Anime used to have a brilliant reputation of being sinister, depraved and brutal; I liked those days. Nowadays it seems a little doe-eyed and fluffy (kawaii anyone?) I for one am a little sick of watching school girls having pillow fights in their underwear, so I went back to the place where awesome violence and darkness came from; the 80s. Wicked City is the movie that comes to my mind when I think of 80s Japanese anime; it’s got demons, tentacles, distress and of course quite an enormous amount of sex (well, actually it’s more rape than sex… I did say it was depraved.) Oh, and the genre? Sexual thriller/horror neo-noir. Yep, it’s time to get out of the kiddie pool.
The story revolves around the Black World which is inhabited by demons and the normal Earth-world which is inhabited by humans. Fortunately the demons can’t just go attacking the humans because of the wonders of the Peace Treaty, yay. The time has come for the treaty renewal and of course there’s always someone who has to kick up a fuss about it, this time it is The Radicals who will stop at nothing to put a stop to the treaty being signed. Two Black Guard agents are given the task of making sure the signing goes smoothly, the human Taki (salesman by day, Black guard by night) and the she-demon Makie who is talented and of course sexy. Their job is to protect some sort of 200 year-old weirdo/pervert/sorcerer whose presence at the signing is of the essence, but of course all hell breaks loose when The Radicals et al start terrorizing everyone.
It doesn’t really sound all that gruesome when I read that part back, so let’s get to what you want to hear. The darkest part is probably all of the rape, there is so much of it even I thought it may have been a bit of an overload, and let’s not forget this is the 80s when people ran screaming out of the cinema if a 10-year-old vomited pea soup onto a vicar. Then there’s the demon spider woman whose vagina eats people, then Makie gets raped, bloody decapitations, Makie gets raped again, so much nudity orientated violence it is almost silly (almost!) Makie gets gang-raped, more mutilation, vaginal semen, probably more rape and then a pretty good twist at the end.
If you’ve made it to this part of the review then you haven’t been completely disgusted and I congratulate you. Yes it all seems a little much but I assure you it is entertaining and intense, and believe it or not there is even a bit of an emotional love story in there. Considering this film is 25 years old the animation is totally up to scratch and even still pretty jaw-dropping (though I’m sure it will have dropped from disgust already.)