Another Anime Impressions post for you, and its another relatively old series I've been watching (since I've got a huge backlog of anime, and not been keeping up with many new releases.)
Noein (to your other self) (2005)
I was drawn to this series well...because I am a sucker for some good sci-fi anime. It starts off introducing the characters through a mainly drama/romance type show, but brings in some really interesting ideas to do with parallel dimensions. It really builds up into something quite intriguing as it goes on.
The art style is something that is very different from many other anime. It is very stylised at times, like in some of the fight scenes where they purposefully use a sketchy, scribbly style. Think that one episode in the Animatrix with the skateboarding kid. Quite a few other shows use this style in fast, dynamic scenes for great effect.
The characters are quite nice in terms of design as well. I've seen some anime and western cartoons using this kind of sketchy shading and really unusual character ideas. The character of Atori in Noein jumps out at me, I like quite a lot of the characters from Lacrima, especially Karasu who just kicks ass. Here's a pic of Atori looking suitably maniacal:
In terms of story, as always I don't want to give away too much of the later story, but it is mainly about a bunch of school kids who are good friends and it goes on to develop their relationships, trials and hardships they go through. They have to deal with studying for exams to get into colleges (or some kind of middle school equivalent) and all kind of minor stresses kids have to deal with (*facepalm*), yeah so its inevitably got a bit of emo-ness coming from Yu (one of the main characters) early on, but thankfully as the series goes on, it gets less mindnumbing and peters out. Its got quite a Ghost in the Shell/Matrix idea when it comes to the alternate dimensions and how they pass between, so if you like that kind of thing, check this one out.
So what about my rating for this one? Aside from the slightly dissapointing ending (but many anime have quite poor endings, so I can forgive this one a bit, since it ain't too bad) there really aren't that many things I didn't like about it.
I'd give Noein a 8.5/10 just because it had a LOT of potential, and I had heard really good reviews but it never really got me addicted exactly and I reckon they could have done some more with the rich atmosphere they had built up. Perhaps a couple more episodes or a second season could have been very good for the series. Still, its recommended from me.
'Till next time. =D