Air Master is a fighting/Martial Arts Adaptation of the manga that was serialized in the Hakusens Young Animal. It was licensed by Geneon for release in the states, but unfortunately only four discs have been released thus far and there are no plans for any more to be released.
The main character is a 16 year old redhead school girl, who does not fit the typical martial arts mold that so many of us are familiar with. Maki in contrast is tall and fairly muscular. Also the art style is best described as old school, compared to other works in the same genre, such as Tenjo Tenge or Ikkitousen. The series itself is a homage/parody of the fighting genre, as well as other genres which are well hidden within the series. The series gets its title from Maki’s ability to climb walls of buildings, execute death-defying jumps, change the course mid-air, and pull off multiple aerial attacks.
As the series opens we find Maki defending and befriending a group of girls her own age. The next day to her surprise she finds out that they attend the same school that she just transferred to.
In most episodes she ends up fighting one of the local street fighters. As the series progresses Maki and her friends learn about the secretive and underground “Fukamichi Rankings”, where fighters earn reputation and money as they fight for the top. Maki eventually decides to enter the tournament in order to fight ever stronger opponents and for the thrill of the fight. Many of her pervious opponents vainly try to keep up with her progress including some would be Suitors.
The other focus of the series is Maki’s past, which we learn through flash backs and dreams. Since Maki is reluctant to speak about her past.
Airmaster is by far one of my favorite fighting/martial arts anime series that I have seen recently. Many of the main charters are well developed even though I think they could have flushed out the characters of Maki’s friends a bit better. That being said, they way they were presented to the viewer works well in the context of this series.I also enjoyed that they used old school animation style that i miss in some of the newer animes in the same genre's. There is also plenty fanservice for those of us who enjoy their dose of ecchi. There are also plenty of references to other anime’s and games buried within Airmaster if you look for them, one of my favorite references is that of the game franchise Street Fighter. If you like fighting/Martial Arts I am sure you will get a kick out of this series, I know I did.