Many cities on the Earth are destroyed when a gigantic meteor breaks up into smaller devastating pieces. The impacts across the globe spawn a series of earthquakes and millions die. In the aftermath, several factions begin to surface and the world has quickly fallen into the "survival of the fittest" mindset. In the Kanto region, a man by the name of the Slum King has set his sight on domination. One man stands in his way... Violence Jack.
A young couple are attacked by a biker gang called Hell's Wind. Jun's boyfriend is massacred by the gang before her eyes, and she's then raped by them. Hell's Wind next invades a small town and begins killing the villagers. They get more than they bargain for on this particular violence trip. -summary
I am still struggling on what exactly is more horrifying. The fact someone out there actually thought Violence Jack was important enough to make it to a DVD set, or that I have actually seen this putrid anime OVA featured on at least one person's greatest anime of all time list; both are just too disturbing to think about because these people obviously have very low standards when it comes down to their entertainment. I have seen some very bad titles over the years, with some of them actually forcing me to put them off for a few days in between episodes. Violence Jack put me off a few weeks to even months in between the three episodes. I thought this anime was bad before, but after this rewatch it is totally wretched, and I mean wow, unbelievable.
Violence Jack is a three part OVA series based on random stories from Go Nagai's manga of the same name. This volume is meant to be second in Japanese language and third in English. Since these stories are stand alone they can be seen in any order. Directed by Takuya Wada, Hell's Wind continues to increase the body count while examining the exact same themes concerning evil people with power, and being as tasteless as it can possibly be along the way.
The plot begins when Jun returns for vengeance against the gang, and she begins to take them out in an all out battle with explosive arrows. Later, Violence Jack makes his dramatic entrance and one would think this is when things would become better. Well, after the first two volumes starring our charismatic-handicapped hulking friend, I did not expect anything other than staleness and that's what I got. Jack tosses a few punches, and then stares into space only to be shot repeatedly as if he's some type of irresistible force of nature just waiting to explode on these poor bastards asses, and then.... he does nothing but hit the floor, only to be bandaged up and transported to the next battle. Yeah, that's what happens. Then we wait and wait for another lame action scene that leads to an ending leaving story elements wide open. I know that OVA's are usually low budget and one shouldn't expect much from them, but if you seen Area 88, Battle Angel, or Neo Tokyo, then you will know that these titles can be pretty damn amazing when put into the right hands. Violence Jack is so poorly done that I can see it pushing away any newcomers to the anime genre. Please dismiss any claims of this being the gold standard of anime in any time period.
Wada also doesn't skip out on the misogyny, as you will be treated to some really long torture scenes that grows quite annoying. Outside of some really sick death scenes that I did think were kind of cool. I really didn't enjoy this volume. I didn't care for the side characters at all, Jack is just too damn lame for words, and there were some stupid story elements. Seriously, Violence Jack makes Fist of the Northstar look like 2001.
Visually this volume looked a little better and there were moments where the midnight dark blues helped with the atmosphere. The violence is pretty graphic at times with guts torn out of stomachs, and people ripped into two pieces. However, there are far too many shortcuts taken with still action, and too many explosives simulating action. There's no real choreography to speak of, and as a result the animation just really isn't good. The language is only in subtitles, and some times the words move by a little too fast. My feelings on the voice acting is mixed; some of the adult characters sounded alright while the kids were just too chibi for my taste.
If I will give this anime OVA any credit at all, is that it truly knows what it wants to be. It maintains a dark, sinister tone through out. The world is indeed hell and the backgrounds along with the vile mannerisms of the local bandits depict this. It's such a shame though that this OVA wasn't put into the hands of people with talent. To this day, I have not read the manga on this and although it sounds promising, I can't bring myself to reading it, because Go Nagai's batting average has been pretty low from the things I've seen. If you enjoy over the top violent anime with hentai elements then this is for you. Others who need better storytelling, well developed and interesting characters shouldn't even bother.