Rumors fly around the schools that shadows have been seen tearing away from bodies, and that is not even the strangest thing going on in a nameless boy’s life. It was weird enough that he and Tamaki Maiko, a childhood friend who clearly wants to be more than friends, were coming home from karaoke and saw a shadow of a warrior girl running down an alley. It was downright puzzling when no one else even remembers going to karaoke next day. One morning while waiting for the train, the nameless boy sees this warrior girl once more, and everyone else at the station vanishes into thin air. He is obviously not in his own world anymore, but it is too late to turn back now.
summary by Keitaro
Highs: Memorable story; a rewarding brain teaser
Lows: Unanswerable questions; out of place fan service
There are two ways to enjoy Interlude. One may, as many would do, watch the show from start to finish just like any other, taking in the decent action scenes and great music but coming away baffled and shrugging it off as simply being too confusing. After all, in a show that takes place in an unknown number of parallel worlds, contains several poetic soliloquies, stars a character who is never even given a name and others who may or may not even exist in the first place and, last but not least, has a scrambled sequence of events, I sincerely doubt that anyone could grasp the story and symbolism after only one viewing. The other option is to take the time to tear it apart word for word and reconstruct it into something somewhat coherent. Those who take this course will be rewarded with one of the most memorable and thought-provoking anime in memory.
Shame on me for initially tagging Interlude as a rip off of The Matrix movies. Aside from one similar plot element, the two have much less in common than it would appear. In terms of depth of story, this anime is miles ahead, though I wish I could say the same about the special effects. The animation itself is perfectly fine, albeit not all one should expect from an OVA. But stylistically, this show doesn’t do itself justice. The character designs are lackluster, and the seiyuu do a forgettable job. Also a bit disappointing are the action scenes, even if action is not the primary focus in this show.
Worse than that, though, are the grossly out of place fan service and “comedy” scenes. I am one to appreciate skin here and there, but in no way whatsoever does it contribute to the story in Interlude, and occasionally it even ruins the atmosphere. On the other hand, aside from one particularly grating song in the closing scene, the soundtrack goes very well with the mood. It is an incredible piece of work that helps to set a spine-chilling ambiance throughout.
Needless to say, it takes a specific type of fan to appreciate this OVA for all it is worth, but those who take pleasure in analyzing shows to understand the full meaning, Interlude may prove surprisingly deep.
Interlude can be downloaded legally in the United States HERE.