Wednesday, June 27, 2012


 Episodes 1-4
Directed by Koichiro Hatsumi

     After being setup for the slaughter of his class and the soul survivor of the massacre, Ganta, is sent to a privately run prison in which the inmates are the performers of a bloody circus of death for the fun of the masses.

    It's been about a week plus since my last review, sorry about that to all that read this. So I had some time to think what I wanted to do next and I decided to review a complete series as the what's next for me. Those that have read what I've written know that I've done some reviews for anime titles before and this will be a good exorcise for later on this year when I review another full anime series as well. As for this set of reviews I decided to review the Japanese version of a series that is on air at the moment here in the U.S. That series is Deadman Wonderland as it is something different. Something more raw and savage. Each installment of the reviews for Deadman Wonderland will include four episodes as the whole series runs only twelve episodes. So without taking to much more of your time readers with my ramblings on to the review.


     As far as first episodes go, you have to grab the attention of the audience quickly to keep them involved in what they're trying to watch. In that regard Deadman Wonderland does that in spades as we're introduced to Igarashi Ganta with his friends at school talking about past times they have spent together and talking about a earthquake that destroyed Toyko ten years ago. It's at this point that a person wearing red armor and cape is seen floating outside the classroom window before the entire class is slaughtered in a matter of seconds by the smirking Red Man. Quickly Ganta is railroaded as being the cause of the slaughter and sent to the prison Deadman Wonderland with a death sentence. Once there Shiro, a mysterious albino girl is introduced and seemingly knows Shiro from when they were kids, though Ganta has no memory of this. At the end of the episode it is shown that Ganta has the same power that the red man does as it saves his and Shiro's life after an explosion goes off that was planted to kill Ganta. The first episode is fast moving without any pause except for when Shiro is introduced and snaps Ganta out of his depression. This one episode is one of the best first episodes I've seen in a long time due to that the character's emotions aren't hidden and no one person is seen as being flat or two dimensional but more rounded.


      Unlike the first episode, this one is slow starting as the environment Ganta is forced to live in is explained as Deadman Wonderland is more than just a Circus, but is more of a small city unto itself. We are also introduced to Takami Yo, another prisoner that has quick hands and a thief explains the ins and outs to Ganta and that to live everyone has to eat a antidote called candy for the poison that is slowly killing all the prisoners due to the collars the inmates wear. But to get "candy" the have to earn cast credits to buy more, and to do so the inmates have to work and perform for the amusement for the general public as this is a circus the live in. It is here that Ganta, Shiro and Yo  decide to enter one of the more extreme amusements, Dog Race. Seeing that Ganta is involved with this race both the warden, Makina, and Tsunenaga Tamiki who is the real force behind Deadman Wonderland pay close attention to see what he does. The friendship that starts to form between Ganta and Shiro is the main focus of the episode as Ganta sees that Shiro is trying to protect him no matter the cost. Because of this Ganta finds the will to live no matter what.


     Tsunenaga Tamiki, puts Yo in charge of keeping tabs on Ganta, is forced to witness the return of the redman. It turns out the redman goes by the name Wretched Egg and is kept at Deadman Wonderland in a state of suspended animation most of the time. As in before, destruction follows Wretched Egg as multiple prisoners are killed, yet this time there are survivors. Wretched Egg seems to show up just to see what Ganta would do and to test him. This is also the second time Ganta uses his powers that seem to flow from his wounds. In the aftermath, Ganta wakes up in the infirmary with Shiro by his side. It is here that Ganta learns that Wretched Egg is kept in G Block which is separate from the rest of the prison. With a direction to finally go in, Ganta and Shiro go in search of G Block with Yo being dragged along due to his bad timing. It is at this time Warden Makina views footage of Ganta using his powers and orders him to brought to her no matter what. The interesting part of this episode is that we find out that there is more going on at Deadman Wonderland than what is shown on the surface and that those that think they are in charge find out just how little power they truly have. Ganta and Shiro's friendship is also shown to grow more as Ganta is shown to start caring more for Shiro and how he would truly be lost without her.


     Finally finding G Block, Ganta is forced into a realizing that besides for him and Wretched Egg, there are others who have the same powers. The power is called Branches Of Sin and it depends on the users blood and each carrier of the virus has a different type. All this is explained to Ganta by Kiyomasa "Crow" Senji who calls Ganta "Woodpecker". Crow, also explains that people with these powers are referred to as Deadmen and that his fight with Ganta wasn't supposed to be until tomorrow yet doesn't mind that Ganta wants to fight today. Ganta at this point starts to learn how to use his powers and the cost of it. Before the fight can go on to long it is stopped by special forces that are kept at G Block. After waking up Ganta comes face to face with Tsunenaga Tamiki who explains that he was the one who got Ganta convicted of the slaughter of his class. Tamiki also explains that G Block is the true Deadman Wonderland which is fights between Branches Of Sin users called Carnival Corpse to the death or until one user cannot fight anymore. Tamiki also tells Ganta that he has his first fight the next day against Crow. Throughout this episode you see Ganta being beat down and broken because of what he finds out and the desperate situations he finds himself in all thanks to the sadistic nature of Tamiki, all for his enjoyment it seems.

     Razor runway multiple amputation.

      It may be crazy to you, but that's only because reality is absurd.

     Here's the lyrics to the song Shiro was singing when Ganta is first brought to Deadman Wonderland.

One mischievous little woodpecker
Today, poking your holes
Ruining the woods
The angry old forest god turned your beak into a poison knife
Poor little woodpecker
Your nesting holes are all tainted
Your food rife with toxins
If you touch your friends
They will all die
Oh, sad little woodpecker
Poisonous tears shining brightly
As they stream down you cheeks. 

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