Recently, I was having a conversation with someone online, who pointed out I appeared to be a big fan of Studio Trigger. Which is true, I am a big fan, and rank their work among my all time favourites. Yet there was one title, I’d never quite gotten around to…and thus, my introduction to the legendary Inferno Cop.
“Jack Knife Edge Town is as edgy as it sounds, and it’s up to Inferno Cop to stop that edge from tearing his city apart. He’s both law and outlaw, dispensing ungodly justice to evildoers like a candy machine. Lowlifes, gangsters, and even hellspawn all infest Inferno Cop’s hunting ground, but that’s the good news. The bad news? Prior to the story, his family was brutally murdered by Southern Cross, a shady organization that made the worst mistake imaginable by doing so. Now, Inferno Cop’s limiters have been removed and his mercy rung more dry than the entrails of his victims.
Something is welling up in Inferno Cop’s city, however, and soon he’ll face the most daunting gauntlet of his life involving him literally falling into and escaping from Hell. A flaming head won’t be enough to ward off the true evil that’s rapidly approaching—Inferno Cop must call upon all his allies and his own wacky antics to conquer the trials that await him.” (From MyAnimeList)
If you’re reading that and thinking ‘Oh wow! Inferno Cop sounds pretty badass!’…yeah, it does. However, whilst Trigger are certainly known for their stylish designs, this isn’t a flashy cop drama. Inferno Cop is a comedy, using still images and very minimal CGI to its strengths, and God, does it work well.
Straight off the bat, Inferno Cop throws you into, what appears to be your standard set up for any police drama. A damsel in distress, a group of ruthless thugs, the police on their tail…until you find out the police are utterly useless. Step up Inferno Cop, who doesn’t care if you’re paying your taxes or not – everyone is flammable, as far as he’s concerned. When you realise that a flaming stack of bones is in fact the most ‘normal’ thing that’s happening in the given scenario, you begin to piece together just what you’re in for with Inferno Cop.
The entire show makes fun of all the ridiculous ‘messenger of justice’ cliches you find in any standard police show, or even your average thriller, and makes them as gaudy as they would be in their normal setting – except in Inferno Cop, it shows them to be just as ridiculous as they should be. Hell, Inferno Cop literally drives a car that’s on fire. It’s so Trigger, but it works so well.
As with all comedy, the comedy is subjective. Not everyone will find the jokes funny. But were the jokes delivered well? Oh, yes. Since Inferno Cop is an obvious satire of the police genre, the jokes revolving around that are obviously the strongest. Poor Inferno Cop with the desire to be the most just hero…only, when you’re not in a police movie, it doesn’t quite work like that. And of course, Trigger have given us mechs the size of galaxies, so what’s the harm in throwing a little insanity our way? Mechs sent to destroy our hero, travelling to hell and back (literally)…sure, why not? And whilst the artwork, involving still images and the occasional bobbing character interactions may not have been intentionally funny…it worked. For a show that was trying to be so big to be reduced to almost just cardboard cut outs got some sniggers out of me.
Inferno Cop is definitely a show that needs to be watched to be fully appreciated, rather than someone just telling you how great it could be. And at only 3 minutes an episode (not even including the ending!), you don’t have to waste a lot of time on it at all. Not that it’s a waste, of course. I’m eagerly anticipating the next season. The show was a literal hot mess, but in the most stylish way possible.
My rating – 7/10
What comedy shorts would you guys recommend? What’s your favourite Trigger work? Let me know!
Until next time!