I'll admit to you that I love to watch Adult Swim, and I'll also admit that I like certain types of anime. No, I'm not one of those nerdy card-trading Poke'mon lovers, I'm a young adult who likes to use my imagination in my down time. I like anime that's made for adults like: Big O!, Cowboy Bebop, Trigun, Outlaw Star, Tenchi and Ghost in the shell.
I was watching either watching Family Guy or Aqua Teen Hunger Force when I saw previews for this show start to air on Adult Swim, I thought thought it looked cool, it featured what looked to me like a cool futuristic take on robots and the humans that are seamlessly integrated with cybornetics to make them almost immortal, But I didn't know the half of it.
What I got was a cyber-punk version of the old black-and-white film noir mysteries. The series receives its subtitle from a theoretical mental complex attributed to the adaptation of cybernetics into the mass public. In the story, 'stand alone complex' is said to describe copies with no original and is portrayed by copycat crimes with no original criminal, or in other words, an imaginary criminal. It also refers to the structure of each episode: Each episode can be viewed independently of each other, and there is little catch-up (if at all) given in each episode to keep the viewer up to date.
Taking place in a fictional city of Japan called "Niihama-shi" (New Port City) in the year 2030, Stand Alone Complex tells the story of a special operations task-force called Public Security Section 9, or simply "Section 9". The series follows the exploits of Section 9's agents who range from ex-military to ex-police as they address each case and how it affects them on a personal level, eventually leading to the mysterious figure dubbed by the media as "The Laughing Man".
Public Security Section 9 is an elite domestic anti-crime unit tasked with the charge of preemptive prevention of technology-related acts of terrorism and crime. Their duties include response to serious cyber crimes (i.e. Cyberbrain hacking, cyber-terrorism), investigation of unlawful acts of those in public office and of high profile murder cases. From time-to-time they also serve as protection to foreign VIPs.
If you have seen the movie then you know that the TV series differs from the cinema adaptation in its focus upon issues created by the advance of technology. Instead of the intensely focused and personal examination of technology, presented is a look at society and technology as a larger whole. The series of 26 half-hour TV episodes has a larger budget of time to explore the concepts and ideas found in the original manga. In comparison to the film version, the series is considered by many to be easier to understand. Also, in comparison, the series can be found to be closer to the manga; due to the presence of some humor, the usage of the Tachikomas (Fuchikomas in the manga, and referred to simply as "tanks" in the one scene a derivant version makes an appearance in), the design of the characters, and also, the usage of the characters Paz, Bouma and Saito. Stand Alone Complex exhibits the accumulated experience and expertise of Production I.G. in their application of computer generated imagery. This is evident in their digital color grading, environmental effects, and cell-shaded computer models. Their work has been highly praised for its subtle contribution to a scene, which adds greatly to the atmosphere.
I think a lot of people will try to compare this to Cowboy Bebop as with so many other anime and mangas, but that's foolish. Stand Alone Complex is no better or worse than Cowboy Bebop, it's just a different story, different style, different sets of charactors and there places.
if you like anime or manga you'll definitely like this show. It's complex, has views on modern terrorism and how to deal with it, and not to mention the technology! Even if you don't watch anime just give a chance and take it for what it is.