Mezzo Forte is an anime written and directed Yasuomi Umetsu, the director of Kite. As with Kite, Mezzo Forte was released in two versions: an abridged version with the explicit scenes removed, and an uncensored Director's Cut. The OVA was originally released in 1998 by studio Green Bunny and was later licensed for release in North America by the Media Blasters labels Anime Works and Kitty Media. A television series that followed from the events of Mezzo Forte called Mezzo DSA was later released in 2003.
The Danger Service Agency is a small-time group of mercenary con artists, operating in Japan in the not so distant future. The DSA consists of three members: Action Girl and weapons specialist Mikura, the tech-savvy Harada, and the balding ex-cop and nominal group leader, Kurokawa. Together, the trio will take on just about any job as long as the pay is right. And, at least for Mikura, the more reckless the request is, the better.
The DSA get in over their heads, however, when they are hired to kidnap Momokichi Momoi, the owner of the Peach Twisters baseball team. Unbeknownst to the DSA, Momoi just so happens to also be one of the city's most powerful mob bosses, a useful bit of information that they, unfortunately, do not learn about until after they grab him. Panicked, the group decides that they should cut their losses by returning the mob boss and leaving the country. This plan has two major problems, however: they were identified by the target's bodyguards during the kidnapping, and apparently Momoi didn't make it out alive.
Now with the mob hot on their tail, Mikura and crew must find a way to get out of the situation with their lives intact. A task made all the more difficult by the involvement of their mysterious client, a pair of vengeful street thugs, and Momoi's Cute and Psycho daughter Momomi. What exactly did their client hope to gain from all of this? And what is the nature of the mysterious connection felt between Momomi and Mikura?
Not to be confused with the Icelandic musical group, Mezzoforte.
This page is for the censored version only.
This anime contains examples of:
- Anime Hair: Harada, sort of. While his hairstyle is pretty wild, think Pinhead and you're halfway there, it's hardly impossible.
- Batter Up!: When the pitcher of the Peach Twisters costs the team the game, Momokichi responds by beating him nearly to death with a baseball bat. After Momomi finishes him off, they then bury him underneath the pitcher's mound.
- Call-Back: There are a couple of direct references to the events of Mezzo Forte in the anime.
- The Can Kicked Him: The DSA sedate and abduct Momoi through a false panel in the ceiling above his bathroom stall. He does not survive the ensuing battle between his kidnappers and bodyguards.
- The Cameo: Sawa from Kite walks by Kurokawa's Volkswagen while he chats up a cop through the window. She has no dialogue and pauses just long enough to get a good look at her.
- Cannot Spit It Out: Harada, towards Mikura.
- Cool Car: Kurokawa's yellow (changed to pink in DSA), vintage, Volkswagen Beetle. It seems to be the DSA's main mose of transport.
- Dirty Cop: Kurokawa's old police department, as well as the old guy himself. After taking the fall for a big foul-up, Kurokawa made a killing with his tell-all book.
- Drives Like Crazy: Kurokawa's driving isn't just crazy, it's insane. Across bowling alleys, in canals, up small staircases, the car on its freaking side.
- Evil Redhead: Momomi.
- Fingore: Kurokawa gets a fingernail pried off by mobsters attempting to find out where their boss is being held.
- Frozen Dinner of Loneliness: A Japanese meteorologist went home to her small apartment and cried tears into her instant dinner. The purpose of the scene was to show how sad and alone she was, and the plot involved her meeting some guy and falling in love.
- Gadgeteer Genius: Harada's primary function within the group.
- Girls with Guns: Mikura and Momomi.
- Gorn: While the action scenes aren't quite as gory as those seen in Kite, this series doesn't pull any punches.
- Gratuitous Italian: It's all there in the title. And seemingly bears no significance to the story, setting, or characters at all.
- Groin Attack:
- Mikura delivers a particularly wince-worthy one to one of Momoi's goons, and just to emphasize it, he drops a bowling ball on his own head immediately after.
- In the first episode of the anime, Mikura nails a Black Scissors stooge in the jewels. Cut away to a scene of two crystalline spheres being shattered. Yikes.
- Hero-Worshipper: Asami in the anime, to Mikura.
- Karmic Rape: The two thugs from the first episode make a deal with Momomi in the second in order to get revenge on Mikura this way (which is obviously not actually shown in censored version, but what happens is still blatantly obvious). It turns out they didn't actually rape the real Mikura, but a sex android copy of her.
- Literal Surveillance Bug: A tiny robotic ladybug is used by Harada to drug Momoi's drink. That said, Harada could see his target just fine, since they were at the same bowling alley - the ladybug's POV on his watch was just for convenience.
- Long-Lost Relative: It's suggested that Mikura and Momomi might be half-sisters. This is confirmed in DSA.
- Mafia Princess: Momomi, who even goes so far as to kill any of her father's employees who she feels are underperforming.
- Mission Control: Kurokawa.
- Ms. Fanservice: Mikura and Momomi
- Mundane Made Awesome: Momomi's bowling game with her father.
- Neck Snap: Mikura does this to one of Momoi's goons at the bowling alley. It doesn't kill him and he's seen again later with his neck stuck at an unnatural angle.
- Non-Action Guy: Kurokawa. Harada, too, sort of. He can keep up with Mikura if he really needs to, but it's not really his "thing."
- Patricide: Though it was unintentional, Mikura was still partially responsible for Momokichi's death - and while never stated outright, it's heavily implied that he is actually her father.
- Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: When Mikura warns her opponents with the phrase, "Don't plan on making it to dinner tonight!" or "You won't live long enough to eat dinner!" then somebody's probably in for a world of hurt.
- Sex Bot: A side hustle of Harada's, which the DSA attempt to sell to the two thugs. When the thugs try to double cross them, it turns out that the androids have a self-destruct function. This skillset becomes very handy later on when the DSA have to manufacture robot clones of both Momokichi and Mikura in order to run their ransom scam on Momomi.
- Tamer and Chaster: The two episode OVA featured full, well-animated, sex scenes worthy of an adult rating. However, the television series cuts out the sex, but maintains some of the hardcore violence.
- Theme Naming:
- Momokichi and Momomi Momoi, and the Peach Twisters. "Momo" is Japanese for "peach".
- Bennett the Sage points out that the English equivalent would be naming them "Peach Peacherson and his daughter Peachy Peachman."
- Those Two Guys: The two thugs who tried to double-cross Harada and Mikura in the first episode, and keep trying (and failing) to get revenge on them in the second.
- Trademark Favorite Food: Kurokawa has this thing with noodles. They're practically all he eats. Since Mikura and Harada don't cook, this is all they get to eat too.
- Wham Line: "Unfortunately, I can not pay you the rest of the money. [...] Because Momoi is dead." Cue the dropping of some cans.