Of first impressions and Tiger Mask W

I don’t think I can express how much I think people are overlooking Tiger Mask W.  I wish people would just look beyond the art and animation or getting a bad reaction from a first episode and immediately dismiss a series because of it.  How do know that the series isn’t immediately going to become one of your favorite series after an entire season?  In effect, you really don’t.  Nothing is ever proven or certain.  Now that I have gotten the technical aspects out of the way, let’s talk more about the technical aspects of Tiger Mask W.

To start this off, I don’t think that quality of animation is something you should judge a series on.  For one, this series is from Toei and they are in no way a Studio Bones, a Studio Madhouse, or a Production I.G.  This isn’t a fault for the anime itself.  Toei is closer to the level of David Production studio, which maintains Decent choreographed action with mixed production values.  Sometimes there is amazing animation and sometimes lesser animation.  With a long running 39-episode series like this one it seems to be a standard practice.  I mean, look at Jojo: Part 4 from the past few seasons.  It’s production quality has not been consistent throughout either.  I have to say though, Tiger Mask W has some fantastic fight scenes.  Tiger Mask vs Red Death Mask is the peak fight of the series so far because it is phenomenal, visceral, and terrifying.  There are other great fights with these aspects and some not as exciting ones with a possibility of having more later on.  Still, the great fight scenes are completely worth it and they go well with its decent story.

Tiger Mask W is a sports anime, so one can automatically assume that it is a tournament style action series.  There are a lot of one on one fights with a plot about revenge pulling it all together.  This sounds basic, but there is a lot more to it.  Naoto is a wrestler because that is what saved him.  Without it, he had nothing.  While he was riding this lost hope for him, his adopted father or gym leader’s group of wresters was challenged by Tiger’s Den.  Well, you can imagine what that happens next.  A major wrestler severely injures Naoto’s father figure.  So yes, Naoto takes the name of Tiger Mask in revenge and takes hellish training to live up to the legendary namesake.  This story is also filled up with a lot of nuances.  Like the fact that despite Tiger Mask is in the revenge field, he’s just a masked wrestler like everybody else.  Or what about the question of whether or not he can he lives up to the original Tiger Mask by a lot of people?  A lot more thought went into this series than some people have considered.

While this series has its own story, it also maintains a link to the past series.  While the protagonist and the story are its own, there are many characters from the previous series that show up to add this link.  I haven’t watched either of those series before, but they are on my always growing to watch list.  I want to know more about these characters, the overarching story, and this world.  Tiger Mask W is a great gateway to knowing this world.  Whether or not I decide to pursue is my choice to make and I’m excited to have it.  Then again, I have always been interested in series with retro vibes to them.  I don’t think I have ever hidden that from anyone.

In the end, I don’t know if I have made a decent enough argument or not, but know that I really like this series and where it’s going.  Whether or not more people watch it doesn’t concern me as much as people watching one episode and then completely dismissing a series without knowing its potential.  If there was a point for this post, that is it.  That’s my argument.  Whether or not Tiger Mask W continues to live up to its potential in the end is still in the air right now, but I believe it can.  If you want a seris to give you an impression, please give the show enough time to speak for itself and make its case.  After that, you can drop it if you want.  That’s all I want to say.


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