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Gantz Vol. 2-3
Gantz is an interesting one for me. The first volume of Gantz was very much a mix of an interesting storyline and a different approach to how characters react to situations with a slow pace, seemingly taking forever to bring anything to a conclusion. Well, the second volume is here, so lets hope something actually ticks along now.
The chaos of volume one is now behind us and the survivors from the first “mission” have returned to the Gantz room. The remaining few are now allowed back to their lives, but something is different. They’ve been told they are copies of their original selves. While Kato and Kuromo don’t exactly have anything left of their bodies, the original Kei (the cute naked girl from volume 1) has been found and saved. Now Kei has to deal with that fact that her original is still alive and she is nothing more that a copy. If all this wasn't enough, they also have to deal with the knowledge that Gantz can call at anytime for a new mission.
Gantz is an interesting series. This volume sends the action back-stage, concentrating on the state of the survivors and what they do next. The execution is very entertaining, as the characters try and settle back into their normal lives, giving we viewers the chance to get to know them. We get to see the depths of Kuromo’s sexual frustration too...
The main feature of the series is the social commentary, particularly through the eyes of Kuromo as he struggles to deal with the events of the first volume. His character thinks and reacts in the same way that a lot of normal people would and it is kind of refreshing to have a character that isn’t always trying to be the hero and impress the girl. That he gets jealous of Kato and constantly has sex on his mind simply serves to make him more human.
Despite the comparative lack of action, this volume shares a trait with its predecessor - it has taken another four episodes to progress anywhere. While it can be argued that the series is building itself up with character situations and development, it does feel at times that heels are being dragged and that someone should push things along a bit.
Gantz is by no means a bad anime. The character designs and animation are fantastic, exactly what we've come to expect from Gonzo, though the CG animation does look a little out of place at times. Plot and character development, once they get going, are entertaining, throwing in a couple of curve balls to keep you on your toes. It just needs to pick up the pace and not try to introduce so many characters at once. Hopefully with the third volume things will pick up and some serious plot and character advancements will finally lead somewhere.
Passes the road test, just needs to put the foot on the accelerator more.