I’ve spoken at length recently about my elitist tendencies, about how I love nothing more than to trek off the beaten path in order to hunt down the more “exotic” anime, the kind of anime that pays no heed to current trends or tropes, but instead does its own weird and wonderful thing. Not only that, but to then pat myself on the back in regards to my overwhelmingly superior taste in shows. Whilst this tendency does run the risk of alienating other anime fans (understandable, given that it does make me out to be quite the toad), it does have the advantage of giving me the opportunity to unearth hidden gems, older shows buried beneath a mountain of newer, shinier anime, using my platform as a blogger. This is something that I discovered quite recently upon reviewing one such show: Gankutsuou.
Gankutsuou, or The Count of Monte Cristo, is the 14-year-old (I’m striking while the iron is red-hot here, people!) anime adaptation of Alexandre Dumas’ novel of the same name. It follows the titular Count as he exacts his revenge on the trio of men, all of whom belong to the upper class society of Paris, responsible for framing him for a crime he didn’t commit and young Albert, the naive son of one of these men, as he tries to unravel the mystery behind the bizarre goings-on that begin to take place shortly after their chance(?) encounter. Gankutsuou is a beautiful blend of timeless themes, including revenge and man’s capacity for evil, a futuristic setting, and supernatural elements that, instead of contrasting with each other, as you might expect, compliment one another and distinguish it from Dumas’ classic novel. Nevertheless, it is both criminally underrated and rarely discussed, so it is my aim, in reviewing it, to inspire those of you who have yet to see it to give it a go! Enjoy!