Friday, May 17, 2013

Time Travel, Steins;Gate and Anime

Besides being a dedicated fan of all things Japan-related, I'm also card-carrying lover of time-travel and related science fiction stories. I've read all the classics, including H.G. Wells' The Time Machine (and its "official" sequel, The Time Ships by Stephen Baxter), the Hyperion Saga which all Haruhi fans should read, and of course the alternate history classic Guns of the South. There's a rich tradition of stories about time travel in anime, too, starting with the archetypcal "person from modern Japan is transported back to the country's 'Warring States' historical period" genre (of which The Ambition of Oda Nobuna is the most recent example), along with various Groundhog Day/Endless Eight style repeating time loops, convenient wormholes that cause characters to "timeslip" if they encounter one, plus films like The Girl Who Leapt Through Time. One of the best stories time travel stories in years has been the visual novel and anime Steins;Gate, about Rintarou Okabe, a "mad scientist" who discovers how to send messages, and later himself, into the past, which naturally results in a lot of bad stuff happening that he has to fix. Last night I went to the movie theatre to see the new Steins;Gate movie, which was just about as awesome as it could have been. I want to go see it again tonight...

Steins;Gate is a story about love, time travel and Dr. Pepper.