8.20.2006

On saying the wrong thing and being misunderstood all in the same breath.

Many moons ago when Steven den Beste was (still) soliciting anime series recommendations, one of the shows I mentioned was Outlaw Star. I said it was similar to Cowboy Bebop. At the time I didn't really think all that much about it, until he came back saying that that was no real recommendation in his eyes.

Now, I'm no big fan of the way they ended Cowboy Bebop. I've only ever been able to watch it once myself (don't let the fact that the DVD's are in Japan with their rightful owner color that statement *ahem*). I obviously needed to be a bit more specific in my comparison of how the shows are similar, as well as how they are different.

When I said that Outlaw Star was similar to Cowboy Bebop, I was referring to the basic premise that humanity has expanded beyond the earth, and on the fringes a bit of the Old West 's lawlessness has resurfaced. Outlaws, bandits, and a bit (ok, maybe not just a bit in Outlaw Star) of piracy have sprung up in the void of space.

That's where the non-trivial similarities end. Just about every space sci-fi has it's own handwaving means of explaining faster than light travel. They all have an episode where the ship is stranded in space with resources running low/out (a phenomenon that ought to have it's own trope).

Outlaw Star does not have a "kick you in the gut" ending. No significant protagonists are killed off. What looks like a McgGuffin turns out to be anything but a McGuffin. It has a couple of hiccups along the way, like placing the fanservice episode right before the final plot arc. But it also has one of my favorite one-line gags.

Dochi? (Which?)

And it's delivered so well.

Anyway, it just pains me to see my poorly worded recommendation become the primary if not sole reason for avoiding a show.

UPDATE: Ok, so it has more to do with the genre than any one particular aspect of the show. I can understand that. I still can't bring myself to pick up my old R/C hobbies. It just happens. I didn't really intend for this to bring up touchy subjects anyway.

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