Casshern Sins: I wanted to leave my color on my city


Knowing that some day you will die is not a prospect that one’s thoughts tend to dwell on, but in Casshern Sins, when death is everywhere and the land is ravaged with decay, that your life will some day end is impossible to ignore. It’s a feeling that I often get from this show, but far from ever seeming hopeless, each episode has an ephemeral, poetic warmth; refusing to linger in depression, it cherishes life, with color, and beauty, and sound. It is a joy to watch.
Flowing in this vein of hope, Margo’s own obscure achievements in episode 12 are typical of that irreplaceable essence of life. Just like any other robot in Casshern’s world, elegant Margo is slowly dying of the ruin, but instead of quietly accepting his fate, he keeps on going. In the throes of death, his elegiac last words reveal his heart’s truest motivation, “I wanted to leave my colour on my city”. It’s inspiring to think that he just wanted to be remembered, to leave a mark that proves that he was alive.
This was such a heartfelt parting sentiment, that honestly chimes with my heart, and exactly the kind of pathos that has me convinced that Casshern Sins is great.

10 replies on “Casshern Sins: I wanted to leave my color on my city”

I like how you can choose (well, you have chosen) Margo’s struggle to leave a mark not because it stands out as exceptionally good, but because it’s typical of Casshern Sins‘s life-in-the-face-of-decay thing.

Ok that one single screen shot (no matter how spoilerific it gets) pushed me to watch more Casshern. I’m just glad that the art isn’t letting up. Producing such great, memorable set-peices is quite the feat and isn’t something to be sneezed at. I’ll be back with thoughts tomorrow.

I really like Casshern, and I would like to love it, but the plodding pace holds me back. I’ll finish the series and I continue to watch each episode as soon as it is released, but I don’t think I can recommend it to my friends.

Great episode. The explored topic of ‘what we leave behind’ is one that often occupies my thoughts. When we inevitably die, what exactly remains? I’d agree with Dengar that the pacing is slow, but my feeling is that it fits the show’s ponderous nature in the same way similar pacing worked for Mushishi. When Casshern is on top form it makes for some powerful viewing.

Originally Posted By Wildcard[M]y feeling is that it fits the show’s ponderous nature in the same way similar pacing worked for Mushishi. When Casshern is on top form it makes for some powerful viewing.

I’ll agree with you Wildcard, but only up to a point. Mushishi had the advantage of completing a story each episode, which gave some level of immediate gratification, somewhat obviating the need for a faster pace. While I would second your point that Casshern can make for powerful viewing, I think it could be tightened up without losing much intensity.

@IKnight – That wasn’t initially my intention, but it worked out that way after a few hours of writing! 🙂 I just started out trying to understand why Margo’s death seemed particularly poignant and ended up with this post. Thinking about it, it seems rare to sit down and actually have a good idea of what I’m trying to ‘get at’, I just try to convert some raw enthusiasm for a show into something more tangible. Sometimes I wish I could be more analytical and precise, like one often is whilst posting in a forum thread, for example.
@Ivy – Casshern Sins doesn’t strike me as a show that’s easy to watch in chunks (I don’t think I’ve ever watched more than one episode in a row), so, don’t feel bad if you can’t watch it all in a matter of days. It’s a lot like Mushishi in that way, I think most us need time after every episode to ponder what it all means (and to recover our senses!)
@dengar – Can you describe what you mean by “plodding pace”, perhaps with some specific examples? I do understand what you’re getting at, but I was a bit confused when you said “Mushishi had the advantage of completing a story each episode”. Casshern does seem to complete episodic ‘character’ arcs too, but perhaps the difference is that it actually seems to have an over-arching story too (with many recurring characters) where as Mushishi was purely episodic from the outset?
@Wildcard – Exactly. Though Cassern Sins is ostensibly about death, it’s actually more of an (albeit occasionally melancholy) exploration of what it means to be alive.
I adore it for its introspective, poetic, philosophical tone. It’s just like Mushishi in that way.

I completely agree on that point, watching Casshern in batches isn’t such a great idea. Its like I’m attached then detached, attached then detached etc. Doesn’t make for quite the pleasant viewing experience to be honest. All things considered, this is a pretty great show overall. I mean I can see myself enjoying this a whole lot more on episodic viewing. Mainly because Casshern lacks a certain flow stroy-driven shows tend to up-hold, making me come back for more. I don’t consider it a fault, its just that the writers wanted to tell different faceted stories of the ruin first, and then tell the main story second (judging from episode 1-12). Aside from that everything else went right over my expectations. I especially need to the note the use of lighting, the dark grayish somber colors really help set-up the mood and the atmosphere.
I always look forward to what kind of character the next episode is going to introduce. Its always intriguing to watch how all these characters live through the ruin and how each one’s mental state has deteriorated. Magros was quite interesting as he was the only one who had a positive out-look throughout. I loved the episode that had conviction as its main theme, plus I’ve always loved the inclusion of mere humans in Casshern.
Gah this is looking more and more like a rant. Great show, love it in small doses :).

I was watching Casshern Sins in small chunks at a time (as much emo as I could take at once) and enjoying it until Ringo totally hijacked the show. Now, every episode I keep hoping someone, anyone will finally crush that annoying little girl-robot and allow the show to get a move on.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *