Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex

From The ADTRWiki
Jump to: navigation, search

Ghost in the Shell:
Stand Alone Complex
Original Manga Masamune Shirow
Director/Artist Kenji Kamiyama
Format Anime (TV)
Made By Production I.G.
Episode Length 25 minutes
# of Eps/Volumes 52 (2 Seasons)


Sci-Fi, Action, Recommended Dub

Sum it up in a Sentence

Future cops track down a shifty villain adept at hacking into human brains whilst cheery spider-tanks discuss philosophy and Production I.G. loses the Major's character sheets every week.

Main Description

GITS:SAC takes place in 2030 and follows Section 9, an elite government task force for handling technological crime, where most of the members are cybernetically enhanced to some degree. While the characters also feature in the manga/movie versions of GITS, this show takes place in an alternate universe where events are completely unrelated. Many episodes are single cases, but interspersed are episodes that tie together in an overlying plot about a terrorist hacker called The Laughing Man.

If You Liked This, You Might Like...

SAC originated from:

If you liked the cyberpunk/cyborg theme with a bit of philosophy, try:

Chances are you'll like the second series too:

From the same director:

Personal Opinions


This show is a prime example of anime being mature and worthy of being seen by more people than fatties who never shower. With the insane production values, the intelligent plot, the magnificent music (Youko Kanno) and its awesome action, no one can dislike GITS:SAC.

Big Big Moon

Ghost in the Shell is what every cyberpunk fan has been waiting for. While it can be hard to stay awake during some periods of winding, technobabble-filled monologues and philosophical ramblings, the sparse yet intense action sequences and gritty city atmosphere more than make up for the boring bits. Laughing Man is a worthy villain, the Tachikoma interactions become more and more intriguing as the series goes on, and secret agent fans will love the abundance of gadgetry. Unfortunately we don't get to see Motoko kick ass in the nude this time around, but I guess you can't have your cake and eat it too.


An excellent continuation on an excellent idea, without most of the creepy Shiro Masamune stuff. It's hard to elaborate on what has already been said. Art and execution of story elements is top notch. I thorougly enjoyed the thriller elements. The world is perfectly immersive, and the adventures of the Section 9 gang are great every episode. If you liked the original movie, you need to go watch this at the earliest opportunity.


I've actually enjoyed the SAC series more than the movie universe. (Yes, there are two universes, the first, lower-tech includes Ghost in the Shell, and Ghost in The Shell 2: Innocence, and the second includes SAC: 1st Gig, SAC 2nd Gig, Solid State Society). Not really sure why I like SAC more, though. Possibly, because due to the series' greater scope, I was able to fully immerse myself in the Ghost in the Shell universe, as opposed to being a somewhat detached observer. Or maybe the less creepy character design. In any case, it's a great series.

Thirst Mutilator

Just saw all three movies, the first two summarize the 1st and 2nd seasons of the television series, and the 3rd is all new material. I'm actually really surprised that I don't hear much talk about this series in general on these forums because I found the series to be excellent. Great animation, a pretty convincing cyberpunk world and great stories, if a bit dense at times. 5/5.


Stand Alone Complex will always be one of my most favourite series, quite simply because it expands and improves upon both the movie and comic in so many ways. The characters are no longer 2-dimensional, wall-staring drawings and the techno-babble - although still there - isn't nearly as condescending. I defy you not to fall in love with it! Where Motoko was a fairly uninteresting, brooding character in the movies, in the series she is vibrant and kick-ass.

Honestly, it's perhaps not surprising that Stand Alone Complex is an amazing piece of work. The sheer amount of money that went into it is staggering. Even the dubbing - Mary Elizabeth McGlynn really makes Motoko her own - is spot-on. If you haven't seen it, go do so now!


If I had to describe this show with one word, it would be "solid". There is not a single weak link in this show. Yoko Kanno's soundtrack (for this and 2nd Gig) is perhaps one of the best in all of anime. The the 3DCG elements blend perfectly with the high quality animation (as is to be expected of IG) and the art, though not flashy or vivid in any way, is a fantastic and realistic portrayal of a world only a couple of decades ahead of our own. This show features one of the most well realized cyberpunk settings of all time, comparable even to the likes of Akira.

The story is a well written spy mystery/thriller with a side order of philosophical discussion on what it means to be human in a world where we can replace our entire body with circuitry and where AI has become complex enough to be nearly indistinguishable from human thought. If there was one flaw that could undermine my description of this show as being "solid", it is that the philosophical discussion, as fascinating as it all is, is never fully connected to the main storyline, making it feel a bit out of place. But this is by no means a negative as both the story line and the philosophy are interesting in their own rights and never interfere negatively with each other.

Quick note about the story: SAC is set in an alternate universe from the movie series (Gits, Gits 2: Innocence)

This is without a doubt one of the best shows in anime and anyone who believes otherwise is fooling themselves. There is something for everyone to like in this cyberpunk classic. The ENGLISH DUB IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.