June Anime Challenge: Coyote Ragtime Show

Our June anime challenge is one filled with adventure, sci-fi, action, comedy and girls with guns! Coyote Ragtime Show was directed by Takuya Nonaka and produced by ufotable. The anime ran from July to September in 2006.

Pirate King Bruce has been murdered by Madame Marciano, boss of the galactic criminal guild. He left behind a treasure of ten billion space dollars to his young daughter Franca which is hidden somewhere in a vault on the planet Graceland. There is a problem however, the planet is in a state of civil war and the president of the Milky Watt threatens to blow the planet up within a week. It is up to notorious space pirate Mister and his trusty sidekicks Bishop and Katana and his rival Swamp to ‘rescue’ the inheritance!

Week 1 - 3rd June to 9th June 2019

Episodes to watch: 1 – 3

Konnichiwa Minna, welcome to week one of our exciting June anime challenge, Coyote Ragtime Show. Our main character in Coyote Ragtime Show is the notorious space pirate and criminal mastermind simply known to us as ‘Mister’. He is owner of both a bar, called ‘Pirate’ and the spaceship Coyote. His catchphrase is ‘Let’s get this party started!’. He chases after Pirate King Bruce’s treasure not for fun but to honour Bruce and keep his promise to Franca. To him the very definition of Coyote is of cardinal importance, it is not giving up on friends and family. It will be interesting to see, as we explore this anime, how strong his code of honour is.

Mister’s Japanese voice actor is Akio Ōtsuka who was born on November 24, 1959. He is known as both actor and voice actor and when Western series are dubbed in Japanese he is known to voice act Nicolas Cage! The calmness of his deep voice makes him a favourite to use as voice actor and he voice acted very important character in anime such as Black Jack (Black Jack), Batou (Ghost in the Shell series and movies), Blackbeard (One Piece), All For One (My Hero Academia), Rider (Fate/Zero) and Anavel Gato (Mobile Suit Gundam 0083: Stardust Memory). His work extend to voice acting in games and he has been various incarnations of Xehanort (Kingdom Hearts series) and Solid Snake, Naked Snake, Solidus Snake and Venom Snake (Metal Gear games).

Mister’s English voice actor is John Allan Swasey, born on October 18, 1964. He is a voice actor and script writer who works at ADV Films, Funimation and Sentai Filmworks. He has provided numerous voices for English-language versions of Japanese series and games. His most notable roles include Sir Crocodile in One Piece, Lord Death in Soul Eater, and Van Hohenheim in Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. What ever version of Coyote Ragtime Show you are watching English or Japanese, enjoy it. Our challenge episodes this week is episodes 1 – 3. Have a super sugoi week, mina!

Week 2 - 10th June to 16th June 2019

Episodes to watch: 4 – 6

Konnichiwa Minna, we are entering week two of our June anime challenge, Coyote Ragtime Show!

Episode 1 “Prison Break” which we can nickname ‘How to utterly demolish a prison using robot girls with guns and a tsunami of giant insects’ (If you saw the episode you will catch that reference, if not WATCH EPISODE !!) was a roller-coaster of action and crazy bullet rain. We met the beautiful Federal Investigator Angelica Burns who is a ninja-level gunslinger as evident in episode 1. She arrived on a distant planet looking for “Mister”, the criminal mastermind that is very important to the anime. She goes to a prison to take custody of him just to find that she gets more than she bargained for, and the group of assassin girls called the 12 Sisters (Of which some are confirmed to be definitely robotic) are just one of her problems. But enough spoilers. You have to watch last week’s episode 1 to 3 for more.

Angelica Burns’ Japanese is Atsuko Yuya, who was born in 1968 on September 1st in Nagasaki. She works for Gekidan Subaru and she voice acted several anime characters such as Wolf’s Rain’s Cole, Yakitate!! Japan’s Yukino Azusagawa, Trinity Blood’s Mother Laura and Night Head Genesis’ Yamashita. She also dubbed the Lara Craft character for the Lara Croft: Tomb Raider and Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – The Cradle of Life movies.

Her English-language voice actor counterpart is Christine McPeters Auten who was born May 7, 1969 in Huntsville, Alabama and is an American voice actress and ADR director, and ADR scriptwriter who works for Funimation, ADV Films and Sentai Filmworks. She is also currently a producer for SXSW Interactive. Characters she has voice acted include Kurenai from Samurai Gun, Yufan Xia from Full Metal Panic: The Second Raid, Priscilla Asagiri from Bubblegum Crisis Tokyo 2040, Teresa from Claymore and Ozen from Made in Abyss! Our challenge episodes this week is episodes 4 – 6. Have a super sugoi week, minna, enjoy the show!

Week 3 - 17th June to 23rd June 2019

Episodes to watch: 7 – 9

Konnichiwa Minna, we are entering week three of our June anime challenge, Coyote Ragtime Show! This week we focus on Franca, Pirate King Bruce’s daughter, whom we met in episode 2: “The Girl of the Pirate Hideout”. In the episode Mister, Bishop and Katana go to Mister’s bar, “Pirate,” and is met by a young girl who has just stopped a bar fight with a frying pan and it turns out she has been looking after the bar in Mister’s absence. In the episode lots of action happens as Mister and Franca are hunted by various individuals and for her protection Franca joins the crew of the ship “Coyote” with Mister and company. As you will see in the anime the girl is very cynical because she believes Mister and crew wants the treasure for themselves.

Franca Dockley’s Japanese voice actress is Ryō Hirohashi. Hirohashi was born in August of 1977 and is a voice actress affiliated with Aoni Production. She is known for mainly voicing young boys and girls in anime and made her debut in the anime series Aquarian Age: Sign for Evolution. Some of her notable anime voice acting roles are from Haibane Renmei (Rakka), Gundam Build Fighters and Gundam Build Fighters Try (Kaoruko Sazaki), Koufuku Graffiti (Kirin’s mother) and My Hero Academia (Minoru Mineta). Some of the games that showcase her voice acting talents include Wild Arms 4 where she played Fiore/Asia and One Piece: Unlimited Adventure where she played Popora.

Brittney Marie Karbowski is Franca’s English voice actor. She was born in June 1986 and is an American voice actress who has voiced in a number of English-language versions of Japanese anime series for ADV Films, Funimation and Sentai Filmworks. Her most notable work includes Chrono Crusade (Sister Anna), Mushishi (Ito Tozawa) Ouran High School Host Club (Hinako Tsuwabuki), Shuffle! (Sia), Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood (Selim Bradley / Pride) and Soul Eater (Black Star).

Our challenge episodes this week is episodes 7 – 9. Have a super sugoi week, minna, and have fun with the challenge!

Week 4 - 24th June to 30th June 2019

Episodes to watch: 10 – 12

Konnichiwa Minna, we are entering the final week of our June anime challenge, Coyote Ragtime Show! Since we have a powerful female main character in a science Fiction setting in the form of Franca Dockley it seems like a great time to give some recommendations of science fiction anime with great female protagonists for those in the mood for more femme fatale action anime.

First recommendation is Appleseed. It tells the story of Deunan Knute, who searches for data that can restore the reproductive capabilities of Bioroids, a race of genetically engineered clones. The movie’s main setting is Olympus, Earth’s last surviving utopia following the devastation of war. Olympus is governed by Gaia, a supercomputer which is maintained by a council of seven elders. Here humans live alongside Bioroids, which look identical to humans, but are unable to reproduce or experience love (they do have emotions but lack the ‘human touch’). Simmering friction between the two races explodes when a Bioroid production facility is attacked and only Deunan Knute has the resolve to save humanity before it is too late. This is her tale – one woman trying to fight for peace in a world that appears in harmony on the surface, but is not due to the inter-species conflict between Bioroids and Humans. Appleseed is directed by Shinji Aramaki and based on the Appleseed Manga created by Masamune Shirow.

Our next recommendation is Agent Aika. The series takes place in the not so distant future, with 95% of landmass drowned by the vast ocean after a great disaster. (Think of it as a science fiction-meets-Waterworld-setting. As a result of most of the world being under water, the profession of choice is that of Salvager – high tech scavengers that comb sunken cities for loot. Aika Sumeragi is one such Salvager who works for a small company run by a father and daughter team. Unfortunately, the company isn’t exactly successful, and money is needed desperately. To help, Aika accepts the very dangerous job of acquiring an artifact called Lagu for a hefty sum. Aika’s partner and best friend, the boss’ daughter Aida Rion joins Aika on this mission. Aika also has the added advantage of a special bustier, and when it is activated, she becomes a superhuman who can take on whole armies by herself.

Be warned: there is a lot of fanservice in this anime such the continuous bombardment of way too short skirts, lecherous camera angles, nudity and wilfully unladylike poses. The animation is good for its time (1997) but shows its age since it’s typical nineties-era animation that does not have the effects and tricks the newer anime have. Also, the voice acting in English a bit silly, so rather watch it in Japanese with subtitles, as it compliments the humour in the anime even more.

Our challenge episodes this week is episodes 10 – 12. Have a super sugoi week, minna, enjoy the final leg of our Coyote Ragtime Show challenge!