Home > Check-in Station > Check-in Station: Deadman Wonderland eps 1 – 7 (like watching a model fall)

Check-in Station: Deadman Wonderland eps 1 – 7 (like watching a model fall)

I love and hate the 80’s at the same time.  It’s a great source of nostalgia and embarrassment for me.  Though it’s not nearly as embarrassing as it probably was for those who were adults at the time.  That said, I enjoy it when a show gets that nostalgia factor just right.  Deadman Wonderland may not be purposely trying to draw out that factor for me, but it sure appears like it’s trying.  I just wish it didn’t try so hard.  It’s getting awkward.

If I remember right, Deadman Wonderland is a show that I that I had a decent amount of hope for.  I tend to like things that are grim and dark.  “Grimdark” if you will.  If people die (and don’t come back to life through the power of magic fairy dust or laziness), then I’m a generally happy guy.  Maybe I’m getting soft as I get older, but there is a limit though.  Most of the time, the murder and violence has to make some level of sense.  Deadman Wonderland?  Not so much.  You have to wonder why the brutal murder of prisoners, death row or not, can be so easily sanctioned.  I can’t help but wonder why an institution that goes to great lengths to acquire these supernaturals …these Deadmen, can put them in harm’s way on a daily basis.  The events in this prison become extremely strange, sick cockfights or strange forms of torture.  It’s quite insane and over the top and I’m not sure I’ve gotten used to it up to this point.

I do get some enjoyment out of the show though.  I don’t watch the show constantly banging my head against a wall wishing some of this wasn’t so damn stupid.  I do like certain aspects of the show.

When the faces of these characters don’t get hilariously warped by their insanity, then the animation is quite good.  And in a strange way I do get off on the plot and character insanity.  The highlight so far of course being Minatsuki.  I suppose the scene where we see her mother abandon her was supposed to be dramatic, cruel and heart-wrenching.  In reality, they all flew out the window when her mother decided to instead of saving the little girl, pick up a random potted flower.  It’s that kind of stuff.  The hilarious stupidity in the most intense or depressing situations that gives me a weird sense of enjoyment watching this show.

I’m really on the fence with this show.  On one hand, it’s painful.  Ganta’s self-loathing and whining bugs me.  The somewhat overwrought shounen elements in this show do not impress me (“fight an enemy, make a friend”).  The logic behind this show is near nil.  And I hate the opening theme song .  On the other hand, I find myself laughing and smiling almost as much as nearly barfing or reeling from the violence.  It’s fun to watch in spite of itself.  Sort of like watching a model fall on the catwalk, it takes the beauty of the best laid out plans and intentions and drops it all to the floor; with unintentionally hilarious and entertaining results.  I’ll keep watching this show for a bit longer.  Hell by the end of this I may even recommend it… to my ultra violence loving American anime friends.

Further Reading:

  • Unmei Kaihen: Shinmaru sums up the reasons to continue watching the comedy of errors pretty well.
  • Anime Vision: the spur of the moment reactions & quips to this episode are pretty funny.
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