DVD Review: Amnesia (2013)

Posted by Retrokaiser On Tuesday, October 21, 2014 0 comments

"Amnesia" is an animated drama series about a young female adult named...  Well I am unsure about her name as it is not said anywhere in this show.  Why, you ask?  Because on one fine afternoon while working at a café she suddenly finds herself on her back completely unaware of who she is and where she is.  That's right, she suffers from amnesia.  Now how she got amnesia is where this story becomes a little iffy as the way she got amnesia was that she was bumped into by a spirit that looks like a fairy and is named Orion.  Orion is very sorry that he bumped into her and is willing to help her undo his mistake and return her life back to normal.  Not too long after that conversation we see a bunch of men come into the room and boy are they worried about her.  The young woman is a bit worried as these men seem like strangers to her but she goes along with them despite that.  Turns out the men are her childhood friends and they care for her very much.  The young woman starts to relax and try her best to continue her life and she seems to be getting some of her memories back.  While on a trip to the mountains so they can set off some fireworks we see a little spat between the young woman and one of her friends which leads to her running off and falling down a cliff (aaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhh SPLAT).  Later on we see that she has awoken in a bed only to find something very shocking has happened.  What is it you ask?  Let's just say that it will lead to some crazy things.  (Click "Read More" to read the full review).

Despite how silly some parts are you'll find the majority of the story in this show is actually pretty good with some well told drama that instantly draws you in.   This is also a show where it is strong from start to finish which is an uncommon thing found in anime.  Most episodes do have the same format of storytelling: She hangs out with one of her friends, manages to gain back a memory or two, repeat.  While repetitive you'll find that this show does not become stale at any point as every episode feels fresh.  When the young woman does gain back a memory you'll feel very good as it's quite satisfying seeing the main character getting her life back together again.  There were some moments in the show that were a bit frustrating as they were very predictable and forced but thank goodness that's only a few short scenes.  This show isn't just a straight up drama as they do spice it up and mix in some horror, fantasy, and more.  The mixed genres are both a good and bad thing as some genres work well with the story but the fantasy element was weirdly done as it gets in the way of the story and can ruin your immersion.  

Another problem I have with this show is with the cover and the advertisements as they make this show out to be a "Reverse-Harem" (where a whole bunch of guys are all fighting for one girl's heart at the same time).  This show is about as "Reverse-Harem" as "Bakemonogatari (2009)" is an "Harem" anime... Which is not at all.  I can see why people would confuse this with a "Reverse-Harem" anime but sadly I'm not willing to go over those reasons as that'll be spoiling too much about this show, that does frustrate me a little how I won't be going deeper into explaining why this show is just the regular kind of romance show...  Curse my morals in not spoiling things, yes I am aware that I have said spoilers in the past but those were for some very minor things (now awaiting for a comment that proves me wrong about not spoiling "big things").

Characters in this show are decent and you will care about them throughout the whole show.  The main character herself was the best character in the show and while she doesn't talk much you will find her emotions will do all the talking.  My problem with the characters is that they can tend to be a little generic but it's nothing big enough to ruin the show but I do wish they were a bit more unique.  Since I have been talking down on the "fantasy" elements you might think that I despised the character named "Orion".  Well you'd be wrong as I actually enjoyed that character as he was charming and funny but the fact that he is a fairy spirit is the part of the character that is the problem.  

Art-work in this show looks very solid with nice use of dark colors and that gives this show a crisp look.  Background designs are good as they have some nice detailing that captures the mood really well.  Characters are drawn well but the clothing that the characters wear is pretty bizarre as all of the main characters (minus the main girl) all looked like they were dressed like characters found in "Final Fantasy VII (1997)" and "Kingdom Hearts (2002)".  The crazy clothing and clumsy fairy does make me come up with a theory or two about the universe this show is in but other than that I find those two elements to break the immersion of the show a little...  Now let's get back to talking about the art-work and animation.  There is some use of three-dimensional computer generated models and I'm fifty-fifty on them as half of them looked good but the other half looked stiff and dated.  Animation in this show is nice and fluent and I found no problems with it at any point of the show.

The Japanese dub in this show was very good and had voices that worked well with all of the characters.  The acting in this show was pretty good also as the actors put some effort into the characters and it helped with the serious nature of the show.  There is an English dub included in this set also but I wasn't a fan of it, the voices and acting just didn't match up with the tone what so ever and made the show hard to watch after watching the Japanese dub.  The soundtrack in this show had some nice tunes in it but it also isn't anything you'll remember in the long run.

Only one thing can be found in the special features section and that is a feature titled "Lost Diary Entries" which is series of out-take recordings from the English dub.  I wasn't really a fan of this feature at all as it made me glad that I watched this show with the Japanese dub as the English voices had a very different tone that didn't match up with the serious nature of the show.  I'm not saying that I didn't find this feature interesting as it was just that and I am glad that it was included but I didn't enjoy watching it (a catch-22 situation).

Overall this was a pretty solid show and this is one of the few shows where I'll be re-watching it.  I'm going to recommend you check this show out. Do not be scared by the "girly" looking cover as this show appeals to both men and women equally.  Man up and watch this show.

Title: Amnesia
Animation Studio: Brain's Base
Genre: Animation/Anime, Drama, Romance, Mystery
Running Time: 288 Minutes (12 Episodes)
Distributor: Hanabee Entertainment
Rating: M15+ (Mature themes)
Price: $59.99
Recommended: Yes


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