi explains that Katio must now complete a series of tasks in order to uncover the reports.
Okay now the series really takes a shift, as it begins to focus more on Katio and is more of a mystery, then suddenly Frau Koujiro arrives as a transfer student. Frau is the teenage creator of the game Kill-Ballad and the daughter of the director of Gunvarrel. At first it seems this text-obsessed hacker is only interested in having Katio (as a top Kill-Ballad) player help her track down only cheaters, but we soon learn that she only created the game to keep the series of Gunvarrel alive after it abruptly ended, with the bloody murder of the entire staff, all except for the director (her mother) who disappeared. Of course this all happened eight years ago.We now see an eight year pattern, and just as Katio starts to uncover the Kimijima reports Misaki (Akiho’s sister) warns him not to get involved.
While all this mystery is going underway, Akiho is able to recruit two other members into the club and even get a sponsor from a local Candy Manufacture and the NASA type organization that want to build such a Mecha for the big future tech convention.
So, now we have sort of two stories going, the mystery of the Kimijima reports and the high school students and their Mecha robot, but just as you start to believe that the reports will tie everything back together and reveal that Misaki was only trying to protect her sister, things get really weird.
I don’t want to give the end away, but the last few episodes start having you go, what? There are more coverups, treats, and even murder. The whole ending wrap up is completely ridiculous and leaves you wishing that Katio just listened to everyone and never went after those reports in the first place. (Despite all that, there is a sorta happy ending).
Again the series isn’t bad but just gets a little confusing. I think I would have liked it better as just a high school club and their Mecha robot, but oh well. It’s still not a bad watch and kind of interesting.