Reviews: One Punch Man

10 years ago ...

A decade ago, OPM would have just been a good anime. Its only in the present time that OPM could have the success it possesses now.

The reason is the shounen genre.

A decade ago <approximately.> The audience still was enamored with anime like bleach, naruto etc... The shounen genre was still in its prime and people still watched shounen anime and similar genres and enjoyed it.

Fast forward to 2015 and the shounen genre has run its course. Mostly because characterization and story has given way to flashy powers and shounen cliches.

Now enter an anime which inverts these cliches, parodying them and pointing out the nonsensical nature of multiple forms, energy beams and heroic last winds pulled out from farts.

Couple that with good characters, a simple yet strong story, and genuinely interesting powers and motivations. And you get One Punch Man's overwhelming success currently.

The issue now is whether this would last ...

One Punch Anime (Ep. 1-9)

Wow! I don't think I've ever become so obsessed with an anime so quickly. I've caught up on the first nine episodes; however, I haven't seen any of the manga or webcomic.

The best part about the show is Saitama, the character suffering from Victory Is Boring due to his insane strength: literally any villain can be beaten with one punch. He's droll, lazy, hilarious, and seriously awesome when he needs to be. His mundane BerserkButtons are hit hard and often, so it really is fantastic seeing him utilize his incredible power over such a "minor" insult. And, of course, against the numerous villains. The other characters are great too, specifically Sonic (not that one) and Geros.

Some drawbacks I see with the show are more YMMV than anything. It can get gory and squicky at times, so watch your step. Plus, there's not much fanservice, but when there is, it's a little extreme. Drinking game: count the naked people. Oh, not to mention a slow-motion close up of someone getting punched in their soft spot. (Is immediately made up for by a quick cut to a happy, smiling TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES screen. Not making that up.)

So far, my favorite episode is the most recent one, episode 9. The villain in this and the last episode is so despicable, beating so many likable heroes (and Sonic) into the ground, that you're counting the seconds until Saitama unleashes his punch. That's the great thing about this anime; in most shows, unless they're specifically Anyone Can Die, you know in the back of your mind that the hero will will at the end of the episode, no matter how evil the villain or how epic the fight scene. This is just a given in One Punch Man, so all the suspense comes from seeing when lazy Saitama will be pushed to the breaking point, and how much destruction the villain will cause in the meantime.

All in all, an excellent, unique, and funny deconstruction, but trace amounts of Squick advise you to watch with caution.

TL;DR 9/10.

Crazy? Awesome? Crazy Awesome? D. All of the above

One Punch Man is a series about a man named Saitama who can defeat any opponent with a single blow. Sounds boring right? Wrong.

What makes this series so good is less the titular One Punch Man himself and more the characters surrounding him. This series is chock full of memorable heroes and villains, each with their own unique quirks, appearance and powers. This works in that since our main character is so overpowered, we get to see some pretty well drawn battles with these characters before Saitama comes and ends it, keeping the series action packed.

Another high point to the series is the artwork. The art is crisp and clear, with it's biggest point being the scale. The drawings give you a very clear idea on how big something is compared to the other characters. The jokes in the series are also really top notch, as Saitama's immense strength and invincibility are used just as often for laughs as they are for awesomeness.

Overall, the series is a really fun read. It may sound like it'll be bad, with thoughts of "Come on, a guy winning with one punch? Where's the drama, where's the action?" And honestly, that's what I thought as well. But after sitting down and reading a few chapters, I found myself enjoying the characters, jokes, action, and especially the wonderful artwork. Despite it's demographic being Seinen, if you love typical Shonen stuff like Toriko, One Piece or Ruroni Kenshin, this is a manga that will feel right at home for you.
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