Gantz – Anime Review

Japanese Title: Gantz

 

Related: Gantz: Second Stage (sequel – included in review)

Similar: Elfen Lied

Btooom!

Deadman Wonderland

Watched in: Japanese & English

Genre: Gore Action Horror Science Fiction

Length: 13 episodes (S1) & 13 episodes (S2)

 

Positives:

  • It ends.

Negatives:

  • Single. Character. Is shit.
  • Sliding animations everywhere.
  • Gory action that puts one to sleep.
  • No understanding of humans and emotions.
  • Awful script forces weak acting.
  • Music that made me watch on mute with subtitles for parts.
  • No attempts at explaining the lore.

Welcome to the worst anime I have ever seen. Gantz, what a load of arse gravy. Arse gravy as a result of gutter burritos and beer made from the Yangtze River all right before one stumbles into the service station to destroy the restroom. I hate this anime. I rarely hate any piece of art, no matter how poor its quality. But Gantz, this is a special kind of atrocity.

Gantz is anime’s attempt at the SAW franchise, where gore and violence replace plot and effort. Yet, even SAW, a series I have no praise for, is a masterpiece compared to this.

Gantz starts with protagonist Kei in class as he imagines every girl and his teacher naked, resulting in a pitched tent. They make fun of him when he stands to answer a question. He is the typical “edgy” teen, who thinks he knows how the world works and the realities of life – we know this because oftentimes we listen to his internal commentary on a scene. A teen that thinks he knows everything is nothing new; however, the narrative takes him seriously. The garbage he believes is how the world works in Gantz. When a vagabond falls onto the train track, Kei says no one would save him from the train, which is utter rubbish, but this being Gantz, no one wants to help (we go into the minds of several onlookers, all making excuses not to help). Eventually, Kei’s childhood friend Kato jumps down, roping Kei into the rescue as well. They save the vagabond, but the train hits them in the process.

I need to back up a moment – this scene is so bad it exemplifies all that is wrong in Gantz. After they lift the vagabond onto the platform, they can hear the train coming in the distance. They have several minutes before the train arrives, and yet they can’t climb back onto the platform; this would be no more difficult than climbing out of a swimming pool, especially with dozens of people willing to pull them up (the onlookers pulled up the vagabond). Instead, they choose to run the length of the platform in the hope of outrunning the train’s brakes. They run for several minutes, easily enough to clear the station (or hell, just climb up!), but are still crushed by the train. My disbelief is only so flexible. I got the impression that Kei’s idiotic thoughts mirror that of the talentless creator, hence why he is “right” in this world.

After Kei’s head flies off, rather than pass on, he wakes up in a room with several strangers, also recently deceased, and a metal sphere called Gantz. He, Kato, and the others have somehow been chosen to participate in a game where they hunt aliens each night for points. Earn enough points and you revive. In the meantime, they live in a limbo-like state and death here means no third chance.

The cast largely consists of scum with a few innocents mixed in, everyone as flat as a character can be. We learn one of them is a corrupt politician, so all he does is act like a clichéd corrupt politician. A rapist yakuza goes full rapist yakuza with no variation. Kei is nothing more than an edgy, sex-obsessed teen, never revealing an ounce of depth. Oh, and the sex, bloody hell… It is so awkward, so…pointless, so pathetic. If you ever saw a censored version of Gantz, you wouldn’t know anything was cut.

The action is equally pathetic. With not a single intelligent or likeable character in the bunch, I wanted nothing more than for aliens to slaughter them all, get the show over with in three episodes. You know how every Hollywood disaster or horror film has that one idiot whose sole purpose is to put the group in jeopardy, otherwise the group would walk out unharmed because they aren’t idiots? Well, in Gantz, the whole group is that idiot multiplied. Ah yes, there is this girl – she’s on the cover – cannot remember her name, pink-haired, a main character, supposedly; she does nothing other than get licked downtown by a dog several times – no one stops it.

If Gantz had gone for comedy or parody of the gore genre, it may have had a modicum of entertainment value. The writer’s greatest mistake was taking the ridiculous dialogue and events seriously. Gantz tries to be deep as a commentary on the human condition – I have never seen a story miss the truth so much.

Art – Low

Animation layers are noticeable – characters look like Paper Mario stickers – especially during rotation shots. Foreground and background gore is inconsistent. No creativity.

Sound – Very Low

Atrocious script, which the otherwise great actors couldn’t salvage. I feel they knew the dialogue was rubbish, as they goof many lines. The ear-grating opening theme sets the tone for the terrible music.

Story – Very Low

Wants to be SAW. Fails. How? Pathetic characters, no intelligence, awkward sex, and boring violence.

Overall Quality – Very Low

Recommendation: Shoot on sight. Gantz has no redeemable quality, not even as a gore film. Honestly, how do you botch a gore story?

(Request reviews here. Find out more about the rating system here.)

 

Awards: (hover mouse over each award to see descriptions; click award for more recipients)

Positive: None

Negative:

Atrocious PlotAwful DialogueEar Grating Voice WorkHollow World BuildingHorrendous ActionInduces StupidityNo DevelopmentRepetitiveRubbish Major CharactersShallowTorture MusicUgly Artistic DesignUseless Side Cast

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