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Anime as an Art Form: Baccano!

Part of a running series of examples of anime as an art form. Previous articles have established that anime has the ability to produce art; the question then becomes what sort of anime can be constituted as artistic. Baccano! is an artistic anime for a myriad of reasons. Its use of of neo-noir narrative techniques and editing helps build mystery while simultaneously creating a personality in the show that fits its title of "ruckus." Rather than creating confusion, it serves to weave its own meta-narrative of the events of a group of immortals over four major time periods. This becomes no small feat as almost two dozen characters are introduced in the show, often sharing time periods and plot-lines. Throughout all this, the editing serves to maintain control over the situation, dishing out information in small doses rather than large portions. This creates a sort of logic puzzle where the beginning and end of the narratives for the majority of the characters are known early on, and the remaining episodes are how the actions of the characters lead to their inevitable conclusions. Because of this, Baccano! succeeds in developing a narrative much to the effect of Guy Richie’s "Snatch" or Quentin Tarantino’s filmography.

  • This is a great article. Baccano definitely deserves more credit for well it weaves its narrative within the series. – CoffeeHipster 8 years ago
  • Metaphorically speaking Baccano is more of a jigsaw puzzle than a sequence me test (which I find completely annoying). You'll have a hard time understanding its true form at first but as you finish the last piece you'll see how marvelous its plot actually is and you'll have the novelty of knowing that all this time the first episode you've clearly watched was actually a major spoiler throughout the series. – RenzyBlood 8 years ago
  • Baccano is one of thsoe shows that seems to be forever on my 'to watch' list. It definitely sounds like an interesting show though. – mattdoylemedia 8 years ago

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