Guess I'll consider this the first review I'll submit onto our new forum. Here we go...
Death Parade is a supernatural drama focused on a mysterious tavern that is actually a place in the afterlife where bartenders called arbiters judge the souls of the recently departed through Death Games that determine whether a person's soul will be reincarnated or condemned to limbo. While episodes of the series focus around the differing visitors that visit this tavern, focus is also devoted to the staff members of the tavern as we learn more of their mentalities when it comes to judging souls and the type of world in which they inhabit.
Being one of the more unique titles I've seen for a recent title, Death Parade's whole theme is focused around the value of living and the role arbiters have in judging humans that enter their tavern. A number of episodes in the series feature the arbiters making use of the Death Games to delve into the memories of the human souls they are judging to see the type of lives they lived and the events that led up to their demise in the living world. The types of Death Games delivered make use of mundane games like Twister, darts and an arcade game where any movements or successful points delivered in the game can cause pain to a specific body part of an opponent. The types of people brought to the tavern vary from those with deceptive motives, those with tragic upbringings and killers; this helping to create variety in the type of people judged by the arbiters whenever any human souls appear throughout varying points in the series.
While the judgement premise above could easily have led Death Parade to be an episodic series in the vain of titles like Mushishi and Kino's Journey, the series instead opted to mix it around with exploring how life in the afterlife was at the tavern adding some continuity and variety in what could be focused on. The series explores a number of aspects to how things in the tavern are ran such as how arbiters come to be, the environment laid out with judging souls and how human souls are able to arrive into the tavern. Many of the arbiters are actually rather apathetic to the concerns of human souls as they hardly exhibit emotion or concern for the ordeals faced by humanity and the mentality behind this is slowly revealed as the series progresses.
The most prominent focus within the series though is reserved for Decim and the black-haired woman who assists him in his judgements. Both have their unique things to bring to being an arbiter compared to the majority of the tavern staff with Decim showing a desire to understand more about humans and the black-haired woman being rather different in her nature compared to the other arbiters. While I won't spoil too much about what goes on with their characters, I will say that more of the black-haired woman's origins get revealed and both our leads start to question the entire reason surrounding the implementation of the Death Games in later episodes of the series as it seems to demoralize the worth of the person's existence from their eyes.
Issues with Death Parade mostly come down to personal nitpicks. Beyond Decim, his assistant and the various human souls, the rest of the tavern staff get limited to little development in comparison though they aren't the primary focus of the series. Also, the ending is a rather ambiguous one as it is left unclear whether Decim and the black-haired woman's actions swayed things in regards to how the tavern would handle judging souls beyond the series. Otherwise, there is little else for me to pick apart with this series in regards to its plotting and characterization quality.
With Madhouse Studios at the helm for animating this series, Death Parade offers up nicely detailed settings and character designs that depict subdued color tones to go along with the title's dark edge with its storytelling. While much of the series is set in the tavern, it still shows off varying scenic shots depicted through the memories of human souls visiting the tavern and some other parts of the afterlife that the arbiters visit. While animation isn't a major element of the series, Death Parade still offered up fluid movement of characters depicted during the varying Death Games, flashbacks and other activity seen throughout the series.
Overall, Death Parade is easily among one of the year's best offerings thus far thanks to its exploration of the activity within the tavern and Decim and the black-haired woman coming to be oddities within how the afterlife judges human souls. The premise is an insightful and unique one that explores the worth of human lives through the eyes of those considering themselves not human and is worth checking out if you're looking for something out of the ordinary for an anime.
Taka: I see. A global release will benefit it. Gundam did pretty good. The only few franchises that are only popular in Japan but not popular in the west - Yokai Watch comes to mind.
Apr 10, 2021 1:55:16 GMT
Master Menos: F for Respects. DMX did all his work while suffering from a drug addiction, and I almost never knew until a point. I hope his next life treats him far better.
Apr 10, 2021 15:30:45 GMT
HungryWorld: Sorry for taking so long for the things i have to do, have been suffering from some health issues (including mental health deterioration). Anyways hope i can be a bit more active here soon enough once i am properly patched up again.
Apr 27, 2021 17:45:38 GMT
Taka: No worries, health, family, school, and work take priorities first.
Apr 28, 2021 7:41:52 GMT