Back when I was living around Chicago in high school, I’d listen to Mancow’s Morning Madhouse sometimes on Q101 and I don’t think I’ll ever forget the… nature of how that show played. Mancow would do the usual shock jock routine for most of the show, and then he’d suddenly get really, really serious - - saying some intense bon mot like “Pedophiles should be executed” - - and none of his sidekicks would know what to say next. There’d then be a long stretch of dead air before somebody finally hit the button to cue the station ID bumper and start playing commercials.
The tonal jumps between commercials breaks in STEINS GATE aren’t as drastic as that, but they’re jarring enough to draw me about as far out of the viewing/listening experience. Even if I’ve noticed a routine where the first chunk of the show’s a cheery sitcom and the second’s some heady, doom-laden science fiction, it’s still something I’m not prepared for. More so, it makes me think that the creators of this show haven’t got a clear idea of the story they want to tell, which is the same thing I suspected during the latter portions of [C] – CONTROL.
Once again, I wonder if this is a case where a good dub job might better my appreciation of a show. I might latch onto the characters and their banter; I might find the tonal shifts to be more graceful. Some have suggested that it’s an anime with the sensibility of BBC programming and maybe that’s just it - - I’ve never been a fan of MONTY PYTHON or DR. WHO. As is, it’s not an awful show, but I’ve given it two hours to grab my interest, and it hasn’t, so it’s time to look for something else.