Cowboy Bebop - Session 1
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Product Description Meet Spike and Jet, a drifter and a retired cyborg cop who have started a bounty hunting operation. In the converted ship the Bebop, Spike and Jet search the galaxy for criminals with bounties on their heads. They meet a lot of unusual characters, including the unusually intelligent dog, Ein, and the voluptuous and vexing femme fatale, Faye Valentine. See why Cowboy Bebop was Japan's best-selling anime title in 1998. Additional Features This DVD contains three more episodes from the imaginative and satisfying series that combines several genres, à la Blade Runner. Faye Valentine, the spunky, soon-to-be partner of Spike and Jet, is introduced in "Honky Tonk Women." Spike meets her in a giant casino where the most valuable item is a special poker chip. Faye and Spike cross paths again in "Gateway Shuffle," which starts with an eco-terrorist group going berserk and ends with an exciting race through space. Though plucky and resourceful in a Princess Leia type of way, Faye is nevertheless a bit too giggly (figuratively and literally), preventing a wider audience; the series is squarely in the shonen (for boys) anime scheme. The series' strong stories, mixture of bounty hunter and private eye themes, and outer space setting are dazzling, especially when fueled by the jazzy riffs of the soundtrack, creating a look and sound unlike any other anime series. Yoko Kanno's music is a key element in "Ballad of Fallen Angels," which lets us gain insight into Spike's mysterious past. Two set pieces are done entirely to counterbalanced music--an onstage aria sung to an action sequence and a dazzling flashback finale. An episode guide, character introductions, and a music clip of the catchy title number is also on this DVD. --Doug Thomas Amazon.com Each of these two snazzy 20-minute installments is a self-contained and satisfying adventure tale about a futuristic hipster bounty hunter, from the most popular Japanese animated TV series of 1998. This is elegant action-comedy anime, with smoothly integrated CGI space-flight elements, gorgeous graphics, blues harmonica and sax riffs on the soundtrack, and a no-sweat post-Tarantino attitude. Despite occasional eruptions of gun-fu Asian-action violence, and some intimations of heavy-duty drug use (one especially noxious narcotic is administered as an aerosol spray, straight onto the user's eyeballs), the tone is surprisingly convivial. None of the generic tough elements are grim or mean-spirited. Lanky antihero Spike Spiegel is a planet-hopping bounty hunter with a cyborg sidekick and a genetically enhanced Welsh Corgi assistant, and as many wisecracks as punches get thrown. The emphasis is on clever twists of plot in an episodic short-story format. --David Chute