Posted on 8 December 2010 with categories: Anime Reviews




As a reviewer, I often try to create parts of my reviews for anime in my head as I’m watching them. After 20 episodes of Irresponsible Captain Tylor, I had a fairly good idea of what I was going to say about it: it’s a pretty decent parody of the space genre, poking fun at the incredible luck that protagonists are blessed with, taking that to the absurd while still retaining a serious science fiction story, though it dragged too much at certain parts, had too many generic episodes and cliched characters.

Then I watched the final four episodes, and pretty much had to throw all of my impressions and assumptions overboard and start from scratch.

And I mean, it’s not like Irresponsible Captain Tylor doesn’t have its boring moments. It’s a parody, but sometimes fails in that, for example when it tries to parody the harem genre by having every single female fall in love with Tylor despite an overabundance of other hot guys. That’s not witty; everybody does that. Some of the premises for some of the episodes are also a bit uninspired, where the cliches overshadow the wit of the scenario, not to mention that Tylor himself is annoying beyond belief. And then this show comes and delivers an absolutely fantastic finale that is nothing like the rest of the series, yet ties everything together perfectly, delivers an epic climax and is completely unpredictable in every way.

I mean, it’s Koichi Mashimo here. Especially at the beginning and end of this show, he really shows that before starting Bee-Train, he already was an amazing director. The characters of this series have plenty of annoyances and flaws, and yet they’re far from one dimensional, and grow on you as the series progresses. The best scenes of this series are also amazingly well directed and this show contains some of the best animation I’ve seen from him. To make matters even more interesting, Kenji Kawai did the soundtrack for this one, and yet the music in this series is unlike anything from either him or anything else I’ve heard from Bee-Train. It’s very low-budget and especially excels in how well it’s used with the storytelling.

Whether or not I recommend it to you depends on your patience. I mean, Tylor is specifically designed to annoy both you and the other characters of this series. The middle part is also riddled with cliches that really could have used the parody nature of this series better, so you’re pretty much guaranteed to be annoyed and bored at some part of the series. I too had these points where I just wanted to get over with this series, and yet: most of these flaws are just annoying.

I could hardly spot any bad acting, directing or melodrama in this series and even the generic parts had one or two details that made them fresh and new. The finale of this series however made up for a whole lot for me, leaving behind an excellent aftertaste, compared to all of those series that keep building and building up, without actually knowing what they’re building up for. I would have rated this show much, much lower if it wasn’t for its guts that I wish a lot more of the mainstream series today had. And this isn’t entirely because I’m just a Bee-Train fanboy. I was fully aware that Koichi Mashimo made a really uninspired Sorceror Hunters two years after finishing this series.

Storytelling: 9/10 – Doesn’t aim to be consistently entertaining, is very annoying and cliched at times, yet comes together wonderfully in the end.
Characters: 8/10 – They can and will annoy you. Yet, they’re flawed, dynamic and lovable.
Production-Values: 9/10 – Some of the best episodes have truly excellent animation. The middle episodes are a lot more static, but also stilllook very good for its time.
Setting: 8/10 – 60% of the time it doesn’t make use of its parody status, resulting in a bunch of cliches lumped together. When it does though, it’s awesome.

Suggestions:
Mobile Police Patlabor
Kemonozume
Argento Soma

6 Responses

  1. TWWK says:

    This show is one of my all-time favorites. The almost-80′-ish look of the show and the 80′s-ish music really feel right – they’re an important part of establishing a unique feel, I think.

    I also really enjoyed the characters – even Tylor, who I didn’t find annoying at all. I’ll agree with you in point, in particular, though – the ending is amazing. While most anime, even the very best, flounder at the end, The Irresponsible Captain Tylor delivers its best episodes there.

  2. max says:

    Irresponsible Captain Tylor is one of my favorite series, I like Tylor and how he play the most irresponsible man ever,the series is hilarious and the ending top notch.

    I’m glad you stumbled into it and reviewed it.

  3. AKI says:

    I remember this, too, airing at a local channel. I haven’t watched it from the beginning but totally agrees that the ending was masterfully done.

  4. Souther says:

    It’s a good show, though I’d probably give it an 80/100 by virtue of the fact that things did drag a bit too much somewhere around the middle and it literally took me months to get back to finishing the series.

    I don’t think that merits a 9/10 in terms of storytelling, honestly, in particular. I could also poke at something else, but I’ll refrain from doing so at this time.

    Nevertheless, my overall opinion of the Irresponsible Captain Tylor TV series remains quite positive. I can’t really say the same thing about the OVA series that followed it though.

  5. Brixter says:

    This is a bad review or rather a bad writing.

    If you will watch this anime and compare it to the latest anime available today, Taylor remains strong, in both storytelling and plot, music and character development.

  6. ashimbabbar says:

    I think it sucks hideously, and the end worse than the rest… as to the comedy, the only thing that made me laugh was that one the evil Terran generals was a stunning lookalike for former French president Nicolas Sarkozy.

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