Space Dandy – Dandy, Indeed

As much as I love most things deriving from my second home, The Land of the Rising Sun, the one thing that I simply haven’t been able to get into is Anime.

Well, let me clarify that.  There was a time when I was younger before I even met my first Japanese friend that I was into Anime for a bit.  Series like “Project A-ko”, “Dominion: Tank Police” and of course, “Sailor Moon” were great ones for me.

Even after having fallen out of that short phase, I was pulled back in briefly with “Moldiver”.

But after that brief stint, I was done.  Even with occasional coaxing from friends and the curious look into a hyped-up new series, I wasn’t able to jump back in.

But a few weeks ago while watching a show on Cartoon Network, I saw a promo for a show called, “Space Dandy”, that was airing that weekend.
The show is about an alien hunter who searches for unregistered aliens and turns them in for a big pay day.
Nothing about what was said in the promo caught my attention, only the beauty of the animation itself hooked me in.  From the short promo alone I could tell that this was going to be a high-quality production.  I immediately set my DVR.

It wasn’t until the first commercial break that I realized that what I was watching was the world premiere of the series and after further research I discovered this first episode was premiering in the U.S. BEFORE it premiered in Japan.  That is unpresedented in the world of Japanese productions.  Suddenly, I felt as if I was in some VIP screening room.

What’s interesting about Space Dandy to me is that it’s not the type of show I would have watched a few years ago.  The stories are all over the place, full of fan service and there is absolutely no continuity – but I LIKE it!  In fact, one of the most recent episodes was a bit more subdued than the others and actual had a followable plot.  The story actually made sense and was easy to understand – and I was BORED!  It was a good episode, but the reason why I like the series is because it’s so different from anything I’ve seen before.  I wanted the strange, uncanny wackiness to continue (and it did in the subsequent episode – yay!).

Also, the music is GREAT – think ’70s funk meets ’80s synthesizers.  The show has a nice and relaxed feel to it and never takes itself too seriously.  Also the voice acting is fantastic.  It is one of the rare times where I prefer the English voice actors to those of the Japanese.

This series is already getting critical acclaim so I’m happy that something that I am thoroughly enjoying is being enjoyed by others – unlike other shows (I’m looking at you, FOX – please don’t cancel “Almost Human”).

So if you’re in the market for an anime that gives you a different feel from the others, definitely check out, “Space Dandy”.  It airs during Cartoon Network’s Toonami on Saturday nights.

It’s one heck of a show, Baby.