Let me start out by saying that I did actually enjoy the story for Air Gear. There is a point where something is so hilariously bad that I sort of love it. It's like watching a car wreck you can't look away from. The basic premise is that a boy named Itsuki discovers ATs (electric roller blades that allow you to do incredible tricks.) This is his journey to build a team and become the most powerful roller blader in history. The story has a bit of a Yu-Gi-Oh esque appeal to it in its utter ridiculousness. I realize that some people do take roller blading very seriously but the second you start bringing in century old prophesies about the king of the riders, you've gone beyond the realm where I can take it seriously. Other than that, it's a pretty basic "battle of the week" show where the main character (or someone else in his team) has to face off against a bigger and more dangerous enemy. These sorts of shows get old very quickly for me but, if none of the above is a turn off for you, then go ahead.
The animation gets worse and worse as the show progresses. It's honestly really awful. The characters are stiff, which hits especially hard in this anime due to the fact that they are all on roller blades most of the time and should look smoother than normal. The roller blading looks like a lot of stationary shots with a moving background or shots where the character animation is simply looped so you can see the same movements being used over and over again in the most obvious fashion. I realize looping the animation is sometimes necessary with a small budget, but this show didn't even attempt to hide it. I am going to be kind about the fact that, somehow, the characters can pull off these impossible tricks that allow them to practically fly... its anime. I've seen stranger things. But the tricks aren't even animated in a way that I could even buy to be in the realm of possibility. They all ultimately look cheesy and ridiculous.
The sound isn't the worst thing in this show. The opening and closing shows are catchy and the music does a good job of making this anime feel very modern. The sound gives the anime an upbeat feel that I really did enjoy. It's doesn't stand out in any remarkable way but it wasn't bad.
I am being really kind with the character rating because of the simple reason that the characters made me laugh. They were so utterly ridiculous that even their serious speeches felt like comedy. Yet, at their core, these characters are honestly terrible. Itsuki is a generic Naruto type guy, who gets through a lot of bad situations on sheer enthusiasm. He is no different from a million other characters I've seen before. I enjoyed Akito and Agito (I am trying to avoid spoilers so anyone who has seen this show, please bear with me.) Their relationship is an intriguing one and I found myself enjoying the two of them together. Yet, when you look at their personalities individually, they are just stereotyped extremes. I will say that they were not devoid of interesting facets to their personalities but their intrigue wore off pretty fast. Forget all of the female characters. They are all pretty useless. Ringo is essentially a love blinded school girl. Sure she can roller blade with the best of them, but every time she does have an awesome AT battle, the creators put her in a new skimpy and revealing outfit as if to apologize for making her useful. Simca is utterly useless. Once again we have a character who is a very talented rider but all she really does is hang around to sexually harass the main character. All of the characters lack dimension and try to make up for it with terrible friendship speeches and horrible flying metaphors about their dreams.
What do I say about this anime? It feels like a parody of itself. It's not a great show. It was good for a couple of laughs but not much more than that.
overall score: 4.5/10
overall score: 4.5/10
overall score: 7.3/10