Serial Experiments Lain is a classic cyberpunk anime title, and one of the best anime titles ever.
This anime has it all, tonal and artistic consistency (consistently serious), solid story and character development, great animation and art direction, solid background music, and brain-twisting concepts for the serious anime fan who craves anime that lives up to its "thought-provoking" bill.
This anime covers a lot of ground in its 325 minute runtime, and despite so much content in a relatively short time, nothing feels rushed or forced. Inversely, there's been several anime titles with much longer running lengths that feel horribly rushed and incomplete due to abysmal writing and directing.
If you love cyberpunk and brain-twisting anime that's totally serious throughout the whole running length, then Serial Experiments Lain is essential viewing.
First of all, I'd like to say how glad I am that Funimation reissued this anime in a DVD/blu-ray combo pack last November. No longer is a gem like this in “out-of-print obscurity.” Serial Experiments Lain has been one of those anime titles I've heard of ever since I got into anime back in July of 2002, but never checked out since from the surface, didn't look all that appealing to me at the time. I made a gamble when Funimation was reissuing this anime by pre-ordering … more
My only regret concerning this series is that I took so long to get around to watching it. It is one of the most intelligent series that I have had the pleasure of viewing as of yet, and it becomes clear from the very first episode that the writers did their homework. I cannot stand it when a series throws out the names of poets and works of science and literature or uses famous works of art in its opening sequence, etc. in an effort to seem more intelligent and deep than they actually … more
Serial Experiments Lain is influenced by philosophical subjects such as reality, identity, and communication. The series focuses on Lain Iwakura, an adolescent girl living in suburban Japan, and her introduction to the Wired, a global communications network similar to the Internet. Lain lives with her middle-class family, which consists of her inexpressive older sister Mika, her cold mother, and her computer-obssessed father. The first ripple on the pond of lain lonely life appears when she learns that girls from her school have received an e-mail from Chisa Yomoda, a schoolmate who committed suicide. When Lain receives the message at home, Chisa tells her (in real time) that she is not dead, but has just "abandoned the flesh" and has found God in the Wired. From then on, Lain is bound to a quest which will take her ever deeper into both the network and her own thoughts.