The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexander Dumas was recently released via an anime in japan with The title being Gankutsou. The anime took the classic book and gave it an intersteller twist. It still bore the vestiges of a period piece, complete with cravats, a waltz through high society and nobility... however Studio Gonzo also decided to add mecha, inter-planetary travel and aliens to give the classic a refreshing shine.
The Count of Monte Cristo is a story of love, passion and revenge. It explores the depths of the human heart, revealing the very lowest to which it can sink as well as the highest to which it can attain. It is a story of quiet madness and subtle subterfuge. A story in which the underlying theme is a simple one. Cause and Effect
At the centerpiece of the story is the Count himself. Edmond Dantes. A man wrongfully accused of a crime that he did not commit by people that he trusted. Cast into the prison in the depths of the star system, The Chateau d'lf, he was placed there to die in memories of what he had been. That is when he was offered freedom and a chance to pay back those who had stolen from him, even if that came at the price was his own soul.
The anime, Gankutsou launches right in to the Count, saving his persona as Edmond Dantes to be revealed later. However because this FST is about him and not about the series as a whole, we will start with him at the very beginning and we will trace his evolution step by step through music. I did not spend too much time on the introduction because I trust that the selections will explain the man far better then I ever could in this introduction.
"Pure and Simple" by The Lightning Seeds. | Download | Lyrics |
//look at me with starry eyes.. / push me up to starry skies / there's stardust in my head / pure and simple everytime//
-Edmond Dantes is a young man with the whole world in front of him. A woman that he plans to marry, the commandering of The Pharon and the future ahead glimmering at him. In the ideals of youth, he is unstoppable with nothing holding him back.
"Tourniquet" by Evanescence. | Download | Lyrics |
//Do you remember me? / Lost for so long / Will you be on the other side / Or will you forget me?//
-It all goes wrong when Edmond Dantes is implicated and he cries out for a god that he is not sure even exists. He drowns in the Chateau D'lf, pleading for someone to save him while the darkness swallows him whole, eradicating the light that he had previously to radiated. And sinking into an imagined oblivion where the world goes by as he is led to rot in a hell of his own creating.
"Savior" by VNV Nation. | Download | Lyrics |
//You seek a God to stand above you / Wrapping healing arms around you / You'll find another God of pain / A God of suffering and tears//
-Finally a savior -does- come, but the most unlikely of them. A spirit known as Gankutsou who has been rotting in the Chateau for a very long time, he sees Edmond Dante's pain and grief and he offers the man balm and perhaps the most important ingredient. A means to an end.
"Once in a Lifetime" by Wolfsheim. | Download | Lyrics |
//calm down my heart... don't beat so fast... / Don't be afraid just once in a lifetime / No rain can wash away my tears / no wind can soothe my pain//
-Really Edmond Dantes, now the Count of Monte Cristo, has nothing to lose. Nothing to gain, but then he had lost it all long since. This second chance he steels himself for, a revenge that will be grand and fitting. Immaculately he plots it out like a play set up just for fate. THis really seems like it is a once in a lifetime chance, and he promises himself that he will enjoy the downfall of those who had framed him.
"Under the Milky Way" by The Church. | Download | Lyrics |
//Wish I knew what you were looking for.../ Might have known what you would find//
-The Count makes his first appearance as a man of mystery, a drifter and a wanderer. Much like his book counterpart, he is learned and the ideal rennissance man.. one who inspires more questions then he answers.
"On a High" by Duncan Sheik. | Download | Lyrics |
//It's a lie, It's a lie don't you believe it / 'Cause I've tried and I've tried, and I can't really see it / Yeah, I'm trapped inside my conspiracy of happiness//
-He has quite a few people fooled, this amiable and personable man.. gracious to a fault and content with his life. Well he makes oh so many people dance to his whims and with a flick of his wrist, the entire high society of Paris dances for him. Service with that near perpetual smile.
"To Good Friends" from Time and Space: A Xeno/Chrono Remix Compilation. | Download |
-He manages to worm his way into the friendship and esteem of the children of those who had wronged him. (for the most part). Toasting their successes and sympathizing with them, finding that kindness was the greatest wedge into getting right where he wanted to be.
"Let Me Be Your Armor" by Assemblage 23. | Download | Lyrics |
//let me take the blows that were meant for you / Let me help you with the trials you're going through / Let me keep you safe from the world outside / Let me wipe away the tears that fill your eyes//
-The key instrument into getting to the man who stole his woman is through his son, Viscout Albert de Morcef. And he uses that card to the fullest. And through his ties to the boy he forges the strongest bond, knowing that his best friend turned betrayer, Ferdinand, would fall through his son. Promising Albert everything, eternal friendship and trust only to have ulterior motives.
"The Seventh Stranger" by Duran Duran. | Download | Lyrics |
//But I still can feel those splinters of ice / As I look through the eyes of a stranger //
-Finally the Count makes no pretense toward civility as plans set in motion and he becomes even more and more consumed with his bond-mate, Gankutsou. He ceases to curry favor, rather setting about his plans even more firmly. For so long he had tugged at the strings from behind the curtain, now he was ready to reveal himself as being the grande judge and juror.
"Faces" by Orgy. | Download | Lyrics |
//These are the faces (faces of time) / That's what you're living through / This is all about you//
-There is no winner in his revenge, everyone loses, including himself. He destroys those who came after him, barely realizing now that he was destroying himself in the process. Piece by piece, bit by bit.
"Karma Slave" by Splashdown. | Download | Lyrics |
//I'm a slave of Karma / Spin the Wheel and I'm a King reborn / I'm a slave to Karma / I'm coming back, yeah, I'll be coming back / But for the last time.//
-Edmond meets his fate but not as one would expect, and he goes down to be submitted back to the sea of Karma that he had stirred up himself. A slave to Karma the entire time, and eventually put down by it himself. What goes around comes around. Was the price to much? Who knows.
"The Book of my Life" by Sting. | Download | Lyrics |
//Though the pages are numbered / I can't see where they lead / For the end is a mystery no-one can read / In the book of my life//
-Was it worth it? Only Edmond Dantes will know the answer to that.
Pairings (Main - Fan Favorites):
"Astronaut" by Duran Duran (Count x Albert). | Download | Lyrics |
//Wasted, there's nothing gonna ace this / And were gonna go to space hit, / 'Cause I'm leaving with an astronaut!//
-In the Gankutsou fandom, perhaps the most popular pairing, this song was chosen because of the space theme as well as the exhilaration like a drug that the song tells of. (For those of you who've seen the series, remember the Hookah..)
"Fortress Around Your Heart" by Sting (Edmond x Mercedes). | Download | Lyrics |
//Then I went off to fight some battle / That I'd invented inside my head / Away so long for years and years / You probably thought or even wished that I was dead//
-Edmond's first love, Mercedes. Once he was holed up in the Chateau D'lf, she pined and then moved on to marry Edmond's 'best friend', Ferdinand Montego. Canon as well as a bit heart wrenching.
"I See Right Through You" by DJ Encore feat Engelina (Count x Haydee). | Download | Lyrics |
//I see right through to you, / It’s not like I don’t feel your mood / What you have for me is different than the rest that moves / I’ll be positve, I know that I could be there too//
-Haydee is the Count's protege and all apart of his plot to cause ruinition on the House of Morcef (Montego). It is very evident that she is in love with the Count, despite his need for revenge and it is a touching pairing nonetheless. She tries so desperately to understand his motives as well as ease his tortured mind.
"Always a Woman" by Billy Joel (Count x Andrea). | Download | Lyrics |
//Ohhh... she takes care of herself / She can wait if she wants, she's ahead of her time / Ohhh... and she never gives out
And she never gives in, she just changes her mind//
-Okay so I was reaching for this pairing, but well in one of the episode Andrea nearly bitchsmacks Albert saying that 'he' was the Count's favorite. And being of course that Andrea is a diva anyways, when I heard this song, I just had to put it on the FST. The image of the Count singing this to Andrea really tickled me pink.
"Pastel Pure" by Ali Project. (Gokigenyo). | Download |
-No one will get this since it's something stemming betwixt uzukisaru and I. It is when the Count smiles and says "Gokigenyo" which is the acceptable greeting for lesbian schoolgirls everywhere a'la Maria-sama ga Miteru. You really have to see Maria-sama ga Miteru in order to really get it. This song is the intro to the series, vocalized for the second season.
"Blue" by A Perfect Circle. | Download | Lyrics |
//Call it aftermath, she's turning blue / While I just sit and stare at you//
-Gankutsou's influence on Edmond Dantes turns him into the Count, a creature with blue skin and neigh unrecognizable. I do not know why I included it on this FST, while it just seemed like a very fun song to include. So forgive the slightly emo song.
-Thanks goes out to uzukisaru and fennin who got me hooked on this awesome series. They are my girls.. and I dedicate this FST to them. ^_~