An epic hentai. No, we're not kidding.

You know, it's nice to see piggish sexuality portrayed in such a positive light. -- and so explicitly.

Copyright 2005 by Pat Powers

Wordsworth is one anime that's determined to see that you get your moneysworth. The epic tale it tells requires five half-hour episodes, and I was ready for the series to end before I reached episode 5.

To be fair, I'm not generally a fan of epic stories. I mean, when SF writers started churning out all the thick trilogies, I found myself uninterested. Hell, I quit reading the Lord of the Rings trilogy halfway through the third book because I had just stopped caring what Frodo did with the ring, and if anybody had asked ME what he should do with the ring, my advice would have been not to his liking, nor to Sauron's either.

So if you LIKE epic stories, you might like Wordsworth a lot more than I did, and there are a LOT of reasons to like Wordsworth.

The Wordsworth Saga tells the story of the struggle between the Tribe of Light and the Tribe of Shadow. They're at war because the Wordsworth Tablet, a mysterious inscribed stone with magical powers, is broken. Not only is it broken, but parts of it are missing, which means the mystical powers that kept things peaceful have vamoosed.

This leads to open warfare between the Forces of Light, which is the army of your typical medieval fantasy kingdom, and the Forces of Shadow, which is the army of a group of mythical types (demons, elves, catgirls, etc.) who live in an underground kingdom.

Young Astral is the son of the ruler of the underground kingdom, and he wants very badly to earn a swordsman's seal as the story opens, so he can help the shadow knights defend the gates against attack by the forces of light. (It should be noted that the forces of light and the forces of shadow are not "good" and "evil" but seem to be similarly composed, morally speaking, i.e., both have their good and bad elements.)

Astral isn't allowed to be a swordsman because his dad the demon king doesn't want him to get seriously killed before he can entrust the secret of the Wordsworth tablet to Astral.

But Astral has the hots for Sharon, a beautiful blond swordswoman, and wants to earn her respect by hacking up people, so he goes to the swordsman training center to get his swordsman certificate.

The swordsman training center happens to be run by Nina, a young catgirl who clearly loves the hell out of Astral. She happily gives him the most advanced training and tests available and what do you know -- young Astral turns out to be quite the swordsman and gets his certificate from the cutie-pie catwoman who adores him. Actually, he eventually gets a little more than his certificate from Nina, if you know what I mean, which is germane in this epic plot.

Astral gets a little tail from a catgirl. Note the graphic strength of this image -- typical of the series as a whole.

Meanwhile, back at the dungeon, a shadow knight who has a horse's head is raping a beautiful captive. We know it's rape because she keeps begging him not to and she's tied up with her wrists overhead and her ankles bound together the whole time.

A horseheaded knight of the Tribe of Shadow rapes a bound captive in the dungeons. Apparently, the dungeons of the Tribe of Shadow function as a sort of candy store for the Shadow knights, well stocked with attractive female captives, and Shadow knights are free to take them at will. That's ... a pretty good fantasy.

At some point the captive convinces horsehead to give her a ring that's lying on the floor of her cell, and she uses it to create an explosion which blows horsehead right out of the cell, leaving him dazed and confused in the courtyard.

The same explosion sucks Astral right INTO her cell (see, things CAN both suck and blow). Astral has been creeping around in the air vents so he can spy on the blonde swordsman he's hot for while she takes a shower. The explosion somehow sucks him out of the air vent outside the blond swordsman's room and into the captive damsel's cell.

The level of animation in Wordworth is well above that seen in most hentai. Frex, check out this beauty who is being secretly watched by Astral as she showers. Nice.

Why the air vents in the warrior's quarters are connected to the dungeons is one of those anime mysteries which mere humans were probably never meant to understand.

The captive damsel is unconscious (we guess from the force of the explosion) and she's still just as tied up as she was before. Her breasts are still hanging out from the attentions of the horsehead knight, her previous rapist, so when Astral wakes up from being knocked out by the explosion (he just happens to have landed face down in her lap) the first thing he sees is her large, fine hooters.

He seems hypnotized by them, sueezing them and fondling them while captive girl starts up her "No! Please no!" litany again. (Well, if she doesn't like rape scenarios why is she hanging around half naked and tied up in a dungeon, eh?)

Her pleading does absolutely no good, and pretty soon our hero hauls out his sword and takes a mighty slash at the captive's legs with it, freeing her ankles.

Her legs fall apart and reveal all the underwear she isn't wearing.

Apparently, it's a panties-optional dungeon. Sadly, Astral apparently has no idea what he's looking at. Still, he's interested.

Astral, gazing at the slit of her pussy, cries out that he nicked her and gets up close to inspect the "wound." It's important to note that this isn't played for laughs -- we are clearly expected to believe that Astral hasn't seen a pussy before and doesn't even know they exist.

If you teach someone like Astral virtually nothing about sex, you can't blame him for going to the dungeons and using one of the helpless damsels chained there as human sex ed devices.

Apparently, swordsmanship is about the only area they educate royals in in the shadow realm. Maybe it's an abstinence-only kinda thing.

Astral apparently figures out that he's not looking at a wound and is soon poking and probing at it with his finger, while the captive cries "No!" etc.

In fact, he winds up unsheathing his meat sword and raping the shit out of the captive while she remains tied, though it's arguable that he doesn't understand that he's raping her, giving that if he doesn't know what a pussy is he probably wouldn't know what sex is, either. I guess they don't call it the realm of shadows for nothing.

Unfortunately, the captive damsel escapes, and it turns out that SHE knows what rape is -- it's happened to her often enough. (In fact, she's raped by some pigmen during the course of her escape -- more about that later.)

At the end of episode 2, she runs into Astral, recognizes him as her former rapist, and uses her "Power of Mithra" to "turn him to dust."

The captive has this power because she is Maria, daughter of the king of the forces of light and Sorceress of the Tribe of LIght. How she wound up chained up and raped so often if she were such a powerful sorceress is one of many questions that are not answered in Wordsworth -- maybe it's in the Japanese video game it's based on somewhere. (I found myself thinking "maybe it's in the game somewhere" a LOT while I watched Wordsworth -- the plot holes gave the story a swiss cheese kinda consistency .)

What "turning someone to dust" actually means is tossing him 20 years in the future, and also tossing him into a nearby desert. This is where Astral winds up, not knowing where he is or what has happened (we find out via voiceover that 20 years have passed.)

Now you may think I have given away most of the plot for Wordsworth, but it's just not true -- I've given away the plot for the first two episodes (though I've skipped over a lot of stuff) which serves as the set-up for the remaining three episodes. Like I said, the story is an epic. And all this plot sets up some fairly intense dramatic scenes and situations, some of which Wordworth follows through on, some of which it fails miserably at following through on. Very often, these failures make Wordsworth a much less dramatic and exciting story than it COULD have been.

Also, there are a lot of plot holes and obvious fuckups that mar the drama. The most egregious of these occurs shortly into the third episode, when Astral has a chance encounter with a 20-year-old nymphet after hoofing it back to the kingdom of light.

Astral has grown a beard and a ponytail and he had amnesia after being "turned to dust." He doesn't know who he is, but when a bear jumps the nymphet, Astral's reflexes are triggered and he skewers it before it can maul her.

The nymphet is embarassed because she was naked, but later she feels she must thank Astral properly for saving her. Eventually she does so, and this being a hentai, thanking him properly involves sucking his cock and fucking him.

How they say "thank you" in Wordsworth-land. I have to say, it works for me. Unfortunately, I think the woman "thanking" Astral is his 20-year-old daughter from the future.

There's just one little problem. Remember that Astral raped the dungeon captive 20 years ago, and that she turned out to be a princess? Well, the nymphet he rescues is a princess -- the daughter of the princess he raped.

Astral's daughter.

Pretty big drama here, right? Wrong. Astral and his daughter never discover their sexual faux pas, in fact, no mention is made of it at all.

It could be that the numphet is the product of her Maria's rape by the shadow horse knight. Or it could be that she's the product of rape by the pig men. But then you have to wonder why they went to so much trouble, dramatically speaking, to set up the situation where Astral unknowingly boffs someone who could be his daughter? But if she IS his daughter, why is mention never made of that fact? Did I get some characters confused? (It's a very easy thing to do in this series.) Really, WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON HERE?

Must have been covered in the video game.

There are a lot of other lapses like that which prevent Wordsworth from being the hentai it could have been, but the story is so rich with plot, characterization and incident that it almost doesn't matter.

Frex, there's a scene where a good female fairy is stalked by a couple of tentacle-monsters. The tentacle-monsters have already been seen in action so you know what she's in store for if she gets caught -- she'll be held helpless and get raped senseless by the tentacle monsters until she's turned evil by the ordeal. There's a short but intense chase between her and the tentacles. She seems finally to have gotten away but then the tentacles grab her and drag her down to the monsters. After some tentacle bondage/sex, she turns evil, and it's a shame because she was a very nice fairy before that.

When bad tentacles happen to good fairies ...

Now, lets' get back to the pigmen, two of my favorite characters. Sort of the Rosencrantz and Guldenstern of this epic, except they only show up once and don't die. During her flight from the dungeon, Maria who as you'll remember is from the land of light, gets captured by two pigmen from the Tribe of Shadow. We don't see her capture, we just see the result of her capture, which is her, strung up naked, suspended by ropes at her knees and ankles to overhead pulleys that the pigmen control.

No coyness here ... this is one happy piggy!

The thing that's so great about the pigmen is the unabashed glee with which they go after their naked, helpless victim. It's not the cold, mean-spirited assault that is typical of many bondage fantasies (i.e., not just hentai bondage fantasies). You get a sense that these pigmen are just damned glad to have a beautiful, naked woman helpless in their grasp and they go after her like two dogs working over a chew bone. One busies herself with her mouth, the other works on her pussy. There's nothing subtle or coy about it -- they rut on her, while she does the usual "No! Nooo! Noooooo! Ooh! Oooh! Oooooh!" thing that hentai damsels are so prone to do. And supine to do.

And of course the fact that they're wearing little piggy Speedos -- we kid you not -- and the fact that their cocks have little piggy faces, adds a lot to the scene. It's inventive imagery and we wish we could show it to you without endangering our R rating.

This is what we call bringing erotic inventiveness to whole new levels.

To sum up, I guess the thing about Wordsworth is that it's so long and so complex and so full of stuff that you'll probably find SOMETHING to like SOMEWHERE in it, if you like hentai in the first place.

I don't see how you can go wrong with Wordsworth, though it's unlikely that every episode will please all viewers. While it's not a mythical invention on par with "Lord of the Rings," it's an interesting medieval fantasy larded up with imaginative and at times gorgeous graphics, a strong storyline, interesting characters and background, and some very raunchy sex scenes. What's not to like?