For the Love of… Anime

Where exactly do I begin when describing anime, Japanese animated cartoons? Heck, I think I will just dive right in to some of the greatest series I have seen.

Alright, at the top of the list is Wolf’s Rain. This amazing art-filled anime had a great story line along with some of my favoritest animals: Wolves! Main characters were established within the first two episodes of the series that broke my heart. Did I just say that? Well, I mean it. This series was amazing in that it made you fall in love with the characters and (SPOILERS!) made you absolutely depressed when they died in the end (though the ending did give the impression that maybe they continued to live in the new world?) (END SPOILER) Anyways, the story is that there is a place called Paradise, but the only ones who can find it and/or create it are wolves. MC Kiba is introduced in episode one, seemingly dying or just really tired from a long walk in the snow. His fur is pure white, and he has golden eyes. It is also established in the series that wolves can put on an illusion amongst humans to appear human themselves (but they can remain in wolf form too) Wolves put on these illusions because they were hunted many years in the past. My favorite character, and who would be considered the Beta wolf (Kiba being Alpha) is Tsume, a hard-looking badass who has an interesting X scar across his chest. This scar was reflected upon by the youngest wolf of the group, Toboe (in my opinion the most annoying until his badass moment in one of the last few episodes) but the scar was never really explained until Toboe’s (spoiler again) death, and Tsume, saddened, tells his dead body. (end spoiler again) This series was amazing, something I cuold easily watch again and again (probably why I bought the series on DVD). This series only had one season, airing only 30 episodes.

Now, moving along, another one of my favorite series is Witch Hunter Robin. Again, only a one season series, this one was only 26 episodes along. Now, only yesterday did I finally see the first five episodes of the series (odd, I know, but I initially only saw 6-14) and up to episode 21. Today, I just finished the last few episodes of the series. I was left depressed, not knowing the fate of my two favorite characters. Alright, let me rewind. I came upon this series while shipping at Big Lots one day. I was going through their DVDs when I happened across vol 2 and vol 3 of WHR. Well, naturally I search for vol 1, but no luck. Either way, I wasn’t about to let those DVDs pass, I mean, where else can you find $3 anime? (Don’t answer if that location is not in Arizona, please). Anyways, I watched the two DVDs, and found myself a little confused because the established characters, while badasses, I did not know what they were talking about. The story, finally, goes something like this: Witches are living all around the world. This story, set in Japan, is about an organization who is seeking to eliminate, or rather, capture Witches who are showing signs of magical powers. The MC, Robin, is a Witch Hunter, one with powers called “the Craft,” which are actually really close to what Witches do. (Spoiler!) In fact, it is revealed that “the Craft” is actually Witches power, but it has not yet been “Awakened.” (something like “The Covenant” movie. END SPOILER). Anyways, Robin is only 15 years old. Thank God there is no romance really in this series because my other favorite character, Amon, Robin’s supposed to be partner, would then be a frickin pedophile. Luckily, no romance, and me not having to like a pedophile. All is well. Anyways, the series takes a  little while to get going. Around the 14th episode, things start to come together, and the storyline really begins to unfold. I guess because this is so fresh on my mind that is why I am rambling on about this so much. I think I will just say: Reader, you need to watch Witch Hunter Robin and Wolf’s Rain. They have some great shit in there.

My next anime to get into is Chrono Crusade/ Chrno Crusade (they did it two different ways depending on which copy you bought) Now, CC started out as a manga (Japanese comic book) then escalated, as many manga do, to an anime. The reason I mention it here, in my “For the Love of… Anime” is because the anime and manga ended differently. That usually happens a lot, but whatever. Chrono is an amazing character. I love the fact that he is a seemingly innocent little boy, then transforms into a badass demon w/o horns. His partner, Rosette, is also an amazing character, a nun who hunts down demons, other than Chrono, and kill them in teh name of God. I love her because she has tied herself to Chrono, in that her life is cut in half because she and Chrono made a deal, and she basically controls how much power he uses. Now I won’t go into the real nitty gritty info, because it has been a good while since I’ve seen the anime, but just know that this is a powerful story that is worth reading and watching because there is such a vast difference as well as some great characters and stoyline.

I think I will now go into just anime in general. Anime is a great way to see some fantastic art and creation materials that look so realistic as they are playing on the screen. Anime, and by extension manga, all have some really great, really unique aspects to them. Unlike 95% of American animations, movies and so forth, anime and manga manage to make you love a character so much, and then they kill them off. Some series kill off a character, then bring them back to life later on, but not always. This makes the series that much more realistic and believeable. I think that is a main reason why so many people get into anime.

Another great thing about anime is the fact that Japan has been making some Live Action films, not only based on anime and manga, but on actual books as well. For example, Battle Royale is a very dark and twisted book (but one I rather much enjoy). It was created into a manga, and two Live Action films (one of the original work, then a spin-off which wasn’t half bad). Another LA was Death Note. This is another really dark series, one that the Japanese did a GREAT job of getting. Sure, they had to fix several of the scenes from what the manga/anime had, but it was an amazing job. Death Note was separated into two LA films, and one spin-off. It was dark, twisted, but was great work. Unfortunately, Americans seek to do a “better” job, like they always seem to do. Don’t get me wrong, I am an American, but there is no way in hell that an American version of a LA Death Note movie will be any good. They would change the entire plot, as they already mentioned, to saying that MC Light Yagami was being possessed by a devil ( not a death god/ shinigami) (also, that is, instead of being a cruel and sadistic bastard himself) and there was a promotional pic flying around the internet that Zac Efron (I really don’t care if I misspell that) would be playing Light. FUCK THAT SHIT! *sigh* Oh well, I am just glad I have the Japanese versions of DN to assuade me.

Well, I guess that is enough rambling for today. Wait until tomorrow for another addition of “For the Love of…”


~ by HelixRook on February 6, 2011.

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