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REVIEW: Samurai Champloo DVD 1


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Kenshin5000



Joined: 27 Jul 2003
Posts: 39
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2005 9:37 am Reply with quote
Hate to be a prickler for accuracy, but the review confused Shinichiro Watanabe, the director of Bebop, with Nabeshin, whose real name is Shinichi Watanabe.

I mixed the two of them up myself for a while.

Here's Shinichiro: person#774

And here's Nabeshin: person#512

As cool as he is, Shinichiro Watanabe didn't direct Excel Saga.
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Predatel



Joined: 24 Sep 2004
Posts: 1
Location: Mahwah, NJ
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2005 10:08 am Reply with quote
Its dood that someone already noticed that...
Is it my observation or do all great anime directors have Watanabe as a sirname Wink?

Those guys r both great, maybe the best action and comedy directors out there, and Cowboy Bebop and Excel Saga are my favourite 2 shows... but no relation between them other than the parody of Julia's death in episode 3 of Excel Saga... man I just love that one, especially the opening....

Damn now I have to go watch Excel saga again Smile
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DriftRoot



Joined: 20 Jun 2003
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2005 10:59 am Reply with quote
Phew, good, someone else noticed the error. For a second I thought I was the one mistaken.

Regarding plot development - that's questionable. I'm pretty far along in Champloo and, aside from some impressive serious character development, the plot is suffering. But maybe that's what this series will turn out to be - a brilliant "portrait of a hip hop killer threesome" rather than a dramatic, comedy-laced spoiler[I must find my father who abandoned me]story.

Right now I'm betting it's the character development Watanabe is going for, not the storyline, because it's only just barely there if you're talking about the quest for the sunflower samurai.
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Tempest
I Run this place.
ANN Publisher & CEO


Joined: 29 Dec 2001
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2005 11:20 am Reply with quote
Embarassed

This is my fault. I'm supposed to read over reviews before I post them, but I was... lazy this morning.

Wish I could sweep this one under the carpet, but we don't believe in doing that at ANN.

-t
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Kazuki-san



Joined: 21 May 2004
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2005 11:32 am Reply with quote
DriftRoot wrote:

Right now I'm betting it's the character development Watanabe is going for, not the storyline, because it's only just barely there if you're talking about the quest for the sunflower samurai.


While I like Champloo, it has irked me that it started off by proclaiming that they were looking for the Sunflower Samurai, and then pretty much have no eps that had anything to do with that since. Bebop was pretty episodic too, but it still had eps scattered in between that had something to do with the main plot.
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ashram12



Joined: 29 Mar 2002
Posts: 86
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2005 12:06 pm Reply with quote
I have a comment regarding the time Samurai Champloo takes place. It doesn't take place in the Meiji era, but the Edo era, I believe it's mentioned quite a bit in the series.
Besides that, I've been wondering when the series exactly takes place. Personally, I'm leaning towards the early 17th century for two reasons.
First, they mention in the series that it is illegal for japanese people to leave Japan, and likewise illegal for foreigners to go into Japan. Secondly one episode deals with the Dutch East India Company who were the only European company allowed to trade with Japan, and that company was dissolved in 1799 (while they became Japan's only european trade partners in 1637).
Secondly later in the series they also mention how Christians are persecuted. There is one character who claims to be the Great Grandson of the jesuit Francis Xavier (1506-1552), so in my mind that would place the current storyline in the early 18th century.
Not that any of this really matters of course given all the anachronistic elements of the story.
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Shiki MSHTS



Joined: 10 Jul 2003
Posts: 738
Location: NoVA
PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2005 1:12 pm Reply with quote
ashram12 wrote:
I have a comment regarding the time Samurai Champloo takes place. It doesn't take place in the Meiji era, but the Edo era, I believe it's mentioned quite a bit in the series.
Besides that, I've been wondering when the series exactly takes place. Personally, I'm leaning towards the early 17th century for two reasons.
First, they mention in the series that it is illegal for japanese people to leave Japan, and likewise illegal for foreigners to go into Japan. Secondly one episode deals with the Dutch East India Company who were the only European company allowed to trade with Japan, and that company was dissolved in 1799 (while they became Japan's only european trade partners in 1637).
Secondly later in the series they also mention how Christians are persecuted. There is one character who claims to be the Great Grandson of the jesuit Francis Xavier (1506-1552), so in my mind that would place the current storyline in the early 18th century.
Not that any of this really matters of course given all the anachronistic elements of the story.


Indeed. Historical accuracy isn't really very important in this series. =P

Anyway, I think the review hits (at least the first DVD) right on. The action is very much quite fluid, without ever going to vomit inducing levels. I like the flow of the series so far, as it doesn't really try to be anything it really isn't, which is a good thing for the most part.
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Key
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2005 6:23 pm Reply with quote
My apologies also for the slip-up on the directors. Those names are just too similar, and I got thrown by the fact that the series does stylistically resemble Cowboy Bebop quite a bit.

As for the dating of the series, are we sure it was set during the Edo period? I had the very distinct impression while watching the series that it was set later, hence my review comments.

Ugh. Well, I'll strive for better fact-checking on my own part in future reviews.
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Necros Antiquor



Joined: 10 Nov 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2005 12:05 am Reply with quote
Kazuki-san wrote:
DriftRoot wrote:

Right now I'm betting it's the character development Watanabe is going for, not the storyline, because it's only just barely there if you're talking about the quest for the sunflower samurai.


While I like Champloo, it has irked me that it started off by proclaiming that they were looking for the Sunflower Samurai, and then pretty much have no eps that had anything to do with that since. Bebop was pretty episodic too, but it still had eps scattered in between that had something to do with the main plot.

I definately agree with you about the episodic nature of shows like this. Cowboy Bebop had nearly no overall plot at all, and it did well with stand-alone episodes. (Speaking of stand-alone episodes, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex does well with mostly stand-alone episodes as well.) In Bebop, the only plot progression in the early episodes was that Spike and Jet got a dog, a woman, and a girl with them on the Bebop. Vicious showed up a couple of times in the series, and then the last couple of episodes were somewhat connected. However, Cowboy Bebop is still a great show. Here's another example of good stand-alone episodes that just popped into my mind: Trigun's early episodes before spoiler[Monev the Gale and the other Gung Ho Guns began showing up].
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darkhunter



Joined: 13 May 2004
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2005 12:10 am Reply with quote
Episode 3 and 4 were interconnected, so that's like an arc in itself. Most anime even kenshin, are episodic. Kenshin fights one guy, then fight another guy, then fight another, even if it's 2 or 3 episode. He's not facing the same guy over and overa gain thoughout the whole series (even though that same guy can appear in later episode). You can also say episode 1 and 2 of Champloo are link because spoiler[ of the villian, wanting revenge]. People are expecting one huge overall plot, then Samurai 7 or Twelve Kingdom would be a better choice.

Oh yeah, lets not forge the infamous Azumanga, inwhich the story is nonexistent, but is really popular among fans.
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Shiki MSHTS



Joined: 10 Jul 2003
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2005 5:23 pm Reply with quote
darkhunter wrote:
You can also say episode 1 and 2 of Champloo are link because spoiler[ of the villian, wanting revenge].


If things can be linked that easily, then pratically all the episodes are "linked" because they have the same cast and all.

Episode 2 works pretty much as a stand alone episode, dispite the fact that a recurring character shows up. In short, it would make a decent amount of sense if viewed without knowledge of the other episodes.

Episodes 3 & 4 are more so linked, seeing as it follows a short two part story which continue into each other. But I think overall, the series is mainly comprised of stand alone episodes (though I haven't seen anymore of the series, it's basically just assumption).[/quote]
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Pepperidge



Joined: 13 Sep 2003
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 12, 2005 9:23 pm Reply with quote
Key wrote:
My apologies also for the slip-up on the directors. Those names are just too similar, and I got thrown by the fact that the series does stylistically resemble Cowboy Bebop quite a bit.

As for the dating of the series, are we sure it was set during the Edo period? I had the very distinct impression while watching the series that it was set later, hence my review comments.

Ugh. Well, I'll strive for better fact-checking on my own part in future reviews.


Umm, but it is directed by the Cowboy Bebop guy...
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Key
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2005 9:51 pm Reply with quote
Pepperidge wrote:
Key wrote:
My apologies also for the slip-up on the directors. Those names are just too similar, and I got thrown by the fact that the series does stylistically resemble Cowboy Bebop quite a bit.

As for the dating of the series, are we sure it was set during the Edo period? I had the very distinct impression while watching the series that it was set later, hence my review comments.

Ugh. Well, I'll strive for better fact-checking on my own part in future reviews.


Umm, but it is directed by the Cowboy Bebop guy...


Okay, so I'm getting the Bebop guy confused with the Excel Saga guy.

Hmmm, maybe I'll just avoid refering to what directors have done in the past in future reviews. . . naaaah! Razz It's good to see that fans are paying close enough attention to notice when we slip up.
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HayabusaUF



Joined: 17 Jul 2004
Posts: 5
Location: Jacksonville, FL
PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2005 8:02 am Reply with quote
We have it nice. Poor buggers in Japan only get two episodes per DVD. And it costs them 6,090 yen ($57.98 US, with the current exchange rate). Shocked
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cyrax777



Joined: 05 Mar 2003
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Location: the desert
PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2005 2:11 pm Reply with quote
well i can state that the last 3 eps are deffinatly connected.

Ending was satisfying and thats all im going to say.

edit to add before anyone bitchs yes I am buying the offical r1 dvds as they come out.
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