Over the holiday weekend I had free time so I watched Higurashi no Naku Koro ni. When the series first aired in 2006, I watched episode 1 with a friend but I didn’t continue with it. I’d seen so many images and references to it, I decided to give it another try. Well, I think ‘wtf’ sums this series up pretty well. Apparently, this anime is based on some doujin mystery games and the anime attempts to mix together various arcs which may make following the series somewhat difficult. Though not all of the arcs are directly connected, they all take place in the same location with mostly the same characters. They are related enough that each can give more insight into the characters and each individual story.
Over the course of this 26 episode series, the various stories are told through different chapters and parts which are broken into arcs. The arcs are told from various perspectives starting with question arcs which introduce the story but leave many questions unanswered. Later in the series (and in between other arcs) an answer arc for that chapter is shown which tells the same story from another perspective and answers some of the questions about the mystery. Sound confusing? It is a bit, but not enough to get completely lost. Of all the arcs, I think that the most interesting one is the Shion-Mion arc but I won’t spoil it by giving away specific details.
I will say that this series can be quite violent at times and people do die (it’s a mystery story, afer all). The final arc, Rena’s story, I thought was kinda weak and ended the series on a less appealing note. That’s not to say the series is bad, but far from perfect. In the end, if you like murder mysteries you’ll probably like this series. I liked it for the most part and will probanly watch the anime sequel, Higurashi no Naku Koroni Kai.
Final verdict: If you like murder, mystery, and lots of girls (killing people), you will probably like this series.