The Hiatus Leadup Week 6- Space Pirate Captain Harlock & City Hunter: Shinjuku Private Eyes


Big Cheese
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Sep 8, 2006
Just a few weeks until Adventure: is back and the leadup will be done again...

With a couple weeks of older films with Little Nemo and Project A-ko, decided to do a double feature of newer movies, that kind of fit in with the currently delayed Kizuna a bit...

Space Pirate Captain Harlock & City Hunter: Shinjuku Private Eyes

General warnings for violence and fanservice.

The movies can be watched on the following officially:
Space Pirate Caption Harlock subbed on Tubi & dubbed in Vudu's free section
City Hunter: Shinjuku Private Eyes subbed and dubbed on Crunchyroll

General disclosure that the version of City Hunter on CR is one that I worked on. It's currently available to nab on Blu-ray if you want (affiliate link): City Hunter: Shinjuku Private Eyes on Blu-ray

This time is a double feature like we did with the video game adaptions awhile back!

Digimon Adventure: Last Evolution Kizuna has currently been delayed in the west, so looking at a few things that aren't quite far off from it seemed worth it. Last Evolution is the first proper full theatrical film for the franchise in Japan (tri. being lower budget OVAs with a theatrical release, and all the prior movies having been part of animation festivals, or in the case of Savers, a short attached to another film.) So with a bigger budget, needed to appeal to old fans, and hopefully catch a few new fans if you can, especially when as far as many people are concerned, the franchise and the characters may haven't been visible in a long time, if they ever really knew about it in the first place, what do you end up coming up with?

Space Pirate Captain Harlock (which has had a number of different titles variations based on region, so sticking with the full one, even though the English title that stuck was Harlock: Space Pirate), is a full high budget CGI reboot of the adventures of Captain Harlock, Leiji Matsumoto's popular space pirate who fits into the characterization of the old style stoic hero. The film goes with a hard science fiction edge, and was meant to introduce Harlock to a new generation. I actually like the film, despite many flaws and often feeling horribly formulaic (with a number of twists both good and bad.) It's a CGI anime production that was able to stay away from some of the more stilted animation that still shows up commonly now.

City Hunter: Shinjuku Private Eyes takes the opposite path. It takes the characters and world from where they were, and plops them into the modern world, and is able to feel like it always belonged, even as the film itself likes to wryly nod that such a thing only works in fiction. Designs and elements have been tightened up for the first new City Hunter animation in a long time, with the designs skewing a bit more classic than they did in some later franchise material. While elements from later City Hunter material is referenced, the film itself does an excellent job reintroducing the characters (with at least one major continuity change that based on interviews had to be approved by the original creator, changing an old wink and a nod into something more relevant, bringing in characters from another franchise he made.) The movie even gets in on the fun with an end credits scene that has something fun in it for those paying attention.

Both movies do an interesting job reintroducing classic characters. Harlock arguably tried much harder and was more ambitious in trying to do something that would reintroduce him to modern audiences, while City Hunter aimed more at making fans happy to see City Hunter return. City Hunter hit a grand slam, and Harlock feels like it didn't, while you also have to wonder if distribution goes wider digitally down the line, if it might be rediscovered as any number of things have.

As for Digimon connections... there are no noticeable connections for the English side, but some interesting on the Japanese side, but we are just listing a few for each:
Space Pirate Captain Harlock
Toshiyuki Morikawa plays Isola in Harlock. In Digimon he played a number of characters in 02 including BelialVamdemon, Devimon, Mummymon, Sora's dad, and Oikawa.
Shinji Aramaki, well known as a character/mech designer, and director, directed Harlock. He did CG design in Digimon Tamers.

City Hunter: Shinjuku Private Eyes
Yoichi Kato wrote the script for Shinjuku Private Eyes. For Appmon he was the series composer and wrote 11 episodes.
Chika Sakamoto plays Ai, one of the members of Cats Eye. For Digimon, she is of course, Agumon throughout the franchise, and Shoutmon in Xros Wars.
It's also worth noting a number of animators from throughout Digimon's history did key animation and other important animation work on the film.

I've embedded the trailers for both as a preview:

Feel free to post as you wish in this thread. You can post as you are watching, episode by episode, when you finish. Whatever you want. Try and give it a couple days for later spoilers so people have time to try and view stuff without spoilers, while still interacting in the thread (especially if you decide to keep watching past the episode listed as the last one for the leadup.) If you watch one episode and it isn't for you, pop in to explain why. Have fun with it!

A new show/movie will go up each Sunday night (or early on Monday), but feel free to keep talking about older shows in their threads, or even watching past the listed episode.

If you want to chat in the Discord you can.

Hopefully you enjoy. Feel free to make any suggestions or ask an questions regarding the threads or the shows also.

Week 1- NG Knight Lamune & 40
Week 2- Street Fighter 2 the Animated Movie
Week 3- City Hunter
Week 4- Little Nemo
Week 5- Project A-ko

Prior Leadups
Second Leadup, To Kizuna (and Adventure:)

First Leadup, To tri.
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Aug 11, 2009
Watched them both, City Hunter on Wednesday, and Captain Harlock last night.

I watched City Hunter first, while the first 13 episodes of the original show were still freshest in my mind, and partly because it was a little shorter. From what I could tell, the characters were pretty much the same, Ryo not having, in Kaori's words, "gotten with the times." It did feel a little weird to me, watching the movie without having finished the show, so that at least one character (Umibozu's partner) was completely new to me. The end credits had a few spoilers in them for the old show. But the movie was rather enjoyable. Amusing, with cool action scenes. I don't have much else to say, not being able to comment on elements touching on subjects outside those 13 episodes I watched the other week.

Last night was my first real exposure to Captain Harlock. I knew that there was an anime by that name, starring a space pirate with a scarred-up face (who was a partial inspiration for CaptainHookmon), but that was literally the sum of my knowledge about it. Naturally, I can't make any comparisons between the movie and the original series. Judging the movie on its own merits, I rather liked it. Even gave me chills in a few places, and it's one of the best-looking examples of CG anime I've seen. There were a couple things I had to roll my eyes at ("And now, with absolutely no context, here's a woman showering!") or shrug about, but my biggest gripe was not with the movie itself but with the subtitles. I had forgotten going in that it would be another case of one set of subtitles for both the English and Japanese versions, so that was a bit of an annoyance (took me a while to catch the main character's real name), especially in moments where I could tell the subtitles were inaccurate but couldn't be sure of the spoken line's exact meaning. Anyway, I'm tempted now to watch the old Harlock anime, since it has such a great reputation and I know so little about it.