Cyber City Oedo 808
|Cyber City Oedo 808|
|サイバーシティ OEDO 808|
|Genre||Cyberpunk, action, tech noir|
|Created by||Jûzô Mutsuki|
|Original video animation|
|Directed by||Yoshiaki Kawajiri|
|Produced by||Makoto Seya|
|Written by||Akinori Endo|
|Music by||Kazz Toyama|
Rory McFarlane (UK version)
|Released||June 21, 1990 – October 4, 1991|
|Runtime||45 minutes (each)|
Cyber City Oedo 808 (Japanese: サイバーシティ OEDO 808) is a 1990-1991 cyberpunk original video animation. It was directed by Yoshiaki Kawajiri. Set in the year 2808 in the city of Oedo (Tokyo), it tells the story of three criminals who are enlisted into fighting crime in exchange for reduced sentences. They are Sengoku, an anti-social maverick, Gogou, a mohawk wearing hacker, and Benten, an androgynous bishōnen.
The UK release of the OVA includes a completely new score by Rory McFarlane.
To combat computerised crime more effectively, the Cyber Police unit of the future Japanese city of Oedo has restarted the feudal practice of hōmen (放免), employing hardened criminals with a history of hi-tech offences and other crimes such as murder as officers themselves.
Three such criminals are Sengoku, Gogul and Benten, who are serving their 300-or-more year sentences in an orbital penitentiary. For duty served, each criminal will receive a reduction in their prison time. Desperate to get away from the boredom and monotony of jail life, they half-heartedly agree to the deal. They answer to police chief Hasegawa, who keeps them in check thanks to an explosive collar that each criminal wears around his neck. Hasegawa can blow this collar remotely and it will also explode if they fail to complete their missions within an allocated time period. Each one is also armed with a jitte (the traditional weapon and symbol of authority of the ancient Edo Police), although they also have access to more powerful weaponry.
Although there are no specifics to what kind of society the series is based in, it is presented as very high-tech but with a rather dystopian feel. In the first episode for example, a man under pressure confesses to a murder (which he did commit) and which is responsible for the present crisis. This is enough for Hasegawa to order Sengoku to kill the man there and then without so much as a trial. When Sengoku fails to do so his sentence is increased.
|#||Title||English titles||Original release date|
|01||"Memories of the Past"|
Transcription: "Inishie no kioku" (Japanese: 古の記憶)
|"Virtual Death" (UK)|
"Time Bomb" (US)
|June 21, 1990|
|Sengoku is sent to save 50,000 people trapped in Oedo's largest skyscraper after its central computer is mysteriously taken over. Along the way, he finds that the only suspect is a dead man.|
|02||"The Decoy Program"|
Transcription: "Otori no kikō" (Japanese: 囮の機構)
|"Psychic Trooper" (UK)|
"The Decoy" (US)
|December 28, 1990|
|Gogul's investigation of a murder pits him against an experimental military cyborg as he tries to rescue his ex-partner. Of note is that during this episode we see at least one other cyber-criminal trying (unsuccessfully) to remove his collar, so it is known that there are more than the three anti-heroes being employed by the Cyber Police unit.|
Transcription: "Kurenai no baitai" (Japanese: 紅の媒体)
|"Blood Lust" (UK)|
"The Vampire" (US)
|October 4, 1991|
|The freak murder of three geneticists leads Benten to investigate one man's quest for immortality, as well as finding a young woman transformed into a vampire with telekinesis because of this quest.|
(Manga UK/CPM, 1994)
|Shunsuke Sengoku||Hiroya Ishimaru||Bruce Martin|
|Gabimaru "Gogul" Rikiya||Tesshō Genda||Seán Barrett|
|Merrill "Benten" Yanagawa||Kaneto Shiozawa||Daniel Flynn|
|Juzo Hasegawa||Norio Wakamoto||Bob Sherman|
|Kyōko "Okyo" Jōnouchi||Mitsuko Horie||Julia Brahms|
|Varsus||Kyousei Tsukui||Nigel Greaves|
|Dave Kurokawa (Episode 1)||Takeshi Aono||Marc Smith|
|Mishiba (Episode 2)||Osamu Saka|
|Sarah (Episode 2)||Yoshiko Sakakibara||Tamsin Hollo|
|Kazuo Shiroyama (Episode 2)||Banjō Ginga||Eric Flynn|
|Remi Masuda (Episode 3)||Emi Shinohara||Teresa Gallagher|
|Shūzō Saionji (Episode 3)||Unshō Ishizuka||Marc Smith|
|Kelley Takakura (Episode 3)||Ako Mayama||Lorelei King|
Cyber City Oedo 808: Attribute of the Beast (CYBER CITY OEDO 808 獣の属性, Saibāshiti Ōedo Hachimaruhachi: Kemono no Zokusei) is a graphic adventure game released on March 15, 1991 for the PC-Engine CD-ROM² by Nippon Computer System exclusively in Japan. The storyline is completely original and not an adaptation of any episode.
|Cyber City Oedo 808|
|Soundtrack album by|
|Released||30 January 1995|
|Label||Demon Records (out of print)|
The original British VHS release (also televised on Channel 4 circa 1995) features a more rock-centric 23 track score composed by Rory McFarlane not present on the US or Japanese versions. McFarlane's score combined metal, electronica and ambient styles. It has been out of print for years and, as such, is very rare to find on CD, but it is known to be available on the internet. The UK soundtrack has a considerably different tone than the original (more pop-like) Japanese score. Due to Manga Entertainment UK losing the rights to the Cyber City series this edition of the score was unavailable on western DVD releases and remained available only on the old VHS versions from the mid nineties until Anime Limited released the movie on Blu-ray in the UK with the UK Dub and Soundtrack CD included in the release.
The miniseries has received a cult following over the years. Hemanth Kissoon of Filmulation.com reviewed the series in 2007, saying that the series "was released 17 years ago, yet still stands up as a gripping take on Japan’s potential future."
In popular culture
- "Cyber City Peso 808 (OVA)". CrystalAcids. Retrieved 2017-08-11.
- PCE Daisakusen!! PCE 大作戦!! - Cyber City Oedo 808
- Cyber City Oedo 808 OST
- Cyber City Oedo 808 (1990) Archived 2008-08-17 at the Wayback Machine
- Kissoon, Hemanth (19 June 2007). "Cyber City Oedo 808". Filmulation.com. Filmulation Limited. Retrieved 2 March 2015.