One of the more infamous shows in the last couple of years is Deadman Wonderland. I’d heard a lot of tales – that it was excessively gory, that it made little to no sense and that it was straight-up brainless. I agree with these assessments to a certain extent, but somehow the shortcomings of this show didn’t bother me all that much. Certainly, I enjoyed it a whole lot more than I thought I would. The whole concept is something that could really work if it was executed with any sort of finesse, but it just falls flat. The storytelling is utterly sub-par; the show veers wildly between clunky exposition of the “as you know” variety and leaving the audience utterly blind (I heard from others via Twitter that many of the chapters from the manga that explain just what the hell is going on).
A word about the gore. Yes, it’s there. I could have sworn I downloaded a Bluray version, which I had assumed would be uncensored, but instead I got the black balls of censorship version. Like Scamp, I found it very reminiscent of hyper-violent OVAs from days of old. The rampage by Nagi in the finale seemed especially reminiscent of Go Nagai’s Violence Jack, what with the character designs and the cinematography. As it was I wasn’t bothered by it, but maybe that would change if I could see the insides of people after they got holes shot through them by the guitar-gun (not quite as awesome as it sounds, regrettably)? It would be perfectly reasonable to accuse Deadman Wonderland of double standards – in haste the show passes judgement on the people willing to watch two convicts fight to the death, then takes a certain amount of pride in the exact same thing only a few episodes later. Make of that what you will.
Maybe it was my unconscious desire to thwart swabl in his desire to see me suffer, but I honestly enjoyed Deadman Wonderland. I know it’s not a good show, but by the halfway point I was willing to accept it for its faults. It’s a nice feeling, being able to enjoy something quite this bad, but I don’t think it can last if Sam decides to hit me with another show like this. So as a peace offering, and given the 5 I randomly generated (a wildcard pick), I choose for him a show I have heard many good things about: Infinite Ryvius.