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Review: Irresponsible Captan Tylor

The initial review for this series was insufficient. It appears below.

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Initially I really wasn’t interested in this show, but after a few episodes I discovered that
I couldn’t stop watching it. It’s about Justin Ueki Tylor, a man with all the luck in the
universe, who joins the military, shakes things up.

Genre: military humor
emotion: irresponsible!

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This series has a whole lot to count against it. The science is laughable in this ‘science’ fiction; the art is unremarkable; the military is pathetic; when presented with the choice between realism and sensationalism, this show always chooses the latter. However, I count this as one of the better anime series I’ve yet seen. In short, this show serves as a perfect example of why none of the metrics that I typically use to judge a show weigh as heavily as one in particular: this show tells a good story. The story itself is original and compelling, and that simple fact outweighs all the problems I have with the way that it is presented.

World War II, from the Japanese perspective, is taught as something that happened to Japan. There is very little focus on the invasions in China or the bombing of Pearl Harbor; instead, it was a tragedy in which the imperialist west ended up fighting this small island nation somehow. Thus, the use of atomic weaponry and the utter ruthlessness with which the war in the Pacific Theatre was generally fought is seen not as justifiable retaliation, but as overkill which would be war crimes if there was justice in the world.

This series opens with the top brass of humanity arguing about whether or not to go to war against the Raalgon, a species whose relations with humanity are tense. The Raalgon emperor has just died, so one person is arguing that with the current balance of forces, humanity could destroy the Raalgons if they strike quickly during the transfer of power. Another dissents, claiming that the superior manufacturing base of the Raalgon would turn the tide of the war in about a year. It soon turns out to be an academic concern; the Raalgon declar war on humanity because it looks like their emperor was assassinated by humans. It later turns out that humanity was framed, but the only people who know that are the ones who framed the humans while jockeying for internal power within the Raalgon empire.

Into this obvious historical parallel steps a man who the universe loves. He lives according to a simple plan: doing whatever seems best at the moment, without worrying about the consequences. This works out for him because (metaphorically) his guardian angel is a superhero; things just work for him which shouldn’t, according to the laws of probability and logic. He joins the military on a whim, and ends up being confused for a genius by just about everybody because despite his unconventional and non-military methods, he accomplishes things which nobody else would even dare attempt.

This story is worth watching because it is the only one I have ever seen which so closely walks the line between improbability and impossibility. This story is worth watching for its parallels to WWII, if you’re interested in that. This story is worth watching because despite all its all its failures and flaws, its underpinnings are too strong to ignore.

Genre: comedy
Emotion: lucky
BTFS: .88

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