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Densuke, the Cute Ugly Cyberdog

Densuke, the Adorably Ugly Cyberdog Mascot of Denno Coil

About a month after most of the Spring 2007 shows began, this single little sci-fi show popped up and proved to be an utter delight. One episode in, and already I’m entranced by the world and its incredibly fun take on Cyberspace. Alot of stuff was introduced in the first episode, and not everything explained, but suffice to say, it’s caught my attention enough that I’m here to write about it.

Episode 1 Summary

Yuko, a glasses-wearing girl likely coming up on her teenage years, is moving to a new town with her younger sister Kyoko, also wearing glasses, and their dog Densuke. Of course, Densuke isn’t a REAL dog; we are quickly shown its digital nature when Kyoko tries to drop a backpack on it and it phases through. So, we’ll call it a cyberdog. Out of the window from their train, they observe a fog, which Yuko calls a fog that occurs when a section of cyberspace breaks.

In that fog, we see a cat, a girl in her mid-to-late teens, and a strange moving black mass of… something. The girl tries to get the black mass to enter the cat, but her goal is interrupted by a floating ball shooting lasers. The cat runs off, and the girl has to draw a circle with a symbol that resembles a Shinto shrine gate to avoid being found by the floaty ball of death.

In the town, Yuko and Kyoko are stopping for a bite to eat, and we’re given a few more glimpses of seemingly high technology levels, little moving digital screens and handphones created by closing the middle three fingers and extending the thumb and pinky (yes, like Inspector Gadget’s gadget phone.) Of course, when all this digital stuff, dog included, disappears when Yuko lifts up her glasses, we’re given a good idea of what we’re seeing now in this world (which I will talk about in my impressions of the episode.)

Anyway, Kyoko and Densuke end up running off and finding the now-wounded strange black mass. Long story short, Yuko gets left behind, and Kyoko and Densuke get lost as the black thing runs off.

Elsewhere, the cat from before is now being hunted by two more kids, and because of the scanlines and the fact that we can’t see it when a character has none of those “glasses” on, it’s shown to be another cyberanimal, a cybercat. And, well, as the two kids are hunting it, Yuko mistakes it for Densuke and picks it up. It is through this event that the kids are shown to be part of the Dennotanteikyou (Cyberinvestigation Agency) Coil.

Eventually, Yuko remembers that she can get directions to find her lost dog and sister, only to run into the black thing again along the way. The black thing turns vicious, and in trying to defend herself, Yuko hits a glitching wall with her map of the area and causes a whole to appear. Densuke shows up just in the nick of time… to drive the black thing into the hole. Densuke chases after, only to get the wall closed behind it, and stuck in a sub-cyberspace.

Yuko flashbacks a little, and from what I can gather, her glasses, as well as Densuke, were a present from her deceased grandfather, so naturally she’s depressed about Densuke disappearing into a wall. However, she then remembers the business card for Coil, and so gives them a call. Fumie, the girl that ended up getting the cat off of her, shows up, and starts vaguely explaining things like old version areas, and “Kyuu-chans” and Search, the spheres and a big red robot that seem to perform system administration duties in the cyberspace layer.

Fumie helps fish Densuke out of the old-version subspace in a sort-of-suspenseful scene involving Fumie’s digital servant, Oyaji, who resembles a potato with arms and legs, pulling Densuke out of the subspace as a Kyuu-chan begins formatting the area, cleaning up the old version software. The episode ends with Yuko, Fumie and the now seemingly tired and hurt Densuke being surrounded by Kyuu-chans and Search showing up from a wall.

Search, your Friendly Neighborhood Sys-Admin

“Y HALLO THAR! ^_^ NON-MICROSOFT SUPPORTED SOFTWARE DETECTED. PREPARE FOR DELETION.”

Impressions

Well, not enough has been shown about the characters yet, but the world…

*MELTS*

Maybe it’s just because I’m a Computer Science student, and therefore cool stuff like cyberspace makes my mind go “ooooo,” but I just LOVE worlds like this, and when it’s implemented as originally and awesome as Denno Coil’s cyberspace, I just start staring in awe at how cool everything is.

From what I can tell, cyberspace in the year 202X is implemented by creating a layer of cyberreality over the real world. Everything looks the same, but additional productivity features, such as map systems, hand phones, and personal computing, as well as fun things like digital pets, are added to this wide area network.

Of course, things like glitches and viruses will always exist, and so we have things like the Illegals, the black mass of stuff, playing the role of Virus with the Kyuu-chans, the small floating laser spheres, and Search, the happy red robot up above, performing administrative functions. What this creates is a simple but effective extra layer of reality that is just plain cool.

(It’s also a bit creepy thinking about what a person without those glasses would think looking around and seeing kids picking up invisible animals.)

What’s also cool is the fact that it sorta seems within the bounds of reality. Maybe it won’t come as soon as twenty years from now, but this is an implementation of cyberspace that I can actually see happening in the real world. Maybe it’s just because the regular world of Denno Coil still closely resembles our own (the world hasn’t changed significantly in appearance in my twenty-two years of living, we won’t have nonsense like flying cars in twenty more years) but this “extra layer” model of cyberspace just seems really plausable.

There’s a few things we’ve yet to really learn about this cyberspace, like what the Cyberinvestigation Agency actually does, why the Kyuu-chans and Search seem to dislike pets, and the how behind all the coolness, but all I can say after one episode of Denno Coil is…

ZOMG THIS IS AWESOME!!!!