Yuki is a disaffected middle school boy who has no dreams or goals in life; in fact, the only thing he has is his diary. Writing down everything he observes and documenting every thought, the young boy uses it as an outlet for his imagination. One morning, however, Yuki wakes up to find his cell phone filled with diary entries for the next ninety days. Thinking nothing of it, he continues his morning until he begins to realize that everything on his phone is rapidly coming to pass, and it isn't just mere coincidence. Now, Yuki suddenly finds himself thrust into a survival game against other future diary owners to become the new Lord of Time.
What extent would someone go to in order to change their future? Is the future possible to change or is it a matter of fate? If someone believes in destiny then to change it would be to play god. Mirai Nikki and Mawaru Penguin Drum explore these matters in their own way and both become a rollercoaster full of unforseeable twists and turns. Both are highly recommended.
Giovanni is a young cat with a troubled childhood -- he is bullied in school, and waits patiently day after day for his father to return from his journey. One festive evening, Giovanni and his friend Camponella find themselves aboard a great train which takes them to the edge of the universe and back. However, in the midst of the sights and wonders, Giovanni soon begins to discover that the train's purpose might be much different than it appears.
Mawaru Penguindrum was heavily influenced by, and frequently references Night on the Galactic Railroad. If you want to understand all the symbolism, you should read/watch this classic children's story.
Similarly, if you enjoyed NotGR and are interested in a more modern spin on some of the same themes, you should watch Penguindrum.
Once there lived an eccentric author called Drosselmeyer who wrote grand tragedies - one of them was the tale of a prince who sealed away an evil raven by breaking his own heart into tiny pieces. However, before the story could be completed, the author died and the tale took on a life of its own. Now, in a town where fiction and reality meet, the story continues on its tragic course with Ahiru, a duck who transforms into the beautiful Princess Tutu in order to restore the prince's heart. But will Ahiru's act of love be enough to defy the story's terrible destiny and lead to a happy ending?
Both Princess Tutu and Mawaru Penguin Drum are beautiful works of fantasy in which your own imagination plays a part. It's not just about the objective plot of the story, but how you interpret it and the emotional experience you gain from the process. While Penguin Drum takes plenty of short cuts with the animation, I found both shows had equally lovely character designs, stunning atmosphere (owing a lot to the direction), and a quirky approach that charms over and over again. Furthemore, in both, the characters rarely turn out to be as straightforward as they first appeared. If you liked the approach in one show, you'll love the other.
"I have only abandoned my body, I still live here" - are the words emailed to friends of Chisa, several days after her death by suicide. As Lain delves deeper into the world of the "Wired" (also known as the internet), the line between it and reality becomes more and more unclear. Close the world, open the nExt.
These share a similar theme where the main characters experience situations that may be real, imagined or halucinated.
Lain used this to great effect but I feel that in Penguin it becomes obscurity for the sake of being obscure.
On a chilly December evening, Hana, a transvestite, Misaki, a teenage runaway, and Gin, a retired bike racer, found little Kiyoko in the trash. For three homeless people, finding an abandoned baby might not have been the best of luck, but with good intentions and two cents to chip in, the trio set out to find the parents of the child. But locating the mother will not be an easy task, and all they have to go on is a small key...
How far would you go for your family? What makes you family? What do you do when you've hurt those you care about? Tokyo Godfathers and Mawaru Penuin Drum tackle the ups and downs of family dynamics and the ways in which family relationships can support or hurt their members. While Tokyo Godfathers ostensibly has the more realistic premise and a different overall tone and Penguin Drum is rooted in the fantastical and somewhat ridiculous, both deal with the above questions in their own ways and ultimately highlight the importance of family, whether biological or chosen.