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Trigun Complete Collection PDF Print E-mail
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R2 DVD Reviews
Tuesday, 26 October 2010 00:00
TrigunTrigun is one of those "gateway" series that created legions of anime fans when it was first released. That was back in the late 90's, though, and to be honest it's been re-released so many times - even in the UK - that you can't help but think people might be tiring of it a little. A few years on from its first appearance, then, can it still draw new fans to the addiction that is anime..?

The setting for Trigun is a desert planet in the depths of the galaxy, where some 70 years earlier the colony ships of Project SEEDS had crash-landed, leaving the survivors to scrape for survival under two suns and with very little in the way of food or water on the surface. The result is a world that seems a lot like the old American west - and in this world, Vash the Stampede (aka the Humanoid Typhoon, and considered an "Act of God" for insurance purposes) wanders alone. Or he did, until insurance reps Meryl Stryfe and Milly Thompson caught up with him, their assignment being to make sure Vash stays far enough away from trouble to keep their employers from having to pay out any more claims. With the gang of outlaws known as the Gung-Ho Guns on his trail, though, and with preacher turned lone gun Nicholas Wolfwood by his side, keeping Vash out of trouble isn't easy - even though Vash has an almost religious desire to do no harm, destruction seems to follow him wherever he goes.

Vash the StampedeBit-part villains

WolfwoodThe insurance girls

That's in no small part thanks to his twin brother, Knives - the evil twin of this particular pair, and a man with as much of a desire to see humanity destroyed as Vash has to save it. That they're both survivors of the fleet's disaster should tell you they're no normal people, and as the series progresses there's more and more revealed about their past and how they came to be on opposite ends of the idealogical scale, but it's safe to say that they both harbour huge grudges against the other, and certainly from Knives' point of view, he'll pay any price to make Vash suffer - but all of this is reserved for the second half of the series.

The series starts off simply enough - it's light, funny, and the episodes have a very stand-alone feel to them, but all that's just to lull you in to a false sense of security. As the series progresses, things get darker and more serious in tone, until a set of flashback episodes finally fill in the details of what happened on the Project SEEDS ships when they arrived at this desolate planet. From there, the story becomes something of a living hell for Vash, as he tries to deal with Knives without taking any human life in the process - something that's far from simple.

LegatoYoung Knives

PlantShowdown

Knives is as about as unlikeable a character as you could hope to meet, even in his younger, more innocent days - it's his own inability to understand human nature and to see the good with the bad that leads him to do what he does and sets him against Vash. I suppose every series needs a villain, although you can't help but wonder how he would have turned out if he'd just been named Primrose instead, or something equally non-violent. Go figure. As villains go, though, he plays the role nicely and acts as a good foil to Vash - not surprising as they're really just polar opposites of each other, with the ability to just about cancel out each others abilities. He's not the only villain of the piece, either, as before Knives makes his appearance his chief underling Legato fills to role almost equally well, being yet another man with no visible trace of humanity to him.

I've rewatched Trigun several times over the years, and I can safely say that it's beginning to look its age - current digital animation techniques tend to produce shows with a lot more gloss and a much more polished feel - but it's equally true that the show's story and style are holding up quite well. I had complained while MVM were releasing the individual discs that I would have liked to have seen the show released at a lower price point, and this set gives me my wish. Trigun is something of a classic, and at this pricepoint it's very difficult to turn down - it may not look the part anymore, but under the surface there's a real classic of a story if you can overlook the lack of eyecandy. Well worth picking up.

For full episode summaries and screenshots, check out the reviews of the individual releases:
» Volume 1: The $$60,000,000,000 Man
» Volume 2: Lost Past
» Volume 3: Wolfwood
» Volume 4: Gung-Ho Guns
» Volume 5: Angel Arms
» Volume 6: Project Seeds
» Volume 7: Puppet Master
» Volume 8: High Noon

Rating - ****

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