A story of self-sacrifice
bonsai chicken | United States | 09/18/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This volume concludes the story of Section 2, a covert organization that rehabilitates doomed young girls into secret agents. Far from a common "girls with guns" show, it focuses instead on the human emotions behind the scenes. While there are bits of action scattered through out the series, it is not for those who are looking solely for that type of entertainment.
In episode 10, a girl and her handler are found murdered in a park, and the agency comes under investigation from higher authorities. It takes the insight of one of the other girls to solve the mystery of what really happened. This story arc carries over into episode 11.
In episode 12, Claes is used as bait to discover the location of a team of kidnappers, and Angelica's pre-enhancement injuries and her desperation to prove herself become deadly liabilities.
In the final episode, Angelica's condition worsens and the girls have to deal with the fact that one of their own may not be with them much longer.
It's a beautiful ending to a unique series. While I am saddened to leave these characters, I am satisfied with what's here. Extra features on the DVD include production commentary, voice director commentary, clean opening and closing sequences, dossier files, a cel-building demonstration, and trailers."
Worth checking out
K. Gamble | New York City | 09/13/2005
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This series was my first foray into anime after a several year break, and I was really pleased with it. On the surface, it looks like another one of those ever-present "girls with guns" stories that seem to be everywhere, but this show has something more. The characters have real heart - they may be brainwashed cybernetically enhanced girls who have been moulded into professional killing machines, but they're still little girls, and as such have a charm, curiosity and innocence. The show somehow manages to strike balance between the action and the character development, and I really drew me in. The desire to prove themselves to their handlers, the social interaction between the girls; I really enjoy the story.
Disc 03 wraps up a small sub-plot that started in Disc 02, and has a couple of stand-alone stories to boot. I didn't find Disc 03 as compelling as, say, Disc 01 or 02, but I'm glad I picked it up to round out the series. The end of disc 03 seems to wrap out the series, so i'm guessing there is no Disc 04 forthcoming.
All in all, some of the themes in Gunslinger Girl are reminiscent of "La Femme Nikita" and "The Professional", but they're handled in a more interesting fashion, with some tight yet unconventional storytelling and with interesting character development. The art is fantastic to boot.
Check it out!"