Serial Experiments Lain and the style in which it was produced and directed are very experimental and impressionistic. This is rather innovative, since at the time, basically no anime had ever adopted such techniques; so one could say that the people behind Serial Experiments Lain can be considered to be sort of pioneers in terms of directing techniques in the world of animation.
Many people have pointed out the fact that it takes a lot of effort to watch this series, given its complexity and intricate narrative and it may leave viewers with a strange, frustrating feeling. People attribute this to the fact that arguments in Serial Experiments Lain are not entirely clear and there is a lot that is left up to suggestion and the viewer’s drawing their conclusions. Some people say that while watching Lain, they are engulfed by the mystery of the series as if drawn by some sort of masochistic compulsion.
Anime specialists have pointed out that Serial Experiments Lain’s central animation principles are drawn in a very specific way, making it unique in terms of drawing techniques as well. There are patches of dark red all over the pavement, giving the show an ominous feel. The use of the gray color also is significant, especially to depict people on the streets or commuters, hinting at their inability to connect with the real world around them. Like Ghost in the Shell; Lain recourses to show the many power lines hanging in the streets of the suburban Tokyo. They are unmistakably symbols, although it is unclear what they represent.
The sound in Serial Experiments Lain is also something worth analyzing; or rather, one might say the lack of sound, given the many seemingly endless moments of quiet that contribute to the eerie atmosphere of the show, although electronic music is heard throughout the show on several occasions.