Gunsmith Cats

volume 3 sleeve

Official Blurb:


"Gunsmith Cats, A.D. Vision UK's debut title is the latest offering from esteemed Japanese animator, Kenichi Sonoda. Amongst Anime fans, Sonoda is considered the master of pacy, racy action and super slick graphics - his characters are true life contemporary figures with realistic personalities and some knockout lines. Gunsmith Cats sees all the essential Sonoda ingredients in glorious excess; powerful bitchin'babes, fast and furious action, suffocating suspense, big cars and even bigger guns - Animation like you have never seen it before!"


"Rally Vincent, gun expert and buxom bounty hunter combined and precocious wild-child side-kick Minnie-May Hopkins are the Gunsmith Cats and they make Cagney and Lacey look positively Neanderthal. This nubile and nimble pair are ready to take on Chicago city's diciest and most dangerous criminals provided the price is right. The cats find themselves in deep and dodgy waters when they are forced to infiltrate a gun-running operation. Can the genius gunsters overcome the powerful opposition that heavily outnumbers them? Find out in Gunsmith Cats! Also includes bonus documentary - The making of Gunsmith Cats".

Creator:          Kenichi Sonoda
Director:         Takeshi Mori
Screenplay:       Atsuji Kaneko
Character Design: Kenichi Sonoda
Copyright:        Kenichi Sonoda/Kodansha/VAP/TBS

English VHS version:
Label:            ADV Films
Language:         English language

Volume no.:       1            2            3
Running time:     70 mins      28 mins      30 mins
Certificate:      15           15           15
Catalogue no:     VHSGS/001S   VHSGS/002S   VHSGS/003SD
Price:            £12.99       £12.99       £12.99
Release Date:     July 1996    Oct 1996     9th June 1997
                  episode one includes a 40 minute 'making of' documentary
                  episode 3 has both subtitled and dubbed versions on the same tape

Subtitled VHS version:
Label:            ADV Films
Language:         Japanese language, English Subtitles

Volume no.:       1            2            3
Running time:     70 mins      28 mins      30 mins
Certificate:      15           15           15
Catalogue no:     VHSGS/001D   VHSGS/002D   VHSGS/003SD
Price:            £12.99       £12.99       £12.99
Release Date:     July 1996    Oct 1996     9th June 1997
                  episode one includes a 40 minute 'making of' documentary
                  episode 3 has both subtitled and dubbed versions on the same tape

DVD version:
Includes trailers, credit-free opening and 'The Making of GSC'.
Label:            ADV Films
Language:         English and Japanese with optional English subtitles
Running time:     125 mins
Certificate:      15
Catalogue no:     DGS001
Price:            £19.99
Release date:     8th July 2002


Episode 1:

This consists of GUNSMITH CATS #1 (30m) + a 40 minute documentary on the making of the videos.

GUNSMITH CATS is a 3-part anime series based on the manga by Kenichi Sonoda, and shows Sonoda's fascination with guns and fast cars.

As in the manga, the principal characters are Rally Vincent, young, female gunsmith and bounty hunter and her precocious young associate Minnie May, who is an expert in blowing things up. Featured in the anime are innumerable guns, and Rally's car, a Shelby Cobra (this is a 370hp American muscle car, for those interested in such things).

The whole series is set in Chicago, USA. Rally owns a gunshop and shooting range, and also acts as a bounty hunter. In the first episode she is 'persuaded' by the cops to help with an undercover operation to catch some illegal arms dealers. In the cource of this, a lot of bad guys get shot and a few get blown up.

The anime, unashamedly billed as Girls -Guns- Grenades, is in fact enormous fun. It is a distinct improvement on the manga, which was interesting but looked rather colourless and static.The girls behave toughly and look sexy by turns, and there is plenty of humour and lots of moderately violent action. The well-researched backgrounds of Chicago add much to the look and feel of the animation. It's a pure male fantasy, of course, but none the worse for that. One could probably safely commend this to any young men interested in girls, guns, cars and grenades...

The 40-minute documentary includes brief clips from the anime, footage from the animators' research trip to Chicago, interviews with the three decidedly cute Japanese voice actresses, and interviews with Sonoda, and if you are already a fan of GUNSMITH CATS (or have just viewed #1) it will be of considerable interest. [Geoff Cowie]

You see, there's these two women, OK?, and they've got access to all this hardware (as in weapons, not computers), OK?, and everywhere they go there's, like, massive mayhem and destruction with concomitant loss of live, and they're called Kei and Yuri, and the anime/manga or whatever is called Dirty Pair and essentially, apart from minutiae like the location, I couldn't tell the difference between Dirty Pair and Gunsmith Cats and although GC is very professionally done, it's, like, totally uninteresting and just so expensive at £12.99 for ONE 30 minute anime, and, OK, so they put a documentary on the rest of the tape, but, really, who wants to see a documentary when all we really want is anime, anime and more anime!

Not recommended, but you probably guessed that, didn't you? [Marlon A. Seton]

Episode 2:

Another episode in the explosive exploits of Rally Vincent and Minnie May Hopkins. This time they get involved when a Russian gun girl in a bullet proof coat proves more than a match for a police safe house guarding a frightened prisoner. She may prove too much for our heroines too. There's a car chase, of course.

Like the first episode, lots of fun for violent minded boys. [Geoff Cowie]

Comment from newsgroups:

Gene Howard Jones Jr.:
Gunsmith Cats looks great, and sounds great. Sonoda really went all out
with this OVA series. Almost all of the sounds, from the gunshots to the roar
of the Shelby Cobra GT are authentic. I think the storyline is fine. You really
should check out the manga (if you havn't already) before you buy the video,
though. That way, you have a good background of the characters. That should
help you appreciate the story better.

Phil Yff:
Gunsmith Cats is one of the great new series coming out.  I thought the
plot of the first episode was quite good.  In the manga, the plots get very
complex and I expect the same to happen with the anime.  Many anime
series open up with a light tone and then introduce serious emotional
dilemmas later on.  I expect the same to happen with Gunsmith Cats.

That's not to say the plot of the first episode was inconsequential.  It did a
very good job of introducing Rally and Minnie May and showing the
contrast in their personalities.  There is plenty of action and the
background information is provided in the context of the plot.

A purist might demand that the first episode of the anime should be the
same as that of the manga--that's the episode where Rally in deference to
Minnie May saving the day changes the name of her establishment from
Gunsmith Cat to Gunsmith Cats.  (That's why the final 's' on the sign is
amateurishly nailed on at the end.)  Although I liked the episode, I agree
with the producer's decision to start the anime in mid-stream with some
good action and catch up on the background info as necessary.