Serial experiments was an anime I really thought I would like. It was from the maker of one of my absolute favorites, Texhnolyze, so I figured chances of me enjoying it were high. Unfortunately Lain is very far from being a substantial anime and it's story/characters suffer from the overcrowded story.
On one hand Lain explores some interesting ideas, of godhood, human evolution, what memories are and more. However it delivers these messages in a very bizarre manner, being very abstract at every point possible, to avoid actually needing to build a believable world or characters. One of my distinct problems is that the wired(internet) is being used to pose a possibility in our world, while using something that is different than the internet, and never sufficiently explained making the point a pretty problematic one. The rapid movement of the story, and focus on random narrations leaves little time to flesh out a character or get a feel for the world. Lain is basically just a bunch of scenes, semi randomly placed. This makes it a weak piece, as it loses the power Texhnolyze had by spending so much time showing the world while still being as abstract as it pleased.
Average with some very cool effects as well as some not so successful ones. I enjoyed it for the most part as fairly simplistic yet effective.
I loved the soundtrack, it was the best thing the series could muster. The opening is really fitting, the various subtle sounds that play to set the feel are all very well done. The voices are fine too, none being awkward and unwelcome.
Exceptionally weak and undeveloped. Seriously, the main character is hardly delved into despite being a pivotal point, and she very swiftly goes from a not tech savvy person to building a super computer, and then when we realize she is "special" it is fairly crude, and you just need to accept it for the rest of the series. The supporting cast is even more offensive, characters are introduced, many are not really used, and those that come into play towards the end when they have not been relevant the rest of the series, are so woefully uncared for it's awkward to see the anime make them come across as important.
This series could have been better, with less abstract garbage and actually focusing on creating a world where the messages would be impactful, swell as having characters who were explored even slightly. I am bummed out, and really tried to like the series, but it ended up being a lot like boogiepop phantom.