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 lard pirates dawt cawm  §  Samurai Champloo in a Nutshell / by Spoony Spoonicus
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 ~Spoony Spoonicus on 11:04am 05/21/12 (02:30am 02/26/10) in 2h42m36s  §  6499 eyeballs
 chained to: Anime in a Nutshell  §  first - previous - next - latest
 Most anime, despite all you've been lead to believe, really really sucks.
 anchors: none.
It's derivative, uninteresting and badly written, but I guess that's to be expected when the only name of any merit in your show's credits is the guy who directed Bebop (another overrated, aimless show with no sense of identity!).

Mugen: Hi, I'm the protagonist of this show, and all I ever do is start fights with random people and kick their asses using my stupid breakdancing sword style, then brag about how awesome I am. Needless to say, you're going to be fucking sick of me by the end of the second episode. Also, the director apparently has a huge boner for Spike Spiegel, because I look exactly like him and even have the same voice actor.
Jin: I have no personality whatsoever. Despite this, I am the other protagonist. We must fight for no reason.

The battles are slow, drawn-out and animated at a constant 3 frames per second, which they desperately try to cover up by wobbling the camera all over the place throughout. But even if they were decently animated and lacked the cheap Braveheart shaky-cam effect, they'd still be boring because they all center on the most bland, forgettable protagonists in any anime, ever, and you simply don't care who wins or loses. And you'd best get used to this, because you're going to see at least two of them per episode from here on out.

Spoony: Honestly, if you want me to root for someone, give me a better reason than just "because he's the main character" or "he wants to be the best" (because that's not corny and cliched enough, not to mention a cheap excuse to stretch the show out indefinitely for more money). The audience needs a better character motive than "I just wander around and fight people because I can". That's not storytelling. Hell, that wouldn't even pass muster as a video game plot in the 70s.

Their fight gets interrupted when some ugly bastard burns down the building they're fighting in (again, for no adequately-explained reason) and they get blamed for it.

Fu: Even though they're dangerous, violent criminals who destroyed my workplace over a meaningless pissing contest, I decide to rescue them because nobody else will help me in my quest to find my father. Then all I have to do is find something to bitch about incessantly every single time I'm on camera, and I'm set! Oh, and you two aren't allowed to kill each other until this happens.
Mugen: You do realize we're just going to throw down anyway the second you turn your back, right?

At least one episode steals a script from Cowboy Bebop practically line for line, but aside from that absolutely nothing happens for most of the rest of the show; it's all just bland filler that has fuck-all to do with finding Fu's dad. You don't set up a plotline and then spend the next twenty episodes trying your very hardest to ignore it - that is terrible writing.

To try and offset this, the show paints the protagonists as some important, unwritten figures in history to make them seem more interesting.

Spoony: I hope they only lasting impact they have on history is as a textbook example of how NOT to write interesting characters. Now tell a fucking story; if I wanted to sit through hours of directionless, confused rambling that's desperately trying to sound "deep and meaningful", I'd read Time Cube.

As the show goes on, it only gets stupider and stupider. One episode features baseball. Yes, baseball. A game that wouldn't take form as we know it until the early nineteenth century, which this show is set roughly two hundred years before. And they're playing against a team of bad American stereotypes a good century before the United States of America was even founded. Wow. Can we do just a little research next time, please?

Spoony: When you make Inuyasha's take on ancient Japan look well researched and credible, you've seriously fucked up.

Another features guys beatboxing into a sword hilt and impromptu rapping.

Spoony: He's beatboxing into a fucking sword hilt. Beatboxing. Sword hilt. Why? Why would anyone, in the history of the world, ever beatbox into a fucking SWORD HILT? Seriously. I cannot begin to even articulate how completely and utterly stupid this all is. I can't even explain why I'm still watching it; it's so god damned boring and doesn't have a single unique idea or interesting character in it anywhere. Even the battles are about as exciting as watching moss grow.

On with the show. More coma-inducing fights ensue with a guy wielding a six-shot revolver (who gets built up as some enormous evil badass, only to die anticlimactically in a fight that lasts less than twenty seconds) and every quirky villain copied directly from every swordsman hero movie you've ever seen anywhere. It quickly becomes apparent that the only original fighting style in the entire show is Mugen's combination of break dance and ape spasm.

Spoony: The worst combination of anything since an unfunny Tim Allen sitcom and the Super Nintendo, I might add.

The last episode comes, and the crew, realizing that they spent the entire budget writing and animating filler while drinking heavily, have little choice but to hamfistedly resolve everything in the last fifteen minutes of the last episode. Fu finds her dad, he dies, Jin and Jerkoff duke it out, their swords break, they collapse on top of each other like the end of Rocky II. They both mumble about how they didn't want to kill each other anyway, then go their seperate ways. Hooray for another dull cop-out ending that doesn't satisfy on any level.

Spoony: If only Spike's obnoxious clone had died, this show may have had one redeeming factor. Two if it was a horrible, gory demise. Forget this crap.
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a cherry