The story is set in a futuristic and peaceful world made possible thanks to the invention of the Manifestation Engine (示現エンジン, Jigen Enjin), a powerful engine that creates energy from the sky and helped to prevent an energy crisis five years prior. On the island of Izu Ōshima, Akane Isshiki lives a peaceful life with her family. When the world is threatened by an alien force known as the Alone (アローン, Arōn), Akane is given a special key by her grandfather, Kenjirou, which allows her to access the Vivid System (ビビッドシステム, Bibiddo Shisutemu) and don the Palette Suits (パレットスーツ, Paretto Sūtsu), granting her special powers. Joined by her friends Aoi, Wakaba and Himawari, Akane fights to protect the world from the Alone.Akane Isshiki (一色 あかね, Isshiki Akane)
Voiced by: Ayane Sakura
Akane is the protagonist. She is a second-year in junior high school who is living together with her little sister and grandfather in Izu Oshima. She works many part-time jobs to support her family in place of her mother and rides the world's only flying bike that was made by her grandfather. Bright, energetic, honest and very athletic, she does have an odd habit of putting mayonnaise on anything she eats. She is given the power to transform using the Vivid System, where she is adorned in red. Her main weapon is a boomerang called the Naked Rang (ネイキッドラング, Neikiddo Rangu)
. She has the ability to 'dock' with other Vivid users in order to become more powerful forms, activated by each girl kissing her on the forehead. She previously had a fear of heights following a factory explosion which killed her father and hospitalized her mother, but she overcame it in order to save Aoi.
Aoi Futaba (二葉 あおい, Futaba Aoi)
Voiced by: Rie Murakawa
Aoi is Akane's classmate and best friend. She comes to Oshima from Blue Island for medical treatment. She is the daughter of a wealthy family, and her parents are often too busy to visit Oshima. She gains access to the Vivid System around the same time as Akane, her color being blue. Her main weapon is a rocket powered hammer known as the Naked Impact (ネイキッドインパクト, Neikiddo Inpakuto)
. When docked with Akane, they combine into Vivid Blue (ビビッドブルー, Bibiddo Burū)
, possessing a powerful hammer several times the size of Aoi's Naked Impact. She was also able to use the Naked Rang as a jetpack after Akane was rendered unconscious by an Alone attack.
Wakaba Saegusa (三枝 わかば, Saegusa Wakaba)
Voiced by: Yuka Ōtsubo
Wakaba is a determined sword fighter and captain of New Oshima Academy's Female Kendo Club. She is also a classmate of Akane's and is the president of her class. She is competitive and hates to lose, but she also loves cute things, most often shown by her doting on Momo and Himawari. She is a bit awkward because of her earnestness, and she often draws the short straw. She gains access to the Vivid System after resolving to fight alongside Akane, her color being green. Her main weapon is a sword known as the Naked Blade (ネイキッドブレード, Neikiddo Burēdo)
. When docked with Akane, they combine into Vivid Green (ビビッドグリーン, Bibiddo Gurīn)
, able to increase the size of Wakaba's Naked Blade.
Himawari Shinomiya (四宮 ひまわり, Shinomiya Himawari)
Voiced by: Aya Uchida
Himawari is a brilliant hacker and one of Akane's classmates. Following an incident when she was betrayed by a friend, she withdrew to her room and stopped coming to school, instead using a robotic camera to view classes. However, she soon starts coming back to classes after Akane helps her save a power plant, during which she gains access to the Vivid System, her color being yellow. She has a case of anthrophobia, and does not pay any attention to fashion or her appearance. She is a super hacker who favorites PCs and machines, enjoys factoryscapes and admires Kenjirou's work (hence her understanding of the Vivid System). Her main weapon is a set of remote controlled drones known as the Naked Collider (ネイキッドコライダー, Neikiddo Koraidā)
that provide various functions such as creating reflective shields. When docked with Akane, they become Vivid Yellow (ビビッドイェロー, Bibiddo Yerō)
, making Himawari's Naked Collider more advanced.
Rei Kuroki (黒騎 れい, Kuroki Rei)
Voiced by: Maaya Uchida
Rei is a quiet girl in Akane's class who is often alone and does not speak to others except for class. She does however like animals and owns a parakeet named Piisuke. She comes from another world that was allegedly obliterated, along with her parents. She is approached by a mysterious black crow who allegedly promises her that she would be able to restore her world if she assists the Alone in destroying the Manifestation Engine. She possesses a black winged bow which she uses to fire glowing arrows into the Alone, giving them more powerful forms. She bears a mark of feathers on her neck, which indicates how many arrows she can fire, and she will allegedly disappear when she uses her last arrow. She also carries around a key that she considers very important. After Akane saves Rei from the grasps of the crow, she docks with her to become Vivid Red (ビビッドレッド, Bibiddo Reddo)
Momo Isshiki (一色 もも, Isshiki Momo)
Voiced by: Asuka Ōgame
Momo is Akane's little sister. She is a fifth grader, and the one in charge of the Isshiki family finances. She is a reliable girl who is great at cooking, and always backs up her sister, often worrying when she goes into action.
Kenjirō Isshiki (一色 健次郎, Isshiki Kenjirō)
Voiced by: Masaki Terasoma
Kenjirō is Akane and Momo's grandfather and self-proclaimed mad scientist. He is one of the developers of the Manifestation Engine, but now he keeps a research lab in Izu Oshima and focuses on his inventions. He pours most of his money into his research, which is one reason why the Isshiki family is poor. He has stated that whilst he does own various patents, he chooses not to profit from them as atonement for the accident that occurred seven years ago. He is the developer of the Vivid System, which allows Akane and the others to fight against the Alone. However, as the result of an explosion that occurred upon completing the experiment, his mind has been transferred to the body of a stuffed otter named Uso-kun (うそくん)
, with his human body kept in the fridge for preservation.
Mizuha Amagi (天城 みずは, Amagi Mizuha)
Voiced by: Haruka Yamazaki
Mizuha is an officer of the National Defense Forces who becomes the homeroom teacher for Akane and the others.
Yūri Shijō (紫条 悠里, Shijō Yūri)
Voiced by: Mika Doi
Yūri is the management bureau head for the Manifestation Engine.
Mashiro Isshiki (一色 ましろ, Isshiki Mashiro)
Voiced by: Sakura Nakamura
Mashiro is Akane and Momo's mother who is currently hospitalized following a factory explosion seven years ago.
Crow (カラス, Karasu)
Voiced by: Mie Sonozaki
She acts as an intermediary between the Alone and Rei, who she manipulates into assisting the Alone in targeting the Manifestation Engine with the promises of restoring her destroyed world and reuniting her with her parents. She often punishes Rei for interacting with humans. In the last two episodes she transforms into an ultimate Alone, Fallen Angel.
Alone (アローン, Arōn)
The Alone are a mysterious alien force from another dimension that takes many different forms and whose mission is to destroy the Manifestation Engine which, due to it providing 95% of the world's energy, will send the world into chaos if destroyed. When shot with arrows created by Rei, they can evolve into more powerful forms that are tougher to defeat, often aided with electromagnetism. All Alone are capable of firing red lasers from around their body. The Alone are often mechanical or resemble sediments, usually based on basic abstract imagery.
A four-panel comic strip manga series, illustrated by Kotamaru and titled Vividred Operation: The 4koma Viviop (ビビッドレッド・オペレーション The 4コマ びびおぺ, Bibiddoreddo Operēshon: Za Yonkoma Bibiope), was serialized between the November 2012 and May 2014 issues of ASCII Media Works' Dengeki G's Magazine. The first tankōbon volume was released on July 27, 2013; the second volume was released on May 27, 2014. A second manga, illustrated by Keito Koume and titled Vividred Operation, was serialized between the May 2013 and April 2014 issues of Dengeki G's Magazine. Two volumes, the first containing chapters published before the serialization, were released between February 27, 2013 and April 26, 2014.
The anime series, produced by A-1 Pictures, aired in Japan between January 11 and March 29, 2013 and was simulcast on Crunchyroll and Hulu. The series is directed by Kazuhiro Takamura, who had also worked on Strike Witches, and is written by Hiroyuki Yoshino, with character designs by Takamura. Hidari and Redjuice (a member of Supercell) handled the show's concept design. The series was released on six Blu-ray Disc and DVD compilation volumes in Japan between March 27 and August 28, 2013. Aniplex of America released the series on subtitled DVD in North America on December 17, 2013.
The series makes use of six pieces of theme music: one opening theme and five ending themes. The opening theme is "Energy" by Earthmind. The first four ending themes are used for one episode each: "We Are One" by Ayane Sakura and Rie Murakawa for episode two, "Stereo Colors" by Ayane Sakura and Yuka Ōtsubo for episode three, "Stray Sheep Story" by Ayane Sakura and Aya Uchida for episode four, and "Arifureta Shiawase" (ありふれたしあわせ, "Everyday Happiness") by Maaya Uchida for episode five. The fifth ending theme, "Vivid Shining Sky" by Ayane Sakura, Rie Murakawa, Yuka Ōtsubo, Aya Uchida and Maaya Uchida, is used for episode six and onwards.
A video game developed by Banpresto, Vividred Operation: Hyper Intimate Power, was released by Bandai Namco Games for the PlayStation 3 via the PlayStation Network on June 20, 2013. A minigame titled Vividred Operation: Akane to Mayo-tto Operation! (ビビッドレッド・オペレーション あかねとマヨっとオペレーション!, Vividred Operation: Mayonnaise Operation with Akane!) was released on the PlayStation Network on March 28, 2013.
Carl Kimlinger of Anime News Network gave Vividred Operation a B+ based on the first six episodes, saying, "The series' execution makes it easy to enjoy the story's strengths and hard to hold its many, many weaknesses against it." Dan Barnett of UK Anime Network gave the first three episodes an 8 out of 10, calling it "not to be missed", although he noted that "Vividred can't seem to decide what kind of an audience it's going for and has instead diluted the experience by trying to go for all of them at once. The show sits in a bit of an odd place where it'll be too tame for the majority of the audience who loved Strike Witches, yet at the same time it's still too racy and male-friendly to appeal to the young girls who are traditionally the audience for magical girl shows."