After Jackie Chan’s famous scene in CITY HUNTER (1992), the Jean-Claude Van Damme led adaptation in 1994, and the very abysmal installment LEGEND OF CHUN LI (2009), this web series focuses on the story of Ryu and Ken of the popular video game. This web series blows away the other live action versions out of the water thanks to excellent performances and an even more intriguing backstory that revolves around the future of the two heroes.
In the year 1987, Gouken (Akira Koieyama) is the master of a dojo in the Wakayama Prefecture. His only two students are Ryu (Mike Moh) and Ken (Christian Howard). Having trained for many years, the two best friends feel as if they are ready to learn the Ansatsuken style. At first Gouken is reluctant, but eventually decides to train them. They must master three powerful techniques to master the style: The Shoryuken (spinning uppercut), the Tatsumaki (jumping tornado kick), and the Hadouken (a powerful ball made from energy).
When Ken stumbles a manual that has a technique called the “Satsui no Hadou”, he attempts to use it to master his Hadouken. However, Gouken is truly upset and he begins to remember memories of what had happened last time the “Satsui no Hadou” was used. Thirty years ago. a young Gouken (Shogen) was training with his brother Gouki (Gaku Space) under their master Goutetsu (Togo Igawa). When Gouki had learned and used the “Satsui no Hadou”, he had threatened his brother in combat and was forced to leave the dojo. Finding a cave, Gouki began to master the “Satsui no Hadou”, which forced him to eventually transform into a beast by the name of Akuma (Joey Ansah). Remembering the consequences of the past, Gouken decides to teach Ryu and Ken without either of them learning the Satsui no Hadou because if that were to happen, he may meet the same fate as Goutetsu had years ago.
Who would have thought a short film would be the beginning to this exciting web series? In 2010, British actor, filmmaker, and martial artist Joey Ansah unleashed Street Fighter: Legacy, which depicted a battle between Ryu and Ken with the appearance of the flame haired beast Akuma, based on the popular Capcom video game. In 2012, the people at Capcom expressed their pleasure of the short film and decided to give the rights to start up a new web series.
Returning as Ken Masters is Christian Howard, who co-wrote this series with Joey Ansah, who directed the series. Instead of Jon Foo, who played Ryu in the short film, Ryu is played by Mike Moh. Moh had a role on the television series KAMEN RIDER: DRAGON KNIGHT in 2010. Moh and Howard have excellent chemistry as Ryu and Ken. The two become not only like students, but best friends and brothers. Even though they will eventually have to face each other, they show a great amount of respect for each other. This comes to both the delight and at times, chagrin, of their sensei, Gouken.
What is even more great is that we not only look at the story of Ken and Ryu, but the backstory of Gouken as well as how a dangerous technique came back to haunt him as he learns Ken had attempted to learn the deadly art too. It is refreshing to see how the evil force known as Akuma was born. The flashback sequences are nicely done and at times very brutal when it comes to seeing Akuma fight Gotetsu. However, some fun stuff includes hearing Ken and Ryu’s trademark themes from the video game in the series.
What is even better is the action in the film. It is clear that both Moh and Howard are amazing martial artists and they fit the roles perfectly. While on the video game screens the Tatsumaki move looks like it should be done with wirework. However, it is done by performing a 720-degree kick, a move both Howard and Moh can master quite well. The special effects used to showcase the Hadouken and the Shoryuken as nicely done and proves to be the most faithful in any adaptation of the video games.
If you want to see a faithful and very well done adaptation of the Street Fighter video games, then STREET FIGHTER: ASSASSIN’S FIST is exactly what you need to see. If you want to see this series right away, and it is recommended you do, go to Machinima’s Youtube channel and check out this series as soon as possible. Each episode runs approximately eleven to twelve minutes long. Mike Moh and Christian Howard are perfect as Ryu and Ken and the backstories are well done. Kudos to Joey Ansah and everyone involved with this series!
adaptation • Christian Howard • Joey Ansah • Mike Moh • Street Fighter: Assassin's Fist • video game • web series