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Angel Beats! [TV]

Angel Beats!
Plot Summary

Angel Beats! takes place in an afterlife high school, which acts as limbo for teenagers who have died and experienced traumas or hardships during their lifetime. Before being able to move on to reincarnation, those who find themselves in this afterlife high school must first come to terms with whatever trouble they have brought with them from the time they were still alive. Despite being already dead, the students retain the ability to feel physical sensations such as pain, hunger, and even experience death, only waking up later to have recovered from whatever injury.

The story follows Otanashi who suddenly wakes up in this afterlife school with no other memory except for his name. She meets Yuri who invites him to the SSS (Shinda Sekai Sensen, Afterlife Battlefront), an organization whose goal is to fight against God himself. The SSS also fights a mysterious girl named Angel, who appears to be the guardian of the afterlife high school, and possesses several supernatural abilities. Strangely enough, Otonashi feels drawn to the mysterious Angel, and slowly regains his memory and understand who she really is.

About Angel Beats

Angel Beats! is an action, comedy-drama, supernatural anime series originally written by Jun Maeda. Produced by P.A. Works and Aniplex, the series aired a total of 13 episodes (plus 2 OVAs), between April 3 and June 26, 2010. Receiving many positive reviews by critics, Angel Beats! was acknowledged during the 14th Japan Media Arts Festival in 2010.

Angel Beats Characters

Yuzuru Otonashi
Otonashi is the main protagonist of the series. Although waking up with no memories of his past, he remembers them later on with the help of Naoi. He had a younger sister who he lost to cancer, which became his impetus to study and become a doctor. He meets an accident during his way to the college, and spent his last moments alive helping the trapped survivors until rescue arrived. Before dying, he made himself an organ donor.

Yuri Nakamura
After failing to protect her siblings from being murdered by burglars, Yuri blamed God for their terrible fate and founded SSS. She is an excellent leader even though she denies the fact, often making smart and successful operations against Angel. She is also very skilled in combat, both with guns and hand-to-hand combat.

Kanade Tachibana
Kanade Tachibana, initially known as Angel, is the acting student’s council president tasked to maintain peace and order in the afterlife high school. Despite her calm and harmless appearance, Angel is actually destructive and is very powerful. She possesses supernatural skills, made possible with the help of an “Angel Program”.

Episode Summaries

Episode 1: Departure
Yuzuru Otonashi wakes up in the afterlife with no memories except for his name. He then meets Yuri, who is currently aiming a sniper rifle at a seemingly innocent girl across the field. Yuri explains the situation and invites Otonashi to join the SSS, but he remained confused and went to talk to the girl known as Angel. Angel tells Otonashi that everyone is dead, but he still refuses to believe and asks for proof instead. Angel immediately stabs Otonashi’s heart with a blade attached from her arm. Otonashi wakes up in the school infirmary, and somewhat accepts reality. He dies multiple times from the traps set up by SSS intended for Angel, and finally finds himself in the main SSS room, where he meets the core members of the organization. Yuri apparently leads SSS, and explains the mission of the organization. Later that day, they execute their very first operation with Otonashi.

Episode 2: Guild
Yuri and the SSS make their way to the Guild, an underground facility which produces the weapons they use against Angel. Their advance towards the Guild is greatly delayed, due to the numerous booby traps set up for protection. Only Yuri and Otonashi survived and make it to the Guild’s entrance, but Angel is still on their tail. Yuri reveals to Otonashi that she and her siblings died at the hand of thieves, and that this experience is what drives her to fight Angel and God. Shortly after meeting the Guild members, Angel finally catches up and is near the main entrance. The Guild leader opts to razing the facility, while Yuri and Otonashi directly fight Angel in order to buy time for the Guild’s escape.

Episode 3: My Song
Masami Iwasawa, member of the diversion team Girl’s Dead Monster, presents her new ballad to Yuri, who questioned its usefulness in their operations. A new member of the SSS appears in the name of Takeyama, who happens to be a computer hacker. Yuri executes another operation which aims to infiltrate Angel’s room, starting with the Girl’s Dead Monster diversion. Masami Iwasawa’s backstory is then revealed to Otonashi. The band members are taken down by the teachers, but Masami Iwasawa breaks free and performs the ballad she introduced to Yuri earlier. After performing the song, Iwasawa moves on to the afterlife. Meanwhile, Angel’s room is successfully infiltrated, and they discover that she makes her own weapons with the aid of a computer program.

Episode 4: Day Game
Hideki Hinata’s backstory is revealed, and almost passed on to the afterlife if not for Yui’s intervention.

Episode 5: Favorite Flavor
Yuri executes a new operation, which aims to sabotage Angel’s grade, ultimately removing her position as council president. They successfully switch Angel’s exam paper with fake ones, causing her to fail, and passing her position unto Ayato Naoi. Later that day, they discover that Angel is no longer hostile to SSS, and acts more like the common students. However, Naoi arrives and punishes the SSS for their actions.

Episode 6: Family Affair
The conflict between SSS and Naoi continues. Later after almost entirely wiping out the SSS, Naoi reveals his dark past to Otonashi who comforts him, eventually realizing his own mistakes and joins the SSS.

Episode 7: Alive
Naoi uses his hypnotic abilities on Otonashi to help him remember his past life. Otonashi’s backstory is then revealed. Later that day, a new threat appears in the form of Angel’s clone.

Episode 8: Dancer in the Dark
The SSS attend regular class in order to protect themselves from the aggressive Angel clone. Later, the original Angel is kidnapped, and was taken to the abandoned Guild underground. The SSS execute a rescue operation, only to find numerous Angel clones in their way. Yuri and Otonashi manage to survive and reach the original Angel, and finally harmonizing her with her clones.

Episode 9: In Your Memory
The death of Otonashi was revealed, after dreaming of his past life. Angel wakes him up, and tells her that he wishes to help everyone move on to the afterlife, which was Kanade’s original intention all along.

Episode 10: Goodbye Days
Otonashi and Angel execute their plan on helping the other students move on to the afterlife starting with Yui. Yui’s backstory is revealed, showing that her legs were paralyzed back when she was alive, restricting her from experiencing a fulfilled life. Her wish involved executing a German Suplex, scoring a soccer goal against five players, and finally, scoring a homerun in baseball. Otonashi helps her fulfill the first two wishes, but she decides to change her final request into experiencing marriage.Hinata volunteers to marry her, and Yui finally disappears and moves on into the afterlife. Later, a new threat has immerged, in the form of a shadow.

Episode 11: Change the World
The battle between the horde of shadows and the SSS continues.

Episode 12: Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door
Yuri traces the source of the shadow menace and finds the Angel software has gone rogue.

Episode 13: Graduation
A few days after the shadows incident, most of the students had already moved on to the afterlife, and only four remain: Otonashi, Yuri, Naoi, Hinata, and Angel. As per Angel’s suggestion, they held a graduation ceremony. It was a complete ceremony involving an anthem, diplomas, and speech. Yuri makes her peace with Angel, and expresses the regret that she failed to befriend her earlier. Yuri then moves on, and was followed by Naoi and Hinata shortly after. Alone together, Otonashi suggests his idea to Angel that they should stay there in the afterlife, waiting to help any new students that might appear. He also confesses to Angel that he had fallen in love with her, but Angel reveals that he was the owner of the heart she received from a heart transplant, and only wished to thank him before finally moving on. Otonashi embraces Angel while crying, begging her to stay there with him. After finally being able to thank her savior, Angel disappears, leaving a heartbroken Otonashi behind. The series ends in a scene where a girl that looked like Angel was humming Iwasawa’s ballad, which Otonashi somewhat recognizes. He reaches out his hand to the girl infront of him, and the screen fades to white before he could make contact.

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