Posted on 27 September 2007 with categories: Anime Reviews, Ooedo Rocket


Ooedo Rocket (also known as Oh! Edo Rocket, it seems) is one of the more neglected series of the past spring-season. I have no idea why, as it’s been directed by the director of Full Metal Alchemist. You’d think the fans would want to see his next work. I’m glad I checked this series out though, as it’s without a doubt the best comedy-series of the season. And not only does it make you laugh for nearly every single episode, it also has something that/s very rare in other comedies: a compelling plot.

Ooedo’s power lies in its characters. Every single one of them is fun to watch and they literally come in all kinds of different sizes. Each one has his or her own quirk and they can actually be funny without making a joke at all. They’re all far from stereotypes, they feel like real characters, they develop a bit, and they’re a delight to watch when they start interacting with each other in just a daily manner.

This is enough to make a good comedy. What makes Ooedo a great comedy is how it adds so many details to strengthen the series. An example is its setting: the series explores fireworks in the Tenpou-era (between 1830 and 1844), and yet people have televisions, toasters and even internet and nobody seems to find it strange, even though these references only appear occasionally. And let me specifically mention the music. It’s not your standard soundtrack with all kinds of jazzy tunes, but it works perfectly. For me, each time it started playing I got pumped and exciting for the new scenes.

And then there’s the plot and the drama. The drama is for me the weakest point of the series, basically because the characters are so much fun to watch when they’re quirky that they become a bit disappointing when they’re serious. The plot, however, makes this series shine. The main character, Tamaya Seikichi (the son of THE legendary fireworks-maker) is basically asked by a cute girl to build a rocket to fly her to the moon. A large part of the series actually sees him, testing out different designs for a rocket to try and figure out how to do it, which is quite interesting. In addition to that, there are numerous side-plots that are explored, and the characters actually have the talent to be both funny and develop the plot at the same time. Most other anime only go to comedy when there’s some kind of aftermath or intermezzo where the plot doesn’t really matter that much.

Then there’s also the interesting point that the dramatic climax of this series is at episode 20, instead of twenty-six. At that point, I was beginning to fear that the final parts of the episode would focus way too much on the drama, but to my surprise, they didn’t. The final episodes are basically the characters having fun while the plot develops, combining both perfectly, with a sort-of satisfying ending.

I’ll admit, Ooedo Rocket isn’t consistently funny. Some episodes are utterly hilarious, while others are a bit less, and there have been comedies where I laughed harder. But because of all the extra things it added, it turned into one of the more successful comedies out there. A definite recommendation if you’re looking for a fun series.

12 Responses

  1. Tom&Jerry says:

    Thanks for supporting this show. Don’t forget to blog the subs.

  2. Chris says:

    I’m also surprised that virtually nobody but you mentioned this show. I gave it a try and watched the first two episodes so far. It seems really hilarious and the art/animation quality is very good with a somewhat unique style. Overall my first impression is that the authors were very creative. The subs by Shinsen are really neat because they provide commentary and trivia at the end albeit you don’t really have to know this, in order to enjoy it.

  3. Don says:

    This has been one of my favorite series this year (along with Denno Coil and Seirei no Moribito) and I’ve been waiting impatiently for each episode to be subtitled. I’m glad I’m not the only person who enjoys it.

  4. Karry says:

    Predictable. 88/100 for a total and complete crap. This is a tendency with this blog.

  5. psgels says:

    Karry: Heh, funny how you use the word “predictable”, because that basically defines all your comments you made on this blog. If you don’t like it, then why do you watch it?

    Don, Chris: Glad to see that many others have been watching this show. :)

  6. waa i am still in episode 15 since i watch the subs but it’s good so far. i hope the last episodes are quite satisfactory and surprising. i can’t wait for the next episodes.

    well i can say that the story itself is original compared to the plots of the other shounen anime these days. *ehem bleach ehem*

    the characters are awesome too. i specifically like tenho, tenten and toyama :D even though they only have small parts.

  7. berries says:

    Thanks for the review. You’re right – the series hasn’t caught much attention; I was aware of it quite early on but due to there not being many reviews (eg: 24 on Anime News Network, 2 on Animenfo!) I hvn;t watched it yet.

  8. Kasumi says:

    This is my favorite series of the year, and actually makes my top 10 ever list. I actually thought the drama parts were what gave the show the extra boost to the top, and I really don’t view it as a pure comedy show. There’s just too much serious going on under the cover of crazy humor. The only real complaints I have with the show is that sometimes the animation quality tanked, and they could’ve turned down the “cartoony” on a few occasions. I don’t want to ramble on too much, but thanks for picking this up to review. Otherwise I probably wouldn’t have watched it.

  9. asdf says:

    Awesome show. I was surprised by the mix of drama and comedy with actual plot progression. I thought the plot was pretty interesting thanks to the setting and quirkiness of the whole series…watching Akai transform through the series was pretty cool too…I would have to say he was my favorite character.

  10. Jon says:

    I just wanted to say that I had watched the whole show through. I don’t quite agree with your rating of this show. It seemed to be targeted to an audience younger than me and it made me feel embarassed to watch it during (many) parts. It just kept becoming a wall banger for me. I couldn’t keep believing in what they were saying and I just disliked how they developed some of the characters.

    yes, i’ll give you that it was funny in parts, but I just wouldn’t reccomend it to friends if they asked for an anime to watch.

  11. sg_06 says:

    The problem with this anime is that anything else I watch just seems boring now. :\

    And then: funny on the surface, amazing plot beneath the funny, under appreciated, and [apparently] mistaken as childish…This is Earthbound incarnated in anime!

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