We’re sampling the summer season’s selection! Check out our other pilot write-ups:
On a lark, I was showing a list of this summer’s pilots to a friend of mine who has really only ever seen one show: BAKA AND TEST (don’t ask). I determined that he would pick the first one I would review from the stack. In hindsight, this is not the best method because of course he’s going to pick RAIL WARS! because c’mon – it’s called RAIL WARS!
Please note that the exclamation point is part of the title. I am in no way attempting to convey any sort of enthusiasm for this show.
This show begins by telling us that our main character can’t wait to enter Japan National Railways Company Academy because the JNR has the highest job security of any company around, combining the timeliness of trains with the steady paycheck of a government job. He’s a real firecracker! Then he meets this chick who can run up trees and has huge boobs, followed by another girl who has even bigger boobs – and he even sees her panties! Then he gets to the academy and meets his instructor (who also has big boobs) and then they take tests about trains!
Eventually they chase down a pair of purse-snatchers (with the help of their thorough knowledge of trains and train schedules), but thankfully things quickly get back to the trains.
So, yeah, this show is for otaku who love trains. I get that. And I understand that there’s a culture of “trainspotting” that has roots in several countries all around the world, so I’m certain there are people who would enjoy this sort of program. And sure enough in this first episode we see slumber car trains and electric line testing trains and even a steam-powered train.
You’d expect, then, that these trains would all be lovingly rendered and showcased. I’m happy to inform you that you’ll be disappointed in this regard as well! Usually the trains are so big you can’t actually fit them on the screen, so no detail shines through. What’s worse is that sometimes they’re not even fully rendered when zoomed out!
There was a time when I was watching the intro of this show that I thought things might take a turn for the bizarre, and the students of the train academy would have to defend the trains from attacks of ninjas or something and have train-based powers. You know – actual wars on the rails. I’d totally watch that show! But RAIL WARS! is what we got instead.
I’d rather take the bus.
About the Author
Matt Murphy is a freelance nerd who has contributed to many nerd websites. You can reach him by going to where the light meets the shadow, by sending out zeta-brainwaves or by following him on Twitter @Murphix.