|Episodes||201 + 51|
|Genre(s)||Action, Comedy, Parody, Historical, Sci-Fi|
NB: This is a review that has been ported over from the old blog for posterity purposes. The original publish date of this review was 7th April, 2013. The writing style and depth of detail may have changed a lot since this time, and a revisit is always possible.
Before I begin reviewing this in earnest I just wanted to say that this is one of the few anime’s that has had my crying in laughter, twice.
Gin Tama is one of those series that is really challenging to explain to anyone who hasn’t seen it. I usually end up trailing off, trying to explain that there’s a samurai, aliens and it’s all based on the Edo period. This is often followed by people giving me weird looks and occasionally the understanding pat on the back “must be tough to be you buddy.” It’s a bizarre mix of fantasy, scifi and comedy that frequently smashes down the fourth wall.
The story focuses on Gintama (the main character), who’s a lazy, self centered, yorozuya (jack of all trades). He has two sidekicks, the nerdy otaku Shinpachi, who is a samurai in training and the loud, inhumanly strong Kagura, who is an alien from another planet. We follow this trio on their myriad of odd jobs and debacles. The story arcs are strangely compelling and the odd few serious episodes add to the overall effect the series has as an outstanding comedy.
The show is constantly referring back to it’s Manga roots, and Jump background. It feels like the writers know their audience well and they exploit it and I find it rare to be so invested in a comedy but with over 200 episodes, Gintama will not be finished within the week.
This is one of those oddly compelling watches that you just can’t stop eating up. The main director, Shinji Takamatsu has created one of the funniest oddball series in the last decade.