Anime Meta-Review


Initial D


By Date




Title Info

  • seen: 1-8 of 26
  • type: TV
  • grade: watchable
  • made: unknown
  • Review created: Recently, but I didn't record the date.
  • mod: none

What a specialized little anime this is. It really will have appeal primarily to one group, petrol-heads. Although I suspect the majority of the fans will be virtual petrol-heads, ie. those badly addicted to console racing games. The story largely follows three students, one is a male wanna-be petrol-head, one a sleepy looking guy who doesn't get the whole thing and a female destined to be the romantic interest (but busy being a school-girl prostitute in the meantime). These three get dragged into a competition between the local petrol-heads and some challengers determined to destroy the pride of the local racers. Things look bad for the locals, being way outclassed, until one hears a story about the fastest car on the mountain belonging to a tofu shop that does 4 o'clock deliveries. When the said car shows up, and casually defeats one of the challengers, the hunt for the driver is on. Not that he cares, he's got romantic issues on his mind, and besides, he's always so sleepy from the deliveries.

I was going to slap this one hard, and there certainly are no shortage of reasons to do so. The topic bores me stupid (but it bores the main character as well), the story is simplistic and I cannot imagine how it will be stretched out, the characters are shallow and the production has problems of its own. This really is very average anime. However, like driving games themselves, there's a sort of mindless watchability to it. The very simple story, with everything pretty obvious way before it happens, sucks you into the simplistic action. Partly because it takes so long to make any story progress that you can't help but become curious about how things are going to turn out (even though you know). Of course the whole `Japanese pride' thing seems to tie in pretty well to the whole `motor-head pride' thing. At the end of the day I simply cannot call this flawed because it does meet its unambitious aims. As such it makes a reasonable, albeit primitive and mindless, anime experiences...but I sure wouldn't pay money for the priviledge of experiencing this dubious pleasure, and I can't imagine wanting to watch it more than once.

In some ways I guess I have to give the story some respect for being interesting enough to survive the pretty awful production. From the opening with Japanese Rap music you know you are experiencing a show trying hard to be cool but destined to be average. This leads on to some truly awful character art and character animation which looks strange, lazy and unattractive. The horror is amplified when you see the cars, which after all get more time than most characters. They are done in some of the most primitive and horrible computer graphics with a physics model seemingly inherited from slot cars or racing games. Lots of skidding around the track which looks completely unreal and largely inert, more like some deranged toy than real cars. This combines with some of the poorest merging of cell and computer animation yet seen. The cardboard cut-out crowd during the race scenes has to be seen to be believed. Simple dialog is amplified by unsubtle voices and mindless `high energy' music which sounds a lot like a computer game soundtrack. This is very, very average production indeed.

The only review from my regular sites comes from Lord Carnage but that's fine, because it's a good (and long) review. Carnage's comments on the target audience (and the rapper) are hilarious, although he identifies the voices as `big names'. Fooled me, they sounded crappy to me, way too over the top (or largely asleep for the lead). In case you can't guess, he doesn't recommend this one.


Words by Andrew Shelton, Web by Ticti, Last Compile: Wed Aug 5 12:39:20 WST 2009