Ergo Proxy

Title:Ergo Proxy
エルゴ プラクシー
Keywords: , , , , , , ,
Notables: R1 License - FUNimation
R1 License - Geneon (Defunct)
Sometime in the distant future, Humanity has managed to survive, but only in isolated cities and through the use of cloning and robotic servants called ‘autoraves’. Life in the cities are strictly controlled by management dedicated to preserving their 'utopian' way of life. But something is causing the ‘autoraves’ to become independent and is driving them to seek to escape the city. Real Mayer, a female inspector from the Citizen Information Board, learns that the awakenings of the ‘autoraves’ is caused by an encounter with something called a Proxy. In seeking to learn more, Real stumbles into a secret that management is desperately trying to hide and will go to any lengths to keep suppressed.

Animation by Manglobe Inc.
Aired on Japanese TV in Feb 2006.
R1/USA license by Geneon(USA).
R1 license picked up by FUNImation.
23 TV episodes

FUNImation is streaming this series to their YouTube Site -> Click here to visit.

3:32min High Resolution Trailer - ANN (Japanese) Streaming Vid
Episode Details 
00, 01, 02, 03, 98a, 98b, 98c
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Rent 9 9 8 7 8 8 Ggultra2764 [series:1294#1552]
Ergo Proxy was a solid watch for me compliments of its focus on the dystopia society that makes up the dome city of Romdeau, the mysteries surrounding Vincent Law and his connections to the beings known as Proxies and the search for any meaning humanity has in a post-apocalyptic world. The show effectively blends the themes of both human meaning and its dystopia together in establishing the world that is Romdeau. With the outside world uninhabitable for most people to live in due to pollution, the dome cities serve to provide humanity a means they can live in until the outside world becomes habitable again. However, this comes at the cost of freedoms humanity had before the dome cities were created as activity from the people are constantly monitored and looked after by machines with their roles being "cogs" to serve in the maintenance of the everyday functions provided in the city where no one is allowed to defy or question the existence of such a system.

Enter Re-l Meyer and her investigation into infected AutoRevs on a murder spree. Being defiant of the authority figures in Romdeau during her search for the culprit behind the AutoRev infections, Re-l slowly comes to realize that her superiors are connected to the mess with Autorevs and concealing much more information about the purpose of the domed cities and the existence of the beings known as Proxies. Her encounters with the mysterious immigrant known as Vincent Law further raises more mystery to Re-l over her place in the world alongside the complicated mysteries surrounding her.

The characters seen throughout Ergo Proxy are quite deep in their search for meaning to their lives within the show's post-apocalyptic setting. All the major characters and factions in this series suffer from some form of tragic flaw over their existence that they are trying to seek answers for or willing to just bear with things to the very end. This also applies with the infected Autorevs who gain self-awareness over their surroundings, a big case being with Pino as she accompanies Vincent and later Re-l on their journey.

I have heard of the visuals to the series getting a considerable amount of praise from folks for the mix of cel-shaded animation and CG animated settings and visual effects. I will admit that this series was, for the most part, good to look at with dark colors that do well at depicting the grim, foreboding mood that the series gives off with character designs and settings having a great amount of detail. The CG-rendered settings blend in well with the cel-shaded character designs for most scenes and there is a good amount of fluid movement at points coming from intense battles that Re-l, Autorevs or Proxies are entangled in. The show also makes effective use of some camera effects at points to enhance the suspense of tense scenes. For example, the show creates a slow-motion panning shot in the second episode as Vincent flees from a Proxy in a shopping mall as the Proxy slaughters anyone in the way of its pursuit.

The show does have its issues that bog it down a bit and keep me from wanting to give it a Buy. Ergo Proxy depicts a mood similar that of post-apocalyptic titles like Gilgamesh in the fact that most characters in this series are emotionally detached from the events surrounding them. While this adds to the dark mood the show gives off with characters dragged into the societal system set up within the domed cities, it could prevent the viewer from feeling any sort of attachment to the characters in this series. In particular, I found it tough to connect with Re-l throughout the series due to her lack of concern for others at most points and her seemingly self-absorbed attitude.

Some other issues I found with the show had to do with its consistency in sticking with its overall mood and narrative style. There were a few episodes in the show that were out of place with the show's dark, serious mood and linear storytelling such as a game show episode that served as a teaser of events to come in the show's second half and a couple dream episodes involving Pino and Vincent (the former having some relevance with character exploration despite its bizarre showing, the latter a pointless waste of time). The show also leaves a plot element dangling in the form of Vincent and Re-l's relationship as it was left unclear whether or not Re-l reciprocated Vincent's thoughts of her.

Setting aside my gripes, Ergo Proxy was a solid series in its exploration of the characters searching for meaning for their lives in the show's post-apocalyptic setting and exploring the mysteries surrounding the infected AutoRevs and the Proxies. I'll give this show a strong Rent recommendation.

Last updated Monday, May 02 2011. Created Monday, May 02 2011.
Buy 10 9 9 8 9 9 Dreamer [series:1294#2279]

Art, Animation and Character Design
The art was excellent. I rarely, rarely give anything a score of 10, but this one deserved it for art. At times, it would seem "gothic" and dark but it would lend to the overall dark atmosphere of this anime. The animation was really good as well, but at times would suffer a loss of a bit of frame rate. Hardly noticeable really. Character designs were excellent as well. This ain't your typical set of "colorful" anime characters for sure.

There's really no music to speak of in this anime. The lack of music made the anime that much more "serious" or "dark". It actually worked too. The ending theme song was "darkish" in nature. Fitting for this anime. Although it wasn't of my taste, it did well for the credits.

Series and Episode Story
This plot was short of amazing. One of the best plots I've come across and with a breathtaking, awesome ending. It has several things going on all at the same time.... subplots to be accurate. At first the anime starts off slow, but as it progresses, it picks up slightly until the end... where everything comes together in a masterful conclusion. The storyboard really keeps you engaged and wanting to know more about what's going on and details you want to figure out.... thus anticipation for the next episode builds. There's no humor here. Everything is serious and watching the plot unfold, you might want to pay attention to every little detail.... and word spoken. It's sorta critical to understanding what happens in the end.

Overall, this is one hell of an anime. One of the better ones to date. Don't miss this one for sure.

Last updated Saturday, February 21 2009. Created Saturday, February 21 2009.
Rent 9 8 8 8 8 7 chibi [series:1294#2380]
In a post-apocalyptic world, pockets of humans shelter in domed cities and use their advanced technology to survive the poisoned environment outside. But technology is beginning to fail them, their population is dwindling, they are becoming increasingly dependent on their robot servant 'autoraves' for existence, and life is losing its meaning. When the autoraves begin contracting the 'Cogito virus' and becoming self-aware, and a shadowy and seemingly unstoppable monster stalks the city, even the all-powerful Regents seem helpless to prevent the doom that is closing in on what's left of the race...

I just realized that nobody had entered a rating for this series, so I thought I would put in something. Shinsen finally finished their fansubs at the end of August '07, and you really should get them if you can. Their high resolution and 5.1 sound do justice to the technical excellence of the Ergo Proxy, and their episode notes help explain a lot of the cultural and philosophical references that are scattered throughout.

Ergo Proxy is a rather dark show, the story is almost Gothic, with lots of secrets and hidden motivations. It also moves fairly slowly, but move it does towards an ending that ties all the seemingly unconnected threads together. Although it's science fiction, it relies much more on drama than on technology.

Last updated Saturday, December 01 2007. Created Saturday, December 01 2007.
Buy Jan-Chan [series:1294#967]
Much of this series mystic is based on the strangeness and mystery that surrounds Real, Vincent, the autorave named Pino, the Ergo Proxy and the world that they live in. But just hang in there - each new episode surrenders another clue, sliver of truth or insight, as the story slowly begins to gain momentum.

Be aware that there are a lot of indirect references to a large number of existentialist writers and philosophers, which contribute to the surreal nature of the story. (Shinsen does a great job of providing information on the references.)

The tranquility and tightly structured life within the Romdeau city dome has come under threat. The autoraves (or robotic humanoid attendants) that serve the needs of the citizens are becoming infected with the cognito virus, which causes an awakening in them. Infected autoraves begin to act independently and go on a rampage. While the source of the infection and how it is spread is not known, the only way to limit the damage is to forcibly terminate the affected autorave.

Real Mayer, an inspector from the Citizen Information Board, follows up on a report of an infected autorave. While destroying two infected autoraves, she encounters something very strange and very dangerous. Dropping on her from above, a creature leaps out of 4th floor window, leaving only a strange handprint.

Later that night, the creature stalks her and attacks her in apartment. In the haze and confusion of the encounter, Real finds herself pinned to the wall by a looming monster. It looks her in the eyes, presses a bony thumb to her lips and then disappears as strangely it first appeared.

The events of next day gives Real a clear understanding of her situation. The destruction of her apartment is reported as a mechanical failure with no mention of any creature and all her attempts get more information are being blocked. Frustrated and angry at the lack of information, Real returns to her devastated apartment in hopes of finding some clues as to her attacker. Hidden in the debris of bathroom, she finds a strange pendent. It is simular to a pendent that she saw being worn by Vincent Law, a recent immigrant to Romdeau who is working as part of the security team hunting down infected autoraves.

Why is his pendent in her apartment? Who is Vincent and how is he associated with this creature? And might this creature be involved with the cognito virus that is endangering the dome?

Real Mayer is a female inspector from the Citizen Information Board, who is looked after by Iggy, her personal autorave.

Just who is Vincent Law and how is he associated with the creature known as the Ergo Proxy?

Pino is a playful child-companion autorave who befriends Vincent. Although she is infected with the cognito virus, she behaves very differently than the other awakened autoraves.

Last updated Saturday, January 23 2010. Created Saturday, May 27 2006.

Other Sites
Official Japanese (Language) Series Web Site
Wikipedia listing for Ergo Proxy

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