Witchblade News

Witchblade is a franchise comprised of 1 anime series, 1 manga series
From Anime Vice
News Witchblade Flick Needs Script May 12, 2009
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Good evening Anime Vice! Well, it's evening for me, anyway. I have been very busy with my new job and had family stuff going on last weekend so for those of you who were waiting for Part 2 of "Mindfuck Week" of "Dunce Cap", I'm sorry. This weekend is looking a lot freer so I'll look to get the video done and post it sometime next week. Anywho, let's get back on topic! Today's Dunce Cap episode covers my thoughts on FUNimation's Complete Collection Blu-ray release of Witchblade!

 WARNING! This video contains explicit language. Also, this video is not edited in any way.

  
  

I want to add that I borrowed this boxset from my friend tazfreak1987 and I've actually been sitting on this video for a few weeks. I know that Sonata has been waiting for me to cover this series so hope she enjoys! Also, I did a blog last summer about the series and my thoughts on the boxset itself. You can check that out here.

Please feel free to provide suggestions for an anime or manga for me to talk about and I will do my best to oblige. Also, if you are curious about anything discussed in this-or previous-episode(s) don't hesitate to ask me for more information/opinions.

Last episode: NGE=WTF

-Will McQuigg ( sotyfan16) is your everyday anime/manga enthusiast. You can also find him on Twitter ( bildo_88). 
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Well fuckin' A! I just finished watching the Witchblade Blu-ray boxset and some of the extras which totaled to about 10 hours in the last 3 days (just shows how much time I have on my hands while at school). Here's what I got for y'all... 
 
I of course have to start off with the animation. It looks great on the Blu-ray if you ask me. The Witchblade anime has a style all its own that Gonzo really brought to life in a way American animation could not. Nothing against the Witchblade comic of course as it looks good but standard comics haven't interested me. I noticed there was a consistent flow between detailed and less detailed animation for the characters based on their distance from the screen and whether they were the focus point of a scene. 
 
Next are the characters. The single mother Masane Amaha is a good place to start. She is the current bearer of the Witchblade. She has no memory of her past and lives only to protect her daughter, Rihoko Amaha. She isn't the brightest but her determination and will make her a formidable opponent. Not to mention she can drink like no other and eat more than necessary and still keep a shapely figure. Her flaws and how she comes to terms with owning the Witchblade and working with Douji make her story all the more tragic and heroic. Rihoko is a cute little girl who always takes care of her mom. She was found with Masane along with documentation stating she was her daughter (later to be found false). Riko is also a good cook and goes everywhere by herself (dangerous). For being so young she deals with losing both her mothers

How cute..
How cute..

 (her biological is Reina Soho) and finally ends up with her father. Then we have the freelance photographer, Yuusuke Tozawa. This guy has it rough driving various characters all over Tokyo while working on his big scoop (the real deal behind the murders and Douji and the NSWF). Pretty sure he had feelings for Masane (or, Melony, as he called her in reference to her large breasts) and he always went out of his way to dig up information and help the Amahas. Next is Reiji Takayama, Douji Group's Research Director (he later quit the company). This man evolved as the series progressed. He went from strong and demanding to caring and realistic. His hook up with Masane was funny and satisfying as he affirmed he would do his best to fulfill his role as Riko's father. Lastly, I cover the Neogenes, who are in fact inbred to be each other's mother, daughter, grandmother, and aunt (the same man's genes were used to create each one). These women or "sisters" get tested and fitted with Cloneblades in order to create the perfect woman who can wield the Witchblade. Despite how messed up their stuff is they are all damn good looking. Oh, I'll mention the Ex-cons and iWeapons since they are created with the bodies of the deceased (makes me think of an extreme version of Universal Soldier). 
 
On to the story I guess...The comic revolves around a New York City Detective named Sara. Other than that I don't know much as I haven't read the comic. Now, the anime has a completely different story. In the 22nd century Douji Group and the NSWF were working together on their research of the Witchblade in order to copy its power. This ended in the Witchblade releasing its power and destroying much of Tokyo while killing countless people. The Witchblade was lost for 6 years until Masane Amaha showed up. Masane becomes employed by Douji and works to destroy rogue Ex-cons. Sometimes she even has to fight Neogenes as they attempt to capture the Wtichblade. The story becomes tragic as you learn that anyone with a Cloneblade or the Witchblade will be consumed or killed and turn to dust/liquid as death is the only escape from their bonds. The anime story works very well for itself and the Witchblade franchise as the Witchblade has been around for untold generations and moves from host to host causing destruction. Gonzo choosing this particular story was a good move and made the Top Cow creators very happy as the lead is damaged and has to deal with the consequences of her actions.

Give me moo-re
Give me moo-re

 
The Witchblade story originates from the founders of Top Cow Productions who all left Marvel Comics because they were fed up with not getting recognition and no longer wanted their creativity to be stifled. Thanks to this bold move the Witchblade comic was born. The anime came around a while after the comic as the creators wanted to do something new to expand the Witchblade franchise. And what better way than anime?! Top Cow gave Gonzo large reign over the Witchblade anime project. Well, except for an 8 page document stating there was to be no nudity (so that's why I'm kind of disappointed) and the lead wasn't to be raped or have tentacles and so on and so forth (sounds to me they were afraid it would become a hentai (which it could)). When Gonzo finished their work the creators were actually surprised that the franchise was sexed-up with a very different story but found it very good as they understood Japanese culture and enjoyed a lot a Japanese work themselves. Another interesting feature of the Witchblade Top Cow didn't consider that Gonzo added in was the mixture of pleasure and pain while fighting (like a form of masochism).

I certainly liked the series and I'll probably buy it sometime (I borrowed the boxset from a friend) but with the sad ending and no idea what will happen with the rest of the cast, the Neogenes, and the Witchblade I feel like there is a gaping hole in an otherwise different story. Again, I'm also sad there wasn't any nudity since the rating is TV-MA (only for language and violence). In closing I'll say thank you Top Cow, Gonzo, and FUNimation for this different and interesting story featuring a female lead and a mysterious weapon that knows not good or evil.

WTH
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Last night i finshed the show Witchblade on IFC and oh my god i loved the show but the end was so sad.How could they end it like that a child needs her mother and no matter how they set it up it's a sad end to a grate show.
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Like Skwisgaar above, we love our MILFs and GMILFs. In a sense, Skwisgaar embodies everything that is mother’s day. And though they aren’t highlighted often, especially since stories about moms don’t really appeal a whole lot to the western anime market, there actually are quite a few anime and manga that center around moms. While I probably could have mentioned Full Metal Alchemist and shows and manga people actually know about, I chose instead to highlight some shows where the main character is either a mom or is otherwise heavily centered around moms.

Reiko Kamohara
 
Kaasan – Mom’s Life

Kaasan – Mom’s Life explores the everyday life of Reiko Kamohara, a woman balancing her job as a mangaka between caring for her two young children, Bunji and Fumi, and their dog, John. Bunji is a little slow, loud, brash and obsessed with a sentai superhero named Hopperman (hilariously mistranslated as Batman in the first couple of episodes of the Crunchyroll sub since Batta is Japanese for grasshopper). Fumi is normally well behaved, but the way she’s overly spoiled by her father makes her instantly jealous of anyone or anything that receives more attention than her. As for Reiko’s husband, his job as a war photojournalist means he spends long amounts of time out of the country, and when he is home is he’s usually getting plastered. The only real extra help Reiko gets is from her mother, who’s living with them. Reiko has an almost constantly exasperated expression on her face from the stress of her work and caring for two very active children.

The ongoing series is being released streaming on Crunchyroll and Anime News Network.

Sachiko Azuma
 
With the Light: Raising an Autistic Child

Sachiko is thrilled after the birth of her son, Hikaru, but by the time Hiakru is two years old she notices something doesn’t seem right. He doesn’t speak, still isn’t toilet trained and is easily upset by perplexing things, such as the sound of babies crying or Buddhist chanting . The worst is when they attend a funeral, where the family of Sachiko’s husband, Masato, compares Hikaru’s ill behavior to that of another similarly aged and well-behaved child in attendance and ostracize Sachiko for her bad parenting. Masato’s mother in particular believes that Sachiko is a bad mother, and after Hikaru is diagnosed is initially convinced it’s Sachiko’s fault Hikaru is autistic. The rest of the manga is about Hikaru’s development and how Sachiko must sometimes struggle to make sure he gets the proper education and treatment in a Japanese society that’s less-than-understanding when it comes to the disabled.

The manga is being released in English by Yen Press. The mangaka for this series, Keiko Tobe, unfortunately passed away recently, leaving the manga unfinished. There’s also a live action drama for the series.

Masane Amaha

Witchblade

Masane is a single mother moving to Tokyo with her young daughter, Rihoko. The two are on the run from child services, who believe they can provide a better home for Rihoko than an unemployed drifter like Masane can. Though Masane is ditzy and many times Rihoko acts more mature and more like the parent than she does, the two don’t want to be separated. The fact that Masane has the Witchblade is important in relation to Rihoko late in the series.
 
The anime is being carried in the US by FUNimation.

Mito

Space Pirate Mito

Mito is a three foot tall humanoid alien with the appearance of a 6-year-old. Mito owns multiple “mail suits” which allow her to take on the appearance of a human adult. She wears one such non-combat mail suit in front of her half-human, half-alien son, Aoi. It isn’t until Aoi is 15 years old that he learns that truth when he catches Mito removing her mail suit after coming back from a yearlong space mission. While she kept it a secret from him, she did so to protect him from her dangerous lifestyle.
 
Space Pirate Mito is available in the US from Media Blasters.

Yamada Tamaki

My Grandma is an Idol

And now a series that highlights grandmas! Tamaki is an elderly 65-year-old woman from a wealthy family who comes to visit her son’s family for the first time since her granddaughter’s birth. She never approved of her son’s decisions in life, but after losing her money in a real estate scam (of which her family is initially unaware), she has no choice but to move in with them. Tamaki drives her 16-year-old granddaughter, Momoka, insane with the extremely formal and antiquated lifestyle that she forces on her. But everything changes for the worst for Momoka after Tamaki demands she take her to the TV station where her father works. Tamaki gets electrocuted, which renews her cells and gives her the appearance of a 16-year-old girl. Not only does she start attending Momoka’s school, but because of her beauty everyone begins referring to Momoka as “Old Yamada” and Tamaki as “Young Yamada.” If that weren’t bad enough, the boy Momoka has a crush on starts developing feelings for her grandma!

Mutsuki Ichimonji, Kisaragi Ninomai, Yayoi Sanzenin, Uzuki Shitenno and Satsuki Gokajo

Happy Lesson

It’s a harem series where instead of multiple potential love interests, the protagonist has multiple mothers (but not in the “Heather has Two Mommies” kind of way). Chitose Hiotose (Susumu Arisaka in the manga or “Cheetos” if you’re watching the dub) is an orphan being cared for (somewhat against his will) by his five teachers. Mitsuki is the Japanese Classics teacher and Chitose’s homeroom teacher; Kisaragi is the emotionless science teacher with somewhat of a cruel streak; Yayoi is the attractive school nurse who’s also a Shinto priestess; Uzuki is the cosplay-obsessed art teacher; Satsuki is the loud and brash athletics coach.

Happy Lesson was released in the US under the (now defunct) A.D. Vision. ADV Manga also began releasing the manga version, but given that they folded long before many of their manga were completed I’m not sure if they completed the series.  
 
The Japan Girl
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Okay, okay, its a bit dated (since its from dragon con '08) but the pictures look just as good now, as they did back then. Granted, I'm not a big fan of tattoos, but body paint seems to be such an interesting (an needle-less) way to get a really stunning image of the body across. The fact that its temporary only adds more to the allure for me. 

And  a video of the "creation" process.
 
 
(Via the Great White Snark/Funimation's twitter)

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this is the first cool battle where you see the witchblade in action i love it and this is an extended scene too OMG im getting goosebumps

  


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I just finished Witchblade tonight. While it was one of the more addictive and interesting anime series I've seen in a long time, I was very dissatisfied with the ending. I prefer closure, but this one was left wide open....well, as long as you keep in mind that just about anything can happen in an anime.
I actually don't have any idea what it was that kept me so into the story from start to finish. I watched the entire series incredibly quickly (for me), and wondered how it was possible that it would all end by episode 24. It seemed like it could go on for 50 episodes, easily.

I usually have a more thoughtful assessment of a piece of art, but the appeal of Witchblade eludes me (it's not the buxom female characters, although those are certainly nice). I highly, highly recommend it. I've never read Witchblade comics or seen the TV show, so I came into it as a total newbie. I absolutely loved it...except for the end.
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