Ok, so I've never been that much into anime. Pointy noses, giant sweat drops and tentacles do nothing for me, but a couple of years ago someone recommended a series for me to watch called 'Cowboy Bebop.' Despite the name I gave it a shot and, what do you know, found out I loved it!
Cowboy Bebop is set in the future where the human population has spread to the rest of the solar system. They have created and travel through a series of "gates" that make interplanetary travel possible. The show centers around a pair of bounty hunters (Cowboys) aboard the ship, Bebop, and their never-ending quest to make enough Woolong to keep food on the ship.
Music plays a huge part in the show. Each episode title is derived from a song, band or musical reference. The opening sequence has endeared itself to millions of fans just do to the great jazz/bebop performance of "Tank!" by the Seatbelts. Even Jet, the Bebop owner, upon the rare introspection describes himself in musical terms. But what really makes the show great are its characters and the story. There's a sense of "cool" that hangs around them much like their cigarette smoke in zero g. They've got style, they've got class, and they all have a backstory that's driving them towards an ultimate resolution -- and therein lies the magic of Cowboy Bebop. Like any good story or show you begin to care about the characters and their motivations. The 26 episodes swerve in and out of "story" episodes -- ones that deal with Jet and Spike's past, the addition of a troublemaker, a hacker and a mushroom-loving Corgi -- and the one-shots that give them a certain situation to overcome -- like a mysterious guest on the ship, the possibility of being stranded, or (one of my favorites) a great mushroom hunt that involves a scooter and train. The show is always full of great dialogue, touching moments, hip scenarios and just plain freaky visuals. It offers a full package that no one will want to miss.
And that's why non-anime fans will love this show. Because -- in a small, non-pompous way -- it transcends the medium and becomes its own thing. Eventually, you're not aware you're watching a series of drawing or a cartoon or an anime and begin believing you're just watching something great -- something you'll ultimately begin to care about.
Give the Cowboys a shot. If you do and happen to not like it, you can place a bounty on my head.