Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Nov 25, 1988 to Feb 25, 1994
52 min. per episode
R+ - Mild Nudity
L represents licensing company
Score: 6.691 (scored by 1252 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
SynopsisYo Hinomura was an ordinary Japanese potter when a run-in with a Chinese mafia changed his life forever. Now an assassin for the 108 Dragons, Yo is the perfect killing machine. As a sign for remorse over his victims, he sheds tears after eliminating his targets. Because of this, he is infamously known by the Dragons and every crime syndicate in the world as "Crying Freeman."
Related AnimeAdaptation: Crying Freeman
Characters & Voice Actors
What do you get when you cross Sanctuary's setting, Hellsing's brutality, miscellaneous porn, and a storyline about as deep as Bleach? Crying Freeman.
Crying Freeman is a potter that apparently seemed skilled to the Chinese mafia "108 Dragons". Through the magic of acupuncture, he becomes their ultimate assassin slave. He's programmed to do their dirty work despite how it tears up him inside and makes him cry. However, he quite evidently does have free will and he exercises it regularly. He doesn't cry out of pity for his victims; he often CHOOSES to kill people entirely on his own, then he cries simply because that's the gimmick. In the first episode, he goes from slave to leader of 108 Dragons because... uh... because. Yep, by the end of the first episode, they've already ruined everything that's supposed to catch your attention.
The storyline is nonsensical at best. Beyond Freeman's hasty promotion, there's no development or purpose whatsoever. You can bet your ass there isn't a proper ending, so don't get suckered into watching the whole thing like I did if that's what you're hoping for. The characters contradict themselves. Freeman, an innocent man that goes out looking for trouble and killing people since that's what he does. Wife of Freeman, a delicate woman that would rather dance naked in front of a bloodthirsty gang than kill them when she has a sword in hand because she has no intentions of killing anyone, but she does it a lot later on. Each episode kinda has a plot, but it's always really stupid.
In one episode, 10 people jump in front of Freeman one after another to take bullets for him... instead of one person sacrificing himself and everyone else pulling out a gun to kill the assailant. I couldn't take it seriously; I started laughing at how utterly stupid it was.
There's so much completely needless nudity in this series. The first episode has a couple of sex scenes; why they felt it was so urgent to show us, I do not know. It adds nothing to the story whatsoever. Was it to try and show the characters are in love? Not at all. They go on about how deep their love is, but it's total bullshit. Freeman has sex with other women even though he's married. It was only AFTER he had some with some random woman that he asked her for her phone number, which she didn't even give to him. Yeah, that's some deep love there. After catching on, I skipped the sex scenes and nothing of value was lost. He preaches about his views on love in one episode and talks down to someone that believes love is about living for your partner. The guy he was insulting happened to be a rapist, but still, that's pretty arrogant.
Anyhow, the nudity. This annoying, obese woman, Bayasan, is clothed one moment, then she's naked the next for no reason at all. She didn't even fight or anything while naked. They went home and simply didn't speak of it. The main characters often strip down before or during fighting, or sometimes they're simply naked from the get go.
The violence is top notch. There's lots of blood and killing, and not in your usual way. It's often either swift assassin work with a knife or it's a knife fight. The animation is really cool for both, as well as all other fight/killing scenes. The knife fights are really badass with how the fighters are kinda hunched over with a knife in hand, slowly circling or moving towards each other, swinging and dodging elegantly. The art is very nice and the animation is detailed and smooth.
I feel that I've been betrayed. I could let one sex scene slide; I didn't think there'd be shit like that in every episode. I didn't think this would be ero. If anything, I thought it'd be the opposite; a sad story about an assassin that wishes he could stop killing people. He shouldn't have been made the leader of 108 Dragons, he never should've had any personal motives to kill, and he shouldn't have been such a slut. A proper ending was too much to ask for since there wasn't even a proper storyline to begin with.
This was somewhat enjoyable and its cheesiness made me laugh at times. The action scenes are awesome, the sex isn't need nor wanted (go watch some porn on your own time if you must; leave it out of my entertainment). To be frank, I'd only recommend this to a handful of people with perverse taste. Otherwise, don't bother watching it. read more
Crying Freeman is the adaptation of a renowned graphic novel manga. Unlike 99.99% of anime, it hardly censored the gruesome violence and the extreme sex scenes in it. It even has a never before seen again trait in battles: The characters strip butt naked in order to have complete freedom in movement! For them, armors are just a hindrance if you can outrun bullets.
STORY & CHARACTER SECTION: 5/10 [An interesting looking box with nothing inside.]
A Japanese artist is trained by force by the Chinese mafia to become Crying Freeman, the world’s deadliest assassin. He is sent to avenge the damage other organizations have done to his trainers and falls in love with a woman on the way.
Oh, yes, another series with an ultra-powerful heavy-dude, bound on revenge. Got my share of those; no more, thank you. At least, this heavy-dude has a feint trait that sets him apart from all those billions of counterparts. He cries every time he kills! And he is not an emotionless killer, as he never kills those he judges as innocent. Beyond this trait, he is as stale and shallow as a dried up bog.
Surprisingly, the character with the most character development and interest is the woman he loves. Not only she is a sex-bomb (and if you like glass fetishes, an ultra sex-bomb!) but also she passes through several changes in personality and fighting capabilities (won’t say more for fear of spoiling it). I almost believe she should be the real protagonist. Or maybe she represents the training and evolution Freeman also experienced in the past that we never got to watch… Oh, well, whatever the reason, she is by far the most interesting character, even if she doesn’t get the screen time she deserves.
All the rest of the characters are there for flavor. They are either stereotypical villains that die in the same episode or misjudged criminals that Freeman befriends. They all look and act different but are otherwise as real as carton boxes.
The story is only 6 episodes long but it constantly changes themes, villains and locations, thus it hardly gets repeating or boring. The plot is always about protecting or killing someone but you hardly think about it as you watch.
In general, it is a very cliché story with stereotypical characters. But the unique traits of the two main characters and their graphic-novel-like presence in it (read below for more) give them some credit.
ART SECTION: 8/10 [Everything looks so real!]
I couldn’t believe that such realism was possible back in the time the series was made. But it turns out it was. To get a picture, it puts Fist Of The North Star (a much similar-themed series) to shame. Some stale images and lack of realism in battle choreographies ruin a perfect score but for the most part it’s awesome!
Also, there is an awful amount of sex and violence in it that makes even Elfen Lied to appear silly (no kidding!). You are literally absorbed by either the really cool animal tattoos, worked out male body figures, really slim and sexy female figures, boner-invoking nude and sex scenes (genitalia are invisible because of the law restrictions back then) or the Hong Kong movie-reminiscent battle scenes. There are even detailed facial expressions and lip sync present here but that turned out to be a problem (read below why).
SOUND SECTION: 5/10 [Oh, my ears hurt!]
The music themes were boring and most voices were either fake or flat. It’s a real shame to see so well made detailed facial expressions and lip-sync to be wasted because of such amateur voice actors.
VALUE & ENJOYMENT SECTION: 5/10 [Sex and violence always sell.]
The several action and sex scenes are a major attraction. This is boosted further by animation of graphic novel proportions. But it drops down again by the lack of realism (Freeman outruns even a volley of bullets), plot twists (Freeman is clearly the winner from the start) and the overused seduction theme (there isn’t a female character that Freeman didn’t kill and didn’t had sex with).
VERDICT: 5.5 / 10
The accused is found … GUILTY! … For thinking good looks alone can make you successful.
Well, I haven’t seen any other anime with Chinese mafia in it. Similar themed series are:
Elfen Lied. A lot less realistic but a lot kinkier.
Fist Of The North Star. A lot less realistic but a lot more interesting.
Berserk. A far better version of the same basic story. read more
Opening ThemeNo opening themes found, add themes.
Ending ThemeNo ending themes found, add themes.
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