Wow. That's the first thing I said when I finished Steins;Gate in a single day.
I previously watched Chaos;Head out of boredom. I'd just finished Texhnolyze so I took a hiatus from anime for a week or two to level out. With nothing to do, I found Chaos;Head stashed away on my harddrive so I watched it. It was alright. A little cheesy but the characters were great. The characters made the show and in the last couple of episodes, my opinion of it really flip-flopped. It went from a comedic, entertaining, overal enjoyable experience into something wholeheartedly interesting, which is far more valuable to me. (example: Serial Experiments Lain - one of my favorite animes of all time, however I can't honestly say I enjoyed the actual time spent watching it, just the mental jumpingjacks it inspired for days afterwards). Steins;Gate is apparently in the same world line (or bundle of world lines) as Chaos;Head, so I started it without any prior knowledge as to its plot or anything. Comparatively, Steins;Gate blows Chaos;Head entirely out of the water.
The characters were 100% more engaging, albeit less relatable in a lot of ways, than in Chaos;Head. Throughout the series, you just wanted things to work out for all of them, more and more as the series wears on. The development of main character Okabe is just incredible. On the surface he is a complete nutjob who probably watches a little too much anime and seemingly distorts it into his own reality. But he is aware of his outward craziness and, in my humble opinion, as far from insane as you can get (and certainly less insane than some other characters in the show - one of which spends a large portion of an episode screaming and running into the door because her cell phone was taken from her) The relationships between them (even though they differed throughout the series depending on the world line) felt authentic in every way.
The overall plot of the story was incredibly well put together. In the early episodes, a lot of things are done or said in passing that don't strike you as important at the time, but are delivered with enough memorable filler in between that the viewer automatically remembers it. While watching the show, it felt like I was always one step behind, whilst at the same time feeling that I was complerely grasping it. Once I started understanding, one of those little insignificant things from early on will finally be revaled for what it is, and in such an unexpected way every time.
The plot came to an end in just the right spot, in my humble opinion. (Don't worry, I won't give anything away) I felt satisfied in the end when I was left with no more Steins;Gate to watch, and in a more warming sort of way. I would definately reccomend this anime.
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