No Guns Life – Anime Preview
Synopsis: Humans that have been physically altered and turned into dangerous weapons are known as the Extended. Juuzou Inui awakens as one of these weapons—with amnesia. But his job as an agent investigating the Extended leads to a mysterious child with Extended ties showing up at his office. Now Inui must keep the child away from street gangs and the megacorporation Berühren, and it won’t be easy. (Official Funimation Synopsis)
1st Episode Review (Warning: Minor Spoilers to Follow):
Tom: No Guns Life opens with a strong, hard-boiled atmosphere as we follow Juuzou Inui, an Extended who’s turned to private detective/slums heroism work. The show nails its gritty, otherworldly, sci-fi atmosphere with a few well placed lines of exposition and just the right series of events to suck us into the story. Juuzou Inui is an immediately compelling protagonist, offering just the right amount of bad ass and damaged persona to make him feel like the kinda run down hero you just have to root for. He may be a bit cliche, but his unique, if absurd visual design, helps to keep him from feeling like a totally archetype of gritty heroism.
Linny: As insane and ridiculous as it is to have a hero with a gun for a head, No Guns Life makes it work. The unique designs, combined with both solid and decent animation, are interesting to look at and support the interesting, post-war sci-fi world that the show is set in. I have to agree that Juuzou ‘steals’ his own show as a charming lead thanks to his badass vibes and heart of gold. The show also tries to inject some comedy through him to mixed results. He becomes easily flustered with comical reactions when he receives an innocent peck on the cheek from a young woman he helped out, or when a rather busty villain strips down in front of him. It’s fairly cliche humour, and its sudden and exaggerated appearance does make it feel at odds with the more sombre tone of the rest of the production.
Tom: Visually, outside of these jarring comedic shifts in tone, No Guns Life nails the attitude of its story, melding perfectly with the flow of the narrative and its characters. That said, I do worry about the production as there’s a few places here where visuals feel a little loose and not nearly as tight and crisp as one might wish from a premiere episode. Rarely do anime visuals improve over the course of their run, and it’s possible that No Guns Life could stumble hard. But what’s here has me engaged not so much on visual quality, but more so on atmosphere, tight writing and attitude. No Guns Life is perfect for audiences who want something a little more adult but without the outrageous raunchy sex appeal that usually accompanies more gritty Seinen titles, seeing as the most fanservice we get is played briefly and without additional sleaze. Assuming the story remains as gripping as in this first episode, No Guns Life is a top contender for this Fall’s line up, probably my new favorite of the bunch.
Linny: No Guns Life feels like a solid addition to the Autumn anime line up with its unique setting, protagonist’s design and a heart strings tugging tale at the centre of it all. It makes good use of its quirky world with its enhanced humans to weave a morally engaging and action packed tale of saving innocent lives from the clutches of an evil corporation. Yes it’s a tale almost as old as time but No Guns Life nails the execution, offering just enough grit and style to breathe new life into its plot. For those of you seeking a story with older characters and a grim world that stands far from the sunshine filled lands of Shonen, No Guns Life may be the perfect show this season.
No Guns Life is available for streaming via Funimation.