428 the animation
カナン (Japanese)
Keywords: , , , , , , , ,
Notables: Animation - P.A. Works
Original Concept - Type-Moon
Two years after the mass terror incident that blighted Tokyo's Shibuya district, a girl named Canaan was sent to hunt the underworld terrorist organization [Snake] in the city of Shanghai. Regarded as being the direct perpetrator of the Shibuya event, Alfred, the boss of [Snake] whom Canaan have fought before, has been hiding out in South Asia. While in pursuit of her prey, Canaan chances to meet up with an old friend: Minorikawa, a free-lance writer who now works for the third-rate Japanese gossip magazine "Heaven publication"

Canaan is conceptualized by Type-Moon co-founders Kinoko Nasu and Takashi Takeuchi, based on the scenario that they created for the Nintendo Wii visual novel 428: Fūsasareta Shibuya de, which is noted for being one of the few games to be have been awarded a perfect score by Japanese games publication ↗Famitsu. The significant differences between Canaan (the animation) and 428:Fūsasareta Shibuya de (the game) is the location - Shanghai versus Shibuya.

For more information, see ↗Canaan(anime) or ↗428 Canaan (game) wikipedia entries.

New anime series first aired in July '09.
12 TV Episodes (~24min).
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Rent 9 9 8 7 7 7 Ggultra2764 [series:2160#1552]
Canaan proved to be quite the mixed bag for me with its fair share of worthwhile aspects and some major flaws that keep me from wanting to rate it higher. Before I get to my praises, I shall tackle my issues with the show. The show's plotting proved to be Canaan's weakest area where there wasn't much in the way of buildup concerning the plans that the Snakes had with the Ua virus as the show's central focus was more on the character relationships between the major female characters of the series than the virus plot. As a matter of fact, this plot element seemed so irrelevant that the show ran it alongside a typical case of government corruption by the American government without much explanation as to why and what was ultimately being planned with the virus seemed like something you could pull out of a science fiction/ horror movie. Adding to my snags with the series would be some over-the-top characters among those of the villains such as psycho lesbian Liang Qi and a childish-behaving old man with ridiculous speed and agility.

What does save the series from complete mediocrity for me would be the character interactions and developments involving the major female characters of the series. The connections between Alphard, Canaan and Maria are a complex one as all three are essentially conflicted over how to treat one another in regards to their past relationships that are hinted at points through flashbacks. For example, Canaan cares for Maria dearly because of her desire to care for somebody yet does not consider Maria's feelings of helplessness from her encounters with the Snakes. Maria desires to be someone on Canaan's level yet because of their different upbringings, they can never truly have a deep friendship with one another. Alphard detests Canaan for getting the attention of their mentor Siam, yet does not have any desire to kill or make her rival suffer as she halts attempts made on the lives of Canaan and Maria; as well as having the desire to fight with Canaan at her potential. The chemistry between the three proves to be an interesting one because of the internal conflicts the three have over one another and it does more than enough to make up for the weak plot buildup with the virus.

Canaan was one of the better-looking 2009 anime titles I've come across in terms of visual presentation. It sports clean and defined details plus a bright color tone with scenery and character designs; as well as having some great looking action scenes where you can expect fluid movement to be the norm without too many noticeable shortcuts in the animation. Animation highlights for me in the series included a gun-fight on city rooftops during a festival and an intense fight on a train between Canaan and Alphard.

Overall, Canaan is quite the mixed bag of an anime. While it sports a high-quality visual presentation for a TV series with interesting character dynamics between the three central female characters, the series really suffers in its plot buildup and had to toss in some characters that seemed too over-the-top to be in a series as serious as this. While a decent watch, this isn't a series I would be willing to hop back to anytime soon.

Last updated Saturday, August 13 2011. Created Saturday, August 13 2011.
Unevaluated Stretch [series:2160#628]
(One episode watched):

Gunplay, terrorists, an assasin, people dying of strange maladies, an extremely evil guy, a woman who's a killing machine--and yet I find myself hard pressed to maintain the slightest interest. This seems to be one of those shows which tries to be so "cool" that the viewer won't care whether the story makes much sense, but I've seen these elements so many times that they make me yawn more than be thrilled. And since little or no explanation is offered, why should I care who gets gunned down? The episode just leaps right into the story without much character introduction, as if their actions will tell us everything we need to know about them. But I don't suspend disbelief free of charge, and resent being patronized. Plus, I simply didn't notice any particularly likeable characters. I should admit that I didn't have high hopes for Canaan to begin with (I didn't watch episode one until something like a month after it aired), and shows of this genre are seldom my favorites.

Last updated Monday, August 03 2009. Created Monday, August 03 2009.

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