What's your opinion on Serial Experiments Lain?

PurpleCharger
PurpleCharger

What's your opinion on Serial Experiments Lain?
I just finished it and I'm just... confused.

All urls found in this thread:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofVnrtBzKB8
Deadlyinx
Deadlyinx

PRESENT TIME

Sir_Gallonhead
Sir_Gallonhead

@PurpleCharger
Firstly, prepare to be flooded with "and you don't seem to understand" about 50 times more than necessary. Secondly, it's one of my favorites. It definitely warrants rewatches. What in particular are you confused about?

massdebater
massdebater

@PurpleCharger
What's your opinion on Serial Experiments Lain?
well, judging by one episode I watched, it's perfect for the social crippled omega-males that would make the majority of people here.

I didnt like it personally that much, but I would watch it if I had absolutely nothing else to do and had it downloaded in high quality and with subs

JunkTop
JunkTop

@Sir_Gallonhead
What exactly is the punchline of the story?
What was Yoshitoshi ABe intending to teach us?

Fried_Sushi
Fried_Sushi

@Sir_Gallonhead
@JunkTop
I would assume it is about the disillusionment and social isolation of our modern generation due to the massive use of technology..?

whereismyname
whereismyname

@JunkTop
ABe didn't write it, Chiaki J. Konaka and Yasuyuki Ueda did. The biggest ideas in Lain have to do with human to human communication. You have to understand Lain's struggle.

@Fried_Sushi
Technology really doesn't have much at all to do with it.

lostmypassword
lostmypassword

@whereismyname
why is it one of your favorites? what exactly do you like about it? Do you think it stands in relation to reality?

SniperWish
SniperWish

@JunkTop
I don't think it's really that important.
I have the impression that the anime is more like a series of episodes that every one treat one concept of science fiction differently, and they're all related through Lain and the surrounding cast and her struggle.

There's a story that develops every episode, but I think that a lot of them have a lot of "fluff" in which they just explore scifi concepts like collective consciousness, telepathy, social problems due to technology, etc...

You can extract a ton of different lectures from the series.

New_Cliche
New_Cliche

The most pretentious shit I have ever watched. Legitimately 1/10.

Boy_vs_Girl
Boy_vs_Girl

@New_Cliche
how so?

Spazyfool
Spazyfool

@PurpleCharger
I don't get it, but i respect it.

Stark_Naked
Stark_Naked

@SniperWish
do you have a favorite lecture?

RumChicken
RumChicken

hey lets make this anime confused as fuck
lets make it moody
give it some dark tones and shading
people will obsess over it and over-analyze the fuck out of its DEEP
get money

kizzmybutt
kizzmybutt

I wish the show would have focused more on the part that thematized the collective consciousness instead of the concept of a "god".

Poker_Star
Poker_Star

@lostmypassword
I love the atmosphere of it, and its story and ideas are interesting to me. It's one of those pieces of art that's different, and in a good way.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ofVnrtBzKB8

askme
askme

Its my favorite anime. I'm amazed at how they could fit so much into just 12 episodes.

Ignoramus
Ignoramus

@Stark_Naked
How Lain as an entity/protocol that could connect all humanity through technology was something comparable to a religious deity was pretty interesting.

Poker_Star
Poker_Star

@Poker_Star
do you think virtual networking as shown in the anime will have an equally huge impact on our future life? I think this show is absurdly accurate when it comes to describing our future society.

Stark_Naked
Stark_Naked

@Ignoramus
Anything you disliked about the show?

PackManBrainlure
PackManBrainlure

@Poker_Star
I think that on a surface look, it "predicted" some things at the time that are true today, both in an abstract sense and in a more literal sense, but I don't think it's important to what the story is conveying. What in particular were you thinking of that might turn out to have future impact?

GoogleCat
GoogleCat

@Stark_Naked
It's been a long time since my last rewatch but I remember some episodes that didn't seem as interesting.
The one that focused on her sister getting psychologically overwhelmed by everythin that was going on (the 4th one I think) was a bit boring to me.

But other that a few particular episodes that in my opinion dragged a bit too long I think I liked everything, it's an anime that has a particular atmosphere that is very attractive to me, and on top of that it talks about stuff that I find very interesting.

5mileys
5mileys

It's not hard to understand. In short, SEL is an anime about a girl who's trying to find more about herself. During her quest, the anime touches on philosophical questions without explicitly answering them but instead hinting at certain answers (making the viewers think for themselves), shows impact of "social media" and intrusive technology on society and more importantly deals with the question of whether people do exist outside of memories. The last point is more strongly put forward thanks to the setting of the show where perception of reality is affected by virtual world.

The rhizomic storytelling allows the show to touch on many interesting aspects.

The only part of the show that's a little hard to understand is the alien. But if you consider it to be a red herring, it doesn't become an issue. Perhaps, the alien was a hint that Lain does exist outside of people's memories.

The anime is also existentialist in nature. Lain is trying to act rational and make sense out of an absurd world. And she has proven to be a free agent, going against the will of her supposed much more potent maker. It's not just that Lain was able to think for herself, but also live, feel and experience that she was able to do philosophical thinking.

Lain is one of the best examples in anime of a a character becoming human, in the philosophical sense.

Existentialism is pretty interesting. I suggest reading Kierkegaard, Sartre, Camus and Doestoevsky.

Flameblow
Flameblow

@PackManBrainlure
I was thinking about social isolation, instrumentalization of people and the increasing mechanization of life in general. Even the transformation of our consciousness into machines seems like something that is likely to happen in the future.

Poker_Star
Poker_Star

@5mileys
Thanks for the accurate review.

cum2soon
cum2soon

@GoogleCat
Can you recommend similar shows? I would consider Neon Genesis Evangelion to be similar for example.

Inmate
Inmate

@Flameblow
Mind-machine interfaces are still 10-20 years away from commercial adoption.

Stark_Naked
Stark_Naked

@Flameblow
I would agree in some ways that those are and will continue to affect us as technology increases, however I think as far as those things go in relation to Lain, you have to keep in mind that the use of technology in everyday life wasn't what was doing that for Lain.

WebTool
WebTool

AND YOU DON'T SEEM TO UNDERSTAND

iluvmen
iluvmen

@Stark_Naked
Do you wish you could transfer your mind into the internet? You would basically exist in the world wide web instead of real life. Can someone existing like that be happy at all?

SniperWish
SniperWish

@cum2soon
Not really, maybe Kino no Tabi for obvious reasons but the themes are pretty different.

JunkTop
JunkTop

@iluvmen
It would be too unnatural to me. I would be too afraid to. It's the kind of irrationality I have that makes me fear death but not want to be immortal outside of my human body.

Crazy_Nice
Crazy_Nice

@Poker_Star
I haven't seen the anime in quite some time so there's more to the show than what I wrote. But this review is what the core of the show is about.

VisualMaster
VisualMaster

@JunkTop
That's not irrationality, that's called being human, my friend :)

Supergrass
Supergrass

@iluvmen
Why do you find that such a terrible prospect?
If you already spend most of your free time on the Internet, there's really not much difference.

Spamalot
Spamalot

@VisualMaster
But at its core, it is irrationality. human consciousness perpetuates irrational thought.

massdebater
massdebater

@Supergrass
Wouldn't you miss your friends, family, loved ones? Wouldn't you miss expressing emotions, such as joy?

girlDog
girlDog

@massdebater
The moment we have virtual HUMAN intelligence uploads, we probably already have electronic representation of emotions.

Crazy_Nice
Crazy_Nice

@massdebater
But downloading our minds to the Internet means that we all are more connected, not less.
You wouldn't miss anyone.
I don't know about emotions, we're getting into the specifics there, but I don't think you would have to give up on feeling emotions just to upload your mind, that would make us no different from processors.

Snarelure
Snarelure

@girlDog
@Crazy_Nice
what's your opinion on the "god" part of the anime? I guess it made some sense, since Lain was omnipresent but it felt so random and inappropriate.. I guess this is just me

happy_sad
happy_sad

@Crazy_Nice
That ties in to one of the big ideas in Lain, that Eiri's assumption of the world as "of the flesh" and "obsolete" is incorrect. He wanted to connect everybody on the unconscious level as everything was in the beginning, but neglected to understand that humans are humans for a reason and should learn to live as humans.

@Snarelure
Not him but try not to think of Lain as a "God". As far as Eiri's "god" part, that's just his own power trip, and his attempts to manipulate Lain. Lain's nature as omnipresent is important to the nature of the show's version of the collective consciousness, which serves as the natural inherent force that connects all humans through different methods of communication. It's not that she's a creator or a ruler, she is representative of that force, turned human by Eiri and "forced" to live as a human with the need for communication.

w8t4u
w8t4u

@Snarelure
I liked it because it explores the idea of a man-made God that is different from the traditional figure, a deconstruction of the religious concept.
In SEL, the closest figure to a God ends up being something that is created by mankind and that reaches omniscience through technology, it's not an independent and superior being that is alienated from all the mundane things, but someone that is all-knoging and omnipresent because it's connected to everyone at the same time.
It's also nice how in the endthey potrayed Lain as loving and caring instead of as a distant figure that doesn't care about anyone, giving a nice and "happy" ending of some sort to the anime.
Just my interpretation anyway.

kizzmybutt
kizzmybutt

@happy_sad
@w8t4u
well said, thanks for your in depth analysis.

Fuzzy_Logic
Fuzzy_Logic

@w8t4u
Lain is not all knowing and omnipresent or omnipotent.

She exists inside of people's memories. She doesn't exist in planet Y and doesn't know anything happening over there.

idontknow
idontknow

@Fuzzy_Logic
Yeah I used an incorrect word, I'm aware Lain has absolutely no power over anything physical because she's not actually a magical being.

iluvmen
iluvmen

The way I see the whole Lain/god thing, is that Lain was already an actual god, but accepted and became a "human" god in the end.
Before the last episode, she truly was omnipresent and interacted directly with people through the Wired. However, through her interactions with Alice she learned how to be more human.
In the final episode, she "rewrites all the bad memories" and becomes a figurative "human" god. One that brings people together, has no actual power, and only exists as long as people remember her. Basically how gods in reality work.

Need_TLC
Need_TLC

@idontknow
She may have power over the physical. She has destroyed things telekinetically. And when she visited the child-killer scientist, it was revealed that a bunch of psychic kids were used in an experiment (KIDS) to gather their PSI in a way to increase their overall psychic power. But that doesn't make Lain a god.

@iluvmen
She has telekinetic power, but it's not grand. Her ability to rewrite memories is power too.

Lain was never a god to begin with and didn't become a god because she's neither omniscient nor omnipotent. She's just a strong AI that became human.

TechHater
TechHater

@iluvmen
see @happy_sad

The lesson Alice taught her was understanding about her humanity. Lain is human, but she is a force that was already present in the wired (as a factor of communication) that was not sentient until Eiri gave her a human body. Lain as a human was an introvert. Despite being a manifestation of this force, she found it difficult, except when she's "faceless" on the internet. This was the assertive wired Lain. After giving up and accepting herself as Eiri's tool, Alice reminds her that she's human, and that she has a friend in Alice. Calling her a "god" just has these weird connotations to it that detract from being able to understand her.

RavySnake
RavySnake

@Need_TLC
I never said she was a goddess, if I did, it was just for the sake of comparison.
She's inside every human connected, so thinking she's everywhere there's a human and she knows everything mankind knows isn't a wild speculation.

In my opinion, one of the main purposes of Eiri as a character is to force you to establish that comparison and to think about how Lain could really be seen as a God of some sorts, but obviosly she's not God in the literal meaning of the word.
If something, she's the God of the Wired, because she's portrayed as truly omniscient here.

I didn't remember that she, infact, showed telekinetic powers.

StonedTime
StonedTime

@RavySnake
I didn't remember that she, infact, showed telekinetic powers

She popped Lin's (one of the men in black) eyepiece from her window after she temporarily phased it out of existence.

Emberburn
Emberburn

watched it in 2x, then 4x towards the end
pretentious shit was boring, going back to my kyoani moe

Fried_Sushi
Fried_Sushi

@Emberburn
Sorry you didn't enjoy it, both Lain and Euphonium are probably firmly in my top tier of favorites.

RumChicken
RumChicken

@RumChicken
If that gives you money we would be full of DEEP anime and not full of ecchi and lolis.
you need DEEP and lolis, that's the secret

Methshot
Methshot

@PurpleCharger
confused
Visual exposition is hard to grasp without experience. You should watch more film.

Spazyfool
Spazyfool

@Poker_Star
I don't think that's really important in the show's evaluation, though if that's not what you meant that's fine. I personally don't really agree with the show and see technology as mostly a positive force, even in terms of communication. Though I guess to some things we just need a bit adjustment.

I try to judge a show more by not the message itself it presents but the way it presents that message, through narrative, dialogue, story, astmosphere. I can disagree with a show completely but admire it for its exposition and Lain handles that perfectly.

happy_sad
happy_sad

@cum2soon
Check out what other works the director and the scriptwriter worked on. Then compare which of these titles are more highly regarded.
I liked Evangelion too, so if you tell me what you liked about both those shows then I can try recommending something more specific. I liked both of them for the jigsaw puzzle plot, creative visual direction, semi-surreal setting and disturbing atmosphere. But you might have liked them for totally different reasons.

Illusionz
Illusionz

So I'm watching Serial Experiments Lain and something doesn't seem right. In episode 8 lain decides to alter existence and delete peoples memories so there aren't rumors being spread about Alice having an affair with her teacher. In episode 11 she does the exact same thing again… I don't get why at all.

Both of those happen at the last couple minutes of each episode.

Just to be clear, since I asked this already elsewhere and people always make the same mistake. I'm not referencing the end of the series (episode 13).

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