STEINS;GATE at a Glance

BEHOLD CORN

So, the first episode had me almost catatonic, Hanato Kobato apparently escaped the CLAMPverse, and the Japanese continue their unnecessary usage of the semi-colon in the titles of visual novels and their animated adaptations.

Alrighty.

But what really got me about all of this?

The damn thing’s weird hang-up about food.

We’ve got strangely transformed bananas:

Which Kobato Mayuri apparently ate.

Then there are the prophetic omelettes of doom:

And the aforementioned (aforedisplayed?) corn. Of course, maybe I’m just suspicious of corn, which, all things considered, doesn’t seem all that unreasonable of me.

Anyway… where was I?

Oh; STEINS;GATE (see? that’s proper usage of a semi-colon).

Well, like I said, the first episode had me fairly catatonic, and also a bit incredulous, as I had heard good things about it. But it just didn’t really capture my imagination at all, for whatever reason. Maybe this man is crazy? Eh, who cares? The paranoid atmosphere just wasn’t coming across to me, and that undermined the entire rest of the effort. If I felt a lurking sense of claustrophobia to the proceedings, it would grant Okabe’s situation more weight. As it was, I just… didn’t care.

Thankfully, the second episode, if it didn’t make me feel any more of a sense of suspense, did endear me a bit to our dear mad scientist. And while I still don’t really care nor feel curious about whether he is actually going insane or not, his bizarreness is enough to at least grant some small bit of affection for him as a character. He’s weird. It’s hard to not start feeling some interest in him given that, even if I care not a whit about the “mystery” inherent in the core narrative. HE’S WEIRD.

Of course, this doesn’t really bode terribly well for the ability of the show to bear up over the long-run. Yes, Okabe may be enough for me to watch for now, but can he really sustain my interest over the course of twenty-four episodes if I don’t care about the storyline itself?

And then there’s that whole nasty harem smell to it all, what with the plethora of females who thus far fit fairly neatly into several moe molds. Childish girl? Check. Childish girl who says ‘nyan’ incessantly? Check. Shy girl? Check (and her name is Moeka?! are you serious?!). Energetic girl? Check. Trap? Check. (Yes, being a trap means the character in question is a boy, not a girl… but would it really change anything if Ruka were actually a girl? Other than that titillation you’re getting from she actually being a he?)

Kurisu Makise appears to be the only exception to this point, although the jury is out considering we’re only two episodes in. And $5 says there’s a lot more to Mayuri than we are being lead to believe at this juncture.

Anyway, for the one thing I can say without reservation that I enjoyed was the OP. The music isn’t really hyper amazing or anything, but the animation is very eye-catching. Ok, so I guess I was lying about the “without reservation”, although I’ll note that I didn’t dislike the music. I just didn’t love it, either.

In other news, Hyouge Mono still hasn’t been subbed by anyone. Was this licensed and I was just snorting coke that day and didn’t notice?

…oh, wait; when has THAT ever stopped anyone? Excuse my foolishness. Nietzsche was just right, I suppose. It took over a year for Mouryou no Hako to get fully subbed, so I should probably expect something similar for Hyouge Mono.

So… yeah… STEINS;GATE. Still nothing lighting me on fire this season. But, hey, look! There’s a trap! ご愁傷さま、放浪息子。

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13 Responses to STEINS;GATE at a Glance

  1. glothelegend says:

    IT’S NOT DIFFERENT AT ALL!!! IS IT STEVE!!!???

    • adaywithoutme says:

      I have this bizarre urge to respond to this comment merely by saying something about “Adam”…

  2. VucubCaquix says:

    Those bananas, I’m pretty sure are a shout out to an indie movie about time travel called Primer.

    I’d explain, but I’m sleepy, plus spoilers. plus it’s kind of complicated.

    watch primer

  3. kadian1364 says:

    Yes! Hanato Kobato is exactly who that girl reminded me of.

    The story doesn’t click with me, and the reliance on boring harem archetypes doesn’t inspire confidence in me that this isn’t going to be just a poorly written mystery hidden under a pastiche of popular anime tropes. I don’t want to sound like I’m condemning a series 2 episodes in, but I think I’m going to wait ’til SteinsGate’s completion to see if its worth it.

    • kadian1364 says:

      Damn mistyped my email.

    • adaywithoutme says:

      I’ll watch through to episode five unless it really goes off the rails prior to that. I haven’t been hyper-inspired by any of the shows this season, so I certainly have the luxury of time at the moment to spare, and I’m only planning to follow a few more episodes of HanaIro at the moment.

      I like Kobato more than Mayuri thus far.

  4. Janette says:

    At least Kobato was capable of speaking in first person…gah.

    • adaywithoutme says:

      And had a good excuse for her bubble-headed moments. Well… at least in the manga she did.

  5. Nazarielle says:

    And $5 says there’s a lot more to Mayuri than we are being lead to believe at this juncture.

    See, I thought that too! She’s just too cute to be hanging out with a schizophrenic scientist and his otaku buddy. I’m half hoping that she’s going to be some evil mastermind behind the whole plot of the story, so I can hear her going all evil. Cute characters turning evil is so awesome :3
    I’m with you on not liking the mad scientist thing though. It feels to me like they’re just using it to obfuscate the story and make things intentionally impossible to figure out. It’s sometimes fun when you have to wonder “was that real, or just his delusions?” but not when it goes crazy like this, and not from the very start.

    • adaywithoutme says:

      I don’t need her to be evil, exactly; I just would be quite pleased if she is controlling a lot of what is going on. At the very least, I think she knows more and is sharper than she is letting on.

      I don’t mind the personality quirks aspect of the mad scientist, its the actual “insane” stuff I find dull and potentially disastrous. It just feels kind of tossed in at this point, not like its connected in with the larger framework exactly… or, rather, it feels like its being unclear simply for the sake of being unclear, not for any other reason.

  6. inushinde says:

    Okabe’s delusions make him the most interesting character of the season so far, in my humble opinion. He tries desperately to labor under his thoughts to truly distinguish himself as a mad scientist, which makes it a little more disturbing when he has a normal response to the continuous strange goings on that just seem to escalate.

    It’s too early to judge the story, though I do find it entertaining (Especially the Omelette of Doom). I can only hope that it continues to escalate without being too brisk about it.

  7. Caddy C says:

    I got the impression from the first episode that they are trying to cash in on the success of Eden of the East. I just watched one episode, though. The main character was likable enough, but like you, I just didn’t really care enough about his delusions to really get into the (supposed) meat of the story.

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