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.

Posted on with categories: Ooedo Rocket


I first wrote an entire entry about this episode and about how I loved it, but as I finished it, I decided that this episode doesn’t need an impression. This really is one of those episode you need to see for yourself and don’t want to get spoiled about.

TAMAYA!!!

Posted on 20 September 2007 with categories: Ooedo Rocket


Torii definitely redeemed himself in this episode! I often saw him as the most boring member of the cast, but the scene with him and Ginjiro, wrecking up the missile we saw in the previous episode was hilarious, especially when combined with the huge production-values of their fight!

And I must say, the past few episodes have built a very good base for the ending, showing that the creators knew exactly what they’re doing. Even though the storyline isn’t simple, they managed to make it feel as unforced and focused as possible, something only few other anime managed to do. That still leaves the question whether the ending will actually be enjoyable or not, but for now, I’m positive.

Basically, the worst thing you can do as a comedy-anime is completely abandon your comedy in favour of drama. That works rather disappointing, doesn’t it? For the final episode, there seem to be three threads in the storyline left: Akai’s revenge, Kagiya’s worries, and getting Sora in the air.

Especially the first one surprised me. I realy thought that Akai would hate Seikichi by now, but instead he went after the Blue Monster from the Sky, who has cleverly disguised her(him?)self as the member of the warriors whom she(he?) ate/absorbed. Kagiya also should prove to be interesting, and I wonder what role she’ll be playing in the next episode. But yeah, the real highlight is going to be launching that rocket. This series has build up for this rocket for twenty-five episodes now, it’d better end with a bang, one way or another.

Posted on 13 September 2007 with categories: Ooedo Rocket


Interesting, it’s quite possible that out of all the shows that will be ending in a few weeks, Ooedo Rocket will have the most unpredictable ending when it comes with a few nice twists this episode. While the final two episodes for both Bokura no, El Cazador and Toward the Terra are promising to be awesome, I do somehow know what to expect (and let’s not talk about Claymore, which will probably end in the most predictable way).

Some of the new twists were hard to follow, though, especially the ones at the end of the episode. Apparently, Mizuno-sama has ordered Torii to order Kagiya and his daughter to construct another rocket. This one, however, isn’t for going into space; it’s artillery. Torii explains a few things, but Norio Wakamoto’s voice is among the most difficult to understand amongst voice-actors, despite his manliness. I assume he wants to fire to the other side of the ocean, but why? Nice cliff-hanger by the way. ^^;

And Akai! Here I thought that he’s been busy with some cunning plan to get revenge on Seikichi, and all he did was sit in a tent and do nothing. I LOVE his new look as well, and it seems that he’s finally getting back into action with the next episode, as we saw him hiding behind Kagiya’s rocket at the end of the episode. That has to mean something!

The rocket also gets an interesting development: the blue monster from the sky comes, right before the official launch and blows the thing up! I loved how Tetsuju was near it, and the question remains: what happened to it? Tetsuju was found near the rubble, but there’s no sign of the Blue monster. Not even a shot of it escaping. What also surprised me: the thing now has the same eye as the guy it took it from. Could it really have merged with Tetsuju with that blast? By the way, does anyone know his voice-actor? I think I spotted another reference to a different anime when he suddenly put glasses on.

I’m really curious about the final two episodes, because they’re actually got so much potential. Heck, I’m not even sure if Sora is going to go into space or not. This episode showed that the rocket design remains buggy, so I wonder whether such a large construction will actually launch. Both Ginjiro and Akai have some kind of unexpected role to play as well. Overall, it’s going to be fun. :)

Posted on 6 September 2007 with categories: Ooedo Rocket


While the previous episode was the big climax for Shunpei and Onui, this episode was all about Ginjiro and O-Ise. It started out serious, so I began to worry whether this episode would deliver or not, though these worries weren’t necessary at all. The more it progressed, the better this episode became. :)

Ginjiro indeed has decided to stay away from Seikichi, because he still feels that he won’t forgive his betrayal. Instead, he’s been wandering around aimlessly and perhaps unconsciously returned to the place where he used to fight in the war (see episode three for this). It seems that after the war, it was haunting him so much that he attacked random children and nearly committed suicide. The thing that saved him: Seikichi’s fireworks. That quite nicely explains why he stuck with everyone for a couple of years.

He then runs into his former commander, who has turned blind in an accident. He puts up an act of taking care of parentless children, though Ginjiro quickly notices that he’s involved in some shady businesses, so he leaves.

Most of the episode, though, resolves around Kinshiro, who sends O-Ise and Tenhou (and Tetsuju as well) to check out some strange rumours, considering this former commander. I suspect that O-Ise got interested when she heard his name, and I suspect that this is also somehow good for the production of the rocket, though I didn’t exactly catch why. If I had to guess, then a bunch of rebels seem to have stolen the gunpowder that was meant for the rocket.

The highlight of the episode was the fight at the end, though. Battles in Ooedo Rocket have always been excellent, and this is no exception. It’s great to see the couple of Ginjiro and O-Ise together again, and it’s nice to see that Ginjiro gets saved by fireworks yet again, when he’s forced to battle the blind guy in total dark This time, though, the fireworks came not from Seikichi, but from Tetsuju, though. ^^;

In the next episode, we should see the climax really starting, according to the preview. I’m having high hopes for that episode, at least. It would be awesome if the creators put lots of comedy in it, and didn’t just focus on drama, though it’ll definitely be interesting to see how the wooden rocket fares into space, and how the Akai-problem will be solved. Seriously, that guy is up to something; I just know it!

Posted on 30 August 2007 with categories: Ooedo Rocket


Now THAT was an awesome episode! I thought that the previous episode could very hardly be toped, but I think the creators actually did it! It’s almost like everything about this episode is perfect: both Genzo and Tetsuju get a minute to be as hilarious as usual, Sora and Seikichi weren’t the focus of the episode, but they were incredibly fun to watch, the windows and Youtube-parodies were utterly brilliant, the love potion was hilarious and most of all: Shunpei and Onui were so awesome together!

Basically, the main plot is about Shunpei, accidentally using another one of Hiraga’s inventions: a love potion. Any woman who sees him, falls in love with him. This leads to hilarious results, as O-Ise calling him “Onii-chan”, Tenten trying to dress him up into various outfits, and Kagiya, trying to woo him with a pair of trousers. ^^;

This, however, was just a way to develop his relation with Onui, since she’s the only one who isn’t affected by the potion, being a dog and all. Even Sora falls for it in the end. I like how this anime already assumes that the viewer has understood that Onui is a dog. Anyway, we also finally get to see the reason why she turned into a human: she used to often play with Shunpei, hence her crush on him. To make things even better, it seemed that Shunpei had already figured out that that dog and Onui were the same person.

I just wonder… why the heck did Tetsuju recognize Onui when she was in her dog-form, trying to save Shumpei from his fate?

And regarding the main plot, Genzo discovers that the building-time of the rocket might take a bit longer than expected, and that at this rate, it’ll only get finished when Seikichi and Sora have become way too old. For that, Hiraga assembles an army of cats to help them. In the meantime, there is still no sign of Akai anywhere, so I’m really wondering what that guy has been up to.

I wish that episodes like these could continue forever, but I’m afraid that the plot is about to kick in again. I really wonder what the creators have in mind for the climax, as they must want to try and surpass the climax in episode 20. The best thing would be to not lse the humour in the process. There haven’t been many comedies with a good ending, and even though Ooedo Rocket spent more time than average on its plot-development, the fact still remains that it’s much more fun to see the characters just interacting.

Oh, and about the download link for this episode: it’ll come up soon, but Megaupload is currently being a bitch and refuses to upload it.

Posted on 23 August 2007 with categories: Ooedo Rocket


Before I start with the usual episode, I’d like to share the following:

Ooedo rocket – 19
Ooedo rocket – 20
Ooedo rocket – 21

For some reason, no new raws have appeared at all on Tokyo Toshokan, so Kallen requested these. It would be great if someone would host these on a torrent and submit to Tokyo Toshokan, for those who can’t use Megaupload or don’t follow this site. It reminds me of last year, when the same happened to Sasami Mahou Shoujo Club. It’s such a shame that even the raw providers don’t bother with such excellent shows, though it’s great to see that Shinsen Subs are starting to release subs for this series, They’re up to episode eight already.

Anyway, you don’t want to miss any second of this episode, as it’s one of the most hilarious of the entire series. It’s one of these episodes that are completely devoted to comedy and characters-development, while the story takes a step back, and it works perfectly. I finally realize that this is one of the few shows where the building-up scenes are better than the actual climaxes, just because it’s a delight to see al the different characters interact with each other.

Basically, this episode revolves around a play, organized by O-Ise, probably to raise money for the rocket-developments. The entire thing looks completely improvised, and things keep screwing up, but people sure do have fun in the process!! Another interesting thing is that it’s a play, based on Kaguya-hime, but with Seikichi and Sora not in the main roles. Tenhou is the prince (she looks awesome, dressed as Seikichi, by the way), Hiraga Gennai is the farmer who digs Kaguya-hime up, Tenten is the leader of the government officials (combined with a grat accent), with Santa, Shinza and Rokubei as his underlings. Sora plays the voice of Kaguya-hime, and as for Kaguya-hime herself… *grin*

Probably one of the biggest reasons behind the success of this episode was the following: Genzo returns!!!! Finally our hero gets his original form back, and the result turns out awesome. He gets to play the role of Kaguya-hime because of his feminine features as well, and I’m so glad that we finally see him as a normal human again. O-Ise also was brilliant in her role as manager, and not to mention her new costume.

The several interruptions to the play also were hilarious. Both Tetsugyu and Kagiya try to intervene, with hilarious results. Oh, and Shinza falls in love with Genzo in the middle of his acting, and Seikichi blows up the entire stage near the end of the play. ^^;

There also were quite a few subtle jokes in this episode. It again took another jab at modern technology with a new version of the ambulance, and even though people could communicate via earphones, I spotted a tin can, attached to a string at one point. ^^; There’s also a strange cameo from Gurren Lagann, who showed up at random times. I’m not really sure what that one was about. ^^;

Posted on 16 August 2007 with categories: Ooedo Rocket


Aha! After Toward the Terra and Claymore Ooedo Rocket will also start its final arc with the next episode. That’s when Seikichi really is going to have to prove himself to take Sora to the moon. His problems with the police will be over now, people don’t have any more secrets for each other, the characters have been fleshed out, and pretty much all roles are set. It’s there where this anime is going to have to prove itself. I’m afraid to say it, but this and the past episode felt a bit weird, and the introduction of an arc-based plot wasn’t as interesting as the individual episodes of the first half, and the time they spent on building up.

The next arc is going to have to prove whether this series succeeds or fails, as it can still go anywhere. It all depends on the character-development. The characters now have their bases built up nicely, now it’s time for the creators to use them. By far the most interesting scenes of the past few episodes were the ones that developed the characters, and not the plot. It’ll basically be Sora and Keiichi vs Akai, now that the blue monsters from the sky are dead. At least, I think they are. The first one definitely is gone, but the death of the third one doesn’t follow the golden rule of anime: unless you see a character die, he’ll live. Blue monster from the sky definitely is gone now; she had her arm ripped off and was in the middle of an explosion. Though the third one, the one who was more dangerous at that time, could have escaped. There’s got to be a meaning to that scene where he attacked the hunter who betrayed the others.

Ghost Hunt showed that it’s possible: its final arc was definitely one of the best. It’s all going to have to depend on one thing: are the creators intending to end this series the standard way, or will they try to be original. Ghost Hunt’s final arc was great because it eliminated a main character for most of its time. Night Head Genesis had a great ending because the biggest threat was basically gone, which looks a lot like Ooedo Rocket right now.

Ah well, there are either four or six episodes left. That’s got to be enough for this situation, but for now I’m sceptical. I’ll have to see this one succeed before getting too optimistic.

Posted on 9 August 2007 with categories: Ooedo Rocket


Ah, a bullet-proof vest. That explains. In any case, the plot has been skyrocketing forward in the past few episodes. Already in the first five minutes of this one, Akai’s cover is blown, and he’s unmasked as a traitor. Hiraga Gennai gives the explanation as to how he managed to survive for more than a hundred years (some kind of immortality-potion?). His meddling also manages to make sure that everyone managed to escape from Torii, who also showed up afterwards. The only casualty is one eye, which gets ripped out by Blue Monster from the Sky.

The rest of the episode focuses on Tetsuju. I’m not sure exactly how it happened, though one of his smaller bear-companions brainwashed him and made him think that the Third Blue Monster from the sky was his Kaguya-hime. Later, we see it dig up a humongous spaceship. I’m not sure where that one came from, actually. Was it the one used by Blue Monster from the Sky to get to earth? Then why was she so interested in Seikichi’s gunpowder?

My favourite character in this episode was yet again Akai. Not only does his secret go out, he’s also accused of cosplaying. And despite the rather cold relationship the two of them have been having for the past episodes, it was really cute to see both Akai and Blue Monster from the Sky together, when they’re both in trouble. Later in the episode, we also see another fight between Akai and Ginjiro, and it was as great as always. ^_^

The thing is that there are still 7 episodes left, while the story could be resolved in two of them. What are the creators planning for a finale? So far, Ooedo Rocket has been definitely entertaining, but nothing extraordinary has happened yet. Could this have been saved for the final episodes? I do hope so!

Posted on 2 August 2007 with categories: Ooedo Rocket


While the previous episode was all about the characters, this episode is all about the story, and its beauty lied in the different plot twists that we saw in it. While the episode was less touching than the previous ones, the plot twists were both wacky and shocking enough to make this episode worthwhile.

In chronological order. Kinjiro can’t do anything in the open, due to his position, but he leaves a message on an on-line forum, telling about a secret doorway inside the prison (yes, an on-line forum). Kagaya and the others help him to get there.

We learn that O-Ise wields a strange Yo-yo, Tenhou carries throwing knifes and Tenten uses a construction of strange pens as weapon. If I recall correctly, it was around that time that only Samurai were allowed to wield swords, and I must say that they’ve found creative ways to avoid this rule. In any case, they use this to save Ginjiro from Torii, after he officially abandoned them in favour of Sora.

This is a strange one. The third blue monster of the sky runs into Tetsuju, and the two make friends due to his strange personality and affinity with gunpowder. I seriously have no idea what’s going to happen with the two of them, but I’m really glad to see that Tetsuju will be appearing more frequently. ^_^

Hiraga can walk! He appears to be ore eccentric than I already thought, by letting himself get carried around by his “concubines”. He sure gave both me and Ginjiro quite a scare when he revealed this. He also seems to be an acquaintance of Mizuno. Why this is useful, we’ll learn in the next episode.

Tenhou, Tenten and O-Ise spy around in Akai’s house, and find out that he’s affiliated with the blue monster of the sky, and they recieve clues that he might be the one after the serial killings. While he’s been on fire for the past few episodes, this twist should make it more difficult for him in the next episode.

The episode ends with quite a nasty cliff-hanger. Sora seems to have accepted that she doesn’t belong with Seikichi, but she eventually agrees to escape from prison along with him. Akai then shows up, and then pretends to help the two of them escape, only to aim a freakin’ gun at Seikichi when he doesn’t look! The question is obviously not whether Seikichi will survive or not, due to one of the golden rules of anime, which says that main characters don’t die, unless it’s the final episode, but how he’ll survive. That gun had enough time to be properly aimed at Seikichi, Sora wasn’t near enough to protect him. What I suspect what happened was that Akai probably didn’t aim well enough, and only managed to hit Seikichi’s arm, leg, or any other body-part that isn’t fatal.

I also loved the small parodies with Tenhou and Tenten, sitting in the internet-cafe. It’s nice to see that Madhouse actually put more of a meaning behind its Death Note reference than Lucky Star is currently doing. That line “Shinigami only eat apples” was meant to confuse L, which is exactly what it does in the context in which Ooedo Rocket uses it. ^^;

On a side-note: gg has suddenly released episodes 1 to 4 on Tokyo Toshokan. If you’re not following the raws, then go and check them out, and I’m glad that this series is being handled by such a quality-fansub group.

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  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 04:33 AM)
    Regarding making a living off Patreon: more power to them. If there is really such a demand for hentai and whatnot, then makes sense for people to supply that need. Only regret is that I haven’t came up with a scheme to make life easier for myslef.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 04:30 AM)
    @Kaiser: despite me liking Tue genre and the cast, I couldn’t get into Inherent Vice. I’m not really familiar with Pynchon either, so that could be it.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 04:29 AM)
    @SuperMario: have you browsed the Pentamerone fairytales? They are absurdly brutal in some cases. Not giving much away, but I actually preferred this to the knight in shining armor cliche. Times were tough for women in the 15th century, it’d be doing them a disservice to sugercoat that fact.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 02:30 AM)
    @Bam: Meant to ask you, are you a fan of Thomas Pynchon’s work?
    I re-watched Inherent vice today which was based on a book by him, complex noir thing, made more sense on second viewing and was pretty funny. Figured you’d be into it given its stoner fiction origins.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 02:23 AM)
    Some people literally do live off patreon though on drawing hentai art though as their sole income.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 02:18 AM)
    @Bam: I know that film by name but I will be watching it either now or tomorrow.
  • SuperMario
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 02:10 AM)
    Matteo Garrone directed Gomorrah (2008), Reality (2011) which all were screened at Cannes, as well as this one. I liked Tale of Tales well enough, the only thing that I don’t like about the film is the treatment of women. They paid their prices just because of their lust.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 01:30 AM)
    I ran into the weirdest movie last night: an English speaking French-British-Italian movie called Tale of Tales. Loosely based on the Pentamerone series of folklore, it was a pretty dark yet vibrant-looking collection of fairytales, slimly connected by a main plot. I don’t know much about this director Matteo Garrone, but he has a unique style.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 01:25 AM)
    @K-off: I think Patreon recipients mostly fail during the first year. Just as with Kickstarter, you only hear of a very few that result in anything worthwhile; and pointing at 2-3 successes in an ocean of failures doesn’t really imply effectiveness.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 1. 2016 01:21 AM)
    @Kaiser: Kaufman and Hoffman were a match made in heaven; also weird that they rhyme with each other.
    The only Kaufman match-up that might get close would be him and Spike Jonze working on a Nicholas Cage flick. That man is really a mystery to me.

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