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In the distant past, a Japanese samurai embarks on a mission to defeat the evil shape-shifting wizard Aku. Before he can complete his task, though, he is catapulted thousands of years into the future. He finds himself in a world where Aku now enjoys complete power over every living thing. Dubbing himself "Jack," he sets out on a new quest--to right the wrongs that have been done by his enemy and to find a way back to his own time so he can destroy the evil for good. Written by
Alan Back <email@example.com>
One of the things that sets Jack apart from other animated action series is its use of subtlety. Though full of scenes of intense action, there are also long stretches with no dialogue, using imagery to tell the story. The art direction is excellent. Some viewers find the characters have a strange graphic style but it works well in the context of the strange world where Jack finds himself.
I especially like the use of different sizes of wide-screen to aid in the story-telling. A full-frame scene will shift to different ratios of widescreen to emphasize images such as a great distance between two characters or to focus on one's eyes. The series also includes subtle humour (note again, subtlety), such as Jack dressing up as a teenager to infiltrate a rave party or accidentally being transformed into a chicken!
Phil LaMarr is excellent as usual as Jack and Mako is the perfect voice for Aku. Those who dismiss it as an anime rip-off should consider the difference between "rip-off" and "inspired by".
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