Posted by psgels on 16 November 2011 with categories: Anime Reviews




There was pretty much only one reason why I was really looking forward to checking out Infinite Ryvius: because I had seen it being praised for having very realistic and true to life characters. Now that I finished watching it, I can wholeheartedly agree with that, but just that statement alone also does a complete injustice of just how good this show really is.

The cast in this show is true to life, but by god, that’s not everything. This show has pretty much one of the best uses of teenagers in a space opera I’ve seen. Perhaps only Bokura no surpasses it here, if you really stretch the definition of “space opera”. This show is about the crew of a space ship. The entire cast of Infinite Ryvius consists out of teenagers, but for once, it makes perfect sense in the context of the story, they actually make full use of the young age of everyone to create a storyline that would never have been possible with adults. The fact that everyone is just a kid is vital to just about everything in the story.

What’s also amazing is how perfectly paced this show is. I mean, above I said that the characters are really true to life. They are very easy to relate to, and their actions throughout the series are very realistic. And yet at the same time the creators somehow turned this into a roller-coaster of a series that hardly ever takes a break. I’m completely amazed at how well the creators manage to weave everything together into one series. The cast of this show is huge, every episode brings a ton of new developments for the characters, and yet it doesn’t feel rushed. The story is the complete definition of utter chaos, and yet it’s full of twists, and yet the creators succeeded in making it move naturally. Despite having a ton of characters who all change significantly multiple times, all at their own pace, it makes sure to make all of them relatable, very strongly acted and miles away from stereotypes.

The only thing I’d have to mention against this series’ favor is that there is techno-babble, but it’s not even badly used. This show has its own original setting, and with that comes a bit of terminology that will take a bit of time to remember all of the different aspects of it.

Seriously, this may not have strings of over the top action scenes, but this show was made in 1999. I haven’t seen any Sunrise series made after that that was able to top this series. Not even Bakumatsu Kikansetsu Irohanihoheto. It’s an emotional roller-coaster that somehow managed to avoid stereotypes, one-dimensional characters, hamming it up or other kinds of insincere melodrama, and it manages to blend all sorts of emotions wonderfully together. Definitely a recommendation for science fiction fans.

Storytelling: 10/10 – Rock-solid themes, fantastically balanced pacing, is guided by chaos, and yet manages to lead that chaos into a wonderful storyline.
Characters: 10/10 – An utterly brilliant cast of characters who play wonderfully off each other.
Production-Values: 8/10 – No flashy graphics, but very good inbetween work.
Setting: 9/10 – There are some very neat ideas. Not just on the backstory itself, but also how it’s used in context with the story.

Suggestions:
Zone of the Enders
Gankuen Senki Muryou

17 Responses

  1. valinor89 says:

    I’ve seen it twice and loved every episode. I prefer the animation style of those years than what they do today.

  2. sywen says:

    this is one of my favourites aswell, glad you decided to watch it afterall :)

    but, a (very) minor flaw i find in this show, is that sometimes the drama seemed to forced. otherways, i agree with you completely

  3. stuff says:

    I’m not a huge fan of the animation (OR the dub), but story-wise it’s pretty much a perfect show. My only complaint with the script would be that some character decisions at the end seemed disproportionate (a couple characters went REALLY crazy – you know who I’m talking about). And that, with that in mind, the epilogue episode was WAY too happy-go-lucky.

    But seriously, this is a terribly underrated, pretty much perfect anime. I watched it about six months ago and haven’t been able to get into much anime since because it just set such a high bar for me.

  4. Taara535 says:

    Yeah this series really puts this season of anime to absolute shame. I’m just thinking of re-watching this now..

  5. skyhack says:

    Sits on my shelf right next to “Excel Saga”. I love ‘em both.

  6. Chris says:

    @stuff: the dub used child actors and it led to a rather unprofessional dub sadly.

    I wouldn’t rate this show over 90, but I agree that it deserves a bigger audience. I enjoyed the total breakdown of the characters a lot more than the sci-fi battles. They started off strong, but then it just got a bit too silly.

  7. Sukigu says:

    I just finished watching this last week and was surprised to see it reviewed here, seeing as it’s unfortunately not very known.
    There’s just a minor aspect you didn’t focus at all: the soundtrack. Those hip-hop tunes blended with the anime’s space setting very nicely (my favorite one is “easy living”!), but it’s nice to see more fans of this awesome series still appearing, myself included. :D

  8. evolstar says:

    My favorite space opera series, second only to Legend of the Galactic Heroes. You hit on all its good points dead on. I love how they fleshed out all major characters down to those who had no role in the actual fighting; too many space operas (Seikai no Senki and Starship Operators are examples) only focus on the officers and not the crew. I recommend this series not only to sci-fi fans, but to those who love character studies as well.

  9. Fauntleroy says:

    Planetes (2003) by Sunrise.

  10. Commenter says:

    Ah yes, Planetes is still better.

    But infinite rivius was pretty good. It’s one of those shows that has a million characters, but still manages to give them a feelinig of uniqueness AND the character development of the main characters was really good.

    I was amazed what they got away with though. This show had some hardcore moments that usually don’t happen to children.

  11. AKI says:

    I agree, psgels you should watch PlanetES next.

  12. Pax says:

    I have yet to complete this one, I watched a few episodes of it some years ago and I liked it but for some reason I never finished this one. I will start it again from zero sometime in the near future. Also, I was pretty sure you will enjoy this one since as I was watching Bokura no I immediately thought of this series.

    Planetes related I don’t think you should get your hopes too high psgels, more on this anime when you will review it even if I can’t say much since I dropped it at ep.5 and it took me a few years to give the manga a try, which actually is excellent so far.

  13. Firechick says:

    Fun facts about this show.

    Director: Goro Taniguchi (Code Geass)
    Series Composition: Yousuke Kuroda (Puni Puni Poemi)
    Composer: Katsuhisa Hattori (Ie Naki Ko Remi)

  14. Souther says:

    This was actually the first series Goro Taniguchi directed and it’s still one of his best, though arguably Planetes gives it a run for its money after a relatively questionable beginning.

    What Infinite Ryvius and his better works demonstrate is that Taniguchi can pull off some incredible stories about character drama, as long as the written script is good enough and there is a lot of time to flesh out the setting, which doesn’t always apply to some of his other works. Then again, unlike other viewers I’m still a fan of most of his projects, new and old.

  15. Hades says:

    @Pax

    Well, the first 6 episodes of Planetes are filler… and you should read/watch Planetes soon. The manga is more complete, but the anime is almost as fantastic as the manga itself. All I can say it’s Planetes have one of the most solid endings I’ve ever seen.

    I still have to watch Ryvius. Dinwloading here to check it out :)

  16. Jedman says:

    Really enjoyed this, although I felt some parts of the story weren’t very well explained, and didn’t make much sense, the setting and characters are very good, and it had a great atmosphere.

  17. Jedman says:

    Also how many times does kouji get hit in the face? must be some kind of record, happens in pretty much every episode.

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  • Emma
    (Tuesday, Aug 4. 2015 10:15 PM)
    @K-off: thanks for the rec on 2001 nights, read some of it, while all the stories were in their own way interesting, it was the lucifer rising one that caught my attention most of all.
  • Masky
    (Monday, Aug 3. 2015 11:47 AM)
    @;(: Nah, I meant in general, I didn’t read your posts beyond “You shouldn’t read manga like One Piece from the beginning”
  • Bam
    (Monday, Aug 3. 2015 03:32 AM)
    Man Witcher 3 is one dense game. I’ve put 110 hours in and I’m just over halfway thru. The amount of detail is staggering. I catch myself listening to NPCs for 10 minutes sometimes lol
  • ;(
    (Sunday, Aug 2. 2015 09:47 PM)
    @Masky: Are you talking about me?
    Because if you are, you completely misread all I wrote…
    But if that’s the case I don’t feel like explaining myself considering you probably don’t want to listen anyway…
  • Masky
    (Sunday, Aug 2. 2015 02:09 PM)
    Geez, people really make odd excuses when defending stuff they like ._.
    …I feel like thats probably hypocritical comment coming from me since I’ve probably done that too, but I think I usually go with attitude of “Hey, you’d probably not like it anyway, but I think you are wrong about that thing” xD
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 09:47 PM)
    @Aidan: I would recommend downloading it rather than browser-playing it as my browser kept crashing when I tried to.
    Its quite short but it gives a great teaser and introduction to the game, that gets me excited for it.
  • Emma
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 09:45 PM)
    @Aidan: Mangagamer have released the demo for kara no shoujo 2, they’ve also confirmed a release for Autumn. Its probably better to call this demo more of a prologue/compliment to the game with content exclusive to it.
    Demo/prologue here: http://mangagamer.org/kns2/
  • AidanAK47
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 02:14 PM)
    @invicableGod, Yep that comment was spam. Should have got rid of it first time I saw it.
  • Wicked
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:10 AM)
    well, this place changed a lot. Gotta say, I’m not a fan of how they adapted GATE into an anime. It feels too decompressed. Manga did a better job at keeping the tension taut
  • ;(
    (Saturday, Aug 1. 2015 01:08 AM)
    Also I am not the blog, I’m just a poster… I really hope you have enough sense to tell the difference…

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