Also Known As: NieA Under 7: Domestic Poor @nimation
Genre: Comedy/Drama
Format: 13 Episodes
Allegiance: Triangle Staff
Director: Sato Takuya, Tokoro Tomokazu
Vintage: 2000
Intelligence Agency Report by: Ritalin
NieA_7 is about Mayuko, a poverty-stricken student with many part-time jobs as to pay for her apartment and fooding. The apartment is above a bathhouse that receives little profit and is in constant demand of new ways to bring in the customers. Adding to this stress is an under alien named NieA, who is an “under seven” in the alien ranks (in other words, a nobody) that lives in Mayuko’s closet. NieA is constantly building UFO’s out of junk found and mooching off Mayuko’s minuscule amount of food. The relationship between NieA and Mayuko doesn’t appear to be a friendly one, instead more of one about slight tolerance between the two.

Field Agent Report by: Ritalin
Plot
Characters
Impact
Visual
Audio
8.50
9.00
10.00
7.50
7.25
Overall 9.00
(not an average)

Where would one start on reviewing NieA_7? That’s difficult to answer, since this anime seems to start in the middle of a story. Coming from the same people who did Serial Experiments: LainHaibane Renmei and Texhnolyze comes… a comedy? Don’t let the overshadowing humor and innocent drama fool you, while it doesn’t come with jam-packed and overwhelming psychological twists, it does have a deep meaning at the end of the series. At first, one might see this anime as plain and too realistic outside of the fact there are aliens working in restaurants. One would wonder what exactly can happen in an anime with no enemies or serious almost life-threatening problems. But that is what makes this anime wonderful; it pieces together a wonderful story without the clichés and plenty of metaphors and morals to pass around.

The beauty of NieA_7 is the metaphors, morals, and the themes it has. Some even go as far to say this is a pre-watered down version of FLCL. The one theme to stand out the most than any other was that of racism. This is seen by the actions and lives of humans and aliens living amongst each other, the major example being the relationship between Mayuko and NieA of constant bickering and annoyance. Along with many other morals this anime delivers, the characters are by far the best element this anime dishes out. Even the aliens are caught in societies need for a work force and everyday struggles that the humans deal with. All of the characters have great personalities behind them, with the exception that the background and history of the aliens is never mentioned, it works out.

No one knows the history behind the arrival of the aliens; they just landed in the Mothership one day in Japan and began living lives as anyone else would. I often wished to have a flashback explaining where exactly these aliens came from! While it didn’t do much harm to the story in the end, it was a bit of annoyance. NieA herself was overly irritating on occasions, often making me want to leap into the TV and slap her. While her character is lovable and enjoyable… for the first few episodes… she could use a bit of a tone down in some points. The jokes, while good, sometimes didn’t get to the punch-line at the right moments, which sadly was too often. When they were done correctly, I found myself rolling on the floor laughing. By far, the “AM7 PM11” pun was the best.

In the end, I highly recommend this anime to anyone who is a fan of Serial Experiments: Lain or any other of ABe’s anime, because this is ABe’s first work and is extremely different, not to mention very unique. The downfalls of the series are easily made up with the excellent plot and characters usage, so don’t let that ruin the anime for you.