Pale Cocoon

Title:Pale Cocoon
Keywords: , , , , , , , ,
Ura and Riko work in the "excavation" department of historical restoration, trying to find out what happened to the world back in the days when there was a blue sky and lots of green everywhere, to restore historical continuity and to learn from the errors made in the past. Ura's job is to decode and convert binary data, Riko's job is interpretation of the data; but everyday being confronted with a world so much better than the one they're living in now takes a toll on them. And one day, Ura restores a strange video...

[OVA, 2005, 1 episode, 22 min]
View this in a streaming online subtitled format at CrunchyRole.
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Buy 10 9 7 8 9 Ggultra2764 [series:1310#1552]
A world in which mankind doesn't want to remember its painful past is the concept behind the solid execution of this OAV. There are two sides to this storyline that are explored in this animated short: curiosity of the lost past seen through the eyes of Ura and those wishing to escape from their past pains through Riko and the others who lacked interest in the excavation project. The plot makes more sense as you keep watching the OAV as more hints of the events that led up to the world in which Ura and Riko live in now become clear.

The artwork and animation to this OAV wowed me with all the computer animation that was used to render the city and computer screens used in the excavation project. It was quite a visual treat that went well with the premise of this animated short. The character designs, on the other hand, looked plain and lacked the visual flair that the artwork made me giddy over.

Overall, Pale Cocoon made for a solid sci-fi drama that made effective use of its visuals and main theme of humanity escaping from their pains.

Last updated Saturday, July 26 2008. Created Saturday, July 26 2008.
Buy 9 10 7 9 9 8 Devil Doll [series:1310#752]
[Score: 84%]
  • Drama: Low (more like a tragedy, but not referring to this anime's characters)
  • Comedy: None (dark and gloomy, full of despair)
  • Action: None/Low (well, the final scene is quite something)
  • SciFi: High (science and technology being the focus of this story)
  • Ecchi: None (absolutely)
It's difficult to characterize this one-episode OVA. It has no comedy but I somehow don't feel it's a drama either; it's just one momentary snapshot of a situation where mankind is trying to deal with its own past. Perhaps Hoshi no Koe would be the best comparison, being a show of a similar setting, mood and length.

One of the best Animations I've seen to date: Lots of three-dimensional stuff and movement, obviously computer generated, and an awesome watch at least; if you loved Kumo no Mukou, Yakusoku no Basho then don't you miss this OVA.
Subdued, ambient Music with lots of drumming noise and some angelic sounds, very appropriate to the techno setting; lots of very technical or gloomy sounds that significantly improve the effect of desolation. The video clip that Ura restores has its own contemporary music but its focus lies on the lyrics, and the music just has to provide a background for it.

The Characters are where this piece of art is actually lacking. They're mainly used to carry the message, representing the opposing points of view for the crucial question: "Should we face the problem or close our eyes from the unbearable?", thus denying them any real personality - they're rather puzzle pieces than individuals (just like the "books" which are a nice element and more than a mere gimmick for me). Sure, Ura is somehow different from most of his people (and this will be important for the closing scene) but...
The strongest part of this OVA could have been the message, and I almost gave Series Story the top score - save for that final line of the anime which somehow destroyed the power of this experience. One of the best elements of this OVA is that you learn what actually happened (and why) step by step, providing an aura of mystery - that's why I'm reluctant of spoiling too much about the story. Even when you have watched the OVA some aspects may still appear mysterius; the fansubbers added a README file with their own interpretation of the events to clear up some of the mysteries (such as the location of these events which you'll learn about only late in the anime).

After rewatching this marvellous work I upgraded my rating to "Buy", despite the problems I have with it.

Last updated Friday, April 18 2008. Created Wednesday, February 15 2006.

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