Themes in Japanese Animation

Paranoia Agent

Paranoia Agent is a Japanese animated TV series that ran in the year 2004. The show revolves about a young boy, Shounen Bat, who always wears roller skates and an MLB cap and roams the streets of Tokyo beating up people and smashing their heads in with his golden baseball bat, terrorizing especially homeless, young and old people. These savage attacks spur a Tokyo Police investigation, headed by a ruthless detective who obsesses with the crimes and tries desperately to find a pattern in order to solve these violent crimes. The tone of the series can actually be quite dark, scary and violent, also full of mystery and suspense.

Boogiep37216229_468_boogiepop_phantomop Phantom

Boogiepop Phantom is a Japanese animated TV show that aired in the year 2000. Inexplicable events have been taking place at a Japanese high school in a small town and no one seems to know what it is that is happening. Strange disappearances, creatures with mystic powers and violent murders involving teenage kids who have always seemed completely normal are being reported. A popular element of Japanese mythology is mentioned or used in Boogiepop Phantom, namely a Shinigami (which means Angel of Death), who has been sighted. Themes and genres involved in and that can be associated to this series are for example, horror, mystery, violence, psychological thriller.

Ghost in the Shell

Ghost in the Shell is a Japanese animated film released in 1995, which appeals to lovers of themes and elements such as sci-fi, cyborg, cyberpunk, noir, detective stories, hackers etc. It revolves around an elusive hacker who is known as “Puppet Master”. His aim is to create havoc in the society by erasing people’s memories and replacing them with something else. He is accused of being evil but some claim he is a genius due to having created cyborgs.