Oh, man…am I glad I started Aggretsuko late, because now I know there’s a second season coming, and that eases the torment of this show ending way too soon for my liking. That alone should tell you I loved this series. I’d seen in a couple other reviews that it was very melancholy, but that wasn’t my experience with it. I laughed until I hurt during most episodes except for the last and the Christmas Special (Which I’ll also cover in this review.)
Also, I’m sorry, but I don’t think I can avoid spoilers for this one, so if you want to go into the show clean, just stop now.
Also, this is my first exposure to the cast, as I never saw the 100 one-minute episodes that originally set up the story. So any experts who note mistakes in my review, please, keep your snickering to respectable levels.
With that out of the way, Aggretsuko is a Sanrio show for adults. The main character is Retsuko, a red panda who works as an OL (office lady) for a big company. She’s part of the accounting department, and after five years working in the same dead end position, she’s a bundle of raw nerves that seek release through singing death metal. That’s the whole premise in a nutshell, and it’s what drew me in, the curiosity to see where that angle would go. Continue reading
I’ve been away a while now, so I should explain what happened. Last month we changed internet service providers, and due to a number of paperwork and technical problems, we were without internet service for a little over three weeks. We got back online two weeks back, but I didn’t really have anything to review. I’m reading a couple manga series that I have backlogged and can’t do a proper review on them just yet, and the games I’m playing were already reviewed some time back. And so, to give y’all something new to read, I present to you my first anime review.
Parasyte: The Maxim is an adaptation of a manga I’d read a long, long time ago, but I’d only read the first six or seven issues before becoming unemployed and thus incapable of buying the rest. I remembered those first issues quite fondly, so I thought, “Hey, maybe the anime is just as good.” But it’s not just as good. No, it’s actually much better. Being confined to a single season of 24 episodes, Parasyte: The Maxim benefits from compression and trimming of the side stories that were shown in the manga. This story is more tightly focused around Shinichi Izumi and his struggles against the parasite invaders who have taken over human bodies and consume other humans to survive. Shinichi is put in this position when a parasite attacks him, but fails to take over his brain, fusing with his right hand instead. The parasite takes on the name Migi, or “Righty” in the English manga translations.
Because of Migi, the other parasites can sense Shinichi as unique, and given that he knows their secret, they regard him as a threat and attack him. Migi, being an emotionless entity, does not want to kill his own kind, but recognizes that he will die if Shinichi does. So he helps Shinichi fight new threats as they emerge. That’s the starting premise, which blossoms into something far more complex as the series advances. There’s the introduction of a parasite who is more selective in her kills because she desires to blend in with humans better to remain safe, even experimenting with eating human food to reduce the number of humans she needs to feed upon. For this change in perspective, she too is soon regarded as a threat to her kin and is attacked by other parasites. Her story is woven tightly into Shinichi’s, but represents one of the few side stories that is more fully explored, and I have to say, I really appreciated being given glimpses into her development as a character. Continue reading