Back for another anime review. Kristen has her review of this anime on Twin Cities Geek, so I wanted to get mine up on here now.
The highest compliment that I can probably give an anime is that it didn’t feel like an anime, it honestly feels like a very good TV show. In fact, it doesn’t even feel like it’s an animated show, now, that doesn’t mean that the artwork is so hyper-realistic that it is mistaken for real life, aka. Grand Moff Tarkin in Rogue One, but that the story is so complex and well thought out that it doesn’t seem like something for kids, it doesn’t seem like a typical anime, it seems like something you’d see on a TV show with regular actors. There is none of this confusion where it is more on the fun scale or so on the fantastical scale that you know it’s anime like I’ve run into a lot, even with more serious anime like Berserk.
Steins;Gate is a story that follows a mad scientist who accidentally invents time travel and the organization that is trying to stop him and his fellow lab members. That is the single sentence version of the plot. It crafts an interesting story as the time travel machine is developed, as they look to over come problems with it, as people they thought they could trust, they find out they can’t, and many more troubles as they first race to see how the machine works and then race to try and figure out how to stop some things that they unintentionally started or caused. The story is paced wonderfully and always leaves you wanting to watch more.
Besides the fact it doesn’t feel that much like an anime, the other thing that I loved about it was the characters. The main mad scientist, Okabe (also who calls himself Hooin Kyoma – please forgive the lack of special characters in it), is a very enjoyable character to watch. He’s over the top, talks to himself, and always believes that he’s the best thing around. But it’s not a grating, I’m better than everyone else, it’s funny a lot, makes you feel for him at other times, and you see how much of it is actually him putting on a front as he’s just an eighteen year old first year college students. All of the other lab members have their own personalities as well, and there isn’t overlap. There’s Daru, who’s character is personable, but skeevy, Mayuri who is sweet and a bit spacy, and rounding out the biggest main characters, Kurisu who has smart, slow to trust, and doesn’t put up with Okabe’s crap. Even the other characters in the show have their own personalities, and everyone seems to have been thought out well. There isn’t much overlap on traits, but they all have something that sets them apart. It’s very cool to see that depth of character development worked naturally isn’t a show.
This is an anime that I would recommend to basically anyone. While Daru does make some sexual jokes (or have jokes made about his gaming dating life), there really isn’t anything offensive in this show related to sex. However, this show does deal with dark themes, there are things that happen that are tough to watch, many times very emotional. It isn’t very gory, but there are moments that do show some gore and some violence. Everything the show deals with, though, feels like a proper part of the story and I never felt that things were handled poorly in the story. It is paced so well and everything handled so well, it’s definitely worth a quick watch, which is another nice thing, it’s not too long.
Have you seen it? If so, what are your thoughts on it?
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