Posted on 10 August 2008 with categories: Anime Reviews, FREEDOM



With the guy behind Kakurenbou as director and the director of Akira behind the screenplay and character-designs comes the ambitious project called FREEDOM, one of the few anime to be totally rendered in 3D cell-shaded CG. It’s obviously a technique that has its pros and cons, and most people will probably need to get used to the style, but once you can look beyond this, you’ll be rewarded by a charming little science-fiction series.

The big strength of this series is its cast of characters. Even though they’re a bunch of hot-headed 14-year-old guys, this series somehow makes them worthwhile. The stereotypes are there, and yet the antics of the main protagonists turn out very charming. The flaws in this series mostly pop up in the final episode, where the creators try to be a bit too epic for their own good.

Ah crap, this review is rubbish. Apologies, I’m having a blackout right now. A tip for all you reviewers out there: do not write a review if it’s been half a year or more since you saw the majority of it… If you want to get a better idea of this series, then read the rest of the posts I’ve written about it. It’s a very nice OVA to watch with great characters and it’s got a soundtrack that’s among Ike Yoshihiro’s best work. Period.

Storytelling: 8/10
Characters: 9/10
Production-Values: 9/10
Setting: 8/10
Posted on with categories: FREEDOM



Short Synopsis: The big finale of Freedom, where Takeru tries to reunite Earth with Eden.
Highlights: Straightforward but fun finale.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10
Well, the final episode was bound to lack in terms of realism. It’s impossible to change the entire political structure of a country with just the words of one guy. Why else do you think that China is currently still happily continuing its violations of human rights? The main leader of Eden also just didn’t get enough proper time to be fleshed out, so his rather stupid decisions were the worst thing of this final episode of Freedom.

I mean, making Kazuma, the one who helped Takeru escape, into one of the highest ranking-officers in just two and a half years. Who in his right mind would do such an unsafe thing? Kazuma was bound to use this power to rebel. There was also this strange fight scene between Kazuma and Takeru, which left both with scratches and bruises… only for these to magically disappear in the next scene…

Still, apart from that, the finale was done very nicely. The ones who were left behind on Eden changed very interestingly, especially Taira turned from Takeru’s rival to the one who organized the rebellion. For a bit, I feared that Ao would turn into a damsel in distress when she got caught, but at least she didn’t sit still and do nothing, but instead tried to convey her ideals to the people from Eden.

It was obvious that despite the doubled length, this wouldn’t be the best instalment of Freedom, but thankfully it could have gone a lot worse. I liked the romance: it was there, but it was really subtle and never really interfered with what was really important.

Posted on 30 May 2008 with categories: FREEDOM


Tamaya!

*erhem* sorry, but I couldn’t resist. This episode had so many Ooedo Rocket-vibes. Heck, you could nearly say that this is Ooedo Rocket, condensed into just one episode, with the samurais removed, it’s almost scary to see how many similarities there are. And still it doesn’t feel like one of the two ripped off the other.

Seeing as I loved Ooedo Rocket, there’s no surprise that this was probably my favourite FREEDOM episode up till now. This episode had everything: fun characters, a great storyline of trying to create the rocket, a bit of background on why Ao was the one on the picture that Takeru found (her father once tried to go to the moon as well, but he failed. Ao was forced to forget everything that happened, and so she started to get really involved in the local space program). Blue Earth was of course the Akai of Ooedo Rocket. In this case, he was supposed to go to the moon along with Ao’s father, but chickened out at the last moment.

One point of criticism: it hardly feels like two and a half year have passed by. Characters still look the same, which is especially suspicious since we’re dealing with a bunch of teenagers here. I really wonder whether Freedom can pull off a good finale. Heck, what kind of finale is it going for anyway? At any case, I do hope that the creators won’t go for something too epic, especially since Freedom has been so delightfully down-to-earth up till now.

This episode also reminded me of why I love Yoshihiro Ike’s soundtracks so much. To be honest, he’s my favourite musician, along with Yuki Kajiura. Yoko Kanno’s work is excellent, but in my opinion she’s not the best.

Posted on 20 March 2008 with categories: FREEDOM


Seriously, Freedom is everything a shounen anime should be. Anime often seem to forget that every single fourteen year-old boy is an idiot, no matter what. Sure, they make their main male leads do something stupid once in a while, but that almost never goes further than an underdeveloped quirk. Freedom, however, is different, and it actually manages to portray the main characters as the idiots they are, and that’s where it starts playing with it.

In this episode, Takeru and Biz as expected get to know the people of Ao’s village and their customs. In the meantime, a typhoon passes by and Takeru confesses how he loves Ao and just travelled to earth to meet her. Biz was also really cute when he tried to impress a local radio-host.

I’m wondering how this series is planning to end. Will Takeru, Biz and Ao go back to the moon, or did the creators have something more epic in mind? And what’s this “Freedom” people keep speaking of.
F

Posted on 16 October 2007 with categories: FREEDOM


Koharu Biyori temporarily made me lose my faith in OVAs. Thankfully, FREEDOM managed to restore it. This is everything a shounen-adventure should be: fun, creative and most importantly: innocent.

And seriously, I love the OP and ED for this series. I finally realized that the OP consists out of rendered images from previous episodes, and it really looks excellent, and this really gives this series an even more unique style. The ED also still is catchy, even after hearing it a few times.

This episode was really different from the previous ones, and it mostly consisted out of the males, having fun and making idiots out of themselves. I laughed quite a bit, though, and some of the banter between both Takeru and Biz and the truck of idiots they run into was priceless. Takeru is one of the few shounen-leads that made an impression on me. Simply because he actually has a dream, albeit a little childish one (meeting the girl he fell in love with and all) and he doesn’t stop until he reaches it.
This is so much better than your average shounen lead who doesn’t have a goal beyond “score a girl”, or “become the best X in the world”. To me, it just shows that they just go in brainless random directions without any real goal in mind, and that’s not really that exciting for me. It also helps that this show is quite well written, with perhaps a few bugs as where the characters get their water from.

I also laughed when Takeru and Biz were really planning to show themselves to Ao in gold and silver alien-suits they received from the guys who provided them a ride. You think that the encounter would be the most romantic thing ever, but no, the writers had other ideas. ^^; Perhaps it’s because of that that the climax worked again so well, despite the predictability (I mean, they had to find the girl at the end of the episode, didn’t they?). It is going to be fun to see how he’s going to talk himself out of it, the next episode should promise to be fun, and I’m interested in how the creators decide to portray Ao.

Posted on 13 May 2007 with categories: FREEDOM


Even after its third instalment, FREEDOM still doesn’t fail to entertain, and yet again, it leaves us with another powerful climax. This probably is strengthened even more by the ED. The best OPs and EDs, in my opinion, don’t just consist of good songs, but also contribute to the anime they belong to. Mushishi, for example, just went on with its peaceful mood even when the ED set in. The OP for Wellber no Monogatari is a perfect introduction, which captures the essence of the anime quite nicely. It’s so much better than these OPs which feature flashes of each different protagonist just because they have to, or the EDs, whose only purpose is to show the credits.

The goal of this episode: send Takeru to Earth. Pretty straightforward, and it’s handled quite decently. He managed to escape from these strange robots we saw in the previous episode, barely avoiding suffocation, though. And I finally realize how important Alan is in all this. He took in the citizens who didn’t want to live in Eden. If I’m not mistaken, he called it Freedom, hence the title of this anime. Because he helped Takeru, though, he endangered it, and the citizens of Freedom are threatened to be retrained and turned into proper Eden Citizens. Still, he does manage to give Takeru instructions on how to use one of the escape rockets that were in the original version of Eden.

One thing I also like about this anime: it knows what it wants to be. It doesn’t try to introduce any needless side-quests in order to impress its viewers, it just wants to tell the story of Takeru, and how he unravels the mysteries around earth. That’s one of the advantages of being an OVA: you can’t waste time on needless fillers. So far, things have been very believable, with only a few botches, like the fact that when you slowly drive a car, it uses less fuel than when you race at full speed, and the fact that Tairo was very lucky to have run into Takeru like that. Apart from that, it avoided some major pitfalls, and it actually made the fact that Takeru got lifted off in the end plausible and believable. The solution for the food-source also was pretty nice, although I do wonder why people would leave a box full of instant-noodles in a place like that. XD

What also surprised me was how Kazuma ended up being left behind, while Bis, who was reluctant to go ended up going. Taira also was great when he tried to help Takeru get his way. Without him, Takeru probably would’ve failed, and I love how the rivalry between the two of them ended up. ^_^

Posted on 9 March 2007 with categories: FREEDOM

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usImage Hosted by ImageShack.us
Image Hosted by ImageShack.usImage Hosted by ImageShack.us

Short Synopsis: Earth has become completely uninhabitable due to the fall of a huge space station down the atmosphere. At least, that’s what people want the citizens of Eden to believe.
Good: The ending of the episode.
Bad: Okay, it wasn’t too realistic, though.
Overall Enjoyment Value: 8/10

Ah, why not. I’m going to blog this OVA. It’s only coming out once a season, and it could definitely use a bit of extra attention, as the setting is really interesting so far. I like how this anime uses the technique of cell-shading. It definitely works as an art style, though the creators still haven’t figured out how to synchronize mouth movement properly apparently.

This anime basically tells two stories: that of Takeru and his surroundings, his friends and his rivals, and his search for the mysterious girl in the picture. The first part may be nice and all, but what really caught my interest was the second part, ever since the ending of the previous episode. Me likes the mystery. This episode basically shows Takeru, trying to find the girl on the picture, and eventually discovering that she’s from earth. For some reason, however, the authorities of Eden are determined to keep this a secret from their citizens.

I loved the ending of this episode. Okay, it’s a bit overglorified, only when Takeru climbs a not-so-large mountain, he sees the earth very clearly, instead of on the horizon, and he just happens to run into the messages from earth, but I’m willing to forgive this to the creators. It seems this anime is going to focus on Takeru, as he tries to go against the government of Eden and return to earth. It’ll be interesting to see what happens in the end. So far, there are a lot of bad OVA’s around here, but FREEDOM definitely is worth watching.

Shoutbox

Name:
Email:
For:  
Mail will not be published
  • K-Off
    (Sunday, May 29. 2016 06:24 AM)
    @Bam Finally going to start DSIII this monday, I’ll have to see what’s so special about this one since I wasn’t the biggest fan of DSII.
  • K-Off
    (Sunday, May 29. 2016 06:17 AM)
    Pretty pleased with my Vita so far, finished Danganronpa 2 and completed 100% of Ray Gigant this week. June looks like a pretty good month for the Vita, currently deciding whether or not I should purchase Odin Sphere or Grand Kingdom when they release. Of course I really should repair my WiiU gamepad before Mirage Sessions comes out.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, May 28. 2016 08:11 PM)
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Saturday, May 28. 2016 08:10 PM)
    @Wicked: I might read that I liked Kodocha and parts of honey bitter.
    @Mario: I think shion sono made a live action movie of that.
  • SuperMario
    (Saturday, May 28. 2016 11:57 AM)
    @Maamoo: if you like datk twisted psychological thriller I would recommend my favorite manga: psychometrer Eiji. It’s a shame that they haven’t adapted it to anime yet
  • Wicked
    (Saturday, May 28. 2016 09:22 AM)
    @Maamoo I got one that might be right in your wheelhouse called Partner by Miho Obana. It’s dark, twisted, and crazy. Problem is I just can’t find it licensed and published in english anywhere.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Friday, May 27. 2016 08:02 PM)
    @Maamoo: I suppose if you’re looking for a shoujo manga I’d recommend Black rose Alice, afterschool nightmare, Count cain(and its sequel Godchild), angel sanctuary.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Friday, May 27. 2016 07:59 PM)
    @Mamamoo: Keep in mind that although monster will be suspenseful/nailbiting/chilling/a mature thriller with one heck of a villain, it will have filler/drag/too many arcs. Berserk will be an experience of highs and lows and it kind of declines after a particular arc. Good decision choosing cardcaptor sakura’s manga over the anime, the anime I think left some stuff out.
  • mamamoo
    (Friday, May 27. 2016 05:35 PM)
    I’ve decided to get into manga on whim today after exclusively only watch anime for 6 years. I’m thinking of getting Monster, Berserk, Cardcaptor Sakura and 1 more. I think I want another shoujo manga in there to just keep the balance. Any recommendations? I like complicated\\pyschological dark stuff which sounds a bit contradictory to the shoujo genre but I’m just putting it out there for a recc
  • AidanAK47
    (Friday, May 27. 2016 04:11 PM)
    @K-Off, I do have the option to update WordPress but to do so I need psgels FTP password. I could try sending him a message to see if I can get that or if he can do it himself.

1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · »

Featured Posts

Bungou Stray Dogs 08a

Bungou Stray Dogs – 08

I have to say more than anything this is Bungou Stray Dogs’ special episode, in a sense that in one hand, the show produces one of its most brilliance ever, but on the other hand, there are still many shortcomings along with the greatness, producing an episode that mostly entertainment but uneven. The introduction of […]

Joker Game - 08 1

Joker Game – 08

Well Joker Game managed to pull a twist I didn’t see coming and what makes it rather amusing is that it did it unintentionally. For you see it took the entire episode for me to figure out that I wasn’t watching the antics of another spy of the D-agency only to figure out that this […]

Flying witch 07b

Flying witch – 07

One of the thing that Flying witch always does it right is how it establish the chemistry between any characters, while at the same time maintain the consistency in their personalities. It feels like if you give them any random characters in any random situation, pretty much the show can hit it off. Last week […]

Re Zero kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu - 08 1

Re:Zero -Starting Life in Another World – 08

I feel bad for the artists and animators who made the opening and ending for this show as they don’t seem to be getting much use. Not that I am complaining of course as if the choice is between a catchy theme song and more content then content wins every time. Though it is a […]

Kiznaiver - 07 4

Kiznaiver – 07

To some this may be the strongest episode of Kiznaiver to date. However to someone like myself I find myself mixed on what I just witnessed. I have said before that what I like about this series are the aspects which are distinctly Trigger which would be it’s sense of wacky humor and character chemistry. […]

Mayoiga 07b

Mayoiga – 08

Again this week Mayoiga succeed at bringing a big screw-you to us audience. The cliffhanger last week is quickly revealed, and we come to learn that Masaki is not a ghost, nor is she a witch, but simply that… she had visited the Lost Village before. Big surprise! It really is a ridiculous anti-climax, but […]

1

Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress – 06

If you haven’t heard by now, the second season of Attack on Titan has been delayed till 2017 because Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress is far too awesome for Studio Wit to handle in a single year. I really couldn’t care less about the delay since I already know what’s going to happen in season […]

Bungou Stray Dogs 07d

Bungou Stray Dogs – 07

This week the plot revolving the Azure King was resolved and it raises the conflict of sense of justice between Dazai and Kunikida. Like what I suspected last week, all the new characters are in play in this episode and now I get the hang of Bungou Stray Dogs storytelling now. The new characters will […]

Joker Game - 07 3

Joker Game – 07

You know, I am beginning to wonder just how do those lessons go at the D-Agency. Is it something like “Ok, class. Today I will teach you how to summon dolphins with a whistle. After that we will go over the magic rituals of Aleister Crowley and finally have a refresher on the finer points […]

Latest Reviews

20160513001913_1

Lucid9: Inciting Incident Video Game Review – 85/100

It’s not often I pick a game up without prior knowledge. I abhor the act of pre-ordering and at least do a google search on the title to get a general idea of it’s overall quality. Gone are the day you walk into a game store and buy something purely on a whim or the […]

The Totem Warrior

Chinese Animation Guide – Part 3: Haoliners inputs

This part we explore one Chinese animation studio’s works. I choose Haoliners partly because they are independent studio, and their works are not hard to find. Just established in 2013, Haoliners is an indie studio but gathered more reputation in the last few years in their homeland. My experience with them through those titles below […]

Cover

Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress OST Review

This will be the first time in my anime blogging career that I have ever done one of these anime OST review. It should be known that I have a complete bias for Hiroyuki Sawano as he has become one of the biggest composer for anime in recent years in some of my favorite anime […]

Nüwa’s Growth Diary

Chinese Animation Guide – Part 2: Chinese Anime shows

As much as I hated the term Chinese Anime (Anime stands for Japanese animation, strictly speaking), this is the exact term for those shows. Their influence from the Anime was so heavy that apart from the voice cast and some scene settings, you can’t tell those apart from the original anime. With that said, judge from […]

If anyone have been followed animation closely for the last few years, they will notice a recent rise of Chinese animation (call it a wave if you like), both in feature and in series. While it does not have much of an impact in any English speaking world like anime has been, they are really popular in their mainland and some parts of Asian countries. With the success of Kung Fu Panda (half-produced by China) and its power on movies industry (China IS the main market for feature films now), it is worth it to take a look on this current trend and see how they are different from anime.
While my fellow bloggers are the ones who more specialize in Games and Manga, I will be the one who cover World Animation (by that I mean anything animated other than anime and American big studio animation – they got way too much coverage already). Like majority of you guys I am not from China, my Chinese is as good as my Japanese (which is to say NONE), so this is actually goddamn difficult to look for titles, and the information I could find are sacred here on top of that find a suitable sub for it, most of them does not even have an English name, thus the title and the synopsis that I give you here are just a rough translation. So behold. This is our very first attempt to cover the animation of china.

Chinese Animation Guide – Part 1: Computer Animated Wuxia shows

If anyone have been followed animation closely for the last few years, they will notice a recent rise of Chinese animation (call it a wave if you like), both in feature and in series. While it does not have much of an impact in any English speaking world like anime has been, they are really popular […]

asagao to kase-san

K-Off’s Ongoing Manga Recommendations (embedded links)

If you frequent the frontpage of Imgur or r/manga often, you may have seen some of my past manga recommendation lists before, but here’s some ongoing manga that I’ll recommend for now. This is in no particular order of best-worst, I’ve also embedded the links to the scanlations into the images for your convenience. 1. […]

New Manga Spotlight – Konya wa Tsuki ga Kirei Desu ga, Toriaezu Shi ne, Shoujo Fujuubun and Shimanami Tasogare

New Manga Spotlight – Konya wa Tsuki ga Kirei Desu ga, Toriaezu Shi ne, Shoujo Fujuubun and Shimanami Tasogare

Konya wa Tsuki ga Kirei Desu ga, Toriaezu Shi ne Two chapters so far. Ah love, that sweet nectar which all seek to experience. And truly there is nothing more romantic than gathering up your courage, inviting the girl you love up to the roof, taking her by the shoulders and proclaiming with all your […]

kQtrlYU

Langrisser Re:Incarnation Tensei video game review- 35/100 (avoid it like the plague)

To preface, I’d call this the poor man’s Fire Emblem if it wasn’t so damn expensive for its quality, not to mention so difficult to find. Here in New York City outside of lower Manhattan, there’s game stores in Brooklyn, Queens, Flatiron, and Newport, to a total count of 12 game stores in a 20 […]

413420_20160420220647_1

DanganRonpa 2: Goodbye Despair Video Game Review – 90/100

There may be those of you who know this series more by its anime adaption instead of it’s video games and if you haven’t watched the anime of this I highly recommend that you don’t watch it. Instead play the games which have been recently ported to Steam. The reason I say this is that […]