27 CommentsFractale / By Scamp /

Fractale episode 2

If you ever want your mind scrubbed, just stare at the Fractale opening for a bit and every thought you ever had will fly away in the sight of the pretty colours. In a season of fantastic background music yet surprisingly disappointing opening songs (even Shaft produced a lacklustre one by their own standards for Madoka Magica), Fractale stands far and away ahead of the rest, both in song and visuals. I wish I could forget the nonsense that’s surrounded Fractale this week anyway.

First up, there’s Yamakan saying a bunch of stupid stuff again and generally being an idiot. There was a glorious moment on twitter that summed up the situation when someone accidentally wrote Yamakan instead of Shinbo when talking about Madoka Magica. Yamakan has become a presence bigger than the anime he’s directing this season, while Shinbo remains about as silent as ever. Yamakan could really do with taking a note of of Shinbo’s book and let his own show do the fucking talking. Shinbo’s reputation comes from the shows he directs while he himself says rather little. Yet after all these shows he’s made, people would actually listen to Shinbo if he came out discussing something. Meanwhile Yamakan has made fuck all (Kannagi is a cool show and all, but hardly an anime that makes a name) and then proceeds to blather on before his show even had an episode out yet.

The second piece of news surrounding Fractale is that Funimation had their rights to stream taken off them. While it never had an effect on me in any case because Funimation think I live in the wrong country, I smelled something fishy about this whole situation right from the off. I know the Japanese have proven to be pretty thick when it comes to rights for anime outside Japan, but asking Funimation to get rid of all illegal internet versions of it borders on the mentally challenged. The fact that the streaming rights for Fractale are still available in France give my suspicions a bit more ground, especially when backed by that rather unusual move at the start of the season for Wandering Son to be given to Crunchyroll instead of Funimation.

Someone wants out of the Noitamina/Funimation deal, and I’m pretty sure it’s the Japanese. Give Funimation a patently unachievable goal then yank the rights when they don’t achieve that goal. Why they’re looking to back out I do not know and speculation further is not a good idea seeing as this original conspiracy theory is not exactly proven to be true yet. But something is definitely up here. Ultimately it has little effect on me. On the bad side, the opening now has bloody karaoke, damaging the pretty spirally fractals that spill over the screen. On the good side, the first subs that appear will no longer be those stupid 320p versions Funimation had.

All this talk and I haven’t even talked about the episode itself yet. I guess the Yamakan statements were ringing in the back of my head while watching this because I became hyper sensitive throughout. Considering that twat has been ringing the “moe is the cancer that is killing the industy” bell, why does he then produce the first moe show for Noitamina? Nessa squawks and hops about in the typical genki girl archetype, the episode losing the ‘beginning of an adventure’ feel the first episode had. So I’m going to have to hold off saying anything more in this post. I swear from now on I’ll ignore everything Yamakan says. See, you twat? I want to actually enjoy your anime. Stop deflecting attention away from it.

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26 Comments

  1. Posted January 21, 2011 at 4:49 pm | Permalink

    I dropped this.
    I will only watch it again if you say this is amazing in a few episodes or so.
    I’m currently watching Madoka Magica, Level E, Hourou Musuko, Kimi ni Todoke’s second season and Yumekui Merry.

    • Posted January 21, 2011 at 11:49 pm | Permalink

      I dropped this.
      I will only watch it again based on the sole opinion of someone I don’t know because I am unable to make my own decisions.
      Instead of watching a show with excellent production value from a proven and historically excellent time slot, I’m watching a magical girl show, a blond alien show, a gender identity show, a blushing-and-hand-holding show, and an absurdly powerful loli show.

      /sarcasm

      • Posted January 22, 2011 at 11:09 am | Permalink

        Hey, I trust Scamp! Unable to make my own decisions my ass! I mean, isn’t anime blogging there to present the opinions about a show? Isn’t it obvious that I value the opinion of my favourite anime blogger?
        And the gender identity show is from the same timeslot.
        What’s up with you anyways? I can watch what I want, right? And Level E is an awesome show!

      • Posted January 23, 2011 at 6:47 pm | Permalink

        Sarcasm. Was in jest, friend. I’ve always been bad at jokes :(

  2. OHEMGEE
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

    for an anime like this, I always wait until it’s finished before watching, it just feels better that way.
    i’m hoping it’ll turn out well /:

  3. Posted January 21, 2011 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

    I agree about the episode. It’s not the best. Can Yamakan+Azuma even make a non-moe anime, given that’s all they’ve been steeped in for the past decade? Can they even deliver their original concept in just 11 episodes? I have serious doubts on both fronts.

  4. Posted January 21, 2011 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

    So for the record, I’m just gonna say I called fractale sucking on twitter after the first episode, back when everyone was all ghibli-ing over it. I feel sort of schadenfreudish about this anime now.

    On another note Yamakan is anti-moe!? Has he ever worked on anything that wasn’t moe?

  5. Raspy
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

    Personally I am giving this show just one more chance. If it can’t produce a half-decent episode next time I recon it is not worth it.

    Also I think I recognize the voice actor for the red-hair is the same that did Yui from K-on.

    And after all that hype and blind trust that Scamp and others gave to this show it is apparent that it is was just overblown.

  6. luffyluffy
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

    Dropped.

    Enjoy your retirement Yamakan.

    Poor FUNi though D:

  7. Thrashy
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

    So I guess I’m the only one who’s interested in seeing how Yamakan spins the idea of a collapsing transhuman society?

    …anyone?

    • AzarelHikaru
      Posted January 21, 2011 at 11:40 pm | Permalink

      *raises hand*

      The episode was like eating the same meal for three days straight. I got through it, but it felt bland and uninspired.

      I’m sticking to see the mysteries unfold, though. I guess my threshold for generic moe stuff is still pretty high.

      • AzarelHikaru
        Posted January 21, 2011 at 11:41 pm | Permalink

        Oh yeah… the head priestess’s name is Moeran. Go figure. XD

      • Thrashy
        Posted January 22, 2011 at 1:36 am | Permalink

        Everybody’s complaining about Nessa being a moe character, but the thing that annoys me most is the Team Rocket-quality villain crew. What’s up with that?

        I’m wondering if maybe Yamamoto’s experimenting with reinterpreting his themes through common anime tropes. Or maybe I’m reading into it too much, and his interview was just blowing smoke.

  8. imananon
    Posted January 21, 2011 at 11:59 pm | Permalink

    So it has one moe character. Big whoop. The main thin I noticed in this episode was that it seemed like someone cared while they were making it, mainly in the animation. Not dropped by me, not by a long shot.

  9. Posted January 22, 2011 at 1:39 am | Permalink

    Calling this show moe is like tagging a Miyazaki movie as moe. Not to compare the quality of a Ghibli movie to a Noitamina TV show (I think Miyazaki sucks most of the time), but a youthful character acting youthful is a pretty fucking sad reason to discredit an anime trying its hardest to appeal to a wide audience. Fractale was made for adults as well as children. I’m afraid the only group that this anime isn’t made for are those otaku who can’t take their Moe Trait Detection Glasses™ off for a few minutes.

    • Posted January 25, 2011 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

      THANK YOU. I’ve been waiting for someone to say it. People seem care too much about industry politics and gossip to actually just watch anime for what they are. Context is important, yes, but it shouldn’t dictate the quality of a show; it should be judged by its own merits, not by the reputation those associated with it.

  10. Scamp
    Posted January 22, 2011 at 1:54 am | Permalink

    Just want to throw this out there: I still like this show. It’s not amazing or anything, but it’s certainly one of the stronger ones this season. It was a strong sense of place along with clear objectives and direction. Plus screw the haters, I like the dopey villains. Anime needs more dopey villains

    It’s still flawed, and I wish Yamakan would shut the hell up, but I’m a long way away from ever considering dropping the thing

  11. ~xxx
    Posted January 22, 2011 at 4:05 am | Permalink

    Fractale in French?

    I’m not good at french…
    could I buy a translator?

  12. Posted January 22, 2011 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    still gonna watch this for now. hopefully the adventure part will take off in the next ep or so. i’m still really interested in the plot and wanna see what direction it goes in (classic dystopian novel or ala rahxephon lameness?)

  13. hikaru
    Posted January 22, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    Wow, the Fractale fans sure are being defensive…

    Not that it’s going to make a difference, but I’ve decided not to fansub Fractale. Instead I’ll just read your posts to see if it’ll be worthwhile picking up if it ever gets a DVD release. So don’t drop this one*! Please! =)

    *(only saying this because you said you wouldn’t drop Arakawa BridgexBridge but you kinda did T_T Not that I hold it against you or anything ^_^)

  14. Posted January 23, 2011 at 1:29 am | Permalink

    I was able to enjoy this episode because I turn a deaf ears and blind eyes to all the shit about Fractale that went on in the past week. Looks like my method works too perfectly since I ended up liking Nessa (I usually just hate moe archtype characters)

  15. romulus
    Posted January 23, 2011 at 4:48 am | Permalink

    Hey Scamp so the anime has lost that beginning of adventure feel the 1st ep had? I felt the same but it’s not a bad thing because the adventure had already begun! Seriously, the guy realises how not to depend on the systems, begins yearning to meet Phryne once again, funny bad guys make a successful move – how could this be a beginning of an adventure? The plot made a development as any plot should.
    BTW for me this is the best anime this season. It’s pretty well-made, my fav seiyuu as redhead genki,some real Engllish for a change, I simply love it.

  16. Lewin
    Posted January 24, 2011 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

    Hmm I kinda have the feeling that the show will contain a anvillicious Aesop about the importance of direct human contact etc. I hope I’m wrong.

  17. Posted January 26, 2011 at 12:50 am | Permalink

    That’s why I tend to ignore what directors say about their shows after Jun and Angel Beats!. Although I’m still sure he giving everyone the middle finger for not getting what he wanted, but still.

    Commentary on DVD’s are so much more enjoyable after seeing the movie.

    Don’t worry Scamp. There’s always Rio. Now there’s an instant classic.

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  • [...] I can’t see either of those offenses as graven sins. Directors like Ikuhara and Shinbo have been praised this year because, rather than talking, they just went out and made good anime, but I can only hope [...]

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