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Reviews Comments: Two episodes in, and I've stopped watching it. Elfen Lied episode review by maninahat

The show alternates between gory, psychological sci-fi drama, and a cutesy, harem hi-jinks. Unfortunately, both these elements are done better in other animes. Akira trumps the former by being far more disturbing and grotesque, Chobits succeeds over the latter by actually managing to be cute and funny. Whilst I appreciate the shows premise of combining two very different genres which lie at opposite ends of the scale, I just don't think it pulls off either element well enough to pass.

Then there are the characters. The characters I was introduced to made me want to head-desk. Maybe there is a perfectly good reason for why our male hero didn't immediately report a naked, brain-damaged, lost girl straight to the authorities as soon as he found her. Perhaps later, there would be an explanation for why the boy didn't talk to the police, even after they come knocking on his door for the specific purpose of asking him about the very same lost girl. But I don't know, because I wasn't prepared to wait long for some excuse to materialise. Our male "hero" is kidnapping someone without any obvious, sensible reason other than him possibly being an asshole. Come to think of it, the writers might have had a much better story if that were the case. Then there was the villain, a hammy super-soldier who was so over the top, I thought he was some kind of joke.

Finally there is the psychic girl, who I couldn't root for either. The first thing you see her doing is her killing an entire facility full of people. Even those who weren't displaying an obvious threat. Wouldn't the world be better off if she was killed? I might sympathise with her condition, but she still seems better off dead. No amount of doe eyes, mental retardation, or cat impressions will make up for that. It was like sticking Pierrot Le Fou in a puppy outfit and then expecting me to overlook his crimes against humanity (however justified).

The anime may have all the answers to these issues in later episodes, but it completely failed to captivate my interest long enough to make up for them. In short, I wasn't hooked.


  • Dracomicron
  • 20th Apr 10
You were apparently interested enough to complain about it here, however. Elfen Lied is certainly a grim, dark, and nasty seinen anime on a par with Gantz and Mnemosyne, and it's definitely not everyone's cup of tea.

That said, I don't know why you bothered to write a review of something you admit to abandoning after only two episodes. Speculating on whether or not there's a reason for the characters' actions (note: there is) does not a good review make. Your question over whether or not the world would be better off if Lucy were killed is actually a significant question later in the series after more is revealed about what she is and what her purpose is.

I have stopped watching plenty of shows in my time, but in those cases I really didn't feel compelled to presume to review them with incomplete information.
  • maninahat
  • 20th Apr 10
I suppose your right. Though I hoped my review would at least save someone the 20 or 40 minutes of their time they would have wasted watching a bad show, only to come to a similar conclusion in a similar amount of time. You don't need to eat much more than a couple of bites of a cake to realise how bad it tastes; I would expect the critic to give up and pan the desert, rather than persevere.

I'm not actually put off by the grim darkness of a show - though I didn't find it very effective in Elfen Lied. Not as much as Akira, or even gantz. In those shows, the violence feels more viceral, and far more unsettling (which is the point).
  • Dentaku
  • 29th Jul 10
You know, you might at least try to watch a whole series before you post a review about it.
  • SickleYield
  • 23rd Oct 10
I stopped watching at Episode 3 for similar reasons. If a show can't come up with characters whose motivations make the smallest iota of sense in three episodes, and these incomprehensible characters do not make up for that by being sympathetic or interesting, and the setting isn't interesting either, that show is not worth watching. Childlike characters in contrived fanservice situations are not a good reason to watch a show this bad (especially not if, like yrs. truly, you don't like those character types to begin with). The beautifully artistic intro makes the show seem like it's going to be in some what well-directed or composed. It's not.
  • yanqui9
  • 25th Sep 11
"psychic girl... killing off an entire facility of people..." erm... What anime are we talking about here?!? I've read both the manga and seen the anime of Chobits all the way through and I don't recall anything even remotely like what you describe happening. I admit, Clamp manga is not for everyone. It is multitasking and has many plot and thought streams going on at once.

Oh okay, I just remembered... Freya blows up the peepshow... well ummmmmm the guy was about to rape Chi?!? He was about to digitally violate her. If you had stuck with the show, you'd learn that that sort of thing really pisses Freya off. Beyond that, they *DELIBERATELY* make a bystander say that no one was killed in the incident in both the manga and anime.

I'm writing off your "review" to a show which has rubbed you the wrong way. Hell, happens to me all the time. But as a review? Worthless.
  • maninahat
  • 28th Sep 11
Sorry, yanqui, this review isn't meant to be about Chobits. It is about Elfen Lied. I'm not sure why it is in the Chobits page, but it is nice to finally find my old review again. Anyone know why it might have moved pages?
  • eveil
  • 28th Sep 11
Two episodes? That's probably a record for the least amount of content seen before writing a review.
  • maninahat
  • 28th Sep 11
Except for episode reviews?
  • eveil
  • 28th Sep 11
Let me rephrase that: Smallest percentage of total content of the work being reviewed.
  • marcellX
  • 28th Sep 11
Well it's a little confusing since you're not exactly complaining about the specific episode, but about the series as a whole and how you based your conclusion on the first two episodes.

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