Black Lagoon – episode 1

April 16, 2006 on 11:58 pm | In Black Lagoon | 3 Comments

“The Black Lagoon”

Brought to you by Geneon, which means that it won’t be brought to me unless I choose to buy or rent the DVDs. Black Lagoon is pure modern-day pirate action anime. It’s a little rough around the edges in its production, but it is also pretty cool.

Okajima Rokuro is a newly-anointed salaryman. His company requires him to ferry a disc across the South China Seas … on a boat. Unfortunately, a group of pirates have a contract on the disc and take Rokuro with them without a second’s thought.
The pirates treat Rokuro well, and rechristen him “Rock”. Dutch, Levi and Benny begin to get into all sorts of fights and then realise that they may have bitten off more than they can chew as the incredibly well-organised, if arrogant, assassins of the world want to destroy Rock and the information that he held.

The lines in Black Lagoon are ill-defined, which gives the entire show a too-soft feel. That pales in comparison to the situations on offer that result in only essential characters surviving shoot-outs and inexplicable getaways.
Where did Benny get that car from? What kind of logic has Rock throwing his gun at a helicopter in a fit of rage? It’s just supposed to be fun action, so we’re not supposed to pay any heed to parabolas or physics or anything boring like that.

The pedigree of the crew is amazing, packed as it is with a lot of the cast of Monster and other veterans in the mould of more “mature” seiyuu. Writer director Katabuchi Sunao has worked extensively with GAiNAX and Studio Ghibli, and is possibly capable of doing big things with the material on hand.

Black Lagoon kind of reminded me of Geobreeders, but a version thereof that made marginally more sense. I hope people have fun with it, because it’s that kind of anime. (Plus it’s got a surprisingly incisive view into the life of the salaryman; study this for business!)


  1. I haven’t watched this yet but I can already say that the art and character designs are very attractive (just the way I like them). If you’re saying that most of the Monster crew are working on this then it can’t be bad. I just hope that it’s not only about gun fights.

    Comment by Mohammad — April 17, 2006 #

  2. To be accurate, the Monster connection is that Dutch (the big guy) played Bonaparta’s son and that Balalaika (the woman with blonde hair) was Eva (and, for my own gratification, Miki in City Hunter).
    The seiyuu are more along the lines of deeper voiced women, which is something I particularly like.

    As for just being about gun fights, I was surprised upon reflection to see just how much this episode said about the way that Japanese business works: the fact that people are grateful to be salarymen, even if the job is thankless; the way that salarymen have to go to drinking parties and like the way it takes off the harsh face of business but hate the obligatory fashion of it; the fact that to save face, a company will have its workers killed.

    Actually that last one is probably not indicative of Japanese business culture as a whole.

    It’s a guaranteed licence, though, so I’m not really going to follow it.

    Comment by Alex — April 17, 2006 #

  3. Hmm…

    Just saw episode one and I’m hooked!!!!

    The gunfight in the bar with “Two Hands” going nuts (and an insane smile on her face) made me go, WTF!?

    At first when I read the premise about this anime: “girl with guns,” I was a bit apprehensive in wathcing it, since I assumed this was gonna be full of unecessary fanservice.

    I’m glad to watch though that the the lead character with guns does’nt reload her weapon using her rack. 😆

    Comment by grss1982 — April 21, 2006 #

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Powered by WordPress with Pool theme design by Borja Fernandez.
Entries and comments feeds. Valid XHTML and CSS. ^Top^