‘Erased’ is an anime released in the winter of 2016, and based on Kei Sanbe’s manga ‘Boku dake ga Inai Machi’ (‘The city where I am not here’); this is also the original title of the anime which, however, is internationally known with the English title.
I’m here to tell you about ‘Erased’ after seeing it all in one breath this morning. (you can see it on Netflix where, among other things, there is also a Live Action version, produced by Netflix)
There are works inspired and works that are not. ‘Erased’ is unequivocally part of the first category. A work of art written with the heart, one that can change the viewer’s heartbeat, and act directly on his soul. In short, a work of art worthy of being made, not like most films or TV series, which are produced nowadays, and are only imitations, or even worse, imitations of imitations of imitations.
‘Erased’ is not a copy of the copy of anything: ‘Erased’ has its soul. And its pulsating soul is that of each of its characters, starting with Satoru Fujinuma, its protagonist.
Satoru has a special gift: in the presence of imminent tragedies, he finds himself back in time (generally from one to 5 minutes before the ominous event), so that he can intervene to avoid the worst by changing the course of events.
But there is an unsolved knot in his life. A very sad event that has not managed to change and which has serious repercussions on his present. Satoru is a mangaka but he is unable to pour all of himself into his work. Maybe a part of him got stuck in the past?
‘Erased’ is a journey into Satoru’s soul and, literally, a 360-degree journey through his life. A journey that will bring him back to Kayo Hinazuki, an old classmate of his who lives with a mother who, it seems, constantly and brutally abuses her.
‘Erased’ therefore also becomes a journey into the dark parts of the human soul: Satoru finds himself having to face, with his heart as an adult and as a child, in the shadows of the abysses of deviated, empty human beings who persevere to live their own lives compensating for the void with the violence they impart on the weakest, on helpless children.
But, most of all, ‘Erased’ is a vibrant, triumphant hymn to trust, friendship and love.
p.s. : a round of applause to all those who worked for the realization of this anime, starting with the author Kei Sanbe, and at least mentioning the excellent director Tomohiko Hito (‘Occult Academy’, ‘Sword Art Online’), the director of animations Keigo Sasaki (‘Seven Deadly Sins’, ‘Blue Exorcist’) and producers Yoko Matsuzaki (‘April’s Lies’, ‘Miyori’s Forest’) and Atsuhiro Iwakami (‘April’s Lies’, ‘Sword Art Online’). [Just look at the titles in which they collaborated to understand that we are dealing with a first-class staff who have worked and continue to work on titles of indisputable artistic value (we will talk about ‘April’s Bugie’ soon), as well as on titles that have had the recognition of a huge audience coming to constitute sagas now on everyone’s lips, even those who have not seen them (Sword Art Online and Seven Deadly Sin)]