I finished Beck: Mongolian Chop Squad yesterday... it took about a month to watch since I was using Blockbuster Online to watch this anime (if you do not know what Blockbuster Online is, visit this link and this link). I really want the Beck sountrack now (the english one... if there even is one for the english tracks)!! I really like music based anime, but I have to say that Beck is one of the best I've seen in a while. On withe the review!!
Warning: The anime is rated TV-MA... for mostly language and violence.
Tanaka Yukio, better known by his nickname Koyuki is a 14 year old who feels disconnected from life in general. Through the act of saving a mismatched dog, he meets guitarist Minami Ryuusuke, and becomes involved in Ryuusuke's new band BECK. Koyuki's life starts to change as the band struggles towards fame. [thanks to this place for the summary]
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The first episode or so of Beck was, in all honesty, a turn off (apparently, americans cuss a whole heck of a lot)... yet, being the over the top otaku I can be, I continued to watch the first DVD only to be surprized. I intially (bassed on the first two episodes) did not like this anime and almost hated the english dub. I reccomend sticking with this one untill you get to DVD two. If you still don't like Beck, then stop watching; otherwise, stick with it!!
-The Music/ English Dub-
Ok, ok. I did not love the english dub of the music during the first probably four episodes (FUNimation redubbed the music because of the main characters VA for the english version. DVD 6 comes with a music commentary. You'll learn all about the reason behind redubbing the music in that commentary) because I like Japanese music... then I switched to the Japanese track and was thoroughly... braindead, maybe. The english versions of Beck's music is nicer on the ear, especially as the anime progresses and you can hear how the singers have improved. If you are going to pick up this anime, I highly reccomend watching it in english even though at first the english dub is a little harmfull to the ears. Watching in english is well worth the wait for the last DVD because the last DVD was by far superior to the rest of the series, especially when comparing the english music track.
Beck is not a super new, nor is it a super old anime... yet parts of the animation seem to revert back to an animation style that is much older than Beck. This is a weak part of the series (take a lookout for some Shin-chan like animation in oen of Beck's audiances in the last DVD) and also a strong point. By having weak animation, but excellent 3D sequences for the band scenes is, in my opinion, the right thing to do. If you're looking for an anime with excellent animation, what are you doing reading a review of Beck!? Just kidding. Be sure to pay little attention to the animation and you'll enjoy this anime a whole lot more.
Beck is the story of a band and it's rise, fall and rise again (though the last rise is a bit rushed). I don't have much to say about the story, because Beck is an anime you watch for the music. I will say, though, that the story itself is not that great. Not much character develpoment other than that a character can sing or play an instrument really well.