First Impressions: Steins;Gate

Maybe I’m being a little easier on Stein’s Gate than I should be, but I do love coincidences, especially those that involve me.  With Hanasaku Iroha it was the obaa-san with the candy, here it’s the fact that much of the episode – including the critical moment of it – takes place in the Radio Kaikan building just outside the Akihabara JR station, and I just happen to have spend a good chunk of my day there before heading to the airport.  This is a pretty lovingly detailed re-creation of Akiba including, I might add, the actual names of the stores depicted like K-Boooks and Kyodan.  Not to mention, I’m sure there’s a litte check in exchange for the Dr. Pepper plug.

It’d be as easy to guess what happened there from the series descriptions as from the episode itelf, which was rather cryptic.  Mad scientist (self-described) Houoin and his assistant Miyori are the focus of the first episode.  It features quite a bit of snappy humor, a good deal of intrigue, and even a few quasi-science lessons.  The actual events – a news conference on timt travel that may or may not have happened, a mysterious satellite crashing into Kaikan, etc. – are secondary for now, as there isn’t even to really form a working theory yet.  There’s certainly some time travel involved but beyond that it anyone’s guess.

Altogether I found that enjoyable, pretty well-paced and somewhat smart in the delivery.  I could easily see this show getting full of itself and jumping the shark, but one suspects there’s a very specific story to tell here and that will hopefully keep things on the straight and narrow.

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