「辿りついた未来」 (Tadoritsui ta Mirai)
“The Future Reached”

At last, Dimension W has reached its finale, but before then, our hero needs to mope. It’s a fairly common routine, really, in stories like these, especially where amnesia is involved—it’s one last chance for the hero to question his motivations, and then hopefully find new resolve to continue on. I’m not always very sure how I feel about scenes like these; on one hand, it’s important for the hero to have an internal struggle as well as an external, but on the other hand it can mess with the flow to just have the hero crash like this, and may risk character assassination if the angst seems too contrived, and the hero too melodramatic. In our case, I suppose we at least get some pretty symbolism out of it. And I also think the scene was as much for Mira’s sake, as it was for Kyouma’s. It makes for a good test of their relationship. Kyouma evidences a trust in his partner by allowing her to jack his brain (even after she flashes a painful looking instrument; where’s that supposed to go?), and also serves as a nice bookend to the series with the Kyouma-slapping gag.

And it’s only after Kyouma has sorted out his baggage that the story can truly end. How does it go? Well, Kyouma’s story fleshed out okay, but I’m afraid it may have been at the expense of everyone else’s. Loser gets his revenge for his poor wife and makes his peace, but despite his high-end gear, has relatively little impact except to lend Kyouma his cool toys. Salva is awfully content with having come all the way to Easter Island to accomplish basically nothing, and we still don’t have an explanation for why he treated his cyborg-lady-retainer like a douche. And the villain turned out to be just another crazy nihilist in the end, though I suppose that’s the kind of character that’s very satisfying to finally beat up.

So, yeah, despite all of Dimension W‘s many threads, Kyouma’s story had to carry a bit. I was overall satisfied with it. In particular, I was glad they managed to work Miyabi into it, giving her a more active role than just being her husband’s albatross, unlike Loser’s wife. With the theme about possibilities, it’s important that Miyabi and Kyouma made a choice together to destroy the One Ring. And, hey, I like Miyabi, so it’s good to see her being a positive influence on her hubbie until the very end.

While Kyouma’s story may have been the stronger portion of the finale, it’s not like the rest were not wrapped up. We clearly know who lives and who doesn’t (I’m just going to assume that K. K. croaked, because I don’t care about him). Easter Island is fixed. And Elizabeth apparently becomes the Batman (conveniently, she already has the motif). And, perhaps most importantly, Kyouma finally acknowledges Mira as being ‘alive’, and also by her name, which is a long way from how he treated the pile of junk at the beginning of the series. Everything is tied up neatly with a bow. Is it too neatly, though? Was Dr Yurizaki showing up at the end a convenient deus ex machina? Well, yes. But it wasn’t pulled out of nowhere. I think it was fairly clear by this point that the good doctor wasn’t ‘dead’ per se, and his green coil was one of the last remaining loose ends of the story, so it was good to see it being used. What’s it actually for? Dunno. That’s going to be one of the open questions left behind by Dimension W, along with what Mira feeling a heartbeat on witnessing Elizabeth mourn her father, and the implications about the brain not being able to house the soul. After all the talk about ‘possibilities’, perhaps it’s appropriate to leave some thing open like this. I’m not saying we’re necessary going to get a sequel, but the mere possibility is nice to think about.

Full-length images: 04.


Final Impression

It’s inevitable that there will be those that there will be those that will compare Dimension W with its manga source and be disappointed. I can understand their grief. I haven’t read the manga, but I’m told that much was cut from it to create this anime. Such is the fate of pretty most adaptations in this day and age. A manga basically has as many pages as it wants to tell its story, so long as there are readers, while a one-cour anime like this one is confined to a mere 12 episodes. Even for a series that is based on a finished and not particularly long manga, like Boku Dake ga Inai Machi playing this same season, fitting all the available material is simply not possible and judicious cutting is required. In fact, the strength of an adaptation very often rests on a director’s skill with a knife. Sometimes, the cuts are seamless. Sometimes, there is left obvious scars.

Since I, again, haven’t read the manga I can’t really access adaptation decisions, and even if I did I still would have to ultimately judge the Dimension W as its own creature. The former is an interesting decision, but the latter is what matters in the end. Did I enjoy watching Dimension W? I would say a definite yes. It had style in its designs, it had entertainment value in its action and the turns of its plot, and it had substance through its sci-fi, examining technology’s affect on human limitations, and both the existence and removal of those limitations on individuals. It turned out to be much more of a personal story than sweeping societal commentary, but the substance was there, and elevated Dimension W from being just another action romp.

Some may criticise Dimension W for going too fast, and on some level I agree, but I didn’t really have a problem with it save for in episode 03 and 04, in the dam arc. This is a different issue to the one about things being cut out of the adaptation compared to the manga—I can’t really comment too much on that one, save to say that I didn’t really miss anything. Sure, there were many angles that i wanted to be explored more—I love my worldbuilding in speculative fiction—but those were things I wanted, which is not the same as things I missed. If I couldn’t get them, that would be a shame, but they were not critical. A one-cour series has to have a very set scope. The real issue is whether the material they chose to include was rushed, and my judgment was that the series was compact, but functional. I know some have had problems following along or found things confusing, but I didn’t have those issues personally—it may partially because I’m fairly willing to mentally gloss over technobabble. And I actually think that Dimension W ultimately shouldn’t be too easy to understand, because on some level it is philosophical, even spiritual. It doesn’t reach the same level of murky examination into the human condition as its spiritual predecessor, Darker than BLACK, but some ambiguity is still required.

Maybe Dimension W‘s relationship with DtB, which I was very fond of, made me go easy on it. We certainly don’t get enough cyberpunk-ish anime like Dimension W, and any that manage to tell its story competently from beginning to end has my seal of approval, and I daresay Dimension W did better than that. Even though this season of it has more or less been a complete product, I hope it does well in sales to indicate a certain level of interest in this kind of show that will prompt the production of more of it or its like. A third season of Darker than BLACK will probably never happen, but more Dimension W will be a nice alternative.


      1. There’s nothing SOL about Gemini of the Meteor! The main reason why a lot of Darker than Black fans hate DtB:GotM is due to the changes that time have inflicted on Hei who turns him into a drunken asshole who likes smacking kids around!

        Personally I liked the changes. Of course you really need to see Gemini of the Meteor through the eyes of the OVA’s which describe what happened to Hei and Yin in between the 2 seasons.

      2. I personally don’t think Gemini of the Meteor was as bad as some others make it out to be. I think its real problems were that 1) it needed two cours like its prequel 2) the OVAs should have come first and most of the dislike comes from it being a very different animal compared to DtB1, and in particular it wasn’t even centrally Hei’s story.

    1. Also Mira is some kind of Family for him now, She is not his Daughter nor his Woman, but something in between perhaps. The Robot body she use, without Kyoma she would not been build. Also thanks to Kyoma the daughter of the Dr. can be alive inside this robot body. Perhaps the Dr. found the “hall of Souls” Dimension where all Souls flys when someone dies (okay, thats now religion stuff). So thanks to her, both are not feeling lonely. But Elizabeth can become envious and fallen to the dark side… She lost her daddy, and now seeing these two doing fine, can create pain in the chest. If not taken care of it, this pain could poison the heart and more. this pain could turn into anger, and anger into death wish… Well, you know the drill

      And he got afraid, to be that near to the creator of life…

      i still have other postings on reddit, but i am now to lazy to copy them here.

  1. Mira is just too darn cute. Dat ‘kyu!’ when she gets slapped on the head…

    Despite my frustrations with the serie, I’m going to miss it. I wish they adapted less of the manga, if nothing else then so I could have future seasons possible.

    Oh well! It was nice to see this story animated.

  2. I’m glad they didn’t go with deus-ex genesis revives everyone/reverses time anime original ending, that would have been so cliche the rating would have dropped by 2 points for entire show!

  3. Not a bad series overall IMO. Although certainly vanilla in plot elements (amnesia, villains, the distinctive shounen competition in the latter third), Dimension W met the entertainment factor handily. The show was just easy to watch every week, never once having a moment where the thought “this is boring” crept into mind. Dimension W is no DtB, but it certainly succeeded in its own right, I wouldn’t mind a second season at all.

    An interesting note for this series too is Funimation’s direct involvement with production. Combined with Toonami’s resurrection of FLCL, I’m wondering if this may be the beginning of experimentation into adaptations and anime-original content tilted–if not directed–towards Western audience tastes by taking advantage of outside (i.e. outside of Japan) investment sources. Having foreign entertainment groups becoming involved with the actual creation of anime certainly implies some form of underlying shift is occurring.

    1. There are already cases of anime that seem to deliberately have a more ‘Western’ bent, like, er, Space Dandy, but I don’t know about direct and influential foreign investment. I don’t even know how big a hand Funimation had in the actual production, though. In any case, the traditional license model is unwieldy and unsuitable for the information age.

      I wonder whether this foreign involvement will significantly later the anime landscape in the long run. Looking at the localisation decisions that have been made about anime historically—from the relatively benign soundtrack changes in Disney’s Castle in the Sky to the abomination that is Cardcaptors—it’ll be interesting to keep an eye out for subtle cultural shifts.

      1. localisation decisions

        *thinks of all those “enhancements” for the said Japanese anime shows to even be allowed to be aired in NA TV channels in the first place*


  4. Funny enough, Loser’s wife (As well as the Spanish-themed duo) got a bit more show time here than in the manga, iirc …

    Overall, I think 3Hz did a good job transposing what was in the manga into an animated form given what they had to work with. Especially when the manga isn’t that far ahead as of right now. (the manga was only 3-5 chapters ahead last time I checked)

  5. There’s quite a bunch of things they kind of glossed over. Firstly, the double coil. Now that the prince, who is one of the head honchos of NTT, saw that Mira has it on her, he probably would have mentioned that to the other directors. That, or he might conclude that the double coil was what was caught in the footage that showed a functioning coil on Easter Island and is unlikely to keep quiet about it.

    And they just glossed that over?

    Also, Ellie is now an orphan. She’s smart, but she’s still a kid. Is nobody going to bring that one up and just let her loose on her own?

    Also, what is Dr. Yurizaki’s actual motive with the double coil anyway?

    1. In fact, the realisation that Mira is actually a robot by one of the heads of NTT should probably cause quite a lot of problems in the long run too. Is that not going to be addressed?

      1. While I agree that Dimension W leaves plenty of open questions (possibilities!), I should note that the prince may or may not feel gratitude to Kyouma for saving his life which would affect how hush he decides to stay, Ellie is supposed to be a professional and renowned collector, and the real secret of Mira is not that she is a robot, but that she is sentient and not just a sophisticated AI.

      2. Yes, but think of it in the POV of the NTT.

        For half the NTT, of which the prince is a member of, they are seeing this peppy girl who acts so human that she’s got to be human.
        She turned out to be a robot.

        For the other half of the NTT, they see this robot (who barely managed to act robotic) suddenly crying, panicking, asking to be praised/patted, getting terrified of ghost stories and generally, acting exactly like a human.

        The biggest mystery far as I am see it is why hasn’t NTT responded to this yet.

      3. patience; it seems that the next arc of dimension w might tackle all those things. I do agree with passerby that the prince may decide to stay quiet about mira’s existence tho

      4. @Mincemaker
        From what I remember, all robots are supposed have an obviously robot-like feature to distinguish them from humans, which in Mira’s case is her head-flaps. Therefore NTT should be more likely to make observation B. On doing so, will they conclude that she’s sentient? Blondie simply remarked that AI was awfully sophisticated these days, though he may have been playing at wilful ignorance. Salva may or may not follow the same approach. In the spirit of Dimension W we don’t actually know what the future holds, of course—unless we get a second season. Cross your fingers.

      5. @Passerby

        I also recall it mentioned in episode 2 or 3 (?) that humans do also wear fake robotic-parts-like accessories in the name of fashion. Considering how human Mira is, it’s just as likely for NTT members, staffs and directors to think that Mira’s a human wearing such accessories.

        Remember that Segmeyer didn’t recognise Mira as a robot straight away. He had to actually examine her to realise that.

      6. Either way, would they care to distinguish Mira from a complex AI? Maybe, maybe not. Kyouma was loathe to accept Mira’s sentience, and while he may be a cynical grouch, he had to put up with Mira’s insistence and even saw her cry.

      7. Considering that Mira is a Yurizaki and also a robot with AI so advance it’s near indistinguishable from true sentience, I am very sure that the NTT will gladly get their hands on her, at least so they can poke her brain and figure out exactly what Dr. Yurizaki was up to during his years of absence and whether they can get their hands on it and monetise it.

      8. At this point we’re steering into the realm of speculation, including into who knows that Dr Yurizaki had an adopted daughter. Could it be a source of tension with NTT in the future? Most possibly. If the anime doesn’t make an issue of it in the present, we have to take it at face value. If there was a second season, or if you move on to the manga, I’m sure this won’t be the last we hear of this, but otherwise we can only guess at hypotheticals, which I suppose is fun in its own way.

  6. This story threw my brain into motion! The moment I realized that Dimension W contained all the possibilities of what could’ve been was Earth shattering. No wonder the coils run on a limitless supply of energy, it’s because the possibilities are endless and there is never one set possibility until one is actually realized! I do feel that they rushed the series a bit but with budgets and things like that I understand. It takes a lot of everything to create an anime. I was able to follow the storyline in the beginning but towards the end I was thrown into the materialization of dimension W (if you haven’t watch the series yet that means all of the place hah). There are still so many questions left unanswered or possibilities I should say. What is that double coil about and the instruction to learn about their hearts (more vague directions from the doctor), and that “heartbeat”? How did the doctor even intervene between reality and wherever he is now in order to give the what I am assuming is the double coil to Mira? And that boss battle? Let’s just say that the antagonist ( who by the way looks like Orochimaru from Naruto) was created where it shouldn’t have been, like it had no substantial reason. The doctor ended up creating something but decided that it was too dangerous and pulled the plug sending his protégé into an outrage consoled only by dear “daddy” on the other side … Not communicating is always the source of problem in these things! If the doctor would have just talked to the his protege before hand and told him that this is too much and human life is too precious to waste then this madness would not have resulted at least to the extent it did… however for the story to have some enemy I suppose it had to work out this way. In then human beings cannot stop progress. If you don’t do it somebody else will regardless of the means to do so #ethics. I am a little upset that the author chose to explore the possibility in which Kyoma broke the Genesis. For those of you who are believers in progress and hard work you would have just about lost your mind here. I know I did. Regardless of what Kyoma says in the anime, as long as the Genesis stays broken all those people who were killed by Seamore ( I know that is not his name hah) in making it basically died for nothing. Of course it saved Kyoma but there needs to be a further good that comes of this Genesis. Teleportation is a colossal step for mankind. (Perhaps that is why it was destroyed.) The end of the series was another materialization of Dimension W. I could’ve handled one possibility in the ending or even a few however there were too many and honestly they need to make another series to explain them all. Perhaps that is the beauty of that which is titled Dimension W and the irony of the series. I give it a 8/10. What ya’ll think about it ? I’m dying to know. Holla at ya gurl Ernie G!

    Ernie G

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