New Anime Obsession: Erased

It’s officially autumn, which means that between work and theatrical productions your girl is chilling by checking out “new” anime! I’ll be 100% with you… lately it has been a little difficult for me to get into newer titles. I suppose if I have a choice I usually just go with a tried and true classic, something predictable that serves as a boost of nostalgia to give me hope that my life isn’t just becoming a series of darkly-humored mediocrity. However, lately I have made a conscious decision to check out my list of newer anime to not only give you guys good reviews and suggestions but also round out my own perspective.

I first heard about Erased (Boku dake ga Inai Machi, which translates to The Town Where Only I Am Missing) while scrolling through Netflix. I usually don’t let Netflix decide my next adventure, but this one seriously stuck out to me after watching the preview. Like most great anime, Erased began as a manga, written by Kei Sanbe. It follows twenty-nine-year-old Satoru Fujinuma, a failing manga artist who is forced to work as a pizza delivery guy to make ends meet. What makes our man Satoru special is something called Revival, which is his ability to slip back into time. This happens usually in order to give him the opportunity to stop a devastating event, but it comes at a cost. At first these events are random; he doesn’t have much say as to when or why they happen. But then an event arises that forces him further back than he has ever travelled – his mother’s murder. And with this, he slips back to the year 1988 into his elementary school age self to figure out how to prevent her demise which would take place eighteen years later.

Satoru goes back to February 15, 1988 to stop not only his mother’s death but save the lives of three children who were kidnapped and murdered in his neighborhood during this time.

I absolutey love this series. To me, this is the perfect balance of psychological thriller and supernatural genres. We have a time traveler who possesses the memories and mental capacity that he had in the year 2006 at the age of twenty-nine. This is something I truly appreciate as an adult otaku – having an older protagonist that is not only wholly relateable but greatly likeable. Too often we have main characters that are teens or younger, so it is refreshing to have an adult lead… even if for much of the show he is living as his eleven-year-old self. We have his struggle to act childlike and also solve the mystery of the childrens’ deaths and then prevent them from ever happening in the first place. As you can imagine, this gets messy, and he doesn’t end up succeeding at first, which only complicates his life.

Erased will take you down twists and turns that you just wouldn’t expect. As soon as I felt that a certain scene would be your typical predictable trope, it is turned on its heel and you are led on an unexpected roller coaster ride. And yeah… I might have cried like a little bitch a couple of times. It really is just that thought provoking. Nothing beats an anime that makes you sit there and really think about life.

If you were thinking about giving this one a shot, I recommend it. This is a one season anime with no plans for a second, so although it is short, it is complete to where you will feel satisfied at the end.

Me too, Kayo… me too…

Have you watched Erased? And yes, I mean the anime, NOT the live-action. Tell us what you thought, we always love to hear your take!

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