|1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 99, 100|
|Overall||Art||Animation||Character Design||Music||Series Story||Episode Story||Reviewer|
This TV adaptation of Silent Mobius was a great improvement over the two subpar movie adaptations released earlier in the 1990s. Being at 26 episodes, the series has more time to focus on exploring the major events that led to the threat of Lucifer Hawks coming upon our world and fleshing out other prominent members of AMP. The girls that make up the group are a likeable bunch having different personalities and backgrounds that led them to form or join AMP. A number of these characters get development throughout the series as they deal with the Lucifer Hawks and personal relationships, particularly Katsumi as she comes to grips with joining AMP and dealing with her family legacy. |
The conflict between AMP and the Lucifer Hawks proves to be an engaging one, especially towards the second half of Silent Mobius. Enough plot twists are tossed out where certain AMP characters are revealed to have past connections to what led the Hawks to our world, the series isn't afraid to toss its characters into deadly and depressing situations (even tossing in a character death that shakes the resolve of one prominent character) and the major antagonist of the series hatches a clever plan that pushes AMP to its breaking point in the final episodes of the series. These shocking developments kept me hooked on the series from start to finish.
Silent Mobius also has enough time in exploring and giving enough details as to how society functions in the wake of the problems that humanity faced by Lucifer Hawks to give the series somewhat of a cyberpunk vibe. Corporations in charge of the day-to-day operations of major areas of society, entire areas of a city being slums for criminals due to no land redevelopment to them, malfunctioning robots running amuck, people coming to grips over loss of human identity with becoming a cyborg (big subject with Kiddy's character). The fact the series could give enough of these elements while retaining focus on its characters and the continued conflict with Lucifer Hawks did well at catching my interest.
The show's not without its imperfections. Some characters seem a bit underdeveloped compared to others (Lum and Lebia) and the Lucifer Hawks don't get much in the way of fleshing out. In addition, the show lacks a proper resolution as Silent Mobius concluded during the middle of some major plot developments revealed in the show's final episode.
The visuals to Silent Mobius are a bit of a mixed bag. While sporting bright colors and defined details with scenery and character designs, the style of animation tends to get inconsistent on occasion, particularly with how character faces are drawn. The series does make use of CG animation in its rendering of magical effects and a later scene involving a Lucifer Hawk which stick out from the regular animation. And for an action series, the animation is rather lackluster as shortcuts are apparent on a number of occasions with still shots and reused animation frames. The soundtrack to the series, on the other hand, was high quality throughout as the tracks matched well with the moods of the various situations faced by the characters consisting of selections such as dramatic ballads and intense insert music.
Overall, Silent Mobius made for an engaging paranormal/ sci-fi action series which expands upon the content from the two earlier movie adaptations by further exploring its world and characters with some engaging plot twists to boot making it a better adaptation of its manga source material despite its lack of a proper ending.
Last updated Saturday, July 23 2011. Created Saturday, July 23 2011.
(Rent- or Watch+)|
(All episodes watched):
Some shows are easy to understand, but only because they are simplistic and unoriginal. On the other hand, some are sophisticated and complex but for some reason they become difficult for the average viewer to make sense of. I would say that Silent Mobius falls into the latter category. This was a show which had countless plot threads, veiled meanings and unexpected links between events (comparisons to Eva leap to mind). The problem is, I get frustrated watching shows in which there are clearly logical and carefully planned plot developments going on, based on hints from past episodes, yet for some reason I’m not making the connections. Is it because the story isn’t being told very well, or because I haven’t a long enough attention span, or both, or neither? I could always be an idiot, but I also think that the amount of attention which I’m willing to devote to a series is probably proportional to the entertainment I’m getting out of it. Maybe some shows have brilliantly sophisticated plots, but they’re just not fun enough to summon the mental effort which is needed to grasp it all. Perhaps it’s a sort of Catch-22: A lot of attention is needed to fully understand and enjoy the show, but the attention isn’t available unless I’m already enjoying it! Perhaps a show needs to “prime the pump”, so to speak, with an attention grabbing first episode. Unfortunately, I was not particularly impressed by the first couple of this series’ episodes. SM got of to a slow start for me.
On second thought, it’s not the sophistication of the plot itself which is the problem, rather it’s the decidedly unsophisticated manner in which it is presented to us. It didn’t hold my attention firmly enough, and maximum effort was called for in order to make sense of it all. I couldn’t muster enough concentration to fully understand it; that would have required more than one viewing and I didn’t think that was warranted given the amount of enjoyment I was getting. So I settled for a modest level of viewing, not really trying to completely understand everything but instead being satisfied with what could be grasped even by a casual viewer like myself. And even so I had a fairly good time. The impression that I’ve gotten of the series as a whole is of a neat story which was delivered in a lackluster fashion. It’s the cleverness, the “neatness” of the basic story which saves it from the half hearted presentation that it gets. Even if they aren’t fully exploited, things like the camaraderie of the team members, the developing romances, the action (such as it is), and the intriguing strangeness of the basic premise were fun. It’s a pity that more talent and effort wasn’t devoted to this anime version.
I tend to categorize anime into funny shows, plausible shows (ones that are interesting because they make sense), and cool shows (ones that are exciting). The humor is OK, this is clearly not a comedy but it contains a fair number of good jokes anyway. What Silent Mobius really needed was “coolness”, because there wasn’t all that much plausibility to the story (magic is the only effective defense against bizarre aliens?). The action scenes weren’t all that thrilling and sometimes seemed stereotypical and generic. If it had been truly thrilling a suspension of disbelief would have happened automatically--or perhaps I wouldn’t have cared if it was plausible or not since I was having fun anyhow. The signature episodes which each focus on one particular character tended to seem dull. The special capabilities which we learn that the AMP team members possess sometimes play critical parts later on, but when the episodes which reveal them are unexceptional it is hard to remember them—for me, at least. It’s telling that the high point of the series for me turned out to be a dream. That is, veering away from the usual storytelling style was what caught my attention. It’s as if we have the skeleton of an excellent story but the viewer must rely on his imagination to flesh it out, because the anime doesn’t do all that great a job in this regard.
For a long while I was certain that this would be one of those shows with regards to which people swear that the manga was much better than the anime version, but on the contrary I am told that the manga was even more confusing than the TV series! I think it’s significant that apparently the people writing the R1 subtitles missed the connection between Projects IREM and YLEM, just like I did. The more complex a story is the more difficult the making of a worthy anime will be, and the more imperative that it not be done half-heartedly. This was a decade long manga compressed into 26 episodes after all; I have to give the makers credit for that—though it would probably have been a good idea to wait another year or two until the manga was complete, given the disappointing conclusion. A more ambitious remake would be nice, especially now that the manga is finished.
See the episode reviews for a thorough explanation of what’s going on, courtesy of Devil Doll.
Last updated Saturday, January 31 2009. Created Saturday, November 08 2008.
Not a bad anime. Although you probally won't get whats going on unless you watch a few episodes. It's charectors are greatly disigned and the themes love, friendship, trust, aand loyalty all play among other roles. The only problem was I thought it was a little short so that's it
Last updated Friday, February 20 2004. Created Friday, February 20 2004.
Watched three episodes, didn't see a single thing having to do with fighting evil or whatever it is they're supposedly employed to do.|
Instead it was a bunch of angsty, girly, make mountains out of molehills, backstory and much general stupidity.
Maybe I just stumbled across the three crappy episodes and the rest of the series is actually decent, but I have my doubts.
Last updated Thursday, September 11 2003. Created Thursday, September 11 2003.
|Buy 4||8||8||10||10||9||10||Devil Doll||[series:580#752]|
[Score: 94% = "Buy+", one of my Top 3 Anime series and my favorite Supernatural Conflict anime; episode reviews. Other recommended Supernatural Conflict anime: Kannazuki no Miko, Aquarian Age]
While the "front story" does use some high-tech weaponry, and more magic (like intelligent swords), and awful monsters, and some mystic ideas, the underneath topics seem more accessible to me than in NGE: This is a story about loyalty and friendship, and facing problems (instead of EVAding them ;-), and being close together (as friends and even as lovers - this isn't a kids' anime, although no nudity scenes occur at all, and violence is presented visually in a 'graceful' way), which can be problematic at times, given this type of background. These characters will have to endure hard times, and they won't be able to stand that alone.
While the story is depressing and angsty at times, hope is not lost - which is a main topic as well, just like in "Lord of the Rings". Episodes 1 and 2 introduce Katsumi and present some hints about the storyline background; episodes 3-5 and 8-9 show how Katsumi becomes an AMP member; episodes 6, 7, 10 and 11 provide the background stories of the other AMP members. Then the stage is set - from episode 12 on the main show begins (and my episode reviews end, because of that).
This is my number one anime absolutely, so don't expect me to be fair in some details (Katsumi will do things on occasion that you aren't given an explanation for ... she just seems to remember anyhow. And don't try to make sense from the 'scientific' explanations ...). You see, I don't give it a set of 10s, although this is second to no other for me ... its value for me lies in the characters, their fates and their relations, the story is great, I didn't find any filler episode, and the musical score is truely awesome (Kindan no Panse, Golden Unicorn, The Creation, The Hope, The Perplexity, ...). Even the main opponent is more than just "your usual bad guy" - there are scenes I almost cried for him as well.
If you like Evangelion, then give this one a try - it will give you a story with less open questions and more plausible (nonetheless interesting) characters, yet focus on similar issues. But then, there is a reason why I selected "Romance" from the keyword list, which I certainly wouldn't do for NGE ... and this is something that makes Silent Möbius the unique anime to me that it is. This one is like "the best of both worlds" (watch the show and you'll understand the pun ;-). And if you're into epics like Lodoss Wars or Escaflowne, then you may find something of value here as well.
One problem is that episode 26 doesn't end the story line like the manga did. It took me some time to search the web for some English transcription of the Japanese mangas, which do contain some equivalent of "episode 27" that answers much more questions than those different NGE endings do, for example (see "episode 27" link above, but beware of spoilers!) But even without that, episode 26 is a some kind of valid ending, just like episode 24 would be for Love Hina - it would work fine even if nothing followed.
Two prequel movies, Silent Mobius The Movie 1 (from 1991) and Silent Mobius The Movie 2 (from 1992) exist besides this 26 episodes TV series from 1998; both are somehow rewriting the first three episodes and fill up certain aspects of the story line (what did really happen to Katsumi's mother?), but they don't match this series at all.
The manga tells almost the same story but in a very different order of events, starting with the side stories to introduce the characters (which became the signature episodes for them during the second quarter of the anime) and forming a story line only later in the process; the manga was far from being completed when the anime series was aired. As such the story development is even more confusing in the manga for quite a while. Then again, the manga has some additional background information plus a real ending where the anime has only an announcement of the final battle. My comparison between manga and anime can be found in the episode sections of this show.
Last updated Monday, January 23 2012. Created Sunday, June 08 2003.
|Silent Möbius site at Bandai||http://silentmobius.bandai-ent.com/|