Say hello to the …ecchi anime of Winter 2011…Now I know what you’re about to say. It’s ecchi so it doesn’t matter. You’d be surprised. It’s got an all-star cast and has an actual plot other than just boobs and ass.

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In an island casino called the Howard Resort, Rio Rollins is a popular casino dealer with the ability to bring good luck to gamblers just by walking past them, earning her the nickname “The Goddess of Victory”. Mint Clark, a young child, comes to the Howard Resort with her grandfather and encounters Rio, and the two become the best of friends.

Rio’s life soon changes when it is revealed that she is a “Gate Holder”, a dealer who holds one of the 13 legendary cards called “Gates”, and whoever collects them all will be named “Most Valuable Casino Dealer” (MVCD). To collect all 13 Gates, Rio must take part in special matches called “Gate Battles” with other Gate Holders and gain their Gates to become the most valuable casino dealer in the world.

See actual plot!

My Opinion
What’s not to like in this ecchi title from the Winter 2011 Anime Season. It’s got boobs, actual plot(rare from anything that has an ecchi tag), and super high level Seiyuu. It actually has something to offer other than just fanservice. I liken it to the Sekirei anime in that regard. It’s got boobs in one hand(I mean this metaphorically) and plot in the other. And they both make something at least worth watching.

This anime is also special to my heart along with Manyuu Hikenchou.

Yeah I went on that one solely by the ecchi and it has little to no plot but once you start looking at the bouncing boobs and the swords flying you forget what you’re doing anyway

It’s the first anime where I started to watch anime regularly again since the days of Toonami. Not just the Narutos, the Bleachs, and the One Pieces but just regular seasonal stuff. It’s the stuff that influences my writing(anime in general not ecchi although the hot springs scenes in Thief King Chronicles and Fairy Freedom look like they came right out of an ecchi anime). So I’m thankful for that.

The Highlights

  • The Cast. It’s easier to tell you who I haven’t heard of in someway. However I’ll try to tell everyone I know and what anime I know them from at the time the anime aired:
    1.Marina Inoue from Sekirei(this is two years before the Date A Live anime came out)
    2.Ayana Taketatsu(same thing two years before Date A Live)
    3.Aya Uchida(Before I knew Love Live)
    4.Minori Chihara(The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya. This is way before I became a huge fan of hers. In fact, I didn’t know she was in this anime until I started rewatching it for the Full Series Review)
    5.Sayaka Ohara from Sekirei(this was before Fairy Tail and a lot of stuff I watch with her in it.)
    6.Kikuko Inoue from Ah My Goddess(She’s in so much stuff I’ve seen lately but Ah My Goddess was the first time I heard her)
    7.Kazuhiko Inoue from Naruto(This is the first time I heard him where he was Kakashi from Naruto)
  • The Plot. Like I said you’d be surprised that this anime has an actual plot. It’s not a super deep anime but it has its plot and its good points
  • The Finale Arc(Every episode after Episode 9)

Side Note: I just noticed this while doing the review. There are a lot of Inoues in the anime, Marina Inoue, Kikuko Inoue, and Kazuhiko Inoue. Maybe they’re all related…hahaha. No they aren’t. Inoue is one of the most common last names in the Japanese language. It’s like the Smith of last names over there.

The Downsides

  • The plot, while existing, it’s really all that deep but then again were you really expecting something deep from an ecchi anime?

….

I can’t really think of much other stuff that really sucked on this anime. I’m kinda blocked by nostalgia because this anime is quite precious to me. If you can think of something leave it in the comments below

Now after the greatness and tiring experience that was the Love Live Season 2 Full Season Review, I’m going to review this anime based on the arcs and not episode by episode. Why? I try to have a bit of a life outside being an anime blogger and writing something about each episode would take all month.

So there are four arcs in this anime in my opinion. They are the Introduction Arc(Episodes 1-4), the Sky Resort Arc(Episodes 5-8), The Restoration of Confidence Arc(Episodes 9-10), and the Finale Arc(Episodes 11-13). So I’ll be talking about the arcs in general rather that episodes.

The Introduction Arc

So this arc of course introduces Rio(voiced by Marina Inoue) as well as all her co-workers on the Howard Resort. Mint Clark(voiced by Ayana Taketatsu), the secondary female protagonist, goes on holiday with her grandpa and ends up meeting Rio. Howard, the owner of the resort, asks Rio to take care of Mint during her stay. While walking back to her room, they get attack by Orlin Dunhill’s goons but Rio’s apparently got some Tohka’s fighting skills because she owns them all while wearing a super short maid outfit! The next day Rio beats him in poker with a pair of two, the weakest hand in poker.

Rio also trains a new recruit named Anya Helsing but she’s extremely clumsy. However she points out that Rio owns a Gate Card and explains all the stuff about Gates. Later the Gate Holder Elvis arrives at the casino to challenge Rio but loses.

Howard acquires the old Misery Castle as a part of the Resort but now Rio has to contend with the ghost of Misery(voiced by Eri Kitamura) who has possessed her friends Elle and Ille Adams(both voiced by Aya Uchida). Misery challenges Rio to a game of odds vs. evens. However Misery loses when she accidentally hits a super spicy chicken wing(I’m not making this stuff up) delivered by Rio’s childhood friend, Rina Tachibana.

Rina reveals that she’ll be working at the Howard Resort from now on. Rio takes the day off to show her around the island but their day is cut short by Bull Hard(not making this up) challenges Rio to a game vending machine lotto. Still not making this up! After he gets owned, Howard forces Rio and Rina to play a game of clay pigeon shooting where you lose clothes if you miss. However the match ends in a draw.

The Sky Resort Arc

Howard sends Rio, Rina, and Anya to work at Sky Resort casino at the top of the mountain on the island. Once they get there, they meet the Resort’s head dealer Linda who’s revealed to be a robot. Turns out that the actual resort flies in the air but before they really get serious a young boy reprograms Linda to challenge Rio to a Gate Battle on the Sky Resort’s water slide. Linda is defeated and Rio wins but not before Cartia Goltschimidt approached Howard with an offer for another Gate Battle.

During this arc, Rio battles against Jack, Queen, and King in quick succession because Cartia has hacked the Sky Resort’s mainframe and will not allow it to land until Rio is defeated. However Rio managed to defeat them all but is unable to defeat the final opponent, Rina, who is revealed to be a traitor. She hates Rio because Rio’s mother cheated with Rina’s father, forcing Rina’s mother to fall into a coma. This also shows that both girls are half sisters.

Restoration of Confidence Arc

Now Rio has been defeated Cartia takes control over Howard Resort and turns it into Goltschmidt Kingdom. Upon her defeat by Rina, Rio feels as if she’s let everyone down. However both Elvis and Orlin come around to try and cheer up her with a game. However Misery possesses Rosa and explains that Jack manipulated the game so that Rio would win.

Rio gets a call from Cartia for a job as a general manager but refuses, telling Rina she’ll return to defeat her. While walking out Rio’s trapped in a Roll Ruler. She battles against this person known as Joker and managed to win their Gate. Once she escapes it’s revealed that Dana the fortune teller is also Gate Holder of the 8 card. Rio battles against her as well winning her gate and restoring her confidence in herself.

Rio gathers together all her friends and mounts an assault on the Goltschmidt Kingdom, aiming to win enough slots to buy back the Resort.

The Finale Arc

Rio and her friends enter Goltschmidt Kingdom and starts winning big at all the games. However the next day both their winnings and Mint’s bear Choco are missing. Then they get challenged by Yang-Yang and An-An, the keepers of the 10 Gate, to a game of explosive Concentration. Rio and company manage to win only for Rina to arrive and challenge Rio to a Gate Battle for all the gates

After the terms are announced Rio and friends leave the resort to rest up before the battle. After they return the battle is announced to be a 15 game poker match. After taking the first two matches with her Roll Ruler, Rina starts aggressively dominating the match with 14 wins to Rio’s 0. However Rio immediately makes up the difference. And with the final match on the line, Rio wins and becomes one with the gates.

However Cartia and her goons try to use the gates for their power but not before Risa and Rina’s father come around and arrest them for crimes against basically casinos. Go figure. Rio uses her Ulimate Roll Ruler to spread good luck all over the world and life returns to normal until two mysterious figure appear on the roof of the Howard Resort.

So at least back in 2011, with the end showing those two new characters everyone was wondering if they’re was going to be a new season of Rio: Rainbow Gate. However it’s now 2014 and Rio: Rainbow Gate doesn’t have the restrictions that adapdation has since it’s based solely an a character. So if it hasn’t come out by now, it probably isn’t.

Also something I didn’t think of until this point. As we all know Casinos get a lot of money so much they don’t really need to worry about if a few people hit a jackpot in one day simply because they have so much money. However they jump on the back of cheaters but that’s a different problem right there.

However Rio, who’s Roll Ruler gives good luck and perks up the customer, is inherently bad to a casino. So let me get this straight. The woman that gives good luck to the customer is the most popular dealer around? The woman should be blacklisted and kicked out of the casino world.

Just a little logical fallacy that the anime didn’t even think about that I wanted to point out.

Now I give Rio: Rainbow Gate a 9/10 for good plot, great voice actor, and well done art.

So with that it’s the end of this month’s Full Season Review.

So as you know from the Love Live School Idol Project II Full Season Review, the next one on my list for October is the first season of Sword Art Online!

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Now for November, I’m going even further to my roots and reviewing the first Funimation title I ever saw. I’ll be reviewing Suzuka! It’s one of my favorite anime and what got me into Fuuka and all of Seo Kouji’s works.

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So until the next Full Season Review,
Later Days

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