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Fractale Episodes 10 and 11 – The Long Goodbye

May 15, 2011 Leave a comment


If it seems like a long time since I wrote about Fractale, that’s because it has been. As of this writing, it’s been over a month  and a half since the finale episode aired, and I’ve been far too busy to write about it.

But in a sense, if the last two episodes had been groundbreaking, if they’d taken the show from being what was frankly a mediocre adventure show to being something truly special, I probably would have made the time. I made the time to write about Madoka realizing its potential and becoming the kind of show that is almost instantly a classic. If Fractale had turned into the show I’d wanted it to be from the beginning, you probably would have already read about it.
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Fractale Episode 9 – Almost Crimes

March 27, 2011 Leave a comment

Now that the base where Phryne has been endlessly cloned in order to create a version of her suitable to be The Key has been destroyed, the show is free to settle down into doing what it most enjoys: moments of small-scale character drama that presage some momentous, world-rending action in future episodes but are otherwise unmemorable.

I guess I should be more charitable. This episode does scatter some mild revelations about the Fractale system, and the nature of the Key. It also has a climax of sorts in the mandatory love triangle between the hero and two main heroines. But it’s mostly yet another bridge to a conclusion that could not hope to be satisfying enough to justify the interminable build-up.
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Fractale Episode 8 – Ungrateful Little Father

March 16, 2011 Leave a comment

After eight episodes and plenty of episodes that did much to fill in its unique setting but little to entertain, Fractale is finally fun to watch. Not only is it finally starting to give more answers than questions, but it finally stops trying to tell three complete stories in an episode. Even though it basically ends on a cliffhanger, this is the first episode that has felt satisfying in terms of story.
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Fractale Episode 7 – Post Electric Blues

March 6, 2011 Leave a comment

I mentioned last week that I thought Fractale was a sharp criticism of the modern otaku: the kind of person that would spend their lives in the digital world free of human connection that Fractale depicts. It’s a good thing I waited until this week to go into more detail, because this episode seems even more didactic than what has come before.
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Fractale Episode 6 – It’s All Gonna Break

February 28, 2011 Leave a comment

After a series of episodes that don’t stand up on their own at all, this episode gives us two (albeit related) stand-alone stories. At least they seem to be intended to stand on their own, because the episode ends with the Granitz airship taking off again for parts unknown. Really, though, I hope they come up again, because neither of them seem finished.
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Fractale Episodes 4 and 5 – Her Disappearing Theme

February 20, 2011 Leave a comment

Well, last week I wished for things to pick up, and they did. Episode four sees rebellious priestess Phryne captured by the Granitz family twice, Granitz village raided by the Temple (in search of Phryne) and a fierce motorized tricycle chase through the show’s pastoral landscape as Phryne and Clain struggle to avoid the Temple.

Episode five brings offers more background information on Phryne and the rambunctious digital persona she smuggled out of the Temple, Nessa. It also creates some new relationship dynamics between the main characters. You can’t say that nothing happens in these episodes.

So am I satisfied? Of course not.
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Fractale Episode 3 – World Sick

February 12, 2011 Leave a comment

When we last left our heroes, things seemed like they were finally starting to pick up. After all, they had just been kidnapped by what turns out to be terrorists, and were being carried via airship to their secret base.

Which, it turns out, is yet another pastoral village. That means yet another episode of world building, this time explaining the anti-Fractale group, Lost Millennium, and, in the process, how much the Fractale system impacts the daily lives of people in this world.
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