I don't see why everyone hates Vicious, the original one was a boring character with a bird that would have looked ridiculous in live action.
The bird was too much sure, (It was a Harlock homage) but he at least seemed menacing, in control, and had a cool voice.
He also had like 10 minutes of total screentime over the entire 26 episodes, and 7 of those mminutes were him kicking ass and the rest was ominous looming.
And for 10 minutes, that's all that's needed.
We had hours of the live action guy. During which he whined and complained and killed minions for no reason and beat women and yelled like a psychopath and just generally looked dumb, like an idiot whose minions would have betrayed and killed him years ago, ho can't possbily hold control. And the awful version of Julia. What the hell was with that ending? Ugh.
Every single time the show cut to them it ground to a halt and got worse. If you cut them entirely from the show except for like 2 episodes, the show instantly gets better.
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And the way the anime wanted you to care about his and Spike's history without properly explaining why would should was just as bad.
That was entirely so the viewer could be in the same boat as Jett and Faye. We don't understand why Julia was so special, or what Spike's relationship was with Vicious. We get enough clues to piece it together, and that's enough. It's his dark past and the one woman he loved… and that's enough. She's perfect to him and Viscous was basically his brother and nothing the show did could ever make her the same ideal and perfect to us as she was to Spike.
Having them be vague enigmas, making us wonder "Why is Spike risking his life to avenge this person?" is an intentional choice.
The show could have easily cut any random episode to give us an in depth flashback for episode 24, but they didn't. Having a rough idea of what happened and filling it in ourselves is stronger and more impactful than in blatantly and boringly spelling it out. Same way we never needed to see Darth Vader as an 8 year old.
Personally I wouldn't like for example you have people complaining about how Faye in the anime was likable whereas LA Faye isn't and I'm over here thinking to myself "When Was She Likeable?" at least personally.
She's likeable in the Japanese. In English she's just kind of always indignant and rude but the voice fits. I liked Live Action Faye better, we actually could see and understand why she was hanging out with these guys.