jaycee's avatar


  • Durham, NC
  • Joined Aug 3, 2009
  • 33 / M

Dead Leaves

Dec 8, 2010

We can skip the part where I say this is weird. If you're at all interested in this series, you already know that it's weird.

Perhaps you like FLCL. Or that Milk...thing that was on Adult Swim once upon a time. Perhaps you building up a repertoire of anime to delight or disgust your friends.

Enough speculation--you are not sufficiently prepared for this anime, but you will probably still watch it. And then you will have experienced weirdness, rather than simply knowing of it.

Along the way you may vomit.


Here's the story: Two people start out naked on Earth with no memory, get sent to a prison that is the movie's namesake, kill a lot of stuff, do a lot of weird shit, and then end up back on Earth.
I'm skipping a lot of material, but it doesn't matter. The plot is a vehicle for dick jokes, sight gags, and cartoonish--even for cartoons--ultraviolence.

This is not to say that's it no good. Just that you could have a plot about giant caterpillars and it would still work for the premise.

Wait, there is a giant caterpillar in this plot. Okay, nevermind. Moving on.


The animation feels like something you would have come across on Liquid Television in the 80s. It's hyper-cartoonish, composed of simple lines and garish colors. If that's your thing, it hangs together pretty well. The colors got a little overdone in my opinion, but it was an intriguing attempt.

The detailing is simple enough that from time to time I wasn't quite sure what I was looking at. This is a blessing in scenes though, where the constant squishing of bit characters would have been extra nauseating if rendered with any sort of detail. I mean, I wanted humor and oddities, not an Adult Swim sanitized version of Genocyber. With poop.

The artists do get props for the sound effects, which had an animated component in many scenes (think "WOOPWOOPWOOP" floating across the scene when an alarm is going off). I can't say that it actually added anything, but it was sort of neat and fit in well with the art style.


The soundtrack was largely bad rock, which seemed utterly appropriate for the material at hand. It was fairly innocuous, and tempos generally matched the pacing. I guess that's a win. I don't know, I'm not a music guy.


There were characters? I thought there was just a collection of sight gags and ambulatory pistols.
Okay, I jest. There is a teeny bit of characterization. Panda is a sarcastic chick that kills people, Retro is an overly enthusiastic, clueless macho guy who kills people. With a TV for a head. There's your characterization.

They were entertaining, but they weren't really developed. But in anime that I think is 60% pistols being shot at each other, that may be all you need.


I'd like to say you'll enjoy this. Or you won't. But I can't really tell. I'm not really sure if I enjoyed it.

But I didn't vomit.

Even though I sort of wanted to.

6/10 story
6/10 animation
5/10 sound
6/10 characters
5.8/10 overall

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aydenclare Jan 13, 2012

lol And that pretty much summed it up for me as well.