Paranoia Agent (2005)
Dark, unsettling, and intriguing, Paranoia Agent confirms Satoshi Kon's position as one of the most interesting directors currently working in Japan. A baseball bat-wielding adolescent randomly attacks five people in Tokyo, each of whom is grappling with a serious problem. Toy designer Tsukiko endures tremendous pressure to repeat her previous success; bottom-feeding journalist Kawazu desperately needs money. Popular sixth grader Yuuichi feels threatened by the new kid in his class, the dumpy nerd Usshi. Yuuichi's tutor Harumi is a compassionate scholar by day; at night, she becomes Maria, a sleazy hooker. The seemingly purposeless violence of Lil' Slugger (originally Shounen Bat, literally "Bat Boy"), also disrupts the lives of police detectives Maniwa and Karino, and their corrupt boss Hirukawa. As he did in Perfect Blue, Kon deliberately blurs the boundaries between reality and fantasy: Does Tsukikio's stuffed toy really talk to her? Which is Harumi's true personality? A noteworthy series from an important artist. This set includes all four volumes of the series. (Rated 16 and older: violence, sexual situations, brief nudity, alcohol and tobacco use) --Charles Solomon … More
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