LUPIN the Third - Mine Fujiko to Iu Onna

Title:LUPIN the Third - Mine Fujiko to Iu Onna
Lupin III - Mine Fujiko to Iu Onna
Lupin III - The Woman Called Fujiko Mine
Lupin the Third - The Woman Called Fujiko Mine
LUPIN the Third ~峰不二子という女~
Keywords: , , , ,
Notables: Animation - Tokyo Movie Shinsha
KURITA Kanichi
Many people are falling prey to a suspicious new religion. Lupin III infiltrates this group, hoping to steal the treasure their leader keeps hidden. There he lays eyes on the beautiful, bewitching woman who has the leader enthralled. This is the story of how fashionable female thief Fujiko Mine first met Lupin III, the greatest thief of his generation.
(Summary Courtesy of Anime News Network)

13 episode series which premiered on April 4, 2012.
Animated by: TMS Entertainment
Made to commemorate the Lupin III franchise's 40th anniversary.
1:39min Series PV - YouTube Video
[edit] The ↗Lupin III franchise:
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Buy 9 8 8 8 8 8 Ggultra2764 [series:2545#1552]
The Woman Called Fujiko Mine is certainly not standard Lupin III fare. Rather than the comical and over the top antics you would expect of Lupin and his group as they steal and outwit Zenigata, the humor here is more subdued and the series has a darker, more serious and mature feel to it. Fujiko finds herself the main attraction of this series as the first half to this series is prominently focused on her tackling different thefts while encountering Lupin, Goemon and Jigen individually and the second half features the four being caught up in the activity of a mysterious organization that Fujiko appears to have past ties with. The series appears set up as a prequel of sorts considering Jigen and Lupin don't know about one another and team up until later in the show, as well as Goemon hardly interacting with the two in this series. The four do maintain their memorable character traits in this series, though Fujiko tends to get nude quite often in this series and Zenigata is more of a traditional hard-boiled detective in this series than his usual bumbling, Lupin-obsessed comic relief provided in earlier iterations of the franchise. Zenigata also carries in toll a new character in the form of a young assistant named Oscar who is an occasional nuisance in Fujiko's thefts as he tries to apprehend her and has his back story fleshed out in later episodes.

While the first half of this series is standard Lupin III fare, while more prominently focused on Fujiko, the highlight for the series for me comes in the form of its second half which features a more linear storyline when said mysterious organization comes into play. The group have their identities concealed in bird masks and apparently have some type of mysterious past connection with Fujiko. This particular story element is quite effective in messing with one's perceptions of what you assume is going on with Lupin and his group, especially as more details on the organization's illicit activities come to light and come to learn that not all is what it would seem on the surface. I won't spoil the major elements of this plot, but all I will say is that the ending comes across as quite the surprising shocker yet makes sense once you put together the elements of the organization revealed from earlier episodes. The only rough element to this new storyline was the unclear resolution of the fates of Zenigata and Oscar when they become entangled in the mess involving the organization.

The animation style to The Woman Called Fujiko Mine sticks out quite a bit as well compared to past Lupin III works. Anyone who seen Redline may notice similarities in the drawing styles used for scenery and character designs here in this series. This isn't a coincidence as two of the major figures behind making Redline, Sayo Yamamoto and Takeshi Koike, contribute their talents in the unique animation style used for The Woman Called Fujiko Mine. Scenery and character designs are drawn with a pastel-like feel as color tones are quite subdued and there is frequent use of pattern-like designs used to blend in with a number of scenery and character designs. The character designs are well-detailed and the memorable designs of Lupin characters are retained here, all the way down to Lupin's green dress coat worn during the original first series from the early 1970s. Action scenes are well-animated featuring fluid movement in many instances and have great choreography coming from gunplay and even the swordplay used by Goemon.

Overall, The Woman Called Fujiko Mine made for perhaps the best offering I've seen from the Lupin III franchise thus far. It still retains the basic elements of the franchise's premise and characters while creating a more mature series in its prominent focus on Fujiko's exploits and its dark, mind-bending second half when focusing on Fujiko's connections with the mentioned organization. The series certainly won't be for everyone if they are expecting the typical comical antics of the Lupin III franchise. But if you are looking for something different with the franchise, The Woman Named Fujiko Mine should be a worthwhile gem for you.

Last updated Friday, June 29 2012. Created Friday, June 29 2012.
Unevaluated Stretch [series:2545#628]
(One episode watched):

This seemed like an exaggerated James Bond movie to me; that is, time after time, deadly threats face Fujiko and Lupin but somehow they always have just the right gadget, or they are able to think so fast that it is impossible to harm them. It's as if the two characters have calculated everything that could possibly go wrong with their schemes, of which there would have to be an exponential number, and have prepared for each them. Naturally they had makeup kits in their pockets to make complete strangers look exactly like themselves (and nobody bothered to look closely enough to notice the fake)! But this means that Fujiko and Lupin aren't really in any danger and there's no reason to get excited. Rather than a hero and heroine fighting back against an overwhelming power, they are the overwhelming power, in that they are invulnerable and their opponents can only make fools of themselves. Several men firing submachine guns at Fujiko at point blank range? No problem! They always miss. This is basically a cheerleading party, in which the pair show off their skills. Being a supporter of the underdog, I started rooting for the nameless evil bodyguards who couldn't seem to do anything right. But if the bad guys are this dim, do the characters' achievements really amount to anything? I don't want to watch one-sided contests like this, I want to be able to suspend disbelief and at least kid myself into thinking that the protagonists don't have a sure thing going for them. If the show had featured a decent number of good jokes, I wouldn't mind so much, but it didn't. Instead, the tone was one of sex and violence. That's why I was not particularly thrilled by this series.

Last updated Wednesday, April 18 2012. Created Wednesday, April 18 2012.
Unevaluated AstroNerdBoy [series:2545#436]

Through 1 episode...

A good story, enough to outweigh the other factors. Not keen on the character designs, art style, etc. Animation seems fine. Fujiko spends a great deal of the series either nude or mostly nude. _

Last updated Wednesday, April 11 2012. Created Wednesday, April 11 2012.

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