It's new (2004), well animated; has its own sense of style, very clean animation. Smooth and almost ethereal sometimes.
The Anime Network is airing it, and so it's been showing up in the Cutting Edge > Anime Network > Action listing for On Demand (Comcast Digital Cable). It's so wonderful to have animé available on- demand like that. (^*^)
The main character is of course Kino, as well as Kino's bike Hermes (a motorbike that talks to Kino, and sometimes pipe's up into Kino's conversations with other people). The show follows Kino and Hermes's travels through a variety of countries--anywhere from small villages, to widespread landscapes, to river cities like Venice--learning about their cultures and peoples and traditions (IE, quirks), and moving on.
A lot of what goes on in Kino's Journey has a very surreal quality to it, which might raise some eyebrows at first. What you realize, though, is that the unreal quirks of the different countries Kino passes through, are very much based in reality. They're just presented in such a way as to make them seem ridiculous--for better, or for worse. (Sometimes the quirks are funny, sometimes disturbing)
All the way through, Kino and Hermes do their best to leave well enough alone--much like in Star Trek, it's not their intention to effect these cultures in any way, only to observe and explore. At least, up until the countries start becoming more oppressive, to the point that Kino is given no choice but to become involved--like the hedonistic paradise nation based on ancient Rome, where any traveler entering the country is given the option to fight in a tournament, become a slave, or die.
I've only seen a few episodes so far, but it's been really good. (^*^) It has a very Taoist or Zen quality to it. It has a very Zen feel, but the theme has a much more Taoist approach. This is definitely one I'd purchase, given the spare funds to do so.
Oh--and while not having seen it with original Japanese voice acting, the dubbing on this one is quite good. (^*^)'
Anyways, am hoping to start a new LiveJournal community. It's called hypotheosis, and there's nothing there yet. It's just a place ah plan to start yibbering about different concepts and things as my mind gets clear.. (^*^); Which could be anytime, who knows. Maybe tomorrow, maybe months from now. (^*^);; In any case, it'll be there.
The general idea is to have a place to start going on about personal hypothesis about reality, cosmology, metaphysics, philosophy, sociology.. generally ideas that come totally from the self, and may or may not have any actual bearing on reality--or even existing theories and terms for the phenomena suggested. (^*^) It's just a place to let the mine wander.. mostly for intellectual purposes, not specifically for entertainment (like the dormant miniverse community that have just been too busy / distracted to start writing more for).
In other words, you know all those ideas in your head? The ones that could make for really good stories / scifi or fantasy settings / or just seems like it could be a really good thought on how the world works? That's what hypotheosis is for. Part for coming up with theories on reality, and part for helping to refine one's own mind into something functional and interesting.
So.. have fun? (^*^)'