One of the best animations I´ve ever watched. Yeah, I could start with that. But I´m going start delving into another topic first.
If there´s an overused and dare I say, abused, trope in all science fiction, it has to be time travel. One have the nagging fear that as always it will be used in a way that will leave many plot holes and unanswered questions in the air. It will leave us with more doubts than before the concept was introduced in the show, and it will overall be a mess.
Not with Steins;Gate though.
This anime show is, dare I say the word, awesome. One of the very best stories in 'anime' form that I have ever laid eyes upon.
I have this thing with anime, I´m searching for more adult oriented versions of the stuff, with serious content, with more than just cool fight scenes and action extravaganzas. Those are ok a bit, if you have a context that requires them, first and foremost. Take the likes of Neon Genesis Evangelion and its (R)rebuild. It´s one of the best pieces of art of the anime medium as a whole. Why? Adult and serious content. Yes, we still have the colors, some quirky (very, very few of those the more serious a series get) moments, but that´s it. I enjoy the animations I know that could be, you know, translated into live action motion pictures, if there was a need to. Thankfully, it doesn´t, so we can enjoy it in the animation style that can be so fluid and beautiful.
One such example of serious anime is Steins;Gate. And not because we have gore, or blood everywhere, and also not because we have sex everywhere, in the form of hentai or fanservice or any exploitation of any sort. It´s adult in the "noblest" sense of the world, of dealing with mature themes. Also we have a story who delves into hard science fiction territory through the use of the loops and twists that happen because of the tinkering of the time lines (to be a bit jerky, I was expecting a bit more of exposition on what the creators have in their sleeves about time travel being at least plausible in the world of Steins;Gate, but other than some references to Kerr black holes, and some references to LHC (Large Hadron Collider), we have nothing of the like - not that it takes away from the show in any way, it´s just a minor critique).
But what a damn fine show it is. And not only because of the themes and the decent, interesting use of the time travel concept.
The characters... oh, the characters! They are all interesting in some way or another, starting with our protagonist, Rintarou Okabe. He is the leading man, (get this!) a self-proclaimed mad scientist, a guy who walks around in a lab coat all the freaking time, and created a lab out of an apartment in which he and his companions spend time inventing gadgets for the betterment of mankind! Can there be a better start to a story? That´s a rhetorical, but you get my point.
We have our typical - or what it passes for typical - story of a somewhat delusional individual who spends time with his friends, until, you know, shit hits the fan. But we have no gimmicks here, we don´t have action extravaganzas, we don´t have a kung fu master hidden beneath the guise of the lab coat. What you see is exactly what you get, and that entails a physics abiding universe (well, almost) not many animations series are known to share.
Sometimes, the anime may feel like stalling, slowing its pace, and it does get somewhat slow in the beginning and right until episode 18 or 19. After that it´s all downhill struggle to try and set things right, and I got quite satisfied with the resolution, because it is done so well, and so full of wit and charm.
The animation itself is beautiful. Steins;Gate is simply a classic.
Don´t waste your chance of watching it, if you have one. This is good stuff. Definitely recommended.
Rating - 5 crows!