This one is leaving me on the fence. On the one hand the post apocalyptic cyberpunk setting and its atmosphere leave nothing to be desired. Each character carries some depth to it that is well explored with overally good writing. Mystery elements that hint at the supernatural keep the show interesting and outline a world building that goes beyond the borders of your typical futuristic city of law and order. And within all of that Ergo Proxy manages to sneak in hints of a coming of age story that's supported by the world building itself as symbolism. There are glimpses of masterful writing in this anime. The animation quality doesn't stand out much but the art style suits the show very well. The soundtrack however accompanies the dystopian atmosphere shown perfectly.
Still, it's a diamond in the rough at best. The writing feels really hamfisted at times, you can tell whoever was responsible for the script liked the sound of certain foreign words a bit too much. Eventually the show goes on to tell too much. Many characters end up feeling very one faced with the same aspect of them being in the spotlight of writing over and over. Too much exposition reveals all of the secrets behind Romdeau and the desolate world surrounding it, leaving no questions unanswered and leading to a rather bland soft sci-fi ending that could have left a much stronger impression without all the explanations. Vincent's character would have benefited just as much from less information and the story focused too much on him finding a concrete answer to his origins which should have been kept shrouded in mystery.
All in all the final episodes felt disappointingly weak, but Ergo Proxy employs superb world building, delivers some witty writing you wouldn't have expected and makes good use of symbolism. Most important it has a couple of powerful moments I didn't expect it to have. There's a masterpiece hidden in here. Unfortunately it didn't quite make it out.
(Originally posted on mal on October 26th 2021: https://myanimelist.net/reviews.php?id=422201)