Oe Kintarou is a twenty-five-year-old college student who just took off one day on his bike, with little more than a journal and a pen and the clothes on his back, wandering Japan in search of ... life.
He runs into various compromising situations with beautiful women, and he must use his unique talents as a jack-of-all-trades to survive, much less have a chance to be close to his dreams. But he is far skilled than he appears, and he is determined to succeed no matter what he does.
Never underestimate the power of lust.
You wouldn't think that a perverted lech would make for a good lead in any series, much less a genuinely likable one. But Kintarou manages anyway in this hopelessly dirty-minded, yet basically good-hearted series that is postpubescent fantasy at its most improbable. In each episode, Kintarou must learn a new skill to survive, whether it be computer programming or swimming or cooking noodles. (Or, in the last episode, animation!) In each episode, he is surrounded by or in close proximity to beautiful women. And he does precisely what guys would do if they had no such thing as self-control. Or common sense!
The funny thing about this series is that, considering the levity of the subject matter, the animation is flat-out gorgeous. The expressions on Kintarou's face, the girls, and well, everything is drawn well, with plenty of detail, and a healthy dollop of gloss to go with the bounce, so to speak. The music's appropriate, and the characterization, as it were, is sufficient - they're not merely bra sizes, anyway. (Besides, usually, the women in this series obviously don't wear bras.)
But for all the fan service (and some outright nudity) in this series, when it comes down to it, the lechery is supposed to be a facade for Kintaro's true feelings of respect and admiration for women. He never actually does anything with them, and some episodes turn out to be really cute (yes, my *wife* said this) by the end. Still utter fantasy, but harmless in the long term.
Golden Boy cuts to the bone of what most men are really thinking when they're pursuing a girl. It's not sensitive. It's not New Age. But it's one-hundred-percent guy, and it's hilariously dead-on.
Except that I'd never stoop to licking toilet seats.
Perverted, silly, and a whole lot of fun. And it even has my spouse's seal of approval. We've got a winner here. — Carlos Ross
Recommended Audience: NOT for kids. The man licks toilets, for crying out loud! There's also a lot of nudity, fan service, and sexual innuendo, though no actual sex. Also a bit of foul language. Mature teens and above would be alright, so long as they're openminded. Though this is clearly intended for a male audience, it should be noted that women may find this insight into the male psyche incredibly funny and maybe a bit vindicating as well. Egawa Tatsuya's manga is, however, FAR less tame.
Version(s) Viewed: VHS, Japanese with English subtitles
Review Status: Full (6/6)
Golden Boy © 1995 Tatsuya Egawa / Shueisha / KSS
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