notoriousj0e's avatar


  • Brooklyn, (Slums of Shaolin)
  • Joined Mar 7, 2016
  • 24 / M


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

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