Seiya (Knights of the Zodiac)
it worth anyone's time is actually a silly question I should
sometimes be asking myself. But to be blunt, this is an awesome
series that really captivated me when introduced to it in
the late 80's.
shows like G.I.Joe, Transformers, Battle of the
Planets and Robotech, there was definitely a standout
that touched that odd mystical whimsical child within, and
Saint Saiya (known in the U.S. as Knights of the
Zodiac) was that one. Borrowing heavily from Greek mythology,
it is set in an earth that will be soon consumed by evil.
Some children are taught the art of fighting, and are then
taken to the holy land in Greece to fight for cloths, and
bring their nation pride in having a saint. Although the beginning
of this series contradicts itself in terms of ideals, and
doesn't follow the rules it sets up when you are introduced
to it, eventually it all irons out, and with an eye closed
it makes a case for good imagination and meaningful friendships.
Placing men as gods, and gods fighting amongst themselves
to reign as supreme beings for a greater good, or evil. In
the end, man's fate lies within man.
are introduced to Pegasus, Dragon, Andromeda, Cygnus, and
the rest, they are all fighting in a tournament to win the
prized possession of the Golden Cloth of Sagittarius. However,
Pegasus must be coerced into fighting in this tournament by
a young lady named Saori Kido (Siena). As these Saints, along
with many others, battle for the golden cloth, it is surprisingly
stolen from the owners. The next chapter begins in finding
it and returning it, which then ends with the series jumping
from one plot to the next quite quickly. Once you think you
know what is going to happen next, it doesn't, and a new adventure
is quickly added that lends itself to the many subplots and
eventually the overall plot. It draws out like the Dragonball
Anime, it may be confusing to you at first, but do yourself
a favor. Look for a subtitled version, and don't let the poorly
dubbed American version cloud your first time judgment. Catching
a glimpse of it on US TV is quite disturbing, and they probably
would have had a better result giving it to 12 year olds that
actually cared, and maybe, just maybe, allowed for some dynamic
voices instead of everyone sounding like Ash Catchem or constipated.
never say "dude" or "bozo" but maybe this
is what mainstream America perceives Anime to be, in which
case it is a wonder why it is doing so well. Sometimes one
wishes they would give some of these classics some respect,
but instead it's turned into a joke. Saint Seiya has
already played in Europe, Africa, and Asia, and the fandom
is strong, but unfortunately its popularity is short-lived
soon after it goes off the air. In the anime genre, not many
In a far
future, aliens have invaded earth, but have successfully been
driven back to their home world. Many years have passed and
the aliens are slowly gaining momentum in their chance to
regain the upper hand on Earth's battlegrounds, by being able
to advance their fighter jets to match or surpass Earth's
very own state of the art flying machines. Yukikaze is the
best man-operated jet known to exist, and is driven in its
core by artificial intelligence. While the pilot Ray and his
lieutenant Jack are dealing with their own issues, the fight
has called for the creation of an unmanned fighter. Now the
question is, Will that turn the tides? And who are these aliens
Earth has been fighting against all this time?
a huge success, rivaling Ghost in the Shell in its
art and animation style, Bandai announced during the San Diego
Comic Con that this will be released sometime in 2004. Yukikaze's
trailer is amazingly done, and full of high octane fighter
jet action. It's a decent science fiction thriller about the
unknown fears of A.I. and invasion from unknown forces.
though, the real meat doesn't show until the middle of the
series, dragging you along the first couple of stories with
not much to look forward to other than the dogfights. Character
development is a tad boring, as Jack and Ray are friends,
but Jack is putting more effort into their friendship than
Ray is. It is pounded in pretty bluntly and doesn't really
flow, but it is understandable that they need story interactions
between people. It just doesn't work well.
developers' credit, though, they do get better, and you get
used to the story telling once you watch the next two episodes.
Which is again the problem with Anime, if you can watch them
all together at once or consecutively it's a really great
thing to do, but Yukikaze is not one you can watch
a single episode and appreciate, and you probably need a DVD
or video to rewind when you missed something.
another perspective, where you stand on the 3D anime style
modeling is where this series will truly make or break it.
If you like your ships to have the highest detail and a consistent
look, then this is for you. But I will have to nag at the
creative team for using way too many different styles of rendering.
It actually is not consistent.
scenes it's really fluid, and has a truly precise hand-animated
style, but then cuts to a sunset shot where the camera rotates
around the Yukikaze as if it's a boring screen saver. Then
the next dogfight looks obviously 3D generated, almost movie
quality and not animation, then on the landing strip the black
outlines are totally overdone.
of consistency is as apparent in the style as in the mood,
leaving you either really eating it up, or tossing it aside
depending where your expectations are. I was expecting much
after watching the trailer. Alas, it crashed but not necessarily
skeptical at first I wasn't sure what to think about the Naruto
series, and for good reason.
does it appear as a manga in Shonen Jump, but the orange
jumpsuit, blue boots, and yellow hair sure did remind me of
another character with similar attributes. Finally I succumbed
to pressure and checked it out, and it is not a disappointment.
I am going to go out on a limb here and say that if a story
is made for TV, it's usually not as thought out as it would
have been in manga form. Manga (the Japanese version of US
comic books) have runtimes of several years of short story
telling, that usually have to be comprehensible if any given
issue is the first you pick up. Hence the Japanese CRAZE in
their series for repetitive intros.
is no exception, and swallows its viewers right in from the
start. With some classic comedy and life lessons intertwined
into an awkward world where Ninjas are a country's army, and
the four Hokage's faces are modeled into the mountain like
Mount Rushmore, TVs and scrolls have equal importance, and
every ninja seems to wear patented toeless boots, it is hard
not to let this story take you away
Did I forget to
do my intro? I'll keep it short.
tailed demon attacks Konoha village (Leaf Village), and the
fourth Hokage (Ninja Master) saves everyone by sealing the
demon in a newborn's belly, but dies performing this act,
hence Naruto grows up wanting attention by the villagers.
For Naruto, though, that wish may never come true since most
of the villagers consider the boy to be the demon himself
since it is sealed within his body. Our hero does not know
this fact yet, but it doesn't stop him from aspiring to be
the next Hokage anyway and become a world famous Ninja.
he has to complete the training, pass the academy test, and
complete mission after mission in order to be recognized as
a Ninja. Along the path he takes he must eventually battle
Ninjas from other countries which all have abilities of their
respective nations, like Water country, Sound Country and
so forth. Naruto's abilities are becoming stronger, and although
to many he is a bumbling idiot, he tends to bumble the right
way with the help of his sensei and friends.
think there is an air date for it in the United States, but
it is obtainable. As Japan has only just aired episode 44
as of this writing and the manga is still going strong, it
may be a while before it hits US markets, and we all hope
they cast some decent voiceover actors and directors to cross
it over the ocean.
Kishimoto definitely has a runaway hit, and spares no time
when describing Ninja tactics in this world where as you move
along. On the surface, there are interesting points about
how mutant abilities or "Blood Lines" make you a
better Ninja. The ultimate battles, though, occur through
secret/not so secret crushes, love rivals and friends, where
the comedy truly makes its mark as Naruto is an annoying guy,
really, that is full of himself. His love for Sakura is rivaled
for her crush on Sasuke, who doesn't care about anything but
his own destiny. Ino is Sakura's rival because she has a crush
on Sasuke also. Kakashi Sensei is of course the coolest instructor
on the planet with a little bit of dry humor, but don't let
that fool you as Kakashi's rival is all too funny, and Lee
Rock's love for Sakura is of course Naruto's biggest concern.
Did I mention a turtle Ninja master?
do catch the anime series, it is advised you know Japanese,
because no one has really subtitled it well at all, and you
may just have to wait for it on DVD here for you to truly
appreciate it. Still, I highly recommend this title.