Anime Today #22: Full Metal Alchemist and Gun X SwordPosted on: Friday, September 1, 2006
Episode run down:
Take a break from your back to school blues and pick up some of the latest hot titles in anime and manga. Then prepare to be stumped with the Uso Deshou mystery anime plot followed by Kris and Judy’s Anime and Gamer’s Guide to Japanese bathrooms. Next, the Dark Lord demands you turn your attention to his weekly specials and latest sale highlights. Finishing up her lessons on basic dinner terminology, Judy-sensei returns in her Mini Japanese 101 lesson followed up by Lisa Marie’s action-packed review of Gun X Sword. The Comic Party thinpak is set to be released on September 19th and the production team joins us with a quick Comic Party audio snippet. Nick’s back with the August contest winners and the new contests for September, and then Kris and Judy finish off this episode with a listener question about the longest running anime.
On September 26th, get ready for what Play Magazine says is “A heartfelt ending stuffed full of action sequences; This is what everyone loves about Fullmetal Alchemist and more!” Taking place two years after the last episode, The Fullmetal Alchemist Movie reunites the Elric Brothers to prevent ultimate catastrophe as the worlds of modern science and alchemy collide. Join Ed and Al once again as they battle the occult, ideological extremists and monstrous Homunculi lurking in the shadows.
Also on September 26th, Shinobu, Kaede, Onsokumaru and the ninjas are in for a crazy summer full of love potions, raging typhoons, and poisonous mushrooms! In the second nonsensical volume of ninja madness, Ninja Nonsense: Psychedelic Summer will leave you questioning your sanity! This show is sure to make your sides ache with its own special brand of cracked-out comedy!
The Prime Minister is taken into custody, but her removal from office is being kept secret in the 7th DVD of Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex 2nd Gig. While Aramaki and Togusa are working to get to her out and prevent a nuclear attack, the military begins its assault in Dejima. As the fighting breaks out, the Major and some of Section 9 are stuck in the middle when the Tachikomas detect a nuclear submarine just out of sensor range. Don’t miss the conclusion to this explosive second season on September 26th!
All hell has broken loose… the feast has begun, and the Band of the Hawks is what’s on the menu! As Guts witnesses his friends and comrades being slaughtered all around him, he feels himself being torn in two… half of him is horrified by the carnage… and the other half is enraged beyond imagination. On September 27th, check out the 13th graphic novel of Berserk that finishes the story covered in the Berserk anime!
During a bloody confrontation with a sadistic Soul Reaper, Uryu chooses a path that will temporarily grant him enormous power, but at great personal cost. Meanwhile, Ichigo races to master a powerful technique that will help him fight Byakuka and, hopefully, save Rukia from execution on October 3rd in the 15th graphic novel of Bleach.
Also on October 3rd, Mitsuki is trapped by the Lord of the Underworld and is imprisoned within his barrier in the 7th graphic novel of Full Moon O Sagashite. She pleads for Izumi to come help her, but the Shinigami is immobilized by his fear of releasing his last memory - the moment before his death - and will not rescue her. Is there anyone who can protect Mitsuki from the Death Master's scythe?
Finally on October 3rd, the passions of the past quickly reignite as one scroll seeks to undo two powerful tribes. Death is on the wind, and the storm continues unabated. As the darkness pervading the sky seeps into the souls of men, blood lingers in the rain and the flood is unleashed. No mercy will be spared to the enemy in the second DVD of Basilisk: The Spoils of War.
Preordering a copy of these great titles and more from RightStuf.com at least 10 days before their release dates can save you 25%! Add an additional 10% in savings by joining the Got Anime purchasing club for Frequent Buyers.
Anime and Gamer's Guide to Japan with Kris and Judy
Jutsu this and jutsu that, we've got our own jutsu this week! You can save big on DVDs and VHS from Viz Media! Whether it's great ninja titles like Flame of Recca and Naruto, or other great non-ninja titles like Bleach and Saikano, we've got you covered! Plus, what a great time to pick up those missing sets of Maison Ikkoku you’ve been thinking about! You know you want them.
From now until September 10th, 2006 - get at least 40% OFF the retail price on all Viz DVD and VHS titles! Just use the reusable coupon code JUTSU when you check out through our online store. Remember, this sale ends at 11:59pm central time on Sunday the 10th, so don’t delay in getting your order in - missing out on the savings is never a good thing. The sasuke ninjas will laugh at you.
Plus, if you're a Got Anime Member, you'll be pleased to find that your discount stacks! Extra savings are a good thing.
If you’re not sure what products are included, click on the "Viz Sale Items" graphic on the top right corner of our home page. This directs you to a list of all of the items included, so you can page through them at your leisure.
In my further attempts to tempt your wallet, this week I’ve got some extra special bargain priced bundles that just can’t be beat. Check out the great deals on bundles like the whole Cardcaptor Sakura Series - all 18 DVDs - for only $79.99 and a Disfunctional Daichis bundle for $29.98! You can own the whole series of Licensed by Royalty with the soundtrack for only $34.99, or all of Mahoromatic: Automatic Maiden with both soundtracks for $39.99. Bundles of 2 Tenchi series are also for the taking, with Tenchi in Tokyo for $59.99 and Tenchi Universe for only $49.99. Take advantage of these great deals while supplies last!
And that’s only the beginning - there are box sets galore on the specials this week, some at 50% or more off the retail price, and we have some items which are getting low on inventory, including some Zeta Gundam sets and a few great Jpop music CDs. And that doesn’t even include all of the stuff I’ve thrown into the bargain bin!
Shinobu, our resident apprentice ninja, has been instructing me a bit in her ninja skills. So I’m hoping my new Ninja Technique "Buy Anime" works on you. Check her out in Ninja Nonsense DVD 2, which streets September 26.
Marie's DVD Review: Gun X Sword
It may be time to head back to school, but the summer heat’s still here: both off and on your television screen. Nothing symbolizes summer quite like the action flick - hot action, hot fights and hot women – and Geneon’s GunxSword has them all.
GunxSword takes place on the Planet of Endless Illusion, where law is nearly absent and the ways of the wild, wild west live strong. The plot revolves around Van, who wields the title weapon gunxsword and seeks revenge on a mysterious clawed man for the murder of his bride. With him travels the young Wendy Garret, whose brother has been taken captive by the same clawed man. Together they chase down leads in town after town, often coming close, but always just missing their hated enemy before he escapes again. But the clawed man isn’t the only villain in this lawless landscape…
I had a lot of problems writing this review, mostly because every adjective I wanted to use was either “slick” or “cool.” But there really aren’t any two better words to describe, well, pretty much everything about GunxSword. Picture Cowboy Bebop’s flair transferred into a Trigun setting with a dash of atmosphere from the Rurouni Kenshin OVAs’ and you’ve got some idea what I’m talking about. It’s very, very slick and very, very cool.
The epitome of this blend comes out whenever Van is pushed past his breaking point and pulls out the heavy weaponry. Be prepared for a lot of guns, swords, guns crossed with swords and, sheerly for the coolness factor, giant robots equipped with – you guessed it! - guns and swords. The fight scenes are slickly animated and give off intense kinetic energy. A wide variety of enemies and techniques keep Van on his toes, and it’s when he’s dodging bullets that Van’s lanky character design looks at its best, taking on almost complete fluidity.
The settings for these action sequences also keep the fights fresh, with new locations and scenery to play off of every time. Van and Wendy’s journey naturally takes them through many different towns, and each one is completely conceptualized and uniquely put together. Some inhabitants are nicer than others, and some are a lot more psycho, but the only constant is that Van never stays put once he learns of the clawed man’s current location.
The music of GunxSword is also worth noting, as it perfectly sets the tone of the series. Blending jazz with traditional Japanese melodies, the score effortlessly matches and enhances both the atmosphere of rousing fights and melancholy angst of the characters. The opening theme encapsulates both moods at once, and if you need an excuse to listen to it again and again, Geneon has kept the various different original openings, which feature silhouettes that fill in throughout the series as new characters are introduced.
Of course, it’s hard to talk about GunxSword without mentioning fanservice poster-child Carmen99. The 99, after all, stands for her bust size, and Carmen99’s quite insistent you remember that. But for all her voluptuous curves and pants that don’t quite reach the top of her hips, she’s a great character in her own right, not to mention deadly with a garrote. The animators know where the line is, and, almost surprisingly these days, choose the side of good taste. The result is sexy without ever being trashy.
Carmen99’s not GunxSword’s only great character, either. Wendy is cute without being annoying, and makes herself useful on the journey whenever she can. Van defines cool when he’s battling it out with dozens of enemies at once, but slips quickly back into a melancholy world-weariness on the road, eased only by drenching his meals in as many condiments as possible. Other characters are introduced as the series goes on, each with their own distinctive weaponry and dark pasts.
It helps that almost the entire cast, outside of Wendy, is comprised of adults. While I love a high-school romance as much as the next girl, it’s nice to see characters in your own age bracket get a chance to star sometimes. It also lends the series a more mature emotional tone and understanding that’s only possible after the raging hormones of puberty have calmed down somewhat – not to mention that it definitely makes fighting in a giant robot a lot less traumatizing for the pilot.
GunxSword was obviously made with the action fan in mind, and they’ve hit their target right on the bullseye. Watch this one at your local anime club, with a group of friends, or even with your significant other so that when you start saying things like “Dude! That was sooo cool!” every thirty seconds there will be someone else in the room to agree with you and you won’t scare your cat.
See all Gun X Sword products
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Check out the Comic Party website!
Right Stuf Contests and Updates
Fans of the mega popular doglike half-demon Inu Yasha, get ready! Return to the dark recesses of Horai Island in our latest Inu Yasha Contest! At the end of September, one lucky winner will win an Inu Yasha prize package including the 4th Inu Yasha Movie: Fire on the Mystic Island, an Inu Yasha t-shrit (size Large) and an Inu Yasha action figure including his Tetsusaiga sword! See the Contests page for more details and good luck!
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Anime Today Q & A
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