Hazama Masayoshi is a successful model who's been enamored with righteous masked heroes since he was a child - so much that as an adult, he’s decided to become Samurai Flamenco: the masked hero of justice! But much to his dismay, the job isn’t as easy as it seems and during his first night as Samurai Flamenco, the man is knocked out and saved by police officer Hidenori Goto. Swearing to keep his secret, Hidenori quickly becomes Hazama’s friend and partner on the job, but soon the pair find themselves in a sticky situation. Not only is the media determined to discover Samurai Flamenco’s true identity, his actions also trigger copycats, flooding the city with other masked heroes!
NOT WHAT IT SEEMS TO BE The biggest mistake one will do when beginning to watch this show, is not being prepared about what it actually is all about. The premise is misleading, and the initial episodes are not representing the mood of the show. If you have no idea what the twist is going to be like later on, chances are you will hate it. I make it sound like in order to enjoy it, you need to be spoiled about things that are not supposed to be spoiled, but trust me, it will spare you the rage and disappointment so many felt while it was still airing. Not getting what you expect out of a show works positively only when you get more than what you expected. In the case of this anime, you get less. So get ready, here comes the spoiler, it’s for your own good. Samurai Flamenco is not a subversion of superhero stories. It is a light comedy that makes it seem it is a subversion, before eventually embracing the dumb idealism of the superhero formula and heads for some really silly shenanigans. It doesn’t sound like a big thing, but it is. REALISTIC BEGINNING When the anime begins, you are made to think it will be one of those stories where the protagonist wants to be hero, starts from the bottom, and gradually moves to bigger challenges. The setting is like our own world, there are no superpowers, no monsters, no giant robots. The gadgets he uses are created out of simple things you can find in your home. The enemies he faces are mundane criminals. And since he is not even that strong, or an expert in martial arts, he makes lots of mistakes. A typical street thug can kick his ass. Tv channels are all after him so they can make a spectacle out of the whole thing. The police treat him as an embarrassing, troublemaking clown. Everything feels exactly how it would be like if an average guy wears a mask and spandex and runs in the streets pretending to be a defender of justice, and preaching to people how to behave properly. It will look stupid, not cool, and will have lots of real life repercussions you don’t see in comic books. If the anime remained like this throughout its run, it would not be exciting but it would definitely be special. SUPERNATURAL FOLLOW UP But since I spoiled it for you earlier, you know that this did not happen. Eventually Samurai Flamenco jumps genres, adds supernatural elements, and gradually becomes a typical superhero flick suffering from jarring tone shifts and overbearing power creep. And the reason all these supernatural things appeared out of nowhere in a setting that did not have them up until then is (get ready for this, it will blow your mind) because God said so. That’s the big revelation which explains everything! It doesn’t sound like a big thing, but it is. IN DENIAL The anime doesn’t prepare you for this, it honestly wants to make you think it will remain basic and pragmatic all the way. Here we are enjoying mundane situations and accepting the show for what it is and suddenly BOOM a talking gorilla with a guillotine in its belly appears, followed by an evil organization of monsters who want to take over the world. Most viewers couldn’t believe this was happening for real. There is no way these Power Ranger shenanigans can happen in such a show. It has to be an elaborate prank with special effects; or a dream, any moment now the protagonist will wake up and everything will be normal again. And since I already spoiled it, you know that this never happened. It became ridiculous and many dropped it after a few episodes because it wasn’t what the show promised them to be. It betrayed them! CANCEROUS THEMES Not everyone dropped it though; many still accepted what it had become and kept watching it… only to encounter some very cancerous themes. At first they tried to excuse it as if the show HAD to turn supernatural, because it was already losing steam from all its simplicity. It tried to spice things up somehow and the best thing it could think of was a literal deus ex machina. I already mentioned how God made stuff happen but I didn’t tell you yet why his almightiness did that in the first place. Well, it’s because the protagonist wanted it! He was fulfilling his wish to have adventures as the ones in the silly comic books he loved so much, and him becoming a superhero who saves the world. It sounds innocent on paper until you realize that because of this wish, countless people suffered for it. I mean, really, so many died or were injured because of all the crazy stuff that kept happening. The source of all this evil was not some demon or alien. It was God and the protagonist who brought them into existence out of a childish whim! That’s just mean and horrible. NOT EXCITING Not to mention unexciting since God can do anything he likes and thus all conflicts no longer feel threatening. Yeah, you are not supposed to know that until the end of the series but remember that I am sparing you the rage and disappointment by telling you about it right away. You know the protagonist will win no matter what happens. Which ironically makes an alien invasion less exciting than a single street thug, back when there was nothing supernatural in the setting and plot armor was not an option. THE REST As for presentation, it looks ok in terms of animation and coloring, although none of the character designs are standing out. The males have a feminine feel to them, as expected from Noitamina series, and have very basic personalities. I can’t say I like any of them; I can forgive the generic protagonist for his naïve ideals, but not the pop idol girls who out of nowhere wanted to be superheroes too just for the heck of it. I mean, come on, they are just frail little girls, why do they beat up so many muscular men with simple tasers? And did we really need the yuri stuff? It was still supposed to be a normal series up until then. You also know your cast is forgettable when most of the audience was concerned with who was the secret girlfriend of one of the guys. Yeah, talk about being afraid of monsters that are trashing cities if you are wondering about those sorts of things. IN CONCLUSION I would have given Samurai Flamenco and average score if it remained a plain anime about a normal guy pretending to be Superman. It could also have ended as a 1 cour mediocre parody of power rangers most would remember as a nice filler anime between better things. But nope, the show decided to head for 2 cour and the only way it could think of for not becoming boring, was to keep throwing in more and more absurd things, as means to keep the audience guessing what could possibly be causing all those supernatural stuff in a typical world. And turns out it was God. There you go, have another Gorillatine. Now go play Batman with those lesbian pop idols.
How many plot twists can one anime have? -_-' There are so many things I can say about this ... so very many things... Samurai Flamenco starts off as a simply awesome anime. The first arc was incredibly entertaining and leaves you with the feeling that this is going to be a fantastic anime ... and then you hit its first plot twist ... I sat there dumbfounded. I-I didn't know what the freck had just happened! Then the second one happened and I just gaped at my computer unable to comprehend wtf was going on! By the third ... well, let's just say I wasn't surprised anymore... -_-" You simply cannot take this show seriously! If you do, you're in for major disappointment! Despite the craziness I was still somehow able to make it through the entire anime, and I still found it absurdly entertaining. Samurai Flamenco is kind of like a train wreck. I simply couldn't look away... The animation wasn't bad, nor was the soundtrack ... the characters, on the other hand, were one big giant bag of crazy! Hell, the only one you think is sane turns out to be one of the craziest! (sad, but unfortunately true). And the plot ... sweet baby jesus, the plot! It was like they crammed every corny superhero cliche into 22 episodes and then went "Awwwesommme!" ... no, just NO! *shakes head sadly* I suspected for the longest time the staff and crew were either extraordinarily high while they were making this anime ... or extremely drunk! And honestly that may very well be their secret. I still cannot even begin to fathom who thought this up! It makes my brain hurt too much, so I'm not even going to try! I will say though that I actually enjoyed the last antagonist. The wrap up though made me yell at the screen... I still don't get why Masayoshi- ehheem- you know what? Watch it. You'll understand why that wrap up made me facepalm and then made me want to bash my head violently against the wall ... -_-' Overall, an absurdly ridiculous anime that you can't take seriously. It has so many plot twists that you'll lose track... It will mess with your head if you even try to take it seriously. If you give it a go ... I say good luck! I hope you come out of it with your sanity still intact ... (I question my own -_-").
The style and animation are beautiful, however the story is certainly bizarre. After watching 14 episodes, I feel as though there are 3 noticiable arcs. First, an introduction to our main characters and the birth of Samuri Flamenco. I enjoyed this, and this is why I continued watching the anime. Second, we have the appearance of Flamenco girl and the story starts to feel more far-fetched than before as she goes around physically assaulting criminals and using dangerous weapons. Then it seems to turn into something similar to Power Rangers. I am not a fan of The Power Rangers, and didn't want to watch something along those lines, but the beginning of the anime seemed more of a paraody so I enjoyed the first few episodes. I think if you're into the bizarre plot twists and Power Rangers, you will probably enjoy this anime.
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