Cyberpunk Review » Cyber City Oedo 808

January 18, 2006

Cyber City Oedo 808

Year: 1990

Directed by: Yoshiaki Kawajiri

Written by: Akinori Endo (writer), Jyuzo Mutsuki (story)

IMDB Reference

Degree of Cyberpunk Visuals: Medium

Correlation to Cyberpunk Themes: Medium

Rating: 6 out of 10

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Overview: Cybercity, directed by the same guy who did the Marathon sequence in the Animatrix, is a pretty fun, but dated cyberpunk anime from 1990 that centers on 3 ultra-tough criminals who agree help the police kill the bad guys. They get these explosive collars installed (see above) and are given time limits for each mission - if they exceed the time limit - BOOM! There goes their head!

There are three stories on the DVD that I have - each centering on one of the three heroes. The stories aren’t that bad, and some of the animation is fairly decent considering the time. LOTS of shots have the US 80s cartoon look, but every now and then, you find some pretty cool cyberpunk visuals thrown in the mix. Here’s a sampling of some of the better visuals:

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This guy stayed alive simply to get revenge on someone…

 

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They even have a vampire villian episode!

 

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There’s an evil cat that pops out of one of these who tries to kill our transvestite hero.

 

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Your everyday average cyborg factory…

 

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And of course, a criminal attempting to take his collar off…Good thing he wasn’t one of the main characters!

 

The Bottom Line: Again, nothing spectacularly breathtaking from either a visual, story, or philosophical standpoint, but this is clearly a decent low-budget attempt. Give it a try if you’ve got nothing better to watch. By the way, if someone knows where I can get the rest of the shows (assuming there were any), please let me know, as I’ve only seen the first three.

 

~See movies similar to this one~

This post has been filed under Made for TV, Man-machine Interface, 6 Star Movies, Animes, Cyberpunk movies from 1990 - 1999 by SFAM.

Comments

January 25, 2006

Ali said:

Cyber City was simply a 3 part OVA if I remember correctly. Also if you haven’t already I suggest watching Dubbed version as it makes the anime 10X more humorous.

SFAM said:

Yep - I have a 3 part OVA, but I thought there were more episodes floating around. And geeze! I dunno if I’m brave enough to try it with dubbing. That sounds more scary than funny, but perhaps I’ll give it a go. Thanks! :)

April 11, 2006

Ryan said:

I love cyber city but the thing is i dont know were to get the videos i got the first one and it kicks ass. :) much betta than fire tripper (that sucks by the way) to tell the truth i like it betta than goght in the shell

SFAM said:

Hi Ryan, welcome to cyberpunkreview :)

I don’t know that I’d agree that they’re in the ballpark of Ghost in the Shell, but yeah, CyberCity definitely has its charm. I don’t know where to get the follow-on episodes either, assuming they’re even in production. I’d love it if someone could tell me.

June 12, 2006

Net said:

I agree, you _have_ to see it dubbed english, soo super funny!
Mebbe you can make a section on “Great cyber-trash”! :D

August 7, 2006

Adam Doub said:

I’m very happy to see this made it onto the reviews as it is somewhat of a forgotten classic. I think I should start by stating that they just don’t make anime like they used to. This series has a tried-and-failed plot involving explosive collars that are set to detonate if the criminal wearing it did not complete a series of investigations, etc (ok, for those on-their-toes movie buffs Battle Royale, though not cyberpunk, is the true king of this explosive collar concept) It’s a great concept and it even plays out pretty well, it’s just a shame there were only 3 OAVs ever produced. I noticed up above some people mentioned the english DUB. Ok, while I’m usually pretty much to my guns on watching original language versions only of foreign films, I will state that the english DUB of Cybercity Oedo has a real added grittiness to it.
Bruce Martin’s version of our OAV ep. 1 protagonist ‘Sengoku’ is absolutely right on (I’m guessing you used to be a sailor Bruce? Somehow I doubt this you can go through his average day without saying fuck at least 60 times in the mirror before leaving out to work, am I right?) Well, it’s fun, see the dubbed or the subbed, either way you get the same basic deal… only the english version would not be something to watch when there are any young ones in the house.

September 18, 2006

Angela Syunsuke said:

I Think that Cyber City is Infinitely Better than Ghost in the Shell!

WRONG!!! you MUST see Cyber City in the Subtitled Version. Sheesh! All that flippin’ Cussing in the Engilsh Version may be funny to you, But i find it to be a Mockery to the anime for crying out loud! Further more, The Engilsh voice actors don’t even know what they’re doing! Their voices don’t even match the Greatness of the Japanese voice actors! Look at sengoku-chan, In the English version he calls varsus varsas!! And another thing you People should know before i leave this Site, I really am 12 years old Going on 13 and a proud fan of Cyber City Oedo 808. anyway, I gotta go! Bye Bye!

September 19, 2006

SFAM said:

Thanks for stopping by Angela. I certainly agree that the only reason you listen to the dubbing on this is for comic relief. But, um, allow me to disagree strongly that this is better than Ghost in the Shell. :)

October 18, 2006

Random_H said:

Cyber City Oedo 808 is great, one of my favorite cyberpunk anime series - very visually appealing. Kawajiri definetly doesn’t get enough respect in my book. Bubblegum Crisis, AD Police, Armitage, fine stuff, but I prefer Cyber City.

November 9, 2006

Joules said:

Everyone asking has probably found out by now, but the CCO808 DVD is available here (UK) or here (US). I first saw the series (subbed) on the Sci Fi channel in 1994 and have been a Benten addict ever since (so much so that I’ve just bought the second CCO808 illustrated novel - in Japanese, which I can’t read…)
I’m glad there are still people who like the anime, even if it is rather old now!

November 11, 2006

SFAM said:

Hi Joules, we can get the first three episodes, but what about the rest?

November 13, 2006

Joules said:

Hi SFAM.

Only three anime episodes were ever made, unfortunately. There are three novels, but the stories are quite different, and as far as I know they’ve never been translated into English.

SFAM said:

Thanks Joules. This explains why I can never find the additional episodes! :)

Ah, well. That’s a bummer. The three out are pretty decent though.

November 17, 2006

Joules said:

Welcome. Believe me, I was incredibly pissed off myself - it would have made a fantastic series!

January 1, 2007

a fan of cyberpunk visuals said:

This is a somewhat underrated series. I really enjoyed it. Of course, I’m not surprised, because I’ve never seen a Kawajiri work that I did not like.

True, it doesn’t do anything groundbreaking, but it’s definitely a solid, above-average series. No real flaws as far as I’m concerned. One of my favorites.

March 29, 2007

David said:

In the first OVA we see that there are three characters under the control of the police. You then find out it’s a three part series, so you know that if Son Goku has hd his 30 mins, then Benten and Gogul will get their’s ;)

I love these anime that date back to the late 80s, preppy 90s, that created this psuedo-2000s technolodgy, that now looks daft when you watch it now, and say to yourself- ‘well, we’re in the year 1997 now, and the world hasn’t been dominated by skynet net.’

SFAM said:

Hi David, I really wish there were more of these. 3 parts is just not enough!

May 13, 2007

Spanky said:

I have two versions of the series, the Japanese language one with english subtitles and the English dubbed version.
For me having seen the english dubbed version first(many times) the Japanese version added much to the story and answered many of my questions about the plot and the interaction of the characters with one another.
I’m used to cheesy Japanese ballads :D so I was delighted to discover the original score was still left on the Japanese version :)
However as much as I appreciate the Japanese soundtrack, I much prefer the dubbed version’s soundtrack as it lends a huge amount of atmosphere to the episodes.
I have heard elements of this dubbed soundtrack, especially from the last episode, in many TV shows here in the UK, particulary on Channel 4 for some reason, be it nature, documentary, investigative etc and I know instantly that the score composer has been watching CCO 808 :D LOL
It’s still a beautiful soundtrack for an anime after all these years. :)

Spanky said:

BTW Joules, your remark above
quote -
“There are three novels, but the stories are quite different, and as far as I know they’ve never been translated into English.”

has reminded me that I promised myself that I would try to get Benten’s book professionally or semi professionally translated even if it was only slowly due to the costs involved.

If I do I’ll see if I can post it on the livejournal CCO 808 site, if I’m allowed :)

Spanky said:

Can anyone recommend a site or someone who would be willing to do the transaltion?
Ideally I want someone who is sympathetic to anime/manga.

May 15, 2007

slawa.cap said:

Hello.I found this movie before week.But I have Japanese version.Have anybody english subtitles?? Please mail me it.

May 18, 2007

Spanky said:

Hi Slawa.cap,
there are many DVD’s for sale on ebay, you can pick up a subtitled one or an english dubbed one for an excellent price, second-hand or new.

Alternatively you can have a look around at some of the older links and posts at the
http://community.livejournal.com/ccoedo808/

It’s a Cyber City Oedo 808 fan site, at livejournal.com, that is still going.
It has lots of excellent links and bits of information about the series and many contributions by the fans

June 9, 2007

Joules said:

If you do find someone and manage to get them translated, please could you let me know? I’d absolutely LOVE to have the translations!

Fingers crossed…

Cheers

Joules said:

PS - I’m a member of the CCO808 Lj community and am pretty certain that the owner would be very happy to allow it - but if not, I’d be delighted to host it on my own site and post a link to the Lj.

July 1, 2007

PSY said:

I have not seen Cyber City in the longest time! It was one of the first anime I ever saw so I have fond memories of it. I’m sure if I saw it for the first time today I would not think so highly of it as I do, but hey. That’s nostalgia for you!

July 15, 2007

Burnt_Lombard said:

I just recently discovered this. I’ve seen bits and peices on youtube and decided to order the DVD.

I never really got into anime, but I’ve been checking into it and really like what I’ve seen from Yoshiaki Kawajiri.

September 6, 2007

Von Buford said:

SFAM!
I can’t believe you only gave this a 6 out of 10! I agree it is not at Ghost in the Shell level, but I just got this DVD after having seen a preview on a VOTOMS VHS (which is another amazing, yet dated, anime). Ok, the OEDO story is not so strong, but it draws you in. But the animation and mechanical design is easily on the level of GITS or Akira. Its got great syth music to go along with it. And a MEDIUM for cyberpunk visuals? Cool gadgets, cars, eyewear, a computer hacker plot in a burgeoning megalopolis. This movie is as cyberpunk as they get! Its like a little Bubblegum Crisis, GITS, Bladerunner with maybe a little Neuromancer vibe. Its like watching the punks from Back to the Future 2 go at it in a Syd Mead painting.
Also the eglish dub with all the cursing is amazing. That is one of the things that made the first Appleseed so fantastic. Hearing Briareos cursing every two seconds adds to the badassness.

Evan T. said:

I can’t believe you only gave this a 6 out of 10! I agree it is not at Ghost in the Shell level, but I just got this DVD after having seen a preview on a VOTOMS VHS (which is another amazing, yet dated, anime). Ok, the OEDO story is not so strong, but it draws you in. But the animation and mechanical design is easily on the level of GITS or Akira. Its got great syth music to go along with it. And a MEDIUM for cyberpunk visuals? Cool gadgets, cars, eyewear, a computer hacker plot in a burgeoning megalopolis. This movie is as cyberpunk as they get! Its like a little Bubblegum Crisis, GITS, Bladerunner with maybe a little Neuromancer vibe. Its like watching the punks from Back to the Future 2 go at it in a Syd Mead painting.
Also the eglish dub with all the cursing is amazing. That is one of the things that made the first Appleseed so fantastic. Hearing Briareos cursing every two seconds adds to the badassness.

September 7, 2007

Evan T. said:

OK ok, i take it back, its NOT on the leval with Akira or GITS, but it is pretty damn good. The Mecha Design is linear, crisp, and excellent. Great quality for an OVA you have to give it that.

October 3, 2007

Rafael said:

THIS MOVIE KICKS ASS

January 4, 2008

m motherby said:

I disagree with the comments on the dubbing .I dont think the japanese voices are independantly recognisable enough compared to the english voiced version.Gogul`s voice is the coolest voice since Darth vader`s .Ghost in the shell is a great film/films and the series is aswell but jeez whats up with the panning city shots and quiet bits.(booorrriiinng )This for myself is where oedo 808 wins , never a slow moment which is how it should be for a set of cyberpunks.

Now, where do we send a petition to get this series resurected .
p.s. forget the ratings decide for yourself thats the only oppinion that matters!

January 8, 2008

Walter "The Grizzly Beast" said:

Hello everybody !

I see that everybody in here likes very much Cyber City Oedo 808 ! That’s very nice !
In my case I adore every cyber punk anime that was ever made including cyber city !
By the way I found guys, if you want them, all the Cyber City MP3 format songs of all the episodes ! I have bought the original soundtrack when i went to Japan !

If you want to watch another great, superb and very good cyberpunk anime evrybody in here should watch: Goku Midnight Eye !

Watch it and then tell me !

Evan T. said:

Grizzly Beast, can you send the mp3’s? I love the opening song and I was trying to find it, and others are good too!

January 9, 2008

Walter "The Grizzly Beast" said:

Hello Evan T !

I send you all my best whishes for this year 2008 ! May everything you want happen during this year. yeah, of course i can send you the MP3’s. No problem !
The file size containing the MP3’s is: 44,4 Mo ! Just for you to know !
I’m sending you the MP3’s right now !
Let me know as soon as you receive them !
Ok ?

I’m waiting your answer Evan T !

Also Evan T, what do you think about what said m motherby on his post of January 4, 2008, that we create and send a petition to get this serie Cyber City Oedo 808 resurected and we could ask also that the creators could make 3 more episodes with the same team that produced the first 3 episodes.

I’m waiting your answer here and on my e-mail address.

Walter “The Grizzly Beast”

Evan T. said:

Sweet! Thanks Grizzly!
I’m all for resurrecting the show! Who knows what the chances might be almost 20 years after it was created? This show has a style all its own. The only thing that I find close is the old Appleseed video and maybe some Bubblegum Crisis, but I have not seen all the cyberpunk animes on my list, so I’m sure I’m missing a few.

The OVA stands very strong as a 3 episode series, however, seeing as each one focuses on a different character. What would be better than a whole series imo, would be a full length feature film, with even more detailed animation, and some 2d cgi added like GITS 2 or something. I’m not sure the exploding collar plot would last more than a few more episodes, but it forms the basis of a really exciting story.

I’ll look for your email in a bit. Thanks Grizzly

January 10, 2008

Walter "The Grizzly Beast" said:

Hello Evan !

Me too i’m in for resurrecting the show !
I would love if they ever make a film about Cyber City Oedo 808 to mik 2D animation and 3D animation like in the last appleseed or like in the new 3 oav of fist of the north star released 2 years ago !
And also do another movie to see and explore the past of the characters and see how they arrived in prison !
What do you think ?

Let me know man !

March 11, 2008

John Vadich said:

I would also like those mp3s, the opening theme mainly.

evan T. said:

Yeah I was after the opening theme from the DVD but for some reason it was not in there. Also, the tracks have strange samples of dialogue inserted all over the place. Not what I expected, but still kind of cool. I just really want that opening track, soo sweet!

July 17, 2008

Walter "The Grizzly Beast" said:

Hello Guys !

I’ve been absent for a long time ! So if you want the Cyber City Oedo 808 UK Original Soundtrack i have all the songs plus the opening song and amv videos that contains sketches of the 3 main characters ! If anybody wants them let me know !

Walter

August 2, 2008

cybotron said:

darn narrow minded wally

January 20, 2009

matt said:

hey man, good to see that someone still has the soundtrack - can you please get in touch so that i could get a copy of all the tracks?

thanks for your help dude!

matt

May 3, 2009

johnny death said:

6/10?!! BLASPHEMY!

June 30, 2009

Dan of Doom said:

Really? They’ve used the soundtrack on other programs? Canyou think of any, i would love to check it out. Got the original score on cd cost me £20 brand new from sweden.

October 13, 2009

Hexxus6 said:

Hi Walter,

Can you put up the music to the UK release

thanks

July 3, 2010

cyberpunk said:

THIS ANIME IS MOST DEFINITELY 10/10. WHOEVER RATED THIS IS A TOTAL RETARD. END OF.

THIS VERY ANIME IS WHAT GOT ME INTO CYBERPUNK…

November 9, 2010

Adam Askov said:

I think OEDO is vastly superior to Armitage III. But animation and story-wise. You really can’t go wrong with Kawajiri. Oedo is every bit as well animated as Ninja Scroll was. I really don’t think the reviewer knows too much about animation. He is probably comparing the show to all the new pseudo-anime CG stuff. Which really isn’t animation at all.

December 4, 2010

Menacer said:

Only 6 stars?? As far as I’m concerned, this is one of the greatest anime mini-series around in the cyberpunk genre. The 2nd episode (the one with the scary-looking cyborg), in particular, is sheer perfection. And yes, watching this with the UK soundtrack is paramount. It makes a huuuuge difference. Giving this title anything less than 8 stars is blasphemy in my opinion.

matt said:

any luck with the sound track Grizzly? - I’d love a copy of it!

March 6, 2011

Alex said:

Yo guys
I just checked the dubbed version: seriously yo shouldn’t be skeptical about it!
Its Great!

March 13, 2011

mahne said:

cybercity oedo 808 is fuckin awesome. One of the best anime I ever had the pleasure to watch. And that’s without watching it dubbed. The dubbed version is even better.

March 30, 2011

PHIL G said:

Just watched CYBERCITY part 1-3 and I personally think its one of the best series Ive watched manga wise good story lines and brill music ,its a shame there wasn’t more episodes released as your left after watching the last episode wanting more story’s & info on the characters ,I my opinion GHOST IN A SHELL is overrated

July 6, 2011

Terramax said:

I agree with those that say it’s silly this got 6/10. This is quintessential cyber-punk. It ticks off every box and does everything with beautiful visuals, a kick arse soundtrack, and entertaining dialog and action.

December 6, 2011

Adam Davies said:

I watched this recently … Definitely has a lot of cyber punk themes, and the premise of having cyber-criminals catching criminals to decrease their sentence is pretty cool.

The final episode in particular; the one with the vampire; had some seriously powerful aesthetic visuals though. The final scene where the transvestite is pushing the coffin out into space for instance …

January 6, 2012

Xylitol said:

I’ve really enjoyed watching Cyber City Oedo 808.
It deserve more than a 6/10 ;)

July 19, 2012

Random said:

@Angela Syunsuke- They’re criminals of course they’re gonna swear

March 4, 2013

olbertus said:

This review lost ALL credibility when it lists “correlation with cyber punk themes and visuals” as “medium”

This is one of the most unabashedly pure cyberpunk works ever made, everything from supercomputers to razor girls to one character slicing lowlife scum with a monomolecular whip. “Medium” my arse, this is the most definitive cyberpunk anime out there aside from GITS. I say this having actively sought out all the examples of the genre but this is one I am now always returning to, it just flat out rocks. Considering the time it was made and the budget for OVA animation its an easy 9/10 as it does wonders within those limitations.

September 15, 2013

Sa7Ke said:

I have recently watched this, and it is amazing. Yes maybe animation is a bit outdated but it has something, and yes soundtrack in a dubbed English version is fantastic it goes tottaly with the movie. My favourite episode is number 2 with scary cyborg.

I would give it 8/10 stars

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