Story by Chiaki J. Konaka
Directed by Hiroshi Hamasaki
- Clean opening
Dindrane’s Anime Warnings:
- Murder death kill
- Antiheroes and villains galore
- Confusion and complexity
Released by: Geneon
Rating: 16+ (firm)
My Advice: Go. Get in the car. Drive. Buy it.
[ad#longpost]Texhnolyze revolves around an experimental metropolis called Lukuss, deep underground where normal law does not reach. Lukuss is ruled by a collection of mafia-like gangs who trade in illegal cybernetic limbs and a metallic alloy called “raffia,” which is necessary to the texhnolyze process. Exploitation and street politics are the rule of the day in Lukuss, and the masters of manipulation are the ones who expect to come out on top.
The characters put in place in Volume 1 are still unclear about the truth of their motivations. In this volume, we watch Yoshii wander the city, apparently planting various seeds, but what fruit will these seeds grow? Onishi, the leader of a powerful gang has an important role to play as well, but as he gears up to fight with the other gangs, his hands are full. His doctor wants him to find Ichise, the loner who has an important role to play in the death of Lukuss, but does not know what his role really is, what could be special about him, or whose side he’s really on. He’s still struggling to control his new texhnolyzed vision, arm, and leg. We still don’t know how Ran sees the future or what future she sees, but we know it won’t be pretty. Through the engine of Shinji, we learn a bit more about what texhnolyzed limbs and bits really are and what all they can do, but only enough to whet our appetite to know more.
The visual quality of the show is astonishingâ€”attractive, but at the same time appropriately dark and gritty. The quality of the digitalization is flawless, with regard to both sound and visuals. Not only is the sound nicely directed–vocals balanced perfectly with sound effects, music, and the all-important silence–but the voice acting itself is very nicely done.
The features list is rather spare, which is too bad, given how rabid a fan base a show like this tends to engender. We get a clean opening, which is a treat for fans of the show’s outstanding artwork, and a collection of dub outtakes, which are always funny. I’m not sure why more DVD producers don’t put outtakes on the discs, as they are a free source of entertainment and bonuses for buyers of the discs. Use that wasted tape, boys! We want to hear the failures!
In short, if you enjoy psychological drama, mystery, character-intensive stories, science fiction, or mob movies, then you should love Texhnolyze. The combination of understated action, characterization, art, and quality storytelling is impossible to ignore or resist. Fans of the creators other shows, such as serial experiments lain and Haibane Renmei, will find this story in a similar vein. If you want to know the entire story before it happens you might be frustrated by this show, as it keeps you guessing and wondering what’s going to happen next, but if you don’t want to know the ending before you’ve even begun, you will enjoy the unfolding of this one. Your attention to detail and action will be richly rewarded.