Well, Halloween is…..well, it’s getting pretty close like a week from now or something and I noticed I haven’t did my annual Halloween anime review for the site (well, I did one on Tokyo Ghoul but that’s on Another Castle….which you can read by the way) and I found this overlooked title while researching what show to review and I found something interesting from this one and that is that it’s made by Yoshiaki Kawajiri, the director of anime movies like Demon City Shinjuku, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust, Running Man (not the Schwarzenegger movie, the one part of Neo-Tokyo) The Animatrix (segments Program and written World Record) and of course, his most notable movie Ninja Scroll. He is also known more for anime in its heyday during the 80s-90s boom of ultraviolent anime OVAs where there is a lot of blood, sex, violence, anything our inner teenagers wanted in something like this.
For centuries, a secret peace treaty has existed between Earth and The Black World, a parallel dimension populated by shape-changers possessing awesome supernatural powers. But now, that pact is up for renewal and a militant faction from the Black World plans to do everything in their power to stop the treaty from being signed. The fate of the world now rests in the ability of a pair of special agents, one a human, the other a shape-changer from the distaff dimension, to make sure things go according to plan.
Story wise, you got the whole keeping the balance of peace between Earth and the Black World and it’s up between two special agents with one being human and the other a shape-changer and….what I’m saying is the story (and characters at that) isn’t really that mind-blowing out of a plot although that isn’t to be expected out of an approximately 90 minute movie but is it a bad story per se? No, not really. It was a basic standard during the late 80s-90s and yet a lot of strange and weird things happening kept us watching and since this is a horror neo-noir title…..
Man, there are things to be creeped out of….mostly the main thing is a woman WHO IS ACTUALLY SOME SPIDERWOMAN who shoots web or something out of her vagina. No, I’m not kidding. That actually happens here. Anyway, the creepy/gorey factor in here is present and accounted for but I never felt it to be over-the-top gorey or bloody but when it comes to body horror, they got that covered well especially most of the demons got weird shit coming out of them.
It comes to no surprise that the art style and animation is dated, which is no contest since this was released in 1987 in Japan and this was the norm of the anime style and it fits with most vintage MADHOUSE shows or movies….mostly like Ninja Scroll.
Oh, did I mention sex is involved here? Nudity too? Yeah, thar be some fucking in here!! It’s tame here just so you’ll know. (See Ninja Scroll.)
Music isn’t really a noticeable feature in here as most of it seemed forgetful and not really something you recall in here. Oh, and there’s 2 English dubs of this: one made by Streamline Pictures in America and the Manga UK dub for the UK. I watched the Streamline version and well…..it’s a 90s anime dub meaning this was the standard back then. No performance really caught my attention but it was a ‘meh’ dub.
FINAL VERDICT: Wicked City is your schlocky 80s-90s anime OVA that’s mostly small on story and characters have but knows the viewer doesn’t really care for that. For the body horror and demon designs, that is where they shine at among the few things they have. This is more of something you can watch at Halloween among other anime similar to this.
And with that said, the city has the grade of
6/10 – OKAY.
WICKED CITY has been available on DVD via STREAMLINE PICTURES but then their rights got expired, got to URBAN VISION and that expired, too. Recently, the movie has been rescued by DISCOTEK MEDIA.
This has been MAK2.0 aka The Blue Hybrid, and all of you to have a HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!
WICKED CITY – animated by MADHOUSE / licensed by DISCOTEK MEDIA