It was just about 10 years ago when I was first introduced to Ninja Squirrel and the entire concept itself sounded just so surreal and odd at first but after you get to know him a bit more I’m sure you’ll fall in love too! And really who knew that squirrels could be so deviant and stealth~like to begin with? On the surface they’re these most cute little critters who seem to be much more suited as plushys come to life rather than blade and star wielding creatures of the dark but I guess if turtles can become ninjas then why not a squirrel as well……? And there’s even enough of a fan base and craze for there to be merchandising as well where you can show your love of the Ninja Squirrel by donning sweet original t~shirt designs and caps too~!
I didn’t log into WP today to tell you that (。ーωー。)♪
It was about 10 years ago that a friend asked me one day if I had ever watched an anime movie called “Ninja Scroll” however what I thought I heard him ask was if ‘….I had ever watched “Ninja Squirrel?” So I was like e~h that sounds kind of funny and it must be cute♥! I will never forget his immediate expression which was sort of like…..(・_・)。Or really it was much more like…..(・c_・;)？Yep, he had suddenly turned into one of the Peanuts kid’s parents saying things like ‘wong~wong~wooong’ :P. Um I think it’s the nose ・c_・．．．no but anyway he basically gave me the ‘are you nuts?’ look and then when I began backing up squirrels everywhere stating how appearance wise they’re most cute looking (i hear some attack :O??) it became apparently clear that ‘scrolls’ and ‘squirrels’ are not only not the same thing but they’re basically worlds apart I hear (。ーωー。)笑 ！Then after a bit of me telling him not to mumble so much and he telling me to check for wax in my ears (;゜□゜)！！！it all got sorted out and I then watched the movie “Ninja Scroll” =).
I think it’s fair to say that well done anime can be timeless and although “Ninja Scroll” was originally released way back in 1993 it still stands as a sort of landmark anime in its own right showing then how wickedly cool animation being coupled with an in depth story makes for a memorable experience you’d want to share with others and not just with your family, friends and distant relatives….but even with complete strangers on the street っo(*´∀｀)o!
Warning: spoilers ahead! (also contains mature subject matter)
1. Jubei♥. While he’s written as a ninja he has like a master~less ronin type of thing going on and his character shows a lot of selflessness and caring for others and when you’re drawn this cool what’s not to love? Plus he’s tough as nails and doesn’t sleep around =).
2. The plot. One that reaches deep into the past involving government peril, the house of Toyotomi and a fight to uncover the truth while the deadly 8 Devils of Kumon seek to overthrow all that is right with an aura of invincibility.
3. Mujuro Utsutsu. He brought really one of the coolest scenes to the movie with a battle to the death deep into a bamboo forest…can’t be cooler than that right?! It gets better though as he’s a most skilled blind swordsman very much like Zatoichi….only I don’t think he parties, isn’t much of a prankster and definitely doesn’t gamble so maybe only the blade and blindness does he have in common :P. And talk about a chance meeting from earlier then meaning so much as Jubei owes Kagero!
~Mujuro Utsutsu vs. Jubei (clip)~
4. Kagero. She’s so much one of the most intriguing characters in the movie and just her name evokes Japanese folklore as the Kagero character has also appeared in numerous other writings where most recently I’ve seen “her” in the epic and amazing “Shinobi~Heart Under Blade~.” And the very being of Kagero is one of a tortured and conflicted soul where if she’s written as a lord’s aid her role would be one of a servant to taste for poison keeping the lord safe but at the same time with her poisonous body it’s a double edged fate, as while it keeps her immune to death through toxins and allows her to serve it also keeps her from being a woman in the very sense that she can never be with a man she loves as it wouldn’t even take sex as with a kiss alone he’d be led into sure death =(.
5. The look. An essential to any good story are the accompanying scenery and how effective they are and here the sights and mystic~like aura of old Japan keep you even more engaged and drawn into the storyline.
6. Dakuan. If he were yellowish they could have also named him “Takuan” =D…..and through his steady narration the heart of the story unfolds with wonderful pacing~. Dakuan is a most cunning character and while he may not be the most honest he more than makes up for that with his wise~ways and yep! when he’s mimicking plant life he reminds me so much of another little one called Yoda and boy they’re also both most quick moving like the wind which seems to be another aspect of being great!
7. Yurimaru. The evil Lord Gemma’s lead Devil, Yurimaru always shows calm and poise no matter what the situation while killing effortlessly through a single thread. While he’s not icky looking he’s definitely the most frightening I think as he won’t hesitate to take out his very own if things aren’t going well but really what intrigues me most about Yurimaru is……
…..how he and Lord Gemma communicate not unlike how children would tie a string between two cups and play make~believe~telephone with it :P! I mean there’s sadly =( no cups being used (because that would have been “Dragon Half” funny…(^q^)!) but still it’s very much the same っo(*´∀｀)o!
8. Tessai. Stone body. Thinks he’s invincible. Owns a double sided sword thingy which acts like a boomerang and takes part in perhaps the coolest fight in all the movie…..well next to Mujuro Utsutsu that is!
~Tessai vs. Jubei (clip)~
9. The Jubei x Kagero relationship. Both are proud ninja but I’d say that Kagero really wants to sleep* with him and if only her body’s poison wouldn’t kill him instantly which I’m thinking would be like him coming* and going at the same time (;゜□゜)！！！And although that would totally alleviate the whole after sex* awkward~we’ve moved out of the friend zone forever thing that some face that would so not be good!!….and with cuddling in our DNA a limp man would not do either…(u_u*). Seriously though the dynamics of their relationship as it changes throughout the movie is most touching to watch and really if you think about it so much of everything between them is all due to the sneeky~ness of Dakuan. He ingeniously gets Jubei to join and help him hunt the 8 Devils of Kumon by poisoning him all the while knowing that his promise of an antidote later will be from Jubei’s sleeping* with Kagero who’d then remove his poison saving his life :O.
Talk about being shocked by the revelation of that “antidote!” Still despite her reaction here I’m firmly sticking with the belief that Kagero truly wants to sleep* with Jubei regardless of poison/her body being the antidote or not :P.
Um, you just don’t want to be the one to ask Jubei if he’s slept with you~know~who……because then you know that he’ll have to break off his abstinence bet against Josh Hartnett and lose to him which I think would drive him bonkers xD!
10. Benisato. The hypnotic serpent woman at first resembles a yakuza and she seems to want to get naked* as much as possible (I heard she asked the writers for less clothes still :O) and she is amazingly and hypnotically drawn I must say! Spine tingling~creepy~good!
….now if only she and Yurimaru could just get along xD.
11. Shijima. He may be the most shadowy and “ninja~like” here as his abilities are shrouded in stealth and misdirection and then you have that pin~point deadly claw of his!
12. Still Mushizo is the yuckiest without equal (゜Д゜;)！！And that hump and hunch~like stance isn’t from him carrying rice in burlap bags since he was 5…….(*>ω<)。His back later reveals a deadly hive of wasps =(!
13. Some anime sure have a way of creating extravagant means for what could have been much more “normal” lol xD! Like here for instance Kagero could have just as easily been hypnotized by Shijima without the need for his going all x~rated on her (;゜□゜)！！！
14. And speaking of sex* I have to say that this was the first and only time that I’ve witnessed animated feudal~Japan sex* and this popped up quite early in the movie and although it was brief for a while there I was thinking omG I’m watching animated porn (・д・`*)！！
15. No rating. The graphic realism throughout and there’s an abundance of it to go around and really all of the battle scenes are executed with a cutting edge of creativity never shying away from what I imagine would actually be an “R” rating if there were one although does not having a rating exceed an “R” I wonder? In any case there’s a lot of jaw~dropping animation however none of it ever seems over indulgent or gratuitous~.