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[Anime Review] - PeaceMaker Kurogane

Son Goku

No lover of dogma
I haven't exactly finished it, but have seen 20 out of 24 episodes... The DVDs haven't been completely been released, so for now one needs a downloaded fansub to see beyond. I haven't really done reviews in the past, so plz bare with me if I should leave some important details out, include something I perhaps shouldn't, etc...

The story is centered around the events of 1864 Japan, in the conflict that existed between the Chioshiu (sp? though spelling's I've seen include character combinations which simply don't occur in Japan's 2 kana based writting systems) rebels and the Shinsengumi. For those who have seen the "The Last Samuari", the events being referenced in this story would precede the events in that given movie... A little background:


The chaotic events that preceded the Meiji era (1868-1912), the period where medieval Japan, which had been kept in isolation by the Tokugawa Shogunate (Bakufu) for more than two centuries, stepped into modernism, have always been a source of fascination for both Japanese and non-Japanese alike. The events in question started with the rather innocuous 1853 arrival, in Uraga bay, of the American "Black Ships" commanded by Commodore Matthew Perry. Perry had transmitted to the Shogun a letter from President Willard Filmore, a letter whose content boiled down to this: "stop your isolationist policies or else". The Shogun, afraid of losing power, had then accepted to make certain concessions. This provoked a feud between those wanting to protect Japan's integrity and its allegiance to the Bakufu (the Emperor and his court were favorable to the Bakufu, but for their own reasons...), and the Reformist (foremost the Choshu and Satsuma clans) who wanted Japan to step into the modern world. Thus started a bloody, yet relatively secret war between two ideologies.
Also background to the story is the past wrt Tetsu (as well as Tatsu), and also Suzu. In the case of Tetsu, his father was a foreigner though his mother was Japanese. Both his parents were killed when he was a child, and he, never quite able to get over his feelings wrt these events, shows up the first episode wanting to join the Shinsengumi to take revenge upon his parent's killers
(the Chioshiu, and though never directly stated, can be implied that the killer was none other then Suzu's own master) . Suzu on the other hand joined with the Chioushiu after a member of his family was killed by the Shinsengumi. In fact, the two characters are very much alike, keep running into each other, and become friends. But unbeknownst to either, they're both on opposite sides of the same conflict, both having joined the side they did for much the same reason.

The last part I've thus far seen, was after Suzu's master had seen his pupil (and prodidgey), with Tetsu, and latter ordered him to kill "that filth". Suzu pulled him out, much as his master directed, but at the moment (with Tetsu becomming suspiscious) couldn't go through with it. His master caste him aside, held Tetsu at sword point (with Suzu begging him to stop) and was holding Tetsu there, looking very much as a crazed demon ready to kill. Suzu was outside crying, much the same he did when he witnessed his own family killed by the Shinsengumi...

The anime does include many of the historical characters from this era, such as Souji, Hijikata, Kondou, and the like. It probably also adds a few others (Tetsu, his brother Tatsunosuki, Suzu might have been added as well.) From the director's own indication, his aim with his presentation of it, was to include many of his impressions and sentiments looking at this period of his nation's history, then give a straight out verbatum account of each event however... The result of this is that a certain level of depth or "feeling" if you will is added to the story, that looking over it, seems to work well.

It was worth watching, and would be recommended. 4.5 out of 5 OSNN stars...
Yeah that was a cool series to watch. If you're intersted I can provide bittorrent links for fansubbed stuff (this is unlicensed in the usa so for the most part legally obtainable)

Son Goku

No lover of dogma
Thanks, though I already have a fansub on my comp... :D I've got the DVDs up through 3 so far (4 was released, but not the best time with me, so will have to pick it up this month sometime, 5 comming out soon). Didn't want to get into how I saw up to ep 20 so far, as the answer is bit-torrent... Something I'm sure many of us have used, but as to mentioning it, not sure how well that would go over with mods/admins here...

BTW, not all moments are as serious as I mentioned, and in the link I provided, they were quite correct. Many of the chars like Souji and the like can be rather playful one moment (such as when she took Hijikata's hiakou book and it found it's way around to the various squadron captains who were laughing hysterically mistakenly thinking Tetsu wrote it), but turn into a quite efficient killer (demon) the next... :D
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OSNN Senior Addict
Strange because I was browsing through the anime at Best Buy and I saw this.

Ended up getting the first DVD to see what it was like, and now I'm hooked. Just waiting for them to release the rest.

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