Posted by psgels on 26 November 2012 with categories: Psycho Pass

I have been waiting for this kind of series for so long. Especially this episode, which just leaves the action for what it is, and instead creates tension through both art and dialogue. This episode was nothing but long dialogues between people about the current case of dismembered schoolgirls in a disturbed Maria-Sama ga Miteru setting.

This is a kind of storytelling style that I really love, but doesn’t happen often. It’s hard to balance because there is so much dialogue, making it hard to add in other stuff, but this episode balanced it out wonderfully in the way that it turned these murders in this weird kind of art, while at the same time exploring what goes through the mind of its creators, from the perspectives of different people.

On top of that, the way in which this case is loosely connected to Kogari’s reasons for becoming an enforcer is quite interesting, especially the backdrop of this series in which his friend was the victim of this deranged artist. Also for this friend to be a complete womanizer that he dfound interesting, rather than some perfect human being.
Rating: 6/8 (Awesome)

13 Responses

  1. TheUltimateReaper says:

    As far as the atmosphere I’m reminded of Death Note. The dialogue is heavy but well sought out. Unlike DN this show has action, mystery and very clear bad guys and good guys. Turning murder into art isn’t necessity new and pretty much rampant around Western storytelling. So I’m not particularly impressed. All and all, Pyscho Pass is great and maturing well. However, I just hope it doesn’t drag out too much. Good dialogue is great but might muck things up if too excessive.

  2. Nyangoro says:

    I’m really in love with this arc.

    Honestly, this is what I was looking for from the very beginning. Prior to this, I really felt like this series lacked a lot of much-needed subtlety and tried a bit too hard to give exposition.

    Here, however, they actually created an interesting villain with an interesting motive that ties into a “flaw” of the Sybil System beyond the predictable “Minority Report” problem that I feared would become the focus.

    Very, very happy about that. And I hope the conclusion to this arc and the future arcs follow this direction.

  3. Andmeuths says:

    It seems that Urobuchi’s ability with dialogue is among the best among anime writers. Well, there’s a reason why attaching his name to an anime would bring out an instant fanbase…

  4. Rena says:

    Can you recommend anything with this type of storytelling? I love this style as well, it’s unlike anything I’ve ever seen.

    • Juno says:

      Urobuchi’s other works have similar things going on in them. Not so much in Madoka, as it was something that required a different method of storytelling to make its unique points, but I’ve seen similar things in Saya no Uta (the main character/Saya) and somewhat Fate/Zero (Ryuunosuke/Caster), at least.
      Saya no Uta is just a visual novel game, and Fate/Zero was adapted into an anime and manga, but I feel like the novel was closest to this sort of storytelling, mainly because of the medium under which it was being told.

    • KaZuHiRo says:

      How about trying One Outs? I dunno, but I feel the same aura/mood coming from both series.

  5. Juno says:

    I just don’t get why people were saying this would be a rip-off of minority report…
    I mean, I can see how people could come to the conclusion without knowing any background of the author, but there’s a huge difference between the subtle issues Minority Report brought up and the kinds of things Urobuchi writes about with all of his works.

    Minority Report made subtle (but big) comments on relying on humans in a system.
    Psycho Pass is making subtle (but big) comments on our own de-humanizing by using this generally “perfect” system. It’s not the system that’s flawed. It does its job. But by doing its job, it picks away at the things we value as humans. Why would we let this kind of thing exist? Because we’re so scared of losing our humanity, we label other humans, capable of the same things we are, as “criminals” to keep our own consciousness safe. Think of it as developing a bad guy so that the audience can actually empathize with him, but backwards. The audience can empathize with the characters like them, but then those characters are dragged into things until the effects on them either change them, or how those people are perceived, so that they are labeled as bad guys.

    They’re similar ideas, but the focus of what they intend to do is completely different. You can see the SAME exact kind of concepts present in Phantom of Inferno (can’t spoil), Saya no Uta (Fuminori and his best friend), and even Fate/Zero (Kiritsugu, and in another way, Kirei). Urobuchi has talked directly about this theme, so that’s why I feel confident about his intent. Anything else he adds to this series, however, remains to be seen. It just seems like he’s exploring different ways of portraying similar ideas.

    • TheUltimateReaper says:

      I don’t even see the freaking relation. If anything this sort of sci fi were several classic premises set up in Bakuman when they were trying to come up with their first manga. Very much similar in idea and atmosphere, but a bit less extravagant. I have to disagree with most too, the only thing that impresses me about Pyscho Pass is it’s story telling style I find similar to western works.

  6. HunterWulf says:

    Damn impressive episode, the creepiness factor is as high as ever but also the true depth of the story is starting to show .. Sybil -as many have guessed- is far from the perfect system it was shown to be, but i’m sure no one expected the negatives of Sybil system removing stress from people’s life could be as extreme as eventually turning people into vegetable-like creatures.

    Kogami again shows more of his fighting skills and “assets” (and Tsunemori was happy to oblige), i’m really impressed but Kogami’s acceptance of his failure and focusing on what’s important (solving the case that got his friend and enforcer killed), he is indeed a very interesting character, and his superb physical strength will surely come in handy when faced with people who don’t trigger Dominators (i doubt Shogo has a high psycho-pass), and if i remember correctly he showed of some excellent fighting skills in the 1st episode prologue scene when he fought that masked soldier (i think that was a flash-forward to events that will happen in the future .. since he technically haven’t met Shogo in the flesh till now).

    Then we have the crazy Rikako, to say she creeps the hell out of me is an understatement .. WTH seriously is wrong with her, i can understand what her father was doing even if i’m not really into that type of art .. i do find a guilty pleasure in viewing it, a sort of catharsis (which i think what her father was aiming for), but his daughter really is 100 times far more creepy than her father’s drawings .. i can’t even begin to imagine what goes into her mind when she does what she does (to her school mates of all people) .. phew .. somehow i’m glad i can’t imagine that.

    Expanding upon Rikako’s work it reminds me of the movie House of Wax (which had extremely disturbing unsettling scenes (rather than just using jump scares like most other horror movies) this movie really gets under your skin, the whole idea of being waxed alive and turned into living art is as disturbing as much as what Rikako is doing here in PP, i wonder i this whole “waxing people alive” thing was based on a true criminal like the Texas chainsaw massacre, that would up the creepiness factor of the movie ten folds.

    Also, for people who would like to see someone like Rikako’s father in real-life .. someone who is very talented but crosses the line with his art in terms of how disturbing it is … try Hiroaki Samura who made the “Blade of the Immortal” manga, his art books (like “Brute Love”) can be very VERY disturbing on so many levels, but becasue of his drawing talent, impressive style and the catharsis effect of the shock factor his drawings cause it can also be a guilty pleasure .. a very guilt one that is .. sometimes i wonder what the heck was he thinking while drawing this .. then again .. i surely don’t want to know (he is a perfect example of the disconnect between the actual artist and the image his works portrays .. if you see him or hear about him is a pretty normal person with very excellent drawing skills .. look at his disturbing art .. and you get all sorts of ideas about his sanity and imagine he would be some sort of homicidal criminal or lunatic XD).

    The conversation between Shogo and that old guy with eyes-wide-open (for some reason he creeps me out, i think he is either blind or not-human at all .. hint hint .. see the holograph covered robot in the Kogami fight), the way Shogo explained why he is doing what he is doing is very interesting and useful in making him a deep and engrossing villain not just some random evil guy no.99 … i totally agree with his message (showing the people how the Sybil system isn’t as perfect as it was made to be) but i’m totally against his brutal murderous methods, there are other ways to create shock factor and “shake the society” other than giving your resources over to homicidal maniacs like Rikako.

  7. Houlgrave says:

    From what I understand, Urobuchi is heavily influenced in some respects by guys like H.P. Lovecraft and Clark Ashton Smith as far as a lot of his themes and ideas are concerned. He probably reads his own fair shake of noir, thrillers, etc. too.

    I’d bet anyone here a million bucks that he’s a huge fan of Kentaro Miura (the man behind Berserk) as well.

  8. Entrav says:

    Loving the dialogue and the more profound ideas that this show throws at you. The beginning with Rikako can already be talked about for a long time.

  9. MagnAvaloN says:

    Things have been starting to piece themselves together; just like what I was hoping, the cases encountered before were actually tied with a single red string, connecting them with an actually bigger threat. The flow of the conversation also makes the entire show not boring, despite the huge amount of talk involved. I believe Urobuchi Gen will once more exceed my expectation, so I guess I’ll sit back and wait for what will happen next.

  10. Arno says:

    I didn’t like this one as much as the other episodes.

    First the gloomy part was just a continuation of the previous episode, not a revelation or surprise.

    Then I would have preferred the top criminal to manipulate the “lesser” criminals separately. Letting them meet and talk to each other is a bit of a weak strategy imho.

    Then I hope the father theme will lead to something. I would have preferred the girls to be a weirdo on her own. Not a daddy’s girl.

    Also I assume that by the way the detective’s friend was murdered, the culprit was the father ? Manipulated too ? Why not spend the resources on another “lesser” criminal with a different and interesting type of killing ?

    And last, by the rate girls are disappearing from that school, it’s a wonder that the survivors have not all run away by now, and the artsy girl is not discovered.

    A complete lab with tons of chemicals, completely unknown in the basement of a school ? Mmmhh yeah, maybe. Need to fire the janitors probably…

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  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:48 AM)
    Ashura was an excellent example of how to through anime illicit and emotional response in an honest, non-melodramatic way.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:46 AM)
    @Bam: I’d be more than happy to take a look at some of those shorts anytime.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:44 AM)
    @Emma: there’s a lot of European animators that got active in the last 10 years or so that are really reinvigorating their animation scene, and every now and then I get introduced to some fabulous shorts.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:40 AM)
    @Emma: no I don’t really mind gory ‘for the fuck of it’ violence, I even like it in some grindhouse type of works, but I just don’t think it’s always effective as a shock factor. Live-action is the most sympathetic for obvious reasons, but there are animated works that do elicit a deep response. Probably because of circumstances but also the details of the in-between animation, which can induce certain feelings of disgust.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:39 AM)
    *here and there
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:35 AM)
    @Bam: I really wish there was more arthouse anime now to give some kind of a balance to everything thats out these days.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:33 AM)
    Now I like my exploitation every so often, but yes Bam I really do wish that adult and mature storytelling could be better associated with truly, more pure mature themes.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:25 AM)
    I get choked up over Bergmans cries and whisper and Autumn sonata, I look back on a work by Key and Jun Maeda and wonder, think of how silly it looks to me now.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:24 AM)
    I also find it easier to get an emotional response from a honest drama, live action film, largely due to the real people doing the acting. Sometimes you get an actor whose just that good too…
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:22 AM)
    I’ve gotten my odd emotional reaction here from anime and manga but a lot of the time it feels like the jump scare in a generic horror movie, I got shocked but I felt minipulated afterwards it wasn’t genuine, the same goes for some anime/manga drama when it takes a melodramatic turn instead of a bleak, honest one.

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