No. 6 – episodes 1 & 2

No. 6 has been generally regarded as “that other noitaminA show that isn’t Usagi Drop”. A bit of a shame really. Usagi Drop is great and all but No. 6 is by no means inferior to it, in fact so far I’ve been enjoying No. 6 far more than Usagi Drop, thanks (in no small part) to the absolutely wonderful setting and artistry at work here. One of the world’s most prolific sci-fi authors is Philip K. Dick; you may have heard of him, a lot of his books have been adapted into very successful movies, most notably ‘Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?’, which was adapted as Blade Runner, one of my favourite movies. No. 6 is very clearly influenced by his works and it shows: the world of No.6 looks spectacular, and everything just feels sophisticated, from the ID bracelets everyone is required to wear to the maintenance robots. This is undoubtedly one of the best looking shows of the season, and I’m so glad to be blogging it.

Oh, I should probably mention that this show has some Yaoi overtones, but honestly, get over it. I don’t like overt Yaoi but I highly doubt it’ll be used for fanservice, and if the main characters do end up together, I honestly think it will be done tastefully. I mean so far, this is as far as the relationship has gotten.

No. 6 opens with a young boy being chased and shot at by what appear to be government agents of some kind. He is cornered and screams, which is heard by our protagonist, Shion. We learn that Shion is one of the elite, living in a luxurious home in the city of No. 6, overlooked by a city hall known as the moon drop, due to his level of intelligence. It’s Shion’s birthday, and a typhoon is expected to hit No. 6 that very day, which Shion thinks is “the best present ever”. He goes with his friend Safu to her grandmother’s house to celebrate his birthday, on his way home, Safu kisses Shion, which Shion doesn’t quite understand, and gets home so that he can scream at the typhoon (seriously).

Whilst watching the typhoon, the boy shown at the beginning of the episode breaks into Shion’s room, his arm wounded from being shot at earlier. Shion offers to tend to his wounds, which surprises the boy, who introduces himself as Nezumi (rat). Shion helps Nezumi further by giving him food and allowing him to stay at his house for the night. When Shion wakes up, Nezumi has gone and the safety bureau has shown up at his house.

In episode 2, we have a 4 year time skip. Shion is living in Lost Town, a lower class area of the city, after he and his mother were forced to leave their home due to harbouring Nezumi, and now works as a park supervisor, apparently rejected for the special education program he was going to enter. During work, Shion and a co-worker, Yamase, discover the dead body of an aged man with a parasitic growth on his neck.

Later, Shion meets up with his old friend Safu, who is apparently moving to No. 5 in order to study abroad, and she unsuccessfully tries to get Shion to explain why he ended up in his current situation despite his incredible academic ability. On their way home Safu makes advances toward Shion, she is… forward, to say the least.

Despite her… unique approach, Shion rejects her, saying that he’s always seen her as a friend, nothing more. Suddenly, a rat crawls onto Shion, and through a microphone (I’m assuming it’s a microphone) placed on the rat, Nezumi speaks to Shion. Surprised, Shion runs to try and find him, but is unsuccessful.

The next day at work, Shion is told that the story about the man who died the previous day wasn’t mentioned in the news and that the man who died was actually 30 years old despite his appearance, Shion claims that he thinks the authorities may be manipulating information, his co-worker quickly silences him, saying that they “should never voice suspicions”. Yamase then begins to age extremely quickly, and dies within a few seconds. Shion notices a growth on his neck identical to the one on the man in the park, and a wasp comes out of the growth.

Some police officers then come to take him to a correctional facility, using a recording of Shion’s earlier suspicions as evidence that he may be a “malcontent”. On the way to the facility, Shion is rescued by none other than Nezumi, who forces Shion to abandon his ID bracelet, as it can be used to track him. We then learn that Nezumi may or may not have been watching Shion for a while now, and that he’s been using the sewers to get around the city. We see that Shion has marks on his neck, indicating that he is infected by whatever it is that killed his co-worker and the man in the park. Nezumi takes Shion with him to a slum-like area, which Nezumi claims to be the “real world”.

So far, I really like this anime, the plot is interesting, the animation and artistry is gorgeous and the pacing is great. I’ll undoubtedly keep covering it, as it seems to be one of the strongest shows of the season, I look forward to more.

8 Responses to “No. 6 – episodes 1 & 2”

  1. 1 ghastly
    19 July 2011 at 2:33 am

    you write like a hillbilly whose extreme fetal alcohol syndrome has left him in a borderline vegetative state. And i mean that with all the positivity in the world

    • 2 John
      19 July 2011 at 2:35 am

      whilst ghastly is clearly a troll, i do tend to agree that your writing style has a lot to be desired. From the very, uh, liberal use of punctuation to the dry descriptions, your piece is quite a literary failure. 🙂 I hope my criticism can be used constructively.

  2. 5 Tohru7
    19 July 2011 at 3:31 am

    Well, i really like your review. I thought it was insightful and clear, good job!
    I love No.6 and find the story so interesting. I’ve been around anime for a long time now and i think this is the perhaps the first time i’ve seen a story that concentrates so heavily on the relationship between two boys. I’m also loving where the staff is going with this (Character designs, music, and the background art are so lovely). Although, i do wish they would include more scene from the novels (i found many interesting scenes have, unfortunately, not been shown in the anime). I also find it ridiculous how people are wanking about the undertones in this anime. I personally love this story because of how Asano Atsuko portays the relationship between Sion and Nezumi. I find their relationship really refreshing!
    Hope you continue to blog about this anime, it’s really a lovely story! I’m definitely excited to see what’s in store for us next 😉

    • 6 Gooney
      19 July 2011 at 4:35 am

      Thanks! Yeah the staff is reeally doing a great job on this show, every aspect of it comes together beautifully to make something special. And I absolutely agree, people refusing to watch the anime because of the central relationship is absurd.

  3. 7 jGLZa
    20 July 2011 at 5:19 pm

    I tried to get through the 1st episode, I really did! It just didn’t do it for me though. I do like the “to the point-ness” of the chick though.

    • 8 Gooney
      20 July 2011 at 5:28 pm

      Yeah, the first episode was kinda slow, the second episode really acts on all of it’s potential. It was actually a bit more “to the point” then that screencap shows.

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Welcome to Bokutachi no Blog. That's "Our Blog" in Japanese. Our Anime Blog, to be exact. And if you landed to this page by accident, probably in search for ecchi stuff, then you should regret to have hit this page. Don't worry, this blog is children-safe and no misdemeanor acts here. Sorry, you bald, middle-aged perverts. But thanks for the hit anyway.

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