What if your favorite space operas and sci-fi adventures were melded together in a technicolor animated series? Well, you would have Space Dandy. Following the adventures of an alien hunter, this Japanese anime series premiered for the first time in the United States on Adult Swim’s Toonami. It premiered in Japan the next day. The English version is licensed by FUNimation Entertainment.
When the name of famed anime director Shinichiro Watanabe is invoked, fans sit up and listen. Watanabe has brought anime fans many cult series, such as Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo. His eclectic blends of different genres make for memorable, long-lasting experiences. Space Dandy melds an amazing musical score with its 1970/80s style designs, bright colors, and comedic situations. The lead character, Dandy, is a womanizing, intergalactic alien bounty hunter who travels around in a near-obsolete space ship with a robot companion named QT (who’s in serious need of an upgrade) and a perverted, cat-like alien named Meow (only named so because they can’t pronounce his real name.).
This anime does not take itself seriously – at all. The majority of the first episode takes place in a restaurant called Boobies, an intergalactic version of Hooters. The first conversation of Dandy’s that we hear is about how he prefers a woman’s ass to her boobies. Out of context, it sounds terribly offensive. However, it’s rather funny. The episode was filled with offensive humor and ridiculous situations that led to quite a few laughs. This show doesn’t take itself seriously, so viewers shouldn’t either.
One criticism I have would be not understanding where this anime could go. Following Dandy along on his adventures will be interesting, for the most part, but there has to be some weight to the story beyond the comedy. However, it’s far too soon to tell. Judging by the first episode, there are many surprises and antics in store for viewers.
Space Dandy makes fun of itself, and its genres, while paying homage to classic science fiction. It airs on Adult Swim on Saturday at 11:30 PM.