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Anime / Wicked City

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Demonic creatures coming from a parallel dimension are constantly trying to get into the human world. It's actually a phenomenon dating back many decades, hence why a special undercover police/military group has been created to deal with it: the Black Guard. Renzaburō Taki is a Japanese member of this task force, as well as one of the most badass.

Very recently, the leaders of both worlds have been working on getting a peace treaty signed. Since it needs to be ratified in our world, Taki is chosen to keep an eye on the negotiations, and so is Makie, a beautiful Action Girl coming from the demon world. However, not everyone is keen on having demons and humans living in peace...

Wicked City (妖獣都市 Yōjū Toshi) is an attack on the senses. It is an anime movie adaptation of the Black Guard, the first novel of Hideyuki Kikuchi's Wicked City horror series, directed by his long time friend Yoshiaki Kawajiri (Ninja Scroll, Cyber City Oedo 808) in The '80s. It was later remade into a Hong-Kong live-action movie by Yuen Woo-Ping in The '90s.

It's not for the faint of heart.

This anime provides examples of...

  • Action Girl: Makie. Although she is repeatedly overpowered and molested throughout the film, the female Black Guard actually owns the biggest part of the action: she makes her introduction saving Taki's life, fights back against Jin mostly by herself, destroys the blob woman and the tentacle demon on her own, and at the end, finishes off the Big Bad with her newfound motherly powers.
  • Adaptational Species Change: The original implies Taki and Makie were both genetically created to be compatible. The American and Spanish dubs, which contain some minor changes in the script, state they were selected, not created, being simply the only compatible human and Dark World citizen duo they could find.
  • Always Save the Girl: Why Taki is dismissed from the Black Guard nearly an hour into the picture, according to its president, who appears genuinely upset that Taki's stellar career had to end the way it did.
    Black Guard President: Taki, I'm very, very disappointed in you. And, in spite of that, you're one of the best Black Guards I've ever seen. But you're too goddamn romantic! Do you understand what I'm saying?! That alone is your one fatal flaw.
  • Ambiguously Brown: Renzaburou is very tanned for a Japanese guy. His dark skin makes a nice contrast with Makie's pale skin and dark hair.
  • Ambiguously Human: The novel series describes Mayart as a powerful Italian wizard and psychic, but never states he's anything other than a supernaturally powered human. In the American and Spanish dubs, he even states himself to be human just like Taki. However, his small physique, pointy ears, horn-like head protrusions and superhuman physical skills point more towards a Dark World citizen himself or some other kind of inhuman creature. The movie never really clarifies it, as he's definitely a person with some secrets, but it's notable that his profile picture at the beginning of the movie shows him clad in a classical vampire Ominous Opera Cape.
  • An Arm and a Leg:
    • Hodgkins loses an arm to Jin's psychic screams. However, he then reveals he already lost that arm and it is an artificial prosthesis.
    • Shadow suffers this literally after getting his left arm blown off by Taki with a gunshot and ripping off his own right leg to escape Mayart's clutches.
  • Animation Bump: Especially during action scenes, although the entire film is consistently well-animated.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: Taki disposes of Mr. Shadow in their first fight by shooting at his mouth, the only part of his anatomy which is not covered in stone.
  • Badass Normal: Renzaburou has no supernatural powers, but gets by thanks to his athleticism, quick wits and big gun.
  • Bald of Evil: Downplayed in both senses. Mayart lacks hair on top and is an extremely unpleasant gentleman, though not evil.
  • Battle Couple: Makie and Renzaburou become one of these by the end. Just as planned by Giuseppe.
  • Big Good: Giuseppe Mayart is a big name on the heroes' side and an instrumental piece of the peace accords, but he subverts it by being an annoying, useless VIP who is suicidally dismissive of the terrorists' danger and only gets the agents in trouble. Then subverts it again by being an impressively powerful psychic who was manipulating events right and left.
  • Bigger Is Better in Bed: The soapland girl is admired by the size of Mayart's member, but we luckily don't get to see if she is right or just talking sweet to a patron.
  • Blade Below the Shoulder: Mr. Shadow can extend metallic-looking spikes from his elbows.
  • Blob Monster: The soapland girl is actually a plastic blob-like demon, which enables her to absorb people into her body.
  • Blown Across the Room: Reconstruction with the Hand Cannon. It actually has enough recoil to justify the impact, and Taki has to brace himself against a wall to fire it.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: Shadow is a son of a bitch, as Taki put it, and proud of it.
  • Casting a Shadow: The appropriately named Shadow sucks Mayart into a pocket dimension in his shadow, where he can freely attack him without worrying about comebacks.
  • Child of Two Worlds: Taki (human) and Makie (demon) were intentionally paired up in hopes of conceiving a child that would fulfill the terms of a peace treaty. That the conception of said child turned Makie into a Pregnant Badass was a bonus.
  • Clothing Damage: When the tentacle monster gets ahold of Makie, it shreds her clothing to the point where one of her breasts is exposed. By the time it takes her to the subway to be made a Sex Slave, her clothing is completely torn away, leaving her completely nude.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Mayart's status as a powerful sorcerer and psychic seems to be an Informed Ability until he unveils it.
  • Devour the Dragon: Mr. Shadow liquefies and uses his fallen mooks to create a concrete-like armor for himself.
  • Dirty Old Man: Giuseppe, to an extreme and almost perversely comical degree. His insistence in going partying to soaplands and clubs in midst of their mission is a Running Gag. The demons capitalize on this by using a beautiful demonic High-Class Call Girl to try killing him. They almost succeed... with a catch.
  • Disappointed in You: When firing Taki for ignoring his orders, the Black Guard President gives a harsh speech that uses this trope hard, particularly upset that Taki's stellar career with the Black Guard had to end like this. Because Taki felt that he did what he had to do to save Makie, he doesn’t care much.
  • Disney Death: Mayart is apparently killed by Shadow's tentacles in his pocket dimension, but he later peeks out of it and attacks again.
  • Eldritch Abomination / Humanoid Abomination: Pretty much all the demons have this vibe; even those who stay human in appearance are very clearly not.
  • Fan Disservice: This movie has a lot of sexual stuff, and a lot of it gets pretty messed up. Renzaburou's one-night stand? She turns out to be a spider woman who tries to kill him by eating him with her mouth that was once her vagina right after they go at it. The High-Class Call Girl that Giuseppe fondles in a soapland? Another demon woman, who almost kills him by absorbing him into her through her breasts. The times we get to see Renzaburou's beautiful and badass partner Makie naked? First fingerbanged by a guy who's holding her down against her will. Then a giant tentacle demon orally rapes her after exploding her clothes off. Then some gang rape. Then the gang rape again. And it goes on and on...
  • Femme Fatale:
    • Makie fits the archetype, being a sultry, morally ambiguous woman in black, though revealed to be not a villainous one despite Taki's initial distrust.
    • Mr. Shadow's moll is another example, if less developed, with psychic seductive abilities to boot.
  • Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex: Makie and Renzaburou, after he rescues her from the other demons and they're both ambushed by the Spider Woman in her last fight.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: Makie and Renzaburou are the parents of the first one, according to Giuseppe. Said child will be known as the living proof that humans and demons can co-exist in peace.
  • Hand Cannon: Taki's primary weapon, a revolver that's average sized but with a ridiculously large modification from what can be seen, is described as a large compensator (for all the good it does him). The resulting force from every shot in the entire film throws him into walls, and unlike some anime the shots always have devastating results. Judging from one shot of him reloading it, it seems to be loaded with .454 Casull which might explain the recoil and damage.
  • Headlock of Dominance: In his comeback against Shadow, Mayart puts him in a rear naked choke and summons all his lightning on him. The baddie tries to counter it by stabbing Mayart with back spikes, but it fails and only gets him obliterated... temporally.
  • Healing Factor:
    • Dark World citizens have one, which is probably which allows Makie to survive all the terrible things she is put through.
    • Although he is supposedly human, Mayart also survives to all kinds of grievous damage in the fight against Shadow.
  • Healing Hands: Makie can generate a blue glow from her hands that can heal physical injuries and restore lost Life Energy.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: An apparent but non-lethal variation. While being mouth-raped by the demon parasite, Makie manages to send all her psychic energy out of her body to break the spatial barrier in which they are all trapped and tells them to go without her. The energy also summons lightning which kills the demon.
  • Heroic Seductress: It is implied Makie allows Jin to strip and molest her before capitalizing on one of his moments of goading to trap him with her hair tentacles. Taki and his Hand Cannon end the job.
  • Honey Trap: Two of the male heroes have a high libido. There's no way this could possibly pose a problem. Cue Spider Woman and the High-Class Call Girl.
  • Hot as Hell: All the dark world citizens, both male and female, heroic and villainous, use sexuality as a weapon.
  • Insult Backfire: Saith Taki to Mr. Shadow: "You son of a bitch." Saith Mr. Shadow to Taki: "Why, thank you."
  • Kill and Replace: Subverted. A demonic spider woman apparently kills the woman that Taki has been trying to seduce for the last three months. She takes the woman's form (and seemingly her clothes and lipstick as well) and invites him over to her place so she can obtain his sperm. However, she later admits that she just rendered the victim unconscious instead of killing her.
  • Kung-Fu Wizard: Downplayed, though technically true. Although initially looking like a Squishy Wizard, Mayart is superhumanly athletic and once puts an enemy in a very professional-looking rear naked choke, implying some hand-to-hand knowledge.
  • Lovecraftian Superpower: Most demonic powers are like this. With good reason.
  • Lovecraft Lite: Kikuchi's trademark.
  • Made of Iron: Mayart is apparently human, yet he has a Healing Factor that probably surpasses those of Makie and the Dark World citizens. He is stabbed with countless tentacles and bone spikes by Shadow and appears just fine right after. This is never explained, although it is probably due to being an impressive wizard and psychic.
  • Made of Plasticine: Some of the demon mooks, judging for how Taki's fist goes through the head of one of them.
  • Mind over Matter: Mayart's power, with a touch of Shock and Awe.
  • Miniature Senior Citizen: Mayart's height is roughly half of a regular character of the film, including women, yet his body proportions are not dwarfish.
  • Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: Mayart is referred as "Dr." in the Spanish dub.
  • Noblewoman's Laugh: After the female spider Dark World radical wraps up Taki and Makie in her webbing, she uses this laugh as she's cutting them with her claws.
  • No Name Given: Many of the characters, among them the spider woman, the soapland girl and Shadow's illusionist. The English dub gives the hotel chairman the name of Hodgkins, but he goes similarly unnamed in the novel.
  • Now That's Using Your Teeth!: Jin stops Hodgkins's chained knife by trapping its blade with his teeth.
  • Obfuscating Stupidity: Giuseppe. Holy SHIT, Giuseppe.
  • Pregnant Badass: As soon as she and Renzaburou have sex and she gets pregnant, Makie's powers go past the ceiling. So much that she is the one who delivers the fatal blow to the Big Bad, while elegantly and badassedly wrapped in a Modesty Bedsheet.
  • Prehensile Hair: One of Makie's powers is using her hair as Combat Tentacles, which she uses to restrain Jin.
  • Rape as Drama: Most of what happens to Makie throughout the movie.
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil:
    • When Makie is held down by a Radical, he starts forcefully kissing her. While doing so, he unbuttons and slips off her clothes one by one, and then gropes his hand down her panties and around her vagina.
    • And then when she is captured by more Radicals, it goes From Bad to Worse.
  • Rasputinian Death: It takes to be electrocuted, shot at, and receive a church cross jammed in the face for Shadow to get taken down. And even so, he fully regenerates, and it is a superpowered Makie who has to finish him off.
  • The Right of a Superior Species: Makie's ex-lover Jin tries to make her admit this by saying, "Human are lower-class creatures than us. They're only fit for slavery. That's their heritage."
  • Salary Man: Renzaburou's cover as an electronic salesman.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Renzaburou is forced to leave Makie behind, but then he leaves to rescue her from her captors/rapists despite knowing he'll be thrown out of the Black Guard. Again, just how Mayart expected. After the peace treaty is signed, Taki is reinstated and confirms in the closing narration that he has no plans to retire at least until his and Makie's child is old enough to do his part to protect the peace.
  • Seductive Spider: Taki has spent three months trying to seduce a woman he met at a bar. One night she finally goes home with him and they have sex. However, she turns into a spider demon and tries to eat him with her Vagina Dentata.
  • Sex Slave: When Makie is captured by the tentacle monster, she’s brought back to the Radical hideout. There, she is stripped naked and forced to suck a Radical’s penis. While doing so, one other Radical gropes her breasts with clawed hands and another performs anal sex on her.
  • Sexual Karma: Makie and Renzaburou's Glad-to-Be-Alive Sex is very sweet and tender and he goes out of his way to be gentle to her. Reinforcing the trope even more, theirs is the only pleasant and fully consensual sexual encounter in the whole movie.
  • Shock and Awe: Mayart's specialty aside from telekinesis.
  • Sinister Shades: Jin wears those, although crossing into Cool Shades given that he is dressed as some sort of punk.
  • Stalker with a Test Tube: Renzaburou and Makie were intentionally paired up in hopes of conceiving a half-human/half-Black World child. as part of the proposed peace treaty. Giuseppe was actually put in place to facilitate this.
  • Super-Scream: Jin's screams emit psychic waves able to push people away and to tear out limbs.
  • Surprisingly Happy Ending: For all the nasty things which happen in the film, the bad guys are defeated, the main characters end alive and well, and the two worlds are following a road of peace thanks to Makie's and Taki's child. It does have a bittersweet tinge since the novel series keeps on with more conflict, but both of them decide to keep living and going on anyway.
  • Tempting Fate: Hodgkins, the manager of the hotel/safe house where Giuseppe stays, does this twice. First he says "If there's any place safe in this town it's here". Later, as the assassin begins his attack he says "Don't be ridiculous, no one can break through those..." It's like he wanted the attack to succeed.
  • Undressing the Unconscious: When Taki and Makie are rescued from an attack while tied together, they are stripped of all their clothes, and they wake up in a church, in each other’s arms and completely naked. This is all a ploy to get them to have unprotected sex in order for Makie to get pregnant with a mixed baby.
  • Unsafe Haven: The hotel/safe house where Taki Renzaburou takes Giuseppe has triple strength psychic resistance walls to keep out Black World assassins. Naturally, one such assassin breaks in without any particular trouble.
  • Unwilling Suspension: Makie and Renzaburou, after the last fight with the Spider Woman. For worse, they're hanging upside down and their bounds are made of spider web. Augh.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: Jin and Makie used to be on good terms until he joined the Radicals and she joined the Black Guard.
  • Vagina Dentata: The Spider Woman. And it can spew spider web.
  • Vampiric Draining: The Black World radical masquerading as a call girl absorbs Giuseppe into herself and drains almost all of his Life Energy.
  • Wizards Live Longer: Mayart is 200 years old, according to the novel series because he is a wizard.
  • Wolverine Claws: Makie and Jin can extend their fingernails in the shape of sharp blades. Interestingly, either her red nail polish also extends or her nails are naturally that color.
  • Younger Than They Look: Taki is stated to be 25-year old, but his rugged character design makes him look in his early forties.