Japan, 2039. Ten years after the outbreak of the "Apocalypse Virus," an event solemnly regarded as "Lost Christmas," the once proud nation has fallen under the rule of the GHQ, an independent military force dedicated to restoring order. Funeral Parlor, a guerilla group led by the infamous Gai Tsutsugami, act as freedom fighters, offering the only resistance to GHQ's cruel despotism.
Inori Yuzuriha, a key member of Funeral Parlor, runs into the weak and unsociable Shuu Ouma during a crucial operation, which results in him obtaining the "Power of Kings"—an ability which allows the wielder to draw out the manifestations of an individual's personality, or "voids." Now an unwilling participant in the struggle against GHQ, Shuu must learn to control his newfound power if he is to help take back Japan once and for all.
Guilty Crown follows the action-packed story of a young high school student who is dragged into a war, possessing an ability that will help him uncover the secrets of the GHQ, Funeral Parlor, and Lost Christmas. However, he will soon learn that the truth comes at a far greater price than he could have ever imagined.
The first two episodes of Guilty Crown were screened at the New York Anime Festival on October 15, 2011. The screening of the second episode was a world premiere as the episode did not air in Japan until October 20, 2011.
#1: "Euterpe" by EGOIST; produced by supercell; performed by Chelly (ep 1) #2: "My Dearest" by supercell; performed by Koeda (eps 2-12) #3: "The Everlasting Guilty Crown" by EGOIST; produced by supercell; performed by Chelly (eps 13-22)
#1: "Departures ~Anata ni Okuru Ai no Uta~ (Departures ~あなたにおくるアイの歌~)" by EGOIST; produced by supercell; performed by Chelly (eps 1-12, 22) #2: "Kokuhaku (告白)" by supercell; performed by Koeda (eps 13-21)
Many people are aware of the financial problems faced by the anime industry, and one of the methods that studios have adopted over recent years to try to shore up their crumbling foundations is to adapt popular manga, games, and more recently, Western comics. This approach has become a tried and tested moneymaking endeavour for the majority of studios, but in many cases this is simply due the fact that the source material caters to the lowest common denominator - which usually means fanservice. Unfortunately, the relative success of these shows have allowed them to become the norm rather than the exception, and with that comes a number of problems.
The sad fact is that while it's okay to find inspiration from other sources, the industry has become so used to the adaptation that studios and writers find it difficult to produce work that could be considered "original". Instead, what passes for a unique story tends to be nothing more than a collection of concepts and ideas from other tales that are thrown together in the vain hope that people will rush to buy the end product because ... well, because someone tells them to.
But rather than dwelling on such things, let's take a look at Guilty Crown.
Set in Tokyo in the year 2039, a decade has passed since a mysterious outbreak known as the "Apocalypse Virus" killed thousands of people and brought Japan to its knees - a disaster that would later be called "Lost Christmas". Since that time Japan has lost its independence, and has become a martial state governed by an international organisation known as GHQ. The story opens with a pink-haired girl and a small robot escaping from a futuristic-looking facility, but security forces injure and corner her until she falls off a bridge. The next morning is just like any other day for highschool student Ouma Shu, an awkward young man who is a fan of the pop-group Egoist, whose lead singer just happens to be a waif-like girl with pink hair.
And then everything gets ... weird.
Guilty Crown is a bit of an odd duck as it attempts to blend several disparate themes, but doesn't quite manage to finish the job. The plot has clearly been influenced by several popular franchises - which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but the execution is where the writers have let themselves down. The narrative is often disjointed, and many events in the storyline appear to have no logic behind them other than to put Shu through an emotional wringer. In addition to this, the writers appear to have taken a rather nonchalant approach to reasoning and rationale, one example of which is how GHQ's repeated massacres are never covered by any sort of media outlet. This seemingly lackadaisical attitude is apparent in several areas of the plot - which is littered with "coincidences" - and these cause the narrative to have a mechanical feeling. In many ways it's almost as if the story was nothing more than a collection of bits that would apparently appeal to the largest number of people.
Aside from the inclusion of numerous well-known aspects that have clearly been transplanted from other popular stories and the "plot-by-numbers" approach, Guilty Crown also suffers from the rather obvious idea that most adults are evil and only kids are able to save the world. That said, the series does have some good points, in particular the way it attempts to recreate a situation similar to that found in "Lord of the Flies" by putting all of the students in one place and imposing self-rule. There are other, similarly dark influences that add a veneer of maturity to proceedings, but sadly these aren't enough to support the inherent weaknesses in the narrative - the main one being the decision to make yet another school-based anime.
In terms of production quality, Guilty Crown is arguably up there with some of the better shows of recent years, but the sometimes stunning visuals and effects are tempered by a few issues that may initially appear to minor, but in actuality are representative of the mentality of the show's creators. It's obvious that a great deal of thought has gone into the background artwork and set designs, but the same isn't true of the characters. For the most part they look good, but the decision to feature highschool students places an immediate limitation that becomes obvious when one considers the variety of features and body shapes found amongst the adults.
The problem lies in the fact that the design of the younger roles includes an element of stereotype in order to impart a degree of familiarity - thereby making the show more accessible to people. It's an old marketing trick that has become a staple of the anime industry over the years, and while Guilty Crown has tried to be a little bit more subtle than most in its usage, one does have to question the logic behind Tsugumi. A cat-eared tsundere loli wearing what is effectively a plug suit (and a maid costume later on), only serves to highlight the thought processes of the show's creators.
Thankfully Production I.G. maintain their standards when it comes to the animation, and the series is littered with flowing, well choreographed action scenes. The characters are well-balanced in their movements, and a degree of care has been taken with those that are injured, disabled, or suffer from an affliction.
Like many anime that run for over twenty episodes, Guilty Crown features two opening and ending sequences - each with an original track written by Supercell. The first OP is a rather dizzying blend of effects, character montages and action scenes while the song "My Dearest" - a suitably fast paced and dramatic pop song performed by Koeda - sets the tone for the series. "The Everlasting Guilty Crown" performed by the fictional band Egoist is the track of choice for the second opening sequence, but while the artwork and design ethic have clearly shifted to promote a bittersweet atmosphere, the actual content is much the same as that of the first OP. Egoist also perform the melancholy ballad "Departures ~Anata ni Okuru Ai no Uta~" for the first ending sequence, which features Ouma Shu and Yuzuriha Inori walking away from each other against a backdrop of character art and effects. The second ED contains a mixture of video footage of landscape speeding by, scenes from the series and a few still images of the school environs that are "projected" onto a screen behind Inori and Shu as they decide to run - all while Koeda performs the rather upbeat rock song "Kokuhaku"
Which brings up one small issue.
Although it's true that some thought has gone into the composition of the opening sequences and that they are very well choreographed, both also feature overt plot spoilers. Now this does happen in other anime, but in general there are efforts to avoid such things occurring - which doesn't appear to be the case with Guilty Crown.
Aside from that minor niggle, the high production standards are also reflected in the quality of the music and audio effects. Sawano Hiroyuki has taken care to ensure that the background pieces are varied and suitably dramatic where necessary. The wide range of sounds and noises are clear and distinct, and the audio/visual choreography shows just how much effort has been made to produce a show that looks and sounds great.
Unfortunately the same can't be said of the actual dialogue.
Now while it's true that Guilty Crown features a range of characters and personality types, for some reason the decision was made to revert to old anime stereotypes and then write justifications into the storyline. The script is littered with monologues, diatribes, conversations and arguments that would grace any show where the "hero" has to lead his people to salvation whilst fighting against the enemy and his inner demons, forming a pseudo-harem along the way, and showing the world just how much of a tragic-yet-heroic figure he is. Thankfully the actors are more than capable, but no matter how good their skills are, prosaic and formulaic dialogue will always be just that.
As for the characters themselves, Ouma Shu is the kind of leading man who can be found in a number of other titles - quiet, reserved, doesn't have many friends, and a bit of a loser - and therein lies the problem. The writers have taken great pains to try to show him as a "human" more than anything else, but in their efforts to promote Shu as the tragic hero, they've ignored one of the most basic rules of characterisation.
In other words, Shu has no personality whatsoever - even at the end of the series when all his "suffering" is over.
It's this apparent inability to develop the characters in any meaningful way that makes them appear as nothing more than inane, and the lack of any real growth means that everyone pretty much ends the series having learned very little (aside from maybe Daryl). In addition to this there's an element of ridiculousness to the choice of characters, the prime example being Yuzuriha Inori (although Tsugumi does come a close second). One has to wonder what chemically induced delusion could have persuaded the show's creators that having the lead singer of a hugely popular band stealing from the enemy in the opening scenes while wearing her stage outfit was a good idea.
Apparently students can recognise her even though she's wearing a school uniform, but soldiers and officers of the military forces controlling Japan have no idea who she is since pink-haired girls wearing fluttery costumes are a dime a dozen in Japan.
Guilty Crown is one of those anime that can only truly be enjoyed if you have never watched any of the titles that it takes its inspirations from - and that becomes a problem if one has watched, and enjoyed, most of them. The main issue is that there are several character types and plot elements that are better used in their original anime, so their inclusion here makes them stand out in less than flattering ways.
The real problem with Guilty Crown though, is the element of arrogance that is prevalent throughout the series, and this comes solely from the show's creators. The basic premise of Guilty Crown is perfectly fine, but everyone from the director and series composers to the producers have assumed that the "anime-by-numbers" approach that they have so clearly used here is enough to make a hit franchise. There appears to have been a major assumption that the audience will swallow the whole thing without automatically referencing other shows that they may have watched, and that's where everything begins to fall apart.
Storytelling is, after all, an art form, and a good writer can captivate their audience without overtly referencing where there inspiration came from. Unfortunately the folks behind Guilty Crown appear to have forgotten this simple fact, and it leaves one with the sad realisation that this anime had the potential to be so much more than it is.read more
With the large amount of Guilty Crown reviews going around lately, It wouldn't be too hard to find a 'decent' review, right? well that's not the case at all, It seems that most of the reviews are either written by blind fan-boys/fan-girls or haters, 10's,9's,4's and 3's seem to be the popular choice of overall rating, though looking at Guilty Crown in a balance way, this anime definitely deserves a 7 and I'll explain why in the next couple of paragraphs which will you most likely will flick through.
= Story (3) =
If you have been watching Guilty Crown or have seen some of the rantings on the forums, you would know that the story is filled with cliché's and awful execution (for the most part anyway), So I won't go that in-depth to the story, basically just think of it as a mecha-action-supernatural-apocalyptic-drama-comedy-Sci Fi-romance-school-fan service super show.
In other words, Shu (Shuu), your average 16-year-old guy living in a future version of Tokyo get's himself wrapped up in the activities of terrorist group defying the government called Funeral Parlour, he meets the leader Gai, find's out his favourite singer is a member of the group and that the government is corrupt blah blah blah
= Art (10) =
If there's one thing that no one can complain about, I'd say it's the art. Every episode looks of cinematic quality and the character designs are well down as you'd expect from Production I.G and Redjuice (supercell). If there is one thing to fault about the art, I believe it's the design of the apocalypse virus, It just doesn't look like some deadly disease that someone would be afraid of, though that doesn't really matter.
= Sound (9) =
Sound is also a great part of Guilty Crown, the insert music and the OST is brilliant, the first OP 'Euterpe' was only used in the first episode which was disappointing since the second OP which lasted for 11 episodes wasn't hardly as good. The best OP in my opinion and one of my favourite anime openings is the third and last one 'The Everlasting Guilty Crown', It seriously made the other two seem like crap in comparison.
= Character (7.5) =
7.5? That's not even an score according to MAL is what you might say though that's really the only score I can give it, The characters and their developments weren't very good though they weren't just good either, sort of in-between.
The problem with the characters is that they introduced too many too fast, there wasn't really any-time to grow attached to them or even remember some of them at all. You didn't know which ones were supposed to be Minor or Main characters or just background ones in most of the first half.
Another problem was the likeability of the main characters in most of the FIRST HALF, Shu just sit's around most of the time, being a indecisive, annoying loser. Gai was just emotionless (for the most part) and all Inori could do was use the power of singing(?), provide fan-service and dodge (she might of shot a gun once) but that's it.
Though, (without spoiling anything) In the second half, the main characters had great development.
= Enjoyment (7) =
Enjoyment levels really depend on how serious you take Guilty Crown, don't go into the series expecting a masterpiece because you will most definitely be disappointed and hating on it. Though if you are a simple person (no offence) and just like your anime with ton's of great looking action scenes and a little bit of everything rolled in one (even if the result is total mess) then you will obviously enjoy the series a lot more.
= Overall (7) =
Overall, Guilty Crown is definitely not a masterpiece, though it does NOT deserve the crap reputation it gets, sure the story becomes screwed up beyond repair with the can of cliché's they sprung at you each episode and the character development doesn't really start until halfway through the series, what really matters at the end of the day is how much the viewer enjoys the anime, people will hate, like or love GC and that's their opinion just as this review gives my opinion, I don't really care about the 'helpful' or 'not helpful' clicks, as long as my review isn't buried so deep that it can't be of at least some help to the many users who are looking for a new anime to enjoy, and that's the whole point of reviews, to help people decide whether a anime would be to their liking or not.read more
Let me tell you a story. You can think it to be a tale, a legend or even start your own religion based to its awesomeness, but more importantly, read it.
Once upon a time there was a man who loved flying. It was his passion, not his only reason to live, but he certainly enjoyed it more than some other things in his life. One day the man was flying with his airplane like he often did. The day was beautiful and sunny, the man was happy. Before the man realized, his airplane started to lose height. Airplane wasn't working anymore, the man had to do emergency landing. 5 seconds before the airplane touched the ground the man yelled "I made it!" But he was wrong, the airplane crashed and he died.
You are probably wondering what on earth this has to do Guilty Crown. Just wait.
There was two other man who saw the unfortunate accident. Other of the man said "At least he had some good flying." And the another said "He is dead." Like most of the stories created, this one also has a lesson to give. I'm going to give you thinking break.
5 stars shall be enough. The lesson; everything has good sides and everything has bad sides - flying is fun and dying sucks.
Now to the serious Guilty Crown review, I will keep it simple.
- Art is amazing, fabulous, great, unique - it's feels like rainbows are having sex in your eyeballs.
- Souds are also memorable and could say - the shit. Ignoring the engrish op song.
- Dem bitches are sexy, especially Inori. One of the sexiest teens anime can offer.
- Script ( seriously, is the writer 5 or 12?)
- Plot, there is none, or it's extremely weak, slow paced and going nowhere.
- Fight plans and tactics are based to luck and Gai's prophet-like powers (e.g. episode 7, student council bitch on the boat, not a single doubt that she wouldn't be there, yet everyone would have died without her being there).
- Because of the setting, there is not a change that everything wouldn't be okay in the end, there is no excitement.
- Characters don't have actual personalities, seriously, they don't.
- Characters don't have motives. Random student starts hanging with the team, that's it. "Japan has been under the control of a multinational organization called GHQ." There is obviosly people in the slums who has lost everything because this organization. Instead of giving mc role to someone who has reason to fight, they give the role to suck-@-life teen just to start another school based shonen with lot of teens and eyecandies.
- Inori is completely different "character" every time she appears.
- There is no actual character development.
- In the end, all the characters are bad, at least they are failures as characters.
- Fan service. It could be bearable, sometimes it's fun and works, but in GC case, it's just to much. Inori doesn't even have an actual outfit, she is wearing a sex toy. In the end, she is nothing more than a doll or a robot. Pure eyecandy, her whole meaning of existence seems to be fan service.
- Action is completely stupid. Inori's superhuman abilities made some of the running and action scenes completely useless. She could have just use her powers, but no. Director decided it would look cool if there is action on every single episode. No matter how mindless, unneeded and illogical it is. Basically to fool viewers.
- Direction contains fail and errors. Funniest failure scene would be when Inori defended Shu from 3 elite swat man. She is standing in the middle without any shelter, 3 swat men with machine guns running towards her (none is shooting). Inori speaks to Shu, makes some nice moves, take guns and shoots the men. So badass! So hardcore!
- Overall execution is nowhere near well done.
- Seriously needs more music, they have it, why don't they use it?
- Guilty Crown is the epitome of unoriginality. There nothing original, n-o-t-h-i-n-g.
- Biggest failure is what it tries to be, a revolutionary story based to war and tactic, story around action and sci-fi. In reality, it's nothing what it tries to be, it's completely 100% school based ecchi harem.
I don't hate with passion. I like flying, but dying is just to much. Every unhelpful vote will be handled as people being afraid to admit the truth~
Should you watch this anime? Here's a quick check list. (Absolutely NO SPOILER)
1. Do you like near perfection art/animation?
2. Do you like boobs, butts, lolicons?
3. Do you like mecha and superpowers?
If you say 'yes' to 2/3 above then you should definitely give this anime a try, but let us continue...
4. Do you like bipolar characters? Emo? PMS? Post-traumatic Stress Disorder?
5. Do you like unpredictable story development?
If you say 'yes' to 1/2 above then you should enjoy this anime somewhat.
Now for the ultimate question..
6. Do you like cluster-fuck plots full of inconsistencies? Meaning your brain will not be able to comprehend what you are watching. In extreme cases, you may feel the urge to go murder your neighbor's pets.
If you say 'yes' to #6 then you may have mental disorders of some sort, but you will no doubt 'enjoy' this anime and call it a masterpiece.
If you say 'no' to #6 then you should be proud because your brain is still in good working condition. You will also 'enjoy' this anime but in a different way. Even though your brain wants to self-destruct due to incoherent cluster-fuck plots this anime has to offer, you will find yourself unable to stop watching it. Your brain will then go into defensive mode. It will stop trying to interpret the plot and convert it to idiotic incomprehensible comedy instead.
Now on to my review:
The story is your typical save the world shounen anime. However, the producers manage to mind-fuck the viewers by poorly delivering inconsistent plots throughout the entire length of anime. You will find yourself saying 'what the fuck' over and over until you get used to it and start laughing instead.
Each major characters are filled with emotions and are professionally portrayed. However, they are very mentally unstable for the most part. You will have a great time trying to decipher their emotions, but don't bother because as I've said before, they're fucked up in the head.
This is arguably the most beautiful anime of all time in my opinion. You will no doubt feel like the characters, backgrounds, and special effects are fornicating with your eyeballs.
Voice acting is top notch. Sound effect is great. Music is beautifully utilized in the show, but they're mediocre by themselves.
You will fall in love with the first 1/3 of the show. Then you will feel confused, enraged, and mind-fucked from there on out. If you manage to overcome all the anger and denial, you will realize that you're being trolled. Finally, you will not give a fuck about the show anymore and have a blast watching it all the way through.
10/10 because I've never been trolled so hard in my life
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A great soundtrack can make an average anime good and a good anime great. Music gives life to each and every character, while guiding you through the emotional roller coaster of each scene! Let's explore what makes a soundtrack truly great by looking at 15 of the best OSTs that anime has to offer.