Megumi ToyoguchiAsami ImaiKaori FukuharaMinori Chihara
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2009
Director: Masayuki Sakoi
Writer: Satoru Nishizono
Original creator: Kami Imai
Actor: Asami Imai, Aya Endo, Emiri Kato, Eri Kitamura, Hiroki Touchi, Kaori Fukuhara, Kenji Utsumi, Kentaro Ito, Kisho Taniyama, Mariya Ise, Megumi Toyoguchi, Minori Chihara, Saori Goto, Takehito Koyasu, Yui Makino
Keywords: anime, post-apocalypse
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 24 episodes
Website category: Anime late 00s
Review date: 25 August 2022
Imagine all the silliness, absurdity and fanservice for which anime is infamous... but turned up to eleven, for laughs. I laughed my head off. It's brilliant. However, the first half's funnier than the second, which is basically one long fight with ever-stronger opponents. Our heroes enter a room in Simeon Tower in ep.9 and don't leave it until ep.22. (There are some flashback episodes, though.)
It's a Fist of the North Star post-apocalypse setting, but with superpowers. Men will be mega-muscled, colossal and at once ludicrously over- and under-dressed. Will cloaks have collars that could sail the Atlantic? Yup? Will men wear shirts? Hell no. Naughty bits aren't shown, but the show's doing everything imaginable short of that. (For comedy.) See the first-half end credits sequence, for instance. Good lord. Alternatively, see ep.6, where the Simeon Girl Squadron are chasing Eve through a booby-trapped mansion. Firstly: flamethrowers! (Plug them with buttons from your top.) Next, "if we had a curtain, or something big and dark to cover up the sensor!" (Remove most of your clothes, but leave your underwear.) Next: we're too heavy for a weight sensor, by a very small amount! (Ah, you guessed it.)
Our ahem, cough, "heroes" are:
ADAM BLADE = the show's ultimate comedy weapon. Imagine a parody of cocky, overconfident heroes who know they'll win, no matter what. This one's also in love with himself, ultra-violent, a total loon and overly fond of girls. Macho: to the flamboyant max. Sanity: zero. Superpower: the ability to copy other people's abilities.
EVE NUESCHWANSTEIN = less psychotic than Blade, but even more mentally challenged. Her dream is to be able to remember people's names. They're quite a pair. Superpower: shapeshifting.
CRUZ SCHILD = meek boy with a brain and some moral sense. In other words, he's unique.
GIDO = old scientist bloke. Unfortunately, he hangs out with Blade.
Other fruit loops include Teruyama Momiji (even less intelligent than Blade and wants to be the show's hero), Solva (the most evil person in the show, which is hilarious because she's an ally), Rira Roukakuji (colossal boobs and a top that deserves a prize for how little it conceals), etc.
All this is fantastic. It's the kind of OTT ludicrousness you'll want to stand and applaud. Zero taste. Rampant panty shots. A plot twist in ep.10 that doesn't make sense, but is funny. However, the earlier episodes in the Black Spot are more varied and imaginative than the later, fight-based ones. (Even the first-half title sequences are more outrageous than the second-half ones.) The show has less room to go apeshit in battle episodes. Ultimately, it gets almost serious. There's a coherent plot buried deep underneath and even a bit of cleverness, e.g. the names.
The original manga ran from 2003-2013, incidentally, only half of which had been written when this anime came out. It's split into two parts. Part I is this anime, although it diverges in ep.22 for an anime-only ending. Part II is Cruz looking for his scattered friends and has some crazed plot twists.
I'd recommend this show strongly to everyone, especially religious fundamentalists. (They'd drop dead.) It drifts downhill, but from such a crazed pinnacle that even the more sober episodes are still axe-crazy, offensive and exploitative. (And funny.) Watch this show for bizarre costume choices and a production team who were probably laughing their heads off throughout and making dares to each other.