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  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Looking at Satoru's behavior, one could argue he's going through a sort of identity crisis as a side-effect of being put in his eleven-year-old body. For one thing, he, the emotionally-numb Satoru is almost creepily good at imitating the way his child self talks, and indeed seems to actually be a much more emotional person overall. The fact that he constantly has to remind himself that he's a grown man when finding himself attracted to Kayo also points towards some confusion and/or mild amnesia.
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  • Awesome Music: The theme song, Asian Kung-Fu Generation's Re:Re really puts out a mixture of somber wonder and excitement at revealing the truth while showing tender childhood moments mixed with adult hardships.
  • Author's Saving Throw: The Netflix series makes a few improvements over the source material.
    • Yashiro is made to look more like an everyman, as opposed to how Obviously Evil he was in the other incarnations.
    • Akemi Hinazuki is less over-the-top with her abuse. On that subject, the controversial scenes of her abusing Kayo on-screen were removed.
  • Base-Breaking Character: The serial killer Gaku Yashiro is pretty divisive. One camp appreciates him for being a genuinely frightening and devious villain. However, he also has his own fair share of detractors, pointing out his generic motive and predictability, and consider him to be one of the series' weaker points.
  • Broken Base: What genre ERASED exactly falls into is a huge topic of debate among readers and viewers. People either label this as a mystery, thriller, or drama and turn down any arguments that it falls into the other two. Some see ERASED as a mystery since the story is about Satoru trying to find out who the killer from his childhood is, some lean more on thriller since the whole purpose of the story is to keep you in suspense and create an intense atmosphere. It doesn't help that a lot of the detractors claim that ERASED fell short as a mystery due to the Captain Obvious Reveal and fell short as a thriller since the cliffhangers only really worked if you read the manga while it was publishing or watched the anime while it was airing. Those who see ERASED as a drama however claim that the mystery and thriller elements aren't relevant as the story is about Satoru reconnecting with his inner child and the mystery is mostly there be one of many conflicts for his character.
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  • Captain Obvious Reveal: Although many readers/viewers were still unaware, the reveal that Yashiro is the killer was considered as far too obvious by those proficient in the mystery genre. Then again, the story fits more in the 'thriller' genre than being a straight-up mystery.
  • Complete Monster:
    • The Serial Killer, Gaku Yashiro, is the intelligent and psychopathic mastermind behind almost all of the terrible events in the story. As a child, the killer felt bored and "empty" in life, and as a result, began performing wicked actions to bring thrill into his life, from drowning numerous hamsters, to luring little girls to his violent older brother who would rape them. After killing said brother and getting away with it, he became obsessed with the thrill he acheived by murdering people, and to this end, began kidnapping and brutally murdering little girls and framing innocents for his crimes, and, when his fiancée became suspicious of his crimes, he flung her out of a window and made it look like a suicide. Spending decades kidnapping, murdering, and framing innocents, the killer spurs Satoru Fujinuma into action when he viciously murders the man's mother and frames him for it. When Satoru is sent back in time to save 3 children from Yashiro, Yashiro attempts to drown him, now 11 years old, for thwarting his plans, which results in Satoru being plunged into a coma for 15 years, throughout which Yashiro murdered his way into a political position. Luring a now-awake Satoru to an isolated campsite along with Kumi, a young leukemia patient, Yashiro plans to drown Kumi while forcing Satoru to watch, before burning him alive. Even when beaten, Yashiro, refusing to be arrested for his crimes, tries to kill both himself and Satoru in one fell swoop. Claiming he is no worse than anyone else simply because he murders people, the killer used his "unfulfillment" as an excuse to perpetrate his decades-long list of atrocities.
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    • The unnamed, manga-exclusive, and flashback-only older brother of the killer manages to stand out as horrific and monstrous despite only appearing in one chapter. A sociopathic bully, the brother regularly assaulted his own little sibling and other kids at his school. Showing his true monstrosity, the brother formed a partnership with the willing killer where, after the killer lured little girls to him, he would rape them, a process that went on for years and resulted in dozens of rapes. When the brother accidentally strangled one of his victims to death trying to keep her from calling for help, he tried to frame his younger brother for the crime, showing no regret or empathy for his victim. Though only a teenager, the brother made his mark as the most monstrous character in the story along with his Serial Killer brother.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse:
    • Kenya, to the point where he received his own spinoff novel in the form of Another Record.
    • Sachiko for her badass Mama Bear moments.
  • Fandom Rivalry: With Ajin, Kono Subarashii Sekai ni Shukufuku o!, and Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu. Alongside Erased, all three of these shows were the ones being labeled as "anime of the season" by their respective viewers. However, while Erased eventually fell victim to Hype Backlash, those three shows ended up being sleeper hits with all of them getting second seasons. The most notable of the rivalries was with Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu. Many people who watched that along with Erased were the most vocal about their dislike towards Erased and how Showa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu was the true anime of the season.
  • Foe Yay Shipping: Yashiro/Satoru appears to be the most popular Fan-Preferred Couple on Pixiv.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: The hilarious candy scene in episode 9 is made much less hilarious when you find out that the candy and the "dating tips" were used by him to abduct children.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Mitsuru Miyamoto's role a Gaku Yashiro is pretty hilarious if you take into account he is the Japanese dub voice of adult Simba: In Simba's case, he was framed for the murder of his father Mufasa by his uncle Scar, and he finaly gets rid of him at the end. On the other hand, and at least in the manga, Yashiro, while also framed for a crime by a relative of his, in this case his older brother, he also become into a Serial Killer.
  • Hype Backlash: When a single show towers above the rest of its season, even gaining a 9+ rating and spot in the top 10 on MyAnimeList.netnote  after only four episodes, this will obviously be the result, but this series has managed to be one of the most divisive in recent times, even more so than One-Punch Man.
  • Internet Backdraft:
    • To some: The Anime being animated in a Anamorphic Scope (2.35:1 ratio), which results in an unsettling letterbox.
    • The final two episodes of the anime adaptation, due to pacing issues and deviation from the source material, were not very well-liked even among those that were fans of the show.
  • Narm:
    • Sachiko's facial character design, while apparently standard for the series (other female characters, thought not all, are drawn the same way), can be a bit silly due to her perhaps too exaggerated lips and mouth.
    • The English title name change looks quite ridiculous when the official subtitles plant them right under the title logo every time the opening plays, as if one word could translate the full phrase.
    • While violence to children is no laughing matter, Kayo's mother is so one-dimensionally evil and seems to do nothing other than mistreating her daughter, that she often appears plain ridiculous.
    • Satoru's faces when he echoes his thoughts.
    • Despite the story's usual subversion of tropes and realistic take on human behavior, the anime has a fondness for employing the comparatively childish Red Eyes, Take Warning whenever possible for any character who's acting suspicious, even when they're not being particularly malicious or the suspicious behavior is a Red Herring.
      • This happens in a particularly tense moment in episode 10, and coupled with an oddly drawn facial expression, it might induce an unintentional chuckle.
      • The entirety of the first half of Episode 09 is even worse in regards to Kayo's mother's Hidden Depths. The reason she mistreated her own daughter was because her husband was also an one-dimensional evil father that happened to mistreat his wife - which then led her into unleashing her own abusive nature. This was supposed to be a Tear Jerker as she was revealed to be more human and broken than what was believed (her mother wasn't a good parent either, as her sudden appearance alongside Satoru, Sachiko, Yashiro and the Child Services before it was enough to trigger this whole mess), but for the most part it's just a failed Rescued from the Scrappy Heap moment of a character whose backstory was just parroting characterization.
      • In the anime at the very least, this moment isn't played for sympathy really as Satoru comments. Neither he nor Kayo feel moved by the overly exaggerated expression of sadness. He even says that Kayo's mother's tears were probably of self-pity rather than true sadness. What it really serves to show is that having bad things done to you is not a justification for taking it out on other people, a sentiment that is echoed later with Yashiro. Feeling empty on the inside and having an abusive and monstrous brother doesn't justify his later murderous sprees as he would like to convince you.
  • Never Live It Down: Satoru's Did Not Get the Girl end after Kayo marries to Hiromi instead of him.
  • Nightmare Fuel: The Reveal in episode 10. Satoru is crushed when he realizes that he's in the car with the killer. And then said killer sends the car into a freezing lake that nearly kills him and takes away 15 years of his life.
  • The Scrappy: Akemi, Kayo's mother, is supposed to be hated for being an abusive mother, but many felt like her true problem is that she comes off as one-dimensional by abusing Kayo simply For the Evulz and then given a flimsy Freudian Excuse to justify her behavior.
  • Ship-to-Ship Combat: After chapter 35, with the revelation of Kayo marrying Hiromi and the manga spending a large amount of time on Satoru and Airi's relationship, Satoru/Kayo fans started to take offense at the very concept of Satoru/Airi, often subjecting Airi to Die for Our Ship for those reasons. Interestingly, although there's copious amounts of Ship Tease for both options, the story never establishes whether any of them have actual feelings for each other.
  • Spiritual Adaptation: With the use of Time Travel to solve a murder mystery and the culprit being the protagonist's teacher, many have called this an anime adaptation of Life Is Strange.
  • Squick:
    • The idea of the very much mentally still twenty nine years old Satoru taking the eleven-year old Kayo on dates. It's usually done subtly and platonically enough for the audience not to think about the implications too hard...other than an anime-original scene when he's listening to the sounds of Kayo having fun with his mom in the bath, and has to scold himself for his excitation, reminding himself that he's 29 years old.
    • Several fans are horrified and weirded out at the Foe Yay of Yashiro and Satoru due to how much the pairing reeks of Mind Game Ship.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Akemi, who is revealed to have suffered abuse at the hands of her husband, which led to her abusive behavior. Much like Akito Sohma, not everybody thinks abuse justifies abuse (although this sentiment does seem to be echoed by onlooking characters like Satoru, who doesn't look on all that fondly).
  • Woolseyism: The title ERASED (used for the official English translation of the anime and the French translation of the manga) condenses the poetic but rather unwieldy-to-translate original title of "The Town Where Only I Am Missing". It also preserves the title's trick of employing a double meaning in regards to what it actually refers to: in the same way "the town where only I am missing" initially seems to refer to Kayo's poem about the pain of her abuse but actually refers to Satoru's absence for fifteen years in the new timeline, "erased" could refer to either Satoru's actions of "erasing" disastrous events in his revivals or the fact that Satoru was effectively "erased" from the lives of those around him for fifteen years.

Alternative Title(s): Boku Dake Ga Inai Machi


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