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[Nazca box art]
AKA: Jikuu Tenshou Nazca, Dimension Movement Nazca, Dimension Movement of Nazca
Genre: Mythological fantasy adventure
Length: Television series, 12 episodes, 23 minutes each
Distributor: VHS and R1 DVD from Pioneer / Geneon out of print.
Content Rating: 13+ (violence, language, brief nudity)
Related Series: N/A
Also Recommended: Heroic Legend of Arslan, Mysterious Cities of Gold, Yotoden
Notes: Clips of this series were used in the opening sequence of the US sitcom "Malcolm in the Middle".
Rating: Three StarsThree StarsThree Stars

Nazca

Synopsis

The date: today.
The place: modern-day Japan.

Miura Kyoji is a typical student who idolizes his pacifist kendo instructor, Tate Masanari (no, it doesn't rhyme with "bait") - until he suddenly reveals himself to be the reincarnation of the Inca warrior Yawaru. Kyoji turns out to be the reincarnation of Yawaru's mortal enemy, Sergeant Bilko - oops, I mean Bilka (Vilca?), and a whole bunch of other random Japanese people turn out to be really born-again Incans.

(Wow, I thought only Christians could do that.)

After destroying nearby scenery and small towns, the whole cast makes a pilgrimage to Peru to resume a centuries-old war, as Kyoji tries to prevent Tate from repeating the fall of the Inca Empire, while trying to save his soul as well. But can he stop Tate from harnessing the power of Iriyatesse and possibly destroying the world?


Review

"Hi, my name's Takamitsu, but I'm actually the reincarnation of this Inca named Chuyylllzxzizpa."

From the start, Nazca has one of the most unbelievable and inadvertently hilarious premises of all anime. Though some anachronisms are eventually explained away (like the Bach soundtrack being an allusion to Tate's taste for classical), others (such as the Spanish cathedral appearing in shots of pre-colonial Peru) just seem sloppy. For the story's alleged obsession with the Inca culture, the creators really didn't do their homework. And those outfits - if we anime fans could theme a Las Vegas casino around these things, we could make a fortune from visiting Japanese tourists!

Err, sorry about that.

That having been said, Nazca is one of the most unique anime experiences one could possibly imagine, and it's not as bad as you'd think at first glance. The voice acting (in both Japanese and English, I might add) is top-notch, though in the English dub, it should be noted that one of the characters (the guy with glasses) looks and sounds exactly like THEM's own Raphael See, but just a tad more evil. (It's Raph's EVIL TWIN!!!)
Needless to say, we were quite amused by this. (And come on, 'Bilka'?)

The visuals are gorgeous, if not exactly accurate, and the animation would be splendid if the CG effects had meshed in better with the cel style animation. Still, there are a lot of pretty pictures to be had here, and the plot's actually good enough to hold it together. The actual story is less about the retelling of the Inca empire (which, despite the usage of real figures like Atahualpa, is obviously fiction) but the personal struggle between Kyoji, who fights his past, and Tate, who embraces his. Add to the fray Tate's fianc

About as fantastic as fiction can get (in the *fantasy* sense), but richly animated, deliciously angsty, and surprisingly entertaining. The setting, however, is about as authentic to Inca culture as Taco Bell is to Mexican food.Carlos Ross

Recommended Audience: Nazca can get a bit violent, as there are a few action sequences that beat up a lot of the characters, whether with swordplay, magic, or otherwise. An entire town also gets destroyed later in the series. A bit of rough language here and there, and some brief nudity that I really didn't pay attention to, but is warned about on the box. (You tend not to notice these things after a while.) Mature teens and above should be fine, and it should be stated that the age markings Pioneer suggests are _suggestions_. I wouldn't see a problem with older children viewing this, provided, of course, that their parents screen it first.



Version(s) Viewed: VHS, English dub; R1 DVD
Review Status: Partial (3/12)
Nazca © 1998 Genco-Radix / Pioneer LDC / Kadokawa Shoten / TV Tokyo
 
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