Even though I’m the president of the Japanese Animated Movie club (JAM) at my school, I’m a real newbie when it comes to anime. I had only two videos at the start of the year, so whenever I showed an anime at school, it was one I had just bought the day before and hadn’t seen myself. Now I’ve got about 15 videos. But my vice president, Shane, isn’t new to the field. He’s seen almost everything there is to see. And that’s why he never comes to the club to watch anything.
But Shane brought an anime of his own in this past week – the first three episodes of the 1984 classic series, Fist of the North Star. This series must have been the funniest thing that anyone in the whole room had ever seen (and turnout was really good, because Shane advertised around). It is so goddamn AWFUL that there was not one scene that did not make us crack up.
Fist of the North star, as far as I can tell, is about this REALLY MUSCULAR guy named Kenshiro, who regrows shirts faster than they’re ripped off. His eyebrows take up about half of his head, and his pectorial muscles are about five times bigger than his head. Kenshiro just appears one day and starts killing bad guys, and starts getting followed by this REALLY annoying theif named Butz or something. This really handsome man (VA’d by this guy who’s probably in every anime I own) starts sending these big thugs to kill Kenshiro, and they all die horrible deaths by having their heads explode, through a mystical power known only as Hotto Shinken.
It’s pretty hard to explain how horrible this anime is. For one thing, Manga Video made it worse (if possible) by making a new intro (consisting of exploding heads), a new soundtrack (by “underground” euro drum ‘n’ bass pieces of shit), and a terrible translation of a probably terrible original Japanese script. Next, in every episode, Kenshiro does the same thing – fights a giant thug with a mohawk and easily kills him with “FIVE FINGERED COW FLOP OF FINGERS!” or “SCREAMING AND YELLING DEATH EJACULATION!” (which is typed and screamed after the move is executed), and then walks off, forgetting that his sidekick Butz has this ATV thingy for him that he built himself. The dialogue pretty much goes like this:
Kenshiro has just performed a Hotto Shinken move, and his jacket and shirt are torn off from his pulasting chest.
Kenshiro: You know, I just performed a “WILD BIRDO MOTHER EATING HOO-HAH” which pokes your pressure points, and you are going to die in 28.462 seconds.
Spade: What? No I’m not!
*digital countdown timer appears on screen*
Spade: UWAAAA!!! *head bubbles and explodes*
Butz: Ken, you did it! Yay! I’m so happy!
A few minutes later, Kenshiro’s shirt has returned.
Oh yeah… and the animation? Well, cut the quality of Dragonball Z’s animation in half (it is produced by Toei Animation, BTW), make the characters look different (and very silly) in each scene, and use the same scenes in every episode. That’s pretty much it.
On a final note, I’ve heard there’s a FILMED, BRITISH MOVIE based on this show, and a video game too, where you CAN’T LOSE. I don’t think I need to elaborate.