Shirabii’s illustrations and Asato Asato’s writings combine to create the sci-fi light novel series 86 – Eighty Six. In February of this year, ASCII Media Works began publishing it under their Dengeki Bunko banner. Yaen Press has obtained a licence to distribute it in North America.
Two spin-off manga series, 86: Operation High School by Suzume Somemiya and 86: Fragmental Neoteny by Media Factory, have been serialised in Square Enix’s seinen manga magazine Monthly Comic Alive since June 27, 2020 and April 26, 2021, respectively, with a Motoki Yoshihara-illustrated adaptation since 2018. Beginning in the spring of2021, A-1 Pictures will air an anime television series based on the manga.
Currently, the Republic of San Magnolia is engaged in a nine-year war with the Empire of Giad. After originally being decimated by the Empire’s autonomous mechanised Legions, the Republic has subsequently created its own autonomous units dubbed Juggernauts, which are remotely controlled by a Handler, despite their initial devastation. Despite what the public sees, the Juggernauts are being flown by humans, all of whom are “86”—the classification given to the Colorata minority of San Magnolia.
After years of being victimised and blamed by the majority Alba race and its government, which upholds an Alba-supremacist republic, people of Colorata descent came to be deemed both legally and popularly inferior to Alba. The 86 were held in internment camps in the 86th District (their namesake) and compelled to participate in the Republic’s war with the Empire in order to get better treatment.
San Magnolia military officer and Alba aristocrat, Major Vladilena “Lena” Milizé, is an ardent advocate for the Colorata minority and the Republic’s purposeful deception of the general population. The Spearhead Squadron of the Eastern Front, an elite squad made up of 86 veterans who have earned their stripes, has appointed her as its Handler. Known as the “Spearhead Squadron,” the unit is notorious among military leaders thanks to the leadership of Shinei “The Undertaker” Nouzen.
As a result of their situation, the squad has gained reputation for the sanity and even suicide of the handlers who preside over the unit. 86 sympathiser Lena comes to know Spearhead Squadron during her tenure in charge of the contingent. At the same time, Lena and Shinei discover that the Republic and the battle with the Empire are not what they appear to be.
Novels Of A More Lighthearted Tone
Asato Asato penned the storey, Shirabii drew the illustrations, and I-IV created the mechanical art for this short storey. Since February 2017, ASCII Media Works has produced 10 volumes under the Dengeki Bunko banner. Since then, Yen Press has acquired the North American rights to publish the series, and thus far, eight volumes have been released. Lempert provided the English translation.
One year after Kadokawa’s “Kimirano” light novel website celebrated its first anniversary, on March 15, 2020, an anime television series was revealed on a livestream.
In addition to Toshimasa Ishii directing, Toshiya no wrote the texts, Tetsuya Kawakami designed the characters, and Hiroyuki Sawano and Kohta Yamamoto composed the music. It was produced by A-1 Pictures. To create the CG, Shirogumi has been tasked with this task. A 2020 premiere date for the show has been postponed indefinitely. A split-currency animation, the first half of the series will broadcast on Tokyo MX and other stations from April 11 through June 20, 2021.
On March 28, 2021, Tokyo MX aired a special programme celebrating the beginning of the series with the main cast, producer Nobuhiro Nakayama, and soundtrack composer Hiroyuki Sawano. On October 3, 2021, the second part of the show aired.  For an English-language simulcast and dub, Crunchyroll licenced the series outside of Asia. iQIYI and Bilibili are streaming the series in Southeast Asia, which was licenced by Muse Communication.’3-bun 29-by’ by Hitorie serves as the show’s first opening theme, while ‘Avid’ by SawanoHiroyuki[nZk]:mizuki serves as its first closing theme. SawanoHiroyuki[nZk]:Laco’s “Hands Up to the Sky” is the second theme of the album.Second opening theme “Kyokaisen” (lit. Boundary Line) by Amazarashi, and third ending theme “Alchemila” by Regal Lily are included in this volume.
Grand Prize at Dengeki Novel Awards in 2016 for the light novel. The light novel also placed second in Takarajimasha’s annual light novel guide book Kono Light Novel ga Sugoi!, in the bunkobon genre, in 2018. In 2019, it was rated fifth.
According to Comic Book Resources’ Joe Ballard: “86-Eighty-Six is everything but your normal light book series. It portrays combat, drama, the supernatural, and the shockingly discriminating beliefs of a nation’s general populace.” Volume 1 of the light book was lauded by UK Anime News as “thought-provoking, emotive, and exceedingly difficult to put down.” According to The Fandom Post, the first volume “wasn’t really original,” but it was pleased by how the “bloodless war” premise was subverted and how the narrative and characters were developed “pretty solid.”
As one of the top anime shows of the year in 2021, IGN named this one of their picks.The first season of the anime was praised by many Anime News Network writers, with Steve Jones picking the second season as his most anticipated for autumn 2021.
“Technobabble” may have weighed heavily on the first episode, but the show’s footing was more solid by episode two, according to the Fandom Post.
According to the site’s review of season one, it had a spectacular production value, good animations and soundtrack, and wonderful conveying of its topics. Callum May, writing for Anime News Network, lauded the first few episodes as “surprisingly gripping,” and praised the show’s direction, storyboarding, and animation.