10 Anime You’ve Never Heard of But Must See – Otakon 2010

For those attending our panel at Otakon 2010 (and those simply curious), here is the list of titles shown in the order they were presented.

  • 0. [Pre-panel sound check] Brother, Dear Brother
  1. Future Police Urashiman
  2. Blazing Transfer Student – Gainax spoof of shonen action/adventure
  3. Natsuki Crisis – girl’s martial arts OAV that has actual cool fight scenes instead of cheap animation and clothes tearing off
  4. Yatterman (2008) – seen in  Tatsunoko vs Capcom, though Anime Obama is not a hidden character
  5. Flying Phantom Ship – aka Flying Ghost Ship; Dave Merrill has the best writeup at the link provided
  6. Gozenzo-sama Banbanzai – Situation comedy by Mamoru Oshii (Sky Crawlers, Ghost in the Shell, Patlabor, Urusei Yatsura, etc); review coming next episode
  7. Bagi, the Monster of Mighty Nature – on one hand, swordfights on motorcycles! On the other hand, this is one of those Osamu Tezuka works furries cherish…
  8. Queen Millennia the Movie – Leiji Matsumoto done Michael Bay style due to being a condensed retelling of the TV series
  9. Crystal Triangle – probably the most “controversial” pick. Hiroshi Koujina, guest of the convention, was an animator on this. He claims he doesn’t remember it!
  10. Penguin Memories – there are no words; this is probably the only one on the list you’ll probably have a hard time finding online. Check NicoNico or Youtube
  11. Bonus: Sci-Fi Harry – weirdo kid gets bizarre psychic powers that murder people; it’s a TV show but many of the more choice clips from this  would be questionable to show at that hour of the convention

If you attended the panel and enjoyed it, please be sure to post in this thread on the Otakon web boards saying so since otherwise the staff won’t easily get word of it. [Note from Daryl: please don’t post there asking “why doesn’t Daryl have more panels?” It makes me look bad because it makes it seem like I’m telling you to do that, which hurts more than it helps.] If you’ve got direct feedback for the panelists themselves [us], then post a comment here since otherwise WE won’t easily get word of it!

Oh yeah, and if you liked our panel you’ll probably enjoy listening to our podcast, too! Just click on the Review Index or Subscribe to Podcast links to get started (or the “What’s a Podcast?” link if you’re not aware).

20 thoughts on “10 Anime You’ve Never Heard of But Must See – Otakon 2010

  1. Your lack of The Ultimate Teacher disturbs me. [Ultimate Teacher was a strong candidate–got the clips and everything–but in the end we went with Crystal Triangle instead since it related to one of the con guests in attendance. –Daryl]

    Still, I’ve only seen Yatterman and part of an episode of Queen Millennia. I might have seen Crystal Triangle, but it would have been 16 years ago or so.

    Wow Tezuka’s Furry Anime? Got much heckling for that one?

    • Excellent! Consider me less disturbed! Well no, I am pretty disturbed but that has nothing to do with yall. But let’s be honest here, The Ultimate Teacher deserves an entire panel dedicated to it anyway.

      With the kinda’ addition of Brother, Dear Brother (or Oniisama EEEEeeee if you like the way that sounds) I have seen a staggering almost 3 of this list.

    • The clips were shown in this order:

      1. Future Police Urashiman
      2. Blazing Transfer Student
      3. Natsuki Crisis
      4. Yatterman
      5. The Flying Phantom Ship
      6. Gozenzo-sama Banbanzai
      7. Bagi, the Monster of Mighty Nature
      8. Queen Millennia: The Movie
      9. Crystal Triangle
      10. Penguin Memories
      11. (Bonus) Sci-Fi Harry

      The order was not actually in progression of obscurity. The order was mostly by who selected things (as denoted by whomever introduced it or did most of the talking), though Sci-Fi Harry was Gerald’s pick and Crystal Triangle was Clarissa’s. I’ll edit the original post to include the showing order, now that the panel has occurred and we know what we were able to show.

  2. I was disappointed with your list. and it’s not because I’d just seen 1 (Gosenzosama Banbanzai) and only heard of 3 others (Sci-fi Harry, Yatterman, Queen Millennia). But just cause not many of the titles seemed interesting. I mean, I know how good something is is totally subjective, so i figured i wouldn’t totally agree with your titles. But it just seemed like most of them were ironically good obscure 80s OVAs that are only worth watching to laugh at how ridiculous they are. I mean, you guys sat there and laughed at them saying things like “and this isn’t even the most ridiculous part!”.

    Sure I might check out the intended parody, Blazing Transfer Student. And the Penguin Memory one looks worth watching. But the only appeal in most of the others is “lol whats going on this is ridiculous?!”.

    And when the description said “mix of old and new” I assumed it’d actually be a mix, not 1 title from 2008, and the rest from at least a decade ago. And the only “new” title is Yatterman? seriously? that’s your “must see anime”? Everyone watched that Obama/McCain clip on youtube back in ’08… and if it’s “clever referential humor” didn’t get me interested in that kodomo series back then, then i’m not gonna check it out on y’all’s recommendation :\.

    I thought it was gonna be titles like Pale Cocoon, Eternal Family, Ani*Kuri 15, Noiseman Sound Insect, or Cat Soup (Heck, Cat Soup would’ve been a title people could’ve gone down and picked up from the dealers hall). Legitimately good, not as recommended and appreciated titles. But what I got was “lol watch this flying ship it shoots lasers rofl” and “rofl why does an archeologist need to carry a rocket launcher thats ridiculous lol”.

    ps why didn’t you at least show the best part of the first ep of Banbanzai? When the mom dramatically exists through the floor. That scene was awesome.

    • As one of the co-panelists, I thank you for showing up and leaving feedback. Over 500 people were present, and yet we’re barely hearing a peep online as far as reaction. Yours happens to be mostly critical, but I like that. In fact, I hate it when people ask for feedback then get mad because the feedback they get is critical. So even though you weren’t too keen on the panel choices, I thank you for actually being honest and leaving some real criticism. I wish more people would.

      That said, I have to wholly disagree with your assessment of these titles as being “ironically” good. From my perspective, these are all “legitimately good” works of entertainment. The Flying Phantom Ship may not be a candidate for the Noboro Ofuji award, but it’s a fast-paced, well-animated, action-packed story that’s highly entertaining with a tremendous creative pedigree behind it. My other picks featured work by Leiji Matsumoto, Osamu Tezuka, and Mamoru Oshii: these are all heavy hitters of anime with works that have been overshadowed by what they’re commonly remembered for. Crystal Triangle was on there for two reasons: first, it’s outstandingly unforgettable; second, Hiroshi Koujina was a guest at Otakon this year and worked on it. Incidentally, Otakon has hosted Japanese guests who worked on Crystal Triangle in the past, and they noted it had quite the collection of talents. Hideaki Anno worked on that thing too. I speak only for my picks, but these are things that showcased the talents of the heavyweights of the anime industry.

      Your criteria for “good” or “must see” is probably a little different than mine, but I do still understand it (hey, I know what the Ofuji award is, don’t I?). I notice that nearly all of your suggestions are by Studio 4C. I think 4C is great, but we deliberately avoided 4C because previous Otakons have had entire panels devoted to them. Their work is highly regarded among much of the anime blogging community, and many people online have seen and extensively discussed their work, particularly the more “academic” sites. Because of this, we deemed them potentially too “heard of” to qualify. As for your non-4C picks: Pale Cocoon is/was on Crunchyroll (very high profile site) and because Ani*Kuri 15 is an anthology it makes picking one clip to represent it overall difficult (but let the record show that I love anime anthologies). But they are all good choices, and you do have a point: most of what we showed is not considered surrealist in nature. But they are still innovative. I didn’t write the con guide description and Yatterman wasn’t my pick, so I’ll leave those for others to answer.

      Banbanzai however WAS my pick, so I’ll answer your question on that: the trouble with the “mom exits” clip is that not just it’s the punchline to a pretty lengthy set up which arises as part of the extended argument over the girl. I could certainly have edited around that. The reason I didn’t use the clip you speak of is that the footage in which the argument is resolved (thus resulting in her exit) could have gotten me kicked out. I ran the Anime’s Craziest Deaths panel last year which got shut down for having objectionable content in the middle of the day. Because my future panelist status at Otakon was (is?) riding on the success of this panel, I didn’t want to take any chances whatsoever regarding content appropriateness this time around, so I didn’t use that clip. But you’re right, it’s awesome and would have been my first choice. Of course, I wonder if THAT would have interpreted as “only worth watching to laugh at how ridiculous it is”?

  3. Was hoping STA would be around long enough for me to see at least 1 ep of Sci-Fi Harry. ;-; If you’re gonna bring up girl’s MA, though, Ayane’s High Kick is pretty fun, too. Surprised there was never a manga for it, though.

  4. I could only find Penguin Memories untranslated on Niconico and YouTube. A transcription seems unnecessary if you watched some post-war movies or dramas that have the US as setting during the beginning of the twentieth century. I didn’t see anything special about this film. [What? You’re saying you just accepted the premise of this movie at face value such that there was no jarring conflict between the subject matter and the art? –Daryl] The only compliment I can make is that I liked the songs. It’s not a bad movie, but I would never put it in a “must see” category.

    • I was indeed thrown off constantly by the thought “why the cartoony penguins?”. What I meant by special was as in a nothing exceptionally good, which was what I was expecting. Only after reading Pandadice’s comment I got to understand the list.

  5. Pingback: Otakon 2010 « ???

  6. Ok this list I guess is made for the none hard core anime fanatics…
    Future Police Urashiman isn’t really that unheard of in Europe, but I guess in America it is.
    Great list guys, one question though….Yatterman…. 2008…. makes the list ??

  7. Hey all. Bagi is a good choice. Watching that this week likely. By the way, I wanted to remind listeners that I am working on English subbing Alps no Shoujo Heidi and have spoken with Gerald about a possible future review. Check out my blog if anyone wants to support my efforts. Keep up the awesomeness AWO. I’m going to be sending some rare stuff your way over this next year that can hopefully be reviewed at some point. Later.

  8. OT but related to an earlier AWO podcast: you mentioned that Space Adventure Cobra did not have fansubs. I have some old fansubs by ILA anime. Do you know if these are HK edits rather than true fansubs? There are one or two blatant errors (Peace and Love subtitled as “deja vous la”) but other than that it doesn’t seem *too* bad.

    • I had those ILA releases myself and yeah, they seemed all right. In the time since, a few months ago a Russian group did a slightly nicer quality release from some sort of dual-audio Russian/Japanese edition that included English subtitles. Again, they didn’t seem TOO bad, but I’m guessing they might have been translated from a Russian script.

  9. I have watched a staggering 2 – Future Police Urashiman and Brother, Dear Brother. I take that as firm e-validation of my good tastes. Banbanzai and Blazing Transfer Student added to my list of things to check out.

  10. I have seen surprisingly all ten, one of my good family friends co-workers is like 45 and has BOXES AND BOXES AND SHELVES of dvd’s vhs and beta tapes what ever those are. and for the past 6 odd something years since I was 12 been watching all these different things, most of them were raw so I was like OMG EXPLOSIONS!!! But I just recently saw Brother Dear Brother the other day so I see all in that list. I’m only 18 and I see then 10 animes you never heard of. I feel like a real winner… XD now off to the mall for shenanigans

  11. Oh Gosh! You are right, i never knew such anime titles exist. But i’m not yet convinced that they are “MUST SEE” animes. I will be watching some of them and prove you right 🙂

  12. Watched Blazing Transfer Student (working on procuring Banbanzai). It is a fun spoof that miraculously gets funnier with repeated viewings, but nevertheless only manages to be transiently memorable. You watch it, snicker, watch it again because you’re wanting more detail for the review, snicker some more because now you’re expecting that ‘rhetoric’ gag, and then you go watch something better and forget all about it. The real wit is in how precisely the animators capture the 70s era of shounen (and thus every era of shounen since) rather than the actual events, which are frivolous and juvenile. If it is inherently ‘great’, it is only such because of its historical relevance. Maybe. If you happened to come across it without knowing anything about it, you might reasonably dismiss it as just another bad shounen.

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