After bending the rules of what's to be expected of an anime series like FLCL
and Gurren Lagann
, it's no surprise that studio Gainax
would go ever fuller down the rabbit hole with a quirky piece of entertainment like Panty & Stocking
. Inspired by America's version of televised animation, it's a odd duck of insanity that's certainly not for everyone. But those who keep on that vulgar roller coaster ride from the first episode onwards will find one of the standout anime of the new decade.
With personalities like these, Panty and Stocking are as far from "angels" as possible
The premise goes by this: two angels sent back to earth by bad behavior need to collect enough Heavenly currency by destroying as many evil Ghosts
as possible. There's Panty
, the in-your-face blonde who'd tends to prefer sex over duty, and there's Stocking
, the hot goth with a major sweet tooth. Their weapons are the clothing pieces they're named after, with quite a few scandalous battle-preparation scenes to boot. But sensually removing lingerie is just the tip of the iceberg on what this adults-only anime has in store. Throughout the series, sex tapes will be broadcast, new holes are explored for intercourse, and plenty of bodily fluids are dispensed. Even without any nudity, Panty & Stocking is meant for the older otaku through and through.
With the adults-only banner, Gainax seemed to have let loose on how creative the two angel's adventures will go. The actual success-ratio on entertainment value however is about 50/50 depending on the audience. Just as there absolute gems like the angel's ventures in gambling, high school popularity, and the lawyer scene, there were just as many duds like the character Chuck's
art film-esque tales and a whole episode that's just one big masturbation joke. The use of having two stories in one half-hour episode is obviously a reference to how most Western cartoons are done, but just how Metalocalypse got better with longer episodes, P&S's sixth episode and the series(?) finale were easily the most entertaining.
For people looking for a show with plenty of style, Panty & Stocking is a feast of epic proportions
Regardless of how mixed the actual story content Panty & Stocking is, it should at least be wholly praised for the presentation which is absolutely on fire. Gainax seemed to use all sorts of American animation to base the art style around from Invader Zim to Powerpuff Girls, and even mixed in plenty of weird touches like the random classic anime style, plenty of real-time exploding piñatas, and tons of written English dialogue. It's a clusterf*** for sure, but a clusterf*** that's consistently pleasing to the eyes. The soundtrack doesn't falter at all in following such visual fidelity with consistently awesome music.
There's no question that Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt is rife for debate and even has plenty of hit-and-miss material even for the die-hard fans, but if there's one thing that this series will have over most other anime for years to come is an unrelentingly well-presented work of originality. And as far as Gainax is concerned, they've created just the thing that they're known best for.