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Gantz #3: Process of Elimination PDF Print E-mail
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R2 DVD Reviews
Friday, 28 April 2006 00:00
Volume Three (Cover Art)After the first two volumes of Gantz, I was ready to proclaim my conversion to the series' charms - we had action, we had character development - we had a bunch of complete wasters on the screen, but that's part of the charm.  Volume three brings us four episodes of the series' second hunt, where most of the gang just stand around and do nothing.  Wow, this is entertaining...

9 - I'll Kill You Without a Moment's Hesitation
Kurono's got a problem before the hunt has even started - he's got no suit.  While he realises the importance of having one, Kato's not having much luck persuading everyone else of that - Tetsu for one doesn't like feeling that he's being ordered around, and his gang-mates don't believe a word they've been told.  Add it all up, and the odds of survival for most of the people in the room don't look good - and that's something Nishi takes great pleasure in pointing out to anyone who'll listen.  It's enough to rile one of the bikers to take a shot at Nishi, and the body count gets started before the hunt even begins...

Cannon fodder?Don't mess with Nishi

10 - Yuzo?
Finding himself facing their target with no suit, Kurono fears for the worst - but Suzuki (by all appearances a robot) walks right by him, giving him a chance for a clear shot, but for some reason he just can't pull the trigger.  The rest of the group have all materialised together on a nearby bridge, just in time to find Kurono running towards them with Suzuki close behind.  Nishi, keen to get his last ten points, goes for the kill but soon finds himself staring defeat in the face - and thanks to his earlier outbursts, no-one's in any real hurry to help him out.  Not without some heavy-duty grovelling, at least - and that's something he just can't bring himself to do...

Yuzo-kun?Imminent danger

11 - He Can't Shoot
Kato's intervention comes too late to help Nishi - although rather than being killed, Suzuki's attack leaves Nishi with his eyes and ears ruptured beyond repair but otherwise alive & kicking.  A fate worse than death, perhaps?  Not that Kato would have been of much use anyway - he's pretty much incapable of pulling the trigger on his gun.  But he's perfectly capable of taking a somewhat more physical approach...

Power-downPop goes the turkey

12 - Kato, You Wait Here
The clock continues to tick down, and the "players" are still trying to figure out exactly what they need to do - one alien has been dealth with, but with them still outside it's clear there's another alien they need to deal with.  Kato & Kishimoto head off in search of it, but quickly find out there's more than one left.  Kurono, meanwhile, has problems of his own, as one of Tetsu's gang-mates decides that having guns gives him the authority, and takes Tatsu & Kurono hostage...

What next?Kishimoto to the rescue

First up, I'd just like to say the the aliens in this series are as cheesy as hell - but that's pretty much in keeping with much of the show, I suppose.  With that out of my system, I've another tangent to fly off on...

By now, it's fairly clear to Kei, Kei and Kato that Gantz's game is serious and deadly - and Kurono certainly seems to understand that entering the game without his suit is not good for his survival chances.  Yet faced with this knowledge, neither Kurono nor Kato will take golden opportunities to kill their targets and move things along, opting rather to spend time agonising over the morals of the situation.  Likewise, when Nishi's facing certain death, it's a five-minute conference on a bridge to decide whether to help him or not.  All this indecision paralyses the story and leaves the hunt - at four episodes and counting - taking far more time than it really should need.  These are meant to be the action episodes, but there's precious little action going on.

It could be said that all this is intended to build the characters a bit more, and add depth to them, but it doesn't really.  The end effect is a series of episodes that don't go anywhere and feel really badly paced - which is very disappointing when compared to the first two volumes.  I still think the series as a whole definitely has something going for it, but this volume of Gantz really doesn't make any use of the potential that's there.  If the show sticks to it's formula, next volume will see one more episode of hunt before we get back to the character-driven side of the story - hopefully the show will redeem itself then.

Rating - ***

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