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Master Keaton


Genre: Drama
Company: Studio Madhouse
Format: 39 episodes
Dates: 10/6/1998 to 3/29/1999

Taichi Hiraga Keaton is very enigmatic, the son of playful Japanese man and a British woman. His life is a continuous balancing act between his career as an insurance fraud investigator, his passion as an archaeologist and teacher, his past as an SAS survivalist in the Falkland War and his role as a parent of teenage girl.

summary by Soundchazer


Reviewed: 02/15/2005 by
Grade: 85% av-Soundchazer

Highs: Extremely detailed main character; mostly interesting stories

Lows: Mediocre music; lack of strong secondary characters

This is one of those titles I just had to watch; after all, when several Japanese polls for anime and manga place this creation in the top 20 of all time, you just can’t avoid being curious. I was surprised with what I found.

Unlike most other drama anime out there, the main vehicle to introduce us to Taichi Keaton is self-contained stories. This means that we don’t get to know about the main character by seeing his story unfold, but rather by watching him in his every day life and have others discover multiple aspects of his personality and history for us. In a way, it is a similar process as the one found in Azumanga Daioh or Cowboy Bebop, but this anime does it in a more natural and organic way.

The animation is done by Studio Madhouse, which has a reputation for being good and consistent in their craft; this series is no exception. It is not the flashiest anime out there, but it has more to do with the character designs remaining faithful to Urusawa Naoki’s style and the subject at hand than by the lack of care from the producers. In fact, what makes this anime click is that there is little to say about the animation, which speaks of its unobtrusive nature.

While I enjoyed most of the stories, there were some that were a bit tedious and hard to follow. Maybe this was because the subject was not appealing to me, or I couldn’t connect with the characters in the story. It is in fact the lack of other strong characters which may be Master Keaton‘s biggest flaw. If you are not interested in Keaton, there will be little to save this anime for you.

By the time you are done watching Master Keaton, you can’t help but feel a bit saddened. This is such an incredibly detailed character that it almost feels like you are about to lose a friend.


Master Keaton can be downloaded legally in the United States HERE.


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