In an effort to learn more about [[AttackOfTheFiftyFootWhatever metallic aliens]] that have been plaguing the planet for the past years, Dr. Noguchi and assistant Maki Agata try to bring to life a construct pieced together from various destroyed aliens. They recruit Takuto Kaneshiro, Maki's boyfriend at the college they both attend, into the project because of his talent for metallurgy. While Takuto is unhappy with Maki keeping secrets from him again, he reluctantly helps with the project -- but in the process of reviving the monster that Noguchi has aptly called Frank (short for Frankenstein), unidentified soldiers invade the facility known as MORGUE. The soldiers cut the power, which leads to a power surge that violently brings Frank to life and causes an explosion which kills everyone in the facility -- except Takuto.

"Mr. X" visits the scarred (emotionally and [[GoodScarsEvilScars physically]]) Takuto in the hospital and offers him a chance to get his vengeance on the monster he blames for killing Maki and destroying his life. Months later, Lt. Ryu Soma is born from the ashes of Takuto's soul; he re-enters life as a military pilot for the organization known as FUNERAL, which deals with the attacking aliens (and has also recaptured Frank, who escaped after the explosion at MORGUE). It quickly becomes clear that Frank has become the best weapon FUNERAL has to defend against the aliens, which leaves Ryu torn between getting revenge for the woman he loved and protecting his newfound comrades.

Further complicating the picture is a young girl named Hattie; besides being the only person who can communicate with Frank, she also bears a striking resemblance to Maki. As it becomes apparent that Frank is more than a simple monster, Ryu and his FUNERAL comrades have to come to terms with questions of [[ContemplateOurNavels human identity, grief, and loss]].

''Argento Soma'' originally aired on Creator/TVTokyo with 25 episodes from 2000 to 2001, and was followed by the OVA "Alone and By Myself".
!!''Argento Soma'' has examples of:
* BadassGrandpa
* BeardOfEvil: Mr. X, whose epic red goatee fits the part spot on. [[spoiler: He's not in the least evil, though, just a [[ManipulativeBastard manipulative asshole]].]]
* BigFriendlyDog: Walton.
* BlindIdiotTranslation: "ROCK ON".
* DarkSkinnedBlond
* DealWiththeDevil: Soma's deal with Mr. X to get into FUNERAL. Down to the [[TemptingApple apple motif]] ([[spoiler:Which Soma later adopts himself]]).
* FauxlosophicNarration
* FluffyTheTerrible: Frank, the giant alien robot.
* FourStarBadass: General Lawrence, [[spoiler: AKA ''Mr. X'']]. He's more of a ManipulativeBastard, true, but hanging the outcome of his BatmanGambit on ''himself'' and dancing through a GambitPileup basically unscathed takes serious balls.
* FunWithAcronyms: FUNERAL and MORGUE.
* GambitRoulette: [[strike:Mr. X]][[spoiler:Gen. Lawrence]] danced through the GambitPileup in the finale with the nothing worse to wear than a limp and a walking stick, but everything ended ''his'' way -- and, to the everyone's surprise, that way was the ''best''.
* GetOutOfJailFreeCard: Refreshingly averted, when all the charade went up in smoke, Soma was court-martialed and got a six years sentence. Though, for all his troubles, he ''wasn't'' stripped of his rank and was even ''promoted'' while behind bars.
* GoodScarsEvilScars: Half of Soma's face was scarred in the accident. Which side is in focus is usually indicative of how heartless he's being at the time. Worth noting that he refused plastic surgery to have the scars removed.
* HumongousMecha
* IdiosyncraticEpisodeNaming: Each episode name is of the form [[TheNounAndTheNoun "A and B"]] and the next episode is "B and C", followed by "C and D", etc. The final episode closes the loop back to the first.
* InsufferableGenius: Takuto.
* ItsPersonal
* JerkAss: (Soma, certainly - but even before his StartOfDarkness, Takuto hardly treated his girlfriend well.
** Well, from all the snark that was tossed between them, they were definitely in the MasochismTango.
* {{Kaiju}}: The aliens of the series.
* LightningCanDoAnything
* MoralityPet: The little girl that reminds Soma of his deceased girlfriend is probably the only thing stopping him from JumpingOffTheSlipperySlope.
** Hattie and Frank are sort of a compound MoralityPet.
* NiceHat: Hattie, of course.
* TheOnlyOneAllowedToDefeatYou: Soma feels this towards Frank, the 'Giant Alien Robot'.
** Amusingly enough, at one point, Frank is in danger, and Soma is desperate to get close enough to finish him off. His teammates, however, interpret this is him trying to rescue Frank, and join in, ultimately succeeding in the 'rescue'.
* OracularUrchin: Harriet 'Hattie' Bartholomew.
* OurElvesAreBetter / OurFairiesAreDifferent: Hattie refers to Frank as "Y˘sei-kun," translated in Bandai's R1 release as "Mr. Elf," although "y˘sei" can also be translated as "fairy." Hattie's grandfather also makes wood carvings of elves and fairies he claims to have seen.
* RecycledINSPACE: A reinterpretation of the story of FrankensteinsMonster set [[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: Twenty Minutes Into The Future ]]
and [[/folder]]

[[folder: with mecha! ]]

** {{Lampshaded}} by Ryu Soma himself in the Bandai dub when he commented on how the experiment reminded him of Dr. Frankenstein and the monster itself.
** It's also basically a remake of [[Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion Eva]], but with ''normal people'' instead of those neurotic wrecks.
* SociopathicHero / VillainProtagonist: Soma is definitely the former, and sometimes borders on the latter at the peak of his obsession.
* SurvivalMantra/ MadnessMantra: In the first episode, right after the accident. "Maki... Maki... Maki... Maki... Maki..."
* StealthMentor: Mr. X to Soma, who definitely hates the guy's guts, but could do nothing but learn from him.
* TallDarkAndSnarky: Ooh, booy, where to start...
* TeamMom: Major Lana Ines, the CO of FUNERAL.
* TemptingApple: Mr. X likes to toss an apple when he tries to make an impression. [[spoiler: Later Soma adopts the same habit, though [[ColorCodedForYourConvenience his apple is green, not red]].]]
* ThatManIsDead: How Soma feels about Takuto, who he refers to as "some jerk I used to know."
* ThereAreNoTherapists: An interesting subversion: There ''are'' no therapists in the show, but instead it's chock full of ''{{Warrior Therapist}}s'', and nobody's mental problems are all that severe to begin with.
* TokyoIsTheCenterOfTheUniverse: Averted; the show is set in North America. (Along the eastern part of the USA/Canada border, to be precise.)
* TookALevelInBadass: From a calm and peaceful scientific type to a brash and confrontational AcePilot. Also notable for ''not'' explaining it ''at all''.
** There is a short scene in episode 1 when we learn Takuto once applied to be an astronaut/pilot. Presumably he had some training.
* TransformingMecha: [[JustifiedTrope Justified]]; part of the reason why the [=SARGs=] can do this is so that the public won't be alarmed by their humanoid forms and mistake them for, say, the aliens that FUNERAL is fighting.
* TwistEnding: The aliens are...not what one might expect.
* TwoFaced: Soma.
* {{UST}}: [[BetaCouple Captain Hartland and Major Ines]]. Notable for still remaining unresolved in the DistantFinale, though [[spoiler: Madame President]] ''does'' look a bit too disturbed [[spoiler: when ''Ulysses'' departs]].