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Welcome to Count D's pet shop, where you can buy your dearest desire. However, take heed to the owner's advice: otherwise, the shop is not responsible for what may befall you...
In Chinatown, in a generic U.S. city (on the Japanese release, Newtype magazine claimed it was New York, but Animage and AX both noted the visual references to Los Angeles), "Count D," a fey Faustian pet shop owner, sells personified desires as "pets" to society's misfits, including a mother who refuses to accept that her own weak will turned her daughter into a drug addict, a faithless husband who cannot admit he drove his bride to suicide, and a proud gangster who wants people to fear his power. Signing deceptively simple contracts, they discover that deals made with the supernatural should never be taken lightly.
Leon, a loud-mouth cop who encapsulates several anime stereotypes of Americans, is convinced that the count is up to something, but the count is strangely welcoming and hospitable toward him. The "horrors" happen when purchasers ignore the strict instructions provided for the care of the unusual creatures they buy-Gremlins parallels are obvious. Old meets new and East meets West, not just in the mixture of mythologies, but in the mismatched central characters. Everyday laws cannot touch these criminals, but the count cuts through the red tape and delivers punishment where Leon cannot, without fear or favor toward a would-be president, or even a child star prepared to sell his soul for adult fame. Though our wiseacre policeman is too boneheaded to realize it, the count is on his side, transforming the story from a humdrum chiller into a moral X-Files, in which hell's own angel teams up with an earthy cop to mete out peculiar justice.
Matsuri Akino's original 1990 manga ran for over a dozen volumes in Mitzi Comics DX, and yet this 1999 TBS series was never planned as more than four episodes. Limited animation is bolstered by flashy effects (from some big names, including Doomed Megalopolis-director Rintaro on the opening animation), but the biggest mystery is why there was no more. Perhaps wisely, the show canceled itself before the "sin of the week" angle could become too predictable. Compare to similar rough justice in Judge.
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