The "pink jacket" series has seen little play outside of Japan and is chiefly judged by Legend of the Gold of Babylon, the film produced during the same time period. While Babylon and this series share the same comedy style, the third series fares a bit better in its execution.
My preconceptions going into this series were based on Legend of the Gold of Babylon; I was expecting an arduous journey through fifty episodes. However, this third TV series managed to be more entertaining, though not by much. Most of the episodes are mediocre heists lacking the wacky panache the second series mustered. The rest range from absurd slapstick to some of the hard edge the first series had. It was not an exceptional run of fifty episodes, but it managed to be just entertaining enough to keep me watching.
With passable stories, one would hope that the animation and character designs would provide some decent eye candy to help. Not the case with the third series; the character designs are atrocious making the cast elongated, amorphous blobs. Fujiko comes off the worst looking like a hideous, old crone half the time. Near the end of the series, the characters edge back towards more familiar designs, but multiple animators must have been working on the series as they shift from the familiar back to the hideous for the last few episodes.
Overall, this could have been much worse; I could not have sat through fifty episodes of material like Babylon. I managed to get some enjoyment out the series, but it is not one I'll be pulling off the shelf much.
- Arsène Lupin III: Yamada Yasuo
- Jigen Daisuke: Kobayashi Kiyoshi
- Mine Fujiko: Masuyama Eiko
- Ishikawa Goemon: Inoue Makio
- Inspector Zenigata: Naya Goro