Cowboy Bebop

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Cowboy Bebop

Postby lhb412 » Wed Jun 15, 2011 10:29 pm

In honor of Cowboy Bebop: The Movie making it's US Blu Ray debut later this month I've started rewatching this cultural touchstone (for me, anyway) of a series. I'm only a few episodes in (Asteroid Blues, Stray Dog Strut, and Honky Tonk Woman) and I'm still amazed by how strongly the show starts off. Most great shows seem to need at least a little time to build up to greatness, others that start out with a bang - but actually blew their wad at the beginning and have less to show for it as they go on. At the very least, anime typically reserve the first few episodes for introducing all their characters, and while Cowboy Bebop does technically do that it takes its own sweet time. You get the feeling that there position is that they'll complete the main cast when they feel like it. The introduction we're given to Spike and Jet in episode one is brief, and we end up learning about how they operate through the episode's main story without even thinking that's what we're doing, fully invested as we are in the plot about a performance enhancing madman and his lady friend being hunted down by both the mob, the law, and our bounty hunter protagonists. This philosophy of exposition extends to the whole series and is a big aspect of what makes the show great: there is world building and character development and several story arcs being carefully built up, but they never diminish the individual episode's commitment to being a good story on its own. I suppose what I;m getting at is that the first episode is a great way to start the series, a great introduction, but it doesn't feel like an introduction. Come to think of it, adding or subtracting a few shots of Ein the dog to the episodes (the only way to tell the order since he joins the crew in episode 2) the first three episodes could be aired in any order!
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Postby metal_bryan » Thu Jun 16, 2011 1:06 am

I've found this show to be quite possibly the only one able to appeal to almost any audience outside of people who just don't like animation or watching movies/shows at all. In fact, I know a few people who HATE anime, but still like Bebop.

I could go on forever about how each aspect of the show was executed to perfection.
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Postby MekaGojira3k » Thu Jun 16, 2011 8:49 am

I love Cowboy Bebop. I've been catching re-runs here and there on Adult Swim recently, and my god..that show has aged well. It's just so well made that I can't find anything to complain about. I really need to sit down and re-watch it some time, maybe this summer.
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Postby Dr Kain » Thu Jun 16, 2011 9:19 am

Excellent anime, but not the best. There are better series out there, but this is definitely up there.
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Postby lhb412 » Thu Jul 28, 2011 7:03 pm

I just realized that Jet's "Don't know and have no opinion" has become a go-to phrase for me when someone asks me my thoughts on some point of contention I don't want to get involved in.

For some reason I always thought of episode 4 as a lesser episode - maybe because I thought it was too sci-fi and that CB should stick to not-strictly sci-fi tales in a sci-fi setting. Anyway, I was stupid. It's a great episode.
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Postby EricDent » Tue Dec 27, 2011 2:04 am

Great show, great music, great characters (really love Radical Edward, cause she's so darn fun), and great story.

Of course it deserves to be noted that the English dub is excellent, if the producer of the show says that he prefers the English version to the Japanese, that's saying something good.

I just hope that live action joke never gets made.
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Postby lhb412 » Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:08 pm

EricDent wrote:
Of course it deserves to be noted that the English dub is excellent, if the producer of the show says that he prefers the English version to the Japanese, that's saying something good.



It's partially because it's such a good dub, but I think it also has a lot to do with the fact that it's such a western show it makes since for the characters to be speaking English. Similarly, Hayao Miyazaki says he considers the French dub of Porco Rosso (with Jean Reno) definitive because he always imagined the film being "shot" in French.
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Postby Andrew Nguyen » Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:30 pm

This is one of the finest of not the finest Japanese anime show ever. Too bad they don't really produce these types of shows anymore.
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Postby kiryugoji04 » Thu Jan 05, 2012 2:43 pm

I admit, I've never actually seen this... >>
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Postby Andrew Nguyen » Thu Jan 05, 2012 3:05 pm

kiryugoji04 wrote:I admit, I've never actually seen this... >>


I can probably make good odds that if you get a chance to see this, you will like it. But of course I may be wrong.
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Postby MekaGojira3k » Fri Jan 06, 2012 12:08 am

kiryugoji04 wrote:I admit, I've never actually seen this... >>


Go watch, now!
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Postby lhb412 » Fri Aug 02, 2013 12:16 am

All four of the Cowboy Bebop soundtrack albums are now on US iTunes.

... pretty cool.
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Postby Dr Kain » Fri Aug 02, 2013 10:01 am

lhb412 wrote:All four of the Cowboy Bebop soundtrack albums are now on US iTunes.

... pretty cool.


What about MP3 format for who don't buy music on itunes?
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Postby EricDent » Sat Aug 03, 2013 1:54 am

Pretty sure those soundtracks are still out there.
Perhaps even sold on Amazon...

Sure the prices might be a tad steep, but its great music.

Personally since this show is technically out of print (due to the Bandai thing), it would be a boon for any US anime distributor to get it ASAP.
Though hopefully NOT Aniplex of America...sorry but not even Cowboy Bebop is worth the ridiculous prices they set for their releases.
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Re:

Postby kiryugoji04 » Tue Oct 08, 2013 4:05 pm

MekaGojira3k wrote:
kiryugoji04 wrote:I admit, I've never actually seen this... >>


Go watch, now!


Last night we finished watching the series and the movie and, well, it was a'ight. There was a lot of good in the show but it never really managed to bowl me over.
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Re: Cowboy Bebop

Postby Silver Kamen » Tue Oct 08, 2013 4:23 pm

I've never seen it either... guess I'll start watching now. :mrgreen:
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Re: Re:

Postby lhb412 » Tue Oct 08, 2013 6:28 pm

kiryugoji04 wrote:
MekaGojira3k wrote:
kiryugoji04 wrote:I admit, I've never actually seen this... >>


Go watch, now!


Last night we finished watching the series and the movie and, well, it was a'ight. There was a lot of good in the show but it never really managed to bowl me over.



,,, not even... Cowboy Andy?
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Re: Cowboy Bebop

Postby Dr Kain » Wed Oct 09, 2013 1:13 am

Just sold off all of my DVDs today since I won't end up watching the series until the BDs are out (of course, I also haven't watched those DVDs in 6 years)
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Re: Cowboy Bebop

Postby Silver Kamen » Wed Oct 09, 2013 9:17 am

Dr Kain wrote:Just sold off all of my DVDs today since I won't end up watching the series until the BDs are out (of course, I also haven't watched those DVDs in 6 years)


How much did you sell them for?
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Re: Cowboy Bebop

Postby Dr Kain » Mon Oct 21, 2013 2:11 pm

Silver Kamen wrote:
Dr Kain wrote:Just sold off all of my DVDs today since I won't end up watching the series until the BDs are out (of course, I also haven't watched those DVDs in 6 years)


How much did you sell them for?


I got $1 per volume.
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Re: Cowboy Bebop

Postby Silver Kamen » Mon Oct 21, 2013 3:33 pm

Dr Kain wrote:I got $1 per volume.


Damn. That's just... damn. :)
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Re: Re:

Postby lhb412 » Mon Oct 21, 2013 5:23 pm

kiryugoji04 wrote:Last night we finished watching the series and the movie and, well, it was a'ight. There was a lot of good in the show but it never really managed to bowl me over.


The thing that really makes the show stand out for me is that it does a lot of disparate things well. There are funnier anime, there are better dramatic anime - but Cowboy Bebop has crime caper episodes, comedy episodes, science fiction episodes, horror episodes - and each one feels so accomplished and complete unto itself. Episodes often feel more like short films than episodes of a TV show. The characters are rather archetypal, and are efficient in their ability to be slotted into these different genres.

The great style and atmosphere (especially music) strikes me as a kind of binding agent that makes the show feel more like, well, a show, and not an anthology.
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Re: Cowboy Bebop

Postby lhb412 » Fri Dec 04, 2015 9:36 pm

Just got the recent-isn Blu-Ray of the series and I'm loving it all over again.

(special note: while the Blu-Ray benefits the traditional animation of the series, the digital effects were done in standard definition, so don't get mad at your copy for 'not really being HD!' or something like that)

It's really interesting how the series teases a whole lot of worldbuilding backstory and just leaves it on the table. The world of Cowboy Bebop is so immediately familiar because of how it reflects cultural touchstones, but you're occasionally reminded that this vision of the future has gone through a whole lot of tumult since our present - but none of that is too important for the stories at hand. It's just something that rewards attentive viewers. One element of that I really love are the clues that after decades of a society being in a 'Wild West' kind of state things are just now becoming stable and our characters (bounty hunters and gangsters) are becoming outdated. It's the end of an era, and that sort of ties the whole series together.
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Re: Cowboy Bebop

Postby kiryugoji04 » Sun Dec 06, 2015 5:35 pm

See, one of the things I kind of hated about the series was how lazy the world-building felt. Mars is SPACE HONG KONG! Titan is SPACE AFGANISTAN! Venus is SPACE TURKEY! And Callisto is LITERALLY SPACE RUSSIA!
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Re: Cowboy Bebop

Postby Rody » Sun Dec 06, 2015 7:12 pm

I also started watching the show again via my Blu-ray copies, and I'm loving the show even more.
...Which reminds me, I need to get back to it...

As much as I admire world building in fiction, I haven't given Cowboy Bebop's world building as much thought; but maybe that's just indicative of how subtly immersive I find the show to be. 8)
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