Director: Yoshiyuki Fujiwara
Producer: Doga Kobo
Plastic Memories, from studio Doga Kobo, is one of the few anime originals to come out this season and has one of the more interesting synopses. Set in the near future where humans live alongside androids, that are impossible to tell part from humans, also possessing human emotions and memory. The only problem is there lifespan is not as long as a humans, each android or Giftia as they are known, have an expiry date after which there memories and emotions begin to break down. SAI Corp the makers of Giftia are responsible for the collection and disposal of Giftia once there expiry date is almost up, enter SAI Corp’s Terminal Service No. 1 office. Terminal Service No. 1 office are tasked with tracking down the owners of the Giftia, working in pairs consisting of one human and one Giftia they have the hard job of convincing owners to hand over there Giftia before it begins to breakdown.
With a selling point that the original creator and writer of the series, Naotaka Hayashi, had worked on series such as Steins;Gate and Robotics;Notes expectations rose fast. With a little research however Naotaka Hayashi only worked on one episode of Robotics;Notes and a series of shorts for Steins;Gate, you can imagine expectations begin to drop quickly. The director Yoshiyuki Fujiwara having only directed few titles also doesn’t help the creditability of the series. Going into the start of the series all we have is a very interesting synopsis and a studio with a great amount of experience, but mainly in slice-of-life anime.
With the airing of the first episode, fears were certainly blown out of the water with this show. The first episode made full use of its premise to hook the audience in a story of love and sorrow, seeing loving families having to hand over there Giftia. Whom they considered no less than a son, granddaughter or a cherished member of their family is certainly an emotional and tear jerking ride. It’s not all sorrowful storytelling though with some great characters and exceptional comedic timing, so even when we’re not knee deep in emotionally heart-breaking scenes we’re still getting to know the quirkiness of the characters.
With the set-up of the premise and the characters you can clearly see the direction this series is heading towards, which makes it more intriguing to watch. Having a box, or two, of tissues close by maybe a good idea come the end of this series as I can foresee an endless flowing of tears to accompany the finale.