I caused a teensy bit of a stir a few months back when I finally put . It incurred rancor from some of you lunatics; but just as many of you agreed with me about the flick being over-rated. However, even those in my camp were quick to add a qualifier or two about how GHOST IN THE SHELL the show is actually far better than GHOST IN THE SHELL the movie. Not being one to leave any Hulu video un-streamed, I went ahead gave this pilot the benefit of the doubt.
So… maybe it really just comes down to the soundtrack? Or maybe, more specifically, it’s just that Yoko Kanno’s music can infuse any material with an irresitable wealth of gravitas? I unsuccessfully tried to watch GHOST IN THE SHELL several times and wound up falling asleep on each attempt. I blamed the music. They were going for AKIRA’s same conceit of ironically juxtaposing a cyberpunk cityscape with tribal chants… and I'd call it "hypnotizing" as a euphemism for "snore-inducing."
Here, the score gives everything a sense of art and color that provides so much needed counter-weight to the super-serious cyber-espionage. The removal of ponderous, prattling diatribes about the nature of identity and such are also helpful. The general plot is nearly as no-nonsense as it is in the movie - - Kusanagi is still walking around government offices and fierce battlefields in a dance party unitard without much self-awareness, after all - - but it does seem more fun on account of the music and fleeter pacing.
Watch this episode, “Section 09" below and decide for yourself.