ERASED

Alt title: Boku dake ga Inai Machi

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ThatAnimeSnob's avatar
Feb 20, 2016

I tried to wait until it’s over before shitting it properly, but the damn thing didn’t let me. It kept piling up bullshit, the fantards keep excusing them with more bullshit, it got all the way to no5 on MAL and no1 on Anime-Planet, and the topics I made on Reddit and MAL about its problems were deleted immediately, so nobody can have an opinion that differs from the damn circlejerk. This piece of shit that the anime community considered better than Legend of the Galactic Heroes was plain offensive on so many levels and I am here to tell you why.

1) TIME RESETS MAKE NO SENSE.
Just look how there is absolutely no consistency amongst them.

First & Second resets:
- Trigger before someone nearby gets killed
- The protagonist doesn’t need to know about the eminent death for the reset to happen
- The protagonist has no control over when it happens
- The reset sends you 5 minutes into the past
- If the protagonist fails, time moves on as normal

Third reset:
- Triggers after someone nearby gets killed
- The protagonist needs to know about the death for the reset to happen
- The protagonist has no control over when it happens
- The reset sends you 20 years into the past
- If the protagonist fails, time reverts to present, and he can try again until he succeeds
- Let’s not overlook the time paradox of managing to chance the day of death but everything else remained exactly the same, something which is impossible because of the butterfly effect. Also, we are supposed to believe when he returned to the present, his old self magically forgot everything, life went back to normal and played out in exactly the same way. Bullshit.

Fourth reset:
- Triggers when everybody is fine.
- The protagonist wills it to happen. The fan boys were defending the show before this, saying it was great how he had no control over this power, since he can’t use it to his benefit and the tension is tenfold because of it. Well, so much for that. But the fan boys still defended it, saying the protagonist could always control time travel but was too afraid to use it consciously. Excusing bullshit with more bullshit.
- The reset sends you 20 years into the past but not at the same moment the third reset did.

Fifth reset:
The problem with this one is that it doesn’t exist. We get to a point where the protagonist is in grave danger and yet no time reset triggers. Why is that when it fits several criteria from previous cases? I mean, yeah, he says that the fourth reset would be the last, but how did he know that? Did he read the script for what happens next? If he knows he lost the power, how does he know that???

Sixth reset:
Despite the protagonist reassuring us that there will not be another reset, he contradicts himself in the last episode by willingly going back in time and warns everybody of what to do so he can expose the killer. And guess what, he was in grave danger when it happened. Why didn’t it happen in the previous life or death situation? Why didn’t he go all the way back to the car scene, so he won’t lose 15 years of his life? Because shitty writing, that’s why.

And once again, the fan boys said it was no time reset and that he used a super amazing mind game to do everything right. Sure man, he just regained his memory and figured out of a plan that involved the killer taking him to the roof, while his friends would be waiting on ground level with a huge cushion. He would know that the killer was going gay for him too and that he would be fine if he jumped down the roof, with the power of friendship saving his ass and making the killer admit his crimes. Sure, it was all an amazing mind game by a guy WHO WAS A RETARD DURING THE WHOLE SERIES.

2) THE PROTAGONIST HAS NO STEADY MOTIVATIONS.
They change in every episode with no rhyme or reason, something the fan boys didn’t notice because he is a bland self-insert who can be anything and anyone at any given moment. I mean did you even see how generic his face is? Take all faces A1 Pictures animated from light novels and compare them. They are the exact same one, featureless face!

First & Second reset: He saves kids because he is altruistic
Never explained why he is, he was magically born that way.

Third reset: He wants to save his mother by manipulating the emotions of a little girl
A selfish reason, now he is magically no longer altruistic.

Fourth reset: He wants to save the little girl
He no longer cares about saving his mother, which by the way was never hard to save. He had 20 years of time to simply be around her when the fateful night arrives.

3) PLOT CONVENIENCES.
Many events happen seemingly by chance and end up affecting the plot considerably. No proper mystery or thriller should be so reliant on chance because it cheapens what it’s trying to accomplish.

Episode 1: The mother gets killed exactly when she finds out who the killer is. How nice for the killer to wait until he is revealed before deciding to walk in the house.

Episode 1: The reason the protagonist panicked so fast when he saw his dead mother, was because at that exact moment a neighbor came in and the police arrived outside. There is no way for the killer to have arranged it that way, since the neighbor was just passing by. Therefore, it was darn luck and not incrimination that made the protagonist panic, turning the whole thing into stupidity instead of an elaborate scheme.

Episode 3: The protagonist has birthday the exact same day as the girl he is trying to save. This is way too convenient and lazy writing for the sake of cheap feels. He already wants to save her; there is no reason to hammer it even further with more drama.

Episode 5: Airi appears out of nowhere and helps the protagonist when he is hunted by the police. The reason? She just believes he is not a killer. Ok…

Episode 5: Airi’s house is set on fire immediately after she finds out who the killer is. Again, the killer is waiting to be revealed before making his move.

Episode 6: The manager appears out of nowhere to help out the protagonist. The script just wanted him to be there for the sake of plot armor.

Episode 7: The protagonist is about to kill someone when a friend of his appears out of nowhere and stops him before it’s too late. The script just wanted him to be there for the sake of ruining tension.

Episode 8: The girl was hiding from her mother in the exact same bus that the person who wanted to kill her was hiding his equipment. From all the places in this universe, what are the odds of the target running to hide into the killer’s base?

Episode 11: The killer knew that the protagonist is alive but in a coma for many years, yet didn’t do anything to kill him, despite having the political power to do anything he likes. He just reappears when the protagonists wakes up, does his best to make him remember what happened, and THEN tries to kill him.

Episode 12: The killer out of nowhere is not only unable to kill the protagonist but he is also willing to save him and commit suicide if the guy he wanted to kill just a few seconds ago is not alive. And all that were well known to the protagonist who had regained his memories just a few minutes ago. What the frack???

Episode 12: Airi appears out of nowhere under the bridge and is super friendly with a guy she just sees there. Dumb girl is dumb. Also, this was a sappy ending just for forced feels.

4) THE PROTAGONIST’S REASONING MAKES ABSOLUTELY NO SENSE.

He runs away from the police, thus incriminating himself for no reason. The fan boys excuse it as him panicking because of the murder of his mother, thus he wasn’t thinking reasonably. If that is the case, why is he STILL running away from the police after he returns to the present? He is calm now, and thinks reasonably. Hell, he spends half the episode playing with children out in the open for everybody to see, and then goes to chat in a public cafeteria full of people. Seems like he is not afraid of being seen, right? But when police officers arrive, he is running away again. What is this bullshit?

He assumes that he can save his mother by saving a little girl, the two of which have absolutely nothing to do with each other, just because he is at the time when the murders began. Well, thank goodness nothing else happened in the world that year, or he might have arbitrarily assumed he would have to do something completely different.

The fan boys excuse it as, if he stops the killer, he will save both at the same time. But how is this going to work? Just look at how no matter what he does, it will never have a positive outcome.
- He is not intimidating to keep a child killer away by spending time with the girl (in fact, this makes the killer double as motivated)
- He is not strong to beat up the killer in case he shows up
- Even if he scares the killer, this will not stop him from killing other children or his mother in the future
- Even if he saves the little girl, it will not prevent her mother from beating her all the time
- He is not trying to tell anybody about it, which over-complicated things for no reason. The fan boys tried to excuse it like nobody would believe him if he talked. Yet in later episodes pretty much EVERYBODY believes EVERYTHING he says and helps him out.
• His fellow students agree to hide the girl in a bus by simply believing his story.
• They leave her there in the cold for three days, only for eventually telling his mother about it. She believes him as well, and lets her hide in their house thereafter.
• He then tells child support to come check out the mother, something nobody was doing for years. They also believe him and turns out it was easy to prove the girl’s mother was a bad parent.
• The mother’s mother is also magically thrown in the story and is the one that revels what a terrible mother her child is. All the protagonist did, was to tell her to go there when child support is talking to the mother. Something nobody thought of doing for years.
• So basically, he could have resolved the show’s entire conflict by episode 2 if he simply told everybody what is going on right away.
- He then moves to protecting other kids after the first is saved, which again makes no sense. He has no reason to assume the killer would go after the same people, in the same order, and in the same dates. He changed his actions for Pete’s sake, he could have gone after someone else with completely different methods or schedule.

5) THE MYSTERY ASPECT OF THE SHOW IS COMPLETE GARBAGE.
- The protagonist is doing absolutely nothing to find out who is the killer. He prefers to spend his time in a cringy romance between a 10 year old girl and a 30 year old man.
- Whatever the author thinks that can count as clues, is nothing more than hints dropping on the protagonist’s head by complete chance (the bus Hinazuki is hiding just happens to be the killer’s hideout) or through someone’s convenient infodumping (the meeting with the old man, or the teacher in the car). This destroyed any sense of mystery, since the protagonist didn’t use deduction to find clues. They were thrown at him with ridiculous convenience.
- There aren’t even many possible suspects for who the killer could be. It can either be someone from the cast we see all the time, or a complete stranger which would make the revelation BS (thankfully this is not the case). Now try to count how many people look like the guy we see in the first episode (male adult with no beard). There, it can only be THAT guy. What kind of a mystery is this where you know right away who the killer is?
- 10 year-olds in the 80s are somehow masterminds. They can psycho-analyze the protagonist (Hinazuki) and deduct he is hiding something (Kenya). He on the other hand can do nothing but stare like an oaf despite living in the freaking internet era. He is so useless, even little children are better detectives than he is.
- The killer was not revealed because of a mistake he did. He exposed himself and even went as far as soliloquize his evil intentions, like a Saturday morning cartoon villain.
- A mystery story is supposed to give you answers at the end. Yet you don’t get any explanation for why the protagonist has the power to travel in time. Magic space Jesus gave it to him just because. The story never explains anything regarding time travel; it just throws it out there and then expects you not to give a damn when it’s vital to the plot. The fanboys kept saying that you should disregard it entirely, and focus on the mystery instead. Which is impossible since without time travel you have no story. No, really, the story would end in the first episode without it. Also, as proven above, the mystery was also shit.

6) FAKE TENSION WITH CLIFFHANGERS.
Every episode ends with a cliffhanger that makes the average viewer wanting to find out what will happen next. The problem here is that what follows the cliffhangers is a dud. It is always something anti-climactic or completely stupid. The show systematically tries to undo consequences or hide its plot conveniences with cliffhangers that are too obvious to spot when you marathon the show.
- Every time something horrible happens to the protagonist (fails to save the girl or gets captured by the police), a time reset occurs in the beginning of the next episode to undo all the tension.
- When the protagonist is clueless or about to do something really stupid, another character appears out of nowhere as an ally and helps him out with not much justification.
- When the killer gets in the bus where the girl is hiding, is followed by him leaving without even trying to find her because it was conveniently his lair, and not because he knew she was there.
- And of course, the last episode where the protagonist is about to be killed again, but out of nowhere he becomes a mastermind that has planned everything to happen exactly as he hoped.

7) VICTIMIZING GALORE.
A one dimensional evil parent hits while laughing her own child for forced drama.
- No fan boys, saying this happens all the time in real life does not make it any less forced.
- Let’s have the girl being bullied at school as well. No reason to assume the more victimizing they throw at you, the more absurd it becomes.

8 ) PLOT INDUCED STUPIDITY.

Episode 3: Everybody is either too dumb to do anything about it, or too blind to notice the domestic violence. Because a child full of bruises, the testimony of teachers and students, as well as a mother who is constantly running away from inspection, or swings shovels at people, is clearly not evidence.

Episode 5: People lose their jobs, ruin their marriages, and leave town because of a chocolate bar. But people who beat their children every day while laughing about it are left to do as they like.

Episode 5: Only complete retards open the door to a room they know it’s on fire.

Episode 10: You see someone getting in a room but never coming out, despite you standing right outside the whole time. How stupid do you need to be to actually believe the person teleported away?

Episode 10: A little child can’t slip through a jammed seat belt, when it’s easy even for an adult to do it.

Episode 10: The protagonist yells to the killer that he knows his future, something that the killer believes. Which is bullshit because if Satoru knew it, he would know the killer would try to murder him.

Episode 11: The killer does his best to make the protagonist remember he is the killer instead of killing him right away.

Episode 12: The killer magically changes his goal from trying to murder the protagonist, to saving his life and then killing himself.

9) PEDOPHILIA, AS THE PROTAGONIST IS SEXUALLY ATTRACTED TO A LITTLE GIRL.
No fan boys, just because his body is 10 years old, does not make his brain not 30 years old. And nobody knowing he is not really a child does makes him not pedo. Pleading ignorance does not pass in court.
Oh, sorry officer, I thought I could have sex with 10 year olds because I’m a time traveler.

10) ONE DIMENSIONAL EVIL CHARACTERS.
- The manager lusts over Airi, and betrays the protagonist just so he can have her for himself. The fan boys try to excuse it like he did what he thought was right, but all we see is him being a jerk who laughs idiotically and saves Airi because he wants to impress her and get in her pants.
- Letting us know Hibazuki’s mother was mistreated by her husband does not excuse her actions. She is one dimensional because her husband was one dimensional, the end.
- The killer loves to kidnap and murder little children, just because. He is also presented as a mastermind for half the show, always magically teleporting to people that find out who he is, and managing to throw the blame for what he did to someone else. But towards the end, he turns into a laughably incompetent idiot who monologues his evil plans to the protagonist and has no alibi for what he does. He also changes his reason for killing people, from making sure nobody will find out who he is, to magic spider webs only he can see being the reason he needs to kill certain individuals. Also, he does his best to be caught by making the protagonist REMEMBER he is the killer and not killing him while he is vulnerable.

11) AWFUL TIME SKIP.
Any hints of logic the show had, are completely gone when a time skip takes place in the last episodes.
- The protagonist falls in a coma and wakes up with amnesia, two of the most bullshit tropes only lazy soap opera writers would be using. Not only that but they are also completely meaningless. They are both dealt with in the same episode they appear in.
- The only major change made during the time skip was the kids he saved getting married, and everything else remained exactly the same. Because that’s how time travel works. Why would his mother be living in a different place when she is taking care of a comatose man, or the killer having a different lifestyle when he ran away from town and didn’t kill anyone?
- Why the hell did those kids marry each other? There was no damn chemistry between them! Three quarters of the show were spent on building a relationship between the girl and the protagonist, and the result is her getting married to a minor character she didn’t care about that looks like a girl? How did that happen?
- Every fantard was yelling netorare in the episode discussions for not getting the pedophilia ship they were hoping for. In fact, the show began decreasing in average score only because it made the fandom very butthurt.
- Not only the killer did not try to kill the protagonist while he was defenseless in a coma, but also does his best to make him remember. Where did his ingenious plans to keep his crimes hidden went to?

12) UNDEFINED FOCUS.
This show has no idea of what it’s trying to be about, leading to a complete lack of identity. This is evident in how the fanboys were gradually changing their opinion of the show, every time something was disappointing them.
- First, they said it was a time travel type of story. Something I proved it was very bad because it made no sense.
- So, they switch their opinion to, no it’s not about time travel but a mystery story about trying to uncover a killer. Something I also proved wrong, since there was absolutely no deduction made by the protagonist and the killer was obvious right away. I mean, yeah, the fanboys were still surprised with the obvious revelation because they were refusing to believe it would be so obvious. They still pretended it was amazing writing because it made it seem it was too easy to be him. This was self trolling caused by people who didn’t want to accept it was so easy after all.
- Then they say it was never a mystery but rather a thriller, where the protagonist is rushing to save kids from a killer before it’s too late. Again, I proved this was a lie since the constant time resets and the plot conveniences were destroying all sense of tension.
- Desperate to excuse it somehow, the fanboys were then saying it was a drama about people living miserable lives by being mistreated by their family or not getting what they want in life. Something I also proved it was the result of being stupid and not simply talking about it.
- Oh, and let’s not forget the usual double standards they were using all the time, saying how real the characters are, how the show makes them cry, and how amazingly interesting the mystery is. But when I proved the time resets are unexplained bullshit, they immediately say it is just a cartoon and you shouldn’t take it seriously. If that is so, why do you find them real and cry about it??? Why do you call the mystery amazing when it makes no sense???

See? They can’t even defend the show as something done right.

SO WHY THE DEVIL WAS THIS SHOW SO HYPED AND ADORED BY EVERYBODY?
Erased fails in everything besides emotional manipulation. It had a premise where a good hearted man tries to save his mother and a cute girl the viewers feel sorry for. As soon as both these issues were solved in episode 9, the interest in the show immediately evaporated and what followed was a bullshit killer revelation and a retarded time skip nobody could take seriously.

Basically, while the show was using forced drama and a sickening romance between a man and a little girl, everybody was blinded to its problems. The second those were dealt with, they instantly woke up and realized it was crap all along. The whole thing is yet another example of why crap like Sword Art Online become super hyped and loved by everybody while they air, and then are hated as soon as they are over. The anime community is a cesspool of immature people who can’t think straight and let emotions cloud their perception. And then some wonder why Donald Trump is so adored for all the ridiculous things he does. Faith in humanity, lost.

1/10 story
7/10 animation
7/10 sound
3/10 characters
3/10 overall
Howlorihara's avatar
Mar 24, 2016

I wanted to love this anime.  From moment one I was drawn in by the intriguing story and the understated characters.  I wanted to like it but… there were a couple of aspects that did not shine so brightly.  When you have a show that does so much brilliantly, it’s hard not to feel a little cheated when certain aspects fell so flat.  This is why I understand how the fan community is reacting.  Half the reviews I read are giving it a 10/10 and praising it as a masterpiece and the other half are giving it a 1/10 and saying it's horrific.  As is obvious from the rating I gave it, I am one of the few people who are somewhere in between.

Story:  The story revolves around a man named Satoru Fujinuma, a struggling manga artist, who has a special ability that (without his control) jumps him back in time (usually only a couple of minutes) when somebody’s life is in danger.  The first episode deals a lot with getting us used to this power of his and explaining his relationship to his mother.  The two have been distant since he was a child due to a series of murders that occurred when he was 11, resulting in a number of his friends ending up dead.  However, when his mother is murdered in the present, Satoru’s time traveling ability jumps him back in time to try and stop the murders of the past and, possibly in turn, stop his mother’s death.  The interesting thing about the story is that, on the most obvious of levels, this story doesn’t work.  If I were to classify the story in a category, it would likely be time travel or mystery.  Yet, the show doesn’t handle either of those categories particularly well.  As a story about time travel, the rules of time travel don’t seem particularly clear.  A couple of times, we don’t even see the result of what would have happened if he hadn’t stopped said event from happening.  There are times when he has no control of his abilities and times when he does.  Neither of those things bother me too much but what does confuse me is this stories stance on “fate” in relation to the theme of time travel.  On a basic level, this seems like a story where a character has the ability to change what has been fated.  Yet, many of these time jumps occur before a death has occurred, or where Satoru has no idea what the consequences would be if he did nothing.  Thus, this doesn't seem to be Satoru's ability per say.  If it were, he would either have control over it or he would be jumping around at random.  This take seems to imply that an other worldly omniscient party is using him as a tool to force fate to occur.  It made me wonder what was going on behind the scenes to allow for this strange time traveling to occur in the odd way that it did.  Why is he necessary in this concept of “fate”? (But this is a thread for another essay) Thus, the time travel in this show doesn’t seem to make much sense logically or thematically.  As a mystery, the show breaks just as many rules.  Obviously, the key to preventing the murders of the past is to find the murderer.  The only problem is that the murderer is not a secret.  We see the murderer a number of times.  We have a basic idea of what the murderer looks like.  The only problem is… there is only one person that looks at all like the murderer in the whole show.  Immediately, audience suspicion goes to one person… and stays on that one person because there is no one else to suspect.  By the law of mystery stories, a murderer must be someone the audience has been introduced to, but usually we get a couple of options of people to suspect.  Just about every fan of the show guessed pretty quickly “who dun it”.  However, in spite of these two primary parts of the show essentially failing, this show did something surprisingly right.  As a story about “friendship” this story was handled in a way that most other shows never accomplish.  Ultimately, what I loved the most about this show were the character interactions and the moments created between them.  A lot of the interactions that happened between the characters were not essential for the plot to continue.  We didn’t need the scene where Satoru takes Kayo up into the mountains.  But, as an isolated moment, it was beautiful.  We become invested in these people and how they feel about each other.  I’ve seen so many shows where some awful friendship speech gets written in and it ruins things.  Most shows don’t have the maturity to handle a show about friendship without throwing in tropes like “I’m secretly in love with you”. The show does not handle it's ending well.  It feels like a quick tie up of most loose plot threads.  Even so, I still believe that the journey to get to the end had a lot of magic to it.

Animation:  The animation was deceptively simple.  It doesn’t have quite the flash and glitter of a show like Attack on Titan but these animators are definitely smart (if not sometimes a little too smart).  If you know how to look for them, there are a million little hints in the animation that give you some kind of foreshadowing.  It’s very clear that this show knew where to focus their attentions and what details needed to be added in.  Plus, even when I, as an audience member, knew that something was going to happen, it didn’t stop me from having a strong reaction to the scenes.  It’s largely because it was animated so well.  Unfortunately, this is also a negative for the show.  You see, if you know anything about symbolism you can read these scenes like a book.  For instance, I was immediately drawn to the lighting in this show.  They know how to set the tone with the lighting and they do it pretty damned well.  Yet, this also lead me to say things like, “This character is constantly put in shadow.  I bet there is something shifty about him/her,” way earlier than I should have been able to.  The animation got a bit cocky and gave a couple of things away pretty quickly.

Sound:  I love the opening and closing themes.  I am truly addicted to them.  Also, these voice actors were so phenomenal.  Plus, I was surprised to learn that a lot of the voice actors were relative new comers, which made me really excited about the idea that these talented individuals might get a lot of recognition for this show.  I will admit that there was one song that tended to play in light and happy moments that tended to draw me out of it but never in a major way.

Character:  This, I would say, is where the biggest successes and also the biggest failures in this show lie.  This show seemed to fail pretty hard with its villains and excel with it’s heroes.  Let’s start off with the bad to get it out of the way.  The murderer’s motivation is never explained well.  Sure, we get an explanation, but never one that convinced me that this person was anything more than an evil psychopath.  In the same vein, we also have an abusive mother in the story.  The characterization for this character was painfully bad.  For most of the story she just comes off like a demon who beats her kid because she can.  Again, we get an explanation for why this character does it but it’s so rushed that we have no time to feel any real human emotions for this character.  Essentially, there isn’t much in between with villains in this show.    If you are a villain you’re the worst piece of human scum.  Moving on to the good!  Satoru would have been so easy to make boring.  On the surface he is astonishingly normal because he believes himself to be average.  Yet, the more you get to know him the more remarkable he becomes.  He meddles in the lives of others because of a knee jerk reaction to use his time traveling powers for good even though he finds himself in so many situations where he has no idea how to fix the situation.  I love that, for most of the series, Satoru is continuously trying to do the right thing but failing.  This actually needed a lot of depth because his intentions are in the right place but usually has to face the fact that he still ends up messing up some really crucial moments.  Kayo Hinazuki is a pretty tragic character.  She was one of the children who was murdered when Satoru was a kid.  As a child dealing with a lot of abuse it is easy to see how shut down she is.  In scenes where she is blamed for things she was not responsible for she just takes the abuse with this distant look in her eyes.  It’s obvious that she feels that whatever abuse she is given will happen no matter what she does.  Yet, we also get to see her drawn out of her shell with people she really trusts and how much her personality changes when she is not alone.  Satoru’s mother is an extremely well written character especially since we get to see her in a couple of possible time lines.  She’s a fighter through and through.  She seems to look at Satoru as someone she can trust entirely and never questions that his intentions are positive.  Yet, at the same time we also get to see her as a mother who has become estranged from her son due to traumas that neither of them knew how to handle and help each other with.  Airi Katagiri needed a little more fleshing out.  She is obviously a key character in the show but mostly shows up to barely become important before she’s gone again.  She was likeable for what we saw of her but I would bet money that her role is bigger in the manga.  I think a lot of what makes these characters so effective is that we get to see how they are alone in contrast to when they are with others.  This obviously ties into the themes of loneliness and loss but is also a very effective way to write characters.  Satoru’s childhood friends always felt a little strange to me.  First we have Kenya.  This kid is far too smart.  He’s incredibly serious and very adult even as a pre-teen.  For a long time I thought he was a time traveler like Satoru because he was so intelligent and so mature.  I enjoyed his character, but he never seemed to fit into the plot organically.  Hiromi was a complete anomaly to me.  Of the kids who were murdered when Satoru was a child, Hiromi was one of them.  This was a person that Satoru knew well and hung out with every day.  Yet, he had so little reaction to this kid’s death that it took me a long time to figure out that he was one of the murdered children.  This is especially strange when we can compare Satoru’s reaction to the death of his friend Hiromi to the death of Kayo (who he barely knew) and he is obviously more broken up about Kayo.  I never quite understood that.

I trusted this show.  I think this show gained a lot of people's trust very quickly which resulted in a lot of fans feeling like they trust it to be a masterpiece in spite of its problems or betrayed when things went wrong.  What it get's right is spot on.  It handled itself so well on so many issues that I didn’t see its faults for a long time.  It has a lot of faults.  Yet, even so, I would say that the journey it takes you on isn't ruined by its faults.  I would definitely recommend it.

7.5/10 story
8.5/10 animation
8/10 sound
7.5/10 characters
8/10 overall
Jenuine's avatar
Mar 25, 2016

Time travel isn't anything new to anime. We've seen it done again, and again, and again. Sure, some stories really throw a curveball into a mind-blowing plot, while others bite the dust of overused concepts. Every single episode of Erased is a cliff hanger. You want to know what's going to happen next every single time. It isn't your typical "better go back in time and save some friends" story. It really has it's own personal twist on it. The characters are easy to fall for, the main characters especially over the lesser important ones. While there's little relationship between Satoru and the 2 different girls that the viewers would like to ship them with, the story is really heartwarming and mature. There are many different layers to it. When you think you've figured out what will happen next, you're thrown in a completely different direction. The art for the most part is really enjoyable, and the sound is clear. This is a fantastic anime that I'd recommend to anyone looking for a new favorite. I don't see why the reviews are so mixed between low and high, but this definitely gets a 10 on my list. The few nitty gritty details don't knock it down to a 9. 

10/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
10/10 overall
SpanglishJC's avatar
Mar 28, 2016

Hype, hype and more hype. This show got hyped up to heaven and back, something which achieved it the huge popularity it garnered during the 2016 winter, however at the same time it was unable to live up to that hype for many. Now in my case I came into this show without knowing a single thing about it, other than "oh that is a nice looking poster, I like those tags too". It was only when I got a few episodes in that I noticed it had gotten to #1 on the site (it since has lost this spot). 

Does ERASED deserve #1? Well I can only speak my own opinion and personally I think it doesn't, if only because there are shows I prefer to this one, and on top of that I find it's difficult to define a singular #1 show. However, I still massively enjoyed this show, and will be among the better shows that I have enjoyed.

Story and Characters

One of the main reasons I managed to enjoy this show was because I did not watch it primarily as a mystery/thriller. The thriller aspect is good, always leaving me wanting to see more at the end of an episode but I will admit the mystery is not particularly strong. It's not too difficult to figure out who the killer is after a few episodes and I totally understand why some people might dislike this. Thing is, I instead watched this primarily as a progression of the character Satoru, from his rather bleak lifestyle as a struggling mangaka, regretting the fact he could have saved his fellow classmate and then being given the chance to correct that mistake and change things for the better. I found that the most important part of the show was his interactions with Kayo, attempting to become friends with this quiet girl as well as save her.

The story itself is pretty simple. Satoru needs to find out the identity of a serial killer whilst saving his victims after he inadvertently travels back in time. He does this by building a friendship with the killer's first victim Kayo, whilst also trying to implicate her mother as an abusive parent, which is very evident.

The protagonist Satoru and the main female character Kayo are the highlights of the show. It's the interactions between these two that sold the show the most for me. It might seem a little strange to see a 29 year old man in the body of his 10 year old self with a 10 year old girl, especially as there are hints of romance here and there, however it never get 'weird'. Love is not something a 10 year old can really fully understand and Satoru never takes advantage of this in some horrible way.

The other characters were also pretty good. Some get less screen time than they deserved, looking at Airi here, but they filled their roles pretty well. I won't talk about them too much as I do not want to give away anything but some of the characters we have are, his mother who is there for Satoru's moral support, Kayo's abusive mother, their homeroom teacher, a man named Yuuki who likes to talk to some of the kids from the school, Satoru's group of friends, principal friends being Hiromi and Kenya and of course the serial killer whom is unknown. There were no characters I thought were bad, just that a few could have had a bit more fleshing out.

I was satisfied by the end of the show anyways. I think they could have elaborated more on the killer's motivations, and maybe had less of a montage finish but all in all I am happy with its conclusion.

Sound and Animation

I liked the soundtrack used throughout. Always fit the mood well although I would probably not listen to it on its own. However, the OP and ED were great and probably my favourite for this season.

As for the animation it was pretty good. There weren't any dodgy features that I noticed and it did the job. Expressions in character faces were done well and some of the backgrounds were really good. 

Conclusion

So, all in all, this was a great series that I had a lot of fun with. The mystery elements were rather weak but it was very good at keeping my excitement between episodes.

I can recommend this show, just be aware that if you watch this expecting a great mystery story you may (probably will) be disappointed.

A SpanglishJC ‘Review’

9/10 story
8/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
9/10 overall
CaptainSlow's avatar
Mar 25, 2016

What I Liked: The tense atmosphere. The various film motifs added a nice visual touch to the series. Satoru's mum. The interpersonal relationships in the show. The utterly perfect soundtrack. Shinnosuke Mitsushima was brilliant as the despondent Satoru. Cinematography was top-notch. Great Opening Theme. The strong, well-paced first half. The animation is marvellous, with simple character animation and some beautiful stand-out moments.

What I Didn't: The pacing becomes rushed in the second half. Yashiro, for being so flatly characterised. Some dramatic moments felt overly melodramatic. Depending on one's take on Episode 10, the show trips over itself in the mystery department. Simple but lacklustre ending. Some side characters lack depth and/or interest. The Ending Theme's animation feels completely out-of-place, as if it's reusing material from another show. Red eyes for the villian? Really?!

Final Verdict: Visually marvelous and with some of the best cinematography this side of Hollywood, ERASED starts off strong with a gripping time-travel premise and unnerving atmosphere. Unfortunately, it's not as good as it could have been, as the pacing and the side characters suffer as the series progresses . Still, it's a worthwhile watch if you like a bit of crime mystery with your time-travel.

?/10 story
?/10 animation
?/10 sound
?/10 characters
7.5/10 overall
wawerrewold's avatar
Mar 28, 2016

I was really looking forward for this piece. After watching this... i dont know what to say. Its so bad in so many ways, that its even pointless to explain why cause people who cant see it right away are just too dumb... This anime is chaos, you cant even say whats going on there. You just ask questions to yourself over and over again: "Why the people there are so dumb? Why the main protagonist is doing this and not that? Why is he acting like 10 years old kid when he is 29? How can he be attracted to 10 year old girl when he is 29? Why is he time traveler? Whats the drama when you know main antagonist from the first episode? What is his reasons, why is he evil? Why the f*ck a man got divorced, lost his job and left the town because someone accused him for stealing a FREAKING CHOCOLADE BAR? Why the main protagonist is trying to save some random girls instead of trying to catch the bad guy? Why is the time goes EXACTLY the same why after he altering the past?" And many many more questions. And you never get answers. So bad

1/10 story
8/10 animation
7/10 sound
1/10 characters
4/10 overall
PurplePeopleEater's avatar
Mar 28, 2016

9.5 out of 10. Honestly, I expected this anime to be good after watching the first three episodes, of course I excpeted that from several anime this season and found myself really disappointed, but this one really was good.

For twelve episodes, the story managed a lot without feeling rushed or lacking. Normally there is plenty for me to rant about when it comes to short animes....this one isn't giving me much to rant about at all. There were quite a few characters, but it never felt messy or confusing and it didn't feel like any of them were underdeveloped. The story covered a decently large time period but never felt rushed or like it was skipping over important or interesting moments. The ending was an actual ending and it felt like it closed everything up nicely. Even though that ending could have left it too open, it didn't feel like that at all. I felt like I recieved closure. I feel satisfied after watching it. There were no stupid filler episodes (episodes that don't really contribute to the main story and are more comedic or fanservice type but overall a waste of time) and I didn't find my interest wavering, it stayed solid throughout. The characters were diverse. The ending wasn't what I expecte nor was it something I could have predicted, but it worked out really well. The actions of the characters made sense and fit the characters. It wasn't overly predictable. The story felt well organized. Even though there were only twelve episodes, I felt the same satisfaction as if it were a really good 24 episode anime. It managed to fit so much in and managed the time perfectly. It was steady and consistent. Seriously, how am I supposed to rant. Well I guess I'm sort of ranting about how this anime did so many things right that I can't type up any of my usual rants for short animes, but I guess that's a good thing.

The story reminds me of Steins Gate with less science and scifi elements. Really, the only unrealistic element in this is the phenomenon the main character experiences allowing him to go back in time and fix something. Like Steins Gate, the main character is desperately trying to change the events of the present and future by changing the evens of the past, although in Erased it's a much more distant past and in Steins Gate it's a much more distant future. Erased is also less complex. Actually, it keeps it relatively simple.  

The animation sort of reminds me of Welcome to the NHK for some reason. It's not overly bright or dark. The first word that comes to mind is realist whether that makes any sense or not. 

The sound didn't stand out to me which is not unusual.

I admit I was a little unsure about this anime. It was getting high ratings from the beginning and seemed to be doing well and that isn't always a good sign. For instance, SAO got a lot of good ratings and that was pretty terrible. Plenty of animes get plenty of hype and plenty of them aren't worth even a tenth of the money and resources used to make them. Anyway this anime and The Prince Of Stride seemed popular this season and both ended up being good..... on the other hand the rest of the first season animes this season.......well we won't go there. 

I do think that this is a better anime for more mature audiences not because of violence or language or anything, but I think it is probably more appealing and easier to apprecciate. And my spelling ability tonight might as well be non existant tonight. 

This is now one of my favorite animes. Even though I couldn't rant, I still had plenty to say.

10/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.5/10 overall
ManyueruDesu's avatar
Apr 12, 2019

I watched this anime when it originally aired in the winter season of 2016, and back then I really liked it, thought it was amazing, and gave it a 10/10 without much thought. A couple of my close friends gave me a lot of crap for that because they think Erased is garbage. It's been three years now, and I don't agree with my two friends that it is a 1 or 2 out of 10 points, but it's certainly not a 10 out of 10 either. I just finished re-watching Erased a second time and have re-evaluated my opinion. 

Story 4/10 - I think the story is creative but poorly executed. There are a lot of things that go unexplained that really bother me. I don't like how we never find out why it is that Satoru is able to time skip or how the hell he has this "revival" power. It's a substantial plot device too. In episode 6, Satoru is framed and gets arrested. He screams at the top of his lungs and is transported back to the past. I think that's stupid. There are a lot of other things that bother me, but this story is character driven, so I'll address a lot of issues in that part of my review. The characters are not great at all really, and since they're driving the story, what could have potentially been a great storytelling remains plain and predictable. There is still struggle, which I like seeing in a good story, however Satoru does win in the end, although it feels like a loss as well cause he missed out on 15 years of his life, not that it matters.  

Animation 10/10 - A1 Pictures did the production for this show. I can't complain at all in this department. It's really well directed. They did a fantastic job creating a winter mood throughout the flashbacks, with consistency in animating rosy noses, cheeks, and puffs of breath in the cold air. There is great differentiation between all the set designs, like the polarity between Hinazuki and Satoru's childhood homes, the school, all the suburban settings at night. The flashbacks have that old fashioned look with the black bars at the top and bottom of the screen playing into the idea of this being a film that Satoru is revisiting. I enjoyed the scenes in the hideouts, they really did a great job creating that "secret base" feel that I'm hoping most of us experienced as kids. Great low-lighting effects in a lot of scenes that felt real. The characters were nicely designed as well. It's the kind of anime I could rewatch over and over again simply because of the feeling that's evoked from the settings. Also, the opening and ending animations are great! 

Sound 8/10 - The sound is superb! Solid voice acting. Great soundtrack and orchestration. The opening and ending theme songs are fantastic. I love the sound effects as well, like the crunching of the snow when the children walk outside, the sound of the ice skates during the race in episode 3, the sound of the film projector consistently bringing us back and forth between present and past, the list goes on. The sound and animation direction are really the saving graces of this show and work perfectly together in creating this winter atmosphere. Almost makes me miss winter a bit, and I totally fucking hate winter. 

Characters 2/10 - This is where Erased falls flat. I'd give it a 1/10 in characters, but I did enjoy the genuinely kind interactions between Satoru's mom and Hinazuki. Starting with Satoru, he's a very bland character with no motivation. He's 29, works at a pizza delivery place, and he's an "aspiring" mangaka. He doesn't seem to really care about pursuing that dream, and I don't like that. Why did it take him until he was 29 years old to actually care about something that happened almost 20 years ago? That doesn't make sense. I know that he tried forgetting about it, but why worry about something that happened so long ago that you can't do anything about in anymore? Then when he's transported back to his 10 year old self, there are several moments when he's interacting with Hinazuki and is either blushing or getting flustered. That's just weird. Assuming he's keeping his 29 year old mindset, he shouldn't be getting flustered by a 10 year old girl. That opens up a whole argument on pedophilia, which I don't want to get into. And again, we never find out why he's able to time skip, especially since after everything is resolved at the end, he says that "revival" doesn't happen anymore. Satoru's friend, but mostly coworker, Airi, is a nice gal, who brings into the show a whole philosophy on wanting to believe in others, which I think is great. However, she tells a story about how her dad got divorced by his mom and excommunicated from his community for stealing a fucking candy bar, what the fuck? And at the end of the show, after the timeline is altered and everybody is saved, Airi is introduced back into Satoru's life as a potential love interest, which is weird, cause again, he is 29 and she is 17. It's really obvious that the murderer is the teacher. Satoru being 29 years old, and having an older mindset than the teacher at the time period he's gone back to should be able to figure out that it's him. For example, he tells the teacher that they've been hiding Hinazuki in the abandoned bus, and then soonafter, all the sketchy stuff that was stored in the bus is gone. It's obvious that it's the teacher. Satoru's mom is great, but she's dense too, like when they're in the car with the teacher and Satoru pops open the glove compartment and a shitload of candy falls out. Like, hello? Are you guys stupid, or is it normal for a shady mid-20s dude to have a glove compartment full of bright colored lollipops and candies? Satoru's friend Kenya is way too smart for a 10 year old. There is no way a 10 year old would just willingly go along with hiding a girl away from her mom for several days. I understand Hinazuki's intentions for wanting to hide, because her mom was being abusive, but her classmates shouldn't have had that same motive. It just doesn't make sense. I don't care much for any of the other children, and Hinazuki's mom is a fucking bitch. So there you go. The only character I really cared for was Hinazuki Kayo, because I feel like she was the most realistic character, and truly had a desire to escape from her sad situation. I think it's fine that she may have had a crush on Satoru in her timeline, cause she had innocent intentions and no idea that Satoru was possessed by his 29 year old self. I think Hinazuki Kayo's writing shows how frightened children don't reach out for help. This brings me to my favorite scene in Erased when Kayo wakes up after spending the night in Satoru's home. She walks into the dining area and looks down at her breakfast and begins to cry at this meal that has been lovingly prepared for her. That moment is perfection. Kayo is the most successful part of Erased

Overall 6/10 -  The score I give Erased is a solid 6 out of 10. I don't think it's garbage, but that's my artist side coming out in that it's a very nice piece of animation and sound. Erased successfully creates a nostalgic winter feel for me. However, the characters are not great and the story is predictable. There was potential for the story to be delivered a lot better, but again, the characters... I think this anime is worth a watch if you're going to look at everything it has to offer, but if you're wanting a great story involving time travel and memorable characters, check out Steins;Gate instead. 

4/10 story
10/10 animation
8/10 sound
2/10 characters
6/10 overall
Lawgun's avatar
Jun 21, 2016

What can I say, did you watch a movie FREQUENCY of 2000 year? If so, you can ignore this anime easily, they have many common elements. I start to watch this anime with scepticism, because it's another new anime with extremely high rating, so many hyped reviews and comments. Suspicious, isn't it?

Animation: It's good, but with some typical scenes, nothing special, not so many backgrounds.

Sound: Nothing to remember, at least music didn't disturb.

Characters: Protagonist is sluggish although he forgot the reason to be like that, but at least he was motivated in childhood. Antagonist is typical evil pervert, also there are: one plain friend with glasses, one smart "I am always watching you!" friend, one energetic "let's do this!" friend, one cute "wow, you are so brave!" friend, one gloomy girl, thankfully she is not typical cudere. Also there are two mothers and two girls, that's it. Oh yeah, wait, there is a schoolgirl which worked with MC and liked him and believe him because of her life story which is ridiculous (chocolate destroys the family in short).

Story: It's trying to look seriously with real life backgound but MC has supernatural ability, it want to be smart detective thriller but you easily can guess who is the killer already in second episode and it's confirmed only in tenth episode by killer himself just like that because everyone is blind. Anime didn't even try to hide the killer by adding some of suspects, there is the only one. In first episode you can see how things are going to be in future episodes, and you'll know how story will end in overall if you are a little optimistic.

I know what people like in this anime, it's the serious one in the age of majority of ecchi and plain comedy anime. This anime trying hard to be a smart one even though it's not. It has 12 episodes only and even so it feels like overextended anime but with too fast paced ending. Absolute equivalent to AnoHana in terms of story positioning and predictability. Watch it only if you are have little experience in anime, detective movies, TV series and books because only like that you won't guess what happening and story will be interesting for you.

1/10 story
5/10 animation
5/10 sound
3/10 characters
3/10 overall
JVAnimeReviews's avatar
Apr 11, 2016

JV's Anime Of The Season: Winter 2016

Winner 2016 JV Anime Award: Best Seasonal Anime

Winner 2016 JV Anime Award: Best Female Character (Sachiko Fujinuma)

Winner 2016 JV Anime Award: Best Ending Song (Sore wa Chiisana Hikari no Youna)

WARNING: MASSIVE SPOILERS AHEAD! (Look for the spoiler tags)

Positive

*Now let’s start with the first of many positive points being the animation. Now the animation of the anime in general was as good as I expect it to be from A1 but there’s something else I want to tackle. And that’s the fact that there was a difference in screen width between scenes that take place in the past and in the present. All the scenes that take place in the past are animated in a smaller screen than scenes from the present where the anime uses widescreen. At first I found this to be a bit of a bother until I figured out what the meaning was of this difference. The use of the smaller screen width gives the impression that we’re looking at a recording from the past, like it’s a movie. This is also linked with the opening sequence were we see young and older Satoru getting into a cinema and watch a movie. That was very cleverly done by A1, bravo.

For a video review, check out my Youtube channel. Link on my profile page.

Another thing I want to mention about the opening sequence and this isn’t really a spoiler so don’t be alarmed was that we can see the killer in the intro sequence. Now before you all go shouting “Spoiler!” in the comments, it’s impossible to see it unless you know the exact moment when the killer appears. I learned this a few episodes before the end and even if I tried I still couldn’t see it. The killer appears like halve a second so you won’t even notice it.

*The connection between the smaller screen width and the past is also found in the opening song of ERASED. This anime didn’t use a new song but instead a song that was released in 2004 being Re;Re; from Asian Kung-Fu Generation. Just like the screen width this was again a reference to the past which is so important in this anime.

From the OP I can move to the ending song: Sore wa Chiisana na Hikari no Yo na. The best ending song of this season, I loved it every single episode. Btw if you want to hear an excellent piano cover of this song, I will put a link here to Theishter’s video. He made an amazing cover of this great song. I will also put a link to his channel in the description box so you can go check him out.

*So I’ve talked about the animation and the music, let’s than move to the characters because ERASED had some amazing characters, some in the positive sense other in the negative. Let’s start with the main character Satoru. If he was a real person, he could only be described a hero. He always puts others before him and is willing to sacrifice everything to make sure that nothing will happen to those others even when that has serious repercussions for him. How he kept on fighting to save his mother, to save Hinazuki, his relentlessness to make the good win over the evil no matter what just made me have enormous amounts of respect for him.

Next character I want to discuss is Satoru’s mother Sachiko. What an amazing mother was she. She is the best mother figure I’ve seen till today in anime. Not only does she support Satoru in what he tries to accomplish, she also helps him and takes action when it’s necessary. Like when the entire bullshit around Hinazuki and her mother comes out, she steps up and does something about it. That’s not something you see often in anime where a “side character” comes and makes the story move forward. Extend that to real life, how many people would act like Sachiko, let me tell you not a lot. Now aside from her being an interactive character in stead of just screen filling, like Satoru she cares so much about others and shows so much empathy towards others. That is not only towards her own son but also to Hinazuki. Which brings me to, to me, one of the best scenes of the entire anime. That scene after Sachiko took in Hinazuki to get her away from her mother and Hinazuki wakes up to see breakfast standing ready. A breakfast that was made with love in stead of just some change or a piece of toast. OMG the feels were so real in that scene, I barely kept it dry there. To see Hinazuki, who had forgotten what it feels like to be loved, getting that sparkle in her eyes again by witnessing what a lot of us take for granted made my hearth brake and dance at the same time. That was another confirmation of the awesome mother that Sachiko was.

On the other end of the spectrum we however had Hinazuki’s mother. What a fucking, irritating and completely apathetic bitch was she. Wow I hate her so much, it had been since Makoto from School Days that I ever hated a character so much. That thing I don’t even call a human being anymore, she didn’t deserved to live. People like that don’t deserve to life in my eyes! And when we get like her sad backstory, I didn’t give one single fuck about that. There’s nothing in the entire world that can justify her actions, nothing! During that scene I felt the same way that Hinazuki felt there: “I don’t give a fuck, you got what was coming for you, you bitch!”

*Okay, let’s calm down and proceed to the next positive point being the cliffhangers in this anime. I’m surprised that I didn’t have a heart-attack at one of these cliffhangers. There were multiple episodes where the tension was building to such high levels that my hearth almost beated out of my chest and that the anime would say “Nope, not today. You can wait another week to see how it continues.” But that’s what made me look forward to thursday every single week. Every week I was counting down the days till the next episode because this anime had me glued to my screen of anticipation. With ERASED I felt the same I felt with Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso last year, I couldn’t wait till the next episode and that’s what makes a good anime in my eyes.

*Combined with those cliffhangers was the first episode which made the entire anime community stand in awe. What a bombshell was that first episode, what a way to start your anime. You know, there are anime’s that, from the first episode you watch, you know that it will be good and ERASED was one of those. I had put this anime on number 1 on my To Watch list for the Winter 2016 season because I had really high expectations and after that mind-blowing first episode I knew that it wasn’t going to disappoint me.

Now comes the point where people who haven’t watched ERASED yet, which you should, to skip the next part and go straight to Negative. I’m going to discuss the story now and I will tell a few SPOILERS.

*The main point of the story I want to discuss were the unexpected plot twists of ERASED, starting with the identity of the killer. Honestly I did not expect it to be Yashiro, I didn’t. People were calling ERASED out saying that it was so clear who the killer was but to me it was just too obvious that it would be Yashiro. A-1 perfectly used the concept of hiding in plain sight. They delivered so many, way too obvious clues that Yashiro was the killer that it seemed unlikely that he was the killer. So when it then was revealed in episode 10 that Yashiro in fact was the killer all along, I was surprised. They fooled me into thinking that it was too obvious.

Then the next 2 unexpected twists come from episode 11 which I like to call the “Yoo, wtf-episode” because I said those same words a few times during that episode. Starting at the beginning where we see Sachiko, clearly turmoiled, trying to live her daily life. And by the way the previous episode ended I thought that Satoru was dead. It was so obvious, too obvious, that Satoru died and I was waiting for some deus ex magina moment to bring him back which would have been a negative point. But then the anime completely blew me of my feet by giving us that scene where we see Satoru lying in bed, living like a plant, revealing that he was in a coma of the past 15 years. That was the first “Yoo!” moment of that episode. This is why A-1 Pictures is one of my favorite animation studios, they always do things that I didn’t expect.

The next “Yoo” moment is the moment where the community still talks about till today and that was the reunion between Satoru and Hinazuki and where we learn that Hinazuki has a child with Hiromi of all people. And then the anime world went apeshit, everyone calling out Hinazuki that she NTR’ed Satoru and everyone just kept hating on her for the fact that she was now with Hiromi. Now, you know, from previous reviews, that I absolutely despise NTR. But here I must counter all the Hinazuki haters. See, to me this wasn’t NTR. 

I mean honestly what did you expect? Satoru was in a coma that they didn’t know if he was ever going to wake up from. Even if Hinazuki had feelings for Satoru, which we never get official confirmation on, did you really expect her to wait by his side the entire time so that they could live happily ever after? Life goes on and she moved on and this unexpected turn of events made Satoru’s character even more awesome. Because here, again, he wanted Hinazuki to be happy. She’s happy now but it costs him his own feelings. More prove of the awesome character that Satoru was.

*And then we have the ending. And also here I want to counter the people that “hated” on the ending because quite some people including fellow reviewers Chibi and BCG were disappointed by the ending. They found that the way how the whole story ended kind of lame. But again what did you expect? That Satoru was going to kill Yashiro? Satoru wasn’t the character to just kill him and ERASED wasn’t the anime to kill Yashiro and be done with it. So I definitely wasn’t disappointed by the end, it fitted the anime perfectly.

*So after that at the bridge scene I thought the anime was done and wrapped up. Until that butterfly appeared again and I was like “What?”. And then we see that female figure in the distance and I thought “Could it be? Could really be Airi?” because I had given up hope of her getting together with Satoru. And then it was Airi and I must say that I was literally dancing of joy during that scene. My God I was so happy to see Airi making a reappearance, it made me end this anime with an awesome feeling.

Negative

*Now I do have a few small remarks to make about ERASED. The first one being that I felt that both Airi and Kenya weren’t used to their fullest potential. Airi did have a big impact on the story midway through the anime but it could have been more. Same can be said about Kenya in the past. He could have had more impact on Satoru and on the development of the story line as a whole.

*And another point is that some things weren’t explained in the anime like what happened between episodes 10 and 11? That’s something that is explained in the manga and there are more things that were skipped in the final 2 episodes. They also went quite fast over the psyche of the killer and also that is explained in way more detail in the manga. Seems like another one for the ever growing To Read list.

Conclusion

So as a conclusion, I can only applaud A-1 Pictures for delivering another awesome anime. I thought they would have needed a moment after the success of Shigatsu last year to come up with another great anime but here they did it again. ERASED glued me to my screen every single week and that’s why I’m going to rate Boku dake ga Inai Maichi at a well deserved 4,5 stars. I think that this will be one of those anime’s that, when I rewatch it, I will discover more things that I now completely missed. ERASED was definitely my AOTS and I wonder what’s going to stop it from becoming my AOTY.

9.5/10 story
8/10 animation
9/10 sound
8.5/10 characters
8.8/10 overall
Fluffs's avatar
Dec 24, 2018

This anime sucks you right in, it's very easy to binge-watch (fitting, seeing it's on Netflix) and it's a good way to waste 8ish hours of your life.

Story: I was skeptical about time travel aspect at first, which is why I avoided watching this for years. Seeing Satoru's childhood was quite interesting, the story is heartwarming and the only issue with the story was the ending. It seemed so out of place, like something you would see in an OVA that comes out years after the show finished airing. I would like to point out that the story was a bit predictable, but I wouldn't say it's a negative thing 

Animation and Sound: I loved the way this anime looks, snow, fire, all of it was beautiful. Character design was quite nice too. 

Characters: Kayo was just wonderful, I enjoyed watching her character develop. Sachiko was amazing as well, best anime mom so far ^^ Kenya was my favorite, wish he had more screen time.

It was a bit too easy to figure out who the bad guy was, I wanted to think it was wrong, but it was a tad too obvious

Overall, one of the best anime I've seen in 2018. Would definitely recommend, concept is fairly unique, characters are likable, love story aspect is nice too (especially the ending). 

Secret Santa 2018 Review (thanks for this one!) 

8/10 story
9/10 animation
8/10 sound
7/10 characters
8.5/10 overall
ClubFoot's avatar
Sep 30, 2019

“Erased” is a tale about loss, revival, and the butterfly effect. To quote Jimmy Gator from “Magnolia“: “we might be through the past, but the past isn’t through with us”. It’s another story for Shinnosuke Mitsushima as Satoru Fujinima. He can travel back in time but not many people know maybe except his mother. He can travel back to the past to the future with the help of a fragment of memories. It’s a blue butterfly by the way. The protagonist can correct the mistakes he has made in the past. In essence, he got a miracle that is the second chance. His ability to travel in time is a unique power but there is a consequence he must maintain as well. Whether his friends, family, himself, there is a bet on the table.

To begin with, this is a psychological thriller by A-1 Pictures. It’s a tale about the protagonist’s life and responsibilities to such an event. He is a cynical guy but behaves normally in general. However, such a strange event can make it intense yet so curious. The first episode concludes this very well. There is a fragment when he successfully prevents an accident. After that, he found himself, and his mother, killed by a psychopath. Awakened consciously, the ratio of the screen changes, noticeable that this is the past. The psychopath connected with his past as well as he found himself in his graduate school.

In terms of storytelling, this is one of the unique shows. It’s a combination between “The Butterfly Effect“, “Donnie Darko“, and so many more. The first to three episodes introduce how an event, memories and narrative can work. It’s interesting for a story theme like this and this show did it well. It’s a tale about family relationships especially between the protagonist and his mother. Then you get an important character, Aoi Yuuki as Kayo Hinazuki. She is a lonely young girl where she died in the current timeline. In addition to the protagonist relationship, the show introduces the main protagonist and heroine relationship. You also know that Kayo’s mother is abusive and manipulative.

To conclude my honest feeling, I love this show. But, the problem of the show lies in an overreacting from the characters. Yes, time-travel isn’t something new. But, there is a line why people appreciate it the most. In this show, everything is completely random. It allows you to predict how comes the protagonist chooses his decision or where it goes in the future. To compare with “Primer“, one of the most ambitious films about time travel, both of them are subtle. “Primer” never shows how the pay-off clearly until you have to watch it closely. In “Erased”, clearly when the theme is only able to develop the protagonist and all the characters to improve more. Simply because we anticipate more outcoming rather than making a change into the direction and narrative.

For instance, the protagonist can prevent various events from creating a new timeline in the future and past. Maybe because the protagonist never made a mistake. Maybe the manga has more things to do with the protagonist. It’s rather than he did everything in one try. In this show, it’s so apparent with the protagonist’s decision. So, to conclude, the protagonist can only take one choice he already knows is wrong. The choice is to protect Hinazuki. Not others or not prevent such terrible events in the current events. I know everything leads between Hinazuki, the psychopath, and the current events. I mean, it’s not a noticeable mistake.

Another issue with this anime is the purpose of the protagonist. We know that Satoru is another typical otaku protagonist. He snuck into the past to prevent terrifying events in the future. But, it’s just the protagonist sneaking into the past with no clear goal. We know in the first episode to prevent the psychopath from killing his mother. Turns out, the story drives the protagonist by his circumstance. The show probably has a good romance, especially between Satoru and Hinazuki. It’s too narrow when try to tell another space. Yeah, I know. It’s because everything has a red thread from the first to the last episode.

I don’t want to be a guy who knows everything from the first episode. Yeah, we know who was the mastermind behind all these scenes. The psychopath feels like didn’t do many things besides we saw all these in the protagonist’s mind. Yet, it’s another great one-dimensional villain. In terms of the decision, the antagonist picks the worse decision in so many ways. You also see a lot of foreshadowing and hints in every scene. But, the point of the show and the center is probably the stoicism girl, Hinazuki. It’s a nice development when she transforms from soulless characters into the most kind of person. Except for the ending which many people pissed off. But, I get it, I get it because that’s how humans are.

One of the best things about this show as well as the animation and the soundtrack. The animation portrayed very well the current event and the past. It’s like watching a movie in a cinema. The art portrays different states of our feelings and physical conditions of the characters psychologically. The expression is genuine as for the design characters. They don’t show the antagonist directly either. And the opening and ending theme songs are the best especially the Asian Kung-Fu Generation one. The score fits with its moment and scene. It’s sad, thrilling, melancholic, etc. A well-crafted aspect, offering us with its themes because of these aspects.

“Erased” has so many things to talk about, has potential at the beginning yet fails from its premise. Not the majority of the issue but instead, it’s another take to a minor issue. While the direction of this anime is strong, I also enjoy the show. On the other hand, it’s just lacking any of the key elements like the characters, the story, and the theme. An interesting take with its theme would be better if more complicated. I mean, I don’t hate the ending personally. But, this is another ride and experience of the rollercoaster.

6/10 story
7/10 animation
7/10 sound
5/10 characters
6/10 overall
Blackmagebrad's avatar
Mar 29, 2017

So here's a short summary of the positives of this show.

-Like 99% of anime from the past 5 years, it's pretty.

-Kayo (the little girl with an abusive home) and Satoru's mother are both pretty cool.

-The music, just like 99% of anime from the past 5 years, is pretty nice.

Here are the negatives:

-Time travel is never explained and comes in when it's convenient to the plot, with no explanation ever. No thought is ever given to what it means to change the past, don't expect to see any kind of Butterfly Effects or philosophical musings here.

-The main character is terrible. He never thinks about anything logical; he avoids the police when they think he killed his mother, he lies to his friends in the past about his identity, he never thinks about why he's a loser in the future, and he resets everything in the ending of the show so he can have a happy childhood, possibly causing a serial killer to run rampant all over again. He's awful.

-The story meanders and jumps all over the place, with a random segment in the future in the middle for no explicable reason other than to set up a love interest.

CONCLUSION:

This show is not good. I understand wanting to like a show that has sweet moments, but you can get better moments of people overcoming childhood abuse from Kodocha, you can get better Time Travel dilemmas from Steins;Gate, and you can get an overall better mystery from more or less any episode of Case Closed. If you want to enjoy a school-based murder mystery show where the main character has to solve murders as quickly as he can to prevent any more from happening, congratulations, because you're on the right track to watching or playing Persona 4.

tl;dr 4/10, would never watch again.

1/10 story
7/10 animation
7/10 sound
2/10 characters
4/10 overall
AnonymousW16's avatar
Mar 29, 2020

One of the best mystery anime I've seen. Nice plot, though with protagonist having a superhuman ability to see the future and change it, it was presented beautifully. Also gave life lessons for the viewers. Overall It's an anime that is worth watching and I personally liked it very much. 

9/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
10/10 overall
Osiummaster's avatar
Feb 17, 2016

Congratulations on finding out on one of the most overrated anime of this season! This is the Code Geass without any strategy, the Inception of anime, the SAO without harem. I present you with your seasonal "dumb protagonist has superpowers and a ton of women around him!"

Basically this whole anime is about a protagonist who is dumber than a 7 year old

 BUT THERE IS TIME TRAVEL AND INTHURGALACTIC DIMENSIONS AND SHIT OMGGG SO COMPLICATED!!!! 

NO.

The biggest probleme is that it's trying to appeal to the mainstream audience while still talking about the concept of time travelling and vaguely understood superpowers. It's kind of a detective anime, however there are no clues which are clear enough to make any conclusions. on who the bad guy is

Talking about the bad guy, he's literally just the most EVILLLL guy out there. He apparently knows literally everything and leads the OP into making literally the dubest decisions possible.

There is no speculation possible, there's just gaping plot holes which may or may not eventually get filled in later on. The problems posed are not realistic, such as child abuse which literally no-one cares about in the anime and everyone refuses to do anything about it until a fucking 5 year old kid has to solve it by himself.

 It started off pretty good but it really went downhill very fast in the last few episodes and it looks like they don't have a good surprising plot twist of somekind of detail we all missed, yet they will introduce some new shit to fix the old shit.

It's not an anime for smart people. It's an anime for stupid people who want to feel smart.

(Finished anime after thoughts, carefull spoilers after here)

AHAHAHAHA OH MY GOD DID THAT REALLY JUST HAPPEN IT WAS LIKE A GOLDEN TIME WANNABE 

5/10 story
7/10 animation
8/10 sound
5/10 characters
6/10 overall
D1stant's avatar
Jul 1, 2016

some plot conveniences are used to explain my reasoning but no major spoilers

I don't understand all the hype about this show. the story is second rate with no explanation as to how he got his powers, the main character is 1 dimensional and it calls it a psycological anime, it never adresses what modivates him because lets see, hes just unmotivated for anything, thats why he faisl as a mangaka and works as a deliverer, the power is inconsistant and doesn't follow the few rules it lays out, not to mention paradoxes, there is no counter for the paradoxes that are created every time he jumps back in time. In the melecncholy of haruhi suzumiya at least they bothered to explain how paradoxes wont occur but here its all like what ever they just don't exsist, Re: is better than this, I just find the hype to this series unjustified. it was not an overly exceptional anime. 

6/10 story
7/10 animation
7/10 sound
3/10 characters
5/10 overall
Roksi's avatar
Mar 26, 2016

No spoilers here!


This show is one of the best I've seen. It's not overshooting with the supernatural, just enough to add some dynamic tension by the mystery it creates, and it doesn't just get stuck in cold logic either but really grasps the viewer by the heart on a few occasions.

Animation and sound is good. Nothing too fancy, but nothing that would take away from the experience. Fits the show like a fist in the eye.

Oh, and the ending theme is fantastic, the song is called "Sore wa chiisana hikari no yona" by Sayuri.

The story is refreshing. It's outside the box stuff, and it gets tied together at a very satisfying pace; lots of cliffhangers, one disappointing episode that gets turned on its head, made great, by the following one.

The characters don't feel generic at all and I didn't run into moments where I felt like screaming "why the hell would you do that!?". You'll feel quite attatched to them by the end of the show.

Talking about the feels, this show will give many, but again, in good moderation. It's not trying to constantly pull your heartstrings, it'll also pick your brain. Overall the series achieves exactly what it strives to be. It won't beat studio trigger in animation, it won't startle you with visuals, it won't consume all your life with an epic amount of content, but it will make you feel and think about things and it will definitely keep you entertained with top quality content.

10/10 story
8/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
9/10 overall
aikasenpai's avatar
Mar 26, 2016

ok this anime is fantastic! if you like psychological animes, you should watch this one... it has a lot of feels, a lot of mind blown scenes, and really shocking/intriguing scenes! and i will say that it is extrordinary through and through! i'm actually really surprised that there's a ton of hate for the show... i dont even get it... i'm sorry if you dont like that the dude has a super power... but a lot of shows have that... so i still dont see issues with it, so please watch it! i really liked it! theres a reason it's become so popular guys!

10/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
9.5/10 overall
AnimuIzzy's avatar
Nov 10, 2019

i really liked erased. i really liked the back to the past idea. i wish there was more episodes, cause in the end it was a little confusing. i dont really have a lot to say, except i recomend watching this anime, as it opens up some new exciting genres to watch. you should watch if you like solving crimes, neet's, time travel and etc; then this anime is totally for you. though if you don't like things like implied suicide or murder than don't watch, or watch at your own risk.

things i didnt really like about the anime, is that at parts it felt a bit boring and dragged out. i wish it couldve had more information but ofcourse, thats difficult because the present is always changing.

7.5/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
8/10 characters
8.5/10 overall
LonelyAnimeChild's avatar
Nov 25, 2019

I LOVE THIS ANIME!!!! I am so happy I stumbled upon it. This is the first anime I have committed myself to and I intend to see it through. I liked all the characters so far except for Hinazukis parents. But my favorite Character is definetly Satoru’s mom. 

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
9/10 characters
9/10 overall
Epimondas's avatar
Jul 12, 2016

So far this show feels alot like "The Barber" (2002), which was directed by Michael Bafaro.  The sense of perspective is a little different.  There is also a slight blend sensation from Groundhog's Day, or Sliding Doors, or the Family Man (with Nicholas Cage), or Retroactive (1997), or perhaps even Frequency.  Either way the sense of do over and time reshuffling is similar in all cases.  It is presented in a similar style to a handful of other animes like Another or Ghost Hound.  The style is similar to Ghost Hound to and both have a element of temporal loops or jumps.  In another way, there are times where it is like a riveting thriller with hurried pacing pushing the characters or pursuers upon a character.  The Thriller pursuit element is a bit like Ain.  The description is a bit misleading, deceptive, and incomplete compared to the actual experience.  The title is also a bit misleading and might remind one of the manga version of Re:Zero regarding the more recent chapters and just about the time the witch cultists appear.  This story might actually be very similar to the Dead Zone, but more in the way I suspect it all started than the actual flow of the story.  It is not revealed yet but I get the sense some trauma might have been the source of his phenomal supernatural experiences.  In many respects, it is very closely similar to the story, Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut.

Erased does some of the best work of all anime at creating a sense of depth of it's story and by extension perhaps, the nature of the story compels it's author(s) to lean on forshadowing much more than the average anime.  This is one of the reasons it has much greather depth than most other anime.  The flashback like experiences does an excellent job of providing plenty of background.  Some characters seem to fade too much into the background or just do not appear dimensional enough but the characters that are most central and focused on do get a fair amount of attention and fleshing out.  We learn alot about his childhood and a handful of friends especially those he is trying to save the most.  Two coworkers appear pretty heavily but the fellow delivery worker gets much more than the other.  His mother is such a strong factor in the story at both sides of where it starts and ends up that we learn quite abit about her.  Most of the students we only catch action from when he is interacting with them so in one sense we know as much as he but in another we only really know them well from his time in school so information about them comes out limited.  That approach is like a double edged blade though because in one way, we are not learning much about them beyond that they are students and friendly to him or tease him sometimes about his interests and their own, but on the other we only learn as much as he does or fails to do as a so called friend who only knows them so much.  Such a thing can both hurt and help a story, though it improves a little as the series progresses. Yet still some 'friends' we only know about superficially.  For a time, the series played out like Detective Conan, including the gimmick that makes Detective Conan the character he is.  ***Potential Spoiler** That is, he is an adult in a child's body*** Spoiler close**.  Even without that though, like Conan, he gets friends to help him or rather they jump into help him even when he urges them clear for their own safety but always end up helping him out.  And like Conan, he goes about trying to solve a serious crime, though in this case before it happens.

The ending is rather heartwarming and yet tragic at the same time given what he lost.  It makes me wonder though if he could work around that with all the knowledge he has given his trips.  The animation is slightly better than Fate/Stay Night Unlimited Bladeworks, but not as good as Knights of Sidonia.  It is high quality and near realistic, though the oddball puffy lips on some characters detract from that a bit and does not really feel like it quite fits the realistic style the rest of the anime projects.  Like Knights of Sidonia though, it blends kind of a anime style art work with the oversized eyes and such with enough realism to virtually circumvent the sensation that it is an anime in typical style.  The large eyes are just undersized enough from typical anime styles to work well with the realistic shading, shadows, light, and skin textures featured apart from the anime eyes.  Personally, I think the smaller more realistic eyes are better than standard artwork especially for more adult like and serious stories like this one was.   For the most part, voices seemed to fit the characters pretty well, which sad to say, is a bit unusual since more often then not I find they do not fit the characters as well as the English voices.  That isn't meant to be a biased thing just the truth.  More often then not, I have found voices that sounded way too old, or young for the intended character, or too high or too rough or other wise just a bad fit.  This show does not have that problem.  The music is ok but not outstanding and sound effects do not stand out but then there is not alot other than typical life background sounds and voices.

The series features kids and does not really show much in the way of graphic nature or obscenities but, given the seriousness of the story, I would not recommend it for anyone under 13 and even then you may still want to offer guidance.  Think of the movie 'M' with Peter Lorre, and ask yourself if that subject manner would be ok to watch.  It is a pretty good impressive and statisfying story with more or less a gratifying ending, but I would have prefered one a bit less severe.  One last note, it makes me wonder does murder really have a statute of limitations in Japan? Scary thought.

8.8/10 story
8/10 animation
7.8/10 sound
8.3/10 characters
8.5/10 overall
cy6erseraph's avatar
Feb 13, 2020

Wow... just wow. I basicaly took it all at once, the 12 episodes just flied.  One of the best animes ever. Absolutely brilliant.

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
notoriousj0e's avatar
May 14, 2016

Yet another anime inflated to incredible proportions by hype. Every year we have one. 2012 saw the sub-par Sword Art Online rise to fame. Attack on Titan stole the the show in 2013 with much well-deserved praise. 2015 had many hype-beast anime, but ERASED may be the biggest and the cause of the most passionate love/hate from fans.

After watching Erased, I find it very difficult to assign a genre to it. While it draws several parallels to Steins;Gate (both are time-bending anime that focuses on characters and plot rather than action), the differences are too vast to compare the two too closely. Even the harshest critics of ERASED can't deny the originality of this show. In its best, purest form, ERASED is an beautiful, mature story of friendship with some mystery and a touch of existentialism. At its worst is is a slow and confusing story that relies on contrivance and lacks believability.

First to adress the negatives, the story hinges on the main character's time traveling ability that is random and uncontrollable in nature and never receives an explanation or clarification on the extent of its effects.It is similar to the concept of the Reading Steiner in Steins;Gate, but more confusing. The sheer number of coincidances and anomalies in the story of ERASED can make it hard for some viewers to understand or follow the plot. Secondly, the characters in the show are both its lifeblood and its bane. Satoru, the main protag, is developed wonderfully as he is a stark and boring soul who is given the oppurtunity to right his past and future, and in doing so, finds both purpose and passion. Yet Satoru's counterpoints in the show, Hinazuki's abusive mother and the serial killer, are painted in a broad strokes that lack purpose and depth. Satoru and Hinazuki receive emotional development and support throughout the show from one another and a slew of good side characters,(Sachiko, Kenya, Airi). The villains however simply make appearances. While the mystery and betrayal of the serial killer can be interesting and maybe sinister, the bad mother is just a weak character. Lastly the pacing of the show turns very choppy by the end. A few more episodes could have worked wonders for the show, but instead the final three episodes slap together a conclusion that should have been worked out gradually. For mainly these reasons I have seen some of the most scathing reviews crucifying this show. While these critics raise many valid points that I agree with, it is my opinion that ERASED still has much to offer.

As I touched on before, the main protagonists are developed in a way that is realistic, gradual, and, at times, even touching. Not many anime nowadays have that way of presenting characters, especially mains. Satoru and Hinazuki's story is funny, sad, gripping and beautiful. As a self-proclaimed tough guy, I don't say that often. Yet this is not strongest point of ERASED. This show has a visual quality that is near perfect and unrivaled by anything that I have seen. The detail in every shot is breath taking. The angles, the cinematography, the character designs; all of it is combined into a masterpiece of art that makes the show more beautiful, and even emotionally manipulating. I was surprised at myself, because I can settle for mediocre animation if the story is good(case and point, Berserk is my alltime favorite anime). I found myself absorbed and even dazzled by the subtlety and beauty in the animation of ERASED. The soundtrack is also spot on. Anime of all genres should take note on the visuals and music in ERASED as it blends perfectly with every aspect of the show. (except for when the villains had red eyes. That was kind of silly).

Overall, ERASED is an excellent choice for viewers who appreciate artistic value and a story  of friendship and some suspense. The pros of ERASED outweigh the cons, yet I will not deny that the story was in need of refining on a few points. I  think you should watch ERASED and judge for yourself. You won't regret giving it a chance

9/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
8/10 characters
9/10 overall
ddhid's avatar
Feb 26, 2020

trust me watch this.  this is almost like one of those animes which you look the heck out of to find a second season but find none cos you like it so much. this entire thing is a rollercoaster and i would reccomend you binge this anime as you can keep the atmosphear and really feel the hurts for the characters.

ps you gonna need some tissues

9/10 story
9/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
AltoRoark's avatar
Jun 26, 2019

ERASED is the most tragic kind of failure to witness. To put it simply, it is an anime full of ideas that it doesn’t know how to use. Forging an engaging premise with many mysteries that are yet to unfold, the ideas it had initially presented are suddenly shoved under the rug, only to be pulled back out when convenient, as if they were nothing more than a mere afterthought. And so without the support it needs, the story loses its way and tumbles down into an abyss of mediocrity. There is nothing more saddening to me than the failure of something that could have been excellent if handled some other way.

For a show that comes off as a mystery anime, not much mystery is to be found here. After such a meticulous build up to what would be an exciting murder mystery thriller full of mind games and plot twists, ERASED doesn’t make good use of this. The show suddenly shifts its main focus from the murder mystery tale onto how Satoru will get Kayo rescued, and stays that way throughout the majority of the show, leaving all other aspects of the plot underdeveloped and unexplored. With the amount of mysteries from the beginning, little to no progress is made from there. Satoru rarely considers coming closer to the mystery or making any kind of plan, for he is unable to get Kayo off of his mind. He doesn’t come in contact with any of the suspected individuals nor does he suspect anything along the way. In the end, Satoru confronts the killer through nothing but convenience, making the payoff measly at best. I never felt involved in the mystery up to this point and I was given little to think about. To make matters worse, the identity of the killer is so thinly veiled it’s downright insulting. If you think you’ve guessed the identity of the killer by the third episode, trust me, you guessed correctly. And the show continues to make it more and more obvious to the point where you might as well ditch the mystery entirely. This kind of thing would have worked if the show was intending to mislead the viewer through this method, but assuming this was the case would be giving the writer and the director too much credit.

And now on to the time traveling aspect. Time travel has always been a risky choice when it come to writing stories, due to how difficult it can be to handle. But nonetheless, the “Revival” power beheld by Satoru is an interesting story element that makes way for possibilities. Sadly, this power turns out to be little more than a convenient way of getting Satoru in and out of certain situations, and is neither experimented with nor fleshed out beyond that. In writing, any consequences spawned from the use of time travel is the least of the show’s concern when ERASED doesn’t even bother to take any kind of risk with it. On top of this, the rules on how it operates are unclear, and it only seems to activate whenever convenient for the plot. At first it activates when a tragedy occurs, but then it activates based on Satoru’s emotions. Not only does this create more holes than a colander, it eliminates any kind of tension taking place in the story, which is the biggest kick in the nuts for a thriller. Without the necessary knowledge for any possible outcome, I’m unable to feel any kind of investment. The Revival power is yet another aspect with could have delivered if only the story knew what the hell it was doing.

There are plenty more elements of the story that the show refuses to take advantage of. Jun Shiratori is a close friend of Satoru’s who was falsely suspected prior to the main plot, and yet we don’t ever hear of him again. We are given info on Satoru’s career as a mangaka, and yet it contributes absolutely nothing to the plot. The core plot of ERASED feels so disconnected from the initial premise, that it might as well be only written as a simple story of a child’s mission to rescue his abused classmate. Satoru doesn’t act like a 29-year-old as he should, the Revival power has little involvement in this plot, there is nothing thought provoking about the mystery, and numerous other elements stick out like a sore thumb.

The plot with Kayo Hinazuki wouldn’t be as much of an issue if it held some merit to warrant being the main focus. But this sadly isn’t the case. Kayo is not a bad character, but she isn’t a very interesting one either. She is little more than an ordinary child who suffers from abuse, and is yet to be murdered. Her development is scarce throughout the story. For these reasons, this particular plot would be better off being little more than a few episodes long, which would also clear some room for the mystery and the Revival power to be tampered with. In addition, her parental abuse gets an unnecessary amount of focus, in spite of how insubstantial it really is. Kayo has no psychological struggle we can relate to other than simply needing friends. ERASED fails to realize that the negative effects of parental abuse extend far beyond being lonesome. When a subject such as child abuse gets as much focus as it gets here, I expect it to be fleshed a whole lot more than a mere concept of emotional appeal.

To make matters worse, Satoru is incompetent as hell when it comes to protecting someone, let alone solving mysteries. He never plans things out, and instead dives headfirst into any situation in front of him, never thinking about anything that might go wrong. Why not take a picture of the evidence of Kayo’s abuse when you see it? Why not put a lock the RV you're keeping her in? Why does he try to perform a sneak attack on Kayo’s mother instead of...I dunno...spying on her? Disregarding how bland of a character Satoru is, it’s difficult for me to root for him when he doesn’t even have the thought process of a human being.

It’s worth mentioning that ERASED tries its darndest to have empathy given to any character, whether they be an ally, or a villain. Even the most heinous acts, whether they be child abuse or a murdering spree, is given a motive to show that these characters were actually good people who just did some bad things. But little insight is given to their psychology or their character, and so I remain disconnected, and unable to believe these backstories contribute to any theme or story element other than superficial empathy from the viewer.

ERASED does have strengths. As little meaning as the interactions between Satoru and Kayo hold, they are certainly entertaining to watch. With Satoru being timid and Kayo being composed and dominant, the moments between these characters are most certainly the strongest aspect of ERASED. It gives some life to the story and as such is the main selling point of the show.

The cast of characters in ERASED ranges from being a mixed bag to forgettable overall. Satoru’s introverted nature serves little to the story and his personality isn’t fleshed out beyond a simple good-moraled hero. And yet again, it’s a damn shame his career as a mangaka turned out pointless. Kayo is little more than a plot device whose arc is unworthy of having so much time spent on. The cheerful personality of Anri perhaps serves as a light in Satoru’s dark night sky, so to speak. Too bad that her involvement in the plot or effect on Satoru’s character is minimal. Satoru’s mother is the bomb. She is easily likeable due to having a sense of ration along with her being sincere and practical, as well as being an awesome mother. She is a good character, even if she doesn’t really develop. Every other character is either defined by only their struggles, or is just a blank slate. While some are entertaining on a surface level, pretty much all of them are as bland as a rice cracker in terms of character dimensions. Drama is forged through victimizing rather than actual relatable, human struggles.

Moving on to the visual aspect, it’s rather hit-or-miss. Not necessarily in terms of how it looks, but by how it conveys things. It’s generally a good-looking show overall. The backgrounds are rather lovely and the animation is fluid enough. The character designs, although generic, are very appealing and are well-fit for the characters’ personalities. The directing, however, is handled like a child. Suspenseful and emotional moments are so ham-fisted and over-the-top it’s almost laughable. When I have pretty much gotten the point of what a scene is trying to convey, the directing then takes extra steps to make full certainty that I understand, which only serves to hurt more than help. An example is how inhumanly spastic Kayo’s abusive mother behaves. As far as I’m concerned this isn’t how abusive parents really act. The directing also overuses stylization with its use of color and obvious symbolism, which is often borderline immersion-breaking. Any character with a feeling of malicious intent will be given red eyes, because apparently the viewers are too incompetent to get the point otherwise. On the other hand, the 1988 sequences are given a nice atmosphere to them, making it easy to feel involved in each scene. So while the director seems to be headed in the right direction, he has not proven to be skillful enough based on what we find here.

ERASED is not a bad show. It has its moments, and some deal of entertainment can be found. But the end result of what it was initially hyped up to be is nothing short of a disappointment. With no idea of what it wants to be, clumping numerous underdeveloped plot elements together, along with irrational behavior of the characters, and what we’re left with is a Frankenstein’s monster of a storyline. It is easy to say that the premise of ERASED had overpowered the writing, and would have turned out better if it had been handled by a different author entirely.

3/10 story
7/10 animation
6/10 sound
5/10 characters
5/10 overall
Gzerble's avatar
Jun 12, 2016

Erased has been both hyped up and derided by plenty of people, and both are understandable. Like all shows with great hype, it tends to be polarizing. So allow me to give an audacious response to the show and say "it was pretty good". It isn't particularly deep, it isn't particularly clever, but most definitely the show isn't dumb, bad, or unsuccessful at what it tries. While not the tour de force of technical grace in writing and art, it is more than adequate and has moments of greatness in both departments.

There is one main problem with this show. Steins;Gate is better. There, I said it. The other "time travel to fix things" show has stronger characterization, a smarter plot, and more memorable art. When you think of it, the parallels are obvious. Erased is good, but it just isn't quite as good. But herein lies the rub: it doesn't have to be. It's an unfair comparison to one of the strongest titles of all times.

While certain aspects could have been better, Erased does things just fine. There are plot holes, but nothing that cannot be waved off. People say "but his power is inconsistent", and of course that is true. But since we are outside the realm of plausibility from the start, then that shouldn't matter. Would it have been nicer with more consistency? Perhaps, but it wouldn't get the point across in the same way, so we can't really know. It's an artistic choice that pays off rather well for emotional impact, just like how the Harry Potter books are downright silly once you start poking at the gaping holes books add to earlier ones.

In the end, Erased is enjoyable. It didn't blow my mind, but I do not regret watching it in the least. This is a good show if you're looking for a bit of mystery (that's somewhat obvious), some charming characters (kids that aren't annoying), and a bit of drama (even if a bit forced at times). It's somewhat emotionally manipulative, but that's fine because it isn't over the top. Perhaps the summary is that this is a positive story overall, that did make me feel all warm and fuzzy.

Writing (story and characters):

Technically the writing is rather well done. There are plot holes if you decide to view them that way, but they don't really matter in the big picture. Erased may not be quite as outside the box as Steins;Gate and as such doesn't shine quite as brightly from the writing perspective, but it isn't sub-par by any stretch. This is a character driven show despite the plot points which drive everything forward.

People either love or hate the story here. I lean more towards the "love" side of things. For all the technical flaws the story is a captivating hook to get the viewer interested in the characters. There are some clever touches which are particularly well done, but alas, Erased falls to the superior writing of the obvious comparison. Most of the hate comes from this, because seriously, it is as good as some which are universally lauded.

Where the story truly shines is the character department. It isn't so much about the protagonist, who is rather standard overall, but about the interactions between them. The villains are obvious and evil, which isn't necessarily bad but is definitely the weak point of the writing. The protagonists of Erased are the good, allowing for some great character interactions despite not always behaving like children. They make the implausibilities matter less, much like the characters do in Steins;Gate.

Time travel is the most common destroyer of stories, as it is fascinating yet has been done so very well before. Delicately balancing the writing more on the characters and less on the plot is what makes everything work; the issues with time travel don't matter as much as they should. Erased does not have the best writing, but it is well above average. I'm a sci-fi snob, and what disturbs me with the main plot point isn't quite as big an issue as it usually is.

Art (animation and sound):

Technically, the art is great. It breathes life into the writing, uses some metaphors and classic techniques to keep the feel of the writing on just the right side of the border of fantastic and too far gone. There is a huge amount of details that foreshadow points in the writing, which makes it far easier to follow the time travel antics. It makes it a tad too easy for my taste, and makes Erased one of the simpler ones to follow.

Moments of brilliance surrounded by technically sound execution is the name of the game in the animation department. It may not have much in the way of an out of the box artistic flair, but the technical execution is great. The character designs are a bit on the tame side, which fits the premise well, though there is a bit of a reliance on clothing as an identifier for some of the characters. Also, the use of classic artistic metaphors can spoil much of the plot (as it did for me), which is both a strength (gives a feeling of completeness to the writing) and a weakness (makes things feel obvious).

From the audio perspective, Erased is technically well executed. The soundtrack fits well, the voice acting is great (and doesn't have a forcefully annoying voice for anyone, thank god), and the effect use is low key yet extremely well done. This manages to make the animation and writing gel into a complete package, which is exactly what is needed. Does it particularly stand out beyond that? Not really. It's too standard for that. But this is an obvious choice when dealing with time travel.

Overall the art does a great job. The main weaknesses are that it plays everything safe. Everything in the artistic department of Erased is built to make things fit together despite the time travel element to the story. It's the easy choice, and works very well. It also is what doesn't allow the series to reach the heights that it could.

Overall:

I enjoyed Erased quite a bit. It's a good show. It could have been great had the execution of both writing and art been more adventurous. If you decide to scrutinize every detail, then you can find plenty to dislike, and if you decide to take this series as just a ride then you can greatly enjoy it. My leaning is more towards just sitting back and trying to enjoy it, rather than criticize and nitpick. It's a good view unless you're looking to be critical, and if you are, you may just find yourself disliking it.

6/10 story
8/10 animation
7.5/10 sound
8/10 characters
7.7/10 overall
AnimeFreakMiva's avatar
Jun 9, 2016

Mystery is one of the most interesting things that I can think of when it comes to anime, anything fictional really. The hovering question what the truth is, what the secret of the story really is. It, most often, keeps you invested in whatever story you find yourself in. People that know me also know that mystery is one of my favorite genres and the one thing that I always love finding, especially in anime. So when I actually find one such as that, I will, without doubt, love watching and trying to figure out the true situation. Erased was not what I expected it to be, and that is a good thing. Let's talk about that.  
 

Story 
 

The story at first seem to be simple. We get an introduction to our generic male lead. 30 year old and depressed about the world that he knows and lives. The boring job, the hopeless dream of a future, negative outlook of the world and the relatively bad relationship to his mother. But as the story moves forward we realize that things are not as the seem to be. That the story has another depth to it. Our generic male lead has the power of going back in time. At first just a couple of seconds, minutes. Just about the moment when something bad will occur, and just in time to change that outcome into something better. He has the power to change history.  
 

Not only that but soon we also come to know that the reason for that ability to manifest in him, he had to go through something horrible back when he was a child. After a string of disappearances of his classmates, later found dead. That the police accused the wrong man, that also were a friend of his. Meaning that the real culprit still walks the street. The whole thing gets spun on it's head when yet another tragedy forces him to go back 18 years in the past to solve that one mystery that stayed unsolved. He has to find the real bad guy to make sure that his current future wont happen. So that everything that went wrong never becomes his reality. It makes me think about Heroes, "Save the girl, save the world."  
 

We follow Satoru when he changes his own past to make sure that he saves Hinazuki Kayo from disappearing and dying. Becoming her friend and also making a stronger bond to the people close to him. 
 

So in the end the story turns out to be so much more then just your average mystery, it includes so much more, such as the importance of friends and the ability to trust one and other.  
 

The only problem I had was the ending. It felt a tad rushed and I didn't like some of the outcomes. But aside from that the story held up fine and kept my eyes on it. 
 

Characters: 
 

We have a bunch of characters and it's relative whether one is important, but I will list up three characters, that from my point of view, is the main people.  
 

Firstly of course we have our male lead, Satoru Fujinuma. At first he reminds me of characters like Rock from Black Lagoon and Tatsuhiro Sato from Welcome to the NHK, in the whole hating life and everything around them aspect that all these characters seem to share. But as time moves and the anime continues on Satoru breaks free from this and become a much more warm hearted and easy to like character. He ends up much more caring, openhearted and reliable. Understanding the worth of the people around him. So the pain of losing them becomes even worse and in the end, that motivates him even more to accomplishing his goal. The thing that makes him for me as a character is that he actually changes his past, and learns from his mistakes. 
 

The second character I'm going to mention is our dear cover girl Kayo Hinazuki. One of the three children that disappeared back in 1988, a classmate of Satoru. She starts out the show being the outcast and when Satoru realize that the reason to why she was abducted happened because of her being alone at the park, he quickly makes it his mission to make sure she wouldn't be alone anymore. Kayo seem to be cold and distant and sure that may be true to a start, but as Satoru gets to know her, so does we and that makes us understand exactly why she acts the way she does. And here is the thing what makes this show so deep as it is. Soon Satoru come to understand that the little girl is physically abused at home by her mother and stepfather, hit and thrown into the shed, to later be dunked in iced water so that her face wont bruise up. It's a sad and touching part of the story when you see how much he tries to protect her from her own home. 
 

The third character must be the hardest for me to describe, or rather choose. But I would say it's the killer. And though I know who the person is, I wont spoil it. The killer is however the reason to why everything in the story happens. The character isn't your typical child molester and killer, he think far into the future and plan everything into the smallest detail. Often making sure that someone else ends up looking to be culprit. The only thing that kind of destroyed the character for me was the fact that I understood who the person behind the killings where, sure the show didn't introduced the person as the killer until much later, but as soon as I saw the character I knew it was him/her. But to be fare when the reveal came around I was like "I so called it!" so to be proven right wasn't that bad. 
 

Of course the character sheet doesn't end there, after all the shows include so many other people and relationships, but I wouldn't say that their individual importance was that great. They all had something to bring to the table but overall they all stayed secondary. We have Satorus group of friends that support and aid him when he needs it. His mother that he comes to understand better and starts appreciating their relationship as mother and son. She is definably on of the best characters in the show, as she is lovable and a strong woman with strong morals. There's also the girl that Satoru works with Airi, that aids him in her way, but for me she ends up being the boring and forced character, because the show makes her out to be so important when in reality she's not, at least in my eyes. 
 

Animation and Sound: 
 

The animation for this is stunning. It's just beautiful. Sure the character design is of the simple nature but I guess that's what makes it such a beautiful show. The color pallet and the atmosphere around the whole animation sets both the warmth and the horror in the scenes. Even my boyfriend commented on it, saying that it was really well-made, making him at first believe it was a movie. But what can one expect from a studio like A-1 pictures, a studio that has created many of my favorites shows, that all are beautiful. Anime like From the new world, Fairy Tail, Ano Hana and more.  
 

The music is also wonderful. There's very few tracks that i don't like. The music fits like a glove to the setting and feeling of this anime. Both the thrill of looking for the killer, the happiness among friends, and the horror when something bad is about to happen. Everything seem so much more emotional and that we can only thank our dear Yuki Kajiura for, as she once again, gives us stunning and beautiful melodies.  
 

The Opening and Ending for the show is also wonderful, and as a person that most often skip both of them, I must say that they stayed in my head for a while. 
 

Overall and lastly. Erased  is a beautifully made anime that tackles both mystery and drama. The focus is on the whole "protect from the killer" aspect, but that's not the only thing the anime offers. Sure I was as disappointed as anyone when i watched the two last episodes of the anime, but overall, it was a good show. It kept me invested. I felt for the characters and wanted the best for them. When things went wrong I felt bad. Sure I've watched better anime when it comes to making me cry, but that doesn't mean the show don't have emotional sadness, because it does. One could wish for the better ending, but considering the greatness we all got other then that, I would say that we don't have so much to complain about.

8/10 story
8/10 animation
10/10 sound
7/10 characters
8/10 overall
sw00ty's avatar
Jun 28, 2017

The fact that Erased was not the best of 2016 says a lot about the general quality of much of the anime that came out of 2016.

Put simply, Erased is a mature and well-written 11 episodes which does a hell of a lot of things right and makes few (if any) major missteps. By 'mature', in this context, I mean 'non-puerile'; in a medium which often feels saturated with blood and tits in places where blood and tits aren't especially warranted, Erased FEELS excellent. Beginning with a 29-year old pizza delivery driver named Satoru Fujinuma, we learn how our MC has discovered a latent power named 'Rewrite', which allows him to do-over the last 1-5 minutes upon activation and potentially save a life. The origins of this power are never fully explained but they don't really need to be. When Satoru suffers from a personal tragedy which seems to link to a serial child kidnapper from many years ago, he ends up Rewriting back to his elementary school-age body while keeping all knowledge of the future. Satoru is now determined to stop the murders that plagued his childhood, and prevent events to come from ever... coming.

The premise, to put it simply, is both intriguing and full of potential. Erased has a brilliant atmosphere of darkness and unease, focusing particularly around Kayo Hinazuki, one of the deceased girls who Satoru has always regretted not being able to save. Kayo and Satoru's relationship is magnetic, and contributes to a pervasive sense of threat as you worry about how and when she might die or narrowly avoid death. Ideas about the responsibility of the time traveller, and the dark fate of he who has such knowledge, can be compared to Steins;Gate and Re:Zero (two other fantastic series) but Erased also plays with the parallel narratives of past and present in a way which is really fresh-feeling. Satoru interacts with both characters from his youth and from his adult life, in scenes which I can't really discuss in further details without spoiling, but know that the writing and sense of emotional attachment to these characters are both worth praising. Satoru himself is a complex individual with shades of insensibility and determination that overlap across the narrative. The voice acting and art style contribute magnificently to this sense of gravitas; the cold, snowy landscapes of Satoru's youth, and the oft-muted delivery of lines and dialogue, preserve tension and hint at secrets in a way that other series (looking at you, Attack on Titan Season 2) can only dream of. In a series which approaches matter such as abuse, death and blame, these are all hugely important considerations.

Not everything is rosy: one major complaint which others have brought up is the relative weakness of the last act, which is the only place in which the 11-episode length seems to take its toll (elsewhere, Erased is trim but well-paced). The 'villain' of the piece is also obvious from a mile away, and certain side characters, those who aren't Satoru or Airi or Kenya, sometimes feel as surplus, unnecessary additions.

This said, , and TL;DR, I have no problem recommending Erased to anyone who enjoys a mature handling of mature themes and situations, with a bit of a mild supernatural twist thrown in.

9/10 story
8/10 animation
8/10 sound
8.5/10 characters
8.5/10 overall
Teleickins's avatar
Sep 3, 2016

When I watched the first episode of this episode it caught my attention immediately. The mystery genre is great when done right and time travel is always a winner in my book, but some things about the show disappointed me. I still love this show a lot, but it's mystery fell flat and not everything seemed all thought through.

Looking away from the mystery part though, the drama and the growth of the character shined trough brightly and really tugged on the heartstrings. What I got from this show was emotion, and because of that the mystery part of the show didn't seem so important anymore, like it wasn't meant to be the main part of the story even though the first episode introduced is as such. I found much more joy to see how the main character handled the situation and how he worked through the obstacles he faced, both the good and bad.

So I recommend everyone to give it a chance, it's a beautiful story even with lack of the mystery it promised.

7/10 story
8/10 animation
8/10 sound
7/10 characters
7/10 overall
BannaMan's avatar
Sep 27, 2016

THIS IS THE ABSOLUTE BEST ANIME/MANGA I HAVE EVER ENCOUNTERED I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS! AND WHEN I SAY "BEST" I MEAN BEST AND I HAVE SEEN A L O T OF ANIME/MANGA trust me watch it you won't be disappointed!! 

9/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
Mieya's avatar
Apr 14, 2016

Was good for the 12 episodes. Rushed during the second half due to that fact. Look forward to reading the manga for a more fleshed out story.

?/10 story
?/10 animation
?/10 sound
?/10 characters
9/10 overall
Zirkle's avatar
Oct 19, 2018

I absolutely adore this anime. It's my all-time favourite. People don't like it because of the plot, well tough shit. There's millions of shitty plots out there, and yeah the more I watch it the more the plot falls apart, but I don't care. 

My favourite thing about this anime were the characters. The confusion of being 29 in an 8 year olds body. Barely able to remember anything. The reality of emotions without it being disgusting loli fanservice. The lack of panty shots! There was no sexual fanservice and I loved that. It's so hard to find that in modern anime, and it was so nice. And the mother!! Having a realistic voice!! And realistic features! God the character designs were absolutley fantastic. And showing an abusive family? In anime? Maybe I just haven't watched a lot but that never happens. The parents are always either absent or misunderstood, or their abusiveness is righteous for some reason. The complete lack of sympathy for the bitch when she started crying? Iconic.  

I can't even write a coherent review that's how much I love this anime. I cried so much the fist time. I still cry.. god the THEMESONG threw me for such a loop. So fucking good. I will suck this anime's dick till the day I die and there's nothing you can do to stop me. 

8/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
9/10 overall
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Leafx42's avatar
Oct 17, 2016

Wow. Talk about one of the most conflicted shows I've seen in a long time. I'm still struggling with how I truely feel about it. Maybe writing this review will help me sort it out. Just a warning. I make no promises about spoilers so continue at your own risk.

Sound/Animation:

I'm going to start here as it's the easiest for me to express my opinion. Both sound and animation were extreamly good and what you come to expect from a show with a high production value. I'm not going to dwell on them too much as it's not really what I want to express. Suffice to say that they are both well done, and only an overly critical person would think otherwise. 

Characters: 

Here comes one of my big issues with the show. Satoru and Kayo were well done. I thought both characters had good development to the point it was easy to relate to them. They aren't perfect by any means. They do have some inconsistencies such as Satoru being a 30 year old trapped in a 10 year olds body, yet acts like a child at times. I'm sorry, but you just don't throw out 30 years of experience just like that. His deductive reasoning should have been off the charts compared to his friends. They comment on his maturity, but it should have been much more than that. His knowledge level should be off the charts as well. A 10 year old doesn't even know a quarter of what a 30 year old does. Being able to hide his knowledge should have been a problem. Habits are formed over years and they don't just disappear when you re-enter you 10 year old self. If the story had tried to play this off as him pretending to be 10, this wouldn't be such an issue. Problem is they don't. Anyone that says otherwise is just justifying bad writing. See what I mean about working out how I feel. It seems I have bigger issue with Satoru's character then originally thought.

Despite this glaring issue with a 30 year old not acting 30, his character is likable. Problem is everyone else. Everyone seems so one dimensional. Satoru's mother is probably the next best character, but even she's not very well hashed out. The main antagonist is just weird. It was extreamly obvious who he was from the very beginning and his motives are odd and don't really make any kind of sense. I mean is he a sociopath? If that's the case, why can't he kill Satoru? It seems that they were trying to create a Moriarty type genius criminal mind, and he's looks at Satoru much the same way Moriarty looks at Sherlock. Unfortunately they don't they succeed here in the least. Another big character issue is Airi. It feels like she was supposed to be important to the story but she's completely just ignored. This is extreamly obvious in the very last scene of the show. And this seems like a good time to move on to the story portion.

Story: 

The concept of the story is interesting. It's not wholly original, but it's a fun one and offers pretty much an infinite way of interpretation. It starts out fine with them explaining that Satoru has a unique ability to shift 1-5 min back in time. This happens randomly and appears to be out of his control. He claims in his monologue narration that it happens when something wrong is about to happen. This gives him the opportunity to fix what's out of place. Unfortunately the story doesn't keep it that way. Shortly after discovering his mother murdered, he not only jumps, but he jumps back 18 years. I guess this could make sense if he had some control on his ability and the stress of seeing his mother dead kicked it into overdrive. Unfortunately they never give any explanation for this out place event. He doesn't even dwell on it. He casually thinks it's weird, but that's it. I'm sorry but if for 30 years something happened one way then out of the blue it does something crazy and unexpected, I would be doing a lot more than just causally thinking, "hey this is odd".

So Satoru realizes he's back to just days before some children from his class are murdered. He then makes the decision to try and save these children. The first victim is Kayo. She's a reclusive girl, mainly because her mother is abusing her. She's reluctant to form any kind of attachment to anyone. Eventually Satoru breaks down these barriers. And the story changes from a time traveling or mystery style story (which ever one it was supposed to be isn't clear) to focusing on the relationship between the two. Surprisingly I'm ok with this. The relationship between Satoru and Kayo is easily my favorite part of the whole story. Some, I have seen, have taken issue with the fact that this is a 30 year old man and a 10 year old girl and scream pedophilia. To me, I didn't get a sexual nature out of their relationship so it didn't bother me. It seemed more a deep bond over him helping her out with her abusive mother and protecting her from the serial killer than about sexual attraction.

This next part will finish up the rest of the story quickly. Eventually Satoru fails and Kayo is killed anyways and then he makes a jump back to the present. This is weird because not only did he change curtain events in the past, the only thing had changed was a few names in history. Not very logical. Fast forward past his time running from the police, Satoru seems to will himself back to the past. So does he have control of his ability our not? He keeps acting like he has none, but without some type of control his massive jumps make no sense. But I'm getting sidetrack and most will have stopped reading by now. TL/DR right? Well now we are back in the past and the story shifts yet again back to the Satoru/Kayo relationship. Obviously this relationship is important to the story. I say this because fast forward through an awful ending and this relationship is just thrown out like nothing.

I could nitpick this horrible ending but I won't. I'll just hit the high lights. The killer finds out that Satoru is stopping his actions and proceeds to try and kill Satoru by locking him in a car and driving it into a river. I guess he has a change of heart and saves Satoru. Unfortunately Satoru falls into a coma for 15 years. Where's this ability of his when he needs it. Again they can't make up their minds if it's random or not. He wakes from comma, Kayo had married one of his friends, the killer has been waiting for this day for 15 years. Bla bla bla, rushed ending garbage galore, killer confronts Satoru and then is caught trying to kill Satoru and himself. End credits play trying up lose ends (yah right). The last scene is of him meeting Airi in this time line. To me this makes so little sense. They spend the entire show the importance of one relationship just to ignore it at the end, then they ignore another relationship and then say oh wait it was important at the end. I'm not saying that Satoru and Kayo needed to get married and have love babies or what not, but their relationship was worth more than the garbage throw together ending it got. Just a bad bad ending. It's like "How I Met Your Mother" bad.

Overall:

ive been pretty critical in this review, but that's not to say there wasn't some enjoyment into. There were some good highs and some atrocious lows. It's inconsistent and illogical and thrown together in a rushed horrible ending. All in all, if you can look past that, it has its moments making it worth watching. Just don't expect much. If I had to some it up in one word it would be "disappointing".it had so much potential and they blew it...hard.

5/10 story
8/10 animation
8/10 sound
5/10 characters
6.5/10 overall
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yukiasuna3's avatar
Jun 12, 2016

The main story line is really intriguing and it draws you in from the very first episode. It slowly but surely improves as it goes on. I feel that this is a really good, newly released mystery anime that will stay with you for a long time.

7/10 story
9/10 animation
7/10 sound
6/10 characters
8/10 overall
ViridianDenial's avatar
May 17, 2020

This anime was such a good binge-anime, I'd consider watching it a couple times with others to see their experience.
When it came to understanding the themes that were happening, it had me hooked as an older anime-consumer.
It's not often that for someone who has experienced some form of trauma to find an anime that was sort of theraputic to watch.

The animation was very pleasant on the eyes and the overall show had me hooked. <3
Please give it a watch if you are into mature anime.

8/10 story
7/10 animation
8/10 sound
7/10 characters
8/10 overall
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MexicanPanda's avatar
May 16, 2016

This is really a must-see, the time travel plot was well executed and the music and animation were incredible. The opening is really good too, I recommend watching "What's in an op? - Erased" om youtube. I would be giving this a 10/10, but like most animes.. there has to be something that ruins it. The first 10 episodes were outstanding but when it came to the last few.. it really ruined it. I don't want to spoil it but be prepared to be upset by the awful ending that follows what could've been something truly wonderful. Something I'd like to add is that there wasn't much character development and we didn't see much from Ai, she was really cool and I would have liked to see more. But nonetheless you should really binge this show in 1 night because it's a great show. But I guess getting a PERFECT anime would be too good to be true.

Simon

7/10 story
8/10 animation
9/10 sound
6/10 characters
7/10 overall
xoxrere123's avatar
May 13, 2020

If you see reviews saying how bad it is then they were probably watching something like Magical Warfare. this anime was amazing and will be one of my favourites. I really was surprised loads of times and I loved it! I really recommend this anime. WATCH IT!

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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KailaKin's avatar
Aug 15, 2019

There are definitely issues with Erased, issues that even somebody like me (who tends not to notice plot holes, logical inconsistences, and the like, as I "switch off" while watching) noticed, but regardless, I found Erased to be an enjoyable watch. I binged it, and I think that says it all. 

The first problem is that the last two episodes are the weakest.  The anime would have been stronger, IMO, if the show had ended two episodes earlier. The only problem with that? It'd mean cutting out my favourite part of the anime. But, if you're the kind of person who does notice plot holes or are already fed up with the anime by the end of episode ten, I'd advise pretending the last two don't exist. Even if my favourite part was in those last episodes, they were still exceedingly weak.

The second problem is the realism of some of it. While it is easy to overlook and ignore some parts of it that make no sense, there are certain things that do detract from the realism to a pretty big degree. A lot of this occurs in the last two episodes, but there is plenty sprinkled throughout the series. As somebody that isn't usually bothered by those things there were moments here and there where I was irritated by it. Not enough to impact my overall enjoyment, though. I'm looking at you chocolate bar. 

Thirdly, if you're looking for a mystery then this isn't really it. Things are fairly clear from the outset, and although the anime does try to make it seem as if the factors pointing to a particular person are red herrings, there isn't much doubt as to who the murderer actually is. Plus, the protagonist doesn't really do a lot of sleuthing. Perhaps, appropriate for a child, not so appropriate for an adult, who should be able to critically think things through. A lot can be forgiven, but that is stretched to breaking point.

But, what about the good? I obviously liked it, right?

Well, as a story about friendship, it does a good job. We’ve given scenes that have very little impact except to build up a relationship between characters. It’s able to give us (or me) an emotional connection and how they relate to each other. I’m not saying that this is done perfectly, but I felt like it was something the show did well. Better than either the time travel or the mystery. The bond of Satoru and Kayo was well done, considering how creepy it could have been, and went a long way to changing who Satoru himself really was.

If you disagree, I think that says more about you as a person than it does the anime.

I also liked the relationship between Satoru and his mother, Yuuki (who deserved more screen time), and between kid Satoru and the homeroom teacher. Honestly, the things this anime did right, it really did do right, so it is a shame there was so much that wasn’t very strong. Kayo was great as a character too, and I think they did a wonderful job showing her progression. And this strength helps make up for the other weaknesses – as long as you don’t get het up on genre, that is.

There were also some beautiful scenes in this anime, animation wise. I don’t often notice how good or bad the animation is (unless it is excellent or terrible) but this had one or two shots in it that I really noticed. The problem, I guess is, that the animation also really helps to cement who the bad guy is. Whoops?

7/10 story
8/10 animation
?/10 sound
8/10 characters
7/10 overall
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AWildHampus's avatar
Aug 18, 2018

i really loved this anime!

So many feelings in it, And just wow this is awesome

The story is really good but they could make the ending better,
The Animations were really good no weird movements at all,
I think they could make the sound better but either ways it was really good,
The Characters story/backstory was really good and they were so interesting to follow.

9/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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ganya's avatar
May 25, 2020

An amazing anime with a interesting plot. Even if you aren't into time travel, this anime is sure to get you hooked. Characters are interesting and get good development. There's nothing bad with this anime. The ending is good in my opinion. Overall, it's just a great anime. It might make some of you cry tho haha!

10/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
9/10 characters
9.5/10 overall
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Ebonyslayer's avatar
May 14, 2019

Its been on my backburner for a while now but I finally got to watching Erased. And now there's the question of what I thought about it.

Story- In a nutshell, Erased is about a man named Satoru who lives a normal life and uses his time ability to help people in small ways, until tragedy strikes, and his time travel ability takes him all the way to his childhood. And for the remainder of the series he is focused on finding the child serial killer in his town. I do think the studio for the most part took short cuts with the manga adaption and its probably the reason why Satoru's powers may not get completely explained. Just the fact of not getting a whole story is why I'm not giving a high score to the adaption, and yet I think they try to end it on a decent note.

Animation- For the most part they kept the animation pretty simple, nothing too complex, but its A-1. They for the most part try to do a decent job.

Sound- The soundtracks for the show were pretty awesome, coming in for the most part when it came to the emotional feels, one in particular with Kayo when she's with Satoru and his mom.

Characters- There were some cool things about the characters, but I also believe that there were dumb things as well. I think they made who the killer was a bit too obvious to figure out, partly because of design and also because they kept focusing on one character, not multiple. There's also the fact that Satoru made stupid mistakes in the story. In the anime at the very least, they don't show him as a character who has learned how to use good critical thinking during his investigating. Compared to the children characters in The Promised Neverland, they were raised to be critical thinkers. That's why if you're going to show how a character plans and thinks, there has to be a growth process with Satoru. And then there's the relationship between Satoru and Kayo. He does seem to be a lot mentally mature considering he's a 27 year old in a ten year old body whose fallen in love with a ten year old girl. But I think in the end it all comes down to execution.

Overall- From what I can tell, it seems the anime only succeeds in making me want to read the manga. I think the anime ended on a decent note, but I have this desire to see all of the story. Its not a bad anime adaption, but I think it does make you want more in the end.

7/10 story
8/10 animation
8/10 sound
6.5/10 characters
6.5/10 overall
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sarahpuryear's avatar
Mar 30, 2020

Idk what to say about this show. It was so amazing. It only took me a day to watch it. The plot was so interesting and I loved all the plot twists that the show threw at you. The was such a good show!

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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blitzburns4's avatar
Jan 13, 2018

ERASED Retrospective

Please note: This “review” is for the anime Boku dake ga Inai Machi, which translates to “The Town Without Me” in Japanese- more commonly known in the West by its animated localized title: ERASED. It was created by manga artist Sei Sanbe from 2012 to 2016 and animated by A-1 Pictures in Spring of 2016. It was directed by Tomohiko Ito, who’s previous big directoral work was for Sword Art Online. I binge watched the entire series subbed on Hulu. To be frank, this is more a general retrospective and collection of thoughts/feelings rather than a specific analysis of the series, per se. I just finished the ERASED anime a couple of days ago and rewatched sections of a series with my roommate and discussed it to death with him (thank you for being a listener to my rambles, Roomie) throughout the night. This review is a collection of my final sentiments on my experience with ERASED. Speaking on behalf of ERASED itself, I found the series to be a unique supernatural murder-mystery that can be enjoyed (mostly) it in its entirety. “Enjoyed” is a key word here insofar as the story kept its momentum, sharp characterization, and rules/limitations on the main character(s) and villain. This is not so for the entirety of the series, as I felt that the show stumbled towards the end. Spoilers follow for the sake of analysis and presenting my collected thoughts. 

ERASED starts off with an amazingly intuitive idea of giving an adult nobody named Satoru Fujinuma the opportunity to “jump back” in time to his body when he was in 6th grade and fix the greatest regret of his life: stopping the killing of a classmate named Kayo Hinazuki with whom he had felt a strong association and attraction to. When it is revealed in the first episode that Hinazuki’s death was connected to a serial killer who, by coincidence, stumbles across Satoru in the present time 18 years later and murders his last remaining family member: his mother—the stakes become personal. And while the premise makes for an interesting setup- the series takes on two principle (and supposedly, intertwined) goals: saving Hinazuki from her tragic fate and stopping the serial killer before he destroys the fabric of Satoru’s life, primarily by using his 29-year old mind in both the present and past in an attempt to deduce the killer’s identity and predict/counter his targeted murders. There’s a point in the series that one of those two goals is accomplished: Hinazuki is saved decisively, partially with the help of the past version of his mother, ex-reporter Sachiko Fujinuma (she was a pleasantly-suprising plus to this show) and fellow deductive classmate named Kenya Kobayashi. Hinazuki is saved well before the killer is apprehended. So the story from that point continues and focuses on finally defeating the serial killer. It’s at this point that I felt the series started losing its edge and stumbled.

As to why? 

Well there’s a few reasons. Some more egregious than others. The big transgression I felt that the show had was lacking conviction in any of the ideas it presents that are risky. The handling of the climactic confrontation(s) between Satoru [as a kid and adult] and serial killer Gaku Yashiro fail to maintain any sense of terror or suspense once Hinazuki is removed from the story when she’s saved. I almost feel as if ERASED from that point forward loses a lot of tension, suspense and unpredictability. From that point forward, the show feels like it is just playing-out of a series of pre-ordained events that we, the viewer, can figure well in advance is going to happen. The time travel mechanic’s inconsistent use, purported purpose, and lack of definition lead to some wacky/jarring plot points. For example- towards the end the main character Satoru ends up in an induced coma? What’s the deal with that? But more importantly: Why doesn’t the time skip save him? Lots of why’s here in ERASED, in retrospect. Many of which are interconnected. Why does the “Revival” power work so inconsistently? "Just a few minutes" is how the series introduces viewers to Satoru's "Revival" time traveling powers. But that's before story really kicks into gear. After the first episode that power's rules seem to change. After Episode 1 the power changes to skip years instead of minutes--backwards and forwards. It turns into a spiritual time machine of sorts. Why have such an ambiguous power for Satoru at all? Surely they could have written it in as one-time deal from the start. Why’d it save him at those select moments of danger and failure? [And, by extension, why not others?] It's all just too undefined for my tastes. Steven King had the same issue in his novel 11/22/63; time travel is not quite as easy to understand as, say, maybe Vampires where you can leave audiences hanging about the the details and assumptions of it and its consequences. But at least even Steven King made definite rules that he followed even if he didn't explain a single damned thing about the nature of it. (Why it exists, etc.) ERASED doesn't even give us definite rules.

This next big reason’s a little touchy because the character interactions between Kayo and Satoru are by far the most heartfelt part of this show for me…yet I must be honest with my disappointment: why did the show go to such lengths to develop a romance between Kayo and Satoru just to abandon it? Satoru literally wakes up from his coma in Episode 11 and there's a three minute scene where Kayo reveals she married and has children. Does the show really think its audience is that innocent in this, or that what the creators get to be completely excluded from giving its audiences misguided expectations even if it wasn’t? I would be remiss if I failed to recognize the transgression on the part of the writers and criticize them for this…because this is actually a pretty huge fuck-up. What exactly is the final message that the writers are sending here to their audience with the final outcomes of the hinted romances they depicted? “Good job at seeing emotional moments that weren’t actually there.”? Or “Shame on you for having [such and such] expectation? We never planned to do anything with it.”? Or my favorite: “Aha! Bet you thought we would ever go along with [such and such] societally unacceptable romance. Pervert scum!!”

Humor and roleplaying aside- my best and most objective guess is that they were more trying to play up the tragedy side to Satoru’s quest to become a superhero towards the end of the series, but you get the idea. There was some sort of colossal miscue in this pivotal change in direction; writing that previously pegged audiences on this budding relationship now wanted us to simply accept, as Satoru accepts, this sort of skewed consequence of fate. The entire thing backfires with most audiences, I think, judging by both how I felt, personally, watching it and reading fan posts and commentary online. Although no such overtly offensive messages were flashed across the screen by the show’s creators; they don’t need to. By making the “safe” creative choice to abandon the romance, we had an equivalent situation of the storywriters turning their backs on their audience they themselves drew here with their original creative decision to center the show around the tender relationship between the two characters Satoru Fujinuma and Kayo Hinazuki. It was manga author Kei Sanbe to who made the creative choice to write—and A-1 Picture’s creative choice to portray—the story of an adult from the present reliving his traumatic childhood again in order to save a girl classmate that had left such a huge impression on him that he spent the rest of his life not ever living up to his full potential over the guilt of it. It was additionally their choice to make the two main characters in middle school instead of, say, high school—it’s always a daring move to feature kids in an adult-oriented story. Also their choice was to make Satoru’s main focus of his regretful past Hinazaki instead of, say, his actual friend Himori Sugita. It was their choice to continually remind audiences of this weird situation(s) with poorly timed comedic jabs. Most damning of all- it was their choice, again and again, to directly connect Satoru’s increasingly desperate efforts to save Hinazuki with their increasingly close relationship. Excuse me. Friendship.

All their choices. Not ours.

Not to mention they could have done a number of simple things that makes this entire point a moot one by either better addressing their choice with more screen time, or more intelligently foreshadowing that there was something between that Hinazuki and Himori Sugita that could help audiences explain for themselves the ultimate result. They could have, for example, played up just the emotional turbulence and guilt Hinazuki endured in order to move on from Satoru’s memory, or maybe shown some of the off-screen grief Hinazuki must have felt at the reversed-fates between herself being saved and Satoru becoming the victim. Alternatively, the story could have helped along this conclusion by maybe tweaking Satoru’s fate. For example, why couldn’t he have been flat-out killed when the killer locks him in the car and sinks him in the frozen lake? [Speaking of which I’m fairly curious: how did he survive a sinking car in sub-zero temperatures? I’m pretty sure its hinted the serial killer saved him, but not quickly enough that he wasn’t left in a coma? That whole rationale was, perhaps, the single most unbelievable and disengaging oversight of the show. A serial killer saving his victim? Twice?!?] or have Hinazuki otherwise believe he was killed but in actuality Satoru gets transported back to the future. So he'd have been missing the last 15 years. Something of that nature to make the reality of the events the storywriters more real or legitimate. 

It’s not the principle in itself of developing a romance despite or because its normally taboo to either temper or titillate an audience, mind you. ERASED by and large does neither with this weird situation and its mostly just makes comedic jabs at the nature of it until the final parts of the series. Satoru will belatedly remind himself a few seconds after-the-fact at the end of a scene with Hinazuki that he's 29. While I understand I may not be putting myself in a good corner here with this textual description/defense...I just don’t think anything should ever be off limits when it comes to fiction. What I'm trying to say is that it almost feels like the creators realized too late that the very type of story that they were crafting had bad insinuations that wasn't societally acceptable. Now, granted, there are plenty of ways to look at many of the scenes in the show between Satoru and Hinazuki that I had just taken for granted as romantic. But given we really do have some gross tests of this principle of creative freedom out there with out there with cases like Boku no Pico. Is this really something that had to be that big of a deal on the writers’ part that they couldn’t really ever give it a mature addressing? It almost feels like they changed the result of the series to stonewall the romance from continuing. And them making it a big deal led of it led to the best part of the show being nothing more than a misdirected plot thread that doesn't really amount to anything, which makes it a big deal for us.

Of course, a shit ending doesn't retroactively ruin a good experience. Also of course this could just be a case where A-1 pictures was running out of screentime to resolve the lingering plot with the serial killer in a way they themselves would have liked...or author Kei Sanbe was otherwise predisposed to finish the story and didn't give as much attention to intuitively resolve plot threads as she would have liked. Or maybe this is a case where Sanbe/A-1 just wanted to force the love triangle between Satoru, Airi, and Hinazuki to end in Airi's favor. [Also a questionable choice: Airi is still 17 in present time. Hinazuki, in the meantime, is the same age as Satoru by this point in the story. Not to mention that Airi is only prevelent in around 3 episodes total.] Who knows. My main complaint and point of this entire review, perhaps, is that when the biggest principle attraction of the series was the touching romance between Satoru and Hinazuki- for it to have that anticlimactic result was just a literal backstab to audiences. It's something I was still hung up about even as the show wanted me to pay attention to the serial killer stalking around the hospital, and it's something I'm still hung up about as I write this review. Again, though I figure that the storywriters were just trying to play up the sacrifices Satoru makes, while also wrapping up things with Hinazuki as to continue the story, and also to finally give Hinazuki some sort of happy ending. I can’t say I liked how it played out much at all. The only thing I can say is that I respect their right to make creative decisions to their story so long as it's logical.

Anyways, moving on.

The most daunting thing about writing any ERASED review is that it is a show that has been discussed and debated to death. Obviously, in this review I felt a need on my part to get out and make my personal qualms with this series heard. But this isn’t a new problem, nor are these problems that aren’t addressed elsewhere. This is always a point of self-doubt I’ve had when I made with a number of my reviews ranging from Ergo Proxy to Wolf’s Rain to Madoka Magica. But perhaps this is the greatest thing I fail to see consistently with most editorials is a sort of attempt at objective and honest balance. There’s always an attack, or an agenda, or a defense. I personally am not innocent of pushing agendas, certainly, but my main motivation for writing is coming to terms with my own experiences with all these heartfelt animated stories, or at least understand better when they fail to connect with myself or other audiences. While it is indeed ironic that this series was helmed by Sword Art Online director Tomohiko Ito; ERASED, being a murder-mystery, really makes things easily black or white in terms of audience reaction. For a number of reasons both intrinsic and palatable, you are more-than-likely to either slam it for its failures or praise its success in engaging/exhilarating you. Not to say that there aren’t good objective (if mixed) reviews out there, I’m just saying it’s usually a tendency of either love or hatred that motivates the most in-depth or informative reviews. And similar to something like, say, Sword Art Online- ERASED is a show that can’t help but be polarizing, existing in a liminal space that it finds itself on the cusp of being a critical cornerstone of the genre or, to others, being held up on a pedestal of shame (along the likes of Guilty Crown or, ironically, Sword Art Online) to be forever noted for its major fundamental failures and what not to do in any given genre. I myself think the truth lies somewhere closer to the center: it’s both, depending on what you are taking away from it. (Disappointment, Fulfillment, Exhilaration, etc.)

I do consider it more a “good” thing and something of a privilege having arrived late to the discussion- because though I unfortunately missed the entire conversation as it was happening and while ERASED was in the limelight; (as to achieve fame and adoration for conjuring original and new arguments in my articles! Alas!) I do have tons of great writing material to pour over and educate myself on the plot’s intricacies and formulate even greater critical commentary, gauge the consensus within our community, and become as objective and vindictive in my thoughts/feelings as possible…As I read these other articles at, say, Ani-Tay or Kotaku or even Reddit [BBallHunter] or right here on Anime Planet [Roriconfan made an excellent post expressing his hatred towards ERASED] I really bring into question whether arduously working on a review for this show is even necessary, or what exact points I want to make. After all, why not just rely on them to hang dry or defend ERASED? Why not simply refer out to number of reviews which do a greater job than I could myself pouring over almost every conceivable aspect of the show to better support and define their points? Not that I like admitting I lack the capacity—the intuitive or deductive logic required to create original analysis—or just plain vindication. At least in ERASED’s case I needed to rely on others to discover why I felt so torn having experienced it. My thoughts have finally been laid out in this article. That’s a great thing for me to come to terms with, too, considering I'm having trouble focusing on my Finance work for college which is due in a few hours.

Coming away from ERASED, I do think its fairly safe to say that it is by no means a series that is a paradigm shift for a genre. At best- it’s an enthralling and certainly exhilarating entry to a couple of genres that have already had their groundbreaking and iconic entries: Touching time travel thriller? We’ve already got our Steins Gate, Madoka Magica, and The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, respectively. We’ve also already got our share of iconic psychological thrillers and sadistic serial killers in series ranging from Monster and Death Note to Higurashi When They Cry. The benchmark for ERASED was already laid back in at least 2011. Even the most loving and ardent of fans, I think, would struggle to say that ERASED is—even if really good—anywhere close to the same level of accomplishment, ingenuity, and overall impact of a few of those classics.

If we’re being honest here, I did love ERASED for the majority of the duration that I was watching it, but was left feeling more-than-a-little bitter and disappointed by the show’s end…I would almost daresay that I felt like I was cheated. Almost. But, upon deep reflection, I realize it is because of this love I gained for this show and its characters that I was invariably disappointed and torn and wanted to spend so much time learning its objective flaws and strengths. What feels like days I wondered big questions like Was I just being blind to systemic problems throughout the entire show? This obviously is the “big” question that brings major doubt into my mind. But, rest assured, there were others. Questions like Am I just being in denial with how I feel? Or Can I trust my opinion as objective? Or Am I giving the writers and animators due merit to make decisive and correct creative decisions? Or Was this just an issue coming from the Manga? And finally Am I giving the characters the unconditional support they earned through their ordeals upon which they garnered my sympathy and empathy? All these questions struck a cord with me. I’m smart enough to realize that a show that does this to you invariably deserves credit for having been able to leave such an impression in and of itself; even if it fails to adequately provide answers to them. In some ways--though I feel utterly ridiculous saying this--we create our own answers. I’ll go back and read, say, Roriconfan’s or BBallHunter’s [of Reddit] list of points highlighting what they see as basic and fundamental mistakes ERASED makes, some of which they argue are unforgivable…and I can’t help but feel that, at least on some level, that their answers are absolutely right. That in their harsh criticisms lies the truth. However, the same goes for more positive reviews on Kotaku or Ani-Tay or THEM Anime or any number of quality disseminations. I'll read those positive reviews and think that ERASED was one of the best series of the entire year.

I’m happy and appreciative to have been a part of it. I’m going to see this anime as a worthy and enjoyable, if somewhat derivative, entry to the legacy of iconic shows like those I listed above. And while I do have a lot of reservations about the way things played out- I do not have regrets about having experienced it. Clearly, Satoru and Hinazuki and the cast and the storywriters at A-1 and the author Kei Sanbe are ready to move on. I shall as well.

  • Blitzburns4
7.5/10 story
8.5/10 animation
7.5/10 sound
7/10 characters
7.5/10 overall
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FeralMinds's avatar
Oct 16, 2019

Honestly one of the best anime ive seen in a while, good story, engaging characters, proper suspence and thrills. This is the only anime ive watched that made me want more, it was quite honestly one of the top 10 anime this decade.

10/10 story
8/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
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angeldenny2021's avatar
Sep 21, 2017

This anime was so intriguing, I couldn't stop watching it after the first few minutes! Cliff hangers after every episode, like a good anime should be. Heavily recommended to all, whether you like mystery or not. :)

10/10 story
8/10 animation
7/10 sound
9.5/10 characters
10/10 overall
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EmSycho's avatar
Apr 26, 2020

In shortcase .. Im so glad when i find this anime .. to late but worth. 

10/10 story
9/10 animation
8/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.5/10 overall
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potentplumzz's avatar
Apr 24, 2020

Overall solid series, tells an amazing story in 12, 20 minute episodes! Character development was very well executed as well as the story. There are several moments that make you either want to cry with sadness or happiness. Definitely a recommend to anyone who enjoys that kind of thing. Only critique if you could call it that was that the setting was a bit generic, there was nothing wrong with it per say but I feel a bit more could have been done to make it more unique. 

9/10 story
9/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
9.5/10 overall
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TeamAlex's avatar
Apr 19, 2020

Foreword: Here again we have a prime example of a work that should never have been completed in less than 20 episodes. The reasons for this are distributed in the criteria. And to hint at it. Due to the small number of episodes, there was hardly any time to properly present the genre, elaborate the characters and give the story enough start. It started too suddenly, then the focus came and immediately we were in the final. It could have been done a bit longer here, there would be a risk of messing it up, but the option to end it with only 12 episodes was obviously the wrong one.
However, I do know one thing that I will look at this work again sometime.

Subtext: Erased actually managed to entertain me with these 12 episodes. I have to confess I was skeptical at first because this anime was surrounded by a really huge "hype". After looking at this work within 24 hours, I have to admit that this "hype" is not that bad. However, Erased is not a masterpiece
Since the manga was only recently completed, I do not consider it impossible that the mangaka might / could start a new project. He created an interesting concept and seemed to have finished the story flat and superficial. There were a lot of questions in the middle of the series, but only the minority was answered, the most important questions are still open.

In any case, the strongest point of this work was, without a doubt, the actual plot including its implementation. But I have to praise one point in particular: the "Cliffhanger". It is rare to find an anime / manga that knows how to end a chapter / episode at the peak of the tension curve to shovel the tension for the upcoming episode. If I hadn't watched the anime in one piece, I would probably have gone crazy. Although I was able to look through the story and sort of figure out who the killer is and what the process will be like, there was a well-built tension.

I now go into more detail on the individual criteria.

Genre:


Subtext: By removing the "Romance" genre, the rating was saved because this work had absolutely nothing to do with "Romance". Even if I think Romance would have fit really well into the setting.

[Drama Mystery Psychological His Superpower]

Drama: This was a rather dramatic work, the emotions were conveyed really badly, but drama was present. More under spoilers -
Spoilers! The dramatic feelings were barely there, probably because the plot simply didn't put them in the foreground, but it was all based on somewhat negative dialogues and more or less pure brutality. Which makes you angry rather than sad. Even if you saw the characters crying now and then, the emotions weren't in the air.

The greatest drama elements can still be found in the ending.

Mystery: Was definitely the most pronounced genre here. The plot was made quite mysterious, one had to think about which sequence it would take, which character will play which role and who is behind the serial murders. Even though the actual process was quite clear for me personally, I also had to put myself in the story a bit to better understand the movements and small allusions.

Psychological: I have seen better psychological elements than here. There were some violent characters here from time to time, but the genre was not driven enough. Just because a certain "serial killer" is present, I don't think the genre is automatically represented by this. This work hardly deals with a person's psyche. If I interpret this correctly, "Violence" would do better.

His: This is obviously the right category for classification.

Superpowers: Somehow available behind the scenes.


Story:

The concept was absolutely nothing earth shattering. A topic often used in films and series "The journey through time" in order to undo or prevent something. The topic here has only been slightly modified and shown as if something is pulling the strings in the background.

The sequence of the action is mainly based on undoing the actions of the serial killer in the past in order to change the present, which can already be seen in the description.
However, the character tries to befriend some episodes mainly with Kayo and to spend time with her. No one is looking for the killer or an expected detective game, on the contrary, for some episodes you almost forget that there was something like the killer. The focus was more on the problem that the mother of "Kayo" abused her, rather than being one of the victims of the killer.
Starting from this point, the topic fluctuated really strongly and even changed the priorities from one topic to another. You'd think more episodes were more about social issues than about finding the killer.

Spoiler!
The whole thing with the killer only became the focus at the beginning, towards the middle and again at the end.
Together these were about 6 episodes and thus only half of the work.

But I have to remark again that the implementation was quite pleasant, even if the topic lost strength in focus from time to time, the tension remained and the said "cliff hangers" did an excellent job. The tension and the desire to finish this work certainly remained.

Animation / pictures:


The animations were very pleasant to watch, they were precise, standing and with a lot of detail. Both the color scheme and the environment were very apt. Especially the atmosphere that was implemented well here.

Characters:


This point was as negative as I expected from the beginning. And this is not that bad, I have to confess.

The adaption consisted of 12 episodes, whereas practical
Spoiler!
6
Episodes played in the present and the rest in the past (
Spoiler!
in other words, in the two pasts, since the protagonist once failed
). In other words, there were hardly any opportunities to work on the characters in this time frame, it would have taken at least 24 episodes with enough relaxation room to deal with the characters and deal with them. But the camera ended up fluctuating from one character to the other.

One found among the characters

The protagonist Satoru Fujinuma who, to be honest, was knitted quite simply and gave hardly any traits. Until the end of the anime, you hardly heard anything from him, except that he is a very helpful hand and has not let anyone down. On a positive note, however, I can say that he was not an idiot, he knew how to talk and how to concentrate on something and how to pursue certain goals and set milestones.

Supporting characters:

Among the supporting characters were the classmates from Satoru, especially those with whom he got on well. Among other things, the two most important Kayo and Kenya, which were the most important. The teacher Gaku Yashiro, the mother of the protagonist Sachiko Fujinuma and Airi Katagiri, the employee in the Pizzaria.

They were successful characters, with their own personalities and traits. The classmates were all more the usual children. Except for Kenya and Kayo, both of whom had more brains and a somewhat distributed mindset. Gaku was the good looking, personable and nice teacher who supported his students. Sachiko, played the role of the calm and more or less chilled mother. And Airi was just Airi, the hyperactive person who likes to talk about positive things.


I can't just leave it there without going into one of the most likeable characters.

The serial killer:

Read only at your own spoiler risk.
Spoiler!
The serial killer was none other than the good old teacher personally. Yashiro was not only the teacher of the class, but also the one who killed his own students to feel the emptiness in his heart. His true identity was only revealed in episode 10/11. He was a very personable antagonist.


To be honest, I have suspected this character from the very beginning, with a certain experience you can suspect certain characters from the very beginning. As soon as the first hints and hints appear, that was it. However, I think it was a very clever presentation to show the two killers from two epochs, so that you could neither recognize him by the speaker nor by his appearance.

Music:


I actually found the outro quite nice for the conclusion of an episode, especially from the text as well as the voice. But the intro also had a certain individuality, both in terms of the visual representation and the song and content. Honestly, I think finding a better intro would be really difficult for such a work. The soundtracks were also pretty neat, although you rarely saw them but they were quite good and could be used in the right scenarios whether "cheerful" or "dark".

There was definitely potential, but in the middle part it was very weak and much too much gear towards the end, so that it was hardly possible to go into the individual characters and stayed with the same scheme.

I can definitely recommend it.

6.5/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
6/10 characters
6.5/10 overall
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nightwing2210's avatar
Apr 29, 2016

I dont do spoilers.

The story was amazing and suspenseful and will get you hooked from ep 1. the animation is quality and though they didnt really highlight and make it seem like it was two different year the animation was still lovely. Character devlopment was pretty good and if you didnt know the premise of he story you woud think this is the cutes love story between a boy and a girl. Overal a good anime however after reading the manga they were key areas they missed that would have helped th plot.

GreaT watch still.

8/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
7/10 characters
8/10 overall
LostInAntarctica's avatar
Dec 28, 2016

This show is one of my favorites out there. It is a tear jerker and is really heart warming, however there is really no mystery in the this "mystery" anime. this show shows the killer in the first episode and its obvious who it is. The opening also shows who it is for a split second and is really bad at trying to hide it. The "revivals" also didn't make sense on how it was completely random and they were never explained. The characters are some of my favorite in anime and this show made me cry and laugh. There are many plot holes, but even with these I think it did pretty well.

also I hear the mangas ending is better, so after watching the 12 episodes make sure to check out the manga for a better "closure" at the end.

6/10 story
8/10 animation
8/10 sound
8/10 characters
8/10 overall
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