Monday, April 18, 2011

4/11: Media of the Month!!!!

Casshern Sins is a gorgeous anime I just finished watching. I have the Funimation Network on my TV...but I didn't want to wait week after week for new episodes, so I watched the first 12 episodes on Netflix and the last 12 online.

Casshern Sins is one of those rare animes that takes your breath away with its beauty. I loved the artwork. Very old school. Muted colors except for intense bursts in random the "C" on Casshern's chest. I loved the way the characters' eyes look--so gorgeous! Casshern is so beautifully drawn, I honestly wanted to reach through my screen and touch him.

Like many post-appocalytpic animes, Casshern Sins is very moody and dark...cerebral...ambiguous... The characters are saturated with angst--the plot is hard to follow and is somewhat repetitive. Basically, the story is about a planet of robots (humans are nearly extinct) who are trying to find meaning in their lives now that they are decaying and rusting to death. With the exception of Casshern, an identical nemesis named Dio and his sadistic girlfriend, Leda, none of the other robots can reproduce sexually. Casshern is on a journey to reclaim his lost memories and put an end to the Ruin he caused.

My favorite character is Sophita. She's only seen in one episode (episode four) but I loved every moment her. Although Casshern is romantically involved (if you can call it that) with another character, Lyuze, there is obvious chemistry with Sophita, The Angel of Ruin. He does not kill her even though she impales him with a spear and insists on fighting him to the death.

Sophita does not know how to express herself unless she is fighting. She is a very passionate character, but is incapable of voicing her feelings. After following Casshern around for most of the episode, she falls in love with him and fights him so she can "show" him how deeply she cares for him. Casshern allows her to stab him without fighting back.

This is a pivotal moment in the series, as it is the first time Casshern doesn't black out during a fight and destroys everything around him. When Sophita pulls away, she realizes she does not want to hurt Casshern and so departs, vowing to return someday (although in the anime, she never does.) It is my favorite scene in the anime because it is so beautiful, and for whatever reason I strongly relate to both Sophita and Casshern. Also...she might not be talking about "fighting" at all...but about sex and relationships. She wants more but she is only a robot (and unlike Casshern, she wasn't made to love and be sexual).  

Here is the scene. Unfortunately I could only find the subbed version. If you are going to watch Casshern Sins, the dubbed English version is phenomenal (with the exception of Ringo's voice).

All in all, the animation is beautiful, the characters are intriguing, but the incomprehensible storyline and rushed ending ruins it! I don't know if I'll watch it a second time...but I did enjoy it while it lasted. 6/10.


J.A. Beard said...

Well, the '93 Casshen wasn't great, but a lot better than the '73 version, so if this version was better than the '93 version, then the next iteration in 15-20 years should be pretty solid viewing.

Vegetarian Cannibal said...

I've never seen any of the other versions, but based on what I've seen with Casshern Sins and what I've read online, I'm guessing it is just as mediocre.

What kills me about the Casshern franchise it that it has such promise! Somewhere along line the writers just gave up or something...I dunno. Maybe in 15-20yrs they'll finally do the series justice, yeah...

Thanks for commenting! :)

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