AMERICA – F*CK YEAH!
Great song, by the way.
Eden of the East stands out from any other show this season simply by dint of being completely different from anything both this season and any season I’ve seen before, something which certainly owes a quite a bit to the bizarre premise – Japanese girl meets Japanese guy in Washington, D.C…. and he’s naked. And carrying a gun. And has amnesia. And at least four passports. And, yeah, I guess parts of that don’t make it completely original in a general sense (although I do think it stays fairly original in the realm of anime), but the creators know enough to make a clever winking reference to the audience to acknowledge that fact.
I was impressed by the faithfulness they took with the set designs – the fence surrounding the Washington Monument area? Yep, seen those a lot. The jersey barriers were also legit. D.C. (by which I mean what the average American visualizes when they think of D.C.) of the current day isn’t that pretty, sadly, and they stuck to that fact even if it wasn’t too terribly aesthetically pleasing. Even Dulles was dead-on; I actually spent about five hours in the terminal they showed this past January when a flight of mine was delayed, and even the shop stand they showed was true to life.
One of the things I find interesting about the set-up, though, is the premise of nuclear threats – missiles land on Tokyo at the end of the episode. Currently, there’s quite a bit of fear in Japan about nuclear missiles, given the recent North Korean missile tests and posturing on the issue. For Americans, the paranoia of the Cold War era is largely either a distant memory or something they’ve only heard about in history class; its hard for us to understand. However, its something which has lurked at the back of political discourse in Japan for a while, periodically re-surfacing when North Korea has decided to make a show of force. The missile North Korea tried out last month went twice as far as any before it. I’d say Eden of the East has some potential for some intriguing commentary, and I look forward to seeing how it plays out.