What happened to Kinuko Oomori?

Kinuko Oomori was born in 1967 in Aoyama, Tokyo in Japan. According to a Japanese fan site, as of 1998, Kinuko was happily married with a child.

Though she rarely spoke about her early life, it is known that her parents divorced when she was a child and that her mother left. She started her music career at an incredibly youthful age around 1979 with the children's idol trio "Milk" with Yoko Oginome and Kazumi Obata. When that group disbanded a year later, she decided to continue her music career as a solo artist with the release of her debut single "Konya wa Hurricane" in 1986, and that became the most recognizable theme for BubbleGum Crisis.

  • Just at the age of nineteen, Oomori was cast in the role of Priss after an audition. In 1988, she signed with CBS Sony Records to release her only album "Sweet Dreams". This decision while pushing her music career forward was detrimental to her role in the BubbleGum crisis anime due to the clash of contracts.
  • The contract she signed with CBS prevented her from performing any solo vocal numbers for the anime series after the third episode.
  • It got extremely bad because it causes a legal conflict between CBS Sony, AIC, and Artmic to the point that the producers thought of wanting to kill off that main character after the sixth episode.
  • However, that character prove to be too popular among the fanbase and so the decision was made to keep the character. A sequel was made to BubbleGum Crisis called "BubbleGum Crash!" in 1991, but the internal issues combined with the budget and corporate politics, that series too was canceled just after three episodes.

Produced and made between 1987 to 1991, the BubbleGum CrisisOVA (Original Video Animation) was a cyberpunk anime collaboration between producer Youmex and animation teams, AIC and Artmic, the story follows the Knight Sabers.

The team is composed entirely of female mercenaries who wear exoskeletons and fight a variety of problems, typically rogue robots. Led by Sylia Stingray (Voiced by Yoshiko Sakakibara), the group often encounters boomers which are artificial cybernetic life forms that are mostly in the form of humans created by the Genom Corporation.

Several sequel series followed the success of the original series. What makes this series stand out from other cyberpunk-themed stories is that it combines both City Pop and Rock music into a suitable fitting with the setting that is done extremely well as the anime was influenced by movies such as Blade Runner and Streets of Fire.

There are many references throughout the OVA series on these films as well as other American box offices such as The Terminator. Despite its success, the series was plagued with internal corporate issues and legal problems. Thus, it would eventually be reduced to only eight episodes instead of the proposed thirteen following a premature cancellation. However, the series has gained a notable cult following and a revival of interest with an attempt to make a live-action film announced in 2009.

Many of the voice actors and actresses would go on to have colorful careers in the industry, often becoming veterans and legends of their professions.

  • For example, Yoshiko Sakakibara would go on to be a voice actress in several Mobile Suit Gundam series with her prominent role being the antagonist Haman Karn in Zeta Gundam.
  • However, one of the main characters – Priscilla "Priss" Asagiri – was a favorite amongst the fans due to her unique voice and singing talents.
  • Her voice actress, Kinuko Oomori, was a rock band singer that did not continue her role as the main character accumulating to the disappointment of their fans due to her intentions of wanting to continue her career in the music industry.
  • Hence, subsequent sequels were represented by a different voice actress, Ryoko Tachikawa, who did not share the unique voice that Oomori has.

In 1991, Kinuko Oomori formed the rock band, SILK, with limited success. In 1994, she retired from the music industry entirely and has not been heard from since. Her only other roles in the anime industry were with the themes of three other anime series and that was taken from the songs she composed and sang during her time with SILK. Little information is known about her career afterward or what she did following the success of the BubbleGum Crisis. Fans were both curious and disappointed at the cancellation of the series as well as the departure of their favorite voice actress. 

With what was presented and released to the public, some information does not add up. The series itself was filled with controversy that never take off. This involves the fate of the series creator as well as Kinuko Oomori. With her popularity after the series, many expected her to continue her work in the entertainment industry which she did not, and that eventually made her fall into obscurity unlike the rest of the voice actresses who would go on to be in prominent anime films and series. There is the thought that Oomori caused the downfall of this beloved series due to her signing two contracts at once, but we can also point out the internal conflict that the two animation companies had as being a contributing factor as well. Overall, the series could have reached its potential if such challenges did not pull them down.

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