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Kyoto, 1882: statesman Kaishu Katsu asks Oryu, widow of the great patriot Ryoma Sakamoto, to form a new division of the Kyoto Prefectural Police to protect the city from robot and demon crimes. Her recruits are all girls, the daughters of famous figures of the Edo period. Alas, they take their lead not from their famous fathers but from their senior officer, Yuko, daughter of Isami Kondo, a clumsy, sentimental glutton; they waste their time on love and sword fighting instead of getting down to the serious business of defending Kyoto.

The heroes of the later Tokugawa and early Meiji era have been thoroughly examined in anime, providing material for shows like Oi! Ryoma and Peacemaker Kurogane. But MK is based on a PlayStation 2 game, and a game from Oji Hiroi, the man behind Sakura Wars, at that. It takes a similarly cavalier attitude toward history, using historical events as a springboard into the realms of fighting-female fantasy. It aims to attract the widest possible range of fans by crashing Ruro ni Kenshin into Sailor Moon and throwing in historical figures, robots, and cars. Rumiko Takahashi, the creator of Ranma , is credited for her work designing the characters from the original game, in the same manner as Masamune Shirow on Landlock and Kosuke Fujishima on Sakura Wars-it looks good on the box, but doesn't actually lend all that much to the quality of the production. Meanwhile, evil characters attempt to bring Shutendoji back from the dead in order to plunge Kyoto into an age of darkness.

It would be kind to describe this show as an action parody, but the running gags about small breasts, wholly unnecessary bath scenes, and monster-of-the-week idiocy make kindness difficult. The producers have employed stellar talent and spent serious money to prove that what works in a game doesn't necessarily make great anime. N

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Name Moeyo Ken
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Romaji: Kido Shinsengumi Moeyo Ken
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Start Year 2004
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Aliases Robot Shinsengumi Flashing Sword
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