What’s up Steemians, I am back with another Anime flashback to recall one of my favourite shows from way back when. I have really fond memories of this one so I hope everyone gives it a shot.
When I was growing up and heading to school I discovered late night Anime showings on the television. Way past watershed, Dragon Ball Z, Beyblade and a bunch of other ‘softer’ shows were replaced with some of the grittier Anime. One such show was Outlaw Star. With no clue as to what this was about, I simply saw a ‘coming up next’ snip with some pretty cool visuals of space ships and shooting. That was enough to get me involved so I decided to stay up late that night. Most of the shows on this network were English dubbed and I had got used to hearing revised openings. Some of these were quite comical and awful really. One Piece’s rap opening was probably one of the most cringe of them all. I could never complain about the Dragon Ball openings though ;)
Outlaw Star was being broadcasted in dub but its opening left vanilla. To this very day I remember the OP vividly. It’s fluid and the music just kicks ass. Here, watch it:
As with most Anime, the show is based off by the manga created by Takehiko Ito and explores space travel, pirates and intergalactic war. Being introduced to badass that is Gene Starwind and his kid partner Jim Hawking (who reminded me of Ken Masters) the opening episode goes off with a literal bang. The whole outlaw, anarchy and group forming on a journey is truly epic stuff. It was interesting to see how technology was being harnessed for the greater good of mankind and abused for combat by others. The next time you see some robot with grappling arms, think twice. And if you see NASA testing grappling arms you know what’s up.
There are themes of Chinese culture carried throughout the story and a number of magical incantations that draw from Taosim. A number of villains are encountered throughout the voyage on the Galactic Layline. For the most part they can be identified as space pirates with some sinister agenda.
The story progresses with a number of side plots appearing throughout. These were very enjoyable and gave some of the more unique characteristics I remember Outlaw Star for. While most of the main cast remain female, the show manages to veer away from the usual Harem cliché and it was great to meet each member as they joined Gene and Jim on their journey.
One other interesting fact that I wasn’t aware of until recently, highly rated TV show – Firefly is heavily based on Outlaw Star! It draws a number of inspirations and even lifts some scenes directly from the anime. This is a testament in itself as the story can be retold yet again, standing the test of time. I feel Outlaw Star has aged well in this regard and recent remasters/bluray releases have been executed very well.
So if you’re into Space Pirates, a badass cast and space grappling spaceships – Outlaw Star is an outing you won’t regret starting. If you’re Bebop fan you might something here for you here too ;)
And to sign off, one of the endings: