Thursday, February 02, 2006

"Monster? I only just met 'er!"

Subject: Noir
Woo hoo! The end of "Monster"! That was excellent!

I watched the whole batch the other night. I meant to only watch a couple at a time over the course of the week, but holy cow, that final arc puts the hooks in you pretty deep. There's no way anyone can break away once you start on that ride. So kudos to The Soldats for giving them to us all at once. If it were to trickle out one-every-couple-of-weeks, it would have driven me crazy.

While the final climatic arc was really outstanding, I've got a bit of a love-hate relationship with the last episode. The whole thing is denouement, showing the "after" story of what happens to the surviving characters. And it's got the usually sappy trappings, though it's a little bittersweet at times. And, of course, the very, very end leaves on a bit of a twist that is either symbolic, or tries to leave the door open for various interpretation. Which is typical in Japanese stories, but also a bit cliche for every other "twist" story, too. But part of that twist leaves you with one last harsh question that gives you a bit of a mild shock.

Still, as a whole, the series had a lot going for it. The storytelling arcs and the characters were outstanding. The realism in the details of the surroundings and the objects and everything else made the experience richer. My only real nit to pick is with the animation. It's a bit ham-handed at times. The walk-cycles are usually stiff and halting, which is the sure sign of someone who comes from a manga background instead of animation. And after all, it is from a popular manga series. Still, there's some clumsy 3-D, and a few timing issues as well, but all-in-all, it's nothing that isn't done worse in a lot of other anime. And there are many sequences that more than make up for it.

And now it's over. But it's definitely on my "buy" list, if and when it's ever picked up and the DVDs come out. I still think it would make a great Sunday Night program on something like HBO or Showtime or some other network looking to break into the "niche wars" in that timeslot. *hint* *hint*

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