Note: Lots of cool new anime coming out these days, so I decided to add this new feature here at Behold the Geek!, where I review anime episodes and decide whether it's a keeper or a dud. Hope you like it!
Samurai Flamenco Episode 1: Debut of Samurai Flamenco!
I've talked about superheroes in anime before, and one of the upcoming ones I was excited for was Samurai Flamenco. The promotional video made it look very interesting, and now that Episode 1 is out, I can see it for myself.
In this first ep, Hidenori Goto, a policeman, stumbles upon a very naked Masayoshi Hazama, who claims he's a superhero called Samurai Flamenco. Not exactly an auspicious first meeting, but it does it's job. After an altercation with a burning superhero uniform, Goto finds out why Masayoshi is running around being a superhero...or a semblance of one.
To be honest, Masayoshi grated on me. Maybe because his idealist notions clash with my pragmatism? I dunno. But taking first impressions into account, Masayoshi exudes this weird weeaboo vibe, like he's out of touch with reality, but instead of manifesting itself in the obsession with 2D waifus, Masayoshi's manifests itself in the very honest desire to be a superhero. He doesn't hide that fact one bit, even unabashedly mimicking the moves of his favorite superhero, Harakiri Sunshine (seriously), in front of Goto-san.
Of course, that desire gets Masayoshi into trouble when he decides to go out again in his Samurai Flamenco alter-ego to chase away a bunch of delinquent kids and ends up getting his ass kicked. It's pretty painful to watch, seeing a grown man being kicked around by 15-year-olds. Goto-san saves him eventually, and we see that this policeman has grown to care for this seemingly misguided vigilante. But Masayoshi's commitment to his cause is unwavering, and it tugs at a heartstring or two. I guess there IS really something deeply endearing about his ridiculously strong sense of justice
The animation is pretty good though for an episode that's basically a slice-of-life. It's weird that they went for the low-key approach for a debut episode instead of coming out guns a-blazing. But I guess we needed to know what makes Masayoshi tick, and I'm still hoping there's more superheroics in the coming episodes to take advantage of that.
If there's anything I could credit Samurai Flamenco, it's that it wasn't the superhero anime I was expecting. Something tells me this isn't the be-all, end-all of Samurai Flamenco. And I really hope I'm right. For now this is a keeper.