Saturday, January 26, 2008

Black Lagoon

Full Title: Black Lagoon
Genres: Adventure, Comedy, Drama
Episodes: 12
Uploaded By: Mavrik
My Age Rating: MA (Strong Language, Graphic Violence, Adult Situations, Brief Nudity)

Okajima Rokuro was an average Japanese business man resigned to his life as a footstool for his superiors to step on whenever they pleased, that is until they sent him on a "business trip" in the South China Sea to deliver a disc. One hijacking and kidnapping later, he was in the hands of a group of ruthless pirates known as the Black Lagoon. After talking with his company and realizing he was worthless for ransom, they named him Rock and allowed him to tag along with them for a little while. He eventually earned their respect and chose to become a permanent member of the group, turning his back on his old life and using his business skills to function as their negotiator. Now Rock has to try to survive heated gun battles, bloodthirsty terrorists, and, most of all, his trigger happy partner, a beautiful gunslinger named Revy, on almost a daily basis, but such is life for the underworld's newest villain in training...

If there is one thing you must have when watching this series, it's the ability to suspend your disbelief. There are many impossible scenarios and point blank gunshots that miss simply because if they didn't, the series would end without a conclusion. Just get used to the fact that Revy can put a bullet into anyone she likes from any range, but nobody can return the favor to her even at point-blank, and you're good to go. Basically, if you can watch your average Hollywood action flick without blinking, this will be no challenge. In fact, during the first episode Rock wonders aloud if he's in a movie to which Revy responds, "Don't be stupid, this is way more entertaining than Hollywood's ever going to be."

Overall, the story is enjoyable, and the characters interact incredibly well with each other, leading to some of the best dialog in any anime. The opening sequence is incredible, by far one of the best, and the ending is also worth a watch. The music for this anime is dead-on throughout, and the English voice acting is also quite good. If there is one quirk in the production, it would have to be the uneven character designs. I noticed it especially for Revy, probably because when she's on-screen, she's what I pay the most attention too. Her physical characteristics change throughout the anime depending on the angle, which may annoy some viewers (I didn't have any problem with it myself.) Anyway, despite some lack of character animation consistency, this series is lush and beautiful in its art and depictions of battle and violence. Character movement is smooth as silk during the action sequences, and the characters, especially Revy, have some pretty cool moves up their sleeves. Definitely worth a watch for anyone looking for semi-mindless, fun entertainment. When it comes to Black Lagoon, suspending your disbelief has never been so rewarding.

My Rating: 8.1/10 (Excellent)

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