The story starts off with a face-off between two rival heroes, ZET and ALPHAS, and then traces their origins - Jin Kanzaki, a young man with the ability to transform into a superhuman being known as ZET, and Kouga Amagi, a young man with a strong sense of justice who uses technology to fight as ALPHAS.
The fates of these two men and those around them intertwine as they fight to protect mankind and destroy monstrous abominations known as Players.
"To be the man, you gotta beat the man".
- Ric Flair
Being a superhero is never easy, especially when you try to live a double life. Superheroes like Batman, Superman, and Spiderman deals with the dangers they get exposed to on a daily basis. They feel like it's their responsibility to protect the innocent and deliver that strong sense of justice. After all, justice is the judgement of truth and to uphold such a sense comes at a great responsibility, sacrifice, and lives.
Then there comes a hero at the darkest hour. He is ZET. Enter Zetman.
The story is set in the modern times with
technology that passes our own in the real world. Such technology of course brings forth wealth, prosperity, hope, but also crime and monstrosity. Luckily for the good folks, we have heroes.
Now, to call Jin a superhero would be an overstatement. He is in fact some of us see as a dark hero of vengeance. Or maybe, we should call him a dark angel. Because of his efforts, lives are saved but not without a cost. That's the price of being a hero. Sometimes, you just can't save everyone. Yet Jin is an interesting character if we look at him carefully. He is quite the mysterious figure and for most of us, difficult to read. After witnessing the tragedies of his past, Jin swears vengeance and to never let anyone else close to him die again. Now that my friends makes him the dark hero, the dark angel, and the holder of justice in a different light.
Then, we have somewhat of the antithesis of the story, Kouge Amagi. Both academically and sports-inclined, he is also popular and has nearly everything he's ever wanted...wealth, admirers, and a family. Yet, there's one thing he seems to be missing and always wanted. That would be his dream of becoming a hero of justice, one that people admire, one that people respect, and one that helps the helpless. Unlike Jin however, Amagi's desire to become such a hero is quite on the opposite globe. (rather than for vengeance to say the least) In his mind, justice should be delivered and enemies of justice will be terminated. Bu it's a lot said easier than done.
We also have some of the other characters that lighten up the gloom and doom story a bit. The all innocent Konoha Amagi, and sister of Kouga, who has known Jin since their childhood times. The tomboy Hanako who has a curiosity in our dark hero (who also holds a dark secret) and among others. They tend to balance out the dark atmosphere and brings a little light as well as entertainment into the story.
Now for the story. I'll best honest here, it's not really well performed. There's always a risk of making an anime adaptation off of a manga but even more so in this case because the amount of material it covers. There's a lot of potential and believe me, I want to see it at its finest form. Yet what I see so far is a rushed story based off a manga of over 150 chapters. It doesn't also help with the fact that the series only runs for 13 episodes. Thirteen episodes I'd repeat again! With that unlucky number, my hopes for the overall story is a little bit down with its rushed sequences. All in honesty, it kinda feels like reading a story with chapters missing. Oh yes, there are some awesome fights and blood gore if you can take it in the stomach. However, it feels that a piece of excitement is missing. This series could become a real blockbuster made for mature audiences with its old school action and violence. Yet with only 13 episodes, I just don't see how it could out perform some of the other longer series of this Spring. Maybe our heroes can save this series from being sent into turmoil.
As for the art, the series seems to adapt a bit of old school. With the old school-like art, it certainly spawns some nostalgia in some of us who have been anime fans. But this is a R+ rated story and a reason for that. There's bodies being torn opened, blood spilled, and showing what our heroes do best: delivering justice (even if it comes at a cost).
The sound is just "meh" in my opinion. It does contain drama and conveys the dark mood of the story but not something too noticeable. I do admit that the OP song, "dots and lines" by You Hitoto feat. Mummy-D, is performed well and give us a more suburban type of feeling. With the word "Zet" being mentioned several times, the songs brings out the dark hero out of the characters.
Well, it is also not surprising that Masakazu Katsura was involved with the work of this series. He is Batman's biggest fan and we all know who he is. (at least I hope you do). As such, it is one of the possible main influences of his work. In fact, his influences can be even traced to another superheroes series that debuted last year. Maybe, Tiger & Bunny ring a bell?
Overall, I'd say that this series just fits into the "so-so" for the Spring Season. It has entertainment value especially if you're into some fan-service and hardcore action. But if you can't take the violence and sexual content, then just hit that drop button and try something else. This series blends in the idea of a hero at the darkest hour and shows the cruelty of the world. Its approach of the dark hero genre will give you a strange feeling of both justice and also cruelty once you start watching. Yet, the story is blend and too rushed so for those looking for a complex storyline, then that little glimmer of hope may be crushed faster than a Player. However, if those aren't your criteria, then this series might be worth a shot. Try coming home from school or work, and watch this on your computer or TV with a nice cup of coffee (or w/e it is that you drink) and get into the OP song (while keeping up with the rhythm) after a tiring Monday. You might smile wishing that there are more heroes like Jin and Kouga to save you from all the tiredness of work/school. Or you might feel sad that there are such enemies of justice in the Zetman world. Yet, we all know one thing.
If I had to summarize Zetman in two words they would be "rushed" and "confused". I don't understand how this didn't seem like a bad idea from the beginning, turning a 20 volume manga into a 13 episode anime, the result of this is a storyline that basically throws characters and plot devices at your face as fast as it kills them or make them disappear, with one of the worst openings I've ever seem and some really bland/undeveloped characters. I can't remember the name of a single character that was present in this show, mainly because they don't leave a lasting impression, or are
just killed off or transformed into some monster before you start liking them.
Otherwise, the show has some very good animation and pretty cool fighting scenes, and I don't dislike many of the character designs neither.
OVERALL RECOMMENDATION: Don't watch this, just go read the manga, that's actually pretty awesome.
What is the true meaning of justice? Is it doing the right thing no matter the situation, or achieving the right result no matter the cost? This is the question that ZETMAN centers around. What may seem like the right thing to do can actually end up not being the case and vice-versa, as shown many times throughout the series. The decisions that one comes to based on their kind of justice will undoubtedly vary from person to person. Thus, ZETMAN attempts to illustrate the effects of various viewpoints on justice within a city that is riddled with evil and crippled by the conflicting mindsets
that its inhabitants carry.
Personally, I found the art to resemble the quality of rough sketches that have been coloured in. The sharp strokes and uneven outlines of the artwork, although I haven't seen it too often in the anime I have watched, didn't really impress me all that much and took a while to get used to, especially when it came to the characters themselves; I still wasn't able to fully appreciate it in the end. But in terms of fitting the anime's atmosphere, I thought this art style was a great choice. I found the roughness of the art actually enhanced my overall experience, even though I didn't really like it.
On one hand, the character development was definitely there. Both the two main protagonists, Jin and Kōga, were easy to understand and empathize with by the series' end. However, a lot of their development had a tendency to feel rushed and/or forced, hurting the solidity of their characters. Although the change in their characters could be explained by the circumstances that they went through, I still felt it wasn't enough to fully justify their development. On the other hand, some of the minor characters lacked development and seemed, at most times, to just be an unimportant part of the story, like an extra in a movie. And when they did play a role, it wasn't easy to connect or relate to them, given the limited amount of information about their character as a whole. The vast amount of characters for a short series also made it hard to keep up with and/or recognize each one. In a nutshell, the presence of a few great characters was offset by a bunch of not-so-great ones.
The highlight of this category is definitely the OP. While it took a while for me to get used to, I thought it was an excellent choice for an anime like ZETMAN. It's extremely catchy and does a good job in pumping the viewer up for the episode. The ED provides something different-a soft and slow song that follows a cliffhanger especially nicely. Aside from that the OST was unmemorable and the voice acting was average.
In a way, the story of ZETMAN depicts the possible outcome of when humans abuse their scientific knowledge for their own pleasure and entertainment. Adding in the conflict between the two protagonists' different views on justice when it comes to dealing with the consequences of the aforementioned outcome and you have an interesting plot. Unfortunately, ZETMAN was unable to fully flesh out the potential of this basis and a lot of the story felt rushed. Accounting for the flow of the story in the manga, the anime, as agreed upon by many, paled in comparison. But that may have been due to the lack of time that the show was given (13 Episodes); maybe a 26-episode run would have greatly improved the overall entertainment value of the story. But as it stands, ZETMAN (the adaptation) ended up failing to build upon the solid foundation built by its predecessor.
When you look at it in a general sense, ZETMAN was a decent anime. It had its good points (lots of action, an interesting premise, and two decent protagonists) but also had its flaws (rushed story and character development). Those who have read the manga will mostly say this adaptation was a complete flop, but by itself, there's no real glaring fault that makes it a complete failure. I'd recommend ZETMAN to anyone who enjoys a good mix of action (violence) and a decent story (nothing too special).
I was suprised by this Anime, Didn't think I'd like it that much.
Zetman is a Seinen. If you like violent stories, full of psychological warfare, Full of Blood, Monsters. You will surely and truly Like Zetman.
The Story was a bit confusing at first, Getting clearer and clearer throughout the Anime. Monsters created by Humans break the law and start killing they're creators. I liked the story.It's a dark anime. Violence everywhere, Blood everywhere, And bunch of psychological mind games happening to the characters. I gave it a 8.
The Art was good. Unique Art which differs from other Animes, Although I did not find it was
the best, But yet good enought. I gave it a 7.
Sound. Some Good OST's, Okay Sound Effects, Good Voice Actors. I gave it a 7.
The Characters, I fell in they're story, Very Psychological for some of them. The Main Characters, are very Likable, I fell in they're world. I really liked the Psychological Warfare of the characters, They're reaction, They're thoughts.
It made me worry about them, Worry about what Will happen to them and such. I gave it a 8.
Enjoyment. Zetman was very enjoyable. Although being very crude and violent, I liked every bit of it. 8, Enought Said.
So the Overall Note is 8. If you Like Seinen's, Violent, Bloody, Psychological Animes. Zetman is clearly for you, You should even give it a shot if you want to try, You won't regret it. A great Anime. I recommend it to anyone. (Mostly 18+ haha.)