9.10.2009

Haunted by Ghost in the Shell

This isn't really a review, but I thought I should comment on a new anime world that I've been immersed in recently. Way back when I first started watching anime, I rented most of the "essentials" of the genre, including films like Akira and of course, Ghost in the Shell. At the time I wasn't into manga and had never heard of Shirow Masamune, but since then I've become a fan of his detailed cyberpunk style through Appleseed, so I was interested in looking at his other work with new appreciation. Although I almost never watch dubbed anime, I decided to make an exception for Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, since it was just too tempting to have it accessible on Netflix Watch Instantly. I was completely blown away by the series, and kept watching episode after episode until I finished it all! I'm a sucker for all the incredible technology, modern cities, and even cool cars, with fantastic characters and plots to boot. The implications of cyberbrains in an always-connected world and all the accompanying philosophical questions are fascinating, and it was thrilling watching Section 9 solve all the various crimes this kind of world makes possible (including "hacking eyes" to conceal identity!). I also really fell for the Tachikomas (intelligent "tanks"), and now I'm dying to add them to my toy collection! After finishing the series, I decided to watch the original movie again, which was excellent (I don't think I appreciated the slow montages the first time around), and I also viewed the third movie, which has one of the longest titles I know: Ghost in the Shell Stand Alone Complex: Solid State Society! I can't wait to check out the second complete series, as well as the second movie, but I think I need to watch another Gundam series while Mobile Suit Gundam SEED is still pretty fresh in my mind. There's just too much anime and not enough time!

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