I wanted to see a cool anime featuring worthwhile female characters, and I like dark, twisted, psychological tales (not that that's all I like.) I wanted to like this. Sadly, it didn't happen for me.
The elements are all there for a good little gothic sci-fi horror story. It just never fleshed itself out enough for me to get interested. Occasionally a bit of flashbacking would add depth and character development. I found the characters likeable (though I confess I begin to wonder if I just have a prejudice in favor of black hair and blue eyes) but never felt sufficiently compelled to care about them from one episode to the next. I feel like the story could have been good if it had been more developed, but new elements were added in too haphazardly and superficially. Bando? 35? No development, no followthrough! Potentially interesting characters like Shirakawa were never given their chance to shine, to win me over. Even Kurama, who should have brought me to love him, wasn't brought to his full potential. I liked Lucy - or maybe I just like sinister glares.
It could be that part of the reason I failed to care as much as I could was because of the gigant-eyes style of many of the characters. When you make the eyes too big, they lose nuanced expressiveness and I cease to relate to them as empathetically as I would relate to eyes that actually looked like those of another human.
The drawing of the characters wasn't interesting to me. But the backgrounds were lush, lovely and evocative. The sound was moody. I've read negative responses to the voice acting but I thought it was good, both in the English and the Japanese. But all in all, I had a hard time pushing my way through only 13 episodes - I found myself pausing for a distraction every 5 minutes or so.
It's almost like they thought "as long as we show some bodies being ripped apart in every episode, and put it on a beautiful backdrop, that's all we need to do." They need some lessons on how to make me care. They *could* have done it.
I wonder if the manga is better. I've heard good things. However, I've also heard it's not released in English. I'm not sure if I'd put in the effort to finding out, though.
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