Part 4- American References in Anime- Cowboy Bebop, Ghost in the Shell and Scifi

Bringing this series of posts back into the fold! It’s July! So you best believe I will be talking about American References in Anime and kind of vice versa. But I’m going to dive in with Scifi this time!

Cowboy Bebop

This anime has become a sort of staple in America. Being that it’s an omage to American Jazz and Cowboy Spaghetti Westerns it’s also about ragtag bounty hunters in space living in a wreck of a ship eating self heating cup noodles with a corgi. But artistically it’s gritty and filled with action. Shoot outs, hard lines, sarcastic dialogue, and characters that weren’t japanese in origin but ethnically mixed with english names.

After the run of the show, several years later a live action sci-fi show in America aired called Firefly.

Firefly blew up after one season but the premise was rather familiar with anime fans. A junky ship, sarcastic dialogue with a ragtag team in space I honestly couldn’t un-see the similarities. Although the two had different premises their plots were rather linear short adventures in the the day to day like of space drama. With all that being said there is a live action coming our way that (like everything else) is also on hiatus, but we have hope that filming will resume eventually.

Then there’s…

Ghost in the shell

Starring a cyborg who is deeply rooted in a police department in what everyone calls a futuristic cyberpunk era. Due to it’s originality and catching detailed art style Americans ate this anime up QUICK. It was incredibly popular and spawned MANY OVAs (I’m not even sure I’ve seen them all!)

Then they made a live action movie.

This was not as good. And a little disappointing. There were issues with the cast. There were issues with the plot. And the look of the world was colorful which you wouldn’t usually pair with this series being that the art style was so edgy and detailed. It’s very pretty but to me it’s far from the anime or the manga.

There was a strange fad amongst anime in the late 90s early 2000s that often mixed foreign languages and more commonly found, soundtracks that weren’t Japanese. In fact, this opening is in russian, and is still sung at con karaoke rooms to this day. So I’ll segway right into the music. Like Cowboy Bebop with contemporary jazz, Ghost in the shell had electronica/new age and take my leave.

(I know you weebs know this one. Don’t pretend.)




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