I’ve started to take an interest in Anime. I’ve only seen a handful of them over the years although it was playing narrative-rich anime games that finally made me enjoy the genre. Thanks, Danganronpa and Yakuza! I did a quick browse of some good anime shows, and this one caught my eye. Little did I know, that I would find this show to be exceptional.
Erased is about a twenty-nine-year-old guy, Satoru. Satoru is a guy who’s been working a pizza delivery job while trying to make it as a manga artist. Satoru is also gifted with an ability he calls ‘Revival’. When he sees a blue butterfly move past him, he is taken back one to five minutes. In that time someone is going to die, and Satoru is the only one who can change the outcome if he is quick. Sometimes this will be detrimental to his health because he will throw himself on the line to save someone. By the end of the first episode, we see a tragic event happen that sends Satoru back to when he was ten years old. We find out when Satoru was ten; three girls were kidnapped and murdered over a couple of months. The serial killer is believed to be in the present, and for some reason, the ‘Revival’ has brought him back to try to change things, if he can.
I watched Erased like a long movie across two nights. There are only twelve episodes, and the whole series can be viewed in under five hours. Whenever I see Anime, for the most part, the style seems absurd and unbelievable. However, in Erased the story feels real and natural, even with time travel as a significant factor. It can jump from cute and romantic, to suspenseful at the drop of a hat.
If you’re still on the fence, think Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl with school kids, time travel and a serial killer. The show can currently be found on Netflix in Australia and the UK, and Hulu in the US.