Posted on 1 December 2007 with categories: Anime Reviews, Dennou Coil


Fans of the fifteenth episode of Rahxephon can rejoice: its director, Mitsuo Iso has embarked on a new project called Dennou Coil. Having done the animation for major Ghibli-movies such as Porco Rosso, Ocean Waves and Only Yesterday as well, this guy had the potential to create a masterpiece. Thankfully, he actually pulled it off, and many consider this series as one of the best of the entire year.

The thing that’ll probably immediately catch your attention when you start to watch this series is the immense amount of creativity that’s put into the series. It takes place in about twenty years, where a cyber-world exists that people can only see if they’re wearing special glasses already is something you don’t think of quite easily, but Mitsuo Iso created a world that consists out of much, much more than just that. The first half of the series carefully builds this up, and makes sure that the viewer has been accustomed to the many sides of the setting, only for this series to really get fired off with the second half, and the final quarter of the series has some incredibly emotionally charged climaxes.

To make this even better, Dennou Coil has amazing production-values, second to only Seirei no Moribito. What you usually see with series is how their first few episodes have amazing animation, only to switch to a lazier animation-style after a few episodes, but Dennou Coil is different. The animation is of a consistent high quality, and there are no signs of outsourcing at all. The character-designs may look simple, but the animation and integration with CG make them look beautiful.

The characters may not be among the best points of this series, but they do work effectively when they have to, due to the careful building-up of the storyline. One point of critique would be that most of the side-characters could have gotten more development. Daiichi, Denpa, Fumie and Kyoko are wonderful characters, but if feels like they weren’t used to their full potential, and their roles became smaller and smaller as the series went on.

One thing that irked me, but will probably have little effect to those who plan to marathon the series is the overabundance of recap-episodes. In total, there’ve been three of them for a 28-episode series. The final episode could also have been a bit less rushed. Finally, there are three episodes in the middle of the series (11, 12 and 13), which I guess were meant to flesh out the world of Dennou Coil a bit, and they’re excellent standalone episodes, but they really feel out of place with the rest of the series, and only throw in more potential that unfortunately had to be ignored in the end.

Apart from this, though, we’ve got ourselves a masterpiece here. It’s one of the highlights of the year, and apart from Kaze no Shoujo Emily, it’s the most consistently good series of 2007 for me. It’s anime like these that show that even stories focused at children can be awesome nonetheless.

Posted on with categories: Dennou Coil


Ah, thank god. For a minute, I thought that the ending for Dennou Coil would end up rushed, but thankfully the series gets closed with one final powerful climax that nicely finished the series. Obviously, the ending itself doesn’t match up to some of the other series of the spring-season: Bokura no, El Cazador, Seirei no Moribito, Kaze no Shoujo Emily and Ooedo Rocket all wrapped up their stories better than Denou Coil did in this episode, but I can’t complain, as it could have turned out a lot worse.

And so, we finally find out what really happened in Yasako’s flashback. Obviously, if you haven’t seen the episode, CLOSE YOUR WINDOW. Yasako ended up in the coil-domain thanks to Densuke, right after the accident with Nobuhiko and Isako occurred. She than ran into Nobuhiko at the shrine, and the two of them had fun for a bit. Then Nobuhiko realized that the coil-domain was starting to collapse, so he told Yasako to run away fast, while he himself got sucked into the void.

Afterwards, Yasako managed to escape the black void, and met the Null. This guy turned out to be indeed Yasako’s grandfather. The two of them recognized each other quickly after Yasako’s memory went blank, so the two of them managed to say one final goodbye. The reason Yasako’s grandfather was there was because he was trying to save Isako. Nobuhiko lost his body in the accident, though Isako’s body remained, and it was Yasako’s grandfather who managed to bring it back in the end.

There were quite a few forced scenes in this episode – Nobuhiko suddenly got eyes, and there’s no real reason given for all the revelations. But one thing that went really well, apart from the climax itself, is the emphasis on one of the major themes of this series: saying goodbye to the deceased: Yasako got to say her final goodbye with her grandfather, Isako got to see her brother one final time, Densuke remains gone, but he appears in front of Yasako and Kyoko one final time, when they’ve grown up. This is really why it’s a children’s series in the end: it’s meant to show children who have lost something important to keep remembering this person, but live on at the same time.

And so we’ve come at the end of the major gems of the spring-season. It’s really been an awesome ride, and also a really consistent series.

Posted on 25 November 2007 with categories: Dennou Coil


Haha! That was some major plot-twist at the end of the episode! I’m not going to say what it is, though. I’ll leave that up to the next and final episode of this series. There’s just so much potential for it!

In any case, Mayumi turned out to be a small character in the end, whose purpose was to show Yasako where she had to go to find the other side. Mayumi just still hates Yasako, because Yasako basically did nothing to stop rumours about her and Michiko-san from spreading, while she had enough chances to do so. It’s like Mayumi said, Yasako tries to be nice to everyone, but when it really matters, she won’t do anything. That’s why Mayumi felt betrayed, and their fight began.

The reason Haraken was on the move in the previous episode was not because he still longed for Kanna. Instead, he somehow found out that Yasako was trying to get to the other side, and wanted to stop her. Tamako catches him easily enough, though they both end up collaborating in trying to get Yasako back. They’re too late, though, and end up sending a Sacchi to the other side. This Sacchi has a few modifications, though: it can fly!

(Thank god for wao’s summaries) And we finally know why Nekome does what he does: his case is quite similar to that of Takano’s in Higurashi: his father was a researcher as well, and when he finally discovered something major (I think he was the one who originally developed the Imago-function), this was taken away from him by Megamas. So he teamed up with Michiko-san to cause some kind of major scandal for Megamass, by making Michiko cause every kid with Imago to faint… so I guess that that means that the real reason why he allowed Isako to try and get her body back was for Michiko to take over Isako’s body. But still, did he have to go for such a complex way? Couldn’t he just have lured people inside the keyholes and make the v2.0s destroy them? That would have caused a scandal for Megamass as well, wouldn’t it?

I also wonder… where did Michiko originally come from? Did she just appear out of nowhere, or is she like the humanoid illegals, who in the end turned out to be products of Yasako’s grandfather that went out of control? Was she originally created by Yasako’s grandfather, but did something entirely different from what he had in mind? In this episode, she looked awfully human-like, apart from her eyes, perhaps.

Posted on 17 November 2007 with categories: Dennou Coil


Yup, this really is a calm-before-the-storm-episode. The pieces are set in the right spot for the finale, and the characters mourn about the things that happened in the previous episode. Finally, the parents of the different children decide to take away their glasses, because it’s now really clear that these things are dangerous. With Kanna and 4423, the details were vague, and most people just assumed that they just died, but it seems that Isako’s case went all over the news, and it’s finally become clear that the cyber-world isn’t something for children to play with.

A lot of time is also spent on Yasako, mourning about the loss of Densuke, and I loved the details put into it. Like everyone else, Yasako is really starting to doubt whether the cyber-world is real, and blames the fact that she can’t cry for Densuke on the fact that he’s just a bunch of codes, while in fact she still can’t accept that he’s gone. I think that that’s because she was surrounded by Isako and Haraken, who both lost someone important to them. For the past few episodes, we’ve seen how Yasako tried to help both of them recover from their troubles, though I think that she never really imagined how it must feel to lose a loved one. That’s what she finds out in this episode.

And ZOMG, I totally forgot about Mayumi! This series is very sneaky in that, mentioning things early in the series that only turn out important near the end of the series. Densuke being kidnapped, Yasako’s grandfather’s room and others are examples of this too, and it really took me a while to realize that Yasako actually DID have some problems in her previous school. According to Wao, she got into a fight with Mayumi. Yasako believes that Mayumi was the one who started bullying her, while it was in fact Yasako who started the bullying.

Another thing I loved about this episode, despite how quiet it was when compared to the other episodes of this series, was how I could relate to so many things. Okay, I may never have seen the death of a loved one, but I can understand Yasako in trying to relate to people who did experience it, because I’ve been doing that very often with different anime-series. It also felt really nostalgic when the parents started confiscating the glasses of their children. The story about Mayumi and the bullying also brought back memories. I think everyone has done some thing in their pasts that they aren’t quite proud of…

Posted on 10 November 2007 with categories: Dennou Coil


This episode was absolutely amazing! Seriously, I was a bit pissed off at the sudden recap-episode, but the real 23rd episode was SO WORTH THE WAIT. I was already satisfied by the hilarious chase of Daiichi in the first half of the episode, but I still can’t believe the awesomeness of the second half of the episode.

I remember noting earlier how similar Haraken and Isako are, and this episode again confirms it, as Isako gets taken to the other side on her own will as well. The only difference here, though, is that she didn’t just do it to meet 4423, but it was also to piss off Nekome and protect Yasako and Densuke. With only three episodes left, how will Dennou Coil conclude? Will the final three episodes be just about finding Yasako’s grandfather and Nekome, or are there people who have been coiled away who are going to make some kind of appearance? The thing also is that Densuke is gone now too! He was “killed” by the humanoid illegals. How is Yasako going to get to her grandfather? I’m assuming that Nekome is going to play a role in this.

Also, this episode just rocked in terms of production-values, and it may be the most visually pleasing one of the entire series, while the rest of the episode was also among the best that this series has to offer. This really has been one amazing anime, but can the creators keep it up for the final three episodes? I definitely hope so!

Posted on 3 November 2007 with categories: Dennou Coil


So, yes. Today’s episode is a recap. Don’t bother hoping for a bit of new content like with episode 14: there isn’t. Every frame of this episode was basically recycled from the other episodes. I really wonder why the creators had to include a recap at this point, so close to the climax. I mean, for a series with 26 episodes, three recaps is just too much.

Posted on 27 October 2007 with categories: Dennou Coil


That first half of the episode was just amazing. The dialogue between Yasako and Isako was just right, and I actually cried when Isako started to break down. Yasako really tried to comfort Isako in the way she would speak to Kyoko, whenever she’s scared. When Kyoko arrived, and asked Isako to save Densuke, she only made things even better.

The rest of the episode built up for the final few episodes of this series. We get a few confirmations of things that the observant ones among us probably already figured out: Nekome and Takeru are brothers, Takeru is the owner of the pink cat with ears, and he basically betrayed Isako out of jealousy towards his brother. I’ve also been reading a few posts from animesuki, and it seems that the reason why Nekome has access to the stronger versions of the Sacchis is because he works for the government, and can basically use them as he pleases.

Also, Densuke indeed is no ordinary dog. I couldn’t catch the details due to my lack of Japanese, but there actually is a chance for both Yasako’s grandfather as 4423’s brother to be alive. Yasako’s grandfather also seemed to know about 4423 before both of them disappeared. The final parts of the episode basically consist out of a chase for Densuke, after Nekome found out that he’s important somehow I must say that it was awesome to see Daiichi in action again. From what I understood is that Densuke is the key to access Coil’s domain, which is what I suspect to be the place where the humanoid illegals live. Hence why both Yasako and Kyoko encountered them.

What’s also interesting is how Nekome refers to Yasako as “sensei”, and how a password to some of the guy’s secret stuff is located inside Nekome’s database. Does this mean that Yasako’s grandfather used to work for the same company that Nekome is working for?

Posted on 20 October 2007 with categories: Dennou Coil


Whoa… I expected a quiet episode to introduce the final arc of this series, and then it comes with this! The amount of development that Isako gets is astonishing, and while the production-values may have dropped a bit, this was one episode not to be missed. It all starts when the building for the school that Yasako and the others go to gets demolished, so all the students move to the other major school, in the middle of the city.

This is especially disadvantageous for Isako, as the guys from a few episodes back attend this school too, and quite easily they manage to turn the entire school against her. Things go much deeper than just that, though. Remember the orange cat? Its master is behind everything, and it ends up erasing 4423-s room in the hospital! It seems that Isako was just used, and 4423 never had a chance to live in the first place! That room in the hospital was just an old cyberspace!

Apparently, there was something that happened in the last episode that made Isako lose her importance, so the decision was made to terminate her. My best guess would be that Nekome was behind everything, as he refuses to answer Isako’s calls. I don’t however think that he’s alone in this (after all, he’d never know which children beared a grudge against Isako), and there’s quite a large possibility that Takeru is his ally.

Then there’s also the question of why Nekome is doing everything. What are his true goals? And why did he approach Haraken in episode fourteen?

Posted on 13 October 2007 with categories: Dennou Coil


This was a truly amazing episode, probably one of the best ones of the series yet. Finally Yasako has the time to really shine. It all starts when Mega-baa and Tamako manage to save Yasako and the others, after which both Tamako and Yasako learn that Haraken ran off with Kanna’s glasses. After that, we get an interesting fact about Tamako: four years ago, she nearly went to the other side herself, if it wasn’t for Mega-baa. I like how that one explains why she works at the cyber-agency at the age of only seventeen. It seems that this is the Denou Coil that Nekome warned Haraken about in episode 14 (at least, I think it is; correct me if I’m wrong): being taken to the other side by the humanoid illegals.

When they arrive at the place where Haraken went to, he already has been “Dennou Coiled”, and it seems that Isako also went after him. Yasako then lets herself get captured by the humanoid illegals, and gets taken to the other side herself in an attempt to get Kanna back. What follows was a magnificent scene, where Haraken finally meets with the remains of Kanna, and Yasako confesses to him, before bringing his body back with some code from Isako.

And so this concludes another arc of this series, and it indeed looks like the final six episodes will centre on 4423, and Takeru will also probably return. I somehow feel that 4423 is more than just another child, taken to the other side. After all, Isako is basically trying to do something even more dangerous than what Haraken’s been doing: getting an actual Dennou Coiled person back to the normal world. I also hope Daiichi will return; I miss the guy.

Posted on 7 October 2007 with categories: Dennou Coil


Sorry for the delay, I was a bit too busy yesterday for the huge amount of shows that came out. But this episode was SO worth it. I know I had my doubts about this series at one point, but right now everything is starting to come together perfectly, and I can’t believe how exciting this episode turned out to be when it almost entirely focuses on Fumie and Yasako, trying to get Kyoko’s body back.

One of the comments from previous week also made me see something interesting: Kyoko is about the same age as when Yasako encountered the humanoid illegal. And I really think that Yasako would have been taken away if it wasn’t for 4423’s efforts. There also seems to be more than one humanoid illegal, though there is a good chance that wao is right, and Yasako’s grandfather is among them. In fact, there could be a chance that all these humanoid illegals were once humans who were taken to the others side. They kept utteing “kyoudai” (sibling) when thy approached Kyoko. That still doesn’t explain why they were looking for 4423 back then, though.

I think Imago plays a key here. If I recall correctly, we’ve seen that Haraken, Yasako and Isako posses it: all of them have lost someone close to them because of the humanoid illegals (assuming that it was really Kanna whom we saw in the previous episode). I wouldn’t be surprised if Mega-baa also turned out to have Imago, because she just knew a tad too much for just an ordinary granny who happens to be good with the cyber-world.

Oh, and Haraken is really going into the wrong direction. Apparently, he’s had an extra pair of glasses hidden somewhere, which he used to back access to the cyber-world, and he’s now really determined to go to the other side. That really can’t be good….

Oh, and one final thing… I’m not sure (my memory could be wrong on this), but didn’t Yasako receive Densuke from either her grandfather or Mega-baa? If she did, then that can’t be a coincidence, especially considering the way Densuke went out and saved Kyoko on his own.

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  • Bam
    (Wednesday, Mar 4. 2015 12:44 AM)
    @Ebod: while it would definitely be ideal if a Japanese actress like Yukie Nakama or Keiko Kitagawa played the role of major Kusanagi, Hollywood practices make it very improbable. So the options left are either Asian actresses that are known in Hollywood such as Rinko Kikuchi, or American actresses of Asain decent like Natalie Mendoza or Grace Huang.
  • Ebod
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 08:22 PM)
    V for Vendetta for me has always been a more “literary” work than Watchmen, but Watchmen is spectacular because it’s a story that can only be told in full scope in the comic format. While I feel like many major themes and events from V for Vendetta could easily be adapted into, say, novel format, the same could not be said of Watchmen. Also, the racist whitewashing Hollywood does of Asian characters really has to stop.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:30 AM)
    Watchmen was deemed ‘unadaptable’ for about thirty years, so just getting what Snyder got out of the material is a huge success; it is said that what he did was to write a book version of Ingmar’s Holy Mountain. Watchmen is the only graphic novel to ever win a Hugo award and is easily the most intricate and multilayered Alan Moore comic, so it’s no surprise that it continues to top ‘best comics of all time’ charts to this day.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:20 AM)
    I beg to differ. Doctor Manhatten is the most intriguing character of Watchmen and the comic is a giant in ,not only in the comic world, but the history of literature itself. It is a deconstruction of superheros and Dr. M shows how afraid the world would really be when faced with a ‘superman’ and how a creature in such a higher realm of time and perception would show apathy toward humans and their foolish struggles.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:15 AM)
    GitS just won’t work. Maybe in a world before the Matrix, but not now with so many elements of it borrowed liberally by so many franchises in various mediums. Scarlet Johansson is decent in roles that fit her. She was enjoyable in Lost In Translation, but race aside she has nothing in common with Kusanagi. This is a travesty and the franchise is dear to me so it especially burns my ass.
  • Emma
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:10 AM)
    While I am no fan of man of steel, Nolan and Snyder, just about anyone would have a hard time taking a difficult character like superman and making him work on screen.
  • Emma
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:08 AM)
    Apart from Veidt and Rorshach I could never get into the characters all that much in watchmen. I also found the film overly long and mediocre acted for the larger part. But to each there own. For Alan moores works I always preferred his Miracleman, swamp thing, V for Vendetta stories.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:06 AM)
    Nolan can produce the action plus personal and dark story that Alita would need, and he also brings talent such as composer Hans Zimmer and Cinematographer Sally Pfister to the table. Him and Snyder have too much combined integrity to make a mockery out of Alita like Spielberg did with the GitS license.
  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 06:03 AM)
    Well Snyder has respect for his source materials and that is key in anime-to-film adaptations. Hell I’m a big Watchmen fan and I thought his version was (almost painfully) close to the comic. You’re not going to get that anywhere else in Hollywood. Also the combination of Nolan/Snyder is quite different than them individually.
  • Emma
    (Tuesday, Mar 3. 2015 05:34 AM)
    And directed it as a co-production with America, using a Japanese cast.
    Yeah…this is impossible…

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