This is going to be tough! How do you do a spoiler-free review for Boku dake ga Inai Machi (Erased)? I am going to try. I do apologise if anything I say gives something away. If you’re already interested in the anime, just go watch it, don’t stick around. Here goes – spoiler-free Erased anime review.
So what’s it about?
Satoru Fujinuma is a struggling 29 year old mangaka (manga artist) who has quite a bland life apart from the fact that he has the power to go back in time, just by a few minutes, to stop something bad from happening. He calls this power Revival and it never happens of his own accord, it just happens. However, an event in present day triggers a Revival which takes him back to when he was 10 years old. He believes solving the murder of his classmate, Kayo Hinazuki, which took place when he was 10, will sort out the events of present day. The anime follows Satoru as he tries to figure out what is going on and who killed Kayo all those years ago.
To binge or not to binge?
Absolutely, 100% binge this one. I mean, if you have self control and can let the mystery and psychological thriller aspect of it fester in your mind for days on end, then by all means, take your time with the anime. However, I suggest, you prepare to sit one whole day with the series (12 episodes) and run through the entire thing. I actually waited till all the episodes were out before I started watching because I knew there was no way I could watch this anime on a weekly basis.
Is it a gateway anime?
Yes, actually. I would certainly categorise Erased as a gateway anime. If you’re someone who is looking for a psychological thriller/murder mystery sort of show, Erased is quite perfect for you. However, if you are a big murder mystery fan and love to guess the whodunnit aspect of such shows, you’re going to guess the killer, I’m quite sure. I did, reading Agatha Christie has ruined my life! (ha ha ha)
Dub or sub?
Erased just recently finished airing, there is no dubbed English version of the show and it doesn’t seem like there are plans (currently) to dub it. However, it is quite popular so it might just get a dub by the end of the year. You could wait for that or just watch it with subtitles.
What’s to like?
Erased is a fast paced, psychological thriller with a science fiction element to it. If you’re interested in any of those things, Erased is for you. The animation is really quite beautiful, there’s this metaphoric imagery of Satoru’s memories being like a film strip, I really liked that. A few problems – obviously, the possibility of finding out the killer’s identity because I guessed it and I was disappointed that I was right. Second, you might have a problem with how it ends. I thought it was quite… poetic… but I have seen people criticise the ending. But these are minor issues.
As a whole Erased has a good story, keeps you engaged and is well animated.