Psycho-Pass Episode 1 [First Impression]: Crime Coefficient

“What a person thinks, or what they wish for…we live in a time where everything in a person’s mind can be made transparent by a machine.” 

Summary

In a world where minds can be analysed for potential threats of crime and mental instability, Inspector Tsunemori Akane is sent to deal with her first case, along with fellow inspector Ginoza and a group of Enforcers, latent criminals hired by the police to work for them. Akane’s case deals with an insane man who has taken a woman hostage and raped her, holing himself up in a building inhabited by groups of the homeless.

Impression

“A world where humans’ state of mind and the tendency of their personalities can be quantified. While all sorts of inclinations are recorded and policed, these measured numbers used to judge people’s souls are called Psycho-Pass.”

Oh my god, what did I just watch. My mind is a mess right now, I have so many thoughts jumbled up in my head that I have to somehow sort out, but all of them point to the conclusion that this show is absolutely mind-blowing. From the info dump, I got that the Psycho-Pass is a measure. It’s a measure where instruments detect Hues, colours that determine people’s aggression levels and emotions, which means that the police can easily mark who is a danger to society, and who isn’t. The Dominator, their gun is thus used to subdue these latent criminals, with various modes ranging from basic paralysis to outright destruction. The safety is only released once the system determines their danger, which is actually really clever. They’ve thought this through for sure.

On the surface, it’s definitely very useful, but I can already see problems with this. What about the people that barely cross the line, yet are still tracked down by the system? Someone mentioned therapy, but it’s obvious you’re going to panic if you’re targeted by this kind of police force, which would increase your Crime Coefficient even further. It’s also a system, and there can really be no good result from a world where personalities are given a number. Humans are too complex for that, and one number just won’t cut it. Other people may not like their privacy breached, and here machines can view everything about someone’s mind.

These Enforcer people are even more of a mystery. They say they hunt the prey, and are kind of like fighting fire with fire – they are latent criminals themselves, with a high Crime Coefficient enough to be targeted by the Dominator, but apparently not so that it’ll fire a lethal shot. Inspector Ginoza said that they weren’t humans, but I found that rather hard to believe – they have high Crime Coefficients, but still act and talk like normal people, to the point that you wouldn’t be able to tell they had a problem if you didn’t have your gun. Most intriguing is the guy on many promo pics, Kougami Shinya who seems to have history with a certain white-haired dude.

I said the people that barely cross the line may not deserve prosecution, but the guy in this episode certainly did. Perhaps it was the threat given to him by the sensor robot who caught him, but by the time he holed himself up with his hostage I felt that he was very clearly insane. This was where the show proved itself to be extremely dark – both in a physical and psychological sense. I’m really not interested in hearing rape sounds (I didn’t think she would actually even get raped) and really, I felt sorry for the lady. Psycho-Hazard meant that she caught a cloudy Psycho-Pass too, and on the whole she was a prime example of how rape can really mess up someone’s life. Thank god there was no issue with the gasoline catching fire. I know the crazy guy was a cunt, and I believe he ought to have died, but he didn’t deserve dying like THAT. Nobody deserves having their guts blown up from inside out, and maybe the darkest thing about the whole ordeal was Shinya’s blank face while firing his gun.

If Shinya is the main male lead, then Tsunemori Akane is our heroine. A bit dopey, but she’s so cuuuuute <3 Plus it’s even harder to take everything seriously with her Hanazawa Kana voice. Personally I don’t think Akane belongs in this show, she looks far too fragile and innocent to take up something as violent as police work in that kind of world. I didn’t know what kind of personality she’d have before the show started, but as a newbie inspector who has just witnessed a gruesome first case, it’s understandable that she’d take the moral option and believe in things like therapy or rehabilitation. The rape victim lady was probably past the point of no return by then, but at least Akane’s showing that she can act when needed by shooting down Shinya.

Apparently, moe is a forbidden word in meetings relating to this anime, and rightly so. Chief Director Motohiro joked that he “wanted to give his son and today’s youth trauma that will last their entire lives when they watched this anime”, and I can actually see that happening with Psycho-Pass. Here you have a show that is dark, twisted and full with psychological brutality, that’ll probably go into themes like human nature and morality through the eyes of Akane, the only person who’s displayed any real humanity so far. This show will break the conventions used in so many anime series, and it will be awesome because of that decision.

Possibility of Watching: Guaranteed
Possibility of Blogging: Guaranteed 

Vantage

I love cute things.

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8 Responses

  1. Eva says:

    I would’ve definitely jumped in the bandwagon to blog this, but I was so caught off guard despite being cautiously AWARE that there WAS going to be gore, I know I’ll have a very difficult time writing about it when I know I will end up covering my eyes during the dark scenes which is likely to be 85% of the episode itself. The whole guts blowing up from the inside out made my stomach flip and churn, it was too much for me.
    “Give a youth a trauma” They certainly nailed that within the first episode…..
    I’ll be watching this but with extra caution. I was able to survive Fate/Zero because of the bare min. gore scenes and good censorship, but this… May end up too much for me.

    • Vantage says:

      The gore definitely scared the crap out of me – I wasn’t expecting the rapist to explode like that at all. Now that I know what to expect though, it should be okay to stomach. Maybe there’ll be more development in the show rather than episodic hunting of various people, which means the gore shouldn’t be as apparent.

  2. KF says:

    Truth be told, what got me was that the rape actually succeed! Sure I’m fine with the rapist dead and all but to kill a rape victim? Psycho-Pass has some pretty mess up world.

    TQ

    • Vantage says:

      Yeah, they never cut the scene and make it painfully obvious that the rape was going on. I think the rape victim was just paralysed in the end, but it was clear that Shinya wouldn’t have had a problem killing her had the gun told him to.

    • Wanderer says:

      Well, I think the system judges a target as lethal from their mental state and actions. If you are deemed dangerous by the system. Remember the victim had the potential of causing a huge fire if she ignited the gasoline (although personally, being that close to the gasoline the lighter might have caused an explosion with the gas fume, but that’s being too realistic and it also depends on how the gasoline had been kept). Fire, or explosion, in an alley is never a good idea, especially when you don’t know how much flammable material is around. Also, her mental state had became so unstable she was willing to hurt others and herself. Thus, she is set to be terminated by the system. However, once she shut the lighter and dropped it, her actions will no longer be the source of a crime and her mental state had calmed down slightly, so the system dropped her aggregation level. The paralysis is originally designed to calm someone so their mental state can be re-adjusted to normal (at least that’s what I’m getting hinted by what the characters are saying). As for the kidnapper/rapist, in his case he totally went over the edge so the system deemed him as lethal.

      • Vantage says:

        The victim’s Psycho-Pass was said to have become cloudy because the man’s did, making it contagious – but it would make sense if her own mental state had deteriorated as a result of being raped, and the system saw her as a threat to society.

        It’s a dangerous world to live in, then, if you’re exposed to such an easy possibility of death. Nobody has a perfect mental state, and it’d be dangerous if small fluctuations gave you the potential of dying.

        • Wanderer says:

          Well, I don’t think those are merely ‘small’ fluctuations.

          What I am worried about is when the system can be cheated, ie. criminals who can control their mental state to the point the system will not see them as a threat.

          • Vantage says:

            I can actually see that happening as a plot point in the future, where either Shinya or Akane realizes that the most dangerous criminals out there actually appear as mentally “stable” to the system.

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