Hello everybody! For this week’s anime club we go ahead and join the sadistic Monobear in Danganronpa: The Animation.
DANGANRONPA: THE ANIMATION
CREATED BY: Seiji Kishi
NO. OF EPISODES: 13
GENRE: Murder Mystery
The series revolves around the elite high school, Hope’s Peak Academy which, every year, selects several “Ultimate” students, talented high school students who are in the top of their field, along with one average “Ultimate Lucky Student” who is chosen by lottery.
In Danganronpa: The Animation Makoto Naegi, an average student selected to join Hope’s Peak Academy, arrives at the school only to lose consciousness and later find himself trapped inside the school, along with fourteen other students. There, a sadistic remote-controlled teddy bear by the name of Monokuma announces that the students will be forced to live in the school forever, offering only one way to graduate: murder another student and get away with it. When a crime scene is discovered, a “class trial” is held, in which the remaining students must discuss amongst themselves who the murderer is. If they can successfully figure out who murdered the victim, the culprit alone will be executed. However, if they guess incorrectly, the culprit will be able to leave the school and everyone else will be executed.
Danganronpa has to be one of the more “interesting” series I have watched in a long time. After finishing off perhaps my favorite anime of the year so far (Death Parade) I accidentally stumbled upon Danganronpa. In comparison to the video game, Danganronpa actually has a very video game aesthetic look in many scenes, the class trials in particular. The mysteries are incredibly well thought out, as I love trying to solve the mysteries before the characters and I couldn’t for the most part. The main core group of characters, I would say 6 out of 12, are interesting. In a series like this, you have to accept that most of the characters are just cannon fodder. The animation is key here, as it changes each time a murderer is figured out, almost degrading as the character is losing their life. Utterly fantastic.
While I did enjoy Danganronpa very much, there were some issues that stuck in my mind, even now as I am writing this. Without going into spoiler territory, there are some instances during the “Class Trials” that bother me as a mystery enthusiast. Danganronpa falls dangerously into the “character brings to light key evidence at an opportune time” trope. I understand that it is decent writing if done correctly, but it still bothers me to the bitter end. Oh, did I mention the cannon fodder. Beyond maybe 6 characters, I did not care what would happen to them sorry.
- Video game aesthetic.
- Well thought out mysteries.
- Interesting main core characters.
- Animation changes.
- Cannon fodder characters.
- Trial tropes.
SCORE: 8.5 / 10
If you have any suggestions for films/TV/Games/Music/Anime for me to review, drop me a comment!
All check out my lengthier video game reviews over at Nerd Bacon Games.