Lurkers' Retreat
Manga Manga Video
MANV 1204

Cert  12


Osamu Tezuka is often acknowledged as the father of modern anime and manga. Sometimes that is argued over, but it cannot be doubted that with creations from Tetsuwan Atom to large scale efforts like Space Firebird and plenty more that in his lifetime he contributed much to the genre that became the modern day product. Blackjack is another one of those characters that stick in your memory.

What we have here is a sort of "General Hospital meets the A team" or something like that. The character with his trademark scarface and his sidekick Pinoco this time get involved with a group of people that were known as supermen. However, by the time Blackjack got to meet his first superman, a young girl that he had operated on some years before, all he found were riddles and unanswerable questions. He was also left with a large number of telephone calls on his answering machine that he seemed to be disinterested with until the perpetrater decided to take matters - and Pinoco - into her own hands.

The fact is that this is a great relief. Yes, there is the occasional bit of blood but you could hardly call this a beat-em-up! Instead we have a mystery which would not look out of place in a normal evening television lineup, if anyone could convince UK TV companies that anime is watchable. The plot is good, the animation is a little mixed - the mixture of Tezuka's distinctive style with newtype anime charas is a little odd and Pinoco's not quite the same as she is in the manga either - but bearable, and the dubbing is reasonable for a change. Yes, I do like this!

Blackjack manga was issued in the US by Viz Comics

[5 stars]

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