Genjou Sanzou is a Buddhist monk who has been sent by the Emperor on a journey to find the sacred Buddhist scriptures. One day, Sanzou meets an Earth Deity who tells him that Buddha has sent him a disciple: the mischievous Monkey Deity Son Goku, who was sealed inside of a mountain for five hundred years after wreaking havoc in Heaven! Together with the alcohol-loving playboy Cho Hakkai; the heavenly army General Sagojyou; and their horse, the Dragon Crown Prince Ryuuba; there are plenty of adventures to be had from fighting off monsters to bishounen contests.
A beautifully androgynous young master, in search of the holy scriptures of Buddha and to deliver a gift to the emperor, has various adventures through the dangers of the countyside on his journey. Along the way, he is provided a disciple as a bodyguard, Son Goku, a mischevious monkey with a love for pennies and always ready with insolent wit or a power staff of protection. He also finds various steamy situations from a few beings entranced by his beauty or who wish to use his body.
I am a yaoi fan, love bishounen, and also like lighter shounen-ai anime and manga as well. As
a gay guy, even some of the ones that are suppose to be light-hearted or comedy too often have characters that are too little like real guys, gay, bi or otherwise, from my perspective and experience. So it's hard for me to find them really enjoyable, especially when they are trying to represent supposedly real gays, bis and others. They try too hard, and still don't get it right. Then you have a series like this that is kinda making fun of the gay/bi stereotypes anyway, and it comes off really hilarious. It's fun for pure fun's sake.
The art style is in the classic mode though it aired in 2005. It won't appeal to everyone, especially those usually to the razor-edge cut looking stuff, but since I started watching anime in the 90s, I love it! I love the classic look, and it's done well in this.
Characters & Sound:
The characters were fun, if stereotypical: bishounen vunerable beauty, a cat-quick mysterious warrior who appears and disappears (and sometimes seduces the bishounen) and the fool. You may recognize some references from the DragonballZ series, super saiyens, Goku, etc. but it's not distracting. I wasn't a fan of DBZ, but I didn't mind the tie-ins because they worked well. I'm deaf, so I can't give you indication about sound, sorry!
Enjoyment & Overall:
I completely enjoyed the series, it was fun and laugh out loud often. The story wasn't overly complex though a little average: guy on a quest with lots of trouble along the way, and I like the sexy little yaoi bits throughout. Overall, I gave it an 8. Each episode was just under 10mins, so I would have liked them longer, but for the dramatic comedy style it was effective. You were surprised, made to laugh, moan a little at the sexiness and then you were laughing again!
The original Patalliro! dates way back to the early 80's and did something no other anime did before: it depicted Boy's Love on television. Not in the way it's done nowadays, Patalliro! was more like a big parody of the genre, but still gay relationships were an essential part.
So no one should be surprised that its spin-off, Patalliro Sayuki!, deals with the topic in a similar fashion. Don't like two guys kissing each other? Then you might want to turn back and watch something else instead. Shounen-Ai may not be the main topic here, but there is still plenty
of it along the way.
Patalliro Sayuki!, like DragonBall, is loosely based on Wu Cheng'en's Journey to the West, so the story might feel familiar.
The monk Sanzō ventures on a journey from China to India in order to obtain several Buddhist scrolls. On his way he is accompanied by three companions to protect him on his quest: the monkey king Son Gokū, Cho Hakkai who is part pig, part human and Sa Gojo, a former general of Heaven. And of course there is danger lurking along the way.
Since this is a comedy you shouldn't expect too much accuracy when it comes to its source material; some essential parts are there, but don't be surprised if the characters possess advanced technology or encounter an alien. Sadly the story is far from finished in the end. Then again, every episode is only about 10 minutes long (opening and ending included), so there is hardly enough time to go into detail. Due to the lack of time, conflicts are resolved rather simply and quickly, mainly through comic relief. However I would lie if I said it isn't entertaining to watch. Sure most jokes aren't exactly deep, still it had me laughing out loud a couple of times.
Animation wise Patalliro Sayuki! isn't breathtaking, but it does its job. Honestly, I didn't expect too much from a gag-anime, and for that it looks nice.
Most of the characters have an equivalent in the original Patalliro!, but you don't need to watch it in order to understand it. (though I think it might be a little more enjoyable, if you roughly know the original, since there are quite a few Easter Eggs) Everybody is exactly what they seem to be and they don't really have any significant development. Then again, since they are mostly there to deliver the jokes, it doesn't really matter.
Some of the cast are incredibly pretty and could easily pass as female if the anime didn't tell you otherwise. There were a few where I was honestly puzzled if I was looking at a guy or a girl.
As for the BL, as mentioned it is there, but it is neither too explicit nor is it the shows main focus. It may strike some people as odd, since some of the main characters are monks/ Buddhist disciples. However sexual relationships between monks and their disciples (as mentioned here) weren't actually uncommon in Japan and China. What do you know, historically it isn't even completely inaccurate.
All in all Patalliro Sayuki! is not the most incredible thing you'll ever lie your eyes upon, but as a light-hearted comedy-show it does a good job. If the BL doesn't put you off and you like Journey to the West you might want to take a look. Just don't take it too seriously.