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Elfen Lied

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Elfen Lied
Elfen Lied.jpg
When you're miserable, you need someone more miserable than yourself.
Genre: Biopunk
Action
Drama
Horror
Psychological
Romance
Seinen
Supernatural
Country: Japan
Release Date: July 25, 2004
Created by: ARMS
Distributed by: ADV Films
Episodes: 13 + Special


Elfen Lied is an Biopunk science fantasy manga series created in 2002 by Weekly Young Jump. It was adapted into an anime in 2004 by studio Arms and licensed by ADV in 2005.

Plot

Lucy is a special breed of human referred to as "Diclonius," born with a short pair of horns and invisible telekinetic hands that lands her as a victim of inhumane scientific experimentation by the government. However, once circumstances present her an opportunity to escape, Lucy, corrupted by the confinement and torture, unleashes a torrent of bloodshed as she escapes her captors. During her breakout, she receives a crippling head injury that leaves her with a split personality: someone with the mentality of a harmless child possessing limited speech capacity. In this state of instability, she stumbles upon two college students, Kouta and his cousin Yuka, who unknowingly take an injured fugitive into their care, unaware of her murderous tendencies. This act of kindness will change their lives, as they soon find themselves dragged into the shadowy world of government secrecy and conspiracy.

Why It's Anything But Miserable and Shame

  1. It shows the largest flaws of humanity of how corrupt, hypocritical, and power-hungry the dark side of humanity can be. As one episode showcases a gang of sadistic bullies beating Lucy's puppy dog in front of her and Lucy herself spent a majority of her life being experimented on in a laboratory that revolved around doing so on her species, the Diclonius. Two attributes that were ultimately responsible for turning her into a dissociative bloodthirsty misanthrope who became determined to take her revenge on the human race after all that they did to her, only being stopped from doing so by Kouta's love for her.
  2. Great art style that makes it feel like it's something from CLAMP.
  3. Good animation and visuals with CGI animation using Maya 3D software.
  4. It also shows that discrimination can lead to the worst of things such as war, murder, loneliness, fear and death.
  5. Great story to show if we fix the flaws humanity has caused, the world would be a better place.
  6. Mature content and themes used in a good and narrative reason.
  7. Great opening and ending theme.
  8. The opening sequence used a beautiful and art like background inspired by Gustav Klimt.
  9. Likable characters such as Lucy (yes, she did do evil things but her past explains why she has done them and she also did good things as well), Kouta (a person who's love and affection was the sole reason of Lucy not completely annihilating every human she came across), and Yuka (a young woman who serves as the "mother" figure of those living in the Maple House and cares deeply for Kouta in spite of her jealousy of his relationship with Nyu).
  10. Many flashbacks to give more information about the story and characters. Such as Lucy's past (her being the character whose experiences in her past takes up the majority of these flashbacks) and how her exclusion and bullying from other kids when she was a child played a major part in her becoming the violent and misanthropic psychopath she now is.
  11. The lighthearted scenes in an otherwise incredibly dark and brutal show are used to show there's still a lot of positive things in humanity (given how they serves as reminders that just because the show is very bloody and cruel for the most part doesn't mean that it still can't have it's own fair share of endearing moments).

Bad Qualities

  1. The show can be way to overtop with its violence and nudity, though while it is the main point of the series it is easily not for the faint of heart and it is one of the reason why it gained it's infamous reputation.
  2. Bad Japanese and English voice acting.
  3. Tomoo is the only remotely unlikable character as he always bullies Lucy a lot.
  4. The story is all over the place as it goes from the Special Assault Team trying to recapture Lucy and to Kouta's harem and it can't try to find what it want to do.
  5. The animation could need some work since they are many animation errors and it sometimes have an awkward camera.
  6. Much like Gantz, Tenjho Tenge, Hellsing (2001), Trigun, Air Gear, and Berserk (1997), it is an incomplete adaptation as it ended on a cliffhanger since it was made before the manga ended.
    • SPOILER: On top of that, it was unclear if Lucy survived the attack by the army for some time among fans, but through some symbolism, mainly the music box, the clock and the shadow´s appearance, it can be confirmed that Lucy survived the attack and had dealt with the army, at the cost of losing her other horn.

Trivia

  • On a positive review, someone said that Elfen Lied (at least, the anime) is sorta like Romeo and Juliet mixed with Stranger Things.
  • The Duffer brothers cited the show as an inspiration for their Netflix show Stranger Things. They said that Elfen Lied was like an "ultraviolent E.T." and noted that the character Eleven was inspired by the Lucy, the protagonist of the anime. The Duffer Brothers also cited the influence of Akira, which they felt had in turn influenced the anime.
  • The anime finished airing before the manga was complete; as a result, the plot differed between the two, especially the ending.
  • On June 12, 2015, the Chinese Ministry of Culture listed the show among the 38 anime and manga titles banned in China.
  • MRR saw certain similarities between Lucy and Marsupilami, labelled on the Adorable Yet Dangerous section of Christmas Bonanza.

Comments

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