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Elfen Lied

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No Way Back
Nana almost falls into the ocean, but Kurama arrives to save her. Since Nana damaged Mariko's vectors, she is unable to use them and is taken to a place to be watched over.

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Mariko enjoys playing around with Nana since she is only allowed to kill her. Kohta arrives at the scene and Nana saves him by falling into the ocean.

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#35 has been released and Saitoh, who has been taking care of #35 tries to talk to her and #35 kills her. However, Shirakawa tells #35 (Mariko) that she will listen or she will explode the bomb implanted in her body.

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Kurama's past is explained in this episode. He was a good friend of Professor Kazukawa, who invited Kurama to work with him and his father on the diclonius project after leaving university.

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Lucy's past links with Kohta are uncovered - after her dog was killed, she began to show contempt for humans, until Kohta briefly befriended her. Kohta plays the series' opening theme "Lilium" in a music box which he bought in Kamakura.

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As a result of living her entire life inside the facility, Nana is found to be naive and sensitive about the events surrounding her. Mayu discovers the real Lucy behind Nyu as Nana tells her of their diclonius powers.

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Nana is released with brand-new artificial limbs and enough money to last her for a while on her own. Kurama, his second-in-command Shirakawa, and his assistant are all reprimanded by Kakuzawa for letting her escape and letting Kohta enter the facility to find Lucy.

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Inner Feelings
Bando escapes from the hospital, still trying to find Lucy to satisfy his grudge against her. Professor Kakuzawa Yu's decapitated body is found by his assistant and Kouta.

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Mayu's past and why she ran away from home are revealed. Mayu's mother remarried, and her new stepfather repeatedly molested her.

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Nana, using the telepathic powers of diclonii to find Lucy, fights her in a local cemetery, and Mayu encounters them in the middle of the battle. Before long, Nana has all her limbs ripped off, nearly dead.

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Im Innersten: Within Heart
Nana, a Diclonius, has accepted the request to find Lucy.Nyu hits her head and becomes Lucy, but after having a flashback of Kohta, leaves.

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Cleaning Up
Kouta and Yuka search for Nyuu after see runs away. Meanwhile the assassins have found Lucy.

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Chance Meeting
Lucy escapes from the lab. Kouta and Yuka find her, name her Nyuu (she can't say anything besides "mew"), and invite her to live with them.

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Elfen Lied is a chilling, yet deeply enthralling Japanese anime series that expertly blends elements of psychological horror, science fiction and gut-wrenching drama into a narrative that is both terrifyingly grim, and ultimately poignant. First premiered on AT-X in 2004, the series plunges viewers into a world where the line between humans and mutated beings, humorously referred to as "Diclonius," is blurring at a disconcerting pace.

The story kicks-off with the escape of Lucy, a significant Diclonius with potent, invisible arms called "vectors." Lucy's escape, however, isn't without havoc, as she leaves a trail of blood and destruction. But, while going on a violent spree, Lucy is injured, leading her to switch to a dual personality, Nyu, who is innocent and childlike, distinctly opposing her violent persona.

Elfen Lied predominantly spins off into two narrative arcs. One focuses on Lucy's recovery, aided by two unsuspecting yet kind-hearted individuals, Kouta and Yuka, after she washed up on a beach near their home. They remain oblivious to her Diclonius nature, thus adding an undercurrent of tense uncertainty to their budding relationships.

The second serves as a nerve-wracking descent into the clandestine research facilities where these Diclonius are studied and brutally experimented upon. Here, viewers witness how these beings are born with a threat to humans, therefore labeled as a distinct species. As a corollary, the series explores the ruthless methods employed by the researchers to prevent the world from getting overrun by Diclonius.

With this dichotomy in place, Elfen Lied drives the narrative tension throughout its 13-episodes run, offering an irresistible blend of shuddery action sequences and moving character arcs.

The series continues with an exploration of trauma, the brutality of existence, and, in turn, the transformation of vulnerable individuals into violent entities. The relentless violence it portrays can be off-putting for some, yet it fortifies the overarching themes with a shocking efficacy that's hard to shake off. The violence is no means an end but serves to underscore how trauma and cruelty can warp and fracture even the most tender-hearted of beings, encapsulated in Lucy's character.

Elfen Lied also probes the idea of 'Other' and dystopia in societies that refuse to accept anything foreign or different from norms, hence providing insightful commentary on discrimination and prejudice. This constant fear of 'otherness' and the ensuing reactions form the crux of the series, interwoven with the pulpy narrative of survival, betrayal, and undying hope.

Character development is another compelling aspect of Elfen Lied. As the series progresses, the viewers are gradually introduced to the tragic backstory of the characters, particularly Lucy's. The series takes its time to peel away the layers in the character's persona, delving into the complexities of their past, their motivations, aspirations, and deepest vulnerabilities. From unraveling Lucy's past to showcasing the emotional evolution of Kouta and Yuka, the series builds an environment that fosters insightful growth amongst its key players, making them relatable to the viewers.

Complementing its emotive storytelling and character development is the series' art and sound design, which acts as an effective mood setter. The creators have made a conscious effort to bring the grim and blighted universe of Elfen Lied to life. This visual and auditory experience provides a brilliant platform for the series' stark, often sobering narrative tones.

In conclusion, Elfen Lied is more than just a horror-science fiction series. While it may seem disheartening to the faint-hearted, beneath its grotesque exterior lies a robust narrative engine fueled by a profound understanding of human nature, societal norms, and unconditional hope amidst desolation. It's a series that bravely delves into the depths of human depravity, prejudice, and cruelty while providing glimmers of hope and tenderness, ultimately posing a simple, yet profound question - what does it truly mean to be human?

This extraordinary blend of genres, layered narratives, and well-rounded characters make Elfen Lied a must-watch for anime enthusiasts who appreciate bold storytelling.

Elfen Lied is a series categorized as a ended . Spanning 2 seasons with a total of 15 episodes, the show debuted on 2004. The series has earned a moderate reviews from both critics and viewers. The IMDb score stands at 7.9.

How to Watch Elfen Lied

How can I watch Elfen Lied online? Elfen Lied is available on AT-X with seasons and full episodes. You can also watch Elfen Lied on demand at Amazon Prime, Amazon online.

Anime Drama
Sanae Kobayashi, Chihiro Suzuki, Mamiko Noto
Elfen Lied is available on .