Paranoia Agent (妄想代理人, Mōsō Dairinin)

Paranoia Agent is excellent stuff from Satoshi Kon.

Why? If you like psychological drama, peeking at odd sub-cultures, and a frank commentary on modern social/personal issues then this is for you. The animation work is quite nice, while not the greatest I’ve ever seen, it serves the characters, settings, story and therefore the director very well. It in no way distracts from the story being presented. The story itself, well it’s all chopped up with lots characters, incidents, personal issues, societal issues and let’s just say its fairly complex. However it is told in a linear way, that is to say episode one is definitely the start of the action and the action that follows occurs in the same sequence as episodes. The complexity is coming from all the characters, issues discussed and the interconnections between these two elements.  I’m halfway through the series and while I don’t feel clueless, I don’t have it all figured out. I also like the slow pacing that emphasizes thought processes and analysis rather than an action.

What’s not to like. It is complex and many of the issues being addressed are adult, not necessarily one to watch with the kids. Not saying there isn’t humor but it is a black humor. Alot of the characters are just a bit off, dodgy and/or plain old creepy, specifically the elements concerning Otaku culture, and this can be unsettling for those folks not comfortable with obsessive behavior. If you like your animation complex and brightly eye-catching, say likeNoein, this is not for you. Simple and subdued are the keywords here. Not action based, alot of talking and thinking about things, can move along slowly.

Personally I quite like it and recommend it.

Opening

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