The coronavirus pandemic is still in process and movie theaters largely remain shuttered — though I’ve been having dreams that the one I go to is opening soon, I’m not sure if I’m becoming psychic or just plain old desperate. I’ve been looking for new shows to watch. My boyfriend suggested Black Lagoon, and I’m so glad he did.
While on a business trip for his company, Rokuro Okajima (voiced by Daisuke Namikawa in Japanese and Brad Swaile in English) is kidnapped by members of the Lagoon Company: Dutch (voiced by Tsutomu Isobe in Japanese and Dean Redman in English), Revy (voiced by Megumi Toyoguchi in Japanese and Maryke Hendrikse in English), and Benny (voiced by Hiroaki Hirata in Japanese and Brian Drummond in English). They are modern-day pirates who smuggle goods in and around the seas of Southeast Asia. Their base of operations in the fictional city of Roanapur in East Thailand near the Cambodian border, and they transport them in a PT boat known as the Black Lagoon.
Rokuro is written off by his employer but eventually given the opportunity to return with them. Instead, Rock — a nickname given by Dutch — has decided he has had it with corporate life and decides to stay with the Lagoon Company, who takes him on as a new member. Together, the team takes on various missions — most of which involve violent firefights, physical confrontations, or nautical warfare.
An anime television series, Black Lagoon is based on the Japanese manga series of the same name. The show, which aired in 2006, consists of two seasons with twelve episodes each. A five volume original video animation series, titled Black Lagoon: Roberta’s Blood Trail, aired from 2010 to 2011.
Black Lagoon is simply amazing. It’s like watching an ‘80s action film, with so many over-the-top adrenaline-pumping action sequences. The opening theme, “Red Fraction,” performed by I’ve Sound singer Mell, is a toe-tapper and insanely perfect prelude for the epic rampage that is to follow.
One of my favorite parts, in addition to the action, is the dark humor — absolutely hilarious. The dubbing was also brilliantly done and one of the best I’ve seen. Another highlight is the character of Revy. She is super badass and brings life to every scene.
I also really enjoyed the dynamic between Rock and Revy. Rock’s personality can best be described as a naive new kid on the block meets a conservative, corporate foot soldier. Revy, like I mentioned earlier, is tough as nails. She is strong, determined, and kind of rough but in a sympathetic way. These two clashing personalities are quite the sight to behold in early episodes and it was great to watch their relationship evolve as the series went on.
The sole negative is it only lasted two seasons. I could watch the adventures of Rock, Revy, and the rest of the Lagoon Company until the end of time. The concept may not be terribly original, but the execution is next-level awesome. Black Lagoon is available on Hulu. Give it a try.