Boogiepop Phantom (2000 IMDb)

Categorization

Weird supernatural horror with social commentary.

Subject

Easily compared to a puzzle. Various students in modern Japan become associated with bizarre phenomena, frequently connected to a release of tension in some form, whether it's through the consumption of delicious anxiety bugs crawling around on people, or through the extraction of an inner child who can play with the sinister Pan-like Poom-Poom.

Commentary

Lots of characters recur and a coherent but non-linear plot is eventually revealed. However, there is not a great deal to it. Most episodes are essentially stand-alone, and many of them have quite nice concepts. The idiosyncrasies are many and sometimes annoying (“ping”), but the dreamlike mood coupled with some realistic dialogue works a lot of the time.

References here: Paranoia Agent (2004).

Japanese production animation series

Simultaneous franchise element:

Boogiepop and Others (2000 IMDb)

Categorization

Live action. Relatively bright mood. The horror is almost incidental.

Subject

The events surrounding the pillar of light.

Commentary

Much more normal and comprehensible. Possibly preferable to view before the series.

Japanese production animation movie