"Fake" roams around the troubled relationship of two American cops while solving a complicated case.
As great fan of the manga I held up my expectations for this OVA. This anime adaptation of "Fake" focus on the Act 5 of the Manga, published on the second volum which, by itself, reduces very much the potential of the story. The flashback trick of the manga is explored here, but it was still disappointing not to see more.
The manga story holds many detailed complexities, that were basically left out in the anime. However, it's still a great action and mystery tale.
The characters were prefectly characterized: many hints
and a lovely flashback are presented for us to know what is going on between them. However, for those that have not read the manga, a mistery remains: who the hell are Bikky and Chal and what are they doing there?
Special kudos for the voice actors, a great cast that worked their job perfectly. Only Dee's voice seemed "not quite right", but after some minutes I got used to it and now I can't imagine him differently.
This is very enjoyable, much more for the adventure and mystery than for the BL (which, being near to none and not explicit at all, is well done and realistic).
I watched this simply because it was mentioned by a youtuber talking about the dynamics of gay relationships in anime. As someone fairly new to yaoi in general, I became interested and decided to watch since I was told that while this is an OVA, it's pretty much a stand-alone in and of itself. I have not read the manga, so that might influence my judgement, though I will try to make this as unbiased as possible.
First off, the story: I'm going to be straight up-- other than about five-ten minutes in between, there's really no romance. And the romance that is shown is
mostly just some kissing, and once it nearly escalates before being interrupted. So if you're here for the shipping aspect, this really isn't for you! On the other hand, for people who prefer a different type of story, there is a murder mystery going on in the background. Personally, while I'm a really big crime and horror fan myself, I found this unsatisfactory-- it was very, very painfully predictable, and in many spots it really did make sense. I won't go into detail here because I don't want to spoil it for anyone, but it was disappointing as a mystery overall since I was able to figure out pretty much the entire way the story would play out in the first ten minutes-- it was ridiculously simple.
I don't really watch old anime all that often, but I have seen a few (mainly Ai No Kusabi from 1992-1994 and Hunter x Hunter from 1998 and 1999-2001) and both have a cleaner art style that leads me to believe more effort could have been made. The art isn't necessarily BAD, but at times it seems sloppy. However, I was very happy with the more realistic body types-- most of the time in 'gay' anime, the seme tends to have a massive, hulking structure with gargantuan shoulders, while the uke is more of a tiny little feminine dwarf. I'm glad that both of our leads looked like... well, men. Normalish men. That being said, I didn't really like how the eyes were designed on most of the characters, but that can be easily overlooked.
The background music and songs of this OVA weren't bad, but completely forgettable. All of it really lacked the fire to make a real impression, so I really didn't care for them. As for the voice actors, I watched a dub, where they did mostly a good job, other than some parts were they sounded rather flat.
I think the main thing that saved this OVA from being completely terrible was the characters. While I didn't really like the way some of the characters were structured and the things they were saying (there were too many stereotypes, including the 'I'M NOT GAY! guy who just kissed a guy and admitted to having feelings for a guy' guy, the 'let's rape this person just because they totally gave me consent though they are currently struggling as I try to get close to them' guy, and the 'totally nice old person who really isn't as nice as they look' guy). On top of that, some of the dialogues were unnatural because... well, people don't really talk like that... Regardless of all that, however, I found the chemistry between the characters to be endearing, even if some of the slightly racist and homophobic comments haven't really aged all that well.
Overall, this wasn't too bad, but not really what I expected.
I would recommend this if you: like murder mysteries, like simpler murder mysteries, like (just hints) of romance in your anime
I would NOT recommend this if you: are here for the romance/yaoi, like more complex mysteries, don't like cliche/predictable plots, are really touchy about slightly assaulty behavior (think classic seme forcing themselves on someone clearly saying no but then the entire situation being treated like a joke...)
I prefer the manga. The drawing in the anime isn't that good, and I wasn't impressed with the voice-work, either. The plot is the same familiar one as in the manga - though with lesser details, of course. A nice watch, sure, but nothing to be impressed about. (Then again, I think the manga is brilliant, so it is rather hard to beat that :D)
First off, I'm going to keep this review short as I don't want to waste too much time. Second off, don't get butt hurt just because I don't like it.
As a heterosexual male, obviously this isn't something I would be open to watching or enjoying. So, I went into watching this with a pessimistic approach. Overall, I rated it a 4 (Decent), which it wasn't. It was utter garbage, but rating it a 1 is too much imo.
2 Cops solving a case, but the case keeps on getting interrupted with sudden ass pumping. To be fair the story had its mystery and not a half
bad plot line, but the 2 cops kind of ruin that. The cops case is a murder case, but without revealing too much, the case is unrealistic and doesn't really make any sense. So, if you don't like an unrealistic story, then this isn't for you.
When I look at the plot and genre, I guess I can't help but feel like the anime did in right. Obviously I'm not going to enjoy it because of.. reasons. But, if you like that stuff, go ahead and watch it.
Art: This OVA was released in the late 90's, so the art and animation wasn't spot on and to be honest I don't like older art styles, probably because I'm used to newer and cleaner animations. For the time, the animation and art was pretty good, not amazing. But good. It suited the presentation of the plot and the relationship of the characters, but again, compared with modern art and animation, it's not great. so..
Sound: The music in the anime varied from pumped up cop action music, to generic romance music, for obvious reasons. Non of the soundtracks really stood out as being bad or good, so I thought a 5 would be an overall good assessment.
Character: Well, the obvious problem with the characters is that they don't understand their profession. Their job is to capture criminals which could cause problems to society, but instead they see their relationship with each other to be more important than that. They work perfectly for the genre and romance, I guess, but I can't say I felt any sympathy or connection with the characters. The only one character that I didn't mind was Carol, was actually quite an interesting character, but unfortunately looked like she was drawn by a 5 year old. This kind of goes back to the art, but it's obvious that the art has been directed on the men of the show because the girls just look so.. stupid.
Enjoyment: I have pointed things out throughout the review and I think it's pretty obvious that I didn't enjoy it, it's just not something I can sit down and watch normally like everything else, instead my watching experience was cringing and hitting my head on the table wondering why these cops can't do their job properly.
I decided to watch this as a joke and ended up enjoying it so much that I watched it again.
FAKE is old and it looks super old. Some of the... actions of the characters are kind of questionable but... I don't know a gay cop story where the main characters actually kind of have a nice chemistry was refreshing to see even in this day and age.
Also,,, the opening... Oh my God. I've been looking for the full version of it for years and I can't for the life of me find it. It's. A. Banger.
It has that lovely old anime nostalgia, with the bright
colours and over-exaggerated expressions... It was so much fun.
Likes; the opening, the characters, the story (the was actually a story oh my god,) the nostalgia, the english dub
Dislikes; dated tropes, dubious tropes/ actions, the english dub
Seriously, watch the English Dub- it's an experience.
Comedy: among all this chaos and love it is hard to become swooned for almost at each advancement becomes shot down on some basis. Oh the struggle that is love.
Curiosity: Mystery anime come in various of forms. Whether it is complex or straight forward or in other. One can't help but become wrapped in the mystery despite the fact this was time to relax.
Work and pleasure shouldn't mix. An old saying that holds truth. Sadly, how can that work if work constantly infringes on one's couple's free time? To make matters worse they are faced with the spew over
of another country's mess of work. If that wasn't bad enough as far as the 'pleasure' was concerned more and more people became entangled in this affair. So much for a 'straight' affair.
Ending is questionable. For while a path had reached its end some minor questions were raised. Such as ghost or no ghost? Why the transfer? Sure the anime hints at them but it hints at both directions. So, knowing which one is right is debatable. Come to think of it that is quite a fair way to and a mystery show. For not only does it build on the comedy aspect as one fights with friends and or family on who is right but it allows the audience to do some deducing of their own.