The New Face of Cyberspace
In the vast majority of current imaginings of cyberspace environments, you have to strap yourself into a chair and either put on bulky headgear or stick a bundle of fibres into the back of your neck. Dennou Coil, an anime series which began airing in Japan in mid-May, takes a different view of the situation. Instead of cyberspace being a separate region that you have to enter and exit, it's overlaid on top of the real world, and instead of requiring unwieldy equipment to access it, all you need is a simple lightweight (but special) pair of glasses.
The story revolves (as many shows do) around a bunch of school kids. They are part of a detective agency run by the grandmother of Yuko Okonogi, a girl who's just transferred in to Daikoku City. The pervasive cyberspace environment means that they're able to be equipped with "megabeams" (virtual beams that shoot out from the glasses when the user makes a horizontal V sign with the fingers in front of the forehead) and "metatags" (virtual o-fuda or talismans with symbolic designs that have a variety of effects or uses when applied to a target). Things are not all fun and games though, as the children are often menaced by the security program Satchi and its Q-chan drone units when they're doing things that aren't quite within the rules of the system.
So far, only a few episodes have aired, so the main underlying plot has yet to become clear, but with a full 26 episodes allocated, Dennou Coil has plenty of time to expand into a gripping story.
At the time of writing, Dennou Coil is not yet licensed in the United States and is being fan subtitled by Ureshii Fansubs. Please support your domestic anime industry by purchasing this title when it becomes available in your territory.
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