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Japanese: NO.6 ナンバー・シックス
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jul 8, 2011 to Sep 16, 2011
Duration: 23 min. per episode
Rating: R - 17+ (violence & profanity)L represents licensing company
Score: 7.781 (scored by 44172 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.
Popular TagsNo tags found
Sep 24, 2011
NOTE: For my sake, I’m writing Nezumi, as Nezumi, and not “Rat” like in the subs, and Shion instead of Sion, like the MAL character page.
Story – 8/10. No.6 is a utopia, there is no poverty, there are no conflicts, there are no problems. You will live happily and peacefully within these safe walls, and you will wear this lovely bracelet that is your identity. Oh, and one last thing: if you doubt us, we won’t hesitate to eliminate you. Ignorance really is bliss.
On his 12th birthday, Shion hides and helps an injured Nezumi, a VC. This leads to being stripped of his rights to live in Cronos and qualification to enter the Special Course. There’s a time skip, and suddenly it’s four years later and instead of studying ecology, Shion’s a park worker. After witnessing two people strangely die, he’s taken away by the Bureau of Safety. At that point, he’s rescued by Nezumi and whisked away to the Western District to discover the truth about No.6.
No.6 is listed as Sci-fi and Action, but there are also elements of Fantasy and Shounen-ai. Yes, shounen-ai. I’m not sure if I view it as a good thing, or bad. I mean, I’m a fan of yaoi/shounen-ai, so that probably contributes largely to the fact I enjoyed it, but I know there are a ton of people who aren’t comfortable with it.
If you’re a fan of shounen-ai, you will enjoy this. Well, to be honest, I’m not sure it would be able to appeal to any other audience beside BL fans...
Aside from the homosexual content, No.6 starts off with an intriguing plot – and I won’t lie, I’m a total sucker for utopia/dystopia stories. But like a lot of people, I thought this had a lot of potential to be something amazing, but it never did reach what it could have; whether it’s because of the length of the anime, or because it got side-tracked by shounen-ai fan service, I’m not sure. I kind of feel like a lot of loose ends weren’t dealt with.
Art – 7.25/10. The art... isn’t one of No.6’s stronger points. While it isn’t terrible, it isn’t amazing. The characters are sometimes really awkwardly drawn/animated, such as Shion’s scar or his blushing. But the background and scenery are amazing, and the OP was done beautifully. Especially the last thirty seconds.
Sound – 9/10. I won’t lie; I strongly disliked the OP at first. I thought it was really strange sounding and the singer’s voice was abnormally high... but as the episodes went on, I’ve grown to like them quite a bit. I found myself watching and listening to it on replay. Anyways, it suited the feel of No.6 perfectly. And ohmygosh, the ED. EDs are something I skip over all the time. Not this one. I couldn’t. This one I liked right away. It felt incredibly sad, almost like nostalgia. As cheesy as this sounds, my heart clenches when I hear it. Background music was very subtle, but added wonderfully to the overall feel.
The voice actors also did a pretty good job. Nezumi’s singing was nice... though, it took a bit of time getting used to little Shion’s and little Nezumi’s deep voices...
Character – 8/10. I cried. I got so emotionally attached, that tears came pouring out when Nezumi began singing in the last episode, despite how confused I was.
In the beginning you’re introduced to 12-year-old Nezumi. Running around from authorities in what seems to be a sewage system, panting, with blood trickling down his arm. He meets a dead end, where steel bars are closing off on an opening, preventing chances of escape. Then you’re introduced to 12-year-old Shion. Right away their lives are contrasted. Shion’s sitting at his desk in the middle of Safu’s presentation; there hasn’t been any real hardships he’s been through in life since being ranked as having highest intelligence.
Shion is naive, innocent, kind, and for the most part, ignorant like many other No.6 citizens. Nezumi is sharp-tongued, gives of an arrogant vibe, and is artsy. Yes, their personalities have been done before, but I don’t think you’ll get bored of them... Shion and Nezumi are actually quite likable. As the anime progresses, you see moments of complete contradiction to their personalities which I found quite interesting. Shion has a darker, more aggressive side that comes out when it comes to Nezumi, and Nezumi definitely has a soft spot when it comes to Shion. This might make them seem out of character at times, but I think that’s the point. They bring out entirely new sides of each other.
As for the other supporting characters: Karan, Inukashi, Rikiga, even Yoming, – they’re pretty okay. You know general information about their life and their past, but not in great detail. They’re not exactly incredibly developed characters either, but the anime was only 11 episodes long.
The only one I found kind of strange was Elyurias/Safu. I didn’t really understand her presence or character...
Enjoyment – 10/10. I enjoyed this 10/10 easily, even the second time going through. I grinned and I worried, I eagerly clicked each episode and got frustrated over waiting for the next one. With this anime, I watched it each episode from beginning to end, OP to ED. Stating it simply: I loved watching it [and rewatching it.] The last episode did confuse me a bit, but I’m seriously longing for more.
Overall – Each category is weighted differently for me, and of course, there are always miscellaneous factors. I consider Story to account for 25% of the overall ranking of animes, Art 10%, Sound 10%, Character 25%, and Enjoyment 30%.
[80% x 0.25] + [72.5% x 0.10] + [90% x 0.10] + [80% x 0.25] + [100% x 0.30] = 86.25%
Round it up, and that’s how No.6 gets a 9/10 from me... and my first review on MAL. ^_______^
Apr 14, 2013
Let"s take a closer look.
Just a fair warning, this is not an anime for people who cannot stand shounen ai. Not that it's a vital piece to the story or anything, but there are still some moments that might turn you off if you don't enjoy that kind of romance.
So here's the story. Sion, our protagonist, was a young, promising student. On the night of his 12th birthday, he met a fleeing fugitive, Nezumi. Despite knowing that he would be punished by the law, hid and helped him escape. Four years later, after witnessing a strange event at work, he was taken away by the police and was rescued by Nezumi and the two of them ran to the outside world that the walls of no. 6 was trying to hide from its inhabitants.
After putting so much of drama in the opening episodes of the show, you would think that the creators would then try to maintain the audience's attention right? Wrong. The remainder of No.6 is then used to explain side characters that you would never care about, raises conflicts that would just disappear not to ever return. Maybe it's because of how short this series is, but that does not cover up for the fact that there are many episodes that just waste time building up to a good development, and then completely forgets about it next week. I've find myself wanting to drop no. 6 because of that. It is not until near the end of the show when things are finally explained and the plot moves on. However, by the time that happens, we're already on the last few episodes and there's no room left to truly establish a good motive or villain.
Although the character design is not very outstanding, Studio Bones does do a very good job of animating No. 6. The few actions scenes are worth watching and they do make the show a lot more enjoyable. Of course, this is not FMA, but it is fun looking at Nezumi beating the crap out of some random grunt.
Music is perhaps No. 6 worst aspect. The op and ed are fine, and I rather enjoyed them, but the BGM is bad to say the least and some tracks just simply fails to deliver a good moment. That is not very annoying in through out most of the anime since nothing really happens, but when things really heat up later on, don't expect shivers to run down your spine because of the epic music.
As I mentions before, the side characters of this show are not very interesting. Although No.6 does try to give the audience something to relate to them, there's not very much to grasp onto as they are only given a few minutes of back story at best before being thrown into the plot device closet again. Where the show really shines is the interaction between Nezumi and Sion and that's what made me stick around. I'm not going to reveal a lot of it here since I don't want to spoil it for anyone, but I'm going to say that through their interactions, they grow a lot together and character development is always very appreciated in my book.
This show was recommended to me by a friend who was praising it a lot, and I could see why. Does that mean I enjoy it as much as she did? Unfortunately no. Despite having potential, No. 6 just falls short of many other brethren of the same genre, and the music did not help a lot either.
If you don't watch a lot of anime in the scifi or dystopia genre, you might find No.6 a refreshing deviation from your typical high school anime. It has a decent plot, and overall solid leads. However, if you're the type that could talk about Ergo Proxy, Psycho Pass, etc. for days on end, this title might be a bit lack luster for you. Despite that however, No. 6 does manage to pull itself through in the end. Is it an anime that you must watch before you kick the bucket? No. But is it a good way to spend a boring Saturday afternoon? Yes.
Dec 25, 2013
Let’s start with the plot, which I gave a solid 7. This anime takes place in a supposed “utopia” district known as “No. 6,” the name creatively given for it being the 6th city in the walls of human habitat that was created after [Insert spoiler Here.] The story focuses on an intelligent boy named Shion who was born in No. 6 and had all of his privileges stripped from him after he saved the life of an escaped boy named Nezumi, or Rat. Years later, Shion grows up to become a park manager in No. 6 and starts questioning the reality and legitimate nature of the city, only to be arrested for suggested suspicion of betrayal; and who rescues him? Nezumi, after 4 years. They go on to live in the western District outside the Walls of No. 6 which is where all of the rejects run away to and is considered to be one of the most dangerous places to reside. This all occurs while Nezumi and Shion begin to understand each other and develop a strong friendship and hinted relationship that is thought to be deeper than that. The plot is definitely a good idea on paper even though the “dystopian society” and “totalitarian” genre is getting more and more popular every single year as anime continues to spread across America, and with only 11 episodes, they managed to fit it all in while adding the finer details. The best points of this plot were definitely the added contrasting elements. While the mood of the anime was supposed to be hopeless, depressing, and scary; the fact that Nezumi and Shion manage to find hope and have their friendship shine through really added to the plot. Also, the fluff in the anime, including the suggestive “romance” scenes b/w the two main protagonists, wasn’t too overwhelming and it respected the fact that the anime was still a shounen. The problems with the plot seemed to focus around the fact that the anime was only 11 episodes long. If it was 12, or 13, like most, I think all of the holes in the plot would’ve been resolved peacefully. I mean, I never found out the secret behind the bees, and the goals of the antagonists. I don’t know if it was just me, but it was just too obvious to ignore. The plot was obviously rushed and that definitely took away from the plot, adding the fact that a lot was changed around compared to the manga. It took away the plot's potential even though it was such a good idea.
While talking about the art, I might as well start off with the character designs. I’d say they were creative, but I can’t let go of the fact that Nezumi and Shion look so much like Allen and Kanda from D. Gray Man. Shion even has a pink scar in the same place Allen does. It’s too obvious to let go. Other than that, though; I really admire the fact that each character is created with a specific personality in mind, and that personality was personified into the perfect figure. Shion is supposed to be this naïve, innocent and pure, intelligent boy; so he was given white hair for purity, big eyes to represent his child like demeanor and good intentions, and dressed in comfortable, loose clothing to represent his comfortable and gentle character. Nezumi, on the other hand, was designed to be the exact opposite of that, given dark hair, sharp eyes, an d a dangerous smirk to represent his nickname as a “demon,” (Given by Inukashi.) Normally in a shounen, I look for the beauty in action scenes, which there weren’t very much of, unfortunately; but the setting and development of the anime as a whole along with the symbolism of the colors really fit the anime’s character and added to contrast. They tried really hard to make “No. 6” as pretty as possible in order to highlight the contradiction later on that accuses the city of being a living hell in its core. Overall, you can tell the art was looked at really well and carefully done. So for that, it gets a 9.
Sound-wise, I gave “No. 6” a 9, as well. All of the tracks were very beautiful, especially the OST. As you may know, the anime has a very sad nature behind it, along with a hidden sliver of hope; the composers of the music for this anime paid very much attention to this detail and the result was perfection in the OST. The ending, I thought, was very beautiful. Much better than the opening, anyways, which seems to be the only flaw I can find in the music. I can’t help but pull my hair out at the opening, which sounds like a child that just had throat surgery. It didn’t fit the anime and just didn’t do anything but cause annoyance. It’s a shame considering the first thing one hears when they open a new anime IS the opening.
Let me first point out that this anime had the perfect amount of characters. There weren’t too many or too little. Also, the main protagonists of “No. 6” were a couple of the best developed and most likeable characters I’ve ever seen in anime. Their interactions, if you ask me, made up most of the best moments in the anime. Their arguments, which were hiding their secret admiration for each other, were genius additions. A lot of hate has been given to Shion in particular, after reading some forum discussions, for being too clingy and dependent on his partner, Nezumi. I find this to be quite legitimate, though; mainly for the reason of character development and added contrast. Nezumi wanted to break away from Shion in fear of becoming weaker; Shion wanted to get closer to Nezumi in order to become stronger. Shion is sometimes useless, but, if necessary, he can do a complete 180 and will even murder somebody when someone insults Nezumi. There is only one character that conflicts me regarding her purpose, and that was Safu. I mean, yeah, he [Insert Spoiler here], but I just found her completely useless and as extra baggage that caused a lot of struggle character-wise.
Overall, I enjoyed this anime a lot. It may seem cliché, but I’m a sucker for subtle romance hints, yaoi or not. Also, my most favorite animes in the world are tearjerkers, like K, and FMA: Brotherhood, and D. Gray Man, etc. This anime definitely adds to that list. The ending brought tears to my eyes and if this was a score based off of pure enjoyment, I would give this anime a 10. Unfortunately, because of plot holes and obvious rushing in the plot due to major compression, I had to give the overall score a 9.
Sep 22, 2011
Whether you like it or not, bizarre things are present in our world and even in the world of anime. A certain phenomenon is where fanboys would most definitely hate it while some fangirls would find it cute and entertaining. For others, they wouldn’t care much in which is also the group I happened to be with. So let’s just cut to the chase and say Shounen-ai, or Boys’ Love, or Yaoi (whichever term you prefer) happened to be a running theme in this series. Not as exaggerated as a pure Shounen-ai anime would be, it sure does have bromantic moments and gay innuendos running about. Although it is very obvious that homosexuality took some part, it could be considered more of a bonus or an add-on since the main story doesn’t need the drive of the two main male protagonists’ romantic moments to get going. As such and unlike others have repeatedly done so, I won’t criticize on how the anime had a marmite theme but instead on how it handled its execution.
No. 6 is a dystopian community encased within a wall outside of which is a vast and a boundless wasteland. It shelters a mysterious home called the Twilight House where senile individuals are taken, and a correctional facility centered in the city structured as a beehive. Citizens of No. 6 use bracelets for identification and as an access to almost everything the program of No. 6 allows, while a shady organization under the government works as law enforcers and even act as the law itself. With this mysterious organization controlling everything, people must abide by the rules by all means to avoid being disposed of, sent to the correctional facility, or be thrown outside the walls to a place unknown by any denizens of No. 6, the harsh and dangerous wastelands.
With an anime that has this very intriguing and fascinating setting, as a regular anime viewer, you could easily find yourself impressed. With great ideas at its very introduction and the curiosity to know how the world of No. 6 works, a viewer would normally watch more and more with high expectations until those expectations were met. With confidence that you are definitely interested, let’s delve in deeper into No. 6 and take a look at its main cast.
Shion, one of the main protagonists has been living inside No. 6 for his whole life. When he was in school, it was noted that he was one of the best in his class but is somewhat dense about relationships, which was noted when a friend confronts him about it. He loves his mom and would earnestly help anyone who is in need. When he was still a kid, he met a mysterious boy who goes by the name Nezumi (which means Rat) who is being hunted down by the authorities. As a good-willed person, Shion treats his injuries even though he knew that what he’s doing was against the law. He was then interrogated by the authorities and a huge 4 year time leap occured.
The next thing that was seen is Shion now working for the government who believes is a peace-loving, caring and ultimately a perfect community. That is until his beliefs were shattered by witnessing a horrifying traumatic incident. As a witness to this incident, he was immediately blacklisted, pursued by authorities with the intention of disposing of him. Remembering what Shion did for him 4 years ago, Nezumi helped him escape the authorities. Although able to escape, he is now considered as an outlaw who cannot go back to No. 6, preventing him from seeing his mother. Then, he discovered how harsh No. 6 and reality is.
As a premise, I need to say that it had baffled me for throwing so much within just 2 episodes. It had weird things happening, how No. 6 works and the organization behind it, and even that huge time leap where nothing was explained which could even make you think if it’s really the correct series you are watching. Although puzzling, it could easily manage to tickle your fancy to at least hope for a good ending. Unfortunately, the interest was halted for about 7 episodes. Albeit there was a tad bit of progress in the storyline, most of these were pointless and are mostly rotating around the insignificant side characters. Knowing more about the other characters could be worthwhile, but then No. 6 is set to run only within 11 episodes, thus doubts and fears of a rushed conclusion arise.
After the introductory episodes, for 7 episodes all Shion along with Nezumi did was increase their relationship points, meet new uninteresting sidekicks, cause trouble to Inukashi (Dogkeeper) and resolve it right away within the same episode, and simply just have fun. Within these, there were certain parts that would make you think that it will contribute to the awaited conclusion of the story but in the end didn’t really affect the outcome. Characters were introduced that barely had any lines and some were introduced to emphasize an important point, while others seemed to have been produced just for the sake of having a character.
As an anime that relies on its potentially interesting storyline, character interactions should not be the number one priority. Much worse is that the characters, even if they had some meaningful dialogues and roles, were barely known of, leading to very minimal viewer sympathy and likability. With the exception of two, all the characters were just cardboard cut-outs which always had a feisty and a very annoying nature. Shion and Nezumi on the other hand had remarkable development; Shion became a less ignorant factual being rather than a theoretical person, while Nezumi understood the nature of humans more. Sadly, even if the character portrayal was done amazingly still it wouldn’t affect the lackluster story as a whole.
At episode 10, the anime which had halted finally realized that it had only 1 more episode for the finale, thus it now moved hastily. For an anime which had only 11 episodes to expose everything, one could conclusde that this will require a deus ex machina to resolve everything, and in the end it really did. Blatantly contrived plot points were seen, character importance were questioned, and the ending obviously didn’t make any sense. A lot of viewers felt trolled for getting their hopes up, and I got to admit that I was one too.
With how No. 6 handled its premise, you can easily tell that it’s an anime with a lot of potential and at the same time screams out to be something different compared to the norms. It tries to incorporate something unusual into something which we are used to just to make it different, but that’s all that it is, it is different and nothing more. I enjoyed it at most, with an opening song that sounds weird but later on gets catchy, and with a brilliant top-tier animation, and add up that interesting premise, it really had potential. Suffice to say it was supposed to be good, but just because of the ending it was all ruined. All this could be blamed onto the anime’s very limited 11 episode span and to the team behind this. So BONES, please don’t castrate all the good anime, I beg of you. That being said, let’s try answering the question we asked at the beginning.
After all’s been said and done, is the light of No. 6 worth seeing at the end of the tunnel?
In this case, the 'light' is nothing more than an oncoming locomotive, ravaging all along its wake and ultimately producing what you would call a trainwreck.
*Special thanks to Blind_Guardian for the final editing. read more
Sep 18, 2011
It does have quirky moments though and the relationship between the two main characters tugs at your heart a few times. You even get a few kisses as well (for all the boy-love fans out there). However, even though there are kisses, this anime is not Shounen Ai. I would say more 'bromance' than boy love. It's more about their 'bond' and the feeling of surviving for the people who mean the most to them - as Nezumi slowly learns from Shion.
The negatives would be: Nezumi's singing and cross-dressing hobbies, the gender of Dogkeeper (that is still a mystery to this day), the random unnecessary side characters and the sci-fi elements can be confusing, at times. Also, towards the end, things tend to go a bit crazy with the fantasy side of things. There were a lot of questionable moments that I feel are probably better described in the novel(?). I think that the anime could have done without the crazy-fantasy moments but I still enjoyed it just the same and overall every anime has their bad points and these did not alter in my final score.
From watching this I can compare this to Wolf's Rain and Romeo+Juliet. Not that the plot is the same but the feeling you get while watching this is the same. If you've seen both those animes you can probably relate to where I'm coming from. The drama is dark and there are a lot of political secrets, death, action/fighting and blood spillage but at the same time you have this hope from the main characters that everything is going to be alright, as long as they are together.
BONES, once again, lives up to their reputation with their animations; outstanding! Although, they also live up to their other reputation for choosing the odd plot series and some-what unsatisfying endings. And when I say "unsatisfying" I mean: sure the main goal is achieved, but at what cost? One cannot achieve their goal without sacrifice.
All 'n all, I love this anime for the action and the animations. It's even one of my top 5 favourites.
Dec 2013: Revisiting my review: I watched this when it was airing and fell into the new-season-hype with everyone else. A few years later and I still enjoy it just as much as I did the first time watching it. Highly recommended. read more
Jul 17, 2013
I do have to say, the main reason I wanted to watch this show was because it was recommended as a yaoi anime. But in all entirety, it's not really all that yaoish. Yeah, the main characters are the intended couple, but this is more of a story than a yaoi anime. So, even though I was disappointed in that area, it turned out to be a great story all together with amazing characters. I really could not stop watching once I had actually started.
Story - 10 - The story, though somewhat...unoriginal with the post apocalyptic background, turns out to be something different than most in that genre. When I had first started watching, I was a little confused in the beginning, but as the story carried on, it began to make more sense. The mystery of the background of the city and the people unravel with each episode. I really was blown away but the events that occurred and many of the twists and turns the plot seemed to take.
Art - 10 - Though, looking rather common in modern art styles, for some reason, the eyes seem to catch...well, your eye. I have to say that that was what really pulled me into the art. The amount of detailed put into one small part really sold me. And when you take all the other bits, it looks just as stunning. Everything shows effort and focus, even though it was a short series, the artists made EVERY episode count with it's beautiful art and style.
Sound - 10 - The music was always soothing or seemed to fit in with the idea of the show, I always found myself listening to both the opening and ending themes, though I often usually skip those when watching anime. The voices were also well done, I can say for both the English and the Japanese. I had watched halfway through the anime in Japanese, stopped for some unknown reason and when I decided to pick the anime up again, I decided to watch it in English this time around. The actors, in both, put a lot of effort into their acting. Though, there were times when I felt that the English lacked a certain emotion, I have to admit that I felt the same way with the Japanese at times. But overall, it turned out rather nicely.
Character - 10 - Now, since most people think this is yaoi, there is bound to be a Seme and Uke character. Turns out that there is neither. Sure, at first it seems that way, but the two main characters, Nezumi (Rat) and Shion, both showcase their own traits that of neither of these categories. The character development, or rather, reveal-ment for Rat, is stunning and really makes you want to know more, of not only the characters but of the backstory of these characters. Many times during the anime, I often questioned some actions the characters did and later on, after these actions were explained, it either left me satisfied or mind-blown by the reasons. Every little turn in this left me wanting to know more.
Enjoyment - 10 - I have to say, that I thoroughly enjoyed it. Even though I had watched it for the soul purpose of yaoi, it lacked it with many other animes. But it made up for that disappointment with story and characters. Everything was so drawing, that I couldn't help but be entranced by much of the events that happened. I found myself not caring for the lack of yaoi and just enjoyed the ride of the amazing plot.
Overall, I have to say that this is a fairly good anime and deserves a chance by many. To those who love a good story that can make you laugh and cry, this is highly recommended. And to those few yaoi fans who like maybe a little fluff, this is great for you. It's lovely and very heart-warming, though, be warned, it is also heart-wrenching as well. I have to say, I found myself crying at the end, though, I am a sab for stuff like this too. So my opinion on the cry and sad bits might be over-exaggerated. read more
Sep 29, 2011
Yes not much action in the middle episodes, and yes some characters on a first look might just seem filling. But if you look closer it's not so.
This isn't an action anime. It actually addresses many issues about what is is to be human, how we can evolve or not, how we make our own place in the world and most importantly how we deal and interact with others that come into our lives even for just a few minutes...
I also see nothing wrong with the ending, I thought it was magnificent.
And i strongly disagree with the comment that Nezumi and Shion had no effect on the outcome. Quite the contrary, in my interpretation what they did and said in the machine room changed what was going to happen and all episodes (how meaningless they seem to some ) build the interactions and feelings of all the characters in that scene, in that moment. read more
Sep 15, 2011
The first three episodes of the show were really interesting. Not fantastic, but enough to get me excited. There's a strong sense of mystery pervading the first episode: Why is this kid being pursued? What's that thing in the center of the city making a strange noise, one that causes those that hear it to listen in seeming awe and reverence? The second episode continues to add questions, while starting up the plot proper as prettyboy Nezumi helps hero Shion escape No. 6 before Shion can be taken to the Ministry of Love. Excuse me, I meant the Correctional Facility. The third episode gives us our look outside the city, so we can see a town built from freedom and poverty, distinct from the strict control of the supposed utopia beyond the walls. At the end of episode 3, Nezumi, who has stated his disgust at No. 6, promises to reveal to Shion why he hates Shion's former home, and why Shion should too.
And then episode 4 comes, and we get nothing. Then episode 5 comes, and we get nothing. Episode 6? Nope. Episode 7? Still nothing. The show spins its wheels for four episodes, and Nezumi and Shion's interactions in each episode can be summed up like this:
Nezumi: I hate No. 6! I want to destroy it!
Nezumi: I'll tell you later!
Shion: I love you, Nezumi.
Nezumi: I hate you because you love No. 6!
Shion: Why should I hate it?
Nezumi: I'll tell you later!
And so on. Eventually, something happens that causes them to actually decide to get off their asses and finally do something. This is episode 8. There are only 3 episodes left after this. They spend this episode seeing a guy who helped build the city, and getting answers from him. Why Nezumi didn't take Shion to him as soon as possible and keep the plot going is beyond me. We do learn some very important things this episode, though! Namely, the government of No. 6 is actually... evil! This was in no way obvious based on the previous seven episodes, and is a giant shock to everybody. We also learn about something called Elyurias, but what that actually is isn't explained yet.
The next bit will be a bit spoilerish. It shouldn't be too hard to guess the basics of what happens, but if you're really picky about avoiding spoilers you'll want to skip ahead, or stop reading and go do something that isn't watching this show.
The final three episodes end by showing a staggering display of incompetence by every single character and organization in the show (save for one, although that character is basically lucky). Nezumi and Shion infiltrate the Correctional Facility by the dumbest luck ever. Had things gone slightly not their way, they would have died instantly the second they entered the building. They wouldn't know where they should even be going in this place if it wasn't for a magic voice inside Shion's head. The guards of the supposedly secure facility are dispatched with ease by the two infiltrators. And then when Shion and Nezumi finally get to where they were going, the person they were trying to save has freed herself just fine thanks to the previously-mentioned magic voice. A resistance movement within No. 6 tries to do something, but they just kinda set off some bombs and talk to no one in particular. Random eco-magic destroys No. 6, everyone who survived is happy, or something. We don't learn much of anything, and just when we think we might we get a huge slap in the face for thinking that we should know what the hell we just watched.
Those of you who pay close attention to the plot may notice that nothing Shion and Nezumi do actually affects it. They don't destroy No. 6, they don't save the West District, they don't save the person they were supposed to save, they don't save the innocents in No. 6 from the danger they're in. (The last one in particular was what Shion really focused on trying to do, before the show forgot that he was supposed to do that.) Everything that the heroes try to accomplish is done for them, and had Shion and Nezumi not been in the show, the plot would have been exactly the same. (I suppose there's one thing Nezumi does to help take down No. 6 at the very end, but nothing in the anime canon is preventing the one person who actually did anything useful from doing that as well. There's a reason for it in the manga, but the anime contradicts that reason.)
Character development was just as teasing as the plot. Sure, the relationship between Shion and Nezumi was cute, and the world needs more romances that don't make a big deal about the gender of the participants, but it didn't go much of anywhere. We'd watch Shion and Nezumi say the same things, and maybe kiss a couple times. It goes over better than the plot, since at least you know what's going on between the two, but still, it could have progressed a lot faster and gone a lot deeper. (I'd bet Nezumi would not have any problems going really deep into Shion's... feelings.)
At least the art looked nice, and the music wasn't so weird as to be completely distracting. I think that I'll probably remember the music most fondly, not because it was particularly amazing, but just because it was really strange. Also, Safu is the best character and I wish she'd be in the show more. (Apparently she has an expanded role in the anime compared to the novels, and considering how little she's involved in the anime...) Unfortunately, that isn't nearly enough to make this worth anyone's time, not when you could be reading the novels. Or Brave New World. Or 1984. Or watching Steins;Gate. Or Lucky Star. Or Blue's Clues. (At least you got to know the answers to the mystery at the end of each episode.)
(Update: Someone informed me that No. 6 is considered to be a novel, not a light novel. I've changed that up above. I've seen conflicting information about this, though, but this change hopefully will still make sense. If it doesn't, just pretend I said 'book' each time I said 'novel'. If that still doesn't work for you, replace it with whatever you want.) read more
Jul 29, 2011
Firstly, although only four episodes in, there are some definite Shonen Ai hints. We still have some more episodes to go before it is confirmed, but it is most definitely on the cards. So do not watch if you aren't into that kind of thing. If not, do try this, it makes for interesting character (and comical) interaction and relationship. (Sometimes even married couple like)
Now onto the main story, set in the near future in a Dystopia. (Google is your friend) Which follows Sion and Nezumi(Rat)'s story that investigates the mysteries of an area inside the Dystopia called NO.6. I will not go into the story too much, as I will just be repeating the synopsis already on here and on the other reviews. Though I will say that it is worth it to bare with the slow-ish episodes- It will undoubtedly pick up.
The art is pretty, like all bones series, the opening is pretty to look at. At first I hated the song choice, but it has started to grow on me, although I wouldn't listen to it actively on on Ipod. The ending I find much better and was perfect for the mood in the last scene of episode 4 and I have a feeling it will be used at some point again in the same way. Background music is good and used appropriately. Nothing special, but adds to the scene.
The contrast between the two characters is clear from the start and the opening does a great job at portraying this. Well done Bones! The relationship between the two characters and the plot both seem to be of equal importance. What I like best is the realisticness of the two main characters, especially Nezumi's. This is rare and I find it quite refreshing. Although Sion's character can come across as irritating at points. A third notable character is Safu, Sion's female best friend, who you could say is his heterosexual love interest who is in love with him. Who I don't personally take to nor does she contribute much to the series thus so far. Interested to see if this changes.
Enjoyment is pretty high surprisingly. It is unlike most series you will come across and although I don't see it becoming the next smash-hit anime. It is a unique anime which is different from all the mainstream animes you have seen cloned many time. And the Shonen Ai subcontext adds to the story in a way that most Anime shy away from. Good for you, no.9! I will be watching to see how the series progresses. And so should you. Now, go watch! :)! read more
Oct 31, 2011
Watching the next batch of episodes had me hooked because there was so many things going on with Shion and Nezumi, both apart and together, plus the background of No. 6 and how it got the way it is. The horrible acts committed by them et al. I thought I was in for a good treat. And on top of it all, the two male characters were falling in love, not just some boy love teasers some animes throw out to bait Yaoi fans into watching. I've always wanted to watch an action anime where the male leads fall for each other but it isn't a drama or romance show. Mirage of Blaze is the only other anime I can think of that was action and yaoi. So I was on cloud nine.
However, somewhere along the way the show lost focus and had no idea what it was going to do with the characters or the No.6 city itself. It begins to trip and falter and just does not know how to pick itself up. The characters essentially become cardboard cut outs and just placed in scenes and seem to not really do anything.
For example, Shion and Nezumi seem to have conflict about their viewpoints on how No. 6 should be handled with people dying. Nezumi wishes to destroy the city while Shion wants to save the people. Yet neither character does anything about it. Then the writers tried to focus on the female character (I forgot her name) the girl who was in love with Shion. But they have no idea what to even do with her by this point, it's just her walking around thinking about Shion, then when she decides to do something she gets taken.
So I'm thinking, fine, I guess this will cause Shion to act and maybe cause some tension between he and Nezumi. And they do act by going to save her. Meanwhile, the story takes a whole new focus on these forest people and alluding to the girl and Nezumi having a connection. But this goes NO WHERE!
The connection between Shion's mother being one of the creators of No.6 goes NO WHERE
The Radical group who wants to take down No. 6 from the inside, goes NO WHERE
Finding out why or how No.6 turned out the way it did, goes NO WHERE
I tried to figure out what was happening here with this show that started out so good and the only thing I got is that the show lacked a human villain. When you have a city or institution as the villain, having a personification of the city would help. After all who is behind the city? Who is the one giving the orders for these terrible acts to take place? Sure Nezumi and Shion are fighting against the city, but who is the one they have to beat? Who does the radical group have to go after to free themselves of No.6?
So yeah, the writers try to solve this glaring issue by making the girl who loves Shion into a magical forest goddess that they have to beat. *eye roll*
Then at the ending when everything seems so bleak the girl transforms into a large magical bee and destroys the city walls with bee tornado for Shion because having him do it himself would take more episodes than they were willing to write. She also grants instant life with her LGBT rainbow powers then float away with her magical bees.
Yes an action Scifi post apocalyptic anime transforms into a fantasy magical anime at the end.
By this time I am just watching for Shion and Nezumi's love story. But I'm given NOTHING but a second kiss on the lips and the characters deciding to part ways for unexplained reasons. Honestly, I would had been better off just watching the first episode and just using my own imagination to come up with what happens.
Sep 11, 2011
Having watched the last episode, I am a little bit disappointed in No.6, perhaps simply on account of the ending. Though the last episode hastily ties up most of the plot points to a watchable conclusion, it fails to truly explain some of the story background, such as the exact nature of No.6, the role of Sion`s mother Karan, the exact purposes and extent of the resistance led by Yoming (and whether, given this is a fansub, is actually his name) and who in god`s name the Forest Blokes are. At the end of the road, it seems as if the destination was not worth the journey. As an anime with only 11 episodes, there is some reason to forgive No. 6 for its rushed ending and the inability to tie out many plot points, but it`s still a little disappointing to see a story that had great, great potential end up merely good. I wouldn`t say it renders No. 6 unwatchable, but it prevents it from reaching its full potential. read more
Sep 25, 2011
The two characters are supposedly gaybones for each other.
No. 6 is a beautifully animated series by Studio Bones, who also gave us Full Metal Alchemist and Soul Eater. It is based on a series of light novels and should be known for its literary allusions and dystopian undertones. However, though the potential for an intelligent sci-fi anime is there, it is never fully realised.
Even in the light novels the plot seems rather dodgy, indecisive on whether it wants to focus on mythology or science as a basis for the series. As such it is an awkward blend of both, which is similar in its effectiveness as trying to force two like-poles of a magnet together.
This is the telling fault line in the foundation of the entire premise, and it is not alone. The stereotypical image of a sci-fi fan, wearing their Star Trek uniform and watching Babylon 5, does not meld well with the idea of romance, let alone boys' love, in general; especially as what romantic interaction there is between the two mains feels wedged in as an afterthought. While the original novels integrated the romance in alongside the development of the plot - making this a case of adaption decay - it is still ultimately these conflicting ideas that weaken the show at its heart. If the series leaned more towards a more mythical slant I believe that what shounen-ai there is would have been melded into the plot a lot more naturally, as historically mythology has never been shy of contraversial pairings between its characters.
The plot itself is rather badly adapted overall: this is one if those shows you have to read up on to understand exactly what has happened. Possibly this is a case of the show being compressed so much, but after reading the summary of the last volume (which I can't recommend enough - http://hiriajuu.livejournal.com/7568.html) it seems that Studio Bones apparently, like many of the characters, had a stroke, and decided to make shit up. Overall the gaps are too great for the average viewer to try and guess what's going on, and the composition of the series feels very inconsistent episode to episode. It just left me with a slightly annoyed feeling afterwards. However, if you're a softcore sci-fi fan or hardcore BL nerd with the imagination to fill in the gaps, perhaps this won't be much of an issue for you.
Whereas the characters themselves are compelling, in theory, (the dreamy boy genius, exiled tsundere with a ponytail, as well as a journalist-turned-pimp and a dogkeeper whose gender you will spend more time pondering than the actual intricacies of the plot), but in practice the characterisation is inconsistent and at sometimes enough to make you wonder if the characters have had strokes. One minute Nezumi and Sion are getting along fine, the next they're arguing, the next they're...dancing?
Though there is the fan emphasis on the shounen-ai elements, if you go into this show on that merit alone, you will be sorely disappointed. Though there are one or two signs of affection between the two male leads, Nezumi and Sion, as a romance it is sorely unfulfilling and as mentioned before, the motivations of the two are unclear at best and agonizingly OOC at worst. The ending, without giving any spoilers, doesn't improve on anything.
But not all is terrible about this show. The voice acting is quite good; notably, Sion's seiyuu does a fantastic job at tormented screams of pain. The other character's voices fit them well and I have no qualms here.
The saving grace of this series is the animation: it is stunningly pretty. The character designs are unique enough, but it is the backgrounds that are truly beautiful. Especially detailed are the iconic buildings, representing the cold, steeled nature of the city itself.
The music used was atmospheric and appropriate for the scene, as were the opening and ending songs, though the ending animation felt rather out-of-place and as the series went on, I began to openly resent its abrupt intrusion into the story. I really enjoyed the croaky vocals of the OP and would probably download it to listen to; the rest, not so much.
Many people will watch this series and, much as I did earlier, pontificate on if, why and how shounen-ai /BL/homosexuality belongs in a sci-fi setting. So it is ironic that No. 6's biggest weakness is the same as science fiction's greatest shortcoming.
No. 6's biggest defect is not the huge gaps in storytelling nor the compression of source material to fit it into five and a half hours of anime - though these are glaring - but the fact that, ultimately, No. 6 feels cold. As cold the metallic buildings and swathes of blue we see in the very first moments of the opening; as cold as the hearts of the people that run the city. Though the characters were smart, cute, at times funny, I felt no emotional connection to them after the show ended. The question is not, 'can sci-fi be gay too?' but 'can sci-fi cultivate a romance, of any orientation? Can sci-fi make me emphathise with the characters even if there is a complicated plot and futuresque setting?'
For No. 6, the answer is no. read more
Sep 23, 2013
The story is basically about a utopian society called No. 6. The story basically centers around two teenage named Nezumi and Shion. Now, like all utopian societies, this one holds major unseen flaws. Though it is not mentioned, this is a sorta shonen ai type of anime. However, the story does not revolve very much around that aspect of the anime, so for those who do not care for it, do not worry. Just ignore it and keep watching.
The story of the anime started out with good promise. It starts out with Shion, the protagonist with a high level IQ, who has a fateful meeting with a boy named Nezumi. After allowing Nezumi to stay the night, Shion's high class life is brought to an end as he is banished from his district. Years later, Shion directly encounters the utopia's dark secret and is nearly euthanized for his discovery. In an encounter of fate, Nezumi comes to the rescue and saves Shion. The former then introduces him to the true face of No. 6. The story venters around the theme of humanity, and ignorance. Is ignorance good? What is a person willing to sacrafice their beliefs for? What can revenge do? Is there anything more important than that? At the start of the series, the story was well rounded, but as it moved on, plot holes were formed, and problems were created then left. The plot became too rushed and confusing.
The art and animation at the beginning of the series was presented neatly and without a hitch. However, as the story moved along, the animation and art got sloppy and at the most crucial moments of the story. The opening and the ending are extremely good. They are some of the best songs that I have heard so far. The opening and ending have that sort of tone that fits the story perfectly. Both melancholy and hopeful. Prior to watching this series I had no idea how beautiful a voice Yoshimasa Hosoya had.
The plot focused mainly on the two main protagonists and very little on supporting characters. However, because the plot focused so much on them, their presence became more interesting. It felt like a daily/weekly routine in a sense that seeing them in every episode made my day. In all honesty, when I was watching the series, I did not care at all for what anyone on the show did or said except for Shion and Nezumi. The main protagonists are the only characters that are worth watching on the show. The supporting characters leave no desire or lust to see them. The development of the two main characters and how they progress as a result of each others actions is a sight to see. Up until the very end, their development has been the pinnical of the series.
I relatively enjoyed the first few episodes of the anime. However as the series went on, the story line became a bit more ridiculous. The last few episodes were some of the biggest disapointments the series has to offer. It's like when the cafeteria is serving your favorite food, but when you get to the front of the line NOTHING IS THERE. It's just that disappointing.
After watching the anime, I turned my attention to the manga, and the manga provided so much more insight on the events than the anime and it angered me so much because this anime could have been extremely good, but because so many key events and details were skipped, the story line practically jumped off a cliff. read more
Nov 3, 2011
I would have enjoyed it much more if it had been longer than eleven episodes, but in the end it turned out okay.
I liked how different the characters where compared to each other, and I enjoyed their different reactions to what was being said.
Overall, I though it was a great anime, and I would love to watch it again. read more
Jul 16, 2013
I admit: I only decided to watch the anime because I had seen fanart of Shion x Rat and thought they were an adorable pairing. But when I actually got down to watching it, I realized it was so much more than that, and hardly even revolved around romance (let alone yaoi).
Normally, it’ll take me at least a week to finish even a short anime. Yet I was so infatuated with No. 6 that I watched all 11 episodes in one day. I watched the English dub since I’m too lazy to read subs, and although the dubbing was nothing extraordinary I can’t say it was horrible overall. Besides, I focused on the plot and characters instead.
Overall, a majority of the characters were developed fabulously. I am particularly in love with Rat- his story, his personality… I also absolutely adore Dog Keeper. Certainly one of my favorite characters. The only character I could not bring myself to like was Safu. Nonetheless, I’m perfectly content with how the story ended for her.
I enjoyed the sprinkle of romance included; how it didn’t overpower the plot, without leaving the viewer completely disappointed with the lack of it. Although I personally would have loved to see Rat and Shion be admittedly in love, I’m totally content with how their relationship actually was. (Another couple I would have loved to see form is Dog Keeper and Rikiga, but I’m sure that’s a very unpopular opinion.) As for the ending… It gave me a chance to dry my tears, I’ll say that much. It was far from a fairytale happy ending, but still not so tragic that it hurt. Yes, I would have liked to know what happened next, yet it ended in a good place. Perhaps it’s a good thing to be uninformed of, for example, what becomes of the baby left in Shion’s care, or if Shion and Rat ever do meet again. The viewer can be free to assume whatever they’d like, and that’s a good thing.
Overall: I’d rate it an 8.5/10, maybe even a 9. Despite only being 11 episodes, I don’t think the plot was rushed at all, and the story successfully completed itself. I would highly recommend this anime for anyone into the idea of futuristic dystopians, and prepared to shed a few tears. read more
Sep 16, 2011
Anime follows the story of Sion, who lives in a perfect, utopian society of city called No.6, and Nezumi, who falls the victim of authorities ruling mentioned town. Two boys join forces to discover the truth about about the city, as well as themselves.
As you can see, what we deal with is a dystopian society - perfect at first glimpse, but rotten at the core. On the other side we have people living ouside the city - animals spending their lives in the slums. At that point No. 6 breaks typical sci-fi convention - in films like Equilibrium or Book of Eli, those who oppose the system are good, almost bleached out guys. In No.6, it's the choice between being happy, but manipulated, or constantly in danger, but free.
Sion and Nezumi spend their days in the latter part of the world. Surrounded by violence, rape and filth the're getting more and more drawn to each other.
This way we got to the strongest part of the show - character developemet. Both boys are sensitive and inteligent, as a contrast to a harsh world surrounding them. Still, it's not flat. Nezumi, natural-born badass, likes poetry (if you like finding tropes in anime, you'll be in heaven). Sion, a full-heart pacifist and humanist can punch a guy in the face. Besides, Nezumi confronting Sion is a big clash of ideologies. It's really great to watch as they try to explain each other their point of view, and how the other one reacts. Both of them, treir relationship, how certain things slowly change their personality, is a piece of well done, deep character developement.
Not to mention solid, interesting bacground characters.
Art, Sound and Setting
There is not much of "music" in No. 6. Soundtracks played in background are not someting that touch your heart and makes you think "I love that track! Need to hear it more!" but they create the atmosphere nicely. However, I have to mention beautiful elegies sung by several characters. Quality of art in the show is good, there are scenes with bad animation, but sudden drop of quality between highly appealing scenes is something common in recent anime's. The overal look of characters is nice to watch, and bg are rich.
As or the setting, some scenes, like dialouges, ale played flawless, which is great for a series full of it, but other scenes seem to be a little bit too rushed (especially most lyrical ones). I think that is beacuse the series is too short, and director still tried to make it a little bit more metaphisical.
No. 6 was great, touching story to watch. It gets strange at the end, but still I highly reccomend to watch it.
Oct 23, 2011
Stupidly naive boy is kicked out of an artificial paradise city, lives with a pretty bad-boy in a refugee ghetto. Confusing situations ensue.
The story is all over the place. It spends too much time on things that are proven to be unimportant in the end, it uses cheap tricks and gimmicks and leaves behind a plot so ridden with holes it feels like eating Swiss cheese. I kind of wonder, what sort of audience is this aimed at? It has far too little yaoi to appeal to the boys’ love club. It is not nearly science fiction-y enough to appeal to the scifi buffs. It has too little action to classify as a typical shonen.
Frankly, I was bored most of the time. I did exercise my mind by pointing out the logical inconsistencies so that must count for something, like fighting against Alzheimer's in my old age. Also, it does not help that we have a faceless sort of threatening enemy doing largely illogical things like trashing the refugees' slum city, taking prisoners, driving them to prison and then executing them. I mean, why not just kill them then and there? My brain, it hurts.
Most anime who fail the story test can still reclaim some viewing enjoyment from well fleshed out characters. Not so here.
Shion is supposed to be the main character but he is so frigging useless I kind of wonder why are all the other characters so enamoured of him. I get it, he is supposed to be the embodiment of kindness and altruism in a jaded society so that he draws others in like a white light. In theory. In practice he is so annoyingly stupid I really wanted to put his head to the meat grinder and feed him to my cat.
Nezumi is the bad boy who rescues him—and the love interest, you should know. For 2/3 of the anime he is the standard “abusive attractive asshole”. Hey, at least he does interesting stuff and he's not stupid—much.
Safu is Shion’s childhood friend and has a crush on him. Hmm, looks like someone didn't get the memo. Safu the beard spends a lot of time mooning over her love that never was and in the end proves to be a plot device.
Of all the other secondary characters—who are all as useful to the plot as a third leg—I mostly liked the Dog Lender. I felt that this character embodied the spirit of the refugee camp and had the most consistent character development.
I was going to say that the animation was average but then I realised that recent anime have really spoiled us with attractive graphics. Five years ago this would have been spectacular despite a slight dipping in quality here and there. So, it is quite good without breaking new ground. Especially the characters, they are very fluidly animated.
The music is a bit jarring at times. There are some ballads and slow tunes that really don't fit the post-apocalyptical scenery. A show like this needs DJ Space Beats and his fluorescent synthesiser.
OP: Beautiful. Lovely animation and lovely, ethereal song.
ED: Slow ballad that failed to move me in any way.
Every theme in this anime has been covered by a much better show. If it is yaoi you be wanting, you can find more titillating stuff. If it is post-apocalyptic science-fiction you be wanting there is Ergo Proxy. If it is natural mysticism you be wanting there is Miyazaki. Really, there is no reason for you to watch this.
Jan 7, 2014
I just finished No.6 and I was blown away by what I say. When I first read the summary I was very skeptical about it but am so happy that I gave it a chance.
Story - 9: The story is told in a utopia/distopia type of scenario and was able to capture the feel perfectly. You start off seeing this perfect place and slowly start to find the faults that lie underneath. You get pulled into the story because of how easy it is to see the human condition in it. The ending does come on a little fast, but the series needed that since it is only 11 episodes. If there were a few more episodes, then I think the ending would have been that much more, but overall it was a good ending with most of the strings tied up.
Art - 8: This is the only area that I fault the anime somewhat. Overall the art was good, but there were moments were something was a little weird if you looked at it hard enough. The backgrounds were very detailed and beautiful and the colors were vibrant when they needed to be.
Sound - 9: The OP was a little odd for me. When I intially watched it was not impressed, and I usually like to watch the OP to get a feel for the anime. The singing was very strange and not what I am used to. Although, it completely fit the feel of the anime. Nazumi's singing was beautiful to listen to. I especially enjoyed the song he sings while captured in the trucks. It was very well done! The ED was absolutely beautiful, as well. Again it fit the anime perfectly but was a complete opposite from the OP. Also, on some episodes the ED music would start during the last few scenes and provide that perfect, smooth transition from the anime itself to the ED. I would highly recommend having subtitles for the ED as well so that you can relate the words back to the series.
Character - 10: The characters are amazing. Sion is that very naive boy when you first start out and slowly starts to grow up in front of your eyes. By the end of the series you don't even know if it is the same person since he has changed so much. Nazumi comes off cool, calm, and collected but as the story unfolds you get to see his softer side. He slowly opens up to Sion and their relationship grows. Yes, there is a shounen-ai characteristic to their relationship but it is not flaunted in every episode. Sometimes you could say they were merely close friends while other times they come off boys-love. I personally like BL anime so I had no problem with it. Even if you don't normally go for that type of theme, I believe that you would be able to get past it because of all the other wonderful aspects of No. 6.
Enjoyment - 10: I thoroughly enjoyed everything about this anime. I was drawn in from the beginning and couldn't wait to click on the next episode. I watched this entire series in one night and was so glad I did. Watching it all together allowed for me to emerse myself in the series and really get attached to the characters - not that that is hard to do. By the last episode I found myself crying and wishing that things would turn out positive for Sion and Nazumi.
Overall - 10: This is the first anime I have ever rated as a 10/10 but I think that No. 6 deserves it. The story is captivating and draws you in. The characters are so believable that you can't help but root for them. The music is very good and fits the anime perfectly. I believe that almost anyone could enjoy this anime - despite your normal preference in genre.
So, there you have it - my first review! read more
Jul 24, 2012
- Contains a highly suggestive (nay, canon), meaningful, and wonderfully crafted relationship between two men.
-There's no face to the bad side in this story.
- Convoluted storyline that tried to juggle a post apocalyptic false utopia and magical forest shenanigans in 11 episodes.
- Imbalance in character development. Some side characters are more fleshed out than main characters.
Well, that was a nice summation of what I'd like to discuss. Let me start with the bad stuff.
The storyline in this anime is horrendous. As soon as they start weaving in complications into the story, I threw in the towel. No.6 threw crisp, polished, and frightening social views and technological and historical progression at us, only to end this story on a note that contributes nothing to the original premise - Rather it's this glorified idea of unity and status and - goodness - the magic of the earth or some shit like that. It was hard to follow the amount of pure BS that was overflowing on my screen since episode 8/9. If you're someone who doesn't buy easily into sketchy plot twists, you would be turned off rather quickly.
Another BIG BAD THING, is that the anime sends a worrying and highly flawed message. When talked about, No.6 always comes off as this big and evil single entity that sucks from the earth to create a false positive. That, my friends, is wrong. No.6's GOVERNMENT is the one behind the lies and cruelty, not the whole city. The show often talks down to the city's citizens, whose biggest crime is essentially ignorance. They are innocent people who are at best lying to themselves about the state of the city, and at worst are utterly spoiled by its lies. Either way, their crimes are nothing to be vary of. Yet the show, when mentioning No.6 as a single evil entity includes its citizens in that description, essentially creating this philosophical idea about greed, which puts the citizens in an equally bad spot as the people running the city.
What then happens, is that deaths of innocent people are being glorified to support a flawed idea about greed, environment, and industrialization, and leaves a bad taste in your mouth. By giving a face to the city, a Big Bad (which existed in the manga, making it the superior version in more ways than one), I as the viewer would know where to point fingers, and the whole message would make more sense, if only to a certain point. Alas, that doesn't exist.
Final MEH thing, is Safu. Honestly, I don't know what's her point. I mean, she felt like she HAD a point, but it was never made. That was a big problem. Safu was written as an important, front-row character, yet we know more about her grandmother than we do about her. We know more about Inukashi that we know about her. She's left out to play a love interest yet is not a love interest like, at all, and in the end was the most useless scapegoat I have ever seen. Safu was an utter disappointment of a character, and I wish they either gave her a normal storyline, or didn't make a big thing out of her in the first place.
Now to the GOOD STUFF!
First off, no matter what anyone tells you, the relationship between Nezumi and Shion is hardly EVER fan service. I will take that to my grave, people.
Yes, the amount of times Nezumi and Shion share a cutesy moment together is a bit hard to count, since it's the main thing in focus. But, even so, every interaction has a meaning, it's what I love most about their relationship.
Every look and every touch and every moment, essentially, send a big message. It might be hard to see at first, but I assure you, if you watch it again you'll know what I mean. What is weaved between Nezumi and Shion is nothing I have ever seen in an anime. It's a friendship that surpasses all comfort zones and doesn't hold a candle to any generic idea of how they're supposed to be around each other. The amount of pure CARE that they project is heartbreaking, and is never cheap.
I will say this, though. Some scenes are drawn to look more superficially appealing than others. I believe the polishing and dreamy presentation of a certain dancing scene is a big example of that - but even with that 'shippy' feeling, the meaning is not lost. Nezumi and Shion share a complex bond weaved with doubt, love, and twisted dependency - it's a treat to watch.
I will repeat this again, none of this is FAN SERVICE. Fan service is when things are meant to look a certain way for no other reason than to appease the fans. Well made fan service will provide some character development along with it. No.6 provides intimate moments which are our main source of true understanding of the main characters. It couldn't have been done as well in any other way - we wouldn't have gotten such a good read on them have they only ever just... TALKED. So, not fan service.
FINAL WORDS would be... Well, this is worth your time, if only to end up in a weird laugh/sob situation because the finale is a shit-pile of emotions and bad messages. If you're someone who enjoys a fresh take on characters, you should love this. If you love this already, do yourself a favor and go read the manga and the novel. It'll make the experience much better, I promise. read more
Jun 7, 2013
No. 6 is a touching story of two young boys from two very different worlds. It displays a clear picture of the differences between the ignorant and blissful inside world and the rough reality of the outside world. The story revolves around the city called No. 6 and as the story progresses, the city's secrets begin to be revealed. Without spoiling anything I'll move on to my opinions.
The world of No. 6 is built strong and everything works. The shabby run-down Western outskirts make a great contrast to the utopian futuristic world of No. 6. The story is great and fits the created world perfectly. It has a lot of dark aspects to it and adds a lot to the thrill!
The art is excellent too. The backgrounds are always magnificent and detailed and the animation was great, as expected from BONES. Action scenes were pretty neat, though not the best you can find. The background music wasn't that memorable, but it suited the atmosphere every time. I was overjoyed every time the other main character, Nezumi, sang. The opening and ending themes and the animation were really good and fit the story better than well! I also really loved the character designs. And not only did the characters look excellent, but they were probably one of the strongest parts in the series!
Both the main characters Nezumi and Shion are very different and nicely balanced but they also change each other. The character development during these 11 episodes is amazing and yet very realistic. There is affection between these two and whether to be considered platonic or not depends entirely on the viewer. For myself, however, I find them to have little romantic feelings for each other. Not for the fact that I like boys together but it actually feels right and suits the story. However this show is often considered as yaoi or shonen ai, but in fact, it's either. Most definitely not yaoi but the shonen ai part depends a little on the viewer.
As a reviewer I gave the whole a 9. Not because of pure math (final 9,4), not even because it would lack anything. But when it comes to recommending this series, I can't guarantee that _everybody_ would find it as good as I did. Most people probably do though.
My personal score for this series is a 10 and I rarely rate anything 10 because that would mean the series is perfect and flawless. However everything in No. 6 works and the impression it left on me was, well, perfect. Considering the small amount of characters and the length, it still managed to build a great story. I felt really emotional at the end and would have wished for more episodes, but why try to construct on a building that is already clean and finished? read more