Striking The Right Note: Deadman Wonderland

Oh, boy, this show. Crazy and violent, sometimes to the point of being almost nonsense, it was still watchable as all hell, even if it did end in a rather ambiguous way.

For those that haven’t seen it, Deadman Wonderland revolves around a young man named Ganta being framed for the murder of his entire high school class. He is then sentenced to a famous private prison called Deadman Wonderland, where the inmates are forced to participate in sadistic games for the amusement of guests. Admission is how the prison funds itself, and prisoners win various prizes, including a reduction to their sentence, or they die horribly for the entertainment of the crowd.

That isn’t the worst part.

The worst part is that the prison has secret games for super wealthy donors only, where prisoners with enhanced abilities fight in death matches, which the donors can bet on. This is where Ganta finds himself after it is learned he has developed one of these special enhancements, the ability to use his blood as a weapon. All the special prisoners can do the same, but in different ways, and before he knows it, Ganta is fighting just to stay alive.

There’s also a weird albino girl who wanders around the prison as she pleases, and seems to know Ganta, but he doesn’t appear to remember her. It’s a really weird show, but a damn good one.

The opening credits, now, they are way above good.

Usually, I like to explain a bit about how the opening credits capture the essence of the show. With Deadman Wonderland, that gets hard. It does, but not in ways that are easy to explain. From the lyrics of the song “One Reason” by DWB featuring Fade, to the incredibly imagery, all washed in violent red hues, the opening is an experience perhaps, at times, more visceral than the show itself.

Above all, what it does do as an opening, besides being incredibly well made, is absolutely prepare you for the fact that this show contains a lot of violence, horror, and raises a ton of disturbing questions about for profit prisons and prisoner treatment. So, yeah, it definitely strikes the right note.

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