After I first watched ERASED
, back in 2016, I said I wasn't sure I'd ever watch it again. I really enjoyed it, but it was so intense I wasn't sure I'd be able to handle a rewatch.
I'm glad I came back to it. It is
very intense, but it's also very good. And it's only twelve episodes, so it kicks you in the gut with DRAMA and EMOTIONS and then politely leaves to let you patch yourself up, rather than continually kicking you in the gut.
If I had to recommend an anime series to someone who'd never seen one before, I think ERASED
would probably be the one I'd choose, with the caveat that it deals heavily with child abuse.( Full-series spoilers for ERASED. )
I think ERASED
has my favourite opening sequence
of all time. Not just because of the part where the protagonist is clutching his head and writhing in emotional agony under a bridge, although that is very good.
I've been thinking fondly recently about Higurashi
and how much I love watching Keiichi slowly losing his mind with terror. So I ordered the two-volume manga of the first arc (Onikakushi
, called the Abducted by Demons
arc in the manga).
I think this is the first time I've read a manga that's an adaptation, so I didn't entirely know what to expect. Fullmetal Alchemist
, Revolutionary Girl Utena
, Death Note
, DN Angel
, Full Moon o Sagashite
, they were all manga to begin with. But Higurashi
started out as a visual novel. Would the manga adaptation be good? Would it feel too compressed?
My reservations turned out to be unfounded. I enjoyed the Higurashi
manga a lot! Even if it suffers slightly from going TITS TITS TITS too much before getting down to the business of psychologically pulling its characters apart. (The manga changes the early scene where Mion and Keiichi are playing 'hey, Keiichi, show me your dick' chicken to be about Mion's breasts instead! Outrageous.)
When the manga does
start ripping Keiichi to shreds, it does it very effectively, although of course I can't say how it would have impacted me if I'd read the manga before the visual novel. In some ways the visual novel portrays the horror more effectively by having less to work with visually and more to work with in terms of sound, and by having more time to really dig into Keiichi's mind, but it was still really cool to see the characters having more expressions. And to see Keiichi's face!
(Keiichi's increasingly petrified, sleep-deprived, conflicted face. These poor kids.)
Reading the manga when I've played up to Tsumihoroboshi
, and therefore have slightly more of an idea of what's going on, absolutely ripped me apart. Everything is agonising!( Spoilers for the Onikakushi/Abducted by Demons arc of Higurashi: When They Cry. )
This has prodded me into beginning a replay of Higurashi
. I'm doing some sprite editing this time around, though, because a few of the Steam sprites bother me; I wasn't a fan of Rena's embarrassed/anxious expression, for example, so I've changed it from this
. I was going 'I wish I could play a version with a few of the sprites altered' and then 'wait, I have access to the game files! I
have the power to do this!'