Posted by psgels on 15 March 2007 with categories: Anime Reviews

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Don’t let the title fool you. It may be cheesy, but there’s a good reason for the show to be named like this. Sci-fi Harry is a mystery-drama, focusing at a psychic named Harry. He’s an incredible social outcast, unable to talk even normally in front of people, who discovers that he’s got huge psychic powers. Through pressure of one of his few friends, he ends up in his own tv-show, called “Sci-Fi Harry” because people are so enthusiastic about him. The thing is, however, that he doesn’t know how to control his powers, which causes quite an incident. Ever since then, different people try to obtain his powers.

First, let me say that this anime features some great moments. It isn’t afraid to show some disturbing scenes (like people with their necks all twisted around), and Harry works as a great main character, due to his constant worries and inabilities. To add to this, Sci-Fi Harry comes with a multi-layered plot, where nearly every episode reveals a bit about a huge complot which is going on. Lots of storylines happen at the same time, ranging from decent to excellent.

A huge theme in the anime is betrayal. Nearly everyone who runs into Harry tries to manipulate him. Because he’s such a weak character, this actually succeeds most of the times. In addition to that, the other members of the rich side-cast also all have one or more instances where they betray, and are betrayed themselves. Especially Mother and Chinori turned into awesome characters because of this.

I liked the fact how this anime follows so many different storylines, but there lies also the problem. Managing all these different storylines which split up and get combined frequently is extremely difficult, and in the end, the creators of Sci-Fi Harry didn’t manage to do this perfectly. Because of this, some of the storylines are more interesting than others, and it’s annoying to see the more interesting ones get interrupted by the less interesting ones. John, an interesting main character in the beginning also gets condemned to the role of a mere unimportant side-character after the first half of the anime, which was a pity, actually.

The fact also remains that this anime took a bit more on its plate than it could take. Especially the final two or three episodes lose a bit of steam when compared to their predecessors, and yet they continue to introduce more plot-elements which could have been easily omitted. Because of this, the ending left a bit too many questions unanswered, and some answers that were given weren’t really satisfying. The identity of “Accuser” just didn’t fit right, and we never know who keeps sending the text-messages through the computer. The final episode itself also was a bit disappointing. Not because it was rushed, but it lacked a decent aftermath. Something very interesting happens at the end of the episode, and I would so have loved to see how people reacted to this, but instead the anime ends and left me with a bad taste in my mouth.

Still, despite this, I really enjoyed this anime. If you like dark mystery-stories, then this is definitely an anime that you should check out. Just be aware that Harry’s art style may be a bit annoying at times, but I think that that was what the creators had in mind. He really looks like a worthless person. And Chinori looked too scary at times.

8 Responses

  1. Nintendud says:

    I believe Fatman was the one who sent the text messages to the computer. Remember his conversation with John on the phone? I’m pretty sure that he basically admitted that he helped him before with those messages, which is the entire reason John decides to believe him (twice, even).

    And, yeah, the ending confused me a bit.

  2. Stiopa says:

    I totally agree with You – there should be at least one additional episode to show the result of their “last action”. The whole “Accuser” storyline is totally incoherent – Fatman’s explanation is just absurd (why would Harry want to make such a massacre). One thing I wanted to see is how hary copes with the implications of his actions on a moral plane.

  3. Confusd says:

    Well…I am still confused about one thing.. who the hell was that person in the last scene?

    Plus, the anime was very interesting in many parts…

  4. psgels psgels says:

    That was basically Harry and the other girl fused together. Hence why the ending felt so sudden.

  5. Nalyd says:

    (SPOILER!!!!!!!)

    I liked the anime a lot, but so many things about it just made me crack up about how unrealistically silly it was! I’m not talking about the psychic stuff, cause obviously it’ll have stuff like that being that it’s a Sci-Fi work, but more on the terms of reactions. The most hilarious example was the end with the military!!! DID YOU SEE ALL OF THOSE TANKS!? FIGHTER PLANES!?! Lol and the stupidity of the military itself. For one, not only would that have been an operation worth hundreds of millions of dollars, but also…. What kinda overkill is that? That was a force worthy of invading a country! A terrorist HQ would be dealt with with something more close to a team of special forces rather than an army of tanks rolling down the hill firing a million shots at a building and then air strikes called on it… (Which even after that I don’t understand how anyone in the building survived or how any part of the building was still standing)…… But after that they sent like 20 more tanks to take out the little cottage over the hill!!! AND EVEN AT THAT POINT! The guy in the tank yelled that the little kid sitting in the smoke was a target!? are they robots? Wouldn’t anyone stop with some common sense (or morals) and say “Hey, let’s capture the unarmed boy sitting there instead of blowing him away with a tank!”. I don’t know about anyone else, but I took the entire anime seriously as a well thought out show until the last few episodes turned into a joke! It definitely didn’t feel rushed, but it LOOKED rushed!

  6. Third Eye says:

    I agree with the rushed ending; I got the impression the series had to have originally something like the canonical 26 eps, but then, midway, they decided to cut it down, leaving some plot thread as it was…

    A shame it never got a sequel, it could have been a valid alternative to the psychological horror/thriller à la Higurashi…

  7. Frost says:

    This anime is one of the reasons I love this blog… This is a true hidden gem right here, completely unknown/underrated and yet one of the best mystery/thriller series out there

    I marathoned the whole thing today from day to night and loved it

  8. Ros says:

    Theres to many problems with that anime…to many questions left unanswered. And the whole anime is about a kid having confidence issues or going through puberty. If you watch this all episoded are like that 1-20 I’m worthless, I’m worthless, I’m worthless each and every episode…and the last episode is even more “worthless”. Finally u expect some questions to be answered in last episode…something more to the point to happen, but nothing happens.

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  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 08:38 AM)
    Jesus I never expected that doing a myanimelist/letterboxd account thing would be so hard. I’ve seen a scarily higher amount than I thought, its insanely hard to remember everything to add.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 06:17 AM)
    It seems then that the future of the franchise’s anime adaptations rests a bit on Schwarzesmarken’s success, which looking at the buzz doesn’t seem favourable at all. I doubt it can regain the lost audiences.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 06:14 AM)
    That would suggest that the author(s) had the foresight of including seemingly useless stuff that will come into play later. That’d be impressive if they did, as these kinda series are make-it-as-you-go.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 01:59 AM)
    It’s difficult to put into words but essentially while the first game isn’t good, it does work as a tool for introducing and endearing you to the characters. Then Unlimited sets down the rules of the new world. And finally alternative proceeds to kick your ass into next Tuesday.
    That’s sort of why I don’t think it would have the same effect if it was an anime. VNs allow you to get a more personal connection with the characters.
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Feb 6. 2016 01:55 AM)
    It’s not quite the same. It’s more like there are things in extra which seem insignificant but turn out to play an important role later. It wouldn’t really work the same if you did it in reverse order. Character history is a bit different too as each game is essentially an alternate universe. The character histories in extra are different from those in alternative.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:38 PM)
    And also remember how Darker Than Black had a big jump between the main series and Gemini of the Meteor. They later made a 4 episode OVA that covered the gap, and although you knew the outcome it was still entertaining; or at least more than the Gemini one. There’s merit to non-linear chronology and storytelling, but it is usually very hard to pull. The audience is intrigued by secrets that can later be uncovered, although in anime the pay-off is not always substantial.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:32 PM)
    I don’t know, the audience usually only needs very limited information to figure out dynamics and histories between the characters.
  • AidanAK47
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:27 PM)
    A 13 episode series would work for the second title unlimited. But Alternative is a pretty long visual novel. You need at least two cours to give it justice. Making extra an OVA could work but you do need it for alternative. But it’s not an optional part of the trilogy. It needs to be read first, so that events later have a greater impact. Personally I am not even sure Muv Luv can even work in another medium.
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:12 PM)
    That might compress things, but I think a good screen-writer can fit pretty much any VN in 12-14 episodes (covering just the main route).
  • Bam
    (Friday, Feb 5. 2016 11:07 PM)
    @Aidan: then the best solution would’ve been to make a two cour season covering the 2nd and the 3rd book. Have the cours air two anime seasons apart, and in the middle have an offshoot short OVA that covers the 1st book, but has a more harem comedy feel to it. Think Full Metal Panic and Fumuffu.

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