「宝物」 (Takaramono)

The ending wasn’t delivered exactly the way ‪I expected.

In fact, there was a lot of talking from both Gaku and Satoru as they tested each other in this psychological game. If I was confronting a killer a decade later, let me tell you – I’d probably be scared sh*tless or physically trying to strangle him. I guess Satoru had the upper hand here with the help of his friends and family, but he was really putting all his eggs in one basket by gambling with his tactics. I wasn’t particularly a fan with how it all went down. I get that the villain always has his spew at the end and this was Gaku’s, but I didn’t feel a strong enough connection with him either way. I didn’t empathize, sympathize or even care about him at that points because I didn’t feel like he was worth my attention anymore. He’s an evil man who deserves to be imprisoned and that’s all I hoped for. And that’s exactly what I got. There were moments that his relationship with Satoru made him more pitiful, but towards the end, I felt like Gaku was just a coward that deserved to fall to his death.

The epilogue was longer than I anticipated as well. Look at all the screen caps that I included – and there’s more where that came from. It was a nice peak at everyone’s lives and just how much they’ve grown up without Satoru. Misato even joins their group which was cute to see. It always pulls at my heartstrings when outsiders get invited into the clique as well. Satoru himself, has done very well as a mangaka. I envisioned a happy ending for him and I was right. Plus, as a bonus, given that his chances with Kayo went out the window completely, Airi returns! Gosh, I wish there was more of her in the back half of the story because outside of Sachiko, she wins best character. Even though she’s simply a friend, her impact on Satoru throughout this journey was instrumental.

By the end of the series, we still haven’t heard about how or why Satoru “revives”, only that he doesn’t experience them anymore. I don’t think it matters in the grand scheme of things how or why it occurred before, all that matters is that he used it to correct his future. If he no longer experiences these phenomena, maybe he’s already done what he’s “supposed to do” and therefore doesn’t need this “power” anymore. It’s not a big deal to me that it’s never explained. Normally this would drive me insane, however I can live with the fact that story is simply focused on other things. The revivals were mainly a tool used to move the story forward and whether or not the author decides to talk about it, doesn’t bother me.


Final Impressions

Boku Dake ga Inai Machi was probably one of the most anticipated series this season and because of that, there’s been a ton of eyeballs, and hype surrounding it. I’ve even had a ton of friends ask me about ERASED as non-average anime viewers and they thoroughly enjoyed it. As such, I would say that as a whole, even though it didn’t live up to the hype and epic-potential, the anime was good. It was a worthwhile journey to watch from beginning to end and following it week after week with all those cliffhangers, tested my patience. I think the strength of the series came from the complexity of all the characters, and just hearing the truth of human nature from a 29-year-old; an 11-year-old; and a adult’s point of view, made it that much more intriguing. I think where the series fell apart a bit, was its execution in its storytelling at the end. The ending was sloppy, not tied off particularly well and missing a lot of details which would’ve added more value to the overall story.

I don’t want to deter anyone from giving Boku Dake ga Inai Machi a shot because I do think it was a well done anime. Besides the awkward pacing, the animation and quality was consistent throughout and beautifully drawn in some cases. The soundtrack and OP/ED suited the show very well and added to the spooky/chill-down-your-spine feeling. The beginning starts off extremely well – setting up the story about Satoru and his “revival” abilities, introducing everyone you need to know and then pulling you in. The middle was a bit slower, but still a good demonstration of how Satoru’s actions in the past impact his future. Then the ending which confirms everyone’s suspicions… turns out to be a bit anticlimactic and very quick to jump to the resolution. It didn’t live up to the hype but it did live up to my expectations as a dramatic crime drama. The mystery aspect was great and even though it can be predictable, predictability does not make the series unenjoyable. I think learning about the serial killer’s motives were one of the key takeaways from the series. So in that regard, Boku Dake ga Inai Machi is not a series to take lightly and it will prove to be addictive to anyone watching from the beginning.


  1. I remember the feeling I had when I watched the first and second episode and what impact they had. It kinda started strong and finished a little weak in my opinion. Still a good series, but I feel that there could have been more especially during the middle part, at least the potential was there. Nevertheless one of the few animes worth watching this season.

  2. I went and read the manga after watching the last episode..they changed a lot. It was a very anime original ending so I’d recommend that everyone go back and read the manga. It comes out as two very different endings. I really wish they had went a little farther and had an extended epilogue. I would like to know what happens between Satoru and Airi. I’d like to learn a little more about Misato, how Kayo and Hiromi got together, see more of Kumi and just how everyone ends up.

    Otherwise, loved it. Definitely on my list for best anime this year.

    1. Yes and no – the epilogue still somewhat follows the manga ending, and the general themes of the confrontation between Satoru and Yashiro are maintained from the manga. It’s the sequence of events leading to it and the showdown setting that are original.

  3. they turned the villain from being a manipulative and cunning killer to be this “sad misunderstood” dude who just wanted someone to survive his.

    yeah series was overall good but really dropped the ball at some points. they should have went for anime original instead of forcing a manga ending that wouldnt work out that well with this much time left.

    1. How exactly is he not manipulative and cunning!? (right to the point where Satoru does his suicide act), they only tried to give him a bit more depth rather than leaving him just a cartoonish evil guy, it’s not uncommon for a criminal to develop feelings of obsession and even twisted love towards one of his victims (the opposite of stockholm syndrome, which actually exists and is called LIMA syndrome).

      1. no no, your missing the point.

        the scene was all “I understand you” which led to him being all “emotional and touching” that he was fine being captured.

        if he was just quite interested in keeping satoru alive as an opponent, or if wants it to be himself to deal the killing blow, it would have been fine. but they had to throw in some sappy shit as if he deserved that sort of pity.

        the manga did it a whole lot better with his obsession and attempting to kill each other. he and satoru were confronting each other head on as opponents… not as “kindred souls” like how the anime did it.

      2. the manga also already gives depth about yashiro’s character, his intentions and goals, and how he became like that, while the anime just goes “oh he was quite a sadist… except for people who survive I guess?”. the anime makes him just as a 1 dimensional character, then tried to squeeze in something to get people to feel something for him.

  4. While the ending is sloppy, I still think this and Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu are the best two TV anime series of the lustrum, or the best ones since Steins;Gate. The direction of episode 11 is particularly superb and eye-opening. Apart from Gaku’s creepy monologue and the remade OP with Satoru erased, the unexpected change of perspective to Sachiko and then the even more unexpected change of perspective to the child Satoru inside an adult body are brilliant as well. All these signify how the past fifteen years of Satoru’s life were spent. I have never seen such a skilful indirect narration before in any anime. The storytelling in all other but the last episodes is solid too.

    The suffocated
  5. Well, I guess in the end it’s not that terrible. They managed to deliver a decent finale despite only having 12 episodes at their disposal. I kind of agree with those that said maybe an anime original was better than a rushed finale. Still decent, though.

    If you enjoyed this anime, I strongly suggest you to read the chapters from 34 to 44 (basically from when Satoru wakes up). There is basically a whole arc they skipped, Satoru and Gaku’s final confrontation is much, much better and overall it doesn’t seem rushed.

    Still, I will give this anime the spot of best of the season. The objective guy inside me screams that Rakugo is the best one, but from a subjective point of view I liked Erased much more ( Kayo’s story won this <_< ), at least if we consider the real finale…. It's a tough battle.

  6. Calling it a “sloppy ending” is really a stretch, it’s a pretty good ending, it fulfilled the basics of a good ending and a bit more, you want a sloppy ending watch the ending of the live action version of Boku Dake ga Inai Machi, now that’s a really really sloppy ending.

    I judge the anime based on what i saw and the enjoyment i got out of it not by comparing it to something else (and i had a silly content smile on my face during the entire 2nd half of this episode), many good endings don’t even bother to add an epilogue but here we got a good ending were we see the fate of most of our fav characters and where there are no loose ends or unanswered questions which the show promised to answer then didn’t (and we get Airi finally re-meeting Satoru, his reaction to seeing her was really heart-warming and well animated).

    Overall i’m quite satisfied with both the ending and the show as a whole and would highly recommend it to anyone.

  7. I liked the earlier incarnations of Satoru more than the last one, which was a bit too ideal to really connect with. And as far as 2000s go, “loser”-Satoru was more likeable than “successful mangaka”-Satoru.

    The ending felt more symbolic and schematic too, with not enough real meat on the bones so to speak, compared to what was before (especially 1988 time period). Somehow I feel a bit cheated even though it was really good, but the slope went downwards, and there was more promise than there was outcome.

    1. In the manga, Show Spoiler ▼

  8. A translated interview with the anime director, Ito Tomohiko and Boku Dake’s mangaka, Sanbe Kei:

    Some interesting points:
    Q: In terms of the anime, did you want to include as many of the manga’s elements as possible?

    Ito: That’s right. We tried not to leave too much out. Even if the way it’s conveyed is different, we wanted to end the story in the same place. And in the end, I think we somehow managed to get there.

    Q: And the manga is now heading towards its final chapter.

    Sanbe: I’ve had a lot of difficulty trying to decide how to end it. I have to fill a certain number of pages…but the anime doesn’t have the time to cover it all, so they have to be more straightforward. But I also think that we’re effectively covering the same ground.

  9. Even the shipping got ERASED. Nvm. It’s as fulfilling as it can get. The hero, after all, always triumphs in the end.

    Hopefully with the success of Boku Dake, we’ll hear a lot more from Sayuri.

  10. While I had my issues with episode 11, the epilogue of this final one was very well done with all of the kids now grownup and happy.
    When I saw Satoru blushing at the sight of Misato, I thought that this might go somewhere, but I guess that he was just drunk. 😉
    Anyone who could explain the meaning of the name plate with Satoru’s foot prints? A city honor for waking up after 15 years? For catching a long time criminal?
    btw. what ARE the charges against Yashiro? Only the supposed attempted murder of Satoru since the murder happened over 15 years ago? Statute-barred prosecution in Japan?

  11. To quote Yahtzee Croshaw: “This is when the narrative began to shit itself, but in small, manageable ways, like a budgerigar.”

    The ending wasn’t quite as solid as what came before; a little rushed, a little light on detail (relative to the manga, anyway). It was still pretty good, and I recognize that mysteries are hard to get right. My expectations are automatically calibrated downward for these, rather than something like action schlock which anime gets right pretty often. And I still feel Boku Dake was significantly better than the norm.

    Of course the anime cut out chunks of Airi’s return, which is an unforgivable offense, but that’s just waifu shitting on my part.

  12. Oh..so good T.T
    Its like we are looking at these kids grow up 😛

    The Spider Thread sequence last episode and the scene when Yashiro gets caught this episode.
    The bgm has that Yuki Kajiura dot Hack feel (as she is in charge of music).

    Satoru really made good use of his restarts.

    So Aya went with Osamu?
    What made Misato care so much about Satoru after coma?

    Satoru’s mom.
    In the first episode she smokes and drinks beer.
    I guess the 15 years tending to her son in the Revival timeline changed her.
    I like the mind reading moments and the “youkai me” reply in thought.

    Same here I want to know the origin of the Revival ability.
    If I take a step back for a wider view I start thinking of Death Note and Mirai Nikki.
    Some kind of God given power out of boredom.

    Though its good that he didn’t need to repeat the loop like in Punch Line.

  13. Overall one of my favorite shows of the season. It was so easy to get drawn in and, before you know it, the episode was over and you’re left wanting more.

    Seeing the various characters with happy endings here, even Yuuki being married and Misato being friends with everyone, was very heart-warming.



    ….so Satoru x Misato ship now? lol

  14. Not a bad adaptation but it felt like the final arc of the manga ( not sure if there is a LN) had a more coherent ending since Airi sort of played a bigger role rather than simply showing up at the end. It just felt more complete

  15. I’ll admit, I think I prefer this ending over an original ending. I don’t know what they would’ve done with the original ending, but I kinda dread the thought of A-1 making an ending where one more revival happens, and then Kayo ends up with Satoru. That would’ve been happy, but then it would only be fan service, so I’m glad it didn’t happen because now the story is its own. If Satoru is this satisfied about how his life turned out to be, then there is absolutely no reason for me to not be satisfied as well. Except for Gaku, Kayo’s mom and her boyfriend, I loved absolutely everyone, even Misato at the end of it (especially Sachiko obviously). It’s really mysterious how this anime managed to exceed my expectations with most of the characters.

    However, I agree it’s not flawless. For me, post Kayo’s rescue, it got kinda slower than it was before, merely focusing on saving the other victims, until the shell shocks came back at the end of episode 10. For me it didn’t fare well as a mystery, because Satoru and his friends would only focus on saving the victims, which was a good direction because the story likely set itself up to be a dramatic thriller to begin with, but it made Satoru’s return to the present to find out more about the killer kind of a waste of time if he was only gonna focus on saving the victims with a sort of disregard for the clues he collected from the present, which he should’ve been more careful about. Some of the aspects of time travel didn’t make any sense, but I’m not gonna talk about them because as Cherry said, it was used merely as a tool to move the story forward, rather than being at the center of it like in Steins;Gate. And I also agree about the ending. It could’ve been better, but I still liked how Satoru played mentalist and manipulated the mindset of Gaku to his advantage, which was really smart.

    Those are the only flaws I personally found. I don’t need to talk much about the positives. The characters were endearing. The cliffhangers were surprising, unfair and heart rending, which really hooked me in. All aspects of the visuals and the music just fit and were quite the joy for my audiovisual senses. The voice acting was quite good (both of Satoru’s voices were superb). The direction for delivering the story, including Satoru’s different voices, the animation, the sense of danger and etc. was amazing.

    ERASED has its ups and downs sure, but as a whole, I supremely enjoyed it and am so glad to have been on this ride from the very beginning. Like some people said above, this and Rakugo are the 2 best anime of the winter season. Now my Thursdays are gonna be empty ;_;
    The next season had better make up for it.

  16. I’m pretty sure I could find some flaws here and there if I scrutinized it, but nope, from me it will only get praise and claps. It’s not a Mushishi, but it’s been a long time since I was able to watch a anime that by the end I still thought was awesome, so yeah, I’m not gonna trample these pure feelings of mine.

  17. Boku dake ga is the story of a mangaka overcoming a writer’s block, failed creativity, and personal isolation by writing a fictionalized autobiography about himself as a child saving his classmates, thus learning at the end of the show, how to represent heroism sincerely. He makes a couple attempts, portrayed as revivals (= rewrites).

    As to whether or what in the show is “real” I don’t know what that means, but the frame and sense of the psychological and emotional narrative so outweighs the surface plot or mystery that heightened melodrama, crude symbolism, and internal inconsistency are not problems.

    bob mcmanus
  18. I have got to say even at its last episode, Boku Dake ga Inai Machi still tested my cliffhanger patience. It epilogued every characters ending…. but where is Airi! Alas finally!
    And it also kept me wondering if Satoru did jumped back to the future or not, until he finally met Airi and it was confirmed he lived in his alternate timeline.

    All in all I am really impressed and like this anime, I think it was one of the best time travelling, slice of life and investigative suspense anime (well El Psy Congrue is still be best). And hell yeah I am so stucked on RE:RE: now.

  19. I just have one request to make of you Cherrie, don’t pick up any series for summer season if you’re going to be posting them 4-5 days after they air, in a sense you’re giving people blue balls who wish to talk about the episode right after. Now Takaii does a fantastic job at this, blogging almost as soon as episode airs!

      1. People like you always that same phrase and I’m sick of it to be honest, here’s the deal, if you pick up as show and understandably have no time to cover it on time due to IRL problems (which everyone has, inb4 you turn this on me) they should stop covering and let someone who can and be happy to do it because they have the the time and like the show!

        If you don’t have time to do something, just don’t do it, do what you have time for instead!

      2. Honestly, since this is a free service, you really don’t have a right to complain, I mean you can, but you just end up sounding like a self-entitled jerk. If you have to wait longer then you just have to deal with it. No big deal.

        Bamboo Blade Cat
    1. I’ve mentioned in many other posts that I was preoccupied with other things and yes – I was delayed because of it. So I apologize if I’ve disappointed you for posting late; I haven’t even had the time to go back and read comments to respond, never mind try and tend to the site with the same attention that I used to.

      Would it make you feel better if I didn’t blog anything? Or would you like an explanation for my absence? I don’t know about this upcoming Spring season, so maybe I really won’t blog anything. However, the reason I’ve been late posting is because I’ve actually been busy moving across the country, getting a new job, new house, not to mention not having any family and help out here… SO! I’d like to ask for a bit of patience from readers during this time. We got the preview out; of which I practically did in a span of 3 days… plus I’m still blogging other shows and running the site in the background. I appreciate the concern that I’m so late (trust me I know) but I hope you’ll be a bit more understanding the next time someone (not just myself) is delayed. I DO feel bad, it’s not like I’m sitting here trying to give people blue balls o_O

      TL;DR – I be busy. Sorry.

  20. Best Anime of 2016 hand down (for me).I like it since begin to read manga version around 3-4 years ago.Hope it will get anime,and It does. Now, still wait to finished manga version (on ch40 new, a few more to finish).I like anime ending and I hope manga version ending will be good one too.

  21. The anime didn’t do itself any favors by starting off so strongly, so it was a tough task to finish on an equally strong note. Regardless, still one of the better anime of the season, if not the best.

    Bamboo Blade Cat
  22. Series far exceed my expectations, even ending-wise. In recent anime series and the ideal going around in most of them, is the fact that we are left with no actual ending and are forever feeling ‘unsatisfied’ with the anime and always the notion of ‘unfinished business’ or wait for season 2 or go finish it in the manga, but this I must say was the best ending I’ve seen. I cried many tears when Kayo showed up, she lived and the stress that was built up for almost 7 episodes had left me feeling like I was choking for some time and someone just helped me breathe again.

    I can say not many anime are able of making you submerge in a story with wonderful animation, intense charecters and by far a hint in every scene. I can say I was always looking for clues because thats the kind of anime it was – a full rounded one where each scene is just as important as the rest. (Like Kenya saying: Satoru’s goodbyes always seemed like he won’t be there the next day – but same episode, Yashiro does what he does, and damm 15 years..)..

    Though I stil am curios about the guy at the start who Satoru’s mum says “does he know me?” and was about to kidnap a girl and let go of her, or so it seemed. I think that perhaps was either a way to deter our mind from what was going to happen next or a way to show how Satoru’s revival works. I still don’t know.

    Regardless, amazing series with a conclusive ending and one similar to the satisfying one of FMA brotherhood (vs its older unecessary predecessor older version), all my open wounds from watching this anime have been healed for sure =)..

    Oh and with that said, I won’t deny that I am in love with Kenya!

    Cheers, M.

  23. I think Boku dake ga Inai Machi is a story that gave me some questions in the first episode and gave the answers in the last. It´s completely logical the investigation and the actions that Satoru did to save Kayo. I didn´t care about the revival origin or process at all. I love how he was changing during the time traveling, from a solitaire wolf to a hero with comrades and his relationship with Yashiro. I felt anxious watching his efforts and enjoyed his friendship with Airi, she was a real hope for him. Satoru child and adult were two characters in one, well balanced in their interactions with everyone. This original story is the best supernatural and mystery anime in the last two years, because each episode doesn´t change it´s quality and intrigue. I´m very pleased with this one and Shouwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjuu, the winner in the drama and romance category, in my opinion.

  24. Though I don’t have right to say which ending is better (haven’t read the final chapter of the manga), it didn’t feel like “not an anti-climax ending” (refer to last episode of Grimgar, which might get another season if their LN sales are in TOP 10 in Japan Charts).

    To me, it feels like a good closure; the last scene was neither an open-endings nor a final ending, but I would love to see more, especially with news of the author creating a spin-off of this story. 🙂

  25. Ok, now do yourself a favour, scrap the last couple of episodes and go read the manga from chapter 32. While not the best read either, the final arc in the manga makes much more sense than this… crap.

    Man, this is the season of the disappointment. I didn’t watch much series, but all of them screwed up somehow. Utawarerumono got all of the hype from the long awaited sequel and trashed it just awesome, Heavy Object came from Index creator but looks written by a 10y old dickhead instead. Every episode you don’t know if you have to grin at the screen like an Idiot or destroy your forehead with some powerful facepalm. Even Gate felt so rushed it detracted greatly from enjoyment. And then we have this ‘erased’ that screwed up in the last arc. It looks a completely different series, a hint that maybe the author was short on ideas on how to continue. Leaving aside how that revival thing was never justified at all, all of the build-up from the first part goes into: “I saved everybody but paid the price instead of them”. Given how actually Japanese is this line of thought, I didn’t watch it developed so bad since Yuuki Yuuna. And yet this series is still one of the best of the season. Lets you wonder about the rest…

  26. long story short, the ending was a letdown — which wasn’t exactly a surprise as there are only 12 eps. the series was obviously aiming for a suitable closure for its own narrative (as opposed to the manga), but in doing so, it gave up a lot of the things that would have made this series a whole better.

    I guess my main beef is Yashiro-sensei, whose manga version was way more compelling and malevolent, and therefore more effective as a creepy bogeyman. He committed his crimes (he’s a twisted psychopath after all) to fill a compulsive void within himself, and did not overly fixate on Satoru. At the end, this Yashiro (anime) feels more like a defanged, half-baked, tortured version of what he could have been.

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