Cover of the novel showing the two protagonists
|Genre||Adventure, Science fiction|
|Written by||Haruka Takachiho|
|Illustrated by||Yoshikazu Yasuhiko|
|Published by||Hayakawa Publishing|
|Original run||May 1980 – October 2007|
Dirty Pair (Japanese: ダーティペア Hepburn: Dāti Pea?) is a series of sci-fi comedy light novels written by Haruka Takachiho and illustrated by Yoshikazu Yasuhiko that was later adapted into anime and manga versions. The franchise has bounced across multiple formats and production companies, resulting in (so far) eight novels and a few shorter stories, a television series, two OVA series, two OVA features, a feature film, a number of graphic novels, and two short Japanese radio series. The 1985 television series won the Animage Anime Grand Prix prize for that year.
The stories take place in the years 2138-43, by which time humanity has spread across some few thousand star systems. A corporation called the World Welfare Works Association (WWWA or 3WA) helps member systems of the United Galactica (UG) federation deal with various planetary-scale problems, for profit, by sending agents called "trouble consultants". The series focuses on a team of trouble consultants in that section, named Kei and Yuri, who have a reputation for leaving a trail of destruction behind them, for which they are known publicly as the "Dirty Pair".
The light novels are written by Haruka Takachiho with illustrations by Yoshikazu Yasuhiko. Between 1980 and 2007, eight novels were published. Takachiho drew inspiration from female professional wrestling when creating the series.
- ダーティペアの大冒険 (Daatipea no Daibouken <The Dirty Pair's Great Adventures>, 1979; book: 1980)
- ダーティペアの大逆転 (Daatipea no Daigyakuten <The Dirty Pair Strike Again>, 1985; book: 1985)
- ダーティペアの大乱戦 (Daatipea no Dairansen <DP's Rough and Tumble>, 1985–87; book: 1987)
- ダーティペアの大脱走 (Daatipea no Daidassou <DP's Great Escape>, 1991–92; book: 1993)
- ダーティペア外伝 独裁者の遺産 (Dokusaisha no Isan <Legacy of the Dictator>—Dirty Pair Side Story #1, 1997; book: 1998)
- ダーティペアの大復活 (Daatipea no Daifukkatsu <DP's Great Resurrection>, 2004)
- ダーティペアの大征服 (Daatipea no Daiseifuku <DP's Great Conquest>, 2006)
- ダーティペアの大帝国 (Daatipea no Daiteikoku <DP's Great Empire>, 2007) —conclusion of the preceding novel
Kei and Yuri are the two members of Trouble Consultant team 234, code named "Lovely Angels". Almost every mission they are involved with ends up in disaster, but not failure (they'll catch the crook, but a city may be destroyed in the process), and thus they are more generally known as the "Dirty Pair", a nickname they hate. They are always cleared of any wrongdoing by the 3WA's Central Computer because the extreme collateral damage is never actually their fault (though their mere presence has been known to make things worse). In some but not all continuities, they have joint ESP powers, usually limited to precognition. This talent was the reason they were recruited in the first place.
Kei is a hot-headed tomboy with red hair and tanned skin who wears a silver-white uniform. She favors large weaponry and prefers to "shoot first, ask questions later". The more aggressive of the two, she is also the bustier of the pair and is attracted to manly, muscular men. Yuri is of Japanese ethnicity, and wears a golden-yellow uniform. She often uses non-gun weaponry such as energy whips or throwing cards. While the more feminine of the two, she is known to become very violent when crossed. She is the more bottom-heavy of the team and is also a coy flirt who prefers cultured, refined men. Her most recognized weapon is the Bloody Card, a technologically enhanced throwing card that can be used to take down several people at once.
Affair of Nolandia
The first animated adaption of Dirty Pair. It is an hour long OVA feature concerning a plot with the pair tracking down a psychic girl.
An anime television series based on the novels, simply titled Dirty Pair, ran for 26 episodes that aired on Nippon Television affiliates from July to December 1985.
Dirty Pair: Project Eden, known in Japan as Dirty Pair: The Movie (ダーティペア Daati Pea Gekijou-ban), is a feature-length anime film based on the Dirty Pair anime series originally released in Japan on November 28, 1986.
Dirty Pair (OVA series)
The Dirty Pair OVA series, or Original Dirty Pair, is a 10-episode OVA series. It is a continuation of the original Dirty Pair series chronicling the further adventures of Kei and Yuri. The series was released on December 21, 1987 through April 21, 1988.
Flight 005 Conspiracy
The second hour long OVA released in 1990. The plot concerns the pair investigating a mysterious plane explosion.
Dirty Pair Flash
Dirty Pair Flash were three OVAs series totaling 16 episodes, 1994–1996. The story premise and character designs are very different from any of the other versions.
The American comic company and manga translator Studio Proteus acquired rights to create comic versions of The Dirty Pair in 1989; the first two graphic novels were published by the since-defunct Eclipse Comics. Later the rights were transferred to Dark Horse Comics. The first three series were written by Toren Smith and Adam Warren and drawn by Warren—after that Smith left the project and Warren took over writing completely. These stories have a much more cyberpunk style than the other versions; the later stories, starting with Fatal but not Serious, move into the transhuman subgenre.
The Great Adventures of the Dirty Pair (ダーティペアの大冒険 Dāti Pea no Daibōken) is a 2010 - 2011 manga adaptation by Hisao Tamaki serialised by Tokuma Shoten in Monthly Comic Ryū, that is a retelling of the original Dirty Pair light novel of the same name, but with significant character redesigns.
A fifth version of the "DP Concept" made its debut on 1 October 2006 in a 26-week radio series on FM Osaka, entitled "Lovely Angel: Kei & Yuri". A streaming Internet broadcast of successive episodes became available beginning 15 October. The story involves a case in which the Lovely Angels assist the FBI on a case which takes them along the route of the old Route 66. The series features Horie Yui as Yuri and Minagawa Junko as Kei. While Takachiho participated in the selection of the voice artists, he was not involved in the writing for this series. (Additional information on the series, in Japanese, can be found at Nihon Sunrise's site.
A second radio series, "Daatipea91: Kunoichi" began on FM Osaka on 15 October 2007. This time written by Takachiho himself, it places eighteen-year-old Kei and Yuri in Japan in the year 1791 as student ninjas who find themselves embroiled in political affairs of the period. Horie Yui and Minagawa Junko reprised their voice roles. Again, a streaming broadcast was available. This series was re-broadcast during March to April 2009.