REVIEW: Wolverine Anime DVD

Marvel’s Wolverine Anime is now available on DVD, and the twelve episodes are jam-packed with fast-paced action sequences and incredible animation.

The Wolverine Anime focuses on everyone’s favorite mutant with an adamantium skeleton, and the series never fails to remind us that Logan is virtually indestructible.  Bullet holes?  What bullet holes?  Sword slash?  Never happened.

The story of the anime is based on the comics plotline that began in 1979 and included three titles: X-Man, Uncanny X-Men, and Wolverine.  Wolverine’s love Mariko Yashida is taken away by her father and forced into betrothal with his business associate Hideko.  Wolverine valiantly attempts to save her, even jumping in midair as a hail of bullets tear apart his flesh.  But, as I mentioned, such injuries are mere scratches to the clawed one, though even he couldn’t defy the coordinated assault.

So as one would expect, Wolverine wanders around Tokyo with a chip on his shoulder.  He’s never been the happiest of characters, but he’s forced to cross swords with his former girlfriend’s father and endures a murder attempt from her fiancé, all the while wearing a cool red leather jacket.  His fists are constantly clenched, adamantium claws ready to snikt snikt at the least provocation.

During his journey, he comes across an unexpected ally that’s a mix between Trinity of the Matrix and a Tron character.  She has her own agenda, desiring to avenge the death of her mother and destroy Mariko’s father.  And an appearance by enemy Omega Red further complicates matters.

I loved the episodes.  The battles with samurai swords were epic, and I could tell that a lot of hard work went into this series.  I’ve read a lot of criticism about the series, but honestly, I don’t understand it.

Director Hiroshi Aoyama encourages the skeptical to watch:  “Logan in my show is not exactly the same Logan you see in the original comics. However, the storyline and characters are based on an existing comic. The younger Logan battles his enemies and problems in both Tokyo and Madripoor. He fights off all enemies that stand in his way. Even if you find Logan’s look “too different,” give it a try. Logan is still the Logan you know. Wolverine’s got the Wolverine spirit. Watching him evolve across the series will be very fun. His healing factor and adamantium skeleton are just awesome!”

I love the X-Men and particularly Wolverine, but I’m not a hardcore comic book fan.  So perhaps I didn’t watch it with the same critical eye as others.  I just thought it was pure fun.  And if you like anime and sword fights and Wolverine, maybe this is for you.  But if you’re going to watch it and analyze every frame because Wolverine’s hair doesn’t look like it does in the comic books, then this may not be up your alley.

Also included are three featurettes: The Marvel Anime Universe: Wolverine Reborn, providing insights into the process for creating the series.

The Ferocious Anti-Hero: Wolverine Defined explores the hero’s character

 Wolverine Meets X-Men contains an interview with the creators of the Marvel anime Wolverine and X-Men.