Steins Gate 24 (final) ~ a man who desires chaos
September 13, 2011
For those who don’t know: Steins;Gate was one of, if not THE, best shows of 2011. If you haven’t seen it, don’t start here; start by watching the show for yourself. If you are wondering what it is about, take a look at my first impression post, as what follows contains spoilers. The one thing I would add is that this story delivers right up through the closing scene.
As Steins;Gate was airing I kept thinking, this is great, but they still have time for everything to fall apart. Then, when they made it back to the βeta world-line, I felt so satisfied that I knew this was a successful story. I enjoyed the characters. It had some special moments along the way. And now it had a satisfying ending, with some sort of post-script coming up. Last week’s episode, then, was almost a shock. How do you improve upon satisfying? By having your cake and eating it too. Here (via the wonder of Time Travel) we had the very rare chance to do just that. In Hououin Kyouma’s words, we would “change the result, without changing the established past”.
I have a tendency to put a lot of emphasis on the visual experience, so I was very surprised that Steins;Gate, which has decent (and arguably unique), but not overly impressive visual style really kept my attention. It did this by great writing (an excellent plot, and wonderful characters), and very effective voice acting. As the episode began, I was happy just being with the various characters. Then, as the mission was carried out, I was nervous — caught up in the question of whether it would really succeed. Finally, in the closing minutes, tears of joy flowed relentlessly.
This episode had the perfect blend of comedy, tension, heroism, and harmonious nostalgia to properly end the series. The tension while Okabe struggled to create a new future that, while consistent with the past, not only freed humanity’s future, but saved Kurisu was intense, and the resulting relief contributed to my happiness as Okabe methodically bonded with the various Future Gadget lab members. One of my favorite moments was Kurisu anachronistically complaining that she had told Okabe she wasn’t his assistant, even though he had not yet called her such in this world-line.
By the way, Funimation announced they acquired the rights to Steins;Gate, but I’m not sure they possess the rights to distribute on media, since their announcement specifies “home entertainment, broadcast, digital, and merchandise rights”.