Posted by psgels on 27 March 2011 with categories: Wolverine

Let me start this review with a message to everyone who didn’t give Wolverine a chance because of Iron Man: it’s really not bad!

Wolverine and Iron Man are completely different series. They were written by different people, directed with different people and have completely different purposes. Iron Man was just crap in nearly every single way. Wolverine however was a simple but very effective action series that knew exactly what it was and what it wanted to be.

It’s a series that doesn’t have the biggest budget, but still manages to create consistently good action throughout its airtime. Nearly every episode delivers plenty of action to keep you busy, while avoiding the Dragonball Z syndrome of dragging out by changing set-ups and locations often enough to keep things dynamic. This certainly is no show that shows people just standing at the same place and talking to each other. Wolverine is a very simple character: don’t think; just do. This allows the series to be constantly moving, preventing it from getting stale.

In comparison to Iron Man, Wolverine actually has a continuous story instead of an incoherent mess that will turn off just about everyone. It’s a simple one: it basically revolves around saving a damsel in distress and all, but the creators throw in just enough extra spices to make it interesting and keep the action going. Some of the characters have a bigger story than others, but together they actually make a pretty enjoyable cast that is hot blooded, but perfect for a simple action series.

That simplicity is obviously also the biggest flaw of this series, because you really don’t want to watch this series for its depth. Wolverine is action and more action, and it only has its story and characters in order to support this action, and not the other way around. And don’t worry, it’s not like it has a cast of idiots like with Iron Man, but everyone remains pretty simple and doesn’t break many barriers. The characters in Wolverine are likable because they’re cool and charismatic, not because they’re particularly easy to identify with or anything. Like I said, the main plot of the show revolves around a damsel in distress.

Madhouse has a unique visual style, but lately I’ve noticed that they have trouble with making their characters act. The acting in Wolverine is quite stiff at times, which has a lot to do with the animators being unable to create dynamic facial expressions for the characters. The screenplay is excellent, though: it does exactly what a simple action series needs to do.

There is only one point where Wolverine was really better than any other series this season: its soundtrack and the use of it. Bold, versatile and excellent at making the action even better.

Storytelling: 8/10 – Lots of action, and does this well, knowing how to balance it out with its plot.
Characters: 8/10 – Simple, but effective and likable.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Awesome soundtrack. Animation has a lot of weaknesses, but still remains pretty solid for an action series.
Setting: 8/10 – The backstory actually does what it needs to do to make this series interesting for a full 12 episodes.

Ultraviolet: Code 044
Bakumatsu Kikansetsu Irohanihoheto
High School of the Dead

8 Responses

  1. Oersted says:

    Oh, I was already considering to give it another shot by your favorable comments through the season (specially to hear that soundtrack on action).

    It’s not exactly my usual cup of tea, but hey, some brainless entertainment is nice as well. As long as the show does this without looking just silly and assuming the viewer is so too, I mean.

  2. Tomtom says:

    I also enjoyed this show for what it was. Seems we’ll have to keep waiting for a ‘real’ anime homage to one of the coolest and most iconic Marvel action heroes of all time, though.

  3. Isotopesam says:

    Your review is spot-on. However, I wouldn’t score it that high – 70-80% range. The lack story depth drove me again from this anime series.

  4. EINSOF says:

    I loved this adaption, very well done. Wolverine’s original back-story involved alot about japan so i figured they’d do it well. with the X-men anime coming, I’m wondering if they’ll show “Lady Deathstrike” which is Yuriko. the girl he battled to save. i get excited thinking about it. nice review.

  5. EINSOF says:

    Ah sry, this is Mariko. so ive got the “riko” part mixed up. looks like Wolverines had a longer history with japan then i knew of. better read up more on it.

  6. AstroNerdBoy says:

    @Einsof — Logan has a long history with Japan in the comic books. Indeed, it was his near wedding to Mariko in X-Men that introduced me to Japanese honorifics like “-san” and “-sama” (though I had no clue what they meant back then). I never owned the early-80’s Wolverine series this anime was initially based off of before branching off on its own path but if you read that series plus some of the X-Men she’s in (#118 is where Wolverine meets Mariko and she’s in a few issues after that before issue #172 where Logan and Mariko are to be married and that storyline goes for a few issues), you’ll get a much different and more interesting story IMO.

  7. Jason says:

    watch the series online holy shit its awesome and the ending is true to gritty wolverine stories

  8. Turo says:

    I have to disagree about the soundtrack… During action scenes they just played the same simple and boring heavy guitar riffs all over again.

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  • Bam
    (Friday, Oct 9. 2015 12:57 AM)
    These new Batman shorts called ‘Batman of Shanghai’ are pretty awesome:
    Props to Wolf Smoke Studios for the style and execution. I think this borrowed a lot from the Studio 4°C segment of the Batman: Gotham Knight anthology series. I haven’t been this entertained by a Batman cartoon since the original Batman: The Animated Series.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Thursday, Oct 8. 2015 11:09 PM)
    I have to finish the world is mine someday…and read all of Yamamoto Naoki’s works, looks like some good obscure seinen there.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Thursday, Oct 8. 2015 10:52 PM)
    @Realist: Slice of life fan, you’ll want to go off and read Taiyou matsumoto’s work, Sunny being one of them.
  • Kevin
    (Thursday, Oct 8. 2015 10:50 PM)
    @ninjarealist Ha u that one nigga that jet lol nice way to sneak back, I missed you. Remember me?
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Thursday, Oct 8. 2015 10:48 PM)
    @Realist: I imagine you will be seeing black mass?
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Thursday, Oct 8. 2015 10:47 PM)
    @Realist: Oh by the way I remember ages ago you recommended Meserine to me, not the biggest gangster fan out there and this did suffer from the usual issues of the bipic format but some great action bits in it =) and Vincent Cassel doing what he does best.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Thursday, Oct 8. 2015 10:45 PM)
    @Realist: Whatever name you prefer is fine. Though its Kaiser now so we may as well use that.
  • ninjarealist
    (Thursday, Oct 8. 2015 10:28 PM)
    @Kaiser/Emma (do you prefer to go by Kaiser now?) Punpun is the best, but I don’t see it getting adapted any time soon. As someone who personally loves slice-of-life, I love Dead Demons.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Thursday, Oct 8. 2015 10:11 PM)
    My concern for subete is largely, is it 11 or 22 episodes long? 22 episodes would be better because the story could develop better.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Thursday, Oct 8. 2015 10:04 PM)
    I had a look into the black jack manga and I remember the other two black jack anime I saw, the mangas stories seem a bit more fantastical.

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