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Garo: Honoo no Kokuin #3

October 18, 2014

holla4Just finished this episode. It’s another solid episode. Although this Garo series feels sorta… weird.

Looking at the credits, it seems the head writer is Yasuko Kobayashi. So, a quick wiki-search revealed that amongst his credits, particularly those where he was head writer, he did Claymore. Which I have to admit, Garo: The Animation has much the same vibe. But then again, Claymore was based on a manga and this guy presumably just adapted it for anime. Still, it and Garo do share certain vibes. Which I dig. He also did Witchblade, Casshern Sins and Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure. Then again, we gotta take into account that he’s the head writer and not the head director. Still…

But more interesting are his tokusatsu credits. He’s done Kamen Rider Ryuki, Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon and Kamen Rider OOO. All are fairly heavy series (yes, even Sailor Moon got heavy by the middle). Indeed, Gen Urobuchi’s supposedly a big fan of Ryuki too, and his recent Kamen Rider Gaim, not to mention Madoka, was heavily inspired by Ryuki. Then again, this Yasuko Kobayashi fella also did Kamen Rider Den-O, which was a super silly (but monstrously popular) version of Kamen Rider.

The point is, this Garo cartoon has a nice vibe that separates it from other fantasy-ish series. It isn’t as stylish as Bahamut. In fact, it’s pretty generic-ish, but at the same time, Garo has a really good feel to it. I’m personally really pleased with it. Both as a product and as a proof of concept for adapting tokusatsu properties/concepts into anime. It sorta feels like we’re in that era where Hollywood was tentatively dipping its toes into the superhero pool. We seem to be getting some hero & toku-based/inspired stuff lately. Even superficially magical girl series are actually closer to the whole hero/toku thing lately.

Will Garo be the Ironman to anime/Hollywood? We shall see.

Additional note: I love the quick change aspect of the show. I realize it’s an artifact from the live action series, which couldn’t afford intricate transformation sequences, but it works so well in anime form.

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