Parental Guidance Recommended
1998-1999. Kia Asamiya (Creator). Nobuyoshi Habara. (director). Xebec. TV Tokyo.
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It was a time when coal was the only source of fuel to run machines and major factories in Steam City. The steam that comes from the machineries envelope the city in a blinding mist that causes criminals to cause crimes especially at night. Unfortunately for them, there is a detective named Narutaki, the son of a deceased famous detective, is out on a crusade to fight them. He fights together with a nurse named Ling-Ling and a powerful robot megamaton Goriki. New criminals arise in Steam City, one of them including the hideous Dr. Guilty and his own robot megamaton.
Such a great "hi-tech" concept. >>> by firesenshi
Maybe it's the megamatons. Goriki's mecha design, from his elongated hands to his round tank-like body reminds me of the old anime where circular instead of angular designs were used.
There's also the nurse Ling-Ling whose character design borders on a cute appearance as a nurse with puffy sleeves, yet has an intelligent mind and is far from the sexy female 'kick-ass' sidekicks we now know in anime.
It is probably also that the universe this has created is centered on steam where the high-tech gadgets not founded on batteries seemed to be locked in metal and coal. I mean, I really wasn't expecting lots of laser power or the trademark of what is "conventionally high-tech." But doesn't mean my eyes didn't pop seeing Narutaki with his gun, a gun of many attachments that does a different thing each you attach something to it. My mind goes, "How they'd think of that?" I mean, considering that this universe was based on coal as fuel which was something that became obsolete with the factories in the early 1900s and yet... here comes the megamaton Goriki wrecking walls and protecting Ling Ling and Narutaki. You'd be amazed at how Kia Asamiya thought of such moving machinery and gadgets on simple technology as ... steam?
Actually though, the art and the villains like Dr. Guilty remind me of Megaman... Round faces and extremely big hair plus the appearance of Dr. Guilty as mad-scientist apparent. No mistake about it, Steam Detectives carries its own distinct kind of charm and storyline but I must admit that it's not as addicting. Narutaki's past about avenging the death of his parents add the seriousness element here but there is nothing so complex in the storyline for us to think intensely. It's simple, entertaining and has a good concept but it depends if this kind of action is your cup of tea.
Individual Rating: Art/Animation 8; Story 7; Characters 8; Sounds 7