Fuuto Tantei ep 1 & 2: Return of the two-in-one detectives

The first proper anime adaptation for the legendary Tokusatsu franchise Kamen Rider is here! The Kamen Rider W sequel Fuuto Tantei was a manga that took place after the events of the tv live-action series have been made into an anime by studio KAI. Fans of the masked riders are super excited for the past year with all the gorgeous visuals and this being the first KR animation. As a Toku series, special effects can be added to live-action scene, for anime, the effects have to be drawn by hand or rendered with CG, and we are very excited to see what they will do about it.

The series started off with a good start, adapting the main points of the manga very faithfully, albeit sped up some events to suit the screen time. The series assume you already know about the hardboiled half-and-half hero and the basic concept of the series such as Dopant, Gaia Memories and such. It would be even better if you’ve already watched the series as you’ll see many familiar faces in the original toku series. The pacing of the series is pretty okay, not too fast, not too slow, as they take their time establishing the main characters as well as the core story, and save the nerdgasm action all the way until the end of episode 2. They really take their time to lead up to the most epic henshin scene ever.

Character-wise, they are pretty much just animated version of the Toku series, but a bit older. Shotaro – on one hand – looks much more mature and “hard-boiled” (of course that only applies to his looks lol). His personality is very silly most of the time, and stubborn too, but when the situation calls for it, we get the badass detective that will do anything to protect everyone. Philip is pretty much the same as in the series, and Akiko is still as hilarious as ever. If the series keep up this pace, Terui will also appear and he will be quite stoic and confident like in the manga. We will wait and see.

The main catch of the anime is of course, none other than the mysterious heroine Tokime. A manga-original character, Tokime appear in the anime with a bewitching beauty. Her complexion is mysterious and ghostly – appropriate for the name “witch”. The manga can portray her personality, but it can’t express her elusive behavior that put a spell on Shotaro’s heart. Even though the anime isn’t “uncensored” like the manga, they did an astounding job of conveying Tokime’s character.

For animation, the team did very well for the character with traditional 2D animation. There are some environmental scene and objects rendered in 3D that can be a bit awkward when blending with the 2D character, but overall not too bad. The Hardboileder and Revoglarry are both 3D and all the riding/driving scenes are very CGI-heavy, but they are also high-speed and don’t require a lot of human movement so the scenes look very fine. From the OP, the fighting part will be 2D hand-drawn so we can expect some amazing fights ahead.

The highlight in the first two episode is no doubt the henshin scene. The sound effects, the pair’s demeanor, the animation, the OSTs – everything is HARD-BOILED and PERFECT! It literally send chills down my spine and brought back a lot of memories (pun intended) of the half-and-half rider we saw more than 10 years ago. The future of Kamen Rider anime is looking really bright if they keep up this quality!

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