Beyond that road, she’ll come back.
So I finally managed to finish the series this week. And I honestly don’t know what to think about it all and how things ended.
A brief intro, since it’s been a while I discussed this series. Michiko Malandro is a badass escape convict who is on the run with Hatchin Morenos to find the man of her life, Hiroshi Morenos. This basic premise is then spiced up with the fact that Hiroshi is always on the move from woman to woman city to city, in what seems to be Latin America.
Also, along the journey we see continuous interactions with two key people: Atsuko Jackson and Satoshi Batista. Atsuko is Michiko’s childhood friend who is with the Police and is either always one step behind Michiko, or catches up to her and then let’s her go. Satoshi on the other hand is Hiroshi’s childhood friend and is an ex-boss of a widely feared syndicate called Monstro Preto. While Satoshi is out to find Hiroshi as well, to what purpose and end, it was never really clear. Maybe he wanted to go back to the good old days with his buddy in crime and rule the streets again.
So that’s the story, a lover and his daughter along with his best friend are out to find him. And he doesn’t really care, seeing as he would have heard about them on the news. Instead, Hiroshi himself seems to be running away from them, from his past? Or just more women. His purpose was never really clear either.
And that’s the whole problem with the anime. You have characters interacting with each other and going towards one goal, but it all ends up being messy. Not because of the difficult situations the characters get in, but how poorly these incidents seem to be glued together to make an incoherent picture of muddled up thoughts and ideas (from Manglobe).
So to put it very simply, you see Michiko to Hatchin only to enjoy what’s going onscreen and then forget about it. It’s a lot of fun to see the many sticky situations the two get themselves into and how they manage to pull out, or are helped out of. All the characters have confused feelings about themselves and how to reach their destination, much like in real life.
The anime itself is a visual treat, with some of the best art design in Manglobe on hand. I don’t know how much of the visuals were influenced by the director Sayo Yamaoto herself, but to me it all looks mighty fine. And the music is just brilliantly produced by Shinichiro Watanabe. Of course, nothing less than brilliance could be expected from the guys who directed Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo. Also, the fact that they had Kassin +2, an actual Brazilian band, create the music wasn’t a bad idea either :p
In the end, did Michiko to Hatchin feel lacklustre? Certainly not, but I wouldn’t say the journey was so great either. There were some instances, in which the anime reminded me of Pulp Fiction. The right characters with the right chemistry were shown in the right time at the left wrong place. It was just fun to enjoy those simple moments. Beyond that however, the appeal of Michiko to Hatchin doesn’t stretch out as that cult classic’s did. So just enjoy the ride while it lasts, and forget about the journey.