Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Otaku-san : Part 1

It was another arbit, nondescript final year evening/night when Rohan Choukkar approached Nanga Fakir in his final block abode (Room 188, H Wing to be precise) and convinced him to look at what he claimed was the next big thing in the not-to-be-taken-lightly business of killing time. Since killing time is the second name of Nanga Fakir and since Rohan was, notwithstanding his talents, a mere naïve junior, NF inwardly smiled and braced himself for a rather boring half an hour he would have to kill as a favor to this brat.

What he saw then however, was the first episode of Samurai Champloo - a 26 episode anime by Shinichiro Watanabe. By the end of the first episode, NF had been taken in by the totally slick style, wacky, idiosyncratic storytelling, dazzling visuals, a quirky, groovy soundtrack and an aestheticization of violence that seemed out of place in a mere cartoon - Japanese or not.

Unbeknownst to NF, the dark master of all arts and entertainments obscure and idiosyncratic - Ra - wielded considerable expertise in such matters. ("It's pronounced 'Ae-ni-may'", he jadedly answered NF's question: "Do you follow 'Ae-nai-ms'?") He smiled evilly and rubbed his hands in glee as he took NF aside and led him to his lair in the G Wing and exhibited his machine slaves downloading 'copious amounts' of anime. (NF doesn't know if Ra uses 'copious' copiously anymore.)

And so it was that NF found himself in the company of Ra, following his lead in finishing anime after anime, often teaming up with him to watch the following in either G or H Wing, high or dry: Elfen Lied (the much hyped first few minutes of awesome violence made way for a mediocre series featuring countless instances of totally gratuitous and sometimes unintentionally funny nudity), Ghost in the Shell - SAC and Second Gig (What a series! It remains one of the best anime series NF has watched ever) and Death Note which was airing during the final sem and every Thursday (or was it Wednesday?), courtesy Ra, the LAN would be aglow with yet another new episode for which NF would have waited with bated breath and barely concealed impatience the kind of which had not been seen since the end of The Jungle Book on Doordarshan's Sunday morning kid's slot.


To be continued in Part 2.


Arvind Krishna said...

I like Cowboy Bebop, the other Watanabe magnum opus, as well. Ghost in the Shell is just too brilliant. Including the movies, especially Innocence. Death Note lost its charm after L died. But Samurai Champloo has to be the greatest anime ever made.

I haven't really caught on to anything else.

Nanga Fakir said...

Do you remember we paid tributes to Mugen, Gin, Fuu chan and most importantly Momo san in our Final year project?

Arvind Krishna said...

I had almost forgotten about it! Waiting for third installment.