9) Classics Defiled
Case Study: Ikki Tousen
Ikki Tousen looks like a depressingly typical anime series at a glance: it's all about huge-breasted high-school girls who beat the crap out of each other while getting close to naked. So what sets Ikki Tousen apart from Tenjho Tenge, Air Master, and all of those other series laden with panty-flashing female fighters? Well, beneath the boobs and the torn school uniforms (and the five thousand licensed statues of its scantily clad characters), Ikki Tousen is based on the Chinese classic Romance of the Three Kingdoms. In Ikki Tousen's world, the heroes of this revered legend live on through jewels that just happen to end up in the hands of nubile young women in very shoddy clothing.
It's baffling as to why Ikki Tousen's creators even bothered with this backstory, since no one is buying the anime series (or its manga counterpart, thoughtfully renamed Battle Vixens) for its take on Chinese literature. We can only hope that anime creators will turn to Western lit next and make a series about brawling, half-naked women who are all reincarnations of the cast of the Iliad and the Odyssey.