13 of 13 episodes seen
The content of this show is ultimately the highlight, and also the whole reason for the controversy: young girls that have had their lives torn apart are given a second chance by having their memories wiped and insides replaced with mechanical parts, and are then trained to do the governments dirty work. What further adds to the controversy are that the young girls have to have supervison by their guardian/superviser called the "handler". Now this may sound kind of wrong, but the story never veers into that perverted/pedofilic territory, which is a bit of good news, for those who were worried.
Now the story is the highlight of the show, and in turn, makes this a bit of a slow moving show. Don't get me wrong, it definetly has action scattered throught, and it is top notch when it takes place, but its nowhere as heavy as the story, however, I like that aspect. And what a good story it is. Henrietta, Rico, Triella, Angelica, and Clyce are all loveable, and their handlers even have a bit of backstory, including Jose and Marco, however the real stars are the girls.
The animation, even for being a 2004 show, is superb. The characters, the environments, and even the guns have a very real look, even though this is still an anime. When shown, the guns are rendered in painstakingly realistic detail. In the first episode, you can see how Henrietta layed out all the parts of her pistol on the table, yes all the parts. Even the reloading details are superb, and add to the realism. Lighting is also very well done, especially on the last episode with the fireworks, so this was the cherry on top of the ice cream for the animation/lighting.
Sound was another flawless piece. All the voices, and even the English dub, were fantastic. When you have the Japanese and English dub on the same level, you know you have a hit. To compliment the animation and detail on the guns, the sound is perfect. I have seen countless movies, and played many video games, and the sounds in this were perfect, and on key with the actual sounds of the guns of their real life counterparts. Test this, especially in the second episode where Rico is using the Dragunov sniper rifle. Awesome. Surround sound setups will definetly get their workout here.
Overall, Gunslinger Girl is a deep, thought provocing show, that really shouldn't be missed. The characters, the guns, and overall, the story, make this one to have on your must see list. Because of all the above, this is my all time favorite anime. read more