Wow. Upon checking my posts, my last anime review was Ore No Imouto which was done more than a month ago. I guess I’ve been too busy watching more that I deliberately wrote less. And there’s work too. Sorry to those who kept on visiting my site only to read useless personal posts lol.
Anyway, I’ve decided to write about the anime adaptation of Another, which I’ll definitely remember as one of the most awesome shows released in early 2012. Having aired its finale last March 27, this mystery horror anime really appealed to me since besides being a fan of uncanny and unusual shows, it has zero fanservice (well except for that one beach trip, but the atmosphere in that episode was still depressing), which is rare. I don’t have anything against fanservice or anything, but it just tires me to watch time-consuming awkward angles that deprive me of exercising my imagination on my own.
Plot: In 1972, a popular student named Misaki died in an accident. Her classmates, devastated by her unexpected death, carried on in class as if she’s still alive. If other people were to ask about Misaki, her classmates would point to her empty desk and say ‘What do you mean? Misaki’s right there.‘ They kept her desk in place and even went as far as bringing it to their graduation ceremony. The story goes that the dead Misaki was actually present in their graduation class photo.
Spring 1998. Due to his father going to India for work, Kouichi Sakakibara transfers from Tokyo to his grandparents’ house in the rural town of Yomiyama. Alas, his lung collapsed which got him hospitalized, making him skip the first few weeks of school.
A few days before leaving the hospital and starting school, he gets visited by fellow classmates from Yomi North: Izumi Akazawa, Tomohiko Kazami and Yukari Sakuragi, to check up on their new comrade.
Unable to call his dad, Kouichi decides to go outside the hospital to get a decent cell phone signal. He meets an eye-patched girl on the elevator wearing the same uniform girls wear in Yomi North. She mentions her name is Misaki Mei and that she has to do something, to fulfill a promise. Kouichi bids her goodbye as she fades away from the lightless basement floor, walking towards the morgue with a creepy doll in hand.
On his first day of school, he notices that he’s actually classmates with this Misaki Mei.
Misaki always leaves the class on recess and lunch breaks, and doesn’t join in physical education activities. Despite Kouchi wanting to converse with her, he really couldn’t find a casual chance. He then asks Yukari Sakuragi about this mysterious classmates of theirs.
Seeing Yukari’s initial reaction when she heard Misaki’s name, it’s pretty obvious that she knows her, but just answered the question with a naive ‘Who?‘ and just shakes her head. Kouichi then looks around, and saw Misaki on a building’s rooftop. Yukari tried to stop him from going there, but he was already far away.
After a formal introduction between the both of them, Misaki Mei warns Kouichi not to get close to her and not to talk to her anymore. She also asks him if their classmates have told him already. Told him what? Well, that’s where the fun part of this anime begins: figuring out the situation they’re in, and how to resolve and/or free themselves from that situation. I promise you, without reading spoilers on the net, this anime will be anything BUT predictable.
Such questions begin to pop up in everyone’s minds: Who is Misaki Mei? What is her relation to the 1972 Misaki? Is she a ghost? Why does she have an eye-patch on her? What was she doing in the hospital? Why does her classmates ignore her as if she doesn’t exist? And on that note, does she really exist? Or is the protagonist just delusional? And what do Kouchi’s classmates need to tell him? These questions will make you keep watching the series until you finish all twelve episodes.
The animation and music are both superb, sharp images I tell you! How the characters and surroundings are drawn and colored really emit that depressing atmosphere. The smoothness of their movements are quite remarkable as some scenes per episode have more than your average anime frame rate, too. The music comprises of eerie wind tones at subtle and mysterious scenes, and a creepy unrelenting orchestra that plays when the suspense and action kicks in.
This is exactly why I love mystery and horror-themed stories: it’s like a game. You try to figure out the culprit or the situation the characters are in via pure logic and reasoning based from the facts presented. And most of the time, you’re gonna have to read between the lines of those facts. This keeps my brain and thoughts in check.
But of course, on the other end of the spectrum, I also love hardcore slapstick comedy! The kind that will melt your brain due to the scenes and ideas being crazy enough that they don’t have any chance of crossing your brain even once in your lifetime. This also keeps my brain and thoughts in check.
So that’s about it. I’ll be writing more reviews from now on! I hope you enjoy Another!