Senkou no Night Raid

Genre: Action, mystery
Score: Excellent
Rating: 12 for violence

Shanghai, 1931: In the wake of the First Sino-Japanese War, a secret organisation called Sakurai Kikan employs spies with supernatural abilities to uncover intelligence and further Japanese interests in the area.

One of the most morally questionable stories I’ve seen animated, this series shows the actions of a small group of likeable, well-meaning patriots doing illegal intelligence work. None of the nations involved is without guilt; and even though the actions of Sakurai Kikan are mostly preventing crime, you can’t really say that they’re the good guys.

This series takes a look at the back room dealings and secret movements of a very troubled period of history, and does so without having a jingoistic point of view or painting its own country in too positive a light. It’s a tricky balance that’s not quite perfect, but it’s a very good effort.

Note that the three extra episodes slot in at position 0, 7.5 and 14, and it’s best watched in chronological order with them included.