I’m a fan of dark themes and have been craving an anime with them lately. When I’m talking about dark themes I’m talking about when bad things happen in stories and there is no happy ending or undo button when all hope is gone and it takes a real struggle to obtain anything. When actions have consequences and the world can’t be saved with hopes and dreams. Too bad there is no anime like this or at least not very many recently.
Dark themes are an odd thing and very hard for me to define because when I think of dark themes Death Note comes to mind but even that isn’t a very good example. Well okay it’s a pretty good example because it’s about death but the main focus isn’t on death but the detective side of things. After that an anime called Sora no Woto comes to mind and anyone who knows what that is is probably thinking I’m crazy but it’s only one thing about that story that makes me say that. The adults of the story all have very dark and depressing back stories which are hidden behind smiles and moe. It’s a unique thing which I suddenly crave and I know it’s because most of the time dark themes go hand in hand with good story telling.
That is unless you are talking about anime and in the case of anime dark themes go hand in hand with stupid things like hyper violence, action horror, sex or god forbid moe with anime like Deadman Wonderland, Shiki, Rin Daughters of Mnemosyne and Another hinting at potential dark themes but then smearing their ridiculous second trait all over it and ruining the potential. I can’t say exactly what I want from a dark anime but it sure isn’t this and the only reason I can’t say is because I’ve never seen an anime that delivers dark themes effectively as it’s main focus.
Full Metal Alchemist, Steins;Gate and Neon Genesis Evangelion all kind of touch base on this but are fall into that category I mentioned earlier which is filled with hopes and dreams. It’s all too easy for the protagonist to train or grow as a person before facing their ultimate challenge and then they win like you expected them to. It’s that unpredictable element I’m searching for and not finding in current anime but I wonder if I’m the only one looking for this kind of thing. Surely not because I’m pretty sure nobody liked Deadman Wonderland. *Cough* It seems I’m coughing up blood just thinking about that awful anime.