Fractale | 04

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Departure view

There was heavy religious overtones since the beginning.  At first I thought why is the church handling matters of science.  Then it became how, when, and why did the church seize power.  Either there was already a strong church government in place or it merged with the church to combat the rising number of people rejecting the system.  An explanation on the matter would be nice but I wouldn’t hold my breath.

So the question we’re all asking ourselves is why the hell did Phyrne slap Clain?  Well it goes back to the first episode.  She left the brooch with him because she trusted him to keep it safe and hidden from the temple.  She didn’t expect him to pry into the data and release Nessa.  So she’s angry and slaps Clain because he betrayed her.  There’s some frustration there too.  Phyrne had every intention to return to the temple but her plan is foiled by Sunda, who captures her, and by Clain, who not only released Nessa but brought her straight into the temple’s clutches.

Nessa was quietly observing Phyrne the whole time.  For what purpose?  Gauging a potential rival for Clain’s attention of course.  Nessa has an emotional outburst after Phyrne slaps him.  It looks like she’s defending him but it’s really a display of the most adorable fit of jealousy by a child.  It’s the most vivid demonstration of her strong attachment and affection for Clain so far.  Nessa openly declares she doesn’t like Phyrne but the feeling is mutual as demonstrated by her fists passing thru the priestess.

On a side note, she wasn’t kidding when she called Clain her “home” in E02.  The strength of her bond with Clain is like that of a baby animal when it impresses its parent(s) at birth.  Impress is the behavior of bonding with anybody present when a newborn first opens it’s eyes.  Notice where Clain goes Nessa goes.

Anyway, it’s not the reunion Clain was expecting.  Her personality did a 180, and he’s confused by her curt and distant behavior.  We have to pity him because he was looking for her and thinking about her all this time.  We have to forgive her because our ice princess can’t help herself.  Girls like her tend to hold in their problems and throw up a tough exterior to pretend nothing is wrong.  Lucky for her, Clain is much too dense to be put off by the cold shoulder.

The secret of becoming a revolutionary leader – have the right blood type.  A popular mode of determining a character’s personality is by blood type in Japan.  This is why it’s frequently used in nippon manga, anime, and video games.  Based on this, we can see how the “wild” and “passionate” Sunda is leader of the Granites at such a young age.  Type B’s are lethal combined with charisma.

While Clain and Nessa is running away, she throws a tantrum because she correctly guessed his thoughts were with the other girl.  When he goes to help Phyrne, Nessa draws the line.  He thinks she’s just being difficult and leaves her behind, not realizing it means he’s choosing Phyrne over her.  It’s a shame, had she been older and this a different anime genre, cunning wiles may have won him over instead of using a childish ultimatum.

Phyrne understands Nessa is jealous unlike Clain.  She also know’s Clain likes her.  He all but confesses to her on the crazy bike ride but when she bluntly asks if he loves her, he can’t even stammer out an answer.  He still has a long way to go.  On the bright, side she doesn’t completely reject him.  Here’s a tip.  Make it clear and decisive when you’re rejecting a guy else he’ll think he still has a chance.  “I hate love!”  isn’t going cut it.  You can almost hear Clain think, “CHANCE-DA!”

Nessa is addressing Clain when she pouts, “Baka (stupid).”  She lost Clain to Phyrne so she’s sulking.  It’s a hard lesson but she needs to learn sometimes we don’t get what we want.

Nessa is probably more popular than Phyrne at this point because she comes off fairly apathetic this episode but lets remember her finer points.  She’s reckless and has absolutely no sense of modesty.  The new character we’ll tentatively call Bowl Head since he isn’t officially named in this episode, gives Phyrne three choices.  So what does our reluctant heroine do?  Makes a fourth option and drives off the cliff.  How can we overlook such an endearing quality?

Fractale encourages viewers to contemplate human nature.  The temple upholds the 22nd century view, humans are happier kept like sheep to prevent them from harming themselves when left to their own devices.  They believe humans naturally want an easy life and provide for all their needs.  In light of the brainwashing though, I have a strong suspicion people were programmed to socially isolate themselves.  If they don’t come together, they can’t spread feelings of dissent.  To their credit it worked for a 1000 years, but the innate yearning for a genuine family unit and social interaction bled through.  Clain developed an affinity for antiques because it’s his way of connecting with people.  Antiques hold memories and remind us of where we come from.

One more thing, some people are saying Fractale is an acid trip.  A minute 30 sec intro of  fractal patterns does not make an entire 23  minutes worth of coherent storytelling “ACID”.  If a mere repetition of a symmetrical pattern is trippy to them, they’ll have a blast with a kaleidoscope.

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