Action-packed anime sci-fi crime series from Japan
Brian Camp | Bronx, NY | 08/04/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Don't be put off by the awkward title, "Heat Guy J." This is an enjoyable futuristic crime caper with lots of action, some good technological effects, expertly rendered digitally animated backgrounds and a flavorful urban crime thriller ambience that we don't see much in anime these days. It follows the exploits of Daisuke, a callow young cop working for the City Safety Management Agency as part of a special three-person unit whose rather vague assignment is to look for "signs" of impending crimes. Daisuke would be dead meat if it weren't for his bulky "super android" partner, J, who's constantly taking bullets and bombs to protect Daisuke. The third person in the unit is Kyoko, an attractive redhead and put-upon office manager who has to issue Daisuke a gun and ration of bullets before every job. Support is provided by the sultry Dr. Bellucci (who has more than a passing resemblance to a certain Italian actress), who tends to J after every mishap and restores him to working strength.Being a TV series, it lacks the hard edge and gritty, bloody violence of an earlier wave of OAV sci-fi crime thrillers that included "Midnight Eye Goku," "Cyber City Oedo 808" and "A.D. Police Files." Also, the design of the young hero seems more inspired by boy band pop idols than by crime-fighting anime predecessors like Goku in "Midnight Eye Goku" and Taki in "Wicked City." The plots, at least on the basis of the first four episodes, are not as intricate or compelling as those of the series cited above and are probably this series' weak points. Daisuke's chief problem appears to be the Leonelli crime family, the stewardship of which has been newly inherited by Clair, the young, body-pierced, somewhat unhinged son of the family's previous Don or "Vampire," as the position is inexplicably called here. Perhaps the true nature of their threat to the heroes will become clearer as the series progresses. The series is set in a sprawling metropolis (in which police cars are marked by both English and Japanese lettering) that's an amalgam of future urban centers, resembling San Francisco in some shots, and Tokyo and Hong Kong in others. There's a nice sense of the city's back alley flavor, as manifested in its immigrant cultural mix, open air markets and red light district."
A bit thin, but so stylish you won't care
Ilse von Hoffmanstahl | California | 09/05/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I originally saw this anime at Anime Expo '03, and I really enjoyed it! I like the 'strong, silent type', and J is all that! The 'villain', snarky little punk Clair Leonelli, is really creepy, and he reminds me a lot of unhinged villans like Gary Oldham's character in "The Professional" or Jack Nicholson's Joker in "Batman". I gave this anime four stars because the plot in the beginning is a bit hard to follow--Daisuke Aurora, J's human partner, is investigating an entity known as "The Shop", which is smuggling illegal goods and allowing illegal immigrants (not to mention an android, which except for J, are forbidden) into the city. There are mob-style hits on whoever seems to be connected with this smuggling activity, but eventually I just give up on trying to figure it out and watch the show. The visuals are really compelling (nice mix of CGI and cel-style animation) and the action is well done. Looking forward to the next disc!"
Ilse von Hoffmanstahl | 03/02/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It is an action anime and it follows the adventures of daisuke aurora who is a lazy cop and the mob run by the insane clair leonelli. I found that the cg was cool and so was the animation. It was amusing."
A great new take on cyborg-police anime.
Ilse von Hoffmanstahl | 07/26/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Finally there's a new police anime, I've been waiting since 8-Man, Angel Cop and Tank Police for a good series. And suffice to say, Heat Guy fits the bill very nicely, the first episode had me hooked, and the other 3 on the 1st DVD just kept getting better and better.The animation is the best I've seen thus far, and trust me I've seen a lot of anime in my time.Also, the action scenes are friggin' amazing, especially when J fights. So if you like cyborgs and police-inspired anime, look no further than Heat Guy J, it's a fantastic new series that I'm sure will keep getting better and better.Buy this ASAP."