It's the 1930s, and Mafia groups fight for supremacy in American cities. Young Firo joins the secretive Camorra group; a meek street boy, Jacuzzi, finds himself the leader of a gang of thugs; an alchemist is producing a liquor of immortality, and a homunculus tries to retrieve it; and upbeat thieves Isaac and Miria head to New York after failing to strike gold in California. They ride the novel train, the Flying Pussyfoot, across the continent. However they find themselves embroiled in a ruckus caused by gangs, terrorists, serial killers, and others as multiple stories intertwine and unfold on this fateful ride. All are haunted and hunted by the legendary Rail Tracer...
Secret agent for the British Libraries, Yomiko Readman, has an infatuation with books. When she purchases one of the books that contain the notes for a plan to purge the world of humanity, Yomiko (along with the help of Ms. Deep and Drake) uses her powers of paper manipulation to stop a group of resurrected men from fulfilling the plan.
Both Baccano and Read or Die are short, sweet, ridiculous comedy action series, featuring a layered storyline and jazzy opening numbers. While Read or Die features plenty of anachronisms, Baccano is set in the past. Both also feature a slap of sci-fi or fantasy - Read or Die's variety being far more absurd than Baccano's. Baccano is the more serious of the two - featuring drama and graphic violence - but anyone who enjoyed the sometimes overblown characters will, I think, enjoy their counterparts.
Amidst the turbulent political climate following WWI and the first Sino-Japanese war, the Japanese are taking a rapidly-increasing economic and political interest in the northern Chinese region of Manchuria. Japan and its Kwangtung Army wish to take over the region from China in order to safeguard their interests from the imposing Soviet Union and the spread of communism. The members of the Sakurai Kikan, a special intelligence agency among the ranks of the Kwangtung Army, must overcome film theft, foreign espionage, the spread of Pan- Asianism, and their most testing trial of all - the Manchurian Incident.
Most anime series are set in Japan, which is pretty lame. Senkou no Night Raid and Baccano!, on the other hand, are action series set in 30s-era Manchuria and America respectively, which are especially rare settings for the medium.
Fans of unique atmosphere are sure to enjoy both. Especially Baccano!, as it's far superior.
In a bizarre fantasy world, students known as meisters are trained at the illustrious Shinigami Weapon Meister University; but the tools they wield are no ordinary weapons! Each meister is paired with a human-like being who can transform into a weapon at will; and after defeating a pre-kishin - a human whose soul has darkened - the weapon eats the soul within it. A meister's ultimate goal is to collect ninety-nine pre-kishin souls and one of a witch so that his or her partner will become an all-powerful Death Scythe. Maka and her partner Soul Eater; Assassin Black Star and his partner Demon Blade Tsubaki; and Shinigami's son Death the Kid and his partners the Demon Twin Pistol Thompson Sisters each vie for their ultimate goal, but plenty of challenges and adventures lie in their way!
Ten years have passed since the demise of the bubble economy, a time that polarized the world into two groups of people: the rich and the poor. In the present day, Saiga Tatsumi (a former war photographer) has been hired to investigate a secret club for the rich named the Roppongi Club, but he soon discovers secrets much darker than he’d ever imagined. With the help of a exploited goddess named Kagura, Saiga now possesses the power to kill by simply taking a photograph; but can he stay alive long enough to save her from her captors?
Both anime are dark and show what lies in the underworld that normal people wouldn't generally be aware of. Baccano is slightly faster paced and jumbled where speed grapher actually takes the time to explain things to the viewer. Action packed with some random sprees of violence. Check one out if you liked the other.
In Sternbuild City, corporate logos not only cover billboards, but also the costumes of the super-powered heroes that act as its protectors. Veteran and newcomer warriors of justice alike compete in a reality TV show that offers points for apprehending criminals while giving champions' sponsors a chance to promote their brand. When the low-ranking Wild Tiger loses his backing after a string of outrageous, botched rescues, he finds himself paired with an up-and-coming spotlight-seeker called Barnaby. But with their wildly different personalities, will the pair be able to save their beloved Sternbuild City and win the game show, or will their constant tension be the undoing of the world's first hero team?
Warning: Baccano! is a VERY bloody series, so if violence bothers you, disregard this recommendation! That said, both series feature entertaining characters, great action scenes and a fantastic art style (with a particularly good mix of CGI and traditional animation). Also, a key character in Baccano! is played by Barnaby's seiyuu. I wouldn't say either series leads me to think particularly deep thoughts, but they both get my blood pumping and really entertain me.