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on 15 July 2014
Infinite Stratos is about a 15/16 year old boy called Ichika Orimura who transfers into the IS Academy after one day activating an IS, something males apparently can't do. The Infinite Stratos machines are basically powered exoskeletons, which are armed with various kinds of weaponry and shields. They use these for fighting and practising at the academy.

Ichika Orimura is a somewhat shy and clueless character, he has quite a few female characters showing a strong interest in him, some even showing a sexual interest in him, but like with most harem anime shows, the MC basically freaks out and pushes them away, and this also happens here too.

The anime covers Ichikas day to day life and introduces each of the female cast members, naturally they all love Ichika, but sure enough his childhood friend Houki appears to derail anyones plans to hit on him. Besides the school stuff, there's not much else besides a tournament, and the final mission in the series. It's basically a fun, almost light on plot story that doesn't take a lot of thinking to understand.

I'm basically giving this series 3 stars because I found the dub cringe worth, I just don't like the fake, forced accents. Especially Cecilias, which is a stereo typically bad British accent, I've lived here all my life and have never heard another British person speak like that, it's almost laughable. Charlottes is okay, Houki is okay, it's a typical Monica Rial voice, which rarely changes. Rinin Fan is meant to be Chinese but her voice is typical of Hilary Haag who uses the same voice for most of her roles. It's almost as if they had this idea to give the characters laughably bad accents and then forgot about the rest. Tiffany Grant is the only redeeming one as Laura Bodewig.

I like the show, I do. I don't mind dubs either, I just have to knock a star off for it, it ruins a good show. I would have rated this 4 stars had the dub been decent.

Anyway, we should hear news of Season 3 of IS in the near future, it's a very popular Japanese series that sold very well.
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VINE VOICEon 11 March 2014
The powered exoskeletons known as the Infinite Stratos (or I.S.) are powerful tools capable of increasable feats and have changed the world since their development by the eccentric genius Tabane Shinonono but only women are able to use them. Ichika Orimura, the younger brother of a former I.S. Champion, was therefor as surprised as anyone when he found himself able to operate an I.S. and now he finds himself as the only boy at the Infinite Stratos Academy where the world's best train.

This two disc set includes all twelve episodes of the first season of 'Infinite Stratos', as well as an OVA. The series is relatively entertaining with the standard antics of a harem series coupled with some good action in the form of the I.S. battles. The characters are in the series are all nicely portrayed even if they are somewhat standard for this type of series just with an international element added to the mix (although Ichika himself is clueless even by the standards of harem anime main characters). Of the main female characters, the German Laura Bodewig is probably my favourite, as she is it is very entertaining to watch her character develop as the series progresses, although Ichika's sister Chifuyu is probably my favourite character in the series as a whole with Houki's eccentric sister Tabane following close behind.

The thing I like most about the series is the setting and the I.S. units themselves as they are very interesting and I would have liked to see a lot more of both. The battles in the series are very nice with the finale being very spectacular and enjoyable to watch. The comedy in the show is generally quite standard harem series stuff but it is pulled of relatively well, especially during the OVA.

The animation of the series is generally reasonably good, although there were a few places where the CGI of the I.S. units was a little rough but that is only a minor complaint. The DVD includes both English and Japanese versions of the series and while the Japanese one is probably slightly better in my opinion, the English version is generally reasonable. I do appreciate that the English dub cast attempted to give the European characters appropriate accents and while Brittney Karbowski's English accent is passable for Cecilia Alcott (it is quite similar to the one she used for Anya in Negima!) Shannon Emerick's French accent for Charles Dunois and Tiffany Grant's German accent for Laura leave a little to be desired. Other than this, the voices of the English cast suit the characters reasonably well, especially Luci Christian as Chifuyu and Allison Keith as Tabane.

The set also includes a few extras including commentaries by the Japanese cast and a couple of features in the form of Radio I.S. and Behind the Scenes (both subtitle only).

Based on a series of light novels, 'Infinite Stratos' is quite entertaining and is probably one of the better harem series that I have watched recently. A second season of 'Infinite Stratos' was shown in the Autumn 2013 season but I felt it wasn't quite as good as this one. There is has also been an OVA announced for some time in 2014.

Overall I feel that this set deserves a high four stars.
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on 6 July 2014
There are very few good Harem Anime's out there; most of the time it gets dull and boring because the situation is repeated constantly, or the jokes just stop being funny. Infinite Stratos is one Harem series that I can say without a doubt is one of the best I've seen, and in terms of hilarity it rivals that of Baka and Test. Except there's more plot to it than Baka and Test.

Our story begins in the future with the hero of the series, Ichika Orimura, finding out that he can pilot an armored suit called an I.S. (Infinite Stratos), so he goes to this academy that teaches people how to use the I.S. And thus events start to unfold as the series goes on. Oh, did I forget to mention that the only people that can pilot an I.S are females, and Ichika is the only man in the entire world that can pilot it. The only thing this series now needs is they're equivalent of the FFF Inquisition, from Baka and Test, to chase Ichika around the academy to make this even funnier than it already is.
Anyway, I actually have no problems with the plot. Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that the plot is perfect. It's just that some of the anime cliches in this series makes sense. For example; how many people have found a series where the main character doesn't instantly become the stud of it all for no reason, apart from the fact that he/she is the main character. Just look at Kirito from Sword Art Online; he's surrounded by girls that are interested in him. So, what makes this any different? Ichika is the only guy in the academy. The only one...at all...there is no one else. And that makes sense as to why he'll at some point be surrounded by girls.
So, as far as I can remember there aren't really any bad points in the plot, because it all makes sense with what we learn as the series progresses. There are some things that are a bit ridiculous, but they're so small that you can easily look past it and enjoy the series. Especially since, like Baka and Test, you cant take everything seriously. There are some other small things that aren't explained yet, but since this is based on a series of light novels I can expect that what isn't explained in this season will be explained in future seasons.

I'll skip Ichika since I've already explained enough about him above; the only thing I haven't mentioned is that he is a kind, safe, understanding person. Which also explains why the girls like him. Anyway, we also have Houki Shinonono who is Ichika's childhood best friend, as well as martial arts instructor and helps him learn how to use an I.S. Her character doesn't develop that much until the end of this season, but there is plenty of development between her and Ichika. But I will say now that I do not see her as the main love interest in the series. Don't get me wrong; I like her character, but I think that we've seen enough of the childhood best friend story. That and there's more between Ichika and the other female characters than her.
Next we have Cecilia Alcott who is a British transfer student and thinks very highly of herself. Then we have Huang Lingyin who is the second childhood best friend of Ichika, as well as being a Chinese transfer student. Then there's Chifuyu Orimura who Ichika hasn't seen in a long time, and is his classroom teacher. There are other characters that are worth mentioning, but if I do it'll, kind of, go into the realm of spoilers. So, I might as well not mention them and keep more surprises for people who haven't seen this.

As far as animation goes it doesn't look very special. I'm just going to say that it looks like any other anime with a decent budget. The only other things that stand out is the well done artwork in background, and the brilliant fights with the I.S's. Some people might not like to see CGI in an anime that much. I personally agree with people on that, but I do think that if the CGI doesn't stand out like a swore thumb then that's fine. Take a look at the new Berserk movies; the CGI stands out very much to the point that it is kind of terrible. The CGI in the Evangelion movies doesn't stand out that much, which is good. With this you can tell that some of I.S. scenes are CGI, but it's not that bad. In fact they're well done. You can tell that some parts are CGI, but it doesn't completely stand out and distract you from everything else.

First off the music was pretty good. It serves as decent background noise and does a decent job, but it isn't Bleach or Evangelion music where that definitely does stand out on it's own. Some tracks in this series do stand out, but they're very far and few between.
Now onto the dub. The dub was done by Sentai Filmworks who have provided many other dubs for Anime's, but I can only name a few at this point in time. They provided the dubs for Persona 4 the Animation (I think), as well as providing future dubs for the Familiar of Zero season 2 and 3 (possibly 4), and WataMote. If that's not enough to sway you for the English dub then I'll mention that the ADR Director is none other than Matt Greenfield, the man behind the dub for Neon Genesis Evangelion, or had something to do with the original Evangelion series. I can't quite remember. Anyway, moving on.
We have Josh Grelle (Akihisa in Baka and Test, and Armin in Attack on Titan) who plays the lead character Ichika. Then we have Monica Rial (May in Fullmetal Alchemist Brotherhood, and the new voice of Bulma in Dragon Ball Z Kai and the new movie Battle of Gods) who plays Houki. Brittney Karbowski (Mikasa in A Certain Magical Index, and Black Star in Soul Eater) is Cecilia Alcott, and puts on a decent English accent that suits the character. And finally the legendary voice actress, Tiffany Grant (Asuka in the Evangelion franchise), is Laura Bodewig and she puts on the best German accent I have ever heard. I know Tiffany Grant can speak German, but the accent is very spot-on.

This is a show that portrays a dream that any guy has had at least once in their lives, and that's being the only guy in a school full of girls. The show could have turned out to be crap, but it turned out to be a pretty good show. There's a lot to love with this series, and it is worth looking at.
I give this a recommendation to stream, or rent, either the first few episodes or the whole thing before thinking about buying it, but if you like what you've heard so far and if you like Mech Anime's then I can also recommend a buy. Though I still recommend that people look into it before buying it if they haven't seen it.
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on 25 July 2014
Infinite Stratos is one of those animes that I decided to buy on Amazon, because the product description made the story sound interesting. The idea of females being the dominant gender in the near future, because they are the only ones capable of controlling IS combat machines was an intriguing concept, and I was interested to see what kind of society would be portrayed in a world like that.
I only gave this series 3/5 stars, because whilst it was enjoyable overall, I felt it didn't meet my expectations as much as I thought it would. For instance, the fact that women are more powerful than men in the near future is expressed, but it's not portrayed as often you'd think. In fact, other than the fact that most of the characters are female, there's nothing to suggest too heavily that there's been a major change in society. With the exception of the IS Units, it feels no different to modern-day.
Another thing to mention is the characters. I really enjoy how the main characters are portrayed, and how each of the girls represents a different nation; Japan, China, France, German and Great Britain. However, the series doesn't spend a lot of time getting to know their backstories and most of the time it's just about the girls trying to win over the affections of Ichika (the only male student in their IS academy). Being only 13 episodes long (including one OVA) I knew there wouldn't be a whole lot of time for character development. But things in the series are so fast-paced, it gets to the point where somebody can be a ruthless and aggressive enemy in one episode, and then a friendly and blushing comrade in the next. It almost makes you think, "wow, that was a sudden change of heart?!"
As for the series overall, the main focus is really about Ichika reacting to different girls and their personalities. Half the season is spent introducing new characters, having them get closer to Ichika, and that making the other characters jealous in the process. Also, whilst there is the science-fiction element of the IS Units, they almost feel like unnecessary filler, because there's no real threat that requires their use. Even when some kind of threat does turn up in the series, it doesn't feel world-threatening and it's quickly resolved, so that the focus can return to the relationships of the characters. If the science-fiction elements were removed, and you just had Ichika attending a high school that was mostly attended by girls, then it would still be the same story.
The last thing to mention is the humour. Like many animes, Infinite Stratos deploys 'fan service' to give fans "exactly what they want [to see and hear]". A lot of the jokes are extremely hilarious, but they do occasionally get more and more inappropriate. It's okay to have them on occasion to lighten the mood of things, but doing it too often makes the series rely too heavily on them and it takes away from the story. As far as Infinite Stratos goes, I think they go a little bit overboard.
If you're a fan humour, mecha-anime or harem, then I'd recommend buying this series. It's not the best I've ever seen and you shouldn't expect anything too serious or threatening, but it's definitely something that can appeal to both male and female fans of Japanese animation.
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on 18 June 2014
This anime is a good one for all the action/fan service fans out there. I thoroughly enjoyed watching this anime for 2 reasons.

1. The Story.

The idea of having women control big robo style fighting machines (Infinite Stratos) is an interesting idea for one reason,........most of the time in this type of story, men would usually be the ones controlling the big fighting robo machines. However, this anime flips that notion so that women are the ones who get to operate them. This alone brings two words to mind..........REFRESHINGLY AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!. Why diddent anyone think of this earlier !!!!!!!!

In this story, only women get to operate them which gives them all the power. GIRL POWER lol. Only one man can control them, Ichika Orimura. Because he is the only man that can control them, he is sent to a training academy which is obviously full of girls.
Yeah, I think you know where this is going, HAREM TIME LOL..........let the mayhem commence.

2. Characters

The characters are as refreshing as the story. All of them have a unique background and interesting traits. Most of the girls are from different countries, all of which are trying to win the affection of Ichika (HAREM), which really does produce some hilarious results lol. This is a great anime, I am honored to have it in my growing collection and I would recommend this to any anime fan, especially the action junkies lol.
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on 1 December 2013
The basic back plot is set in the near future, where a Japanese scientist engineers a powered exoskeleton called "Infinite Stratos" (IS). Possessing technology and combat capabilities far more advanced than any other weapon system, the IS threatens to destabilize the world. Faced with such an overpowering weapon, the nations of the world pass a treaty that states that IS will never be used for military combat and that existing IS technology must be equally distributed to all nations, to prevent any one nation from dominating the others.

The introduction of the IS does have a major effect on society, as the IS can only be operated by women, there is a shift in the power balance between men and women, where women now dominate society over men.
Ten years after IS was initially introduced, the world has entered a new age of peace. The peace is shattered, however, by Ichika Orimura, a 15-year-old Japanese boy able to operate an IS. Realizing the potential, the Japanese government forces the bewildered young man to attend the prestigious Infinite Stratos Academy, an international academy where IS pilots from all over the world are trained. He starts a busy high school life surrounded by nothing but girls who can use IS.

NOW the real story begins where Ichika stuck in the academy, who is socially inept at the best of times and oblivious to womens approaches to him (he treats everyone nice and friendly), with several girls after him including old childhood friends and classmates, all of whom are quite happy to smackdown their potential rivals for Ichika's affections, with their IS to back them up if necessary. All overlooked by Ichika's older sister, legendary IS pilot and teacher.

The story is good and each episode flows from one to another smoothly whilst keeping the clever overarching plot together, with funny and sweet moments to other times which can be a little bit serious, all broken up by some very decently animated action sequences, the IS movement and abilities was very believable (you get what I mean).

The dubbing in this is extremely well done, and I prefer to watch the dub rather than sub in this particular anime, as the dub really captures the accents of all the girls nationalities, and thus helps bring out their personalities a lot more.

Im a sucker for harem comedies, especially if they have some action sequences so if you like Rosario + Vampire, Demon King, Sekirei, Girls Bravo and To Love Ru, you should like this too.
There is also a second season coming out soon.
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on 14 April 2014
This anime is very sci-fi and quite raunchy. The only male in his school class so all the girls are after him one way or another.
The weapons and suits they use are so cool.
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on 25 October 2015
A great heram anime with good animation the English dub is also very well lined up with the animation. I would fully recommend this anime.
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on 26 August 2014
Great anime series as well as seeing everyone get along and to put aside their differences for the greater good of the cause.
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on 26 June 2015
i enjoyed it a twist in the story when the French character turned out to be a girl can't wait for the second season
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