I’m getting all the positives out of the way so I can focus on venting my rage on the bad stuff later. And that said, this installment of Lupin III is pretty much my caper series this season. Also, Valence seems to have joined in on the fun of writing first impressions posts, so yay for me not having to write tons of this stuff!
I was more than a bit hesitant to touch this series because Mari Okada is in it. That alone sends warning signs all over the place telling me that this show probably isn’t gonna end well. Don’t believe me? Have you seen True Tears, Fractale, Ano Hana (though this is a personal bias) or Black Rock Shooter? If the answer is no to all of the following, then A Woman Called Fujiko Mine should be a good primer on Mari Okada’s writing skills.
I really dislike Mari Okada’s tendency to write really terrible conclusions for the anime she gets involved in, the worst case of this being Fractale. However, I do have to give her credit for being able to write fairly entertaining stuff in the case of Black Rock Shooter or Hanasaku Iroha. It’s just that her writing is what I would call empty. It’s all about trying to extract emotions from the viewers and not having sufficient substance to back it up, taking away most of the potential enjoyment to be gotten from the show.
All that said, this first episode ended up being fun to watch. I have said before that I’m not gonna touch anything by Mari Okada, but my personal bias for Monkey Punch’s art style, as well as the rough and sketchy feel of the animation got the better of me. Top that with some pretty good gunfights, Lupin being awesome, Fujiko being seductive(?) and good overall direction and you have something quite enjoyable in your hands. Maybe deep inside of me, I still enjoy these Hollywood-ish action-oriented shows.
I have heard a lot of people complaining about the generous amount of time that Fujiko’s… bare chest is shown on screen. I don’t really have much problems with this fact, but I do wish they’d toned it down a bit. Sure, Fujiko is pretty much the sex symbol of Lupin III, but really now, guys? You’re obviously pushing it.
For now, I’m simply hoping that Mari Okada doesn’t end up screwing things over again, which, honestly, seems like too much to ask given her track record. Still, for what it’s worth, this is a series grounded on probably one of the greatest anime classics out there, and I shouldn’t put it above the staff to produce something that can be actually called good entertainment. Just… hold back on the nudity a bit, staff.