The Smash First Season Anime Extravaganza in one complete set! Major Motoko Kusanagi is a beautiful but deadly cyborg that is squad leader of Section 9-the Japanese government's clandestine unit assigned to battle terrorism and cyber warfare Surrounded by an expertly trained team, Motoko faces her ultimate challenge- the Laughing Man- a terrorist who orchestrated a kidnapping and extortion plot many years ago and has suddenly reappeared. In order to discover the identity of this enigmatic criminal, Motoko and Section 9 are drawn into a deadly labyrinth and theyll have to use all their expertise to survive This acclaimed anime series is from Production I.G (Kill Bill) and features the amazing music if Yoko Kanno (Cowboy Behop) with stories by Kenji Kamiyama (Blood, Jin-Roh) and Dai Soto (Eureka SeveN)
The 2002 broadcast series based on Mamoru Oshii's landmark film Ghost in the Shell
(1995) takes place in a parallel world, where Major Motoko Kusanagi didn't vanish into The Net. Although its production values are lower, and director Kenji Kamiyama never matches Oshii's inspired camerawork, Stand Alone Complex
does an impressive job of recreating the setting and characters. With the help of the other officers from Public Security Section 9, Kusanagi moves through a deadly city of mecha
, cyborgs, humans, and human-prosthetic hybrids. Batou emerges as a more complex and compelling character in the TV series than he was in Ghost in the Shell II: Innocence
: He engages the other characters, instead of endlessly quoting philosophers.
Politics and cyber-espionage collide in a somewhat tangled plot that centers on the pursuit of The Laughing Man, an über-hacker whose pseudonym is linked to J.D. Salinger's 1949 story of the same name. The master cyber-criminal leads Kusanagi and Batou into a web of murder and deceit involving bogus cures for "cyberbrain sclerosis" and corrupt government ministers. In the secondary story, the Tachikomas, crab-like robots used by Section 9, develop personalities and an awareness of their existence. The Tachikomas recognize some of the implications of their growing consciousness, but their childish voices--modeled after the performance of Japanese actress Akiko Tamagawa--sound odd discussing philosophical questions. Not surprisingly, the story ends with Kusanagi, Batou, et al. tackling a new case that leads into the 2nd Gig. (Rated 13 and older: considerable violence, violence against women, grotesque imagery, nudity, alcohol and tobacco use) --Charles Solomon