What’s with me and shows with dashes in their titles today? Anyway, as one of the few people who actually still enjoys Nobunaga the Fool, I had to watch the
blatant ripoff similar show, Dai-Shogun – Great Revolution. So, here is my first reaction to episode 1 of Dai-Shogun.
We start off in the midst of a build-up to a large battle; some shows would have a calm before the storm, other’s are just bad. With no idea who’s fighting and what it’s about, my passion isn’t sparked. But my appetite for a cool action sequence is never satisfied, so perhaps this scene can deliver in that regard, right? Nope. Some speed-lines later, one side has given up, leaving the audience even more confused as to what’s going on and why they should care. And with the battle for Japan’s future (btw, that’s apparently what that was) over, we move right along to the next scene.
Now people are celebrating, but not our presumed protagonist, a 14-year-old-looking kid with Dragon Ball Z muscles and clothes that are about 10% armour and 100% stupid looking. He’s sitting along looking pensive, but unlike Nobunaga, it doesn’t come off as a complex character mourning the deaths of honorable fools, it just looks like he’s disappointed he didn’t get to kill anything. We also see his friend, who I’m just gonna call Monkey, except unlike Monkey he’s not a layered character who shoulders a burden that demands he be decisive and aggressive, he’s just a punk-rocker wannabe. Did J.C. Staff and A.C.G.T. basically just find all of Space Dandy‘s scrapped character designs then make them look even stupider? Seriously, of the first 9 characters shown, 2 have pompadours and another 2 have mohawks; this isn’t a 19th century Japanese army, it’s a modern American gang.
And right as I worry I’m judging this show too quickly, breasts show up. Sure, there’s a girl attached, but the animators don’t seem to realize that. She’s so stacked that she jiggles while sitting perfectly still. I can’t even make a Nobunaga reference on this one, because compared to this, Jeanne is a triumph of feminism. Oh, and apparently “it’s actually [her] first time, so please be gentle”.
While arguing over tits, characters accidently lets so context slip, and we learn the protagonist’s name is Keiichiro. Apparently this gang is now made up of members from both sides of the battle, and Keiichiro is mad at the ones from the other side for surrendering. The reason they surrendered is because Keiichiro (hereafter referred to as Fairy Godmother, because he’s complete wish fulfillment) is just too damn cool for school. They flat out admit that they were scared of Fairy Godmother, and if they hadn’t surrendered they’d have gotten their asses kicked. Also, apparently Tits was brought in as an offering to the new leaders. Annoyed by the lack of honour or just disappointed he didn’t get to fight stuff, Fairy Godmother crashes through a wall and runs away. For a second I thought I kinda liked him here, but quickly realized that I just hated him significantly less than the rest of the cast of pathetic morons.
We catch up with Fairy Godmother to find him pouting over his small penis. He says he’s annoyed that the land they’ve conquered is too small, but he’s obviously compensating for something. Turns out he’s a whiny little brat who just wants more more more.
After some exposition about why there are mechs in the show that may as well just be “Because Nobunaga had them” or “Because shut up! This is my show and I can put mechs in it whether they contribute to the story or not!”, and an opening sequence that promises me a wolf-girl (I’m holding you to that one, Shogun!), we meet a liar claiming he’s not a virgin. I’d say I don’t believe him, but “belief implies a level of giving a crap I am never going to achieve.” (-House Season 8, aka one of the thousands of things I’d rather be watching right now). The person he’s talking to, who appears to be a woman, doesn’t believe him and proceeds to either kill him, cut off his penis or both. Finally, a character I like.
Five and a half minutes in, the episode gets a title, Succession Strife, Keiichiro Appears. It’s a stupid title, since nobody seems to be experiencing any strife right now, and Keiichiro clearly already has some kind of legacy causing others to be intimidated by him, but hey, it’s not like anyone was trying at this point. Oh look, more fanservice! I’ve never understood fanservice where their’s actually some nudity but it’s censored anyway. In the end it just leaves more skin covered than if the person were just wearing clothes in the first place. Anyway, old woman with mop time.
Keiichiro is moping about how he just want there to be more war so he can kill people (why are we supposed to be rooting for the Major from Hellsing?) when his grandma comes along and rightly whacks him over the head. Apparently on top of being warlords, he and Monkey also have chores to do. It seems like his family runs a bathhouse, which makes me even more confused as to who this kid is. He was in the front lines of the battle, afterwards he was being treated like some kind of general or political authority, and now he’s just some kid who works at a bathhouse. Thankfully there’s exposition to clear things up, because it was far too complicated to work organically into the story. The kid is supposed to work at his grandmas bathhouse but he just wants to get into fights. So basically he’s the male lead of a high school romcom.
The not-virgin-man suddenly shows up, being chased by the woman with a knife. She wants to cut his penis off because that’s the only way to make restitution for him showing it to her. Because obviously the best way to get over seeing it is to get right up close to it to cut it off. The number of characters I like is back to zero. Some cops show up (seriously, they’re referred to as “cops”, as is the Japanese tradition) and arrest Fairy Godmother on charges too stupid to be repeated. Once he’s released we finally get a stated goal and presumed premise of the entire show, Fairy Godmother wants to “take over Japan solely by fighting.” He, of course, yells this right outside the police station, like any sensible person would. But he also says he would never kill anybody.
But before any of that, he gets sidetracked with capturing Penis Chopper to prove his own innocence. Never mind the fact that the police let him go and obviously aren’t seriously arresting him, he need to prove his innocence! Putting all their brainpower together, he and Money are able to figure out that she must actually be Tits from earlier, because both were well endowed and wore red Kimonos. These two are like the love children of Sherlock Holmes and L! And it doesn’t matter that the two had different hair and eye colours, she’s obviously a master of disguise who just forgot to change clothes between whoring herself out and attempting to kill a man.
Meanwhile, the police are seriously considering the possibility of Fairy Godmother being the criminal. This is just terrible writing. At the time they arrested him, they were obviously just pinning the crime on him as an excuse because they don’t like him. To have them fall for their own lie makes absolutely no sense. High School of the Dead had a better plot than this pile of crap.
Anyway, Monkey and Fairy Godmother’s search for Penis Chopper/ Tits has lead them to peeping in on a bathhouse, because of course it has. She notices their peephole and is quickly dressed and outside with them. She learns that Keiichiro was raised by Old Woman with Mop, before knocking him out and escaping.
When Keiichiro comes to, the police are back and apparently now their ready to execute him despite having no new evidence of any crime. I guess they let him go before to give him a 10 second head start. But wait, Old Woman with Mop comes to the rescue and blackmails the police chief with at least two other officers watching, and that somehow gets them to drop all charges. Grand Theft Auto has a more effective police force than this place.
By the next morning Penis Chopper’s killed another person (we know it was here because they guy was stabbed, and apparently she’s the only person capable of stabbing. It’s odd that they didn’t just go by her more obvious calling card, you know, the penis thing) and Keiichiro is blamed for it before he was at the scene when the police arrived. Why he was the first one there and how the cops found out about it are never explained. He sees Penis Chopper outside and chases her into the woods, where she strips off her kimono and is suddenly wearing more clothes. Parts that were moments ago visible are no covered by a dark plugsuit thanks the the logic of what sane people call “bullshit”.
In a crazy plot twist, the real Penis Chopper shows up, and it turns out that the woman in the plugsuit is actually… someone else. Real Penis Chopper gets in a giant mech, and the police, who are suddenly competent, show up in smaller mechs to fight her.OI
Plug Suit Woman bring Keiichiro back to the bathhouse to avoiding having to animate the fight, where she explains that she’s actually a ninja named Kiriko who has been sent to protect him. There’s some kind of conspiracy going on, and Edo is under siege, and somehow Keiichiro is important in all of it. Grandma shows up to confirm what Kiriko said, because she’s also a ninja! She hints at Keiichiro having an unusual birth because the hero-archetype is a great shortcut for writing an actual character, and he’s also a virgin which is important for a prophesy or some crap like that.
His own giant mech (named Sunanoo) come out of the ground, uprooting homes and lives but it’s okay because we’re supposed to like this one. One punch is thrown before the fight, and the episode, are done.
Also, incase anyone reading this still thinks they might be willing to watch Dai-Shogun if the animation is good, it’s not. It’s terrible; everything here is terrible. This show isn’t what it looks like -a Nobunaga rip-off which is bound to be stupid be cool- it’s uniquely and originally horrible. It’s the kind of thing you know has always been pitched to anime producers by idiots and 14 year olds, but you never thought would actually get made. It’s shameless, it’s cheap, it’s poorly written; it might just be the worst anime ever made. Don’t watch this crap.
Don’t Lose Your Way