Reviews: C Control

Cool ideas, but too short to capitalize on them

[C] is an anime with a rather novel premise: saving or destroying the world through abstract battles in an alternate dimension meant to represent stock exchange. Now, as a guy who knows next to nothing about economics, much of the interesting subtext and references to real-life economic theory went way over my head, but the show manages to dumb it all down enough for a dumbass like me to get the gist of what's going on even if the subtleties of the events are beyond me.

And yet, for all the cool ideas, interesting settings, and all the diverse motivations of the characters, it tries to accomplish too much in only 11 episodes. To be perfectly honest, halfway through the series I found myself looking to see if it had just been poorly adapted from a manga or novel. Characters' motivations were made apparent, but rarely expanded on in full; Masakaki made constant mentions of higher-ups who he receives orders from, but we only catch a glimpse of what might be that boss for a minute or so; the very idea of the Financial District is never fully explained and only given a little bit of speculation early on in the series. In short, it unfortunately feels very rushed, even in areas that seem like they'd be pretty important to not rush, such as Yoga and Msyu's relationship, which is kind of just up in the air for most of the series, or just what the hell "C" actually is. We're nearly always given enough information to know what we need to know, but never more than that and I feel the story suffers for that reason.

I'd like to see more from this universe (although that doesn't seem likely), but I don't want to see it in the form of an anime. Given the nature of the conflict - several different groups of people, all really trying to achieve the same thing but in different ways - I really feel the story would be better suited to a visual novel with branching story paths.

But, all my gripes aside, I still largely enjoyed the ride. Cool concept, pretty locations, badass fight scenes, and a really likable cast of characters make it an enjoyable watch, even if I'm left with too many questions that weren't answered. I give [C] a score of 6/10: perfectly acceptable, but a bit disappointing and wasteful in regards to all the cool ideas it tried to put forth.