Rescue Me, Rightstuf!

hisui_icon_4040 The phoenix has risen from the ashes that was Bandai Entertainment! When the U.S. release of Turn A Gundam was canceled in January of 2012 it was SO CLOSE to coming out that you could practically reach out a hold the disks in your hands. They even had trailers for the show and I have heard stories that people had gotten review copies. But then Bandai Entertainment closed up shop in the US. It seemed like Turn A Gundam was doomed to be one of the few Gundam series that was not officially released in English. I have to say that was a sad scenario as Turn A is not only my favorite Gundam series but also one of my favorite anime in general.

But that is no longer the case. You can order Turn A Gundam from the RightStuf on DVD. Best of all it is coming out for a reasonable price to boot. (Side Note: If you are complaining that Turn A Gundam is not on Blu-ray and are going to throw a fit on the Internet because of that then you’re not allowed to be part of my law firm.)

But this is not (just) a commercial for the DVD release. This title being pulled from the fire reminded me that there are several other titles I would love to see put back into print. They might have gotten a decent run in English at one point in time but these shows either were never finished or have become rather rare since they were released. These are all titles I would love to see the Right Stuf or a similar anime distributor pick up.

All these titles are series that we enjoy so while there might be one or two series that would do smarter to pick up they are not going to be on this list. This is a list of love and not one of accounting. Also the series had to have some sort of release in the United States. We would all like to officially watch Legend of the Galactic Heroes but it cannot be on this list.

narutaki_icon_4040 I pretty much get excited when ever NIS, Discotek, or Right Stuf have an anime announcement to make. Not everything is to my taste, how could it be, but all these companies still put a smile on my face. Right Stuf is kind of like if Discotek and NIS had a baby. Right Stuf tends to release older or smaller titles but with nice packaging and extras.

With Right Stuf’s team-up with Bandai, it got us thinking of what we’d like to see rescued from the backcatalog elsewhere. There is plenty of nostalgia on this list, but we’ve tried to be fair!

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Anime & Manga of the Month: September

Anime of the Month
They Were 11 by Kitty Film

This a short (running just 91 minutes), perfect little self-contained space opera. While it was made in the 80’s it is adapted from a manga made in the 70’s and the character designs reflect that. Ten cadets are sent off on their final test of survival, which happens to be on an abandoned space ship, but when they board the ship there are 11 people in the group. Since the test is randomized no one has a clue as to who is the odd man out. Suspicion, sabotage, and mystery ensue as the cadets form factions and cope with a decomposing ship, rising temperatures, and a fatal disease that is spreading among the crew. They can end the test with a push of a button but then they all fail. All manner of species and personalities clash in this small group, which makes it a pleasure to watch it play out and almost impossible to figure out who the 11th man is.

Manga of the Month
Excel Saga by Koushi Rikudou

While Excel Saga the anime had it’s time in the sun, most people ignore the excellent manga it was based on which is a shame because while I love the anime, I love the manga even more. Where as the anime was a high energy gag a second parody of anime, the manga is a little more subtle with social satire mixed in with its parody of anime tropes. Also I really think Elgala is cute and she’s only in the manga.

Excel, Hyatt, and eventually Elgala are soldiers and agents for ACROSS, an organization bent on world domination. Ilpalazzo, the leader of ACROSS, has determined that he must first take over F city before he can take over the rest of the world. And so Excel spends most of her time going on bizarre missions in hopes of taking over the city and then the world. Ilpalazzo’s old nemesis, Dr. Kabapu, has organized the Department of City Security with his own agents to stop the plans of ACROSS. Technically both organizations are hunting each other but most of the time they are so incompetent that they spend more time fixing their own mistakes, dilemmas, and financial problems than fighting one another.

I must make note that the Viz translation is done my the famous Carl Gustav Horn so they are expertly translated and researched with amazing translation notes at the end. I think learn a little sometime every time I read a new book of Excel Saga. Sometimes the translation notes are as amusing as the comic itself. And that is high praise indeed.