As I was watching this, I could have sworn on a stack of pancakes that this was a story by Rumiko Takahashi. The character designs, the slapstick action and improbable set-up, the thematic elements and pacing all scream Takahashi.
But after finishing and digging around online, I was gobsmacked - I can't find her name anywhere on this OVA. It was so obvious to me, I couldn't believe it.
And yet, here we are. Everything about this is basically recycled Ranma 1/2. Swap out the characters from one to the other, change the
setting just slightly, and you could run this thing almost entirely as nothing more than one better-than-average Ranma 1/2 two-parter. It's downright uncanny.
The artwork is decent, as is the animation. The story is over-the-top ridiculous, but that's part of the whole premise in the first place. But really if you want to short-hand this, all I can say is that if you like Takahashi's stuff, this will also be right up your alley.
Very good little, short anime. It is a must see just for the comedy and story line. Despite the title.. the picture and the description don't let it fool you. It's set in the modern era.. for some reason the kid carries around a real sword to school and no one cares. Lots of nudity and a Swiss cheese plot what make up this movie. Add in a horrible translation and dub, i highly suggest least doing subtitles. Despite all this though it turns out amazingly funny. So stupid at parts you have to laugh, reminds me a lot of Ranma 1/2 or DNA^2 type
jokes. Seems more like a series.. and leaves you with a crummy ending but still funny.
Before I start this review, I must say the title to this anime is a bit misleading. I wouldn't say it's about THE Samurai, but it's definitely about A Samurai. It's not the samurai story to end all samurai stories.
In spite of that, this is still quite the fun little OVA. It's stupid, but it has that goofy charm that's hard to say no to.
The story is first and foremost the weakest part of this OVA, so let's get that out of the way. Yes, the story is stupid, but obviously this wasn't intended to be treated as high art or thought-provoking stuff. That
said, are we all going to overlook the fact that Takeshi stabs somebody in the beginning?
Luckily, the quirky characters make up for the lackluster story. Whether it's the modern day samurai lead, the polar opposite twins, the sexually repressed teacher or the pretty boy frenemy who's just as lustful and insane as our lead, there's someone in this cliché stew you're bound to like.
As for the art, it's pretty decent for an older anime. Obviously, if you expect the animation to be Ghibli-level good, you'll be disappointed, but there's nothing downright hideous in this anime's world.
As a plus, I will say that I love all the blink-and-you'll-miss-it sight gags the animators put in.
And since this an 80s OVA, of course there's bare breasts. I'll let you rate the design of the boobs on your own.
I don't have much to say for the music, since most of it isn't that memorable. However, the opening theme is quite the toe-tapper. Don't be surprised if you find yourself humming it afterwards.
Far and away, the enjoyment factor was what gave this anime a surprisingly high score.
This little one punches above its weight. There wasn't a single moment I can really criticize too much. It's consistently entertaining and there are many moments that are funny as hell (Takeshi's training sequence, the field trip, the brief interaction Takeshi has with Kagiri and Akari's parents). It's farcical and it's stupid enough that it works.
All in all, I give this anime 6 heirloom swords out of 10.