Anime Baka

Anime - Japanese Animation
Baka - Japanese word for idiot or fool

Loosely put an Anime Baka is someone who's crazy about Anime. However interpretation's may vary. I tend to think of Anime Baka as meaning something like drooling fan boy/girl.


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Wrote this a long time ago. Too short for an article:
Perverted - Hentai in Japanese. But the word pervert means deviation from normal or accepted. So, how can all guys be perverts?

Did you ever notice that the sex scene in the movie is generally at about the same realative place as the guitar solo in a song?

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Anime Baka reviews

Anime - Kinos Journey 4 of 5

My wife bought this anime for me and it came as a little compressed release form ADV. I figured it probably wasn't a big release as she said it was $30-40 for the whole series.

I think I know what happened. This series is not for action mavens. If DBZ is your lot, don't even bother reading this. This is a quite serious and quite cool series. It is rather amazing that it holds interest despite being almost totally dead pan. It makes you think about yourself. It's almost a series of poems. So far I'd recommend it for just about anyone over the age of 14. Younger than that probably wouldn't be entertained by it and wouldn't understand the upper stuff.

Kino is a traveler, visiting each country for 3 days (no more). Her companion is a talking Motorcycle named Hermes. In this world it seems common for machines to be able to talk. The two experience the world they travel through and talk about it.

I checked a couple sites. One listed it as #66 in the top 100 anime of all time. Another gave it 9.2 out of 10.

Violence: Can be very violent, but not very often and the violence is generally discussed rationally between the characters.

Ecchi: The most provocative thing I've seen so far is the cover art for the DVDs and that's actually very mild. If there is eventually something ecchi, I'd expect it to be necessary to the story being told.

Drama: Lots of drama.

Action: Occasional bouts, generally related to violence. Other than that this show should put you to sleep, but doesn't.

Cuteness: Not much here. Kino was kind of cute at 12 years old, but no more so than other 12 year olds. The talking motorcycle even manages not to be cute.

Horror: Why different from violence? Well it just is. There is a lot of Horror here. There are lots of things that are nice and pleasant on the surface, but dark and evil underneath. Hence the stories.

We were tired when we started watching it. We weren't tired when the disk finished at 2AM, but we didn't dare crack the second disk.

Well we've finished the series. It's so very odd. It's a little slow, but that's how it is. The slowness is a part of it something like a zen tea party. I feel it was one of the best animes I've ever seen. My wife was a little surprised by this statement, but also enjoyed it very much. The ending was not a dramatic conclusion, but instead was a little more Japanese leaving the characters to go on in your head. Indeed they could have another season.

To me Kino's Journey is a Heroes journey, much like the ancient Greek writings. Kino travels from country to country observing the differences and thinking about what it all means. Almost all of the countries have something dark at the center that makes them the way they are.

Towards the middle of the series there is a two-episode story about a country that has a coliseum and gladiators of a fashion. It is rather violent and contains almost all of the action for the whole series, but not without much discussion involving the insane chaotic king.

Ok, here's a bit of an example story. Don't read if you don't want to.

In late winter Kino comes across three men huddled together in a tent starving to death next to a truck. They tell her that they got stuck early in the winter and some time ago had exhausted all the food they had with them. Kino tells them that she does not have enough rations to share with them, but that she will hunt for them until they can manage for themselves.

She manages to shoot rabbits emerging from hibernation and prepares rabbit stew for the men. She is very reverent towards the rabbits during this process and talks to her companion (the motorcycle) about the irony. She does not love or hate the rabbits. She does not love or hate the men. But yet she is killing the one to save the other. She says that killing game for herself to eat is different as it is the cost of her existence (she put this a little more eloquently than I remembered here). Her companion says that it is normal for her to protect her own kind at the cost of the rabbit’s lives, but she is not entirely satisfied by this.

I will not give away the ending of the story, but this sort of parable like telling is the norm throughout the series. Often there is evil, but generally it has a reason to be there (like in most anime). In one country there is a cruel yearly ritual that kills hundreds, but the presence of this ritual stopped centuries of war that had killed millions and well might have lead to the end of the world. The matriarch of the country says to Kino, "Yes it is cruel, and if you can come up with a better solution I am open to it."


Copyright © 2010 Walter Hansen

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