Wednesday, October 28, 2009

:anime: Free/Low-Cost Anime Pick of the Month:: TRIP TREK


Official Sites: Japanese, English
Additional Links: Directory Link, ANN Entry
Video [Free]: English w/ Japanese Subtitles, Japanese w/ Japanese Subtitles

With Halloween coming in the next few days, it seems only appropriate to dedicate this inaugural feature to one anime befitting of the season. TRIP TREK, created by an "experimental" creative group by the name of "Estrella", is an obscure, web-original production by famous studio manglobe (Samurai Champloo, Ergo Proxy) about the off-kilter, darkly-comic tale of a strange little girl in search of her mother. Its style is what one might expect from a Flash-based animation--bold-looking, distinctive, and a little awkward. Being made primarily for online, its production values show, and though its purposeful arthouse-flavored visuals and sensibilities and overall macabre nature might not be everyone's tea (or more timely, hot apple cider), those looking for something to put them in the mood for the season or who either find themselves fancied by black comedies or just something "different" entirely will certainly want to check it out.

TRIP TREK has the peculiar distinction of being produced in English first, then into Japanese later, due most likely to Estrella's objective in creating works for a global audience. American English dub fans won't find anyone familiar in the show, since English-speaking voice actors (VAs) in Japan performed the roles. The result may be as awkward as the animation itself, but it remains a passable and acceptable effort. Both the English (Ep. 1-4) and Japanese (Ep. 1-3, 5) versions were put onto YouTube by producer bb-anime and features subtitles in Japanese (yes, both). And for a little "bonus", be sure to check out the Directory link above.

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