Fractale: Underneath the Fractured Tale
April 5, 2011 Leave a comment
Warning: This post contains minor spoilers to Fractale.
Fractale is the popular Miyazaki-esque Winter 2010-11 anime about a world too dependent on the Fractale system, a network of information and data that makes the lives of humans a complete luxury, effortlessly passing on information on anything and everything needed at the moment in time; all to keep humankind’s prosperity and well-being preserved. Fractale had a good start at the beginning of the season. Its tone and atmosphere were set well, its characters introduced smoothly, and the story (very early in time) progressed with ease. While Fractale’s story is above average at best, the story falters from somewhere-before-halfway and up to the end, which is a damn shame because had the plot been given more time to progress correctly, they would be able to progress the plot along with the character development, instead of only being able to focus on character development. However, Fractale’s strong point doesn’t lie within it’s wishy-washy plot, but rather its theme.
Fractale holds two themes within it.
It’s important to understand that Fractale is a social science fiction. Social science is a broad term that contains many different branches of the study of society. This show focuses on (social) anthropology, the study of behavioral and physical nature of humans (and how they behave in a certain social group) , and sociology, the study of society in general. In the show, there is a system of hierarchy, or more specifically, social classes; the elites that control the system of Fractale, the rich aristocracy that thrive off of Fractale, the lower class that depend on Fractale for survival, the poor that have been deprived of Fractale, and the subversive leftist society that opposes Fractale. Fractale is the metaphorical representation of prosperity.
While the theory of Fractale in the show is the basis of social classes, it also carries another meaning, proving the shows double-theme. One in the before mentioned way, and another from the fact that the show is fiction. Because the Fractale system creates an absolute luxury for its worshipers, the people of society within Fractale (the show) lose their sense of morals and ethics of hard work and appreciation, which also reflects the people of actual modern society.
The reason Fractale’s story turns sour is because of the importance that the character development had. By developing the characters, the viewer begins to understand the two themes. With the leeway of only 11 episodes, they would be unable to develop the story to its fullest while developing the character well enough. Had they tried to meet halfway and the develop the plot equally with the characters, then the two would still be insufficiently developed because in the end, there is only 11 episodes. Even with the pseudo-explanation of how Phryne and Nessa work as the “keys” to Fractale, the plot still seemed unfinished and/or rushed. It’s an unfortunate case of untapped potential but nonetheless, it was mostly enjoyable for its characters and animation.