Procrastinating a good thing: Why I can’t finish .hack//Sign

This is not a review but rather a lament. I have been watching .hack//Sign recently and like it well enough. But for some reason, I just can’t bring myself to finish it. (I’ll use the shorthand “hack/sign” because I don’t want to deal with Microsoft Word’s blue-line accusation: “Change punctuation placement”)

hack/sign is one of the most interesting anime I have watched this year. Other writers have called it boring for the slow, conversation driven plot, but for me it finally approximates the “MMO myth” I have sought and failed to find in this season’s video game isekai (I challenge you: what is more essential to the MMO experience than AFKing in a transport hub while chatting with friends?). Sure, the art is ugly, but given the age of the show (2002), whatever, I don’t care. I would even argue that the weirdly static movements give the show a welcome bit of that old-school RuneScape charm (Subaru holds her axe like a dragon battleaxe!). And of course, it would be criminal to not mention the gorgeous if slightly overbearing soundtrack by Yuki Kajiura of Puella Magi Madoka Magica fame. The music alone could almost carry the whole show. It’s fantastic.

I give that short review not to convince anyone else to watch, but to demonstrate that there isn’t much reason for me not to. Though I have only watched half of it, I am enjoying it very much (For the first time ever, a recap episode didn’t feel like a bucket of cold water to the face!). Of all the media I am consuming at the moment, hack/sign holds my attention the best if not for one little problem: I can’t find the motivation to keep watching.

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