Afro Samurai: Revenge
(S01E01) Afro Samurai is Samuel L. Jackson's latest venture. It's a captivating mini series that's something of an americanized cross between Tarantino violence and high quality anime. Aside from providing his voice for two characters, he's also co/executive producing it.
"Revenge" begins in the past with the death of the boys father at the hands of Justice, a cackling creepy character, over posession of the #1 headband. I had to watch the fight a couple of times, but I still don't know just how Justice defeated #1. (A weaponized eyeball maybe?)
After the credits, the boys face fades into the older face of Afro. We find him surrounded by 20 men, bent on killing him for his #2 headband. The fight scene is enthralling. We don't get every detail, but we get the point that Afro is badass.( I keep flashing back to Pulp fiction - does that sword say the same thing as the wallet?) After Afro literally kicks everyones ass, he walks on and we meet the extra mouthy Ninja Ninja. (Samuel's other character) He helps a bit of exposition - helpful since Afro doesn't say much.
In the saloon we find out just what's up. The story revolves around a pair of ancient headbands. Only the possessor of the #2 headband can challenge #1, who lives like a god. Everyone and anyone can and does challenge #2 for his. When Afro walks in, all the hot heads are in shock. In his quest for lemonade, he takes out the biggest meanest one in the bar with a simple backhand maneuver. Afro scores a bit of handy info from the barmaid and proceeds.
After another action filled battle, we're treated to a bit more plot. He's being followed by some representatives of another group interested in the fate of the headband. In a sort of dark weird preacher fashion, we hear about the empty seven. We find out they're on a mission, and they certainly like their scantily clad ladies. On seeing Afro being injured from his previous battle, one of the watchers takes a shot... with an RPG. The episode ends with a bleeding Afro falling from the cliffs after the rocket explodes.
Afro Samurai is a dark, but excellent looking series. "Revenge" was very compelling to watch - even for a second time. The first fight was a bit weak on showing all the action, but the rest are attention grabbing. Our samurai hero doesn't speak much, but his apparent sidekick 'Ninja Ninja' fills the void. If you like adult oriented animation, check it out - just make sure the kids are in bed first.