Trigun's a great series marred by an abysmal problem: Villain of the week syndrome. The series has such a strong storyline that could have been developed in 13 episodes (obviously incorporating a 'heftier' use of flashback). As such, 13 episodes remain little more than filler, and not the good kind of filler we've all come to know and love, i.e. Love Hina.
Vash and Knives' story - whilst brilliant - is, how shall i say? Dead Serious? Yeah, that about sums it up.
The theme of morality plays in direct contrast to the humorous first half of the series. As such, i feel it was constructed rather haphazardly as the anime as a whole fails to convey it's ultimate message. It's really two different ideas implemented into one series.
This is all my opinion, and whilst Trigun has many flaws, I adore it for the characters. Who can forget that final scene where...
MASSIVE 'SOIL YOURSELF' SPOILER!!!
Wolfwood 'bids the series farewell.' Such a dramatic moment.
I think the greatest flaw with the series was when Vash killed that one guy. He was so against the killing of anyone, that I thought Vash would go insane if he were forced to do so. But no, he's sad for like 5 min and then he's back to his old happy-go-lucky self.
...which in turn undermines the theme of morality. Vash's character was that he'd go out of his way in every extreme to uphold his character... killing that one fellow (Bluesummers? something like that) was very odd. One could argue Vash's killing of Bluesummers was the extreme - however, Vash's reasoning throughout the series is that each party can survive mutually without harm to the other (re: butterfly and the spider). I understand there's a great deal of symbolic items in that, however, as I delineate further down, the construction of the actual series detracts from what message it is trying to convey.
What's really strange (as commented before by others) is that he dwells on this for only one episode, and not all of it either. Also very out of character...
I stand behind my first comment - it was good, but not great, and I'll add to it - I don't think it should be mentioned in the same breath as other 'better' anime (re: greatest ever comment). It's really disjointed, as though the writers decided half-way through they need to make it serious, otherwise it wouldn't be good anime. Knives shows up out of the blue, as does the serious theme. It would have been better served if they toned down the comedy OR introduced some more serious elements in the first half of the series (ala Cowboy Bebop) - I remember the first time through being very unprepared for the drastic change in mood.
cartoon network got the rights to air trigun on Adult swim, so you can look forward to seeing it rise in populatiry ( i dunno with THAT dub though, is it just me or does vash sound like michel jackson?)
And let's not forget episode 3 (or 4?) with Frank Marlon and the homosexual overtones...or was that just me?
Actually, I'd be happy with the comedy or drama had the writer chosen a consistent beginning, middle and end. I read somewhere that the manga had countless problems and was relocated to a number of studios due to failing popularity, profit, etc. In the end it buggered things up and made it the hybrid it is today.
But on that note i'd like to recommend Metropolis to everyone here. I've waited almost a year to see it, and hot dang, boy was it worth it.