Cowboy Bebop ★★★★½

I'm finally clearing some "bucket list shows" off, starting with this classic anime.

It's a single 26-episode season (and one movie), so it doesn't take long to get through it.

I did really enjoy it and I see why it is beloved. Great characters, violent badass action sequences, amazing use of music and atmosphere, a lot of humor, and many different surprises along the way as our ship of "cowboys" (bounty hunters) go around looking for bounties.

There are a few small downsides but not many. I think one unfortunate thing is the use of CGI - when it was new in 1998 it probably looked amazing but today it sticks out like a sore thumb, especially in HD. Fortunately there isn't much of it overall but it does.. really scream 1998, haha. I also think the Spike arc was a bit strange, because the show is basically episodic but it needs a Big Bad and an Old Flame too and I really didn't feel like they were.. that well realized? They pop up once or twice and then there's a big showdown at the very end.. like, ok? I also noticed it's not the best show for binging. In the 90's it was weekly and that's just as intended: every episode has weight and feels like a unique and interesting experience, but when you blow through the entire thing in a week, the tonal jumps are pretty jarring at times.

Beyond those small nitpicks, yeah, I thought it was great. I'll check out the movie next, which I can only surmise is a prequel because.. reasons, haha.