WHAT’S YOUR POISON?
(Spoiler Alert, if you haven’t seen it or you haven’t ended it yet, turn around now. You’ve been warned)
Death Parade is more than just your regular “Slice of Life” anime, there’s more than meets the eye. It takes you places you haven’t seen of yourself and strips you down bare naked to your inner demons. Madhouse created this beautiful story of what we so call “Purgatory”, where souls are stuck between heaven and hell until getting a proper judgment. Here, it’s decided where you are going based on the actions and the life you chose when you were alive. Now, now, we will get into the story in a while, but first let me tell you that to be able to watch this anime you have to be opened at heart to grab every information as possible from it or trust me this show will drill down to your heart so hard that you’ll be recovering from it for a week. Shall we begin?
Death Parade has more than one main story, giving us different ones with varied points of view on how you see life for yourself. First, it will show you this happy married couple stranded into a bar they can’t recognized called Quindecim, with no memories of how they got there or their past life. Here, they are forced to play a game of darts hosted by Decim, one of the protagonists of the show. Decim is a white-haired bartender with barely any facial expressions, more like a hollow being. In the meantime, he explains that they cannot leave the place until they finish the game. But this one is not a local hometown bar game, due to the unexpected twist it has. You see, each point marked has a selected body part, meaning if you hit it with a dart you’ll be inflicted with pain, depending on the area you scored. Obviously, nobody would play this type of game, but what can you do when you have no escape or option. As the game goes on, the couple realizes that the game is a trick and that their “lives” are at risk. What they didn’t now is that they are already dead. As soon as they begin to take the game seriously, the couple starts to remember what happened to them and what lead them to their deaths. Decim steps in and reassures the “guests” that they are dead, their souls are at trial and soon to be re-incarnated or cast into the void. This information makes the married couple start a violent competition, taking their claws out. This helps Decim decide who gets to be punished or who gets to be redeemed, because “humans and their souls are easily understood”. Further into the story, a black-haired woman called Chiyuki enters Quindecim, but she’s not guest…still. She helps Decim learn more about humans and their souls, letting him know that they are complex creatures that cannot be judged upon what’s outside, but on the inside. For example, if you ever see a stranger crying on the street, you will assume that he/she is crying of sadness, but that person could be crying of happiness as well. Emotions are double-edged swords, everyone should be careful on how they pass judgment over people’s life without knowing what they have been through. Chiyuki calls out Decim, demanding not to judge people for what he perceives, but for what that person felt in that moment. The story keeps developing more and more, as different guests with unique stories keep entering this particular bar, or as it’s called, Quindecim.
The show has dark toned soundtrack, with a little jazz to it, making it a perfect match for the whole anime. What’s even more amazing is the show’s intro, the coolest and most dazzling one you have seen yet. Performed by Bradio, the song “Flyers” will make you go “Boom, Boom, Boom” (Inner Joke there), one that you can even blast on your car speakers, for it has everything. Careful now, you may find yourselves hearing it on repeat for a couple of days.
It has an amazing character development for their main protagonists, but a major fall-down to its “villain” called Oculus or “Lotus Beard”. This character is of major importance on Death Parade’s story, but we can just assume that he’s the bad guy. With tons of loose ends, there’s no backstory to him nor why he, near the end of the show, says “God is no longer here”. What happened to God? Did he do something? Why is he in charge now? From this point forward, Death Parade will keep you hanging from a rope to avoid falling onto a big pit called “Deception”.
On the other hand, Death Parade might make the audience cry on each episode, showing the viewer some humanity and telling him/her to love their flaws for what they are. Even more important, is the show’s attempt to help realize how valuable life is and how essential a person can be to those around.
It’s a beautiful anime with amazing animations made by Madhouse. Facial expressions will make you believe each single word that comes from each individual character. Each one with their own distinctive characteristics, that will make them unique to the show and to the spectator.
TREASURE AMONG THE REST
Death Parade is a family jewel to any anime lover and it might become something viewers will carry with them for years.
If you have seen it or plan to see it, please leave a comment below telling us how this anime made an impact on your life or if you enjoyed it or not.
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– Christopher Díaz Cotté
- Aperture: ƒ/2.8
- Camera: GR II
- Flash fired: no
- Focal length: 18.3mm
- ISO: 320
- Shutter speed: 1/50s