Pet Shop of Horrors is one of those anime that sounds like it would be worth watching. Honestly, I wasn’t too impressed. I do plan on reading the manga at some point because I do like the character, Count D, but the anime is far from appealing.
It’s an OVA that only has four episodes. With every contract Count D makes, there are three rules. They always include that they are never to show the creature to anyone and if they break any part of the contract, there are bad consequences.
The first, is about a couple who lost their daughter. They go to Count D, an androgynous pet shop owner, who gives them a rabbit. This rabbit is very rare and looks just like Alice, their daughter. The second episode is about a singer who falls overboard a ship during her wedding to her manager, Jason. Jason goes to Count D and is given a pet, a mermaid that looks just like his late wife. The third is about an actor whose every role is the same type. His wife leaves him and he become reclusive and spends all his time with the reptiles he loves. Count D gives him a rare species, a Medusa, that is half beautiful woman and half deadly reptile. The fourth is about a politician who is seeking a Kirin. Kirin grant wishes of their owner with others blood.
Each case is about how the contracts are breached. There is a detective who is trying to connect these strange occurrences to the pet shop. His name is Leon Orcot. Other than information about the characters who take on contracts with the pet shop, there’s no other information that you receive. Count D is a very interesting character. You want to know everything about him. Where did he come from, why is he here, and exactly how old is he? Leon Orcot loves to stick his nose in everything, which is why I usually don’t like the detective characters, but it’s his role.
The Count is such a mysterious character. I really do wish I knew more about him. Once I read the manga, I’ll definitely do a review so that I can tell you about him. Perhaps the OVA wouldn’t be so bad for someone who has already read the first manga and knows a little more about it, but it does absolutely nothing for someone who hasn’t.
As far as music and voices, they are incredibly forgettable. They aren’t horrible, but their also not good. Everything is just so-so. The only good thing that I can say about this anime is that it does get you interested in the Count and you’ll want to read the manga to find out more. Other than that, harshly put, it’s crap. Save your time with the OVA and just go straight to the manga. The manga is 10 volumes, but there is a secondary manga called New Pet Shop of Horrors, or Pet Shop of Horrors – Tokyo, which is 8 volumes.
Overall: 5 out of 10
Elfen Lied is a very psychological anime and contains a lot of graphic violence (blood and gore). There is near nudity throughout the series, therefore, it’s for mature audiences only.
This anime has so much meaning behind the story. It deals with a mutant species called Diclonius, which look like humans, but have two horns on their head called “vectors.” These vectors are telekinetic arms that extend out certain distances, which is different for each Diclonius, and can cut, grab, crush, and kill whatever it wants. The main character is a girl named Lucy who, as a child, was shunned by humans because of her horns. Because of the torment, she is seeking revenge against all humans.
Lucy escapes from an experimental facility, Kanagawa Prefecture, and is injured causing her personalities to split. Nyu, the child-like form of Lucy, is her counter personality. Kohta and Yuka, cousins, find the girl on a beach and take her home. A Special Assault Team is sent out to retrieve her as well as other Diclonius. Kohta developes a close relationship with Lucy/Nyu, but there’s a dark secret. He has forgotten his memories from his childhood; he no longer remembers anything about how his family was killed. However, Lucy does know.
Elfen Lied deals with a lot of topics such as prejudice, alienation, forgiveness, humility, and so much more. It causes you to really think about whose side your on. At times, you’ll hate the Diclonius for what they do, but other times, you understand their hardships and have pity for them. Every character changes from how they were at the beginning. I can’t think of one character who doesn’t grow in some way.
Even though, it’s only a 13 episode anime, it ends very well and doesn’t leave any bad loose ends. Other reviews say that the ending is too abrupt and is full of loose ends. I disagree. If you follow the series well enough and put some things together on your own, which is the purpose of the psychological genre, then the ending makes sense. The loose ends, for me, were good ones that keeps you thinking about what happened. They aren’t ones that will cause you to be angry.
The music is exquisite. The opening song, Lilium by Noma Kumiko, and the ending song, Be Your Girl by Chieko Kawabe, really fit with the anime and the theme. There is a corresponding manga, however, the anime series was created before the manga was finished causing mass differences between the two. The manga is 12 volumes. This is an anime that both I, a female who loves supernatural romance and more realistic anime, and my husband, a male who enjoys more of the action and adventure anime, loved. I’d recommend it to anyone…as long as you can withstand the gore.
Overall: 9 out of 10