‘Haibane Renmei’ is my Favorite Anime
Three years ago, I watched ‘Love Live School Idol Project’. And I didn’t really like it. The animation was weird, the characters acted weird, and the plot was weird. However, I watched through it, and by the end it had become my favorite anime. I ended up loving the characters, even now as I consider Hanayo to be my actual girlfriend, but I’m not about to have a discussion surrounding r/waifuism. I loved the music, I’ve spent tons of money on figurines, CD’s and other various forms of merchandise from the show. No, this post is about ‘Haibane Renmei’, and how this show is absolutely amazing.
I... don’t even know where to begin with this show. There’s just so much, it’s really deep and dense. I don’t think I’ve ever related to a show as much as this, and I haven’t uttered that phrases since I watched ‘Love Live’ and ‘Lucky Star’. But man, this show. The art is beautiful. Absolutely stunning. Watching series like ‘Evangelion’ and ‘Cardcaptor Sakura’ and now this, just reinforces my idea that cel painted anime just look better than digital. Don’t take that as me saying digital animation can’t look stunning, ‘Kill la Kill’ is one of my favorites as well and also looks stunning. But this on a whole another level. The old aesthetic of the show correlates beautifully with the rustic look of the animation, and the character designs by Yoshitoshi Abe just make me want to start watching Lain even more.
The themes of death, recycling and not truly knowing who you are or what you’re even there for resonate with me so hard. I can’t help but love this show, it’s just so darn good. The world building is also great, with it giving you small hints and tidbits about the nature of the world, but never revealing too much, or in some cases anything at all. All of this makes me wonder. What exactly is the weird oversized suit protecting Rakka from? Why are only a certain group of people allowed to travel beyond the wall, and why can they only communicate through sign language? There is just so much to think and wonder about and I love it. The ending is so beautiful, and I cried like three times during the course of the entire series. It’s... This sounds so cringe and overused, but I genuinely can’t even find the words to express my love for this series.
The fact that this show only has 64.000 members on MAL and a score of only 8.08/10 is a crime. I know there are going to be some people who didn’t enjoy it even nearly as much as I did, but it’s just so good. This is the first time in years I’ve felt like I want to be in this world. I wish I could be one of the Haibane, and live in Old Home. It looks so cozy, and everyone is so nice, and they all have their own jobs and stuff. And they help the townspeople recycle their old things and the townspeople are nice to them and... I don’t even know how to describe this. To mention some stuff about the ending again, it’s so darn good. It leaves you feeling happy and with a real sense of closure, while at the same time leaving you with a bucket full of tears and a broken heart.
The fact that there is no more to watch first felt annoying to me. There’s this great universe with all these great characters and clearly so much more to explain or explore, and yet it leaves you there at thirteen episodes. Now there is some source material, but it’s a two volume doujin so I don’t expect it to be covering a lot more. But the thing is, I don’t feel annoyed. The show was great, and it had a well written story. Leaving you wondering about the true nature of the world you just experienced is part of what makes it great. Because sometimes what you don’t show, is just as important as what you do.
And this is all why ‘Haibane Renmei’ has dethroned ‘Love Live School Idol Project’ as my favorite anime. I said this the entire time Love Live was at my #1 spot, so it’s probably going to turn out to be wrong, but I’ll say it again. I don’t think any show is going to be better than this one.
Now excuse me while I continue crying over the fact that this show has left me emotionally damaged with its feels.