By Dave B.
Seis Manos (Netflix) follows three martial arts students in a small Mexican town as they team up with a local police officer and an American DEA agent to find justice for the murder of their master who was slain by a man who was genetically mutated by magical tears from a statue. Their mission is further complicated by a mysterious visitor from their master’s past who holds the key to unlocking the truth behind untold mysteries. Does all of that make sense?
Trying to describe Seis Manos in detail is kind of like trying to put a tiger in a shoebox: not something that I'm inclined to try. It's a show that just needs to be seen. The eight episode animated show incorporates themes from many different genres including grindhouse, kung fu flicks, exploitation movies, horror, magical fantasy, narco-gangster, and more. I can honestly say that I’ve never seen anything quite like it. And although it is animated, it’s definitely not for kids, mostly owing to its adult language and intense violence. It contains well-stylized hand-to-hand combat, swordplay, gunfights, magic, mysticism, mutated humans and animals…you get the picture. This show has it all.
And frankly, that’s great! Seis Manos is a delight. I’ll admit that the first episode didn’t overly impress me, but it improves with every 30 minute episode until after the finale, I was desperate to see more. Perhaps my favorite thing about the show is that it’s deeper than it looks. It often touches upon comparative philosophy with a strong foundation in Daoist thought. I won’t pretend that it’s offering viewers any great new insights into the meaning of reality (or lack thereof) but it’s satisfying that all of the carnage in the show is leavened with thoughtfulness.
Seis Manos is a surprisingly great show, but I can definitely see how some viewers will be put off by some aspects of it. It’s animation never gets to be much better than above average (despite an impressive color palette permeating every scene) and some viewers may be turned off by its level of violence. However, if you’re a fan of “B-movies” from multiple genres and multiple eras, Seis Manos is a must-watch. I guarantee that you’ll enjoy it
I have no clue what I'm doing, but I'll keep doing whatever it is to the best of my ability.