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In which Jay and Max brave the X-Men anime; the problem isn’t in Wolverine’s pants; Xavier is for once less villainous than he seems; Emma Frost gets ruffly; Cyclops wasn’t even supposed to be here today; and we both really want to hang out with Scott Porter.
- Billy Kaplan and Tommy Shepherd
- Waiting for the Trade
- The X-Men Anime
- Marvel Anime
- Scott Porter
- Jay’s ongoing attempts to assemble a coherent X-Men/Speed Racer conspiracy theory
- Floating Hands Theater Wolverine
- An unlikely T.A.
- Several recurring flashbacks
- The U-Men
- The other U-Men
- Armor (Hisako Ichiki)
- Emma Frost, but ruffly
- Evil Moira MacTaggert (Yui Sasaki)
- The Sasaki Institute
- The other Inner Circle
- Takeo Sasaki
- Potluck night at the Hellfire Club
- Living vs. dead Jean Grey
NEXT EPISODE: Jubilee!
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I should get around to watching this anime. Maybe.
Waiting for the Trade is really good. Always funny.
I’m jus tto the part of this where you guys talk about Armor, and holy hell I so agree. This anime made her mutant powers so cool, and so plausibly dangerous in a way that was not conveyed in the Whedon Run to my satisfaction.
So, is the anime teeth proliferation better or worse than Rob Liefeld, where he sometimes seems to be drawing people with well over double the number of teeth humans actually have?
Amd gosh, my name has been said aloud on the show! What a nice way to start a Monday! Thank you for the answers, which are terribly easy to envisage! 😀
I’ve watched the first 2 eps of this like 4 times and never gotten further. It feels like the weird, artificial things about the “labnguage” of anime combines with the worst parts of superhero comics’ story language to make a mess of things.
And of course, Jubilee means we are that much closer to Judgement War! (Evil laugh)
So, I went and did some research on this.
About the creation of new characters were existing characters would suffice: So, it is important to mention that the show aired on Japanese TV, while in the US it was aired on TV – it was aired on G4 in conjunction with the DVD release in the US (IIRC). While the X-Men have some visibility in Japan, they are much more niche than they are in the US, so my rule of thumb with adaptations of US superheroes to anime in Japan is that unless a character has previously appeared in an animated series or feature film that was carried in that market, it’s a new character, and any characterization of those characters will be done in a manner that’s closer to how the character has been most recently or visibly been characterized in that market, because that’s what audiences will know. This does mean that Storm will have X3 characterization, because that’s how viewers will know Storm.
About the writing: Warren Ellis did do story outlines from the show, but from interviews I’ve read, that’s all he did. The actual episode-to-episode writing was done by Hideo Takayashiki and Mitsutaka Hirota. Now, on the one hand, going from his ANN (Anime News Network) encyclopedia entry, Takayashiki is a vet, having been in the business since the ’70s, and having written for Dancougar and Ashita No Joe series 2 (among other shows). On the other hand, though, the other writer, Hirota, is a relative rookie, and he’s got some crap to his name, including the mediocre “Fairy Musketeers” and the even more critically panned (in Japan and in the US) “Dragonaut: The Resonance” .
Finally, it’s important to mention that Madhouse had a *lot* on their plate at this time, and the other works that they were doing were things that probably had a lot more interest to them – Kaiji (a super OTT gambling anime), HunterXHunter (an adaptation of a very popular shonen manga), and Chihayafuru (an adaptation of a narratively dense josei – women’s – manga) which domestic audiences would have cared more about, and likely the animators would have cared more about. On the other hand, the Marvel Anime products – at least those which didn’t have a connection to the MCU (like the Iron Man TV series and film), were basically just for a paycheck.
One other post.
About the art: My suspicion is (aside from the studio’s priorities being on other, more high profile domestically series), that the two character designers we have have primarily only done character design work within Madhouse, which means they’d likely been taken, at least during part of their career, under the wing of one of Madhouse’s longest running animators, character designers, and directors, Yoshiaki Kawajiri. Kawajiri is best known in the west as the director, writer, and character designer of Ninja Scroll – and that film is his style to a “T”. I’m also assuming, since this was a western co-production, that the animators suspect that what Marvel wanted in terms of character designs was something “Like Ninja Scroll” in terms of visual style – assuming Marvel didn’t say in the pitch meeting “We like your work on Ninja Scroll and want a PG-13 version of those visuals.
About the length: Japanese TV seasons are structured in 12-episode blocks called “Cours”, with four per year. X-Men was a 1-cour show, which is normal for foreign produced anime series, unless they’re specifically marketed for kids (like Stitch or Mysterious Cities of Gold)
You mentioned the Floating Hands Wolverine! Giving Wolverine a goofy voice may in fact be Pete’s and my lasting legacy to the world.
We have been frequently accused of forever ruining Wolverine and Emma because people can’t un-hear Pete’s take on them when reading new issues.
On the other hand, I once got approached by a stranger at a comic store who said “Cyclops? You’re Cyclops in SOMEthing!”
Thanks for the shout out!
I’m an Omega Red fan!
Hey, Jay, could you please say that “are there any Omega Red fans” line to Chris Sims?
Well. While I agree the X-Men anime is not great in many areas, there were certain things I thought would have received a reaction. I had thought Cyclops’ power being used basically for exorcising demons would have merited a comment.
Cam Clarke was brought up. With how often The Tick gets referenced, I was a little surprised Diefladermaus wasn’t. But, Cam Clarke has done so much notable voice acting. Anyway, it has been some years since I watched with English subtitles on, but I believe that translation gives a slightly different (possibly better, but not by much) story than the English dub. I recall Xavier’s lines turn out a little different after he flies the Blackbird through… something.
Also, Armor just jumps into the mind of the Proteus/Legion hybrid in the last episode because she has the mutant power of friendship. Kinda comes out of nowhere.
Whoops, left out two things.
Should pads. Storm has (bizarrely open) shoulder pads. Armor’s first costume has them. While it isn’t the 90s, the show doesn’t take itself seriously on their shoulder pads. Actually it was Wolverine who had a line in the first episode saying Cyclops brought them back.
Wolverine was also comedic relief. Remember the “time to work on her guns” pose in the Danger Room? I half expected him to sparkle like Major Armstrong from Fullmetal Alchemist.
I’m way late on this, but I’ve been playing a lot of Lego Marvel’s Avengers lately which is based on the Marvel cinematic universe to the point that they stuck random film lines in. None of the FOX/Sony characters show up, even those with ties to the Avengers…but Captain Britain is in the game. I don’t know if that’s 100% proof that Marvel owns the film rights to the character, but that’s how I read it.
Also it’s super disappointing because it means no Dr. Doom. =/