Promotional artwork featuring main characters: Inori Yuzuriha (left) and Shu Ouma (right).
|Genre||Action, Romance, Science fantasy|
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Tetsurō Araki|
|Written by||Hiroyuki Yoshino, Ichirō Ōkouchi (assistant)|
|Music by||Hiroyuki Sawano|
|Network||Fuji TV (noitamina)|
|Original run||October 13, 2011 – March 22, 2012|
|Published by||Square Enix|
|Magazine||Monthly Shōnen Gangan|
|Original run||November 2011 – ongoing|
|Guilty Crown: Princess of Deadpool|
|Written by||Gan Saaku|
|Illustrated by||Production I.G, Nitroplus, redjuice|
|Published||April 25, 2012|
|Guilty Crown: Lost Christmas|
|Released||July 26, 2012|
Guilty Crown (ギルティクラウン Giruti Kuraun?) is a 2011 Japanese anime television series produced by Production I.G which aired on Fuji TV's noitamina program block from October 2011. The story revolves around Shu Ouma, a high school boy who inadvertently obtains an ability called "The Power of the Kings" that enables him to draw out items called "Voids" from other people. He is then thrown into the conflict between a quasi-governmental organization known as the GHQ and a resistance group called Funeral Parlor which aims to restore Japan's independence from the GHQ. In the process, Shu has to deal with the burden his ability puts on his shoulders and the horrific mystery of his past. The series incorporates elements of numerous genres, mostly drawing from science fantasy.
One manga adaptation has been published by Square Enix in their Monthly Shōnen Gangan which began in November 2011. A light novel was published by Nitroplus entitled Guilty Crown: Princess of Deadpool in April 2012. A spin-off visual novel named Guilty Crown: Lost Christmas was also developed by Nitroplus which came bundled with a 15 minute original video animation (OVA) tentatively named Guilty Crown: Lost Christmas. Critics praised the series' presentation but panned the plot for being jumbled and cliché.
Prior to the events of the main story, on December 24, 2029, a biological hazard known as the Apocalypse Virus plunges Japan into a state of chaos. This later became known as the Lost Christmas incident. Unable to contain the threat, Japan sought international help and the United Nations sent an organization known as the GHQ to their aid. The GHQ successfully contained the outbreak and restored a level of order at the cost of Japan's independence. Ten years later, a resistance organization known as the Funeral Parlor waged a campaign against the GHQ in order to liberate Japan once more.
The story begins when high school student Shu Ouma encounters a wounded girl named Inori Yuzuriha, the vocalist of a popular internet group Egoist, taking refuge at his film club's workshop. He helps her before the GHQ Anti Bodies storm the workshop and arrest her for involvement with the terrorist group Funeral Parlor. Shu follows the coordinates of Inori's robot to a drop zone where he meets Gai Tsutsugami, leader of Funeral Parlor, who asks him to safeguard a vial. As GHQ begins attacking the Ruppongi area looking for the vial, it shatters as Shu goes to rescue Inori when she becomes threatened by GHQ Endlave mechs. The vial contains the Void Genome, a powerful genetic weapon derived from the Apocalypse Virus that grants Shu the "Power of the Kings", an ability that allows his right hand to extract Voids, weapons of people's psyche given physical form. Shu then extracts Inori's Void and destroys the attacking Endlaves.
As events progress, Shu falls in love with Inori and reluctantly joins Funeral Parlor with the Void Genome, since it was originally supposed to be used by Gai, helping them with various operations in order to cripple the GHQ. During one such operation, Inori is taken by a boy named Yuu, "The Envoy of Daath", who possesses the second Void Genome. Shu's repressed memories return to him, revealing his sister Mana had been the first to be infected with the Apocalypse Virus and caused a massive explosion which spread the Apocalypse Virus across Japan: the Lost Christmas. Inori was created to hold Mana's soul to create a new race of humans after the Apocalypse Virus annihilates the current human population. Gai and Shu work together and Shu manages to stab Mana's stasis pod, unwittingly killing Gai in the process.
Two weeks since the second outbreak of the Apocalypse Virus, the GHQ seals off the area surrounding Ruppongi in Tokyo, now called Loop 7, leaving a large number of teenagers to take refuge at Tennouzu High School along with Funeral Parlor members Shu, Inori, Ayase and Tsugumi. As food and Apocalypse Vaccine supplies run low, Shu is elected the new student council president. While initially kind, as things continue to deteriorate, Shu becomes a tyrant, implementing a Void ranking system. Elsewhere, Gai is resurrected. Shu and the others eventually break out of Loop 7, though in the process Gai appears and severs Shu's right arm, transferring the Void Genome to him and declaring himself the "true king".
Gai protects Japan from being destroyed by the United Nations in an attempt to stop of the Apocalypse Virus. The mastermind behind the events in Japan is an ancient organization known as "Daath" whose purpose was to obtain Shu's power and Inori. Inori later lets herself get captured by "Daath" in order to protect Shu. Haruka Ouma, Shu's adoptive mother, betrays the GHQ and steals the third Void Genome and meets up with the rest of Funeral Parlor and the Kuhouin Group. Shu later injects himself with the third Void Genome. He then extracts his own Void, revealed as the power to assimilate the Voids of others and accept the burden of their characteristics. As events progress, Shibungi is reunited with Funeral Parlor and the Kuhouin Group, stating that Gai intends to cause the Lost Christmas event on a global scale and brings Dr. Kurosu Ouma's diary which reveals the origins of the Apocalypse Virus. The Funeral Parlor surround the GHQ Headquarters at Tokyo Bay and attack. Gai erases Inori's memories in preparation for her fusion with Mana. Shu encounters Yuu, who identifies himself as "Daath". After a fierce fight, Shu overpowers Yuu and proceeds to confront Gai, where he witnesses the rebirth of Mana. As a battle commences between Funeral Parlor and the GHQ, the Apocalypse Virus begins spreading across the planet from the GHQ Tower, crystallizing humans as part of the Natural Selection process.
Shu battles Gai, but is overwhelmed. Just as he is about to be killed, Inori's soul appears and Shu is able to draw out her Void and defeat Gai. Gai explains that the only way to stop the Fourth Apocalypse was to let Mana fulfill her destiny of starting it, after which she would finally be able to rest in peace, which is why he aided Daath. If not for this, Daath would only resurrect her again and again. As Gai embraces Mana, the Virus envelops them both and shatters. Gai's Void Genome transfers back to Shu's right hand. Shu awakens to find Inori, partially crystallized and blind, searching for him. Shu embraces her and activates his Void, absorbing everyone's Voids and taking all of the Apocalypse Virus onto himself. As he is about to be consumed, Inori sacrifices her own life to the virus, saving Shu. With the virus finally eradicated, the GHQ Tower begins crumbling and everyone rushes to escape, with the protagonists fearful that Shu could not get out. Some years later, Ayase, Tsugumi, Yahiro, Kanon, Souta and a now blind Shu celebrate Hare's birthday in a rebuilt Tokyo. Shu then sits on a bench beside a lake listening to one of Inori's songs while reminiscing about his past with her.
Guilty Crown was directed by Tetsuro Araki with the series' script supervision being handled by Hiroyuki Yoshino and assisted by Ichirō Ōkouchi. Jin Hanegaya from Nitroplus will also be assisting with the screenplay. The mechanical designs were done by Atsushi Takeuchi and prop designs handled by Yō Moriyama. The original character designs were drawn by Redjuice, with Hiromi Katō providing the character designs for the anime. Yusuke Takeda was the anime's art director. The animation production was done by Production I.G's Division 6.
When asked what circumstances led to his involvement, Redjuice responded that the production staff's illustrators and animators felt that his concept art exhibited a sense of compatibility with the final product. While Ryo of Supercell was providing the insert songs for the show, Redjuice himself was not participating in the project as a member of Supercell. Besides liking Inori, the main heroine of Guilty Crown, Redjuice stated that he had done many drawings of Tsugumi. The staff had no qualms with the cat-like ears of Tsugumi so Redjuice feels that he has slipped his personal tastes into the series. Redjuice also likes Kanon although she was not originally written into the scenario. As Redjuice has not worked with 3D CG much, he was able to learn a lot from the staff at Production I.G.
New York Anime Festival screened the first two episodes of Guilty Crown on October 15, 2011. The screening of the second episode was a world premiere as the episode did not air in Japan until October 20, 2011. At Anime Weekend Atlanta 2011, Funimation Entertainment announced that it would simulcast the series in October, followed by a DVD and Blu-ray release in 2012.
The music used in the Guilty Crown anime is composed by Hiroyuki Sawano. Both the opening and ending themes of Guilty Crown are written by Supercell. The first opening theme is titled "My Dearest" and is performed by Koeda. The CD single for "My Dearest" was released on November 23, 2011. The first ending theme is titled "Departures (Anata ni Okuru Ai no Uta)" (Departures ~あなたにおくるアイの歌~ Departures (Send your Love Song)?) and is performed by Egoist, a fictional band from the series. The single for "Departures (Anata ni Okuru Ai no Uta)" was released on November 30, 2011. A new 17-year old artist named Chelly provided the vocals. Chelly was picked by Ryo of Supercell after an audition of 2,000 candidates. Chelly also sang the insert song of Guilty Crown. The second opening theme is "The Everlasting Guilty Crown" by Egoist and the second ending theme is "Kokuhaku" by Supercell.
|Guilty Crown Original Soundtrack|
|4.||"Ready to Go"||4:16|
|9.||"close your eyes"||3:51|
|12.||"Release My Soul"||4:34|
|14.||"Hill Of Sorrow"||4:11|
|16.||"Home ～in this corner～"||3:48|
A manga serialization was published by Square Enix's Gangan Comics imprint in their Monthly Shōnen Gangan. The serialization began on the November 2011 issue of Monthly Shōnen Gangan. Five tankōbon volumes have been published.
Internet radio show
An Internet radio show named Guilty Crown Radio Council to promote Guilty Crown began airing every other Friday starting on October 7, 2011. The show is hosted by Yūki Kaji, the voice actor of Shu Ouma, and Ai Kayano, the voice actress of Inori Yuzuriha.
Nitroplus developed a spin-off visual novel named Guilty Crown: Lost Christmas (ギルティクラウン ロストクリスマス Giruti Kuraun Rosuto Kurisumasu?). The visual novel was previously known as Lost X. The scenario writer for this game is Jin Hanegaya, who also penned Demonbane. The game focuses on the "Lost Christmas" incident. The full version of the game includes a short 10-minute anime.
A side story novel titled Guilty Crown: Princess of Deadpool was written by Gan Saaku from Nitroplus, with illustrations done by a Production I.G and Nitroplus collaboration. A special version that came along with a special book cover was first sold at Anime Contents Expo 2012 in between March 31 and April 1, while the official release was on April 25. The first chapter was put up for public reading.
Anime News Network praised the presentation and described the series' script and characters as cliché while following the trend of presenting a standard anime trope before suddenly shifting the plot sideways. ANN praised the series' bravery on reinventing its plot but described the plot as jumbled and continued the trend of weak characters and clichés. THEM Anime Reviews agreed with ANN on the presentation and plot. THEM panned the pacing of the plot and called the characters unsympathetic with back stories that do not add depth to the characters.
- Lanson, Greg (September 8, 2011). "New "Guilty Crown" Promotion Video Streamed, Theme Songs Announced". Crunchyroll. Retrieved September 21, 2011.
- "Death Note Helmer Araki, supercell Involved on New Work". Anime News Network. July 7, 2011. Retrieved July 15, 2011.
- "アニメ旋風". Nitroplus. September 22, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
- Lanson, Greg (August 11, 2011). "Nitroplus Announces Guilty Crown Spinoff PC Game Project". Retrieved September 21, 2011.
- "10月期ノイタミナ『ギルティクラウン』公開直前！ キャラクター原案・redjuice氏も衝撃の「″鬼″すぎる」制作現場". Livedoor. September 23, 2011. Retrieved September 24, 2011.
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- "アニメ『ギルティクラウン』 音楽担当". September 11, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
- "Supercell Selects 15-Year-Old Singer for Next Album". Anime News Network. September 9, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
- "supercell、新ボーカル決定 ノイタミナ新アニメテーマに". Oricon. September 9, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
- "supercell、新ゲスト・ヴォーカリスト＆新タイアップ決定". BARKS. September 9, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
- "ニューシングルのリリースが決定！！！ 新ゲストボーカリスト「こゑだ」を迎えた新生supercell第一弾の詳細を発表！" (in Japanese). September 29, 2011. Retrieved September 29, 2011.
- "17-Year-Old Wins Supercell Audition to Sing Guilty Crown Songs". Anime News Network. September 8, 2011. Retrieved September 21, 2011.
- "ギルティクラウン ：挿入歌とエンディング曲に17歳の新人歌手を抜てき 2000人から選考" (in Japanese). September 9, 2011. Retrieved September 21, 2011.
- "［ギルティクラウン］挿入歌とエンディング曲に17歳の新人歌手を抜てき 2000人から選考" (in Japanese). Mycom Journal. September 9, 2011. Retrieved September 21, 2011.
- "アニメとゲームは友達です！". September 22, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
- "Square Enix Anime". Square Enix. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
- "「ギルティクラウン」ラジオ配信決定！" (in Japanese). Onsen. September 26, 2011. Retrieved September 26, 2011.
- "Guilty Crown Gets PC Game Spinoff from Nitroplus". Anime News Network. August 13, 2011. Retrieved September 24, 2011.
- Kamlinger, Carl (November 16, 2011). "ANN reviews episodes 1–5". Anime News Network. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
- Kamlinger, Carl (May 12, 2012). "ANN reviews episodes 13–22". Anime News Network. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
- "THEM Anime Review". THEManime.org. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
- Official website (Japanese)
- Visual novel official website (Japanese)
- Side story novel official website (Japanese)
- Guilty Crown (anime) at Anime News Network's Encyclopedia