Posted by psgels on 27 August 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews



Well, time for me to pimp another very unknown series. This one comes completely subbed, courtesy of a one-man fansub group (who did a very admirable job, by the way), and it tells about Tetsuya, a legendary gambler and Mah-jong player. For the past few years, Akagi has turned into the symbol of Mah-Jong anime, but this series shows that it wasn’t the pioneer of the genre.

When I first started to watch this series, and realized that this series plays a lot of emphasis on cheating, I expected some sort of combination between Akagi and Kaiji, but that comparison turned to be a bit off, as there are some subtle differences. Tetsuya doesn’t really try to get very deep into the heads of the different players, but it’s much more about different cheating-techniques and its characters. In Kaiji, all the gamblers are referred to as human trash, while Tetsuya shows a more human side of them.

Tetsuya doesn’t try to go as deep as Akagi and Kaiji, but it did avoid these two series’s biggest weakness: their horribly slow pacing. Tetsuya’s pacing is quick and to the point that it never really drags, so that we can get to see a wide variety of players through the limited time of only 20 episode. There’s never really a moment to get bored. Even the final arc only takes up two episodes, instead of dragging things out in an attempt to create tension.

And the characters really shine. A lot of them are very interesting to watch, as they either team up with or play against Tetsuya, considering their limited screen-time. My favourite was the match against Innami, the walking corpse. He’s an excellent example of a character that shatters the boundaries of good and evil.

One complaint is that at times, it becomes clear that this series was based on a much larger manga. Thankfully, each arc is a standalone story, but there are a few story-threads that get introduced, and yet never answered. Boshu’s wife never makes an appearance, even though including her would have greatly fleshed out Boshu’s character. There’s also one character in the OP that never appears in the actual series. You can’t help but wonder what’s up with that.

Overall, I don’t think that this series is going to be better than Akagi (I’ll get back to that statement once I get the chance to finish that series), but nevertheless Tetsuya is a simple but effective series with a cast of great characters. It in any case deserves to get more attention than what it’s getting right now.

Storytelling: 8/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 8/10
Setting: 8/10

2 Responses

  1. SEO services says:

    yep.. this anime make sure a hit..

  2. Michael says:

    I’ve been a fan of this anime ever since UA released its first two episodes on TV rips. I’m currently downloading the whole series and from what I see in the screencaps it has a much better quality compared to my UA subs.

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  • Bam
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 03:32 PM)
    An anime original that wasn’t an adaptation of some manga, LN or VN gave it a certain charm and unpredictability, which is absolutely a welcomed addition. Now I’m not gonna deny its plateura of problems, but it’s hard to sit back and hear people call Casablanca shit because it doesn’t have the flair and optimism of Age of Ultron.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 03:29 PM)
    Misanthropy in anime is old, cliched and boring. But that wasn’t the case when Eva did it. Plus it features characters like Misato and Kaji that are very hopeful for the future, going as far as planning to filter the ocean and regrow vegetation for society. There is definitely a bigger focus on misery, but as explained that was a mirror to Anno’s deteriorating mental health, which in itself added an angle of intrigue to the show.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 03:22 PM)
    Now does it look old? Does it seem overdone and unoriginal? Absolutely. But that’s no th fault of the series for not accounting for viewers who are watching it 20 years later, after getting exposed first to all the stuff that have heavily borrowed from it.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 03:19 PM)
    It also perfectly explained what the instrumentality looked like for people that were in the process of assimilation, so it was a fitting end; albeit admittedly a weird one. Episodes 25 and 26 just chose to show the stream of consciousness of how the process was perceived by someone inside the sea of LCL. It made sense if you cared to pay attention along the way, so to call it completely nonsensical is unfair and entirely reliant on personal misinterpretation.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 03:14 PM)
    Also End of Evangelion is a masterstroke of the animated medium. That’s not just my opinion as a fan, but an opinion that’s been echoed in the circle of critics, many of whom don’t even care about anime. Even the classical conservative critics on IMDB gave it an average of 8.3, that is far from shabby.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 03:05 PM)
    Discounting the influence of a show is an arbitrary parameter that you’ve just come up with to undermine the series- nobody agrees with such restriction. And again, the genre deconstruction, the great cinematography, the slick character design, the music, the unconventional plot and creative ending, are all points that stand on their own regardless of how influential Eva was or wasn’t.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 02:58 PM)
    And no, Archer hated Shirou’s childish ideology, and he heartheadedly stuck to it, knowing we’ll what suffering he has gone people (including the future version of himself) thru. A World where nobody cries is an absurd goal, that is as illogical as it is unattainable.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 02:56 PM)
    @Aidan: nothing exists in a vacuum. The year the show got released is an extremely important factor, and a horrible show would never leave such a mark on the industry.
    Plus I spoke plenty about the reconstructive elements of Eva, that has nothing to do with its influence. Everything from SAO to Fate has copied exact scene compositions from Eva; just Google it.
  • AidanAK47
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 02:47 PM)
    Two last things. Shirou in that timeline has very little chance of becoming Archer.
    And the end of the TV series wasn’t Annos fuck you to the audience. End of Evangelion was Annos Fuck you to the audience. Thing is instead of getting pissed off, they cheered.
  • AidanAK47
    (Sunday, Jun 26. 2016 02:42 PM)
    Either way Mario said he might do a review of the First Eva tv series. I am curious to see if he will be quite so enthralled with it seeing as it’s his first time watching it and he hasn’t been deluded with years of it’s “influence”

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