STORIES THAT ENCHANT THE MIND
When it comes to anime or any form of media, we all have our share of hidden gems.
These are titles that don’t let us think twice when giving anyone else that special, over the top, recommendation that will blow their mind away.
Some gems I recommend are:
Mononoke for the artistic horror.
Kids on the Slope for those who want to get drunk on a sweet romance they were never able to see for themselves.
91 Days brings back the good old mafia days while delivering a story that makes the hearts weep in complete unison.
Dorohedoro‘ makes us question what the hell we’re looking at for the entirety of its runtime.
It wouldn’t be wrong to say that hidden gems are different personalities and individualities shining at their very best when it comes to the plethora of media and in this case, anime titles there are.
Yet, as we all know, some titles fail to see the light of day, whether it’s for the right or wrong reasons. Many don’t get that level of attention.
Welcome to the N.H.K. is amazing and the perfect ‘out of the box’ idea that gives you that dose, that flavor of the harsh ‘main course’ that reality’s about to hit you with, especially if you end up going down the same in the story.
Let’s have a look at what exactly makes the title such a wonderful piece of art despite being as underrated as a show can get when anime is taken into consideration.
I’m pretty sure you’ve heard the terms NEET, recluse, shut-in, or straight up hikikomori somewhere on the internet before.
Welcome to the N.H.K. introduces you to those terms with Satou, a guy taking the bullet for all fans and anime otakus out there. He is ready to be that bad guy no one wants to be in any story.
Being inside a room that you deemed as your sanctuary for the better-half of your life with an allowance and all the modern amenities one could think of sounds like sweet comfortable dream, but are things ever really that simple?
Welcome to the N.H.K. explores the lives of several young adults around the city of Tokyo.
Each have different lifestyles, but one becomes the focus of the story, the concept of being a hikikomori. It is a term that means a reclusive individual who withdraws from society. Having most of the characters experience intense feelings of depression and loneliness, this anime covers important topics common in Japan.
“We yearn for a stranger to poke around in our heart. Such an irrational thing it is. Flutter once and lunacy behold.”
The beauty of life, and the luxury that the unpredictable brings.
Nothing’s set in stone, especially when our own world is taken into consideration. With the world doing total 180’s every couple of seconds, earning someone’s trust is a feat a person should be proud of.
It’s only natural that the shut-in Satou is going to be at a total loss of words when interacting with actual person, but when the guy next door blasting those anime opening songs and the mysterious ‘flyer distributor’s’ assistant girl is destined to be your savior down the road… It won’t be wrong to say that the chances of you foreseeing it happening by any means aren’t that much higher from the digit zero we love to have in real life.
The way this anime portrays the different situations the protagonist has to overcome while Yamazaki and Misaki are there to help him with every step he takes is quite thrilling. Seeing him through his trials and tribulations while making sure he gets closer and closer to fit into the society he strayed from, shows the value companions and bonds bring.
In its truest sense the relationship between the characters is so beautiful, so wholesome that the title ends up giving you that dose of sweetness that a lot of people aren’t expecting from a show like this.
At a war with his own self, him against the entire world…
Visions force you to believe that you’re nothing but a failure, voices tell you how you’d never amount to anything, and the mirror showing the person you hate most in the world, Welcome to the N.H.K. doesn’t hold back on any punches.
Doubt, grief, paranoia and regret takes over Satou over and over again, the anime gives you a taste of the harsh reality we’re all a part of, the cruel world we all live in. As they say, ‘a drowning man catches at a straw’, you see the man’s desperation, trying to cling, hold on to anything that his fingers can get the slightest grasp of.
He is looking for something to save him, to drag him out of that abyss that he’s sunk deep in, even if there is nothing but poison at the end of it all.
The psychological warfare with the different personalities having a go at it in a free-for-all without sugar coating anything is what makes the anime hit home for a lot of us and makes us witness hard truth… there’s a massive world outside of our own room.
A beautiful conclusion, a befitting end to a story that never should’ve existed..
Some might say that the anime is a lot to handle. I can agree with that to some extent, but in my opinion. The way the show does those turns, those detours down the road to arrive at the finish line is what made me totally hooked.
Seeing Satou’s growth as he makes that transition, attempts that change what he was sure he’d never be able to pull off… it all shows how it’s never too late for anyone out there.
From being a shut-in vampire where the slightest of love from the sun makes him burn to finally being able to walk around, travel, and have a normal conversation with any soul on the planet put a smile on my face. The character development and growth is nothing but a delight through and through.
Sure, parting ways with Yamazaki that was his brother-in-arms when it came to that ‘galge’ makes us shed a tear or two but the anime makes sure we aren’t able to get a break at all with the last episode being one of the best any anime has ever brought to the screen. At least for me.
Through and through, Welcome to the N.H.K. is one of the most underrated titles out there and is for sure a name that deserves a lot more attention.
It has a unique concept with innovative settings that separates it from other anime out there. It executes the struggles one faces when put in that similar situation in such an accurate and real way that it’s hard to not be able to relate to the show in one way.
The show sure throws a lot at you during its ‘24 episode’ count. I was actually kind of amazed as to why people weren’t talking about this title a lot since despite it being a few years old at this point, it still hasn’t lost its impact one bit.
The anime making sure it hits you right in the feels over and over again, all while keeping up that mysterious aura that we can’t help but love to pieces.
I’ve always been into writing since day one. Along the way I found anime and manga and it was just delightful transforming my thoughts into words. I feel at ease writing about them and it’s truly something I find solace in.
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