Friday, November 12, 2010

So, I've been watching a pile of anime DVDs I accumulated over the last month or so. There's been other things to do, so I've got a bit of a backlog. And there's a lot of good stuff - Xam'd is hipper and weirder than I expected, as if somebody set the creative staff of Eureka 7 loose in an erzatz variant on Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind and told them to touch on biological terror-weapons, suicide bombers, and squeeze in schoolgirls when they had the chance. BONES can usually be relied upon to produce something pretty, if not necessarily something coherent. The only complaint I have with it is that the sound is so aggressively stereophonic that it exceeds the rather primitive capabilities of my current TV-watching setup, and every ninth or tenth line is delivered to a speaker I don't have set up. Very disconcerting when you get a subtitle but no actual audible words behind it.

But the single craziest thing I've seen all month is an episode from the new Dirty Pair TV set released this week from Noizumi. Now, Dirty Pair's always been known for its bunny girls, and the petty trademark squabbles with Playboy that dogged the franchise in Studio Nue's attempts to sell into the North American market. The Japanese just love bunny girls, and the Hefnerites don't like to share their toys. But I've never seen... this. Bunny boys? The crazy thing is that this is where that episode *starts* - it gets weirder than that; for one thing, they're the servers at a grandiose polygynous wedding wherein the reluctant bridegroom has been chained to his seven prospective brides. The plot can roughly be described as "end of the Graduate as portrayed by the couple from Dog Day Afternoon, with a ending courtesy of the Urashima Effect". Dirty Pair TV is loose and crazed, with very few imaginative brakes. The writers weren't too enthusiastically dedicated to the cause of coherent narrative or consistency, which means that the episodes can end up in unpredictably strange places when things inevitably go off the rails. I had never realized that the OAVs were actually *staid* in comparison with the high weirdness of the TV series.

No comments: