"Shindou Ranmaru has just graduated from police academy and assigned to Tokko: Special Mobile Investigation Force. On the day of his graduation, he meets the half-naked girl he has been seeing in his dreams. Her name is Rokujo Sakura and she works for a secret group within Tokki, known as Tokko: Special Public Safety Task Force. Shindou ends up joining Tokko to avenge his parents' death, and solve the mysterious mass murder of residents in his hometown of Machida. Meanwhile, bottomless pits begin appearing around Japan, and mysterious creatures emerge from them. Could these events be linked to Machida Massacre?"
Wow... I must tell you before you read this review that it has been awhile since I watched Tokko.
I really do not think this anime has gotten enough love. It was actually a VERY great anime with a great story. Even though, it made me very upset that they ended it with pretty much... no ending. It was kind of just... over.
This anime... is not for little kids. Very bloody and a lot of swearing, but that was one of the reasons I liked it so much!
STORY: I think that this anime had an amazing story. I mean, sure it's kinda getting old, the whole,
"My family died in this major massacre/accident and only I survived...". But, looking past that, the way Ranmaru deals with it and wants to right the wrongs is very inspiring. This is a story of... killing demons pretty much. But the creators of this anime made it more interesting than that. Because there are so many stories like this one, they had to do something to make it stand out from the rest. I think that the characters make this story. I'll get to that later, though.
ART: It's true... the main reason why people have not watched Tokko is not because the story is not amazing, but it's just because the artwork is not "blow me away" incredible. It's just... decent. The drawings have that kind of rugged look to them, which suits it well for a horror/slasher anime.
SOUND: The OP theme is TO DIE FOR! I totally adore it. It even put it on my I-pod. But don't listen too many times, or it gets stuck in your head forever... mwahaha! Throughout the anime, the sound is just... eh. Not too amazing. They do some cool background music I guess, but nothing that really makes you get into the story.
CHARACTER: This is where I belive Tokko excells. At least, with the main characters. Ranmaru Shindo is probably one of the coolest anime characters ever made in my eyes. He's hot, he's a policeman, and he has special powers that he doesn't even know about. Plus, he's got that traumatic past thing going for him. :) I dig that. It took me a few episodes to start liking the main female character, Sakura. First of all... the name Sakura is so over-used. But looking past that, she really turned out to be a great character and played a very important part in the story. Without her, Ronmaru would not have been as amazing. They were a great pair :) A few of the lesser characters (the male ones) where also great, but I'm not gonna spoil it for you. Sadly, the lesser female characters were semi annoying. Especially Ronmaru's younger sister Saya. But, she was important to the story and she made for some good laughs along the way.
ENJOYMENT: VERY enjoyable anime. I mean, who doesn't like hot men and women running around fighting monsters and cutting them up and swearing all the time? Cause I know that I like that sort of thing. There were some intense and emotional moments. Not very many laughs, but a couple popped out along the way. :)
Please tell people about this anime. It really needs more love. It was incredible!
When you hear the word "anime" what pops into your mind? Do you think of the beautiful movies of Hayao Miyazaki? Do you think of generic shonen series like Dragonball Z, Naruto, or Bleach? Perhaps you think of the artistic and Avant Garde works of Satoshi Kon or Masaaki Yuasa? For someone like me who was born in the late 1980s and grew up in the 1990s watching the anime available on American TV, I first think of highly formulaic action series with clear character archetypes, mediocre animation, and attempts to use pointless gore and nudity to make themselves edgier than the animation of
other countries. Tokko aired on 2 separate channels in the US: Syfy and Chiller. It is the very epitome of mediocrity. It perhaps above all other series I can think of perfectly represents what my generation thought of "anime" at the time.
Plot and characters: 4/10
Spoilers!!! (Not that anyone reading this would care)
Tokko begins with a group of teens fighting demons that attacked them years ago and now those demons wish to finish the job. The teens all have special brands on their bodies that help the demons hunt them down. This plot point was completely stolen from Berserk, but I digress. Our teenage heroes slay the demons with magical swords and many times the action and plot heavily resembles that of Bleach. Although actually Tokko came out the year before Bleach. The demons that are causing trouble in the human world all came through a portal opened by mad alchemists seeking immortality. In order to seal the portal, the powerful 108 demons (Hindu/Buddhist reference) must be defeated and their shards reclaimed. With 108 main enemies to defeat, you would think that this series would drag on for years. Although that was indeed the writer's original intent, the series was dropped after 1 season and ended forever on a complete cliffhanger. A brief Radio Drama came out only in Japan that was supposed to wrap up the plot, but even that didn't work out! The characters are all the exact types you have seen again and again! I have said before that this is one of the most generic anime you will ever see, and I REALLY mean that.
Art and Music: 5/10
The opening "Sunny Day" is very generic J-pop tune representative of the time. The OST is completely forgettable. It isn't bad, but it isn't good either. The animation was considered mediocre then and would probably seem a bit dated to young viewers today. The people on Syfy channel really thought this anime would sell because it had some tits and blood, but no one really paid attention. This anime quickly vanished from the public mind and plunged into the deepest obscurity.
Tokko is not a good show, neither is it a particularly bad show. It is an extremely generic action anime of the late 1990s/early 2000s. It is the exact kind of anime that me and my peers grew up watching on American TV at this time. If any of my fellow "oldtaku" want a blast from the past, they should watch an episode of Tokko and have a laugh. If younger readers of this review want to see what watching anime was like in the old days when all the anime we saw was either on TV or at the local video store, then check out an episode. This was the kind of stuff we watched, because the total quantity of anime available to us was low and the quality was also fairly low. We usually were much less cynical and jaded than today's otaku. We didn't attack series for lack of realism as if everything NEEDED to be a Chekhov play(or Ping Pong). We didn't freak out that visual quality wasn't 1080p. If something didn't absolutely SUCK ASS, like the shit Central Park Media always dumped on us, we were God damn happy! That is why we watched shit like Tokko and were content with it. Before you young ones judge us, try and put yourselves in our shoes and imagine what it was like.
Firstly I'd like to say i read some other reviews and this is a very varied anime. (I have finished this anime before reviewing) It's like marmite / veggie mite lol You love it or hate it.
While watching this I was always wondering what was going to happen next, have seen alot of horrors / slash 'em up movies and anime, I wasn't entirely sure what was going to happen through this. There was various suprising moments through-out the entire anime. The idea of demons trying to kill humans isn't as simple as it goes, that is just the impression you get at the start
but there's a little more to it than that. Alchemists summoned the demons for certain reasons (I'll try not to give anything away to spoil the plot) Anyway theres a few twists and turns there was alot i didn't expect to happen that did. Yes, it could have been better, the ending was a little rapid and maybe it should've been 14 episodes, but this is the reason i don't make 10 out of 10 and only 8. It felt somewhat slightly rushed on the last episode, but I still enjoyed it.
The art was somewhat different to other anime, it could be related to elfen lied in some ways, but in others it's nothing like it. The blood and gore was well drawn as was some of the characters, it was simple in alot of places yet effective but nothing special, so although I really like this anime I will have to mark this as just a 7.
I don't know how anyone can say there was no ambience in this...it was full of it. I guess if you're not enjoying the anime you won't pay attention to little things like this. There wasn't a whole lot of BGM but the OP was nice and the EP was not too bad. Remember this section is about SOUND not just MUSIC though. The sound went well with the series although maybe they could've added a LITTLE bit more music. The sound of death, gore spilling, OP, EP, music in some places, ambience reverb effects, this HAS sound, just not a great deal of music or if there was I didn't notice too much of it. But what i heard was nice...7 out of 10.
I remember reading before about character's having limited emotions. But I think people forget one thing...from what happened in the story the characters was trying to make themself strong I don't think they would show much emotion after having been traumatised from the event that happened. I think people expect too much in certain circumstances instead of thinking about how they would really act in certain situations. I'm giving this a 8 out of 10 because the characters represented themselves well and I really don't think I'd act any different given the same situation, I think it would be hard to show anymore on character development because you had someone who rarely talked, to having convosations because of how someone effected her. If you really take a step back and look at this, theres alot to the majority of the characters.
I may watch this again...I think I probabaly will. It was nice to watch, it was entertaining, blood gore, character development, not to the extent of elfen lied but it was good! 7 out of 10!
Based on the manga of the same name which was written by Tohru Fujisawa and directed by Masashi Abe. Tokko is an action anime that dabbles in the supernatural and Japanese mysticism. It involves a group of supernatural detectives taking on supernatural threats, in this case it's some type of zombie like creatures possessed by demons whom devour the living. Many naysayers hit on the unoriginal feel of the series, yet I can outright ignore just how derivative the story is, because the real problems are stale characters, unnecessary filler, bad story progression, poor interactions, plus a rushed and unfinished ending. This is more than
enough to bury any title 40,000 leagues under the sea.
I honestly do not watch anime for the sake of complaining but there is so much about Tokko to complain about. The characters are a real problem beginning at the top. The main character Ranmaru and his sister Saya have a relationship that can only be described as disturbingly creepy, while the rest are bland stereotypes meant to fill up roles. There's only one character by the name of Chief Kunikida who is funny as hell (English dub), and I doubt he was meant to be the real comedy relief.
The plot follows Ranmaru as he becomes intrigued by these monsters they face and he eventually meets the girl in his dreams, the sword wielding Sakura, and her team equipped to deal with this threat called Tokko. It appears that they are the only one's capable of killing these monsters. He learns a lot about them, plus the main threat which has a whole lot to do with him and the tragedy they all experienced that changed their lives.
Tokko drags its feet revealing smaller parts to the mystery, and the pacing is bad as it jams in more moments of Saya and the weak cast. I found no one in this worth attaching too. Ranmaru is the typical shonen guy that acts as if he's afraid of women, gets in danger, all that good stuff. The characters are so weak and can't carry the plot leaving only its story to try and save things which had plenty of potential. There's another organization to battle the creatures, other warriors of Tokko's type with one couple actually doing something weird to the monsters after they kill them. Unfortunately, a lot of this stuff goes nowhere and it's even more frustrating that the episodes contain more filler than substance. It also does a terrible job at foreshadowing; it's too obvious what's going to happen and who could be working something behind the scenes.
Even the production values are quite mixed; the action department consists of the quick swipes and falling body parts which gets old really quick, yet there are some nice moments of some brutal gore. The bullet holes to the face and eyes looks pretty cool, with monsters being outright obliterated into pieces along with blades through the head. It's a shame that the viewer isn't treated to a lot more of that.
The backgrounds of buildings, trees, and hazy flashbacks make good use of the visuals, yet still character backgrounds and CG background vehicles look awkward. I'll give credit to the creepy monster designs though; those baby-face looking, parasitic maggots, are something that will stick with you. Whenever I think of this anime those sick looking things come to mind. They are definitely the highlight in terms of designs. The J-pop soundtrack is just there, but the series BGM does have its moments where it tries to work with its horror-like atmosphere using static background music which works well in the hazy, choppy like flashbacks and visions.
In the end though, Tokko crumbles underneath everything it wants to do. I saw a professional review once stating that this anime is an unrelenting blood bath, and it's one of the most violent series ever created. Do not buy into this; the violence is pretty average when considering how violent this genre has been for awhile. In addition, it spins its wheels with not much happening until around half way, plus the ending is a serious jip. The only people I can see falling for this are the very easy to please. If you do not fall into that group then I recommend other dark action titles such as Speed Grapher, Basilisk, or Berserk. I agree that Berserk has a jury-rigged ending, but at least everything before the ending is very gripping and leaves a damn good impression. Tokko is simply boring and forgettable.
Highs: Decent production values
Lows: Lots of missed potential, undeveloped story elements, unfinished
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