Poor, short, and unathletic Joey Jones has always been picked on by the rich kids at his school. But when a lightning bolt turns a toy robot he salvaged from the trash into a hulking, remote-controlled bruiser, Joey becomes the only thing standing between humanity and a terrifying race of alien invaders, The Skrugg. If he's going to save the world, however, he's going to need the help of his friends Psy, Lina, and Professor Denton, along with more courage than he ever knew he had.
Story Heroman's story really isn't anything never before seen. In fact, it lines up with most shounen anime. Joey, our hero, is a young boy living in the USA. He gets picked on and bullied and considers himself to be very weak. Well, he comes into a great power when his self-repaired Heybo is struck by lightening, turning it into a giant robot with the American flag running down its side. This is Heroman. Together Joey and Heroman, with the constant support of their friends, are tasked with defending the world from the Skrugg. The Skrugg are an alien lifeform hellbent on destroying the planet. There's really nothing amazing about this story despite Stan Lee's influence in it. But regardless, this anime is somewhat inspiring and it's not the overall story that makes it so wonderfull. It's all of the little stories that are happening behind the scenes. Like the story of Joey and his father. The plot behind Lina's brother was also very good, even though it went a little underplayed. Animation The animation is fantastic. I really liked the character designs and how the world was drawn. The colors were lush and were appropriate for the series. Everything moved fluidly. This anime is gorgeous. The Skrugg were unique and every battle was a sight to behold. Sound I really liked the voice acting in Heroman. I could feel the sincerity in the character's voices and it really drew me closer to the characters. The voice acting in this anime is truly top notch. I also enjoyed the two seperate opening and ending themes as well. Episode one through twelve contained "Roulette" by Tetsuya from L'Arc-En-Ciel and the ending was called "Calling" by Flow. Episodes thirteen through twenty-six contained "Missing" by Kylee and"My Hands For You" by Mass Alert as the ending theme. I especially liked "My Hands For You." Characters I'm very picky with the characters in my animes. If an anime doesn't have believable characters than I'll typically lose interest. I'm happy to report that I loved the characters in Heroman. Joey is such a sincere kid and he truly is a hero. He's such a loveable character the way he tries to help everyone and you can tell he has a soft heart. His relationship with Lina was also enjoyable to watch as the two became closer and closer throughout the series. Psy, Joey's best friend, was always encouraging and never backed away from Joey's side. Professor Denton was an interesting character as well. There was character development for all of the main characters throughout the series, including Heroman! The characters here really make this anime shine Overall This was a great anime and I enjoyed watching it very much. But, then again, I had a feeling I'd like it as I'm a sucker for Stan Lee's creations. This isn't just a child's action anime. There's a lot of character development and although the story isn't anything brilliant its still incredibly entertaining.
STORY: 6/10 Joey Jones is a 90 pound weakling living in Los Angeles Center City in a society where apparently video games never caught on and instead robots are all the rage. He works at a coffee shop, lives with his incredibly unrestrictive grandmother, and gets bullied by the resident jock often (mostly because said jock's sister has a huge thing for Joey). When one of the bullies breaks his new robot and tosses it away, Joey fixes it up in his spare time and gives it the moniker of "Heroman." Shortly after that, Heroman is struck by lightning, causing it to gain consciousness, grow somewhere around nine feet tall, and gain a handful of superpowers (and give Joey a couple as well). All while the alien Skrugg are launching an invasion on Earth. So, yeah, it's pretty plain when it comes to anime plots. It's pretty much what you'd get if you mixed Spider Man with Giant Robo, and tossed in just about any 70s or 80s Super Robot anime into the mix. Still, the writing is fairly solid. It doesn't suffer from having Monster of the Week formats, the setting is lively and it actually goes out of its way to try and have a realistic interpretation of what would happen if a Superhero suddenly showed up out of nowhere. Characters act like actual people, intelligently and maturely, and each one is important in some way. Doing away with normal formats gives Heroman some solid pacing, I think. It's separated into four distinct story arcs, but each one (with the exception of the vine monster arc) is entirely related to everything that's happened in the series up to that point. Keeping everything happening in a short amount of time makes it all the more dramatic. Premise: 0.5/2 (It's been done to death, but having that "Stan" feel gives it a little bump) Pacing: 1/2 (Kept my interest from start to finish, though the first arc is a bit slow and the vine monster arc is kind of filler) Immersion: 2/2 (Everyone acts like they know about comic books! I like it.) Setting: 1/2 (America, fuck yeah!) Theme: 0.5/1 (Themes of Heroism. Rather old, but not bad messages) Complexity: 1/1 (US Government, Joey and crew, Skrugg, and Minami all have their own little plans that interact)ART: 8/10 I must say that Heroman looks really good. I'm surprised more people didn't watch it for the visuals alone. The art style is striking and memorable, something that has this interesting blend of Japanese and American comics/animation to it. While the Skrugg might use some extra variations to their designs, I still think the basic idea is a pretty cool alien design. Though I will admit that some of the characters just look a bit strange juxtaposed next to one another. Seeing Professor Denton, a man who looks almost like a real person, standing next to Psy (or more specifically, Psy's hair) or Dr. Minami can seem odd at times. The backgrounds are well done, I think. They're filled with detail and even the characters have a wide variety of designs. The city fills out and empties to match the time of day, location, and events going on (an example being how the piers at night are bustling with activity). I can't really think of an issue with the animation. It starts out beautiful and keeps it up for pretty much the whole series. If I were to nitpick, I'd say the minor use of stock footage here and there (good stock footage, though) is the only potential problem. Other than that, characters move organically. Different characters have different body language, you can feel the weight behind everything, and the electricity effects that accompany Heroman's fights look absolutely awesome. General Presence: 1.5/2 (Really memorable) Visual Design: 1/2 (Somewhat inconsistent) Backgrounds: 1.5/2 (Mostly just normal locations, but really varied) Animation: 2/2 (Great) Attention to Detail: 1/1 (All over the place) Visual Effects: 1/1 ("Heroooooman, GO!") SOUND: 9/10 Heroman isn't just a treat for the eyes, I'd say it's a veritable feast for the ears as well. I can't say the voice acting is perfect, but I would say that it's pretty good. Ironically, it's not the protagonists that make me say this. The protagonists are all around voiced well but nothing that stands out. I have to give props to Ishizuka Unsho for voicing Kogorr in such a badass fashion, and I'd always look forward to Matsumoto Yasunori's hammy Dr. Minami. The music is all around great. There are many times I'd stop and think about just how awesome the fight scenes' musics was. But it goes beyond fight scenes. Antagonists carry their own leitmotifs that are awesome and threatening; when the series gets fun it knows how to keep the soundtrack energetic and lighthearted; and when it wants you to, the OST can knock you on your ass with its beautiful sad songs. Heroman's one of those series that really makes you want to pick up the soundtrack for a few of your favorite songs, then you realize that the whole thing is awesome. Sound effects are also good. Heroman's punches and the Skrugg's bursting have a unique noise and everything just sounds right. I enjoyed the vocal effects they gave the Skrugg soldiers almost too much, I think. Voice Acting: 3/4 Music: 4/4 Sound Effects: 2/2CHARACTERS: 5/10 The cast of characters is okay, I guess. The main characters kept my interest while they were on-screen, and Joey's a nice kid. Agent Hughes is probably the coolest of the protagonists, though. It's really the antagonists that make the show. Kogorr specifically. But the saving grace of the whole cast is that they live in a world where it seems comic books exist. A problem in lots of superhero stories, in my opinion, is how each character embraces the common tropes of the genre without really knowing why. In Heroman, it's clear that people act not just logically but in a way where they understand how a Superhero story "usually" works. There's not much when it comes to development, aside from Will and a little development for Joey. The main issue here is just that you can get a good handle on who everyone is just by the first episode they appear in. There's nothing wrong with the characters, but they aren't really trying to be the strongest cast. Presence: 1/2 (Not bad, but not the strongest cast either) Personality: 1/2 (Mostly stuff seen before, but there are a few variations such as with Will) Complexity: 0.5/2 (Not much aside from the Genre Savvy - and a little from Holly) Memorability: 1/2 (The characters at least stick out) Development: 0.5/1 (Not that much) Pathos: 1/1 (I really sympathized with the cast) FINAL JUDGMENT : 7/10 Unfortunately, even though I can praise the animation and sound all day I'll still have to admit that the writing isn't great. It's good, just that it isn't really trying to be anything more than a simple Superhero story. Some people like traditional Superhero stories, but if it's not your cup of tea then it might be worthwhile to try and find something with more focus on the writing. Of course, it's not like the writing is bad as much as that it's just okay in general. Though, hey, if you want an anime that's just fun to watch, there's only one thing I'd say here: "Hey, Joey, fill me up!"
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