This series of reviews will focus on anime which although they were never masterpiece lever, they still retain lots of quality in their own special way. I will start with this one, which although has the name “emperor” in the title, it is not that great of a show.
VALUE SECTION: 4/10
Although it appears quite silly in our days, the Jungle Emperor was the first color anime series ever made. Made by the man who created the anime morphology, the God of Manga Osamu Tezuka, this title paved the way of the anime industry. It has a high historical value for being one of the first anime ever made and for being a sweet memory for the older otakus. Aside from that though, it doesn’t have much replay value and it is not memorable in any particular way.
ART & SOUND SECTION: 5/10
They will be unbearable if you haven’t been raised with old titles. But they were a technological miracle at the time they were made. They are full of cute animals, a strong depiction of emotions and a high esteem for justice and friendship, dressed nicely with smart camera angles and colors that focus the viewer’s eyes were they should be paying attention. Osamu founded these techniques and they were brand new and downright attractive back in those times.
By today’s standards for most people it will be something to laugh at, as the animation fluidity is terrible and all those innocent eyes staring upwards with respect gets irritating pretty fast. The entire cheery atmosphere feels out of place in our era of emos and anti-heroes. Younger otakus would rate them with a 4 or a 3.
Just remember that the animation was done by hand, frame after frame. There were no stereo or computer-generated 3D graphics and sound effects back then, so the work they put into making this series in a time when anime were just an unknown form of entertainment, was amazing. So, it gets an aesthetic increase in the marks just for that. Just remember Disney’s Snow White and you may understand why old graphics and sound are still nice to listen to.
STORY & CHARACTER SECTION: 3/10
Well, there is nothing much to say. A little white lion is protecting the jungle, helps his friends and learns from the wisdom of his elders. Being shallow even for a children’s story, the series is good only for promoting moral messages to its audience. Besides that, it’s just episodic stories, without much character or story development. The animals are either good or bad and none of them has a strong presence.
I’m not going to try to give an aesthetic increase in the marks in this one. There were fine stories being made in the 60’s and I ‘m generally not fond of simple, too-goody characters.
ENJOYMENT SECTION: 4/10
Definitely surpassed by a myriad other anime titles, both in characters and general concept. I don’t suggest this to anyone younger than 25.
Older otakus and anime collectors on the other hand will appreciate its simple format and its artistically, emotional dressing.
I regret to inform you that the patient has left us. But worry not, as his ideals keep living inside his descendants.
If you like series with animals in a jungle, there is the much newer Jungle Book: Shounen Mowgli.
Disney has reused the same idea and made The Lion King.