Saturday, December 15, 2012

Stein's; Gate

Plot: Rintarō Okabe , "mad scientists Hōōin Kyōma", is a twenty something living in Akihabara with his friends without much to do besides mess with amateur science, particularly time travel. One strange day he witnesses the murder of a young genius physicist Kurisu Makise, but then time seems to freeze and reset right before the murder, which never comes to pass. Reluctantly Kurisu joins Rintaro and his friends with something they have discovered quite by accident: a way to send text messages back in time and change the future. It all starts out as fun and witty banter, but even Homer Simpson knows that messing with the time stream soon starts to have consequences...

Verdict: To those trying to get into anime and animation as young adults, or convince others of the same age to do likewise, this is good one to start with if you don't mind a long bit of rising action in the beginning, there is pay off don't worry. The story shifts nicely between banter and random life events that is some of the very best, in that in rings true, to thriller drama that feels natural and real in context of the story. This is a simple story about young man's personal journey from zero to hero with an ending that is sweet, and well earned both by the characters and in the context of their circumstances--and time travel, which is always awesome (especially the way they solve the climax time paradox).

  If Give it a watch when you need a break with friends.

Facts: 25 half-hour episodes (episode 25 was released later as an OVA) that Funimation is slowly releasing outside Japan. It is based on a video game that has yet to leave Japan, but Chaos; Head its "prequel" (not related to the story or even uses time travel, it is just set in the same world chronologically before it), is. It is getting a film sequel in 2013Chris Sabat is in this. The rest of the cast is Funimation regulars, and interesting...


Bechtel-Sarkeesian Test: It does a little actually though the story is clearly Rintaro Okabe's.

 (Kurisu Makise quickly befriending Mayuri Shiina)

 ( Mayuri Shiina, Moeka Kiryū,and Kurisu Makise trying to discuss at the lab)

 (Suzuha Amane, Kurisu Makise, and Mayuri Shiina discussing time travel)

(Feris Nyannyan/Rumiho Akiha and Mayuri Shiina at work)

Low Angle Syndrome: Not really, the times one could make the argument are brief and do not reduce anyone or anything involved in the plot, rather add to it. 

Die Hard Test: Unfortunately this happening, twice, does become ticking time bomb of the plot, but it is handled respectfully to all characters involved. Nobody dies and then merely idolized, not without the idolater being reprimanded for it...

Better than Star Wars and Suck it Disney: While the supporting cast of friend-characters are all rather one-note, they actually become both endearing and charming as the story Okabe progresses. To that end, though in some cases they are not the best people, I am going to give the series points for, what seems to me, better portrayals of transgender (and later transsexual) as well as "fat" men, in addition to women who also happen to be nerdy/geeky.

 (Ruka Urushibara)

(Itaru "Daru" Hashida )

 (Feris Nyannyan/Rumiho Akiha and Mayuri Shiina)

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