Two newbies at the Narcotic Control Department in Japan, Haru and Kai, struggle against: drug dealers, gangs, murderers, psychopaths, mysterious organizations, and mad people in general. The gentle and caring one of the group, Kai, who has problems of his own, has the tendency of turning into a lethal killing machine in certain scenarios. The way he acts changes like that of a "switch". As the two do their job, answers of what is behind Kai's strange behavior and who exactly he is, is revealed.
I started watching this for the sole reason that Sugita Tomokazu was in it. I had no expectations, and had never even heard of the title. My first impression was "oh, this is just going to be a cheap rip-off of Death Note where they're going to try to shove as much mediocre bs into 1 hour as possible." However, I found myself inexplicably wanting more after it had finished (for two reasons, mostly good) I haven't watched Death Note in a while, but as someone who truly loved the anime/manga and is revolted by the idea of a cheap imitation, I can reasonably say
that this anime did not sound the alarms, despite the noticeable similarities in art and music.
Unfortunately for this anime, it's just too hard to pack a strong plot line into two episodes, however, this OVA did a surprisingly good job at conveying a captivating but not excessively complicated plot in only 1 hour. In terms of mystery/detective stories, I can't say that the plot is very unique - undercover agents trying to expose a malevolent drug-dealing organization - but it is executed nicely with a clean few plot twists that are not too contrived or predictable. I can actually say that the execution of the plot is quite perfect, it's simple enough to be conveyed in one hour, yet complex enough to keep you interested and captivated. The producers made the (right) decision to end the show with a little bit of mystery rather than trying to explain everything in the last few minutes, which, while it does leave me a little unfulfilled, it also leaves me satisfied with the developments the story has taken.
While I was expecting it to be a rip-off of Death Note, but was pleasantly surprised to find that the plot did a pretty good job at staying independent. There are certainly similarities (to be expected of the shared genre) and there are some attempts to mimic the dark, tragic, and mind-game aspects of Death Note, but Switch manages to hold it's own fairly well in this regard. My only complaint is that is seemed to make a subtle hint at the supernatural in the end, but I may have been mistaken. If it ends up being true (in the manga) I'll probably be disappointed (Death Note only got away with the supernatural aspect because of how well it was explained and incorporated into the series) The ending is slightly unsatisfactory in that it leaves many loose ends, but I prefer that to them being hastily and messily tied together like too many other short (and long) shows do. I rather like the feeling of mystery it leaves us at the end, and it's actually making me want to read the manga.
The art/colors/animation/composition is definitely reminiscent to that of Death Note, without a doubt. However, despite my cringing at the clear similarities (and my fear that one of my favored series might be tainted by a crude copycat) I grew to really appreciate the quality of the art and the attention to detail. They may have imitated the art style, but they did it well, and if I had never watched Death Note I know I would definitely say that the art and animation is excellent, so I've given it a 10.
The OP is pretty good, I'm rather picky when it comes to music, but I can say that I did like it within reason. The ED (which you only hear once) is also pretty nice. As a 2 episode OVA I can't say that they really matter much, as you only hear them twice at most. My biggest beef is with the OST. Another noticeable similarity to Death Note is the heavily orchestrated soundtrack. I have to say that Switch did not to such a great job at incorporating this type of music into the show. While the music was good, there were times when it stood out too much and it was clear that they were trying to capture the same classical dramaticims that Death Note was so flawlessly able to do. Unfortunately, operatic an Orchestral music is very refined and possessed great potential, likewise, it is must be used carefully and be specifically tailored to the situation. There were certainly good parts, but I would have been more satisfied if the producers tried a little harder to find something that would work better for them. I like the idea of using orchestral music in a modern-drama-mystery-suspense, (especially compared to some other types of music) but the execution could have been better, though it was by no means bad, and in some parts quite enjoyable.
The Seiyuus on the other hand were very good, I really don't have any complaints in that regard. The Seiyuu lineup is actually pretty impressive.
It's pretty hard to develop a character in just 1 hour, but there is a shade of character development, if you're careful enough to catch it. In one hour we still have much to learn about the characters, much less give them room to develop, but we do have some clever plot-twists that shed new light on our main characters at different points in the show. I thought the characters were very well made, they all seem quite realistic, and even the "bad guy" is pretty likable (I can't stand it when the "bad guy" is pinned as evil and given an unrealistically horrible personality) None of the characters are too contrived, though they aren't particularly unique as far as anime characters go - but that is also part of their success. Nothing is over-the-top, the characters are relatable, intelligent, and well-designed (you can actually tell the characters apart!) and they all act like real human beings (which is sometimes rare in anime)
Overall, I really did enjoy this show, and it's short enough that I'd probably watch it again. It's by no means perfect, but I'm very impressed by the work put into it. I don't view it as so much of a series in and of itself (it's not) but as more of an introduction to the characters, story, and ideas that I will probably follow up on by reading the Manga. When I look at it that way, it's an excellent piece.
Perhaps my rating of 9 is a little generous, but in terms of enjoyment (or perhaps it was just surprise) I give it a 9, and I definitely suggest you give it a try. Make it past the (slightly cliche'd) intro and OP, and try not to get too cynical about the similarities it has with Death Note. Just keep an open mind and enjoy the show :)
I Just finished watching this anime and felt an urge to share my piece of opinion on it.
Here's the deal: I am in a love and hate relationship with the series.
The story was intriguing enough to grab my attention and continue watching till the end however there are just too many unanswered questions left by the time it ends.
For me, as for someone who has not read the manga beforehand there were just too many unanswered questions left there. So many that I am heading to read the manga right away.
I understand this is not a proper review. Heck it's not a review at
all. But I really wanted to share my thoughts.
In the end I got hooked and yet was left really frustrated.
I expected much more with Switch and honestly, I was extremely disappointed. It's the cheesiest, most boring, overdramatic animes I have ever seen.
Story Rating: 5
The story is just your basic police story. Just a bunch of cops trying to stop some kind of drug and weapon possession. Basically, they did something bad. You can have no clue on what these guys did to get in trouble with authorities and you'll follow it easily. Basically, the story is just kind of bland but probably the only thing that tried to hold this anime together.
Art Rating: 4
Being an 'old' anime, I didn't expect much for
the animation portion. The colors are extremely muted and the art style is pretty generic. Nothing stands out to make it look like anything new or spectacular. It's just like animation backwash. Then again, I didn't expect much.
Sound Rating: 1
TIME FOR WHAT I F*CKING HATE ABOUT THIS SHOW!
For the voice actors, a lot of these people actually went on to do more note worthy roles so, i'm glad they got a job after this. However, none of them had any situation to give it their all. I guess they did their best with what was handed to them. Maybe except one actor who had to have their voice so high they sound like Alvin in the goddamn chipmunks. Yeah, you're suppose to take this anime seriously.
Now, the music....THE F*CKING MUSIC! I hated it so much! It's what made the show practically unwatchable. It was placed at parts that were so unneeded and played in scenes that were so boring yet, they make it sound like a dramatic war movie or something. Again, you're suppose to take this anime seriously. How the all sweet lords of hell am I suppose to take it seriously when you play someone banging on piano keys over two people talking about FLOWERS!
Character Rating: 3
I probably would have liked the characters a lot more if they one; made more episodes of the series or two; actually gave these characters some time together to actually work off each other. That's what makes a character, a character, to see their personalities work off or with other personalities. There's a few scenes with our main characters but they go by so fast you can miss them. How am I suppose to get invested in these characters if you don't show them having any personality. Kai, I guess would be the only exception. I actually kind of cared about him through out the episodes. Everyone else, EEEEHHH Fuck 'em!
Enjoyment Rating: 1
This anime was...so....BORING, and stupid, and bland. Just a forgettable, waste of time. It's so disappointing. You expect something good like with something 'Psycho Pass' did or maybe like 'Death Note'. But, it doesn't even try to be anything new or inventive. It's just something to pass the time with, in a very lame way.
Overall Rating: 3
Overall, this anime is not worth your time to watch. I didn't hate it and I might read the manga since I hears it's much better (andIdonthavetolistentoanyfuckingoverthetopmusic), I just got disappointed much like in the way 'Mirai Nikki' did.
Unless you want to be the kind of Otaku who has seen every. single. anime. ever! I say this one you can definitely skip. It may be short but, going through an hour of this just isn't worth anything.
I never had heard of Switch before until I randomly stumbled upon it. From what I saw the art looked fairly well done, and both episodes were only thirty minutes, so I was intrigued to see what it was about. And overall I wasn't too disappointed by the hour long OVA.
Story (8/10): the plot of the show reminded me of a James Bond movie, which was the main reason I decided to keep watching. It's centered around a police narcotics division trying to bust a group selling the notorious drug Funny Angel, or FA. It's thrilling, has a sense of suspense and causes you
to think a little. The overall world is quite immersive since the story moves so quickly, reminding me a lot like a movie. My only complaint is how many unanswered questions the show leaves, not only at the end, but throughout the whole thing. I can recall thinking in the last few minutes "what the fuck??" way too many times.
Art (7/10): there's nothing terribly unique about the art style or the overall animation. It's well done, and the characters are nice to look at. Yet again, there wasn't anything that was extremely hard to execute on a visual level.
Sound (8/10): the soundtrack worked well with the vibe of the story, which again reminded me of a secret agent/spy movie. It wasn't something that's extremely noteworthy, but it was definitely used well to fit the show.
Character (6/10): the characters were okay. There was quite a few of them, varying in importance, but none of them were really developed. If someone asked me to describe the characters, I wouldn't know what to say. At the most all I could do is divide them into two categories: the criminals and the cops. I especially wouldn't know what to say for Kai, who I guess would be considered the main character. We never know his motivations for wanting to protect Hal- let alone any character's motivation. Does Kai love Hal, or does he want to help his best friend? We'll never know! As a side note, there weren't any girl characters. This didn't bother me, but it was just odd to realize every character was male.
Enjoyment (8/10): watching the show in one sitting and being able to take it in such a short amount of was very enjoyable to me. The plot was interesting and grabbed my attention, allowing me to be immersed in the story. The hour watching the show was well-spent in my opinion.
Overall I'd recommend Switch to anyone wanting to watch something short and interesting, maybe needing something to pull them out of an anime slump.