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WitchHunterRobin is an anime that hasn't been released for North America yet, although there are various fansub versions floating around.

SeleneTan was browsing and saw some mentions of it, looked a bit harder and found some pictures and character descriptions (especially of Amon), and decided to try getting the series. 4 days later she had episodes 1-10. Ah, the wonders of fast connections and peer-to-peer file sharing programs... By the end of a week, she had up to episode 21, which may well be all the episodes that have been fansubbed.

The anime centers around a group of Witch Hunters, STN-Japan. (In 21 episodes they've never mentioned what "STN" stands for.) (I'd say CastleVania: Symphony Of The Night myself...) Witches are people with special powers, which range from throwing firebolts (Robin) to levitation and telekinesis (a *lot* of the witches that show up seem to be telekinetics...). STNJ used to have 2 partner-teams and 1 communications-support guy, but a while back they lost a member. In the first episode, a replacement shows up - Robin. Robin's a "Craft user", i.e. she has fun powers and can throw fire-thingies at people. She also has bad aim, at least to begin with, which makes her partner (Amon) not happy. Amon is pretty un-emotional and distant, and it's a while before he starts treating Robin like a partner. He's also a really bad-ass witch hunter. :P The communications-support-guy (hey, every special-ops-ish team has to have one, right?) is Michael; he was a hacker who got into the STN computers and got caught and then recruited. He seems to be able to type incredibly fast. Sometime I should pause the videos and try to figure out what he's actually coding.

STN-J is also special because, unlike Solomon Headquarters, they capture witches and send them to "Factory" instead of killing them. To do this, they use a substance called Orbo, which is manufactured by Factory. Orbo starts out bright green, but as it absorbs witch powers (or something like absorb), it kind of boils and turns black when it's been used up.

The first 10 or so episodes have a MonsterOfTheWeek? setup. Some sort of murder or crime happens that is weird enough that it must have been caused by a witch, STN-J goes and investigates, and they catch the witch. The 11th episode seems like more MonsterOfTheWeek?, but then they actually bring back a character from it in episode 12. Episode 12 is actually kind of weird, with a long discussion of what it is to be a witch, and people start playing with Robin's mind. Then the series takes off and there are various conspiracies and questions about what "Headquarters" is doing, since a lot of weird things start happening to Robin and to STN-J. In episode 20 Robin has to fight an air-elemental witch, and in episode 21 she has to fight an earth-elemental witch. It'll be kind of disappointing if they continue and make her fight water- and fire-elemental witches in the next two episodes, since that's been done a lot.

The music's pretty good, although a lot of songs are repeated, e.g. the "this is spooky" background music, and of course the STN-J theme.

I've heard some people say they like WitchHunterRobin because it's more original than a lot of recent anime. I really wouldn't know since I don't watch much.

Episodes 1-26 are shared on SeleneTan's computer, whose name Robyero.

Unfortunately, it seems like the entire run of WitchHunterRobin is 26 episodes. The 26th episode is pretty final, although the ending is one of those where it's conceivably possible to continue the series. In episodes 22-26, the series explores Robin's past (since she's an orphan raised by Solomon) and what Orbo really is. Also, Michael gets to actually leave the building. :P

Aw, it should be like Ranma, where no-one's really sure how many episodes there are.

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Last edited April 11, 2005 18:40 (diff)