Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt Review
SPOILERS ALERT!! And remember, reviews, thoughts, and retrospectives are all subjective and based on opinion. Everyone is entitled to their own and do not harp on others for theirs.
Hello, I’m BreakSlash, breaking down media to reveal their flaws. Ladies and gentlemen. We have a big review today. It’s an anime. It’s crazy as fuck. It’s Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt.
Ahem. The studio, called Gainax in Japan, has certainly produced some interesting shows. These are the guys who helped produce He Is My Master, Gurren Lagann, Neon Genesis Evangelion, Corpse Princess, Re: Cutie Honey, and FLCL. We range from the critically acclaimed Evangelion to the insanely bizarre FLCL. And when Japanese animators start using South Park style animation, you have some of the strangest yet most awesome stuff I have ever seen.
That is, until I found Panty and Stocking. Where to begin? I mentioned South Park so… South Park is Pokemon compared to this show. Oh yeah. I went there. The most controversial show in America being outdone by an Anime. Well actually that doesn’t surprise me. Our mature content is their child friendly stuff. And Japan’s mature stuff would have the MPAA and the TV Parental Guidelines going purely insane. As some people are quite aware, the Japanese actually respect their children’s competence and let them watch what they want. Censorship there is like trying to wash a car’s window while you’re in a car wash. It isn’t necessary. Though their video games are a different story. It’s the reverse there as they censor decapitation for Resident Evil 4 while we didn’t have any of that… I have no idea why censorship is like that.
Any who, some of what Japan’s content for their Anime includes guns, alcohol, blood, more detail towards women body parts (Da boobs numb nuts) and English writing… strangely enough as some Anime in America removes writing with either gibberish or nothing at all. As far as I remember, Kirby: Right Back at Ya had an entire episode removed because the monster in it, the “Devil Frog,” had the Devil in its name. Yeah… America and its ratings systems are kinda a pussy in that sense.
And that is just for the kiddies! When they actually do mature content that is, well, mature in their eyes, holy shit do they go balls out. That’s where Panty and Stocking come up. It’s a thirteen (fourteen if you count a shorts part) about two angels that got kicked out of heaven for misbehavior and get sent to Daten City (a play on Fallen Angel if my research is correct). So now the two have to earn Heaven Coins to get back. How do they do that? They eliminate the series enemies called Ghosts. Hell, just send in the Ghostbusters. They’ll solve things in a few days or so.
Let’s talk about the two main characters, Panty and Stocking. You think that they’ll be nice, holy girls, right? WRONG. These two girls would have feminists outraged for wanting sex, sex, sex, sex, and sex. Oh, did I forget about sex? Panty, the blonde in the red, is absolutely obsessed with sex. Is it wrong for me to think of Ada Wong at this point? As Jack Krauser put it, “Well, if it isn’t the bitch in the red dress.” Can you guess what she uses as a weapon? Her panties! They turn into guns! Glad that real girls don’t have weapons like that. The minute she doesn’t like a guy when she’s taking off her panties and there’s a bullet in his crotch. Speaking of sex, I think her goal was 1000 guys she wanted to screw. Now that’s a goal, right fellas? And her standards are apparently low. Quite low. Slow low to the point where she’ll go for policemen, plumbers, football jocks, and random guys off the street. Yeesh.
Then we have Stocking, the gothic sister of Panty. Her weapons are her stockings that she turns into a katana. You know, I’m surprised they didn’t go with Bra with her name. Isn’t that a name in Dragon Ball or something? Anyways, her gimmick isn’t sex all the time (though she was a thing for bondage, electrocution, and the like), but sweets. She’s like a bottomless pit. Literally. She can eat tubs of sweets three times her size and they don’t even affect her size at all. Though she says they go to her breast, in a way to tease her sister. Don’t look at me! That was an argument they had in an episode!
And don’t forget about the supporting cast. There’s Chuck, who is almost identical to Gir from Invader Zim. While Gir is just extremely funny for being stupid, Chuck is played for slapstick humor. And by slapstick I mean he gets the living shit kicked out of him in every episode he is in. Garterbelt is a black reverend that helps the Anarchy sisters (Panty and Stocking) in redemption back to Heaven. Oh, and he’s homosexual. Let the comical hijinks commence when Brief comes into play (Gay, black reverend of a church. I have no comment.) Brief, like Chuck, is beaten, maimed, and among other things violated during the course but helps the sisters many times.
And then there’s two of the most popular characters I’ve heard from the show. Scanty and Kneestocks. They are in fact the villains of the series, besides the Ghosts. Like the angels, they have a pet dog like thing called Fastener. They are alike just Fastener is more competent. The two are demon sisters who are as equally obsessed with rules as Panty is with sex. Scanty is the counterpart to Panty. She uses revolvers as weapons. She’s the crazier one out of the demon sisters. Kneestocks is the counterpart towards Stocking. She uses scythes and she’s the more… controlled one of the two. Why are these two characters liked so much? There is SO much to pick apart from these two.
They are exact opposites of the heroes, Panty and Stocking. They are set on rules and following them. They have morals (as far as this show goes), which is priceless because they are demons, which isn’t seen very often to begin with. Instead of clashing against each other like the Anarchy sisters, they form a much stronger team. And the other reason is that they… err… have… well… it’s implied that they love each other. Incest. It’s implied at the very least. But good god everyone started drawing such incestuous fan art that it’s hard to go on a site like DeviantART and not find it. Hell, Panty and Stocking have the same problem. Just not to the degree the demon sisters do. D.C. Confidential blew my mind quite a bit.
So how does it look? Actually, there are several designs for the show. The “regular” one resembles American animation. I don’t know if this is really clever or just an attempt to poke fun of American culture. Yeah, Americans are totally more sex crazed than Japan is. Right. Nice try Gainax. You know the strange thing? The art resembles the Powerpuff Girls a lot. Even though Lauren Faust wasn’t the original creator, I wonder what she would say if she saw Pant and Stocking? I bet she would somehow make it even crazier than it is now.
Like I said, the show doesn’t have one set drawing style. It has several. The second most notable is the actual Anime design when the Anarchy sisters (and demon sisters) transform. And occasionally there will be Anime styles when the angels are acting sensual or an endearing moment. Yes, there are rather touching moments, despite the… vulgar spirit of the show. The other style is of puppets. Or models. Not exactly sure. This style is only used when Ghosts are properly destroyed. Oh wait! I forgot about the last one. But you have to watch the very end to find that one out.
The music for the show is absolutely fantastic. It’s mostly dance but it’s be hard to not enjoy it. Though I do find it strange that the music is all in English and the actually dialogue is in Japanese, which uses a little of English terms as well. And the show isn’t aired in America by normal means. What sense does this make? I don’t know. By for my favorite two themes are Fly Away, the transformation theme for Panty and Stocking and Theme for Scanty and Kneestocks. The two just match so well with the show and the transformation scenes.
Now that you know who the characters are and how the show feels (visual wise), let’s discuss the content of the show. Holy fuck there’s a lot to dive into. The very first episode has the angels fighting a Ghost who uses shit to fight. Cue the Great Mighty Poo song! But… that’s not the most vulgar ghost out there. One episode has a Saving Private Ryan feel to it. Dealing with sperm. Yeah, the sperm are the soldiers trying to get to freedom but are stopped by tissues. Hey! I told you this show was crazy as fuck. And hey, you’re vocabulary will be even broader than before. By broader, I mean your mother will rip your lips and tongue out. Despite this site being open to certain curse words, I don’t think I need to list them. That’s the show’s job. And don’t go blaming me, saying I didn’t warn you. Just saying.
So besides having content that the creators of South Park would turn their heads at, the show itself is pretty straightforward, or as straight as you can get with this level of vulgarity. The angels try to collect Heaven Coins to get back to Heaven. But it also has a deeper plot to it when the demon sisters come into play.
At first, the show is just… silly. Though that may be an understatement. Mostly ludicrous. Ah, that’s a better word. But… surprisingly, there are very serious moments in the show too. For instance, Panty and Stocking were at one point fighting with one another starting with an empty pudding cup. It starts off moderate but it escalates to them almost killing each other. Funny how the smallest of things can turn friends and family against each other. Then there’s the episode just for Garterbelt. Holy shit, he has had some troubled past. I won’t dare spoil that episode for you. And then the final few episodes. Look them up for yourselves. I was very surprised what direction Gainax went with.
Are there problems with the show? Well how do I put it? It’s not for everyone. For me? I love this series. And there aren’t a lot of series I consider “loved” to begin with. I love the insane shit that happens. But I don’t think everyone else will. Like I said, it’s vulgar. Not to the point where it becomes hentai. But damn is it close. Panty fucks guys in pretty much every episode. And it isn’t off screen. It’s on a lot. Just, cleverly hid so it could be aired. You’ll be learning new vocabulary as I mentioned. And it touches on very touchy topics. A gay black reverend after little boys, sex, incest (implied at the least), shit, bondage, and among other things. And it’s played for laughs most of the time. It’s rare to see quiet, peaceful moments. And some may even turn their nose at Panty and Stocking because it’s an Anime. But fuck it. It’s still awesome.
Final thoughts? Panty and Stocking is probably one of the craziest things you will find to watch. It’s a show where its creators go as far as they can go without going over the boarder line. If you aren’t a fan of Anime, then this show may be up your alley anyways. It pokes fun of both American and Japanese animation. Currently, Season 1 is over, but rumors and hints have been tossed about. Unfortunately, it has yet to be aired or dubbed for American viewing. Gee, I wonder why? But you can easily find subbed episodes on Youtube or find a copy of the show in Japan or something. I found material, so you can too.
Final Verdict: Epic craziness of vulgarity. A very nice change of pace towards the very numbed, watered down crap we have in America and even the edited Anime we can get. It may be a little bit too far out for others, but I love it nonetheless (very few series I love as I added). Totally worth a watch if you’re curious.