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As the title suggests, I want to start watching Ghost in the Shell. But I have seen many different ones and dont know if they're all part of the same series etc.

What are some suggestions for where to start the series?

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I would suggest:

  1. Ghost in the Shell, the original movie, and/or Ghost in the Shell 2.0, a remastered version.
  2. Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence, the sequel to the original movie.
  3. Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex and 2nd Gig. These are two television serieses that is not based in the same continuity as the movie, but contains similar themes and characters. 2nd Gig is just Season 2.
  4. Ghost in the Shell: S.A.C. Solid State Society. A television movie that follows on from the TV serieses.

As mentioned above, the latter two items are set in a different but similar universe so can be watched individually from the first two. I recommend the movies first because the original GitS movie was intended to be taken in without pre-watchings, whereas I felt the television series made some assumptions about familiarity with the source material.

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    Might be important to mention: Both series (SAC/2nd Gig) refer to incidents in the past, which are revealed throughout the series. They're not part of the movies. Also, in case you're going to watch the German version (not sure where you're from), try to get the remastered version of the first movie - same voices as the series (voice actors of Stargate SG-1) and overall better experience. – Mario Jul 17 '12 at 8:50
  • Good point - in the series, anything that happened in the past is not referring to the movie. – dlanod Jul 17 '12 at 8:53
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    Where would you put "Arise" in this sequence? Before everything else? – Jasmine Feb 4 '15 at 22:19
  • MY suggested starting place would be the manga TPB, THEN the movies/TV shows. – Omegacron Feb 5 '15 at 19:27
  • Arise is apparently in its own continuity, not a part of the movie-verse or the continuity of SAC. As to when it should be watched relative to other versions of GITS? That's up to the viewer... – Ras Morthil Jun 18 '15 at 1:36
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Hands down: Mamoru Oshii's original 1995 film, 'Ghost in the Shell'.

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    You should flesh out your answer. Why should he start there? What other Ghost in the Shell films/shows should he watch afterwards? – user1027 Jul 18 '12 at 1:15

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