- 1 Season
"Angel Beats!" is a unique anime television series that centers around concepts of life and death, and the meaning of souls moving onto the afterlife. However, the way that it approaches these themes is quite different from what one might expect. The story centers around a young man named Otonashi, who initially finds himself in a seemingly normal setting. The only problem is he finds himself with a severe case of amnesia, and he cannot seem to remember how he got to the place he is in. He quickly realizes that looks can be deceiving, and the world he has found himself in turns out to be something quite far from normal. The residents of the place he finds himself in--a high school setting--inform him that they are all dead and are in a sort of limbo. They are fighting with a small girl who appears docile and quiet, but is in fact a shape-shifting being that everyone refers to as "Angel." Much of the initial plot involves Otonashi joining the ranks of an oddball student group to combat and defend against the constant threat of Angel while he also attempts to remember his hidden past. The anime is fairly lighthearted in the beginning. Otononashi learns that the people of this place have a constant risk of disappearing. The only way to avoid disappearing, according to people he meets, is to do as many abnormal things as possible. For this reason, the students rarely attend class, and often do rebellious things such as staging attacks or heists to keep things interesting. The story slowly becomes more serious and the suspense increases as Otononashi learns that being normal isn't the only way to disappear. Some of his new friends begin disappearing despite adhering to the rule of doing crazy things, others revealing intense traumas from their past lives. Both tragic and dramatic twists await him as he unravels the mystery of his friends' disappearances as well as his own dark past.