Guilty Crown – 06

[Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_05.35_[2011.11.17_18.40.47] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_15.14_[2011.11.17_18.50.26] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_20.09_[2011.11.17_18.55.20]

Guilty Crown still inhabits that vast middle ground between mediocrity and genuine quality, with only its sublime visuals to set it apart from the crowd.

The best thing about the sixth episode was probably that Gai’s “death” wasn’t milked for false drama – it was literally revealed in the first minute of the episode that he was still alive.  Of course everyone that was with him was killed, including Kyo (she was dead as soon as she flashed the “live long and prosper” sign last week) but that hardly matters, since even the main characters in GC are basically ciphers.  Everyone else is pretty much that guy in the away team you’ve never seen before so you know he’s going to be the first to die.

As much as I try and muster some genuine enthusiasm for this series, it’s just not coming.  I don’t dislike it and I still find it somewhat entertaining, but I’m surprised that a respectably talented creative team like this one hasn’t been able to move past the purely derivative.  Director Araki and writer Hiroyuki have a good but not great track record, though, and the difference between their storytelling skills and that of the creative guys behind UN-GO is becoming more stark every week.  Every episode of GC feels like a rerun to me, at least so far, because I’ve seen all these characters before and I can’t think of a single instance in which the series has surprised me in any meaningful way.

In reality, probably the most potentially interesting element of the series is the xenophobic political drama it seems to want to tell, though it never quite gets around to it.  I’m not too concerned with Shu, Inori or Gai at this point because none of them feels like a real person.  Shu turning tail and running from the strategy session made me wince, although I never doubted for a minute that he’d agree to Gai’s plan.  Gai himself is taking on the tortured hero role, crushed under the weight of the expectations of the kids in Undertaker despite feeling he doesn’t deserve their adoration.  Whatever his physical problem is we don’t know yet, but in his own way Gai’s self-pity is almost more extreme than Shu’s.  His speeches are certainly more overwrought.  Gai’s Christianity was certainly highlighted strongly this week, laying on the martyr vibes even thicker.

I’d like to say that Sakai injects some life into the show, and his scenes do tend to pop at least a little.  But he’s himself a pretty played out character, lacking only a mustache to twirl while he laughs maniacally.  It can’t have been a shock to discover that the pen he gave Shu was a fully functioning listening device, and that by pressing it Shu would have succeeded only in calling down the Leukocyte unto the heads of Undertaker.  But Sakai was realistic enough to at least cut a deal with Gai rather than see Tokyo destroyed by the falling Leukocyte.  As for Inori, she’s as gorgeous a character as I’ve seen in anime in many a year, but somehow even she starts to lose me when she starts talking.  There’s just no context to anything she says or does – even with an enigma like Ayanmi Rei, we were given glimpses inside her psyche almost from the beginning that prevented her from being a total blank.  Not so with Inori, who’s just a beautiful character design reading a script.  Though we saw no signs this week, I’m hopeful that Kenji might at last provide some spark.  Okamoto Nobuhiko, a nation turns its lonely eyes to you…

I take consolation in the fact that Guilty Crown has at least been fairly consistent, and consistently watchable at that.  As well, that there are still quite a few cards left to be played.  There’s the full nature of the plot GHQ is hatching with the Leukocytes, still unknown, and we haven’t even scratched the surface of the potential drama involving Shu’s mother and how she relates to his new situation.  Indeed, there’s been shockingly little heard from Shu on the subject of his family, leading one to assume they mean very little to him.  Basically, I’m going to need some of these seedlings to start bearing fruit if I’m going to last for 22 episodes with this one because what we’ve seen so far isn’t enough to keep me hooked for that long.

[Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_05.07_[2011.11.17_18.40.09] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_06.44_[2011.11.17_18.41.56] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_08.52_[2011.11.17_18.44.03]
[Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_10.27_[2011.11.17_18.45.39] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_10.41_[2011.11.17_18.45.53] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_11.14_[2011.11.17_18.46.25]
[Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_12.48_[2011.11.17_18.48.00] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_13.24_[2011.11.17_18.48.36] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_14.11_[2011.11.17_18.49.22]
[Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_14.23_[2011.11.17_18.49.34] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_17.03_[2011.11.17_18.52.15] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_17.39_[2011.11.17_18.52.50]
[Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_19.08_[2011.11.17_18.54.19] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_21.00_[2011.11.17_18.56.12] [Commie] Guilty Crown - 06 [88FE8145].mkv_snapshot_22.10_[2011.11.17_18.57.22]


  1. Z

    The main problem with this series is that we are only given an absolute minimum amount of information about anyone or anything. Everyone's decisions are based only on emotions, as there are not facts to consider. Funeral Parlor's recruitment pitch consisted of calling the GHQ bad guys, so join us. Shu was sold for the cause after he got to punch Gai in the face.

    The upside is that it leaves more time for action scenes and it obviously makes it easy for watchers to remember the few things needed to keep up.

    A problem is that with a total absence of rational thought so does it require emotional involvement to be captivating. This is somewhat accomplished with the stunning visuals, but it really needs to make the characters a bit more likeable.

    It's somewhat interesting that we actually got another series this season that is basically the opposite of this one: Kyoukai Senjou no Horizon. There we have an almost overwhelming amount of facts like names, relationships, politics, history, mystical powers, economics, factions etc.

  2. A

    I wouldn't call Horizon the opposite: I think that it's just avoiding most of the mistakes that Guilty Crown is making. The characters are interesting and understandable, but not flat. The story has a direction. You get foreshadowing that's not so hyper-obvious.

    But it doesn't necessarily mess up what Guilty Crown does get right: Horizon's visuals are nothing to scoff at.

  3. d

    @Guardian Enzo
    I agree with you on the characters because it just doesn't feel like any of them have a vested interest with what they are doing. I'll bring up Code Geass since both are similar. For example, with Lelouch we had a good understanding why he wanted to do what he did. The rebellion had a goal or at least a direction it was taking. As far as I can understand Funeral Parlor doesn't have one beyond the "rebel against the establishment". There was little to no info as to why any of the characters are doing what they are doing other than they are in a rebel group and that's what rebel groups do.

  4. I can't disagree with any of the comments above. The word for the characters and situations here, I think, is generic. It's like those cans of beer that hit grocery stores in the 90's that just said "Beer" in black letters on a white background.

  5. Z

    I am fan of Horizon so I didn't mean it was opposite in every way nor bad, just how it is full of information about everything while Guilty Crown basically leaves everything as a mystery. Not that there aren't also mysteries in Horizon.

    A good example is battle preparation. Cuilty Crown, the leader informs everyone that he has a plan with everything taken into account. That's it, no actual details, we wasn't even get told that the target was a Satellite until after it fired.

    In Horizon, none was willing to just agree to fight without knowing more details, despite everyone being quite involved personally. Then we have a discussion about the problem of getting hold of food and the effects their actions or inactions would have on economics. And that is just the beginning of the complications.

    I see it as two opposite extreme cases of storytelling.

  6. m

    Its so much fun playing 'Guess which anime Guilty Crown copied this week' every episode~ This week was Gundam Wing with the whole colony drop drama along with a sprinkling of Gundam 00 Lockon style sniping.

    The technical jargon in this show is still ridiculous and suspension of disbelief is impossible. Visuals would be too, but well it is so very very pretty.

  7. In defense of GC… Every mecha series this century copies either Evangelion or Gundam to some extent. They all do it, it's just a question of how much. This show sort of copies both.

  8. b

    >He survives a satellite weapon with just scratches and bruises(and his bishie looks intact) while everything within a 3 mile radius(?) is burning.
    >He can take down an Endlave with a freaking handgun.
    >He even knows about the pen and plans to use it to blow up himself and the falling satellite despite everyone of his mates is still in the vicinity and not even warning them about it.
    …*facepalm*. Who is this guy anyway?

    I didnt get into the hype of this show before Fall started since my attention was in F/Z. And I'd say it's not living up to it. Even with MAL forums being alive with discussion I cant say Im into it. It's not really gripping to me. Still I'm watching it till the end. Gonna be a long two cour even with only 22eps.

  9. L

    Enzo I call this I'm so not into you: *snaps figures*
    Guilty Crown when I first saw you I thought you had personally and that we would make something special together. The way you presented yourself was enough to make me gaze.
    As I got to know you I thought this is a rough start but if we work together we can make it work. But as time went on I realized that you were cold, boring, and unappealing and that I had to face facts this was not going to work.
    But its ok baby girl even though we will part ways there are other people who are willing to give you a chance and will stay with you hoping for change.
    Well let me tell you baby girl people change in order to make a relationship work for the better not for the worst. People around you are changing hoping…hoping….that you will change and I hope you learn to grow with them but baby as for me…
    I'm so not into you *snaps figures*

  10. F


    I knew this episode wasn't going to be worth the time, which is why I'm only just getting around to it now.

    I couldn't even muster up the desire to watch it to join the hate-on.

    And SRSLY Enzo, you should watch Horizon to see a show do something like this right.

  11. m


    Since I haven't watched Horizon forgive me if I sound ignorant but isn't the general consensus that Horizon is the most convoluted, nigh incomprehensible, fanservice-filled mess of many a seasons? Technically, GC is like that too (the 'science', especially, cause me to wince) but at least its a straightforward mess.

  12. F

    Horizon actually requires you to pay attention to what is going on. Unlike GC, everything that happens in Horizon happens for a reason, and characters act the way they do for logical, understandable reasons. (well, their personal logic at least…)

    But its not going to hold your hand. Things that were offhandedly referenced in episode 2 will become vitally important in episodes 5 and 6. Its not a show you can turn your brain off for.

    It has a huge number of characters, a backstory that is admittedly hard to wrap your brain around, and a somewhat spastic sense of humor, but its a far, far better show on every level than Guilty Fucking Crown.

  13. N

    I am actually more interested what future episodes will be about. This is a 22 episodes long series yet its fast pacing makes me think that at half-point something important will happen. The Gai&Shu relationship reminds me strongly of certain relationships from other Anime… the ones where friends/comrades turn into bitter enemies.

  14. I kinda hope so – that'd be interesting.

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