Author Topic: More true to the manga?  (Read 20859 times)

ehh123

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More true to the manga?
« on: May 04, 2014, 06:14:59 pm »
First, let me get this out of the way. I LOVE the art style of The Woman Called Fujiko Mine. Takeshi Koike is an amazing animator with a unique style. I liked the Redline movie he did and I am excited he is returning to Lupin III with a promotion to full director as opposed to just character designer and animation director.

That being said, I think we all know that saying the art style is "more true to the manga" is a bit misleading. That would imply that this would be something like Mankatsu, which is not really the case. Rather, I think a better way to put it is that this is Takeshi Koike's interpretation of the original material. There are elements of the original manga in the anime like using gender symbols to represent a sex scene and a few silly facial expressions here and there but then there are things like Oscar's character design that would not fit with the source material. I mean, look at these scans. Does this remind you of Fujiko Mine at all?

Once again, I love the art style, so this isn't a slam. It's just that when I think of something that looks "more true to the manga", my mind of goes to the black and white scenes at the end of Green vs. Red.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2014, 06:17:48 pm by ehh123 »

Aelia

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #1 on: May 04, 2014, 06:32:33 pm »
I recall the character sheets having manga inspired facial expressions. Being the mostly humorless affair that "The Woman Called Fujiko Mine" was, I don't think many of them were used. Zenigata's surely weren't.

But, being manga-inspired isn't really the same as being taken straight from it.

LadyLupin

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #2 on: May 04, 2014, 07:47:19 pm »
A Woman Called Fujiko Mine reminds me of the early manga art.

Reed

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2014, 12:41:31 pm »
Once again, I love the art style, so this isn't a slam. It's just that when I think of something that looks "more true to the manga", my mind of goes to the black and white scenes at the end of Green vs. Red.

People are saying "MORE true to the manga," not MOST true to the manga, which would either be something like the Pilot Film, Mankatsu (as you suggested), the Monkey Majik music video, or that one Play the Lupin video. Everything else has more co-mingling with other inspirations. But if you compare Fujiko to say, the First or Second TV Series, Fujiko's art style IS "more true to the manga". Oscar wasn't in the manga so it doesn't really matter how different he looks anyway.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2014, 12:48:51 pm by Reed »
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Red Dear

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2014, 05:14:13 pm »
The thing is, to have a more comprehensive opinion on the subject, one must understand that an art style from a comic
will always need twics and modifications before it could pass animation. So alterations must made and it's never been more true in Monkey Punch's case.

If you look at his very first art syle, it's pretty inconsistant and sometimes very abstract. So the Pilo film already made an interpretation of it. And so did the other styles. If you look closely, the first green jacket episodes still show some of Monkey Punch's first style's features. This influence faded away after Miyazaki's arrival. The first episodes of red jacket had a lot of "lupin III new adventures" in their designs and the Pink Jacket first episodes were straight of the "Shin Lupin III" series.

For Takeshi Koike's case, it's a bit more complex. First we have Koike's own flavour wich is very distinct but relatively subdued compared to the Monkey Punch inspiration wich is very present in the way the characters move and behave, how their clothes move etc. It's undeniable that Mine Fujiko To Iu Onna had the most "monkey Punch-y" sequences since the Pilot Film.

But their is also the problem of continuity and that's were things get weird. The case of Goemon is a good example. Koike's Goemon is straight out of the green Jacket series who never quite looked like his manga counterpart. Goemon always had designs problems. Since the Mine Fujiko series is meant to be a prequel to the green jacket series, it is understandable that Goemon looks that way. The other characters are allowed to be different because they probably are more recognizable.

So to me, the Mine Fujiko character designs are one of the closest to the original manga, at least in terms of feeling and expressions.

By the way: A lot of people seem not to like the Dead or Alive design, saying it's way too different from the source material. Keep in mind the movie was from 1996 and that it was based on Monkey Punch's way of drawing his own characters at the time. Because that's the thing; Monkey Punch's style has changer drastically over the decades so there is no definitive original design.
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Reed

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #5 on: May 06, 2014, 10:15:19 am »
way: A lot of people seem not to like the Dead or Alive design, saying it's way too different from the source material. Keep in mind the movie was from 1996 and that it was based on Monkey Punch's way of drawing his own characters at the time. Because that's the thing; Monkey Punch's style has changer drastically over the decades so there is no definitive original design.

I forgot about Dead or Alive. The designs are very much based on MP's designs, much like how Lupin the 8ths were. I stand firm that the Pilot Film's designs were the most similar to the manga because, out of Yasuo Ohtsuka's own mouth, Monkey Punch was actively contributing to its development until he couldn't handle the workload any more. Everything after that looks more like Ohtsuka's influence or something else entirely.

Part III and Babylon did a great job of trying to reinterpret or reimagine bringing MP's artistic zaniness in design to the screen without copying his style verbatim, and I'd hardly call it a 1:1 adaptation. Fujiko took a similar approach: take the general "look" of Monkey Punch's original art and give it movement without looking like an exact stylistic  copy.  It's not 1:1 either, but it's much, much closer than Castle of Cagliostro, for instance. Also, like MP's manga, it probably has the biggest nudity:total runtime ratio of any of the anime installments (unless Mamo or Twilight Gemini outdoes it).
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fryguy81

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #6 on: June 03, 2014, 08:10:34 pm »
I'll say that I have enjoyed The Fujiko series immensely and I'm only on Episode 3. The use of shadows, the more mature approach to the subject matter and character (and I'm not talking about the nudity). I was wondering how Lupin would be handled in regards to the tonal shift but I loved how he stayed true to the character that we have known in the anime.

But Jigen's story was a knock out of the park from beginning to end. Such a wonderful pathos in that story and I love the idea that his animosity toward Fujiko may have more to do than just her deceitful nature.

So far, so great.
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busterbeam

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #7 on: June 06, 2014, 10:44:19 am »
A Woman Called Fujiko Mine reminds me of the early manga art.

....seriously?






Honestly, I think there's really no justifying this misconception, no matter how popular Wikipedia has made it. The manga has always had completely different artistic sensibilities from Fujiko; they are practically polar opposites. The only similarity is the 'sketchiness', but even that's applied in a vastly different way; Monkey Punch's work was sketchy because it was specifically drawn in a dynamism-over-detail, spur-of-the-moment way. The Fujiko anime was very detailed and not spontaneously drawn at all, and the sketchiness was actually carefully controlled. Sometimes they even copypasted the 'pencil shading' effect to the point where it looked awkwardly computerized.

Not to mention, outside of the blatant, in-your-face 'THIS IS A WACKY COMIC RELIEF SCENE' moments, it's just so freaking serious. A Lupin manga story didn't even have to be inherently comedic writing-wise to have lots of funny drawings. Monkey Punch added them all the time because it was an inherent part of the experience, not something tossed aside a a 'break' from the main dish of serious-business storytelling.

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People are saying "MORE true to the manga," not MOST true to the manga, which would either be something like the Pilot Film, Mankatsu (as you suggested), the Monkey Majik music video, or that one Play the Lupin video. Everything else has more co-mingling with other inspirations. But if you compare Fujiko to say, the First or Second TV Series, Fujiko's art style IS "more true to the manga". Oscar wasn't in the manga so it doesn't really matter how different he looks anyway.

The second half of Pink Jacket looks a million times more similar to Monkey Punch drawings than Fujiko. The fact that people are more likely to say Fujiko looks like the manga dumbfounds me. Hell, the TV series of Red and Green also look way more like a Monkey Punch work because they focus far more on being a "cool and stylish but also stupid and goofy" cartoon and less on being a serious, atmospheric crime series with lots of detail.

I'm seriously not seeing how it looks "more" true to the manga. More true compared to what, Cagliostro? If so then, perhaps arguably so; but the three TV seasons already have tons of episodes that look far more Monkey Punch-like than Fujiko.

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If you look at his very first art syle, it's pretty inconsistant and sometimes very abstract. So the Pilo film already made an interpretation of it. And so did the other styles. If you look closely, the first green jacket episodes still show some of Monkey Punch's first style's features. This influence faded away after Miyazaki's arrival.

Did it really? I think you're letting Miyazaki's later Lupin works paint your idea of his Green Jacket output. Miyazaki's sedated, family-friendly style wasn't set in stone back then; not to mention, he had Takahata by his side, a guy who tends to be more open to artistic experimentation. As a result, his Green Jacket episodes did have a tendency for Monkey Punch-esque loose, off-model drawings, the kind that you'd never see in Cagliostro or his Red Jacket episodes:

http://i.imgur.com/8uhNhiT.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/9OjlU9J.jpg

I think what people are missing is that you can't be "Monkey Punch-like" if you're just copying Monkey Punch's drawings, unless you're doing an outright panel-by-panel adaptation and using the manga as a storyboard (something no Lupin anime has ever done). Why is this? Because a big chunk of what defines being "Monkey Punch-esque" is messing around with the designs, deforming them and inventing new wacky expressions depending on the scene.

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The first episodes of red jacket had a lot of "lupin III new adventures" in their designs and the Pink Jacket first episodes were straight of the "Shin Lupin III" series.
...you're really trying to downplay the second, 'controversial' part of Pink Jacket and its similarities to Monkey Punch drawings, aren't you?

Come on now! Yuzo Aoki's style is Monkey Punch as HELL. And it's PARTICULARLY similar to the style of the last volume of normal Lupin (check the Tumblr post linked in the OP for examples) and that of Shin Lupin/World's Most Wanted:

http://i.imgur.com/VBiQ4bu.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/ou44rby.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/QuguP16.png
http://i.imgur.com/FtGrGbl.jpg

compare to...

http://i.imgur.com/iHjGJc2.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/buk9veL.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/jNnkmS6.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/BG7jGZf.jpg

This is it. The idea of drawing loosely and creating funny poses and expressions on the spot to fit the situation is a far bigger part of being "MP-like" than copying his normal character models on a surface level. There's a reason why they had Yuzo Aoki direct Monkey Punch no Sekai: Alice. Imagine Alice being designed, directed and drawn by the Fujiko staff; that would be crazy!

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Part III and Babylon did a great job of trying to reinterpret or reimagine bringing MP's artistic zaniness in design to the screen without copying his style verbatim, and I'd hardly call it a 1:1 adaptation. Fujiko took a similar approach: take the general "look" of Monkey Punch's original art and give it movement without looking like an exact stylistic  copy.  It's not 1:1 either, but it's much, much closer than Castle of Cagliostro, for instance. Also, like MP's manga, it probably has the biggest nudity:total runtime ratio of any of the anime installments (unless Mamo or Twilight Gemini outdoes it).

Once again, I disagree completely about Fujiko. It's about as far away from being Monkey Punch-like as Cagliostro, the only really difference being the aforementioned sketchiness which is vastly different from Monkey Punch sketchiness anyway.

Neither Pink Jacket nor Fujiko aimed to really adapt the Lupin manga as far as the base designs go. If we went by that standard, certain Green or Red episodes probably fit the bill far more. But I think Fujiko is particularly far from being stylistically similar because it's serious, stiff, pseudo-realistic and hyper-detailed. Practically the polar opposite as far as the emotional core of the style goes. And Babylon/certain Pink Jacket episodes are particularly close to being Monkey Punch-like because they play around with the designs, pose them and make them emote in a very, very similar manner.

I honestly don't understand the comparisons between Monkey Punch art and Fujiko, they still confuse the crap out of me to this day. The only real similarities are also present, and far more obvious, in all three of the past TV series, and Pink Jacket is the only series that regularly tried to replicate Monkey Punch's sheer artistic playfulness to a huge extent

I probably sound like a huge smug jerk now but I can't really think of any other way to get across my sheer confusion through text.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2014, 09:18:11 pm by busterbeam »

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2014, 01:30:12 pm »
I think it's not a good choice of angle when speaking of style accuracy to think that a comic book/manga style
can be perfectly translated in animated form for the simple reason one is immovable and the other in motion.

And let's be honest, Monkey Punch's first graphic style is almost impossible to create not only because of the scribblyness but also because it was extremely inconsistent, not necesseraly in terms of quality mind you, but in terms of making the characters look 3-dimensional.

An animated style must be simple enough so that animators can do their job with the most efficiency and consistent so that the audience can recognize the characters and understand what's going on.

The pilot design was indeed very close to the manga but also took some choices and liberties to make it easier to animate and enjoyable to watch.

The Mine Fujiko to Iu Onna is the same in many respects because it did not make use of a previous animated style from the Lupin franchise (to the notable exception of the green jacket style, of course) and was a product of Takeshi Koike's own interpretation of Monkey Punch's original style as well as the one he used for the Shin Lupin III manga series.

The facial features, the clothes folding, the proportions, they all scream Monkey Punch !

But what is true is that some stylistic choices in terms of cinematography and shading are not very manga-esque and a more of a manifestation of the gothic-noir mood of the series.

But as the new Jigen film shows, the same style holds up pretty well with a different color palette and a different shading technique.

So, as much as I respect your opinion, busterbeam, I do not share it for all the reasons I exposed earlier.

Again, Monkey Punch had many different styles (at least five in the last four decades) and there is no animated style that is completely true to the manga but Koike's has the merit to take its most of its inspiration directly from the source and not from the second TV series or the Cagliostro movie.
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mikezilla2

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2014, 03:35:48 pm »
stop teasing me with scans of something i cant read .........

busterbeam

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2014, 02:10:38 am »
To be completely honest? My theory is that the reason people claim Fujiko is particularly similar to the manga is because they don't want to give credit to the "controversial" Monkey Punch no Sekai: Alice and the Pink Jacket season. People who hadn't even read the manga decided long ago that those works are 'objectively bad' and have 'disgusting, poorly drawn art', and people who read the manga are afraid to challenge that opinion because it's so well-engrained in the 'old school anime fan' conscious.

Well, I can't be 100% sure of this; I'm just taking a shot in the dark. I'm still confused to no end.

stop teasing me with scans of something i cant read .........

Would it be ok to post a Mediafire link? I mean, the English release has been discontinued and a guy from 4chan scanned multiple volumes of the first series.....

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I think it's not a good choice of angle when speaking of style accuracy to think that a comic book/manga style
can be perfectly translated in animated form for the simple reason one is immovable and the other in motion.

But the Fujiko anime barely had any motion.

Quote
And let's be honest, Monkey Punch's first graphic style is almost impossible to create not only because of the scribblyness but also because it was extremely inconsistent, not necesseraly in terms of quality mind you, but in terms of making the characters look 3-dimensional.

Pink Jacket at its best did the 'wacky inconsistency' aspect just fine.

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An animated style must be simple enough so that animators can do their job with the most efficiency and consistent so that the audience can recognize the characters and understand what's going on.

Why do the models need to be consistent? It's very easy to tell the characters apart in the manga and the art isn't consistent at all. There are plenty of anime that radically shift the construction of the characters all the time and are perfectly readable; see Mind Game and Hiroyuki Imaishi's Abenobashi episodes. Or the aforementioned Pink Jacket season.

Actually it should be EASIER to tell the characters apart in anime because you have colors!

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The pilot design was indeed very close to the manga but also took some choices and liberties to make it easier to animate and enjoyable to watch.

I think it was a bit more downplayed because the type of super-wacky anime production seen in the 80s pink jacket series simply didn't exist back then and things had to have more consistent art; the pilot is from the late 60s after all.

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The Mine Fujiko to Iu Onna is the same in many respects because it did not make use of a previous animated style from the Lupin franchise (to the notable exception of the green jacket style, of course) and was a product of Takeshi Koike's own interpretation of Monkey Punch's original style as well as the one he used for the Shin Lupin III manga series.

..........what? As far as I can tell the only similarities you can trace between the Lupin manga and the Fujiko anime, as small as they are, is stuff from the first series. The occasional more 'serious'-looking' scenes where the characters were a bit more 'anime' in their look. They weren't quite the same, but I don't see how Shin Lupin/World's Most Wanted looks more similar. If anything that series is even cartoonier.

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The facial features, the clothes folding, the proportions, they all scream Monkey Punch !

Seriously?




The proportions in the 70s and 80s anime TV series are way more Monkey Punch-like than the proportions in Fujiko. I don't see how the clothing folds are super-similar.
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But what is true is that some stylistic choices in terms of cinematography and shading are not very manga-esque and a more of a manifestation of the gothic-noir mood of the series.

The character art is most overtly different part!





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Again, Monkey Punch had many different styles (at least five in the last four decades) and there is no animated style that is completely true to the manga but Koike's has the merit to take its most of its inspiration directly from the source and not from the second TV series or the Cagliostro movie.

But it's really obvious a lot of its art decisions come from shoujo/josei aesthetics.

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So, as much as I respect your opinion, busterbeam, I do not share it for all the reasons I exposed earlier.

I truly believe there's some level of objectivity when it comes to opinions on art styles. If someone says "Doraemon is very stylistically similar to a Rembrandt painting", that would be really odd and they'd have to provide some type of in-depth comparison for the opinion to make any sense.

All of your points are things that just don't really make sense at all given the images I've provided and the points I've made. You've said that the constantly-off-model, crazy art of the manga simply can't work in animation; by that time, though, I'd already given two examples of anime adaptations of Monkey Punch works getting pretty close to doing just that (Monkey Punch no Sekai, the second half of Pink Jacket). You've made a lot of vague comments like "the Fujiko style is undiluted by outside influences beyond the original material" or "these elements SCREAM Monkey Punch!" but not provided any real proof; it's purely a statement with nothing to really back it up. Meanwhile, I've provided evidence of everything I've said; hell, I'm the one who made the post that OP linked, so the thread literally started with my visual examples!

I don't want to sound like I'm getting super-angry at you or something but as someone who cares a lot about comic/cartoon aesthetics I'm just really confused by your opinion, and after your new post I just got even more confused.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2014, 02:39:28 am by busterbeam »

Red Dear

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #11 on: June 10, 2014, 12:26:18 pm »
I freely admit Koike's Zenigata and Goemon are very far from their manga counterparts, all styles considered.

Still, the majority of the examples you're using in your second explanatory post are from the second manga series while most of Kike's style is based on the first, wackier style from 1967-69. Jigen and Fujiko more closely resemble the Shin Lupin III manga style. For Fujiko, it's quite obvious since she wasn't even a single character in the 1960's manga but a bunch of different women all bearing the same nickname. Her Shin design was a lot more defined.

I'm afraid I don't have the time to look in my Lupin databank to illustrate my point but here's a promotional art from Koike:



In this picture, Lupin is clearly of Monkey Punch inspiration, the pose, the facial expression etc.

Another example, the design production sheet:



Some of those facial expressions come directly from the late 60's manga.

And this is where I would like to nuance my previous statement. I continue to say Koike is the one (with the part III animators) that really captured the essence of Monkey Punch's wackiness and energy.

But, the actual Mine Fujiko series does not show the complete range of that style in its animation or cinematography and that's where the nuance is. Indeed, most of the awesome faial expressions of the production sheets aren't used in the actual anime.

When I'll be back from my holiday, I might make a more consistent post with more visual examples to further illustrate my view on the subject.

Again, I see your point, I respect your argumentation and you helped me giving some balance in my own opinion but I don't think no Sekai Alice or the pink jacket series "hate" are responsible for the credit given to Koike's design. It is just another intepretation of the source material with a distinct flavour while being closer to the manga style than most animated styles (to the exception of the pink jacket episodes and the likes of Mankatsu).

I hope you see I've modified my opinion a bit and that I have in no way critized your opinion or methods in a harmful or disrespectful way.
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busterbeam

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #12 on: June 10, 2014, 03:00:31 pm »
Quote
Still, the majority of the examples you're using in your second explanatory post are from the second manga series while most of Kike's style is based on the first, wackier style from 1967-69. Jigen and Fujiko more closely resemble the Shin Lupin III manga style. For Fujiko, it's quite obvious since she wasn't even a single character in the 1960's manga but a bunch of different women all bearing the same nickname. Her Shin design was a lot more defined.
I wouldn't say MP's older art was necessarily 'wackier', I'd say it just got more solid over time and the off-model stuff became more carefully controlled.

Koike's normal style is far, far more anatomical than Monkey Punch's art, his primary influences being people like Frank Miller and Peter Chung. As for the Lupin stuff, well... the drawings you posted ARE very Monkey Punch-esque, no argument there. They're also much cartoonier than what Koike normally draws; the only time Koike's older anime has ever looked that wacky is when Hiroyuki Imaishi took over in Trava episode 2. But I'm talking about the show itself, not the promotional material, and it seems that we both agree that the actual series barely ever looked anything like that.

I guess the manga designs can be compared to SOME of Monkey Punch's more 'normal' character drawings, but even then, those were still pretty inconsistent. From what I recall, Lupin's chin is normally bigger and less pointy than how Koike drew it. This is probably because they wanted to make him more handsome than goofy; which, once again, is not a very Monkey Punch-like choice.

I agree with you about Koike himself. The expressions and poses there are definitely very, very Monkey Punch-like, and it's clear the dude analyzed the manga before making those drawings. You don't have to further prove this point. In fact... that first drawing... he practically COPIED it straight from the manga!



But once again, I'm talking about the show itself, and we both agree that it never got as wacky as those drawings implied. Even the rare comic relief moments were kinda subdued.

I don't really give that much regard to the 'designs' of the 60s manga (which is what Koike seems to have based his drawings on) because they honestly come across less as 'designs' in the traditional sense and more just... general outlines for what a character should look like, if that makes sense. They change so much depending on the scene, and even the aforementioned general outline constantly evolves along with Monkey Punch's style. The Lupin design that MP seems to have eventually settled on, after years and years of stylistic and design changes, is definitely very different from Koike's Lupin. Here are some 80s manga drawings:







Note the square chin; it looks totally different from the pointy chin that Lupin has in Fujiko. It's also pretty similar to how the character was built near the end of the 60s series and in Shin/World's Most Wanted. All the scans in my Tumblr post in the OP are taken from the final volume of the 60s manga.

And this is why I don't think Fujiko, the anime itself, is closer to the manga's style than other Lupin anime works; some of Koike's drawings definitely are, but not the show. The crazier-looking episodes of Red Jacket and Green Jacket definitely come closer, because they use much looser posing and expressions and as a result are more reminiscent of Monkey Punch's visual language. Hell, the TV series even used super-cartoony art during some of the serious scenes. Remember the sad Red Jacket episode where Zenigata falls in love? Some of the most serious scenes in that episode were animated by freakin' Yuzo Aoki, the Pink Jacket guy!

Actually, some of the Lupin designs in Red Jacket (they varied depending on the animation director....) are actually pretty similar to Monkey Punch's "definitive" Lupin design from the 70s and 80s: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xHqbAum39ME And once again, note the MP-like posing and expressions.

mikezilla2

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #13 on: June 10, 2014, 05:42:31 pm »
not srue but sent you a PM busterbeam

fryguy81

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Re: More true to the manga?
« Reply #14 on: June 11, 2014, 07:58:49 am »
I wouldn't say more true, But i have been reading the original Lupin manga and found AWCFM to be very reminiscent of the earlier work done. I know the art style changed as it went along but in the early stories but Lupin's pointy chin and the background art I especially found evocative in comparing to the Fujiko series. Specifically the first three tales in the manga.

One could argue, I think, that it's meant to be closer (closer not exact) to the early manga look due to it's place in the continuity of Lupin.

I want to ask (a tad off topic but curiosity and all).

What was the overall impression everyone got from Fujiko. I've only finished the first two episodes and the DVD's just came in but I was impressed with the serious tone, the art style was phenomenal, and I thought the Lupin character wasn't changed.

That's Zenigata, truly the ideal of the Shoowa Period. A man incomparable for his determination to his work.
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