Don't you just hate spoilers? I do, too. That's why I always try to include warnings. However, I sometimes ramble a bit too much here or there and maybe a few (or many) key plot points slip without me giving proper notice. So I'd like to include a blanket spoiler warning for the weary internet travelers of the world: Here There Be Spoilers. You've been warned.


Friday, April 10, 2015

Baccano!

Conventional. Normal. Those are two words that do not describe the 2007 anime Baccano! No, this anime goes against the grain so much that it creates its own genre. This is an anime that has no beginning and no ending. It has absolutely no discernible order from the get-go and it is only through watching all of the episodes does everything make sense, but that's only if you put in the effort to pay attention and piece everything together. 

Set in early 1930's America (for the most part), Baccano! is the one anime that proves that crime can grant you eternal life. 

This series utilizes a non-linear storytelling format and the first episode seems more like the final episode as it quickly gives everyone a glimpse of everything that has already happened to everyone. The seventh episode seems be the true beginning as it takes place in 1711 when the immortal elixir was first made. 

However, each episode jumps to different spots in time and focuses on different characters so I cannot tell you to watch the episodes in a different order for them to make more sense (as I could do with The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, for example). You'll be in 1933 for a few minutes, jump back into 1930, and then dive into 1932 for the remainder of an episode. Every episode is like that. You really have no idea what you will be watching from one minute to the next. 

And even though this series is only 16 episodes I should warn that there are a LOT of characters. I believe it's something like 20 main characters. There are so many characters that the opening credits practically introduce them to you to help you get to know them better. 

It's really tough to describe this series, but I will try. The most predominant storyline is the one that takes place on the train Flying Pussyfoot. It is there you will meet most of the primary players of this series. That story deals with a group of terrorists in black trying to kidnap the daughter of a senator. These terrorists just happen to be supporters of their immortal leader Huey Laforet who has been imprisoned and they want him to be released. They are hoping they can use the senator's daughter as leverage. 

Meanwhile, there is a killer monster on board the train going by the name of the "Rail Chaser" that is killing everything in sight, including the terrorists in black and the men wearing white that want to kill everything in sight, too. 

Stuck on this train with all of these villains are the likes of Isaac Dian, Miria Harvent, Rachel, Jacuzzi Splot, Czeslaw Meyer, Nice Holystone, and Chane Laforet. There are still others, too. Just how they got there, who they are, and where they go from there you'll need to watch to know. 

This is one of those classic anime, but it is a pain in the ass to get accustomed to at first. There are so many characters introduced in such a short time and so many time skips that it can almost be overwhelming. 

The best thing to do is to just go with the flow and don't have preconceived notions of how a story is supposed to be told. This is a great anime with great characters. Just have some patience... and maybe take some notes. 






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