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I'll make it no secret that Rurouni Kenshin is my most favorite anime of all time. I used to say that Neon Genesis Evangleion was my favorite but that was mostly because it brought me into anime; then I said Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood but that was because FMAB had a truly great and very well written story. However, after rewatching the series and admitting it has SOME flaws, I reconsidered and declared Kenshin to be my most favorite anime.
No anime lead me to google so much about it or to analyze it's themes so much; no anime affected me so much with it's philosophy and characters, except for maybe Neon Genesis Evangelion but whereas Evangelion made me depressed, Kenshin actually taught me how to live, how to grow stronger and be happy. Few anime have such a great and well developed cast characters with one of the greatest protagonsits ever created. Seriously, Kenshin is to anime what Superman is to comic books.
Yes, it has some flaws, none of which detract away from the story as I don't recall anyone acting like an idiot or doing a stupid decision. The biggest flaw in Kenshin is, especially in early episodes of the anime, the narration of the obvious. Even I got tired of how the characters would constantly say how strong and inhuman Kenshin is or what he just did. This doesn't count for when the characters talk about the chocies they make throughout life or how they live it because honestly, I love those bits. They make the battle more intense and make it more magnificent; the battle between Kenshin and Soujiro the Tenken would not have been half as good without Soujiro breaking down. Another flaw of the anime were some unbelievable villians like Raijuta and Fuji but they still provided some good scenes. Overall, Kenshin has very few flaws and the good stuff is so excellent and well executed it overshadows even the bad filler arcs from the later parts of the anime. Plus, the Jinchuu arc in the manga was one of the greatest endings to anything with a very suspenseful battle and deep meaning behind it.
Overall, I give Kenshin a 9.5 out of 10 if not a 10. It really is highly recommended if you want to lead a good life and be entertained.
"Yes, it has some flaws, none of which detract away from the story as I don't recall anyone acting like an idiot or doing a stupid decision."
Alright, but is that really a good thing? People act like idiots and make stupid decisions in real life. Quite frankly, I'd have a problem with a story where everyone always did the right thing; that's just not human. (But what do I know? I just read the first volume of the Manga - I don't have nearly as much authority to talk about the series as you do.)
There are many things that happen in real life but are still justifiably considered bad writing when done in fiction. Reality Is Unrealistic is just part of that, but also because that type of thinking can be used to justify any bit of sloppy storytelling.
More importantly, there is a gulf of difference between making stupid decision and making decisions that are smart, but quite the right idea, or if they have very good reason to be wrong.
I dunno, it just doesn't seem like much of a compliment to say that no one acted stupidly. Sure, it can be used to justify sloppy storytelling, but I'd say it's equally sloppy characterization to have characters that never do anything dumb. Reality Is Unrealistic doesn't apply here; characters are, in my opinion, more nuanced and interesting when the writers give them the freedom to make human errors and mistakes.
Thing is, I wouldn't call "human errors and mistakes" to be acting stupidly. There is a big difference between being wrong and being stupid.
Being wrong often comes from being stupid, and vice versa; it's difficult to have just one without the other. It just feels odd to say that characters can't act stupid in order for the manga to be good; after all, acting stupidly isn't inherently a justification for poor plotting. Moreover, acting stupidly, I would say, is a human error/mistake. Characters who always make perfectly correct or perfectly justified decisions aren't particularly realistic characters, and I can't imagine spending a lot of time with one without that character growing tiresomely perfect.
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