May 18, 2012

Anime Review: ChäoS;HEAd

ChäoS;HEAd tries to be different than everyone else but this experimental anime fell apart too quickly after the first couple of episodes. It was a good idea but was poorly executed. It will cause chaos in your head.


Shibuya, Japan, 2008. Takumi Nishijou, a high school student at the Private Suimei Academy, one day hears about the 'New Gen' murders that have been occurring around the city. Although dismissing the subject because it doesn't involve him, Takumi begins to experience strange mishaps around him, from a horrific picture he recieved while on his PC, to a mysterious Pink-Haired girl standing at a murder scene.

From there on Takumi struggles to cope with the events unfolding around him, and is soon unaware of what is real or a delusion. As his fate is opens up before him, the perpertrator behind the 'New Gen' events attempts to find him, leading him into a world where nothing is as it seems.


I wonder how ChäoS;HEAd would have rated if only the story was executed properly. Perhaps we would have understood the situation a bit more and connected with the characters more closely. However, what has been done has been done; and we are left with a messy plate to deal with. The start was captivating and interesting; unfortunately that quickly fell apart. We see Takumi Nishijou is basically a otaku living by himself and doesn't care about anything or anyone around him. Just living in the delusions. One day, that carefree life ends as mysterious 'New Gen' murders start happening all around him. After that he gets a random horrific picture sent to him and he goes to investigate and meets a mysterious Pink-Haired girl at the murder scene. After the initial shock followed by more incidents and incomprehensible delusions, somehow the main characters obtain "D-Swords" that are invisible to people. Random right? It gets even messier here as somehow Takumi Nishijou is actually a delusion himself of another him. In the end, the world is controlled by delusions and is up to the main characters to stop some evil organisation and save the world. That's pretty much the story. Pretty confusing and incomprehensible. The lack of cohesion between scenes and relationships between characters ruined the story. Too many plot holes and unexplained details made this anime too messy to watch. The action was good though if you discard the story.

The art was rather excellent in my opinion apart from the characters. The characters were rather generic and lacked fine detail. However, the background art and environments were well illustrated. The "D-Swords" looked pretty good as well. In the end, to keep you going to the end try focusing more on the art and action and not on the story itself. Since this anime was set in Shibuya I had some nostalgic moments related to the Nintendo DS game "The World Ends With You". Some elements were similar such as the central crossing, the shops and the various places that the anime features.

ChäoS;HEAd's soundtrack and background music was not bad. The theme songs were quite catchy with some nice beats to it. Character voice acting was well done and I could figure out some popular voice actors from other animes. Sound effects and vocal performances also highlight various sequences. Basically it was decent enough to be enjoyed but not considered to be excellently composed.

If you lose focus in the story you can just focusing on the characters on hand. If you are a otaku you will come to understand and like Takumi. If you are not then you will probably think him as a loser or a wimp. Apart from Takumi there's a wide range of girls to choose from. Each have their own personalties and attitudes from cute to scary. Honourable mention to Rimi Sakihata; the girl who looks similar to Mirai Nikki's Yuno Gasai; or is it the other way around? Anyhow, both have pick hair, have psychological issues and have a dark secret. Perfect right? Moving on, the other characters were wuite entertaining indeed with their secret "D-Swords" and cool attitudes.

Overall, it was both a enjoyable and disappointing experience at the same time. I was disappointed at the story and character development. I liked the art, theme songs and the character themselves. In the end, I think it was a disaster from the start; whether it was a good or bad is really how you came to understand the anime. In my opinion, it was neither good nor bad.

Messy. Poorly executed.

ART: 6
Decently illustrated. The scenery was great but the characters lacked detail.

Theme songs were decent and voice acting was good. Rather generic.

The characters looked nice but rather I really don't understand why they were chosen to be the way they are.

Confusing. The action was decent to watch but the endless delusions really broke the story.

Perhaps watching this just for the fun of it might be worth your time.