Based wholly on a recommendation by SDB, I sent off to Amazon and ordered all six Excel Saga DVDs, and I've been watching them for the past week or so. Based on a manga by Kohshi Rikudou, the story revolves around a trio of characters named after three Tokyo airport hotels. And it just gets weirder from there. Fortunately, two of the characters are pretty cute, and the third is the cool super-villain we all wish we could be.
Oh yeah, the main characters are the bad guys, I suppose. They're members of ACROSS, an ideological organization whose purpose is to take over the world. But, since the populace wouldn't be able to handle such a huge change right away, they're going to start by taking over Japan. Of course, they wouldn't want to bite off more than they can chew, so it's prudent to begin with a single city.
I'm only through the first five epidodes so far, but there's aliens, hitmen, main characters dying left and right (and being brought back to life, because otherwise the story would suffer), dog/cat stew, bottomless pits, zombies in unusual places, and more absurdity than you can shake a futon beater at. Kohshi Rikudou is actually in the story, as is the director, and Excel talks directly to the viewers so much that it really draws you in.
It's a blast of hilarity, and there are handy cultural notes that come on the DVDs and can be shown while you're watching that help explain some of the Japanese in-jokes that I probably wouldn't get otherwise. I really want to hurry up and finish the series of 26 episodes so that I can watch it again; there's a lot I'm sure I missed the first time through.
Plus, there's no nudity, so you can show it to your kids or grandparents.
So, all that said, let me now try out my new Amazon Associate link code. I bought mine used off Amazon and got a pretty good price; I don't know if you can get to used stuff through the link below, but you should check that out -- I saved more than $60 buying used. I looked on Ebay, but there weren't any good deals there. Maybe you'll have better luck, but Amazon worked great for me.