Series Recommendation: Full Metal Panic! One Night Stand

FMP: One Night Stand is a compilation movie of the tv series from episode 9 to 12, much like Boy Meets Girl, this movie condensed the scenes and update some visuals for a more comprehensive viewing, as well as featuring a new ending song.

+ Plot: Whereas the first movie focused almost exclusively on Kaname and Sousuke, the 2nd one leaves a lot of room for the cute petite captain of the Tuatha de Danaan – Teletha Testarossa aka “Tessa”. The awkward relationship she has with Sousuke and Kaname’s unclear feelings make for quite an entertaining first sequence, basically the romcom of the movie. It was pretty funny to see the awkward Tessa and headstrong Chidori figuring out their feelings together. The “villains” this time aren’t Gauron and his goon but a more tragic pair of siblings. Really love the exchange between Seina and Commander Kalinin. Some things that can only be realized when you pass the point of no return. That’s why it’s important to cherish your loved ones when you can.
+ Animation: Pretty much the same from the tv series, but with some action scenes redone with more detailed. Though some panning shots are still the same (where the Arbalest jump up in the background). For a series made in 2001-2002, FMP is mostly fine. Though the mecha action in the 2nd movie is scarce and half of them feature a very lumbering and clunky mech, militaristic feel is still there. In terms of showing off the Arbalest, it got less screentime compared to the 1st and 3rd movie, but a decent showing nonetheless.

+ Mecha Design: As mentioned in the 1st movie’s recommendation, the mechs are designed by Kanetaka Ebikawa-sensei, renowned for his utilitarian and militaristic designs. The Arm Slaves are generally free from additional armor plates, such as skirt armor and complicated shoulder/torso armor. The moving joints are very easy to spot, though reinforced, they aren’t covered in a lot of panels or complex details, which emphasizes the feeling that they aren’t super prototype or special units like SRW OG. Even the “main” mechs – the Arbalest – feels just like a normal M9 but with different coloring and design.
The Behemoth made its debut in this episode. It’s basically Giant Robo but more…barrel-ish. It’s round, lumbering and slow as hell, pretty much a moving fortress. I like the fact that it has to have the Lambda Driver activated at all times, or it would immediately collapse under its own weight. Goes to show why mechs won’t work in real life. +
+ Music: We got a new song by Yamada Tamaru – Tow of Us. It’s got a similar vibe to other FMP songs like Tomorrow. Pretty uplifting and breathtaking, slow and gentle. Basically inline with FMP’s theme – even while fighting a war, the characters go back to their daily lives right after.

Overall, One Night Stand is a good compilation film for Full Metal Panic. It stripped off some excess scenes (well mostly humor because we are too used to those), and focus on the overarching storyline and relationship between the characters, which is nice. The updated visuals might or might not be very apparent – since it was pretty minor, but still a decent animated movie anyway. Really recommend this after the first movie if you want to continue further with FMP story.