Jan 4, 2022
“Shinshuu Sudama-hen” is a 4-episode OVA about a vein of gold ore called the “Golden Dragon,” whose location can only be discovered by “joining” (read: having intercourse) with a particular woman who has inherited the blood of the gods. In the beginning, a man is assassinated, but in his dying breath, he tells Kageshichiro, the hero, that his daughter, Kageshichiro’s childhood friend Orie, holds the key to the Golden Dragon. There are fights with lots of ninjas (especially female ninjas), and breasts are shown (and squeezed) repeatedly. Orie gets kidnapped, but the hero and his friends save her and keep her in hiding, at least
for the first part.
Without going into spoilers, sex and rape in particular are used as plot devices in this one, so that should tell you how messed up it is. In addition to Orie, some other women have “spirits” called “sudama” in them, and one can receive these spirits’ powers by having sex with the women, willingly or not, which happens quite often.
In addition to the frequent raping, there is naturally a lot of blood and violence, as characters murder each other in pursuit of the gold. Hardly any of the characters are given background stories, however, so it’s hard to sympathize when they get killed off. They’re just kind of there one minute and dead the next. And sometimes you think they’re dead, but they show up alive in a later scene. And the ending is as anticlimactic and cliche as they come.
As far as technical aspects go, the art and animation are poor. Most of the characters are either downright ugly or unattractive at best. One guy even has a cone-shaped head. There seems to be an obsession here with showing scenes of squeezing breasts, as well as showing people's feet while walking; the latter makes me think they recycled the same basic animation of a person walking and just changed the coloring, etc. to fit each character and scene. There are also too many sounds and scenes of swords unsheathing and clashing, particularly in slow motion, and the frequent flashing gave me a headache. Also, a lot of times, characters speak without their lips moving.
Moving on to sound, the voice acting is not good. Also the music feels out of place — there’s often a harpsichord playing in the background, which doesn’t really fit a show about samurai and ninjas. The music is all instrumental and uninspired. And as mentioned earlier, sound effects for swords clashing and getting unsheathed are used far too often.
Overall, the characters aren't sympathetic or interesting. Plus, the story is hard to follow, and uses sex/rape as a plot device. This OVA feels like a cross between Maryuu Senki and Crying Freeman, and that's not a good thing. Avoid at all costs.
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