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King of Bandit Jing
Jing King of Bandits: Seventh Heaven
Jing King of Bandits:
Seventh Heaven

Anime DVD Review

It's winter and you are stuck indoors; you're grateful for the heat and protection of whatever building you are in but when that time of the day comes, you still rush towards the door and the freezing cold beyond it. You know that first breath of biting cold, sobering, and welcomed air the minute you get over the shock of walking out, being vulnerable, and at the whim of the elements? That's Jing King of Bandits: Seventh Heaven.

King of Bandit JingJing is just a kid but he has the biggest loudest reputation out there. Most people are surprised when he shows up and introduces himself. With a rep like "King of Bandits", one would expect a huge scarred probably bald seedy but handsome looking man. Would you expect a scrawny wisecrack spewing brat with a funny looking foul-mouthed crow parrot mutt following him around? Jing's tiny frame is his biggest asset actually. If anyone is looking for him, they would not be on the lookout for a kid. Unnaturally composed and quick-witted, Jing blends in to his surroundings easily and never lose his cool. He's also physically agile and speedy; no worries here that his mind will think one thing and his body will mess it up.

King of Bandit JingAs for his foul-mouthed crow parrot mutt? That's actually his partner in crime: Kir. Kir isn't exactly smart (he is after all bird-brained) but what makes up for that is his enduring loyalty to Jing. Sarcastic by nature and always talking before thinking, Kir verbalizes everything and nags like a sailor mouthed mother. For all his nagging and complaining though, you see that he really cares about things and deep down inside, he really isn't the lecherous human asshole he pretends to be. Kir and Jing really are perfect partners; when they are in a bind, Kir attaches himself to one of Jing's arms and becomes cannon. That's right; he latches onto Jing's arm and opens his mouth to release a blast of explosive energy that Jing calls the Kir Royale. There is something special with Jing's arm that no one understands and Kir's hot air can react with it to create the Kir Royale. When brains aren't enough to do the job, a big blast of brute strength never hurts.

What I love about this series is visually it's one of the most funny, witty, and mind-tripping anime I've seen in a while. I mean the story is fun, James Bond meets Kingdom Hearts and goes Thomas Crowne on us, and the dialogue is smart, sarcastic, and edgy but the best is still how it appeals to the eyes. It's like Studio Gibli goes on an acid trip, meets Salvador Dali, both go to Sigmund Freud for a session, and then they all go a bar at the end of the day for a case of dessert wine.

King of Bandit JingI mean how else can I explain the strange characters and animals that pop up? The Dali like background and settings that Jing and Kir run through as they are locked in the jail Seventh Heaven or the dream world of Campari? As Jing is transported to Seventh Heaven, the unsavory types that he travels with run the gamut of ugly, grotesque, oddly misshapen humans to talking animals or human like animals but then we have Kir as his sidekick so we don't think anything of it. We look outside and it seems like the jail bus he's on is like the cat bus from Totoro but more demented and probably on something.

Once we get to the jail, we meet the warden and his right hand man: an old shriveled up Bela Lugosi look-a-like and Cupid in his diapers with a machine gun propped up on his shoulders, smoking and has a voice so deep James Earl Jones would be jealous. Forget about all the hilarious gags about the warden and his bats; the Batman references had me ROFLOL.

Of course, once Jing gets there, all the other criminals got to boost up their reputations and show people who's the man. Most of them talk trash but are smart enough not to go toe to toe with Jing; a person doesn't get a title like King of Bandits for nothing after all and it's really embarrassing to be taken down by a kid. The one guy that wasn't too bright decides that he's going to take Jing's lunch; ah, the quintessential bully of school. Jing, of course, dispatches him easily with a roll of baloney and the guy drops on the floor so hard his scalp pops loose from the stitches that held it to the rest of his head and we find out that he replaced his brain with a stash of food and knickknacks that he stole from other people. What? How? Huh?

Don't ask questions; just accept the wonderful wacky world that is called Jing: King of Bandits and enjoy the ride.

Reviewed by Carolyn Whu, November 2010

Below: Scenes from King of Bandit Jing.

King of Bandit Jing

King of Bandit Jing

King of Bandit Jing

King of Bandit Jing

King of Bandit Jing Website Links:

Madman's Official King of Bandit Jing Website

Kasatkia's King of Bandit Jing Website

Stray Bandits (King of Bandit Jing Fan Club) (Japanese)

Jing, King of Bandits (manga) entry at
Anime News Network

Jing, King of Bandits (tv) entry at Anime News Network

Jing, King of Bandits: Seventh Heaven (oav)
entry at Anime News Network

Wikipedia entry for Jing, King of Bandits

King of Bandit Jing

King of Bandit Jing

King of Bandit Jing

King of Bandit Jing

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