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FRACTALE report 01

Fractale finally airs! But on the same day as the likes of Infinite Stratos and Madoka, which means it’ll be lagging behind by one episode always. Alright, pardon my 4am English and hop on with me as we journey into the world of Fractale.

It opens with an idyllic shot of a cottage on a seaside cliff.  Our main protaganist, Claine, is seen with two humanoids, whom apparently are his mother and father. There also appears to be a robot dog humping his leg.

Already, we are made aware of the fact that this is not a normal world, as it is populated by these robotic humanoids called “doppels”. It is indicated that these doppels are merely avatars of real humans, and they are altogether in another place. Claine’s father and mother even live in two different areas. Something thought-provoking was almost immediately raised, when Claine’s dad mentions that it is important for families to have their meals together. It gives the sense that the doppel system has  been in place for a significant amount of time, such that the three family members don’t seem to feel apart even thou they are all living in three separate places. What is even the point of having an avatar for a dog? Does seeing each other’s robotic avatars  and not their real faces give a sense of closeness in the first place? This is indeed a weird way of having dinner “together”.

A bit of world and how it works is introduced. Claine visits a junk market where “antiques” that look like our current real-world technology are sold. There’s even data narcotics.. a high tech version of drugs? It is explained that the Fractale system is comprised of several trillion processors networked together using 22nd century science, and that people can earn a basic income by simply uploading their life logs to high altitude hovering servers. Sounds like how the Gods people pray to live in the sky. It’s also funny how medieval the world looks like in the 22nd century. There is also a temple in the sky, represented by the bright shining dot, that people are supposed to look at (and not blink) at certain times of a day. I can’t help but think about brainwashing.

SUDDENLY! A girl appears, being chased by others. Claine goes off in hot pursuit on his bicycle, as the chasers start firing at the girl. Claine hits a bump and falls, causing his Ipod-thing to disconnect and play the song he was listening to through the speaker. The girl hears this and decides to leap off her vehicle??

Claine climbs down the cliffside, finds the girl and somehow pulls her to safety, whilst eluding her pursuers. Is it me or does the little girl remind me of a female Edward Elric? He brings the girl home, and comedic hijinks ensues when Claine gets embarrassed by Phryne stripping in front of him and then asking him to rub ointment on her back.

Later on, Phryne awakens, and turns on the projector next to the bed to get Claine’s attention. An old video of baby Claine with his real family is shown, and Phryne starts to tear because she sees how he once “truly smiled”, as compared to how he smiles now. She tries to get him to show a “true smile” again, then starts rambling on about how she wishes that his smile would last forever. She tries to give him her charm to protect his smile, saying it is the source of HER smile. However…

The three from before appear, and attempt to disguise their way in to locate Phryne. In the end, they barge through into the house, but are unable to find their target, as she seemed to have slipped out somehow.

After the three stalkers leave, Claine brings Phryne up to an abandoned ruin where radio waves do not reach. They start chatting and Phryne accidentally lets slip the phrase “people from this age”, which Claine picks upon, causing her to go silent. When Claine falls asleep after more talking, Phryne takes off her brooch and says “Let him protect you.” Claine wakes up alone, and trudges back to his house, grumbling that Phryne appeared and left as she pleased, while wondering at the same time why he was so angry. Somehow, staring at the brooch makes him realise that it is some form of data, and after typing away furiously at his laptop…

A WILD HANAZAWA KANA APPEARS.

A red-headed twin tail girl erupts from a fountain of light. The show abruptly ends here.

Fractale has me really intrigued, and not since Scrapped Princess in 2003 (wow, that was 8 years ago), has a show gripped my fantasy bone so tightly. Everything in Fractale points to a supposedly highly advanced civilization, but the world they live in appears to contradict that point. Apparently Claine will now set off on an adventure with the red hair girl to search for Phryne, and it makes me wonder whether they will progress to areas that showcase more technology. In the synopsis, the Fractale system is said to be collapsing, which is what I’m looking forward to seeing as the inhabitants of this world seem pretty reliant on it.

And with that, ends my Fractale report 01.

~Infy

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