Of the entire Winter Anime list, Fractale instantly caught my attention, perhaps because of all the words written on the list, “fractal” is the term that I have encountered several times. I enjoy this show because it has some in-depth meanings on how technology impacts humans and apparent socio-political implications. Also, I find it unique and refreshing in its own simple ways.
In terms of character design, I find them pleasing but not really fantastic. However, you can surely recognize the character development. I particularly like Nessa, I thought she is going to be annoying doppel–data or memory that interacts like human, who will screw up on everything, but it turned out that she is lovable, and despite her age I find her more intelligent and sensible than Phryne.
Artwise, it has nice and friendly ambiance. However, I find the color tone and setting somewhat old-fashioned, but I guess that what makes it unique and easy to follow.
On the other hand, I almost lost my enthusiasm after seeing the first episode; the show seemed to be too shallow and carefree for me—that time I wanted to see something that is extremely thought provoking and emotion driven. Little did I know, behind light ambience is where the irony hides. It is good that I did not drop it right away and stick-around until episode three, because that is where the story begins to unfold.
A quick snippet of Fractale is it tells the story of a young boy named Clain. One day, he saw a temple girl named Phryne being chased by three armed people. Eventually, Phryne managed to get away from her chasers. After seeing her wounded, Clain brought her home for treatment and also helped her to hide from those who are trailing her.
The incongruity and the bulk of the story is in the title itself; Fractale system pledges a life of pure relaxation and technology-driven lives. However, due to the overly convenient lifestyles, people do not talk to each other and do not work for a living anymore. Further, the extreme dependency in technology is turning people into less “humans”. For instance, families in Fractale System do not live together anymore, and people just spend their days stagnant.
Now, if we are going to look at the definition of fractal, it means rough, fragmented geometric shapes and reduced-size copy of the whole—opposite to the symmetric and smooth lifestyle that Fractale system offers. We can see that Indeed, Fractale system is the provider of the “whole package” of convenience to its citizens, however this supposedly “whole” is actually in a form of the reduced-size of the real thing. Aside from that, instead of being part of the entire picture, people sprout out as isolated entities of the picture. I truly believe that the author successfully incorporated the characteristic and symbolism of fractal in the story.
I’m not going deeper since I only intend to make sense why the show is named Fractale. I’m also going to reserve some thoughts for my final review. Hopefully, we will see a remarkable or intense finale.