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A.I. Love You is a Manga series by author Ken Akamatsu. First released in the mid-1990s in Japan, an English translation of the series is published by Tokyo Pop, and a French one by Pika Editions ; the first volume came out in North America and France in February and May 2004 respectively.
It tells the tale of Hitoshi Kōbe, who is neither academically gifted nor good at sports, so he does not do well at school. His true skill is at programming computers, to the point that he can make self-modifying programs - true artificial intelligence. He has created thirty such programs, and the latest one - named Saati - is so advanced that conversation with her is indistinguishable from a normal girl and, thus, would easily pass the Turing test. So he has an intangible girlfriend. Yay.
Things go kind of sideways (as most series of this type tend to do) when a freak lightning strike causes Saati to materialize into the real world...
The basic plotline is derivative of the Kōsuke Fujishima manga Ah! My Goddess, with the AI constructs being analogous to the goddess characters of the earlier manga. The setting also bears similarities to the John Hughes film Weird Science. Both feature male protagonists creating their ideal girlfriends on computers and both girls are brought into the real world via lightning, bearing somewhat superhuman powers. Despite these obvious similarities however, Akamatsu claims not to have seen the film prior to creating the series.
This series contains examples of:
- Art Evolution: Later volumes in this series resemble early volumes of Love Hina.
- Author Appeal: Akamatsu has stated that Saati has such prominent eyebrows because he finds them attractive.
- Become A Real Girl
- Back for the Finale: Hacker Billy-G, the main antagonist during the first part of the series, disappears after creating a back-up copy of Saati in chapter 20. He finally comes back in the last chapter (55), where he uses the back-up to save the real Saati from deletion, unbeknownst to everyone.
- Do Androids Dream?
- Expy: Fate Averruncus of Akamatsu's current manga Mahou Sensei Negima strongly resembles Program Number Zero. Hitoshi's hardass teacher also appears in Negima, as a teacher at Mahora.
- Freud Was Right: As stated in the character profiles, Saati, the main squeeze, was modeled after Hitoshi's mother.
- And then there was the whole filler based around Saati "mothering" Hitoshi...
- Hair Antennae
- Honest Axe: Hitoshi throws his computer out of the window, and Saati and Twenty fall into the roles of the water sprites, asking him if he dropped an old 286 or a new Pentium. He lies, claiming that it was the Pentium.
- Lethal Chef: Early in Saati's cooking lessons, her sole experience with food is looking at pictures of the finished product, not realizing that the dishes must be made of edible ingredients.
- She cooks using things like watercolor paints and dish detergent.
- Lightning Can Do Anything
- Love Triangle
- Magical Computer tropes. Almost all of them. Good adherence to the hardware of its time, but that just makes the magic more incredulous.
- Although the use of 5-1/4" floppies instead of 3-1/2" is... borderline.
- Magical Girlfriend: Saati.
- Marshmallow Hell: Although one Beach Chapter featured... well... Pie Hell.
- One-Note Cook: Once Saati learns how to cook, she can only make curry, no matter how hard she tries to... not make curry.
- Phenotype Stereotype: Cindi, the forward, Genki Girl American actress.
- Pygmalion Plot
- Raging Stiffie: Hitoshi is the human 'bar' in a beach limbo contest with Saati and the others. When her turn comes round, he's set so low that she's grinding against him - then her boobs get in the way. He lifts up to let her pass, but not before his resultant tentpole nearly wangs (sorry) her in the face. Cue Naru Punch.
- Robot Girl: In order of creation: Toni, No.29, Saati, Peter-Saati (A.I. Memory, Please come back!), Forty, Forty-kun/Forty-chan, and No. 31.
- Shout-Out "But what's causing this Ranma complex of hers?" Here, top left.
- Technology Marches On: It's rather humorous to see Koube get worked up over the idea of being able to buy a HDD that's *gasp* 1 Gigabyte! The use of a modem and the old Apple Computer he has add to this too.
- And they were using 5-1/4" floppies, too. Talk about a nostalgia trip...
- Technopath: Saati.
- The Glomp: Happens in Chapter 3 Page 3. when Hitoshi agrees to introduce Saati to all the clubs.
- Tsundere: In later volumes, Saati becomes a more obvious proto-Naru.
- Unwanted Harem
- What Measure Is a Non-Human?
- Worth It: Hitoshi makes Saati feel herself up with his VR arm controller - beatdowns ensue, but he concludes that it was totally worth it.