‘Does God really exist?’

The most controversial question every asked by human kind. Howsoever simple it may sound, it is has been hotly debated for centuries, and even now, science is not sure about the answer. Setting aside the scientific aspect, it has provided a great scope for fictional works. It gives the author the liberty to think beyond the conceived rules of our universe and gets the readers hooked to the unimaginable.

The anime portrays a ‘high school’ in the world of afterlife. Not everyone who dies in the real world comes there, but teenagers who have unfulfilled wishes from their real lives. There exist people other than the ones who have landed there after dying. But they don’t have souls, and like AI in video games, they are called ‘NPCs’ or Non-Player Characters. They interact like normal people but they lack character. By that I mean, they follow all the rules and do what they are told, which gives onlookers a sense of utopia, or shall I say ‘contentment’, but they don’t have a soul like the people cast into afterlife.

The more zealous face of Angel Beats! are the characters, as always, my opinion about what gives life to an anime are its characters. AB steals fandom with its splendid character development. I still haven’t talked about the crux of the anime. The description lies in the question ‘Why afterlife?’ Supposedly, such a world is provided for people who hadn’t had a great childhood, so that they can re-live something similar in an other world and let go of all their regrets and finally disappear. As long as people aren’t free of regret, they do not disappear. All the people who are brought to afterlife form a coup to rebel against god for the terrible lives that they have led. Everyone there was exposed to the rough edges of life, thought and seen the unthinkable. For a long time they do not understand the purpose of the place they are in.

The violence is mainly between the coup and what the coup thinks is god’s messenger, the angel. I got to see some of my favorite visual effects during the fights. Graphics are pretty decent. So is the audio. As for the music… I’m sorry, if you’ll please excuse me. Jumps around like a lunatic remembering the excitement Ahem. It blew me away (for good). The best. Girls Dead Monster outdid themselves. The fun watching them escalated because the already amazing soundtrack was paired with an exalted music video. A formidable combination!

I’ll close this with my speculation. Angel Beats! is a highly emotional anime. I have noticed from researching that anime which make people want to cry are quickly pushed to the top of the charts. I’m not implying that such anime do not deserve it or anything, just that it is a persistent pattern, and hence it doesn’t surprise me that the anime has extravagant ratings. What I enjoyed the most in the anime were those depressing and passionate scenes and the overall idea of the plot. I’ve never cried while watching any anime till now, but if you usually do, then I suggest you keep a box of tissues nearby :)

Links: MAL AniDB