I pretty much like this show so far, but I’m worried. I just discovered that Amazon.co.jp only lists six DVDs, which total at around 47 minutes each, or twelve episodes combined. The pacing of this episode also very much hinted at that there are only going to be 12 episodes. I’m very, very worried right now.
Now suppose that I’m right: then we’ve just passed one third of this series. Now, what have we accomplished so far? The story itself is still getting introduced: we know that something in the town is screwed up, the residents are under a threat that manifests in some sort of disease and some sort of strangely dressed people who kill people who go out of control. One reporter is out there, trying to figure out what’s going on and the lead character is sort-of the innocent bystander. Fair enough.
But how about the character. Four episodes equals about an hour and a half. What have we learned about the lead character? Well, he’s… polite and likes his sister and his balls haven’t dropped yet. His sister? She’s disabled but wants to be independant. The lead female: well, she likes the lead character and tries to cover up for her pedo-brother. The brother? He’s a pedophile who can’t control his urges due to his disease and therefore is likely to be killed off next. That’s nice and all, but we’ve passed FOUR EPISODES already! For 12 episodes, that’s way too little. Every single character has not gotten beyond its one-line description. We still haven’t got to know these people, and instead the creators are too focused on the mystery and horror. Take Sora no Oto as a counterexample: it started out a bit more stereotypical than this series, but for the past number of episodes it has put a lot of attention in fleshing out its characters so that we could get to know them. The characters in Ookami Kakushi are just… shallow.
So yeah: my big fear is about to come true: at this point, Ookami Kakushi is compelling: the way that the climaxes are delivered is gripping and captivating… but those characters… There is no way that they’re going to get enough depth within only 12 episodes and the creators just spent too much time on the mystery, and too little on the rest. And that’s the thing with this director: he’s good in technical terms. But his balance, pacing and ability to look at the bigger picture is terrible.
Rating: * (Good)