Fractale – Episodes 10 – 11 [END]

So we finally learn the whole truth behind Fractale: the original makers of Fractale split the original Phryne (who was really just an ordinary girl) into a body and spirit, to make a key and keyhole. However, after 700 years when Fractale was supposed to reboot, the attempt failed.  They then tried making bodies of 10 year old girls and trying to put the soul in them, but that failed.  Finally, Barrot discovered that the girl wasn’t 10, she was 16, and the 10 year old’s personality was actually her personality for her stuffed animal – named Nessa.

Finally Together

Finally Together

However, for the process to be complete, the personality of the “Key” – Phryne – had to be compatible as well.  However, this had to be achieved by inflicting the same harm to this Phryne as the original one: being sexually abused by her father which, in this case, was done by Barrot being this Phryne’s adoptive father.  This finally allowed Phryne to be compatible as the key.

Phryne and Nessa decide to join because they were originally one, and it’s really the only way to save Nessa, meaning that the Fractale system will exist for another 1000 years or so, but with the temple destroyed, it can’t be rebooted again, meaning that they’ve defeated Fractale in the long run, even if it still exists for the meantime.  The merger just merges the two’s personality together into the original Phryne’s personality.

In the end, I thought this was a decent to good series. It probably wasn’t as deep as it could have been, and it seemed like there was a lot of time chasing after either Phryne or Nessa that could have been used elsewhere, such as exploring a bit deeper into the Fractale system. We never really did learn why the original Phryne was used and the purpose of the clones were kind of explained, but it was still a bit confusing to me.

I think part of the purpose of all of that was to stress the relationship between Phryne, Nessa, and Clain instead of getting too bogged down in the background and explanation of the Fractale system, which is all well and good, though I think the series could have used a bit more of an explanation.  We get the feeling of what Fractale is and why people like it, but we really only scratch the surface, learning about it’s pros and cons but not really much else.

Despite some other things I’ve read online about this series, I didn’t find a problem with this series holding my interest.  In fact, I think it’s held my interest better than several other recent series I’ve been watching and catching up on.  I just think some things could have been executed better.  But I still don’t think it was a bad show.

Fractale – Episodes 7 – 9

So we learn a bit more about Phryne and Nessa’s role in the Fractale system.  Apparently Phryne is just one of many clones (including the priestess we saw in episode 3, as well as possibly the Head Priestess).  Why this Phryne is particularly special, I’m not sure, but it seems they kept creating clones either to keep the Fractale system running or to finally produce one that was suitable to be the “key” that would allow the system to reboot.

Is it still a threesome if a doppel is involved?

Is it still a threesome if a doppel is involved?

Phryne reveals that Nessa is the “soul” and she is the “body” which must merge in order to reboot Fractale, and she believes that they’ll both die – or at least not be the same person – after they merge.  That’s why she ran away with her, and probably why she didn’t like Nessa when she first met her.

Unfortunately, Phryne is still very headstrong, and decides to go back to persuade her “father” and the Head Priestess to, well, I’m not sure what. To end Fractale I guess, though I’m not sure how far she’ll get with that.

Speaking of her “father” (I’m not sure if he’s her biological father, or just called that because he’s in charge of the clone project), he seemed to be pretty creepy about Phryne, going so far as demanding to check that she was still a virgin, since I’m assuming she has to be to be a valid key.  Phryne clearly doesn’t like him in any case.

In any case, two episodes left, with Lost Millennium attacking the main Fractale Temple, though the Fractale forces clearly seem to have superior technology, so I’m sure the fight will be hard.

So far this has been an OK series.  Maybe not as good as I had hoped, but not that bad either. It at least has rewatch value, I think.

Fractale – Episodes 4 – 6

I guess we’re getting what’s going on bit by bit.  Clearly Fractale is a system that was put in place at least 400 years before the time of the story (since the first episode said something about it being 22nd century technology and Clain tried to use a 26th century algorithm to fix the ship in episode 5) which is used to keep the citizenry docile, though to what end I’m not sure of yet.

Phryne and Nessa finally make up

Phryne and Nessa finally make up

We know that Fractale has certain benefits: it keeps you healthy, gives you a guaranteed income, and gives one mobility, but at the cost of basically being brainwashed and discouraging truly intra-personal relationships (as in person-to-person and not through dopples).  Lost Millennium appears to be a loosely associated set of groups who all share the general goal of ending the Fractale system.  Groups such as Granitz appear to be generally non-hostile, except towards the people who administer the Fractale system, while other groups, such as Alabaster, trick people into disconnecting from Fractale, and then using their helplessness as a means to recruit new members.

Phryne seems to be the real mystery.  She’s run away from the Fractale priestesses, though we don’t know exactly to what end, though it seems that she believes that if she and Nessa ran away, it would somehow bring an end to the Fractale system.  However, she seems to be somewhat opposite of Nessa. While Nessa has said she “loves love,” Phryne said she “hates love,” though I think she’s lying to herself more than anything when she says that, since she doesn’t seem to mind Clain, and later, Nessa’s companionship.

There is still the mystery of why Fractale is failing and what the priestesses plan to do to fix it, and how that involves Phryne.  Also, there is still the question of what Nessa is, exactly, since Sunda seemed surprised that she was still around, even when they were in a zone where Fractale’s signals didn’t reach.

Fractale – Episode 3

The start of this episode definitely perked my interest, with them visiting an “old” village if you will, old being not using all the fancy technology.  And, interestingly, the people there can’t see doppels without visual assistance.

Just what the #%$@ is going on?

Just what the #%$@ is going on?

Not everything “older brother” says necessarily make sense (mainly the thing about 1000 years) but it’s clear that the people in the village have rejected the Fractale system, going as far as to remove the Fractale implants.  All of this doesn’t make sense to Clain until they bring him along to disrupt a Star Festival, which is believed by the people to be a religious ceremony that is meant to give you the grace of God – and also has the side effect of allowing people’s doppels to continue to work.  However, as Lost Millennium explains, it’s simply a brainwashing program to keep people from questioning the Fractale system.

So things brings up an interesting point – if it’s a brainwashing system by the government to prevent people from questioning Fractale, then this seems like a means to an end.  The question is what is the end?  Simply to keep people docile, or is there something even more sinister that is the goal?  And the “real” Nessa seemed to be the one in the center of the ceremony – and she appeared to have no connection to the Nessa doppel.  And to top it all off, Phyrne shows up and is revealed to be Nessa’s older sister.

So while Clain didn’t really partake in the Fractale system, he didn’t see anything particularly wrong with it, though present events evidently have started to shake that belief, though we’ll have to see if he is very happy with LM with them attacking the festival as well.

Fractale – Episode 2

Poor Clain goes from hanging out Phyrne, with a time traveling girl who doesn’t mind being seen naked to Nessa, a crazy/spunky girl who Clain doesn’t think is human, but who clearly isn’t a dopple either (and who is strongly suggested at the start of the episode to be the “key to the world”).  Oh, and she can make inanimate objects so crazy too.

Dopple or Human? Or Neither?

Dopple or Human? Or Neither?

Clain’s father also said something which startled him later on: that if they lived at home with Clain, then their freedoms could be curtailed.  It’s hard to say whether he simply meant their personal freedom to move freely (by not being constrained to living in a house) or whether it was meant to be something more broad.  In any case, Clain wasn’t exactly thrilled with the implication that his parents were putting their happiness above his which, really, is kind of the point of the whole dopple system, isn’t it?

Of course, we still don’t really seem to have an idea of what Nessa is, but it seems like whenever Clain wants to be around her, she wants to hang around and he can touch her, but if he doesn’t want her around, he can no longer touch her.  In any case, the three stooges are still intent on knowing who (or what) she is.

For that matter, we still have no clue how the dopples work.  We kind of know the theory, but we don’t know basic info such as…where are the people who are running them, and can they do other tasks while running their dopples (and if so, how?)

Fractale – Episode 1

So it’s time for my first show of 2011, and it happens to be Fractale.  This is an 11 episode series about a “Fractale System” that is beginning to collapse, and a boy finds a girl, and they go on a journey, and that’s about all I know other than the fact that it sounds interesting and it has pretty art.  I know that those don’t guarantee a good show, but it’s also amazing how much having good art and having a well thought out story correlates to each other.

Weird girls are weird.  But still hot.

Weird girls are weird. But still hot.

So we got some information already:  The fractale system is basically an internet of trillions of computers networked together, and people can basically get a living wage by installing a terminal within their body and uploading their “life log” to a central server.  While we didn’t get any direct evidence of this, I’m assuming the dopples have something to do with the fractale system as well.

Speaking of the dopples, it seems like it’s the whole “connecting remotely” thing taken to it’s logical extreme, where even family members don’t live together, but are still able to communicate and interact via remote means.  Why people like Clain’s parents (and most of the other people who hang around town) use dopples, I’m assuming we’ll find out later, but it seems that it’s out of convenience or perhaps some obligation to the fractale system.  One can’t help but think that there is some catch to the whole “sending your life log for cash” thing, though.

As for Phyrne, I’m assuming we haven’t seen the last of her, and it is strongly suggested that she is a time traveler.  The question is, is she from the past or future?  Clain said that the pendant she was wearing was very old, I think, so it would be interesting if we had a time travel story, but the traveler came from the past instead of the future.  And what was up with the girl popping out of the pendant at the end?

Overall, the animation (and Phyrne’s flying machine) remind me a lot of Ghibli’s work, and Nausicca particularly.  It’s kind of a nice change of pace animation style, though, with kind of an older animation style, but still with good animation quality as far as I could tell (though the stream was somewhat choppy).  I’m definitely looking forward to seeing where this series goes.