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Club Library
To Rent: CLUB MEMBERS ONLY. PM me here and state the titles you want, and they'll be brought to the next meet/ social for you to pick up.
Prices: FREE! Limit of 3 items a time. Rental is for period of one month.
Review By avmakt
Posted: 17/10/10 09:52

This show is for the most part a philosophical, psychological thriller that swings between the humorous and the disturbing, the bizarre and the exciting. As clichéd an explanation as that is, I think it sums it up rather well. One second the character is suffering an existential crisis, the next a non-sequitur will arise so bizarre that I couldn’t help but laugh at the absurdity of the transition. That being said, I don’t seem to being giving the show the justice it truly deserves.

The main character is Iwakura Lain (or the other way around if you are an American) a girl of about fourteen. She is decidedly withdrawn; finding relating to her family and classmates difficult at best. Everything changes (apologies; another cliché) however, when a girl at her school commits suicide. Then starts sending e-mails. Lain learns through these e-mails about a completely separate world from the “real” one where people’s minds can seem to live on. This is referred to as "The Wired"; which is technically the sum of all electronic communication on earth but for the sake of simplicity can be summed up as the internet. From there she becomes something of a computer geek, obsessively upgrading her computer to gain better access to the Wired; a place where she feels more at home than the “real world”. She also gains a few friends in the real world, although the only one worth mentioning is Mizuki Arisu; a person who seems to like Lain for reasons that have nothing to do with Lain’s ubiquitous nature on the Wired and as such is valued by Lain as her only actual friend.

The only low point of the series is the second volume (slightly weaker than the other three), possibly because it is the transition stage between the stage setting of the first volume and the last two, where much of the actual plot detail takes place. The themes are exceptionally compelling, as is the usual character of Lain. The combination of unforeseeable plot twists with the inherent instability of the reality in the show make for what someone less concerned with the overuse of stereotypical reviewer rhetoric would call a “riveting viewing experience”. The concept of a protagonist who gains unbelievable powers over a computer world may not be a particularly new one (Tron, Matrix etc) but Serial Experiments Lain does it with more competence, it looks better, is founded upon more interesting precepts and explores them in a much more engaging fashion. All in all, this show is awesome.
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