To Begin, Sagi gets hit over her head by an elementary school dude with a crooked golden baseball bat. One incident takes place after another, and the whole city is now terrorized by a string of these violent and unsettling attacks. Two detectives start interrogating and probing the incident. Are they really looking for a psychological murderer or is it misconception full of bewildered eyes from decaying minds? What else could you expect from the genius Satoshi Kon (Perfect Blue, Paprika, Tokyo Godfathers)? He is famous for his psychological depictions, and leading a normal start towards the most reality-blurring plots. Today’s topic of discussion is Satoshi’s only episodic psychological series Paranoia Agent.
This very lady, Tsukiko Sagi is a character-designer. The character (Maromi), she designed brought her fame and depression as well. When she gets into the accident, a number of people start becoming this ‘Shonen Bat’s’ (as they named him) victim. The bar between reality and illusion starts to blur when a rotten society leads to paranoia, harming itself, warping the subject of human perception.
The peculiar way of story-telling, self-contained episodes, characters, and their connections may seem distracting, but trust me, they not only portray the perks of being a Satoshi Kon’s direction but also makes sense in the end. Despite this explanation, if you still notice some out-of-place scene, re-watch it and you will know, it all makes sense. Despite the disjoints everything connects from the story to the characters of Paranoia Agent.
The animation was handled by Madhouse studios (Paprika, Death Note, One-Punch Man). The animation for Paranoia Agent is made as realistic as possible, no cute characters out there! Except for Maromi, the doll, or is it? The animation here does help bring the character into life.
The mystery remains tight-lipped and forces the audience to think who the real culprit is? The anime best plays at depicting human psychology while sticking to its crime-mystery genre. How does the web of rumors work and how other factors such as media contribute to this web? How such paranoia harms a whole community?
Satoshi Kon’s Paranoia agent might be termed as the best blend from a director’s plate ever. This under-rated captivating gem needs recognition and a good load of focus while watching.