Close the World. Open the nExt.
If you are asked, “What was the best anime show you have ever watched,” what will you answer? For me, it is Serial Experiments Lain. A challenging and mind-boggling piece of art from the 90s which inspired many and still has a cult following to this day.
Serial Experiments Lain (1998) was not just an entertainment (if you can call mind-boggling an entertainment) but a piece of art deserving awards and memorials. With only 13 episodes, this TV series opens your mind to a lot of possibilities. Questioning your existence or the world itself.
It was advanced for its time. The author was able to meld together different scientific facts and technological marvels to create a thought-provoking story out of it. It touched on the Schumann resonance, IPv6, and “reality is but a simulation”. Have you ever heard of IPv6 and “reality is a simulation” in 1998? If you are a techie, sure; and if you like philosophy, possible. But the general public in 1998?
Even more, humans entering the Internet or Cyberspace (as was popularly called back then), was in the story years before Transcendence (2014).
There were also religious undertones in this series that few caught. One was the relationship between IPv6 and Protocol 7 (a.k.a. IPv7). The number six (6) is commonly attributed as the number of man. Imperfect beings that we are. While the number seven (7) is perfectness or godhood if you will. In Serial Experiments Lain, it was through Protocol 7 that man can get access to “heaven” through the use of drugs and technology connected to “The Wired” (the next generation of Internet). But once one completely “uploads” oneself to The Wired, we leave our imperfect (number 6) body behind and enters The Wired and become perfect, gods. Protocol 7 acts as the bridge between this physical realm and the digital realm or the gaia network, the global conciousness.
There is still a cult following around Serial Experiments Lain. It even entered philosophical circles too. Some consider there is a possibility of it becoming a reality, maybe not through the Schumann Resonance and Protocol 7 (because it is as impossible as curving the trajectory bullets shown in the film Wanted) but through other means.
I have yet to find a series of the same level or greater than Serial Experiments Lain.
Here are some quotes from Serial Experiments Lain
The wired might actually be thought of as a highly advanced upper layer of the real world. In other words, physical reality is nothing but an illusion, a hologram of the information that flows to us through the wired.
This is because the body, physical motion, the activity of the human brain is merely a physical phenomenon, simply caused by synapses delivering electrical impulses.
The physical body exists at a less evolved plane only to verify one’s existence in the universe.
No matter where you go, everyone’s connected.
People only have substance within the memories of other people.
Am I here, or am I there? I don’t know. Over there, I’m everywhere. I know that. But here is connected to over there. Is that right? But then, where is the real me after all is said and done. Oh! There is no real me. I guess that’s it. I only exist inside those people aware of my existence. But what about this me that I can hear talking right here and now? It’s me, isn’t it?
This me that’s talking. Who is it? Who’s me?
When it’s all said and done, the Wired is just a medium of communication and the transfer of information. You mustn’t confuse it with the real world.
If you’re not remembered, then you never existed.
History is not merely a linear collection of points that we pass through on a timeline. They are connected by a line. No, perhaps it is more accurate to say that they are made to connect.
The truth has power because it’s the truth. And because it is the truth, that makes it just. It’s persuasive.
Close the World. Open the nExt.
Is a self-confessed bibliophile and technophile other than being an early adopter, an avid gamer, a geek, nerd, role-player, anime otaku, and trekker.
His first online project was in 1998 when he launched the unofficial website for Ansalon MUD (a text-based, telnet online game) and his own community forums Laibcoms.Community. By 2003 he created his work blog GM-Yukino which grew into gameshogun™, Snoworld™, and techmagus™ over the years.
Yuki’s latest project is Verses.Space™, a Free Culture / Creative Commons, collaborative, and shared-world, worldbuilding and writing project.
Snoworld’s Best Anime: Serial Experiments Lain by Yuki (雪亮) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at Legal Notice.