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Tactics, Vol. 1
Tactics Vol 1
Genres: Television, Anime & Manga, Animation
UR     2006     2hr 30min

Meet supernatural sleuth and writer Kantaro Ichinomiya. Kantaro spends his days traveling the Japanese countryside, fighting demons and writing about his adventures in hopes of finding the resting place of the mysterious D...  more »


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Movie Details

Genres: Television, Anime & Manga, Animation
Sub-Genres: Television, Anime & Manga, Animation
Studio: Manga Video
Format: DVD - Color - Animated,Subtitled
DVD Release Date: 06/27/2006
Release Year: 2006
Run Time: 2hr 30min
Screens: Color
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: Unrated
Languages: English, Japanese
Subtitles: English

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Movie Reviews

Gorgeous Goblins
A&M Junkie | UK | 05/20/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"Young Ichinomiya Kantaro is a professional writer who writes articles and books about Japanese folklore. He spends his time investigating supernatural occurrences in the traditional Japanese countryside (from supernatural trains to photos that suck the life from people), while also being hired by the public as a "demon-hunter" or exorcist. However, although he exorcises evil spirits, he has the ability to see and communicate with demons. This ability caused him to be ostracised by other children when he was young, but has also given him the ability to be friends with demons and goblins (or tengu).

Throughout his childhood Kantaro become obsessed with the infamous "ogre-eating goblin" who legend has it was an extremely powerful goblin who vanished. While investigating another case in a quiet village he comes across a seal that contains the goblin and he releases and names him "Haruka." Due to demon law because he was named by a human, Haruka now has to treat Kantaro as his master.

Haruka has to cope with his loss of past memories and having to take orders from Kantaro. Meanwhile Kantaro is completely enamored with his new friend. The two live with a fox-demon girl Youko, who has become their unofficial housemaid and is constantly having to help Kantaro write his articles to meet their deadlines. The trio are joined in their adventures by little girl Suzu, who has a major crush on Haruka, and Sugino, a gorgeous pretty boy white-winged tengu who is now a mountain god, and Sugino's wife, Muu, who is a strange looking small green demon who looks more like an alien.

The name goblin always brings forth images of ugly creatures. However goblins in Tactics are treated as beautiful bishounen protectors who have spiritual powers and wings. Haruka, for example, is a very good looking black-winged dignified man, who spends most of the series with a deadpan expression as he wonders what he is doing taking orders from Kantaro and looking after the young girls. In episode 13, later in the series, there is an funny moment when Haruka is forced to take Youko and Suzu into the woods so that they can do their "business."

Tha main attraction of Tactics is the loveable characters who all have their own personalities, quirks and humorous moments. For example Sugino, whose main weakness seems to be his love of Muu and jealously of anyone who goes near her (though it is not possible for us to understand the main attraction between those two!), while Muu spends her time following Kantaro around who she has a crush on. Although mainly a shojo anime there is a strong hint of shonen-ai between Kantaro and Haruka with the whole master / servant concept. Although Kantaro spends time trying to find a rich wife (as the group are constantly broke), it is to Haruka that he declares that he would die to protect.

I saw the original Japanese version so I am unaware of if there will be an English soundtrack, but for those who prefer the Japanese voices, Haruka is voiced by the same actor who voiced Yuri in Kyo Kara Maoh and Sugino by the actor who voiced Kazuki in the Getbackers.

The animation is gorgeous with the same soft tones found in animes like Kyo Kara Maoh, DN Angel, and Loveless. The 25 episode series is made up mostly of stand-alone stories and it is not until episode 12 that we get the hint of a continuing storyline. For me that was the main problem with the series, due to the lack of an strong ongoing storyline it is difficult to become addicted to it and it sometimes become repetitive. Although I have given it 4 stars, 3.5 would be fairer. However, for fans like I am, of the anime series mentioned above, gorgeous bishounen guys with wings, or if you are just looking for a cute new series, this a well worth a look.
An interesting glimpse of turn-of-the-century Tokyo
Karin Welss | Dublin, CA USA | 12/16/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I've only seen about half of this series so far, but it's an enjoyable supernatural adventure show about a young writer/exorcist and his household of demons. The unusual setting--Tokyo in the period around the turn of the 20th century--and frequently beautiful artwork help distinguish this series from a number of other entries in the ghost hunter/demon exorcist genre.

Though the general mood is upbeat, and the characters are fairly standard--the cute, cheerful young hero; the brooding gorgeous powerful older man; a cute but violent-tempered girl--there are hints of some deeper and darker themes here, particularly as it pertains to the interrelationships between the various characters.

Kantaro, our exorcist-hero apparently led a very lonely childhood as an outcast and the butt of abuse from his peers. Having developed his supernatural powers in early adulthood, he's managed to bind (enslave, actually) several powerful supernatural beings to serve as his friends and helpers (and possibly, in the case of Haruka, a love interest). There are hints that this unequal relationship will become an issue in later episodes--the first seven episodes touch on this theme a little bit, particularly for the winged, broodingly handsome Haruka, who feels like he's been humbled and reduced to the status of a pet and servant, and who clearly resents Kantaro's assumptions of friendship.

All in all, a very well-done genre piece so far. I'm looking forward to seeing how it continues."