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A Really Really Quick Gallery Tour: Classic Cels

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Hyper Police
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Added 4/23/2008
Updated 6/5/2017
Hyper Police is based on a manga by MEE (Minoru Tachikawa) and was produced as a 25-episode anime in 1997 by Studio Pierrot. the series was directed by Takahiro Omori (who also did Fancy Lala, a 1998 Studio Pierrot series). Character design was handled by Keiji Gotoh, a wideranging animation veteran with credentials ranging from Neon Genesis Evangelion to the recent Slayers Revolution and Vampire Knight.

Set in a futuristic world, it focuses on a special police force made up of animal spirits and animal/human hybrids that defend humans, an endangered species, against monsters. Zany and often ecchi in tone, the show features Pierrot's usual inventive character design and high-quality production quality, making both the cels and the sketches a real treat.

A Series Tour

As with many series produced during this busy time, individual episodes were assigned to a number of different animation teams, made up of old regulars and ambitious newcomers. The approaches these teams took were visibly different, ranging through a slapstick "cartoonish" look, a fan-service oriented ecchi angle, and a dark, dramatic feel that paid homage to classic series like Cowboy Bebop.

This gallery, originally one of my "Quirky Tours," surveys a number of episodes for which I recovered sketch art and gives due credit to these talented artists and their often intriguing histories.

Cels: OP and ED

The opening and ending animation are both spritely and amusing, and over the years I've been lucky to gather a small batch from the first and one especially nice cel from the second. These now earn a gallery of their own, with two iconic images from the very start flanking one of the series title cards.

Cels: Natsuki

This gallery focuses on the human/cat-spirit hybrid Natsuki (a sort of Neko-Yasha), whose passion is being a bounty hunter and tracking down pesky monsters. Teamed up with the fox-spirit Sakura, who secretly wants to kill her, she ends up in a variety of fixes, yet somehow retains a wistful energy that draws collectors to her.

My prize possessions here are an exuberant OP cel, a lovely dark-toned ED cel, and several dramatic cels from a crucial scene in which she is given the choice of living as a normal human rather than as a cat-girl. (Any bets on which she chooses?)

Cels: All the Rest

This gallery collects the cels featuring the other members of this quirky cast, ranging from Natsuki's bounty-hunter partners, the fox-spirit Sakura and the werewolves Batanan and Tommy, their human rivals Peau and Fonne, and the occasional bestial low-life.

Sketches: Natsuki (and Sakura)

This gallery includes the sketch art featuring this engaging cat-girl. As with other gengas I’ve gotten from Studio Pierrot series (Saiyuki, Tenshi ni Narumon), the character design and animation planning are meticulous, and this section contains some of the finest sketch art I’ve seen for any series.

Don't miss (here and in the next two galleries) the handful of sketches from the episodes for which Kazumi Ikeda was animation director. A close associate of Tatsuya Ishihara, she later was chief animation director for Clannad and the 2006 remake of Kanon, and has contributed in several ways to the innovative Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya complex.

Sketches: Sakura the Trickster Fox

Sakura, the trickster fox-spirit, manages to be comic, professional, clever, confident, sexy, and, at times, remarkably vulnerable, making her one of the great anime characters. I've been lucky at getting sketch sets that show her in as many of these aspects as possible, including some nearly ecchi ones.

Sketches: The Rest of the Cast

Here you'll find sketch art for the interesting and wide supporting cast, notably the werewolf Batanan whose love for the cat-girl Natsuki is reciprocated but (as any canine-feline romance must be) seriously star-crossed.

    Previous: Gegege no Kitarō 4 (Toei, 1996-97) Next: Inuyasha (Cel-based half)    

Curator: 60something-sensei
Gallery Created: 8/3/2002
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Presentation 8.82/10   Collection 9.47/10   Overall 9.03/10   Votes 84 votes
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