Wednesday, June 12, 2002


Genocyber: The Collection

2.5/5 Stars

Director: Koichi Ohata
Studio: C. Moon
Relased in US by U.S. Manga Corps
5 Episodes on 1 DVD

Genocyber is the bizarre, hard to follow, and gory story of a girl-turned-cybernetic-genocydal-godlike-monster, spanning 4 centuries and 4 episodes. The series was created in what appears to be 3 separate installments, leading to a choppy story. The first episode is somewhat more violent clone of Akira that makes even less sense. Evil corporations, strange experiments on psychic kids, and a super-powered little girl that turns in to a berserk monster, "Genocyber". The plot is pretty predictable, ending with massive destruction and death.

Episodes two and three take place several months later, on board a massive futuristic aircraft carrier. The little girl is back, as is the evil corporation, the Kyuryu Group. The Kyuryu group has been conducting further experiments, creating the perfect soldier who can control any machine. A battle breaks out between Genocyber and the soldier, resulting in the soldier melding with the entire ship and its crew. The two episodes end with massive destruction and death.

Episodes four and five are the most interesting, and the longest. Set 400 years in the future, they depict and earth where war between the Kyuryu Group and Genocyber have destroyed civilization. The Kyuryu Group has been reduced to an orbital battle station waiting for Genocyber's next move, while Genocyber itself has gone into a sor tof hibernation. The last bastion of civilization is "Arc Grande", a city that's beautiful on the outside, but decadent and corrupt within. The art and design of these two episodes are by far the best, with very interesting buildings and vehicles. Some new and likable characters are introduced, developed, and the quickly killed as the final battle between Genocyber and the Kyuryu group results in destruction and death.

In short, Genocyber is one of the most confusing and violent series I've seen. The confusion results from the almost total lack of cohesion in the story, the inability not to kill a character, and odd changes in the behavior of those that aren't killed. It's violence is on par with series such as M.D. Geist, where gore and sheer grossness are emphasized. Genocyber is not without it's pluses, the animation is very well done, apart from some poor attempts at computer graphics in the first episode. Mecha design is also well done. I disliked the dubbing, a problem I've had with other titles released by Central Park Media companies. I definitely recommend watching the subtitled version, the Japanese voice overs are better, and the series doesn't feel so much like a B horror movie.

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