Samurai Champloo

I know that in the previous post I talked about how I fell back in love with games but I also discovered something that made me love anime all over again. And that something was Samurai Champloo.

It’s hard for me to explain what made me love Samurai Champloo. All I know is that I adore the opening Battlecry for its blend of hip hop aesthetic and sound with traditional Japanese illustration. I also love the characters and the way the stories go from over the top to completely insane, to incredibly emotional.

The reason I wanted to talk about Samurai Champloo is that I wanted to take influence from the way the show uses traditional Japanese imagery and setting with modern inserts, i.e. the way it references hip hop records. I also wanted to mention it because this is one of my key influences and interests.

There’s something about anime that just captures my imagination more than most visual media. I think it’s because animation can achieve things that can’t be done with live action in way that just feels natural. That’s not to say I don’t enjoy other types of media and I do watch things other than anime and cartoons, but there’s something about them that hits the right notes with me and engages me far more than other things. There’s certain things that just wouldn’t work in any other medium and I think that Samurai Champloo is one of them.

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These are the three main characters Mugen (left), Jin (middle) and Fu (right). The bold lines and high contrast shadows easily relate the aesthetic to the hip hop undertones and make the characters seem very dynamic and make them stand out against the background which takes on a far more traditional look.
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Jin’s introduction in the opening credits.
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The three main characters who are sometimes referred to as ‘the hungry three’ due to never having enough money for food.
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Some artwork of the trio that appears on one of the DVDs.
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