Ando Lloyd – AI Knows Love?
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Just finished watching TBS’s sci-fi drama Ando Lloyd, which aired from October to December of 2013. The drama starred Kimura Takuya in the dual roles of Matsushima Reiji, genius researcher, and Ando Lloyd, the android sent back in time to protect Ando Asahi, Reiji’s fiance. Ando Asahi was played by Shibasaki Kou. I was happy to see the couple acting together again since the last time I saw them was in Good Luck!!
Oshima Yuko plays Matsushima Nanase, Reiji’s sister. Kiritani Kenta played Hoshi Shinzo, Asahi’s co-worker and genius hacker. Honda Tsubasa played Suppli, Ando Lloyd’s nurse and general savior. Yamaguchi Sayaka plays Komatsu Sakiko, Asahi’s other co-worker. Kiritani Mirei plays The Last Queen, super advanced and super crazy android. Hiraoka Yuka plays Kadoshiro Hajime, another android, converted to Ando Lloyd’s cause. Finally, Endo Kenichi plays Ashimo Isaku, seemingly the last honest, surviving police officer.
Matsushima Reiji is a brilliant scientist that somehow discovers something about 2113 (I’m still not sure what, though), and because of his overriding concern of protecting his fiance, Ando Asahi, he somehow seals the path between the future and the past, meaning no one can travel between the two times. Matsushima Reiji is killed to “unclog” the path. That doesn’t work. And then, the great minds of the future theorize that Reiji’s feelings for Asahi are causing the problem. They decide that killing Asahi will clear up the problem. To kill her, they send 11 androids.
Asahi finds out about her fiance’s death from a television report. While grieving, she encounters an android that has the same looks as her fiance. This android has come into the past to fight the 11 androids. His mission is to protect Asahi, even if that means killing human beings, along with the androids attacking Asahi. Ando Asahi talks him down from really doing any collateral damage, but the android itself does a good job of growing as a “human being” in this drama. Not only does he appreciate the fact that Asahi names him Ando Lloyd, even catching the pun in that, but he is able to enjoy food, appreciate Suppli’s loving sacrifice for him, and realize the value of human beings, friendships and memories. As Lloyd grows, his relationship with Asahi grows, as well, I think.
In this journey of self-discovery, the audience catches a glimpse of Lloyd’s dark past. We are told about how all the androids of Lloyd’s type were infected with bugs in 2066 and killed millions of people, after which all such androids were captured and destroyed. Lloyd was the only one who escaped and then went on a vendetta to kill various world politicians. The actual truth was that this was a deliberate culling of the human population, and the androids were deliberately infected with a software that ordered them to kill. Lloyd was able to escape in the end and track down and eliminate all politicians that participated in this horrific act. Lloyd still has memories of all of these kills.
As the drama goes along, we meet a mysterious high school student, who turns out to be The Last Queen. The Last Queen is the ultimate android and no one in existence can beat her. We are then told that this ultimate being was not created by the great minds of 2113, but was a creation of Matsushima Nanase’s dark/alternate personality, a personality who hated her own brother. The Last Queen, like Nanase, is a lot crazy. She feels that humans have no value and are there to serve the androids.
The Last Queen uses her powers to get the politicians of 2013 to sign over their people for prosperity in the future. She then begins her mind games by attacking the people Asahi cares about one by one, and then finally gets to Asahi. Lloyd has no way of beating this android, and, therefore, sacrifices himself to kill the Last Queen by encasing the two of them in an energy shell until they explode.
A couple of months later, Lloyd returns, his memory cube having been discovered at the bottom of the sea and sent back to a 5d-printer in 2013. He ejects his cube from the body and Reiji’s mind data is entered into the android, at the same time returning the android to basic biological functions. The end result is that we have Reiji back, albeit in a new body. As an epilogue, we see Ando Lloyd deciding to print himself out once more.
The drama started out great, and I enjoyed the action sequences. I also enjoyed how Kimura Takuya portrayed both Reiji and Lloyd in such different manners. The relationship between Asahi and this being that needed to grow as a human, was also a fun watch.
Where the drama took a bad turn was with the involvement of Nanase and her dark side. Am I really supposed to believe that this kid killed her parents, had the genius brain to create The Last Queen, and yet no one in her everyday life realized that she had this hidden side and that she needed help! The drama does make an attempt at saying that we already knew that she has a dark side, but it came out of nowhere to the viewers. I felt the story really dragged when it focused on The Last Queen and Nanase.
Additionally, how are we supposed to believe that the androids we saw were built in 2113 and that there was all this technology readily available just a 100 years later, especially when none of that was available right now? How was the communication happening between the future and the past and yet no one knew about it, but as the drama went along, it turned out to be an open secret? How are we supposed to believe that the Last Queen is really gone, when Lloyd can come back from atomic disposal? How was Reiji clogging the time path between the future and present, and how the heck did it fix itself even when Reiji came back? What was it about the Reiji brain data being destroyed, and, yet, still surviving so that it could be put back into the android body and become Reiji once more?
I also didn’t like the stupidity of our main character, Ando Asahi. This woman knows that there are machines out to kill her, but let that stop her from running around like a chicken without its head. She didn’t give a second thought to these dangers and how these confrontations would put Lloyd in danger when she went off running to look for Nanase or for whatever trumped up reason. She was never really useful, and more of a burden to every other single person on the show. I guess, I found our heroine to be a bit annoying, when her character is supposed to be an ultra smart woman running some sort of division in some sort of high-tech company, she was really quiet a dunce.
I know that my retelling of this is disjointed, but that is how I felt when watching the drama. What was happening and why it was happening was never fully explained. The drama left me with a lot of questions, and that is why despite enjoying it for the first half, I can only give it a 5/10. I’d say watch it, but with no expectations.