For those of you not aware of my Animejournal at the top of this screen, and my history, I do anime reviews. I’m a big anime watcher and all of the animes people recommend to me, I review and give my opinions on the whole of the anime bit by bit. So if anyone has any suggestions for animes I should watch, leave me a comment.
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Yes, I’ve finally gotten the urge to continue my anime exploration. And I have one word to say about this anime: weird. With this review, I will be discussing the story/plot, characters, music, writers (creator), and anime style/genre.
Story/Plot- The story begins with a young, shy woman named Tsukiko Sagi, who was a famous anime designer. The whole issue began when this particular woman is pressured by her manager to create a new character. So while walking home, after she meets an old lady, she is attacked by a boy on gold roller blades with a gold bat who is later called “Bat Boy” or “Lil’ Slugger” in the English version. She is then taken to the hospital. Two detectives, Keiichi Ikari and Mitsuhiro Maniwa, begin investigating the crime. And boy, this leads to all sorts of other attacks as the private lives of individuals are revealed, all leading in connection to the original victim, Tsukiko Sagi…and her line of work.
I know, that was probably confusing. And that’s basically what you get from Paranoia Agent a big confusing, twisted story, that somehow connects together. Of course, I get it, given the type of mind I have. But less “informed” people will not. In fact, you better have some intelligence, maybe even a slight genius, to be able to understand a story this complex, added with the symbolism that is apparent in this anime. To add, this anime is very short…about only 13 episodes. And it had the nerve to have a cliff-hanger…*sighs* Which makes me mad…but interested. I find the story to be interesting and can easily draw a curious and intrigued mind in.
Characters-The cast is large. Super huge but just for a 13-episode show, and they are all connected to one another in some way, large or small. If someone is talking to someone else, more than likely that someone will become a main character because they will be the next victims…if you even get that…But the main characters are Tsukiko: She is a shy designer who designed this pink dog to help people escape their everyday “reality.” (Boy, the more I type this review, it reminds me of Videodrome..watch that too. It’s not an anime…).
Lil Slugger: This mysterious kid who keeps hitting all the overly stressed and paranoid people with his golden bat and skating away on his golden skates. He also has the ability to grow bigger…and he has braces…
Detective Keiichi Ikari: This guy has some blood pressure issues. And some anger issues.His favorite saying is “If this place is wrong, there’s gotta be some place out there that’s right.” He is more realistic and old fashion. He is investigating the incidents with Lil’ Slugger, but somehow, he gets connected to the events in his own way.
Detective Mitsuhiro Maniwa: The more idealistic and more open-minded detective, he’s most open to all the possibilities. He’s also a bit unconventional in his approach to the investigation. He’s not connected to the events through anyone but his partner, however, he seems quite determined to solve the case anyway.
Moromi: The cute little dog that Tsukiko designed for everyone to escape “reality.
So yea, the characters are actually much more interesting than I am describing. I don’t want to give too much info about them away, because the character development is key to the plot and story. Just remember this: Each character has their own secret life, and each character has their own stress and pressures.
Music-The music is…a bit creepy and eerie. Especially the ending….But it ties in well with the meaning of the story. It seems to express a feeling that we’re all dreaming…the feeling is that everything in the story is a part of how we see reality. It gives that kind of feeling…it’s quite interesting. Someone on youtube described it as “odd, unnatural, not right”…
writer (creator)- The creator, Satoshi Kon, made this after three of his previous films Perfect Blue, Millennium Actress, and Tokyo Godfathers. He said he still had tons of ideas, and so he decided to express those ideas within this 13-episode series. Pretty interesting creator. Some of the things to keep in mind about this creator is the use of 1) Females playing large roles 2) His main characters being at the prime of their fame, to the point they are ready to reject it all 3) This three-partnership idea, where there’s an old person, a younger person, and a little girl. The creator also likes to play with your mind…a little.
Style/genre-The style has quite a realistic touch to it. It’s not over-dramatic. I’d compare it to Myazaki or Pet Shop of Horrors in how realistic it looks. It’s meant to be a shift between reality and the world we “escape” to. I don’t recommend this for kids under 13, and I don’t even think kids under the age of 18 would get this or understand it. The genre is mystery, psychological horror, Satire, and thriller. Personality needed? A really curious person, who loves mysteries, open-minded, and into anything truly mind-boggling.
So that’s my review of Paranoia Agent. It’s quite interesting. Something I would watch again…however, I wish there was more. The ending left at a cliff-hanger….