Written by Bananaowns
Images courtesy of Studio 3Hz and Studio Orange
Sometimes anime can be extremely confusing when it comes to presenting futuristic concepts or technology. Most of the time, I don’t think these series give an adequate explanation. As the plot moves along, it just creates more confusion. Dimension W is a show that starts out strong, but quickly devolves into an enjoyable mess of technobabble.
Dimension W takes place in the near future marked by the discovery of a fourth dimension. Using devices known as coils, humanity is able to draw out infinite energy from this dimension. The near monopoly of coils is controlled by New Tesla and this quickly creates a black market of counterfeits. As a result, bounty hunters known as collectors, hunt down these illegal coils. The story stars Kyouma Mabuchi, a collector who possesses an intense hatred of coils. One day he encounters Mira Yurizaki, a robot that is human for all intents and purposes. Mira joins Kyouma in his quest to hunt illegal coils.
Most of the story consists of mini-arcs that focus on coil hunting missions. There is an overarching story though. It is subtlety hinted at, but comes to focus by the end of the series. The problem lies with the explanation for dimension w. It quickly becomes confusing at what coils can and cannot do. At sometimes it makes absolutely no sense. I had to turn my brain off during some of these explanations. This wouldn’t be a problem, but the last half of the series relies on this coil talk to a very negative effect. The story lacks the necessary emotional punch because of the confusing technology.
With that said, the story of Dimension W is pretty solid. Some of the mini-arcs are leaps and bounds ahead of the others, but they all manage to be entertaining. There was just so much more potential here that was limited by the confusing nature of the coils.
There are basically two main characters of Dimension W, with a couple more side characters that get a large amount of development. Discussing these side characters in detail would lead to spoiler territory. For the purpose of review, I will focus on Kyouma and Mira.
Kyouma is a collector that harbors a deep hatred of coils, enough that he does not use any coil technology. He has a mysterious past that is alluded to throughout the series and this past does not disappoint. He can be very harsh, but this harshness comes from a good place. Kyouma is ultimately very caring, even if he doesn’t really show it. As for the rest of his characteristics, he is the ultimate badass. Kyouma’s combat ability is pretty much unmatched throughout the series.
Mira is the highly advanced robot that is pretty much human. She even considers herself to be completely normal. Given her different status, she can be very naïve. However, her naivety is very fresh. Her bright personality softens Kyouma as the series progresses. Mira is also highly motivated and does her absolute best in every mission. Given her status as a robot, she possesses a lot of abilities such as super strength and hacking abilities. Ultimately, the pairing of Kyouma and Mira brings out the best of both characters and is the best character interaction of the show.
The animation of Dimension W is crisp and of a very high quality. The characters move with a very high level of fluidity and the actions scenes were some of the best of the season in which it aired in. While I am not a fan of 3D animation, it was used to great effect here. The car scenes are largely CG and they actually look great. It’s amazing in some scenes when the cars are used in tandem with some of the larger robots. The larger robots are also 3D animated very well. One of the strongest aspects of the animation is the character design. I seriously love the design of Kyouma and Mira. Kyouma presents a unique, but traditional look whereas Mira has a variety of great outfits. The same could be said about the other characters. Overall, the animation of this show is a highlight.
The voice acting of this show maintains a standard level of quality. With the exception of the standout performances of Kyouma and Mira, the voice acting is neither good nor bad. It’s just kind of there. The soundtrack of this series is one of my favorite aspects though. I really love the electronic based tracks. It really fits with the near future theme. The opening is also one of the most entertaining tracks of any anime and is a perfect way to get the audience ready for the show.
Dimension W is a highly entertaining show with a significant amount of problems with its story. The episodic nature of the show and the propensity to delve into a lot of confusing explanations of technology really bring down the show. The animation is great with an amazing focus on character design. The sound design is fairly average with some strong areas. As a result, the series is just a decent watch. I give Dimension W my Watch rating. It has a lot of issues, but it’s a decent show overall. I’ll be back next week for another anime feature.