Appleseed (アップルシ－ド Appurushîdo?) is a cyberpunk-style anime OVA that takes place in the future. The anime, produced by Bandai Visual in 1988, is an adaptation of the manga, Appleseed created by Masamune Shirow. The anime departs from the manga's storyline and primarily has only the setting and characters in common. It is not to be confused with the 2004 film partially also based on the manga.
After World War 3 the General Management Control Office construct an experimental city known as Olympus inhabited by humans, cyborgs and bioroids.
Bioroids are a genetically engineered being created to serve mankind. They run all administration of Olympus. Olympus was meant to be a utopian society. But for some it is less of a utopia and more of a cage. Calon Mautholos, an Olympus city police officer, is one of these people.
Calon secretly conspires with a terrorist, A. J. Sebastian, to destroy Gaia, a super computer that runs Olympus. Out to stop them are Olympus city police ESWAT (Enhanced SWAT) team members Deunan Knute and Briareos Hecatonchires. Deunan and Briareos are determined to stop the terrorist plot by any means necessary.
Briareos is a cyborg, mostly human but with enhanced physical strength and an integrated head/helmet, with multiple camera eyes. The most obvious feature are the long sensor antennae which resemble the ears of a rabbit, but which hold such things as a camera eye which allows him to see around corners without exposing himself. They are hinged at the base, and move in response to Briareos' mood.
Deunan is a natural human. However, she is skilled in operating her "Guges"-model "Landmate," an exoskeleton-armor powersuit, more powerful and responsive than the standard police-issue "Cadmos" Landmates, and the only type which can take the punishment which she gives.
Calon, a natural human like Deunan, is a friend of hers and of Briareos, but he has become disenchanted with life in Olympus following the suicide of his wife, an artist who felt stifled by the pre-programmed environment. Calon becomes bitter, and believes that it is his duty to "free" natural humans from this unnatural environment.
A. J. Sebastian is also a foreign cyborg, with enhanced strength and interchangeable limbs, whose mission is to steal a huge, flying armored tank (called the Multi-ped Cannon) and deliver it to a strike force which flies across the border in support.
He and Calon have plotted to disable Gaia, the computer system which controls Olympus' infrastructure, including the override circuits which safeguard Multi-ped Cannon.
To do so, they stage a raid on the facility where bioroids are created, creating havoc by killing and by arson. However, it is discovered that the attack is just a cover for stealing information on one particular bioroid, Hitomi, a friend of Deunan and Briareos, whose DNA is the genetic key which will cause Gaia to shut down. The "locks" are a handful of kiosks, scattered across the city, and the city director orders all but one destroyed, and a heavy guard placed around the one which remains.
Sebastian converts to his full-military configuration and steals Multi-ped Cannon, while Calon—wearing a Cadmos suit which has been made faster through the removal of half the armor—takes Hitomi to the one surviving kiosk. With his faster suit, he is able to get her to the portal, through a hail of gunfire which goes through the decreased armor. As Calon dies, a terrified, confused Hitomi backs into the kiosk, launching the shutdown process.
To cover his theft of the Multi-ped Cannon, Sebastian uses the tank and its weapons to cause damage in the city, while the director and Deunan rush to try to restart Gaia, by destroying the circuit module which keeps the system offline. Unfortunately, Deunan's pistol is damaged and her right (shooting) hand is injured by the databank defense system. The director hands over her own pistol, trusting Deunan's skill more than her own, even with an unfamiliar weapon and shooting left-handed.
With her last round of ammunition, Deunan is able to hit the module with pistol fire, and Gaia immediately disables the Multi-ped Cannon. Sebastian is killed, Calon is mourned, and life goes on.
- Deunan Knute - Masako Katsuki
- Briareos Hecatonchires - Yoshisada Sakaguchi
- Athena Areios - Toshiko Sawada
- Nike - Kumiko Takizawa
- Hitomi - Mayumi Shou
- Deunan Knute - Larissa Murray
- Briareos Hecatonchires - Bill Roberts
- Athena Areios - Lorelei King
- Nike - Alison Dowling
- Hitomi - Julia Brahms
- Calon Mautholos (Karon) - Alan Marriott (As David Reynolds)
- Lt. Bronx - Jesse Vogel
- A.J. Sebastian - Vincent Marzello