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REVIEW: BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad DVD 1




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DemonEyesLeo



Joined: 20 Feb 2005
Posts: 844
Location: Japan
PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2007 11:58 pm Reply with quote
'Bout time there was a review of this volume, I've had it for months and the 3rd should be coming later this week.

I've said it before, this is now my #1 favorite series, and I haven't even finished it. Maybe it's my love of rock music, or maybe it's the characters, it could even be the realistic take on the whole coming of age thing. Either way, I think it's an incredible series.

About the review though, I disagree somewhat on Koyuki having latent talent, at least on the guitar. It would be one thing if he, when he first picks it up, is able to rip out some good riffs or learn them instantly (like other shows do); but he didn't, in fact he flat out sucked and sounded terrible. It was only through his teacher, and lots of practice, that he was able to get good enough to turn some heads at the community festival. That, to me at least, isn't really latent talent but more of another use of realism. But that's just my take on it.


Last edited by DemonEyesLeo on Mon Sep 24, 2007 12:18 am; edited 1 time in total
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Randall Miyashiro



Joined: 12 Jun 2003
Posts: 2451
Location: A block away from Golden Gate Park
PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 12:14 am Reply with quote
I had no idea that the director/series composition/storyboard/scenario/character designer/etc. of Beck was the same person who was the director/Script 1-12/series composition/storyboard/key animator/etc. for Paradise Kiss. This is really amazing since they are both fantastic series, yet so different. I guess it makes sense that he directed Orange Road (when he was 23!) which really was the coming of age show for my generation. I love those Yukari musical episodes as well as the rock band second OP credits for that series. Osamu Kobayashi is really amazing!

I think there was one point in the subs which seemed awkward where they refer to Zeppelin as The Zeppelin which sounds a bit odd.
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daedelus



Joined: 07 Apr 2007
Posts: 743
Location: Texas City, TX (ajd: 6/11/05)
PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 4:39 am Reply with quote
Ah yes, Beck! This show is unlike any other I have seen. I am sooo glad I attended a Beck panel almost a year ago, otherwise I probably would've written this show off. What a big mistake that would have been!

That moonlit poolside duet at the end of ep 5 was fantastic in the english dub. I also feel that the talent show performance that takes place just before that was pretty great too.

A great review for a great volume Cool
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Unholy_Nny



Joined: 22 Jun 2005
Posts: 622
PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 11:49 am Reply with quote
I watched BECK fansubbed way back when, and it is one of my favorite series... I picked up vol. 1 with that kick-ass artbox shaped like an amp. Coolest artbox I've ever seen. (Totally tops the others I ranked high, being Haruhi and My-Hime)
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ddojo



Joined: 16 Mar 2005
Posts: 10
PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 12:28 pm Reply with quote
I'm so glad this finally got reviewed! Please review the rest of the volumes!! They deserve to be reviewed too!

This is one of my all time favorite animes - if not THEall-time favorite. It's one of maybe two or three shows that I've actually been able to connect to. I feel what the characters feel. I think everyone should at least give it a shot.
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kyokun703



Joined: 06 Jan 2005
Posts: 2503
Location: Orgrimmar
PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 1:55 pm Reply with quote
I've been leery of watching this, having been irritated by other "band" anime--Gravitation and Aquarian Age are two that I've watched. I get tired of the same bad song playing over and over again. Is Beck like this, or do they change up the band songs to provide more variety? I must admit, the extremely positive reactions from the forum posters have made me curious.
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Unholy_Nny



Joined: 22 Jun 2005
Posts: 622
PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 5:26 pm Reply with quote
They don't really play much music as far as I remember, there is some but it's not an all the time thing. Only song I can remember occurring more than two or so times is "Full Moon Sway", but that song is so freakin' awesome you'll never get sick of it >_<

Then there's the opening theme. Greatest opening theme ever.

EDIT: ">_<" is a smiley? But I hate that smiley! *edits post to disable smilies*
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kizzmequik_74



Joined: 06 May 2007
Posts: 302
Location: QC, Philippines
PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 10:32 pm Reply with quote
kyokun703 wrote:
I get tired of the same bad song playing over and over again. Is Beck like this, or do they change up the band songs to provide more variety?


Hmm.. 'Bad'-ness is subjective, after all, but for the most part, if you like the genre of music the songs fall into (rapcore/rap-metal; vanilla J-rock), you'd probably like the songs. And, if you like the songs, well, variety isn't too much of a problem, then. Also, the Engrish singing was supposedly cleaned up for this release, so that's another sticking point dealt with.

About variety, Beck itself performs a total of seven songs over the entire series, but for most of the first third (?) of the series, they stick with two to three songs. They kinda 'power-up' (fufufufu..) with a new song every couple of episodes, so it really doesn't get that grating. Plus, there are some insert songs that are quite nice.
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Randall Miyashiro



Joined: 12 Jun 2003
Posts: 2451
Location: A block away from Golden Gate Park
PostPosted: Mon Sep 24, 2007 11:12 pm Reply with quote
kyokun703 wrote:
I've been leery of watching this, having been irritated by other "band" anime--Gravitation and Aquarian Age are two that I've watched. I get tired of the same bad song playing over and over again. Is Beck like this, or do they change up the band songs to provide more variety? I must admit, the extremely positive reactions from the forum posters have made me curious.


I really thought Aquarian Age was disappointing. It had that "Pokemon" feel to it with all of the random combats inserted in. The band in Aquarian took a back seat to the sf elements. We really don't get much insight into the other band members in the series since the focus is not in the music.

I never understood the overwhelming appeal in Gravitation, although it would be far more akin to Beck compared to Aquarian Age. In comparison Gravitation (much like the amazing To-Y manga) focuses more on the industry with much of the focus revolving around the main characters' relationship with the band and breaking into the mainstream scene. This is where it (as of the third DVD) diverges from Beck which focuses more on the main character's dynamics with the music itself instead of the celebrity status of a rock star which Gravitation seemed to be tied up with.

I really think that the music in Beck is much better than the other two shows you mentioned.
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Josh7289



Joined: 27 Aug 2005
Posts: 1252
PostPosted: Tue Sep 25, 2007 9:32 pm Reply with quote
Unholy_Nny wrote:
Then there's the opening theme. Greatest opening theme ever.
This is quite possibly a fact.

Beck is freaking awesome. I rented the first DVD and watched it last weekend. I'm going to see the second one this weekend, and the third during the weekend after that. I don't know a whole lot about music or the people involved in it, but I still love the show. It's just really, really good. One of the top anime I've ever seen.
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fgpmatze



Joined: 07 Oct 2007
Posts: 1
PostPosted: Sun Oct 07, 2007 1:03 pm Reply with quote
I'm also waiting for the next reviews since Beck really deserves it. It's a great series, I could watch it over and over again(well, probably I'm the only one:P). And I hope there will be a second season, I've read the manga and the story is getting really awesome I think.
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mithrinwow



Joined: 01 Jul 2007
Posts: 4
PostPosted: Tue Oct 30, 2007 10:34 am Reply with quote
Randall Miyashiro wrote:

In comparison Gravitation (much like the amazing To-Y manga) focuses more on the industry with much of the focus revolving around the main characters' relationship with the band and breaking into the mainstream scene.


Where did you get your hands on the To-Y manga? I can't find it for the life of me. I heard that it's not being produced anymore, so it's really hard to find. I loved the OVA though but it's also just a summary of the manga.
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Randall Miyashiro



Joined: 12 Jun 2003
Posts: 2451
Location: A block away from Golden Gate Park
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2007 2:04 am Reply with quote
mithrinwow wrote:

Where did you get your hands on the To-Y manga? I can't find it for the life of me. I heard that it's not being produced anymore, so it's really hard to find. I loved the OVA though but it's also just a summary of the manga.


I originally borrowed my friend's copies as they were being released in the 80s. In 1991 Shonen Sunday compiled them into 5 oversized volumes which were at a mere 680 yen each so I picked them up. They are the size of Business Jump, Wings, Nora Comics, as opposed to the smaller Shonen Jump or Shonen Sunday dimensions.
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