Director: Hiromi Mizutani
U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks, Section 23
U. S. Release Date: Oct. 21st, 2014
Format: Blu-ray / 12 Episodes + 1 OVA / 325 Minutes
Genre: Supernatural, Fantasy, Mystery
Age Rating: TV 14
Overall Personal Rating: B
Fifteen years ago on a Sunday, God abandoned the world and closed the gate to Heaven, leaving the souls of humankind trapped in limbo. With the dead unable to rest and the living unable to have children, the world is slowly coming to a halt. The only key to mankind’s salvation rests with the Gravekeepers, mysterious beings charged with the task of sending the deceased to their final resting place.
Twelve-year-old Ai, one of the last children in the world, soon finds herself shouldered with the burden of becoming her village’s newest Gravekeeper. But beneath the village’s unassuming exterior lies a dark secret that is revealed with the arrival of a gun-wielding stranger in black. With her position as a Gravekeeper now uncertain, Ai has no choice but to set out to put the living dead to rest. But in a world where no one can die, is death truly the ultimate blessing?
Conceptually Sunday Without God is an interesting proposition. To pull it off and take the subject matter seriously would be very hard to do. In the early episodes things don’t add up as well as I wanted, but by the third episode things start to come together. I have to admit there is a twist up front I didn’t expect and part of me id not sure if it makes much sense. Anyway, the series does come together and provide some semblance of living up to its title.
The real strength to the series is the animation done by Madhouse. The look is classic anime with a cute girl being the main protagonist. And the rest of the characters either being sweet and cute or strange and somewhat bizarre or older and worn out. The overall style is somewhat typical, but there are moments when the look becomes a little rustic with a truly ethereal feel that is an important tie-in to the series.
Overall Grade: B
There are such great possibilities with the subject matter and in some ways Sunday Without God delivers and in others it misses the mark. I’m not sure why the main girl had to be so cute and simplistic. I think that if the story had been re-written to make all the characters older would have made more sense and also given the plot a dramatic edge that it is missing. For the most part I found it to be relatively entertaining and when I forgot about the plot it was down right fun.
To really enjoy the series I would tell you to leave the concept behind the story at the door and just sit back and watch it without any preconceptions. That way the cuteness and melancholy that is presented early on is received with a viewpoint that doesn’t jade the rest of the series.
if, you are looking for a series that makes you think, you might want to look elsewhere. If you are looking for a series that looks great and entertains at a level that is both fun and somewhat thoughtful, then Sunday Without God is a series that you will enjoy and should check out.