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Manga: Airmaster
The last thing you saw before you blacked out.

The series follows Maki, a six-foot tall schoolgirl. She formerly trained with her mother as a competitive gymnast, but due to her size she could no longer partake in it. In order to gain the same thrill she once had while competing, Maki turns to street-fighting.

A Seinen manga series written by Yokusaru Shibata that was then made into a 27 episode anime. The anime is notable for its lead being a extremely tall, muscular redheaded schoolgirl, and actually animating most of its scuffles, to the point that stuff like story, plot or motivation comes second place to the fighting. The unusual art style borrows a lot from the 70s, which fans might like or dislike depending on their preferences.


This series provides examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Julietta for Maki, and Nagato for Kinjiro; they're both tall, hyper-obsessive, dangerous fighters... and they're both out of their friggin' gourds.
  • Action Girl: Maki, Sakiyama Kaori and quite a number of minor characters.
  • Affectionate Parody: Due to a lot of over the top violence, hilariously long-winded speeches about fighting and other exaggerations, many fans view the series as a homage to other series of the same genre.
  • Amazon Chaser / Guys Want Redheads: Sakamoto Julietta and many other male cast members find Maki attractive because of her beauty, fighting ability or often times both.
  • Attempted Rape: Julietta, on Maki; he only gets as far as he does because Maki is stupefied at the idea of Julietta being attracted to her. When she gets her head together, she beats him stupid and runs out screaming. ...and then has to come back for her sneakers, still screaming.
  • Balloon Belly: Renge in episodes 3, 24 and 26.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted, but you could make a case for the prettier characters receiving less damage. Mind you, wannabe model Sakiyama Kaori is frequently beaten into hamburger by Maki.
  • Blood Knight: Maki, Lucha Master and several other characters just about every major martial artist. Testing oneself against strong opponents seems to be the sole purpose of entering the Fukamichi Rankings tournament for most of the major contenders.
  • Boobs of Steel: Maki's pretty busty.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Renge and, to a lesser extent, Miori.
  • Buxom Is Better: Much to the dismay of Mina, whose Gag Boobs get her kidnapped by a gang of horny thugs. She does occasionally benefit from it, though; they're big enough to absorb the impact of falling off a building and she can do the best impression of a Holstein in all of anime.
  • Can't Catch Up: Sakiyama Kaori. While her progress is amazing, the gap between her and Maki always remains roughly the same.
  • Catapult Nightmare
  • Cat Fight: Sometimes played with, but mostly subverted. Fights betwen two girls in Air Master tend to be, if anything, much more brutal and frightening than average, with Maki's battle against Minaguchi Yuki being the prime example.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Mina.
  • Combat Parkour: Maki; in her past she was a world-class gymnast. Unlike most instances of this trope, however, at least once it definitely loses a fight for her — after an astonishing spinning, flipping thing which basically whips her martial artist father, she sticks the landing by reflex. He takes advantage of that moment to get her in a lock and take the victory.
  • Damsel in Distress: Mina. She always seems to be getting kidnapped or in the middle of a very bad situation.
  • Dark-Skinned Redhead: Yuu.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: Far too many street fighters seem to become Maki's friends after she beats them up. Bonus points go to Julietta who received one of the most physically painful "Let's be friends" speeches ever witnessed.
  • Determinator
  • Dogged Nice Guy: For a given value of "nice", anyway. No matter how many walls Maki kicks him through, Julietta gets back up and keeps proposing to her.
    • Later on, he has every major bone broken in his body. Even this does not stop him.
    • Played for drama. After a long day, Maki enters a room to find Julietta in inside waiting for her. He proceeds to disrobe, pins her to the ground, and rips her clothes off. Maki fearfully struggles against him the whole time, while he shrugs off every blow. Right before he can complete the act of raping her, she manages to drop him with a kick below the belt.
  • Drunken Master: Shinnosuke.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Maki. Because every other character, including a couple of girls, seem to be chasing after her.
  • Even the Guys Want Him: Kinjiro.
  • Fanservice: Played with. There are some Panty Shots but not a gratuitous amount (as is usually found in similar series), and only at logical times.
  • Fighting Series
  • Fight Unscene
  • Full-Name Basis: You must say Sakiyama Kaori's full name.
  • Gag Boobs: Also Mina.
  • Gecko Ending: The anime finished three years before the manga. Last episode much?
  • Gender-Blender Name: Sakamoto Julietta is a man. A very clingy, determined man.
  • Gonk: Renge, and arguably, much of the art style; the manga is QUALITY.
  • Handicapped Badass: Sakiyama Kaori is revealed to be this, being totally deaf in one ear due to a brutal beating she suffered at the hands of an Alpha Bitch when she was younger.
  • Huge Schoolgirl: Maki, doubling as the Unusually Uninteresting Sight since no one ever comments on it.
    • While this is perhaps a case of relative values - Maki's height has been variously given as 5'10" to 6', which is huge for Japan for a girl and mildly tall in European countries - everyone else in the series must be really short, as most characters are at about eye-level with Maki's chest.
  • Idiot Hero: Maki
  • I Know Madden Kombat
  • Instant Awesome, Just Add Ninja: Maki faces off with a ninja.
  • Jerk Ass: Yuu causes quite a bit of trouble for her friends — especially Mina — for no apparent reason other than seeing them embarrassed.
  • Kick Chick: Maki.
  • Lady of War: Maki, again. Subverted actually inside battles yes but outside not so much.
  • Large Ham: "Sakiyama Kaori!"
  • Lightning Bruiser
  • Martial Arts Do Not Work That Way
  • Masked Luchador: Lucha Master.
    • Maki temporarily after filling in for that girl she Curb Stomped
  • Morality Pet: Sakiyama Kaori does like Renge and calls her "Bambino."
    • She's more of a pet for Maki, though. If not for her, Maki would have maimed or even killed Sakiyama, when the latter chose a really bad moment to piss Maki off.
  • No Export for You: Only four volumes of the anime (out of a presumed six or seven) were released in North America. It was later released in its entirety on Playstation Network - without subtitles. It did, however, get a Filipino dub and premiered at a local station.
  • Panty Fighter: Downplayed but still noticeable.
  • Panty Shot: Slightly subverted, as Maki has rather plain boring underpants, and the real reason we see them is she's usually jumping around in her school uniform and about to lay down an awesome beatdown.
    • This troper has actually counted the ratio of panty shot to unused panty shot opportunity in the pilot. For the nature of the show, it is extremely restrained, using less than half of possible panty shot chances (in fact, this was a few years ago so I can't remember the exact figure, but I am certain it was more like only a third. But I'm erring on the side of caution here).
    • It's even used as a harbinger of someone's impending doom — the camera looks up and the sun is blotted out by Maki's skirt flaring, exposing her underpants and incidentally her legs and feet, heading straight for them. As one YouTube comment put it: "Warning. 6-foot schoolgirl approaching. Warning. Pwnage imminent."
    • It's notable in that most panty shots are framed to be a sort of upskirt-peek manifestation of Male Gaze, with the audience getting to sneak a look at something they normally wouldn't be allowed to see. Maki's underwear are just a part of her clothes, and being accustomed to doing these things in a leotard, she doesn't act as if it's immodest to let her skirt flare in combat and the 'camera' doesn't objectify her.
  • Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs
  • Red-Headed Hero: Maki.
  • Schoolgirl Lesbians: Mina is hopelessly in love with Maki, who doesn't quite know how to react, but doesn't seem to mind Mina holding onto her arm while they're walking.
  • She's Got Legs: Maki.
  • Shrinking Violet: Mina, though one can hardly blame her with all the embarrassment Yuu puts her through.
  • Stalker with a Crush: Julietta and Nagato both qualify as this.
  • Statuesque Stunner: Maki herself.
  • Tournament Arc
  • Uh-Oh Eyes: Maki's motiontrail eyes.
  • Unknown Rival: Sakiyama Kaori (you have to say the full name).
    • Although this is subverted by the end of anime.
  • Unstoppable Rage — almost. Sakiyama Kaori's battle technique seems to come purely from her frustration at life. Despite little training, this is sufficient to take out most people except for Maki.
    • She's mentioned she does Tai Chi Quan, though, so there's clearly some training there. She also learns one superhuman technique from a high-ranking martial artist.
  • Wolverine Claws: Sakiyama Kaori and Minaguchi Yuki. Although for the latter long, sharp nails serve to make her arm stabs more deadly, rather than for usual clawing.
  • Yaoi Guys: Kinjiro and Nagato, but mostly just Nagato.

AIKISeinenAi Yori Aoshi
Air GearCreator/Toei AnimationAshita no Nadja
Witch Hunter RobinCreator/FU NimationBlack★Rock Shooter
Air GearMangaAi Ore! Love Me!
Air GearAnimeAishiteruze Baby

alternative title(s): Airmaster; Airmaster
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