An Invasion of the Mind – ID:INVADED

What happens when you see a very intriguing anime related post by one of your favorite guitarists ever? First, you miss read the Japanese. Second, you assume he is voice acting the pink-haired character shown in his IG post. Third, watch the first episode, realize five minutes in that it is in fact NOT Miyavi voice acting the brilliant detective Sakaido, but continue to watch anyway because it’s good.

Or was that just me?

Regardless of how you started watching “ID:INVADED”, it was one of the more intriguing plots for a story this past winter season. We follow the ‘brilliant detective’ Sakaido, in a very disjointed world, in the world of ‘ID’ or the mind of a killer. Sakaido is being tracked by his organization Kura, who specialize in interpreting these ID’s in order to track down some of the most notorious serial killers. The catch is that not just anyone with an interest can enter an ID Well, but only those who have killed before. With hints from the mysterious girl, always deceased, ‘Kaeru’ we begin to put together the true identity of killers. Many of whom are haunted by the ominous figure, ‘John Walker’.

I’d like to point out first and foremost that Studio NAZ has some very interesting people behind the scenes. As this series is an anime original. It’s quite the tale to be told, and closed more or less within 13 episodes. Given it combines a standard formula of genres, crime, psychology/psychological, as well as mystery in addition to the main appeal that makes the story work being Sci-fi; it’s a nice bundle of genres that I enjoy.

What the series does well, is that we are shown a lot of things first. We enter the ID Well right along Sakaido and put the clues together along side him. It’s only elaborated later on the when, where, why and how it all came to be. We get fed information as other agents discuss the capabilities of the Mizuhanome System, something that can inject and retrieve a detective in the ID Well, in addition to sensing trace particles of intention to kill, at real-world crime scenes. Given that it’s a relatively new system, seemingly only developed within the past five years of the timeline, thus there are large gaps in knowledge. Or least, that’s what we’re told.

Kaeru, in one of her less disturbing scenes.

Additionally, aside from the largest mysteries of the series; “Who is John Walker, and why is he in the minds of serial killers?” and “Who is Kaeru? Why does she always appear at the first victim in every well?”. There’s lots of smaller issues or ‘mysteries’ for the viewer to solve as the series goes. The relationships between everyone at Kura for one. For two, why is it only former detective Akihito Narihisagao that is entering the ID wells? As the series continues, we get more answers, but then as with real life, more follow up questions. Personally, because I’m not a super analytical viewer I found these mysteries and events fun to watch unravel, even if a few were very simple to solve.

In fact, it’s probably because I’m not particularly analytical that I enjoyed this series so much. Many people have pointed out flaws within the concept of the Mizuhanome, or the fine detailed flaws of the psychology being used. Which are fair and valid and I’ll leave it to those people to explain why the series is flawed.

I personally found a lot of good things about the series. One of parts obviously being the inclusion of Miyavi’s songs as inserts as well as the ending theme. While I did catch a few moments where the animation had some less then stellar scenes. Specifically, more then once did I notice something unintentionally off about character’s eyes. I believe due to the stylization of the eyes, and then partly due to animation issues. However, I found that most of the significant scenes, particularly fight scenes as well as the initial entry to a new ID Well to be fluid and enjoyable.

Akihito Narihisagao, a man who has seen better days.

I appreciated that Naruhisagao was our main protagonist. It allowed for to really dig into his mind, without actually visiting his ID Well. We get bits and pieces of backstory at a pacing and rate that felt natural to me. In addition the cast orbiting around him, particularly Hondoumachi, and Fukada Tamotsu get their time to shine. Even the main Kura officer Momoki and eventually, yes really, Kaeru, get parts of their stories presented and resolved.

Personally, the most important part of this series for me was that I wanted to watch it weekly. I never once fell behind, and I’m not someone who does great with weekly watching. I played along with my own ‘brilliant detective’ mode on, more often then not getting some things wrong, which was part of the fun. There were moments of dreaded info-dumping but nothing so obscure, out of left field or overly long that distracted from the series. I liked the pacing, action and plot of the series, coupled with the fact I wanted to know more. I genuinely wanted to know more about the characters, what would come next, how they would solve the case, and therefore was excited for the next episode.

I found “ID:INVADED” to be a series that I eagerly anticipated watching each week. It appears to have been well watched as a weekly series, so I highly recommend catching up with it when you can.


One comment

  1. Wonderful Miyavi 💖 I love and respect him. He is having so beautiful daughters. And his guitar -playing -skills are something incredible 🎸 ✌️ Interesting article, thank you! Have a beautiful day 🌸

    Liked by 1 person

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