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.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Elfen Lied (Erufen Rīto)

How can I put Elfen Lied into words? Well, I just can't. I recently purchased the entire series on Amazon based on a whim and a few mumblings I heard on the internet that basically reinforced my whim. Well, I can't possibly be more grateful that I purchased and watched this show. It's wonderful. It could be one of my top five favorite anime, but I'm not really sure because I really haven't tried ranking them. Maybe one day I'll do that in a list.

But onto the show... There are only 13 episodes and that just doesn't seem fair at first. What can 13 episodes really cover? Even great shows like Cowboy Bebop and Trigun could make 26 episodes, twice as long as Elfen Lied. So how can a show that is so short be so remarkable? Well, that just goes to show the restraint it takes in making a show like this. There's just enough time to tell the story, but it ends leaving the audience wanting more.

This show is simultaneously brutal and beautiful. The first ten minutes of the first show is ridiculously bloody that it feels like someone compressed all of Hostel into ten minutes and made it an anime. In the first minute a bare-naked girl wearing a steel mask is ripping soldiers limb from limb with an unseen weapon known as a "vector" and this continues on until true plot of the show is sort of introduced in the eleventh minute of the first show.

This show is not for kids and really not for most anime fans. It's pretty brutal as I hope I have conveyed. But if you can stomach blood than you are in for a real treat.

But there are moments of real beauty. The feeling of being the outcast and the cruelty that some people are capable of making are portrayed perfectly in this show. The relationships that people have between each other and just how strong and fragile they can be is the meat of this show. There is blood and gallons of it, but the blood largely be overlooked if the steak is good enough.

The show tackles heavy issues like prejudices, child abuse (specifically the rape of a child), and genocide. There is also a lot of female nudity and strong language. Again, not stuff for kids.

But the show also balances these things out with bits of comedic relief and just plain cuteness.

If I may borrow a quote from the Anime News Network, this show mixes "insane amounts of violence with a heavy dose of ultra-cuteness." That is Elfen Lied.

And I should add that the theme song is one of the most beautiful theme songs ever...

1 comment:

  1. You might as well work on the unfinished stories. Even if you don't think they are any good, you might find a 4 page section that is great and turn it into another story. And if you are stuck for some good character names just refer to the article on names you just read. I don't think there has ever been a character in any book named Brook'Lynn. (Or Braxlee or Banjo either)