Sora wo Kakeru Shoujo - Do You Have Control to Leap Through Space, Girl?
Warning: Please do not confuse this with the 1967 novel Toki wo Kakeru Shoujo (The Girl Who Leapt Through Time, most widely known for the 2006 anime film by Madhouse); just a reminder in case you skipped it when reading through Ryodo's OST review here.
With that out of the way, on with the review! I HAVE CONTROL!
As mentioned in the anime preview here, Sora wo Kakeru Shoujo (or Sora Kake Girl in short) - a 2009 anime by Sunrise, the same production house behind the Gundam series and Code Geass - tells the story of Akiha Shishido, a 17-year-old schoolgirl and heiress to the prestigious Shishido name, who runs away from the stresses of her family's legacy and her arranged marriage - not to mention living in the shadow of her older sisters - and stumbled upon a decommissioned colony and its rogue AI named Leopard, and adventure ensues across space, with new faces, places and events in store.
With only one episode available at the time of writing this review, I will fully focus on the pilot episode here... unless you want me to get the anime through illegal means, causing me to get in trouble with the authorities, but what would be the point in that? I mean, I have bills to pay, contracts to offer in order to prevent entropy, quotas to fill-
The story starts with Akiha being proposed by her eldest sister to be married off to a suitor. Immediately. At the tender age of seventeen.
Consider the following from a girl's perspective - you are a 17-year-old schoolgirl, doing all sorts of fun things teenage girls would do, and suddenly your parents gave you a marriage proposal to be the bride of a fine gentleman. Considering all the pros and cons, would you take it?
Not Akiha, who ran off to school with her Naviman, Imo-chan, before her mother could discuss further. After talking about it with a couple of her classmates, Akiha ran off with their help in a space pod, along with Imo-chan, and through the space debris, they stumbled upon a decommissioned space colony, manned by a magnificent rogue AI named Leopard. Well... before I spoil the whole episode, I suggest you watch the anime on anibee.
Then you may ask: "But Sensei, why would you want us to watch the anime?"
The depiction of outer space in the anime is quite breathtaking, to say the least. Imagine crossing over from driving around the space colony to driving through open space, overlooking the vastness of outer space in the comfort of your vehicle. Speaking of which, the concept of crossing over from the inner sanctum of the space colony with gravity to the freeways of open space with zero gravity serves as an interesting point to ponder as well.
However, the biggest selling point of the anime, voice-wise, is condensed in two words: Fukuyama Jun, the voice of Leopard. The seiyuu behind magnificent aristocrats such as Lelouch of Code Geass gave Leopard the aristocratic air emanating around him.
As for the anime in general, it has some funny parts, but what grips the audience to stay tuned to subsequent episodes is the copious amounts of foreshadowing among the characters in the first episode. What is causing Akiha's sister Nami to behave as such mid-episode? Who are the onlookers at the tail end of the episode? Questions like these are only answered in later episodes.
In conclusion, the first episode of Sora Kake Girl serves as a nice kick-off to the anime series, with a nice combination of character introduction and foreshadowing to keep audiences like you and me wanting more. Keep your eyes open for more episodes of Sora Kake Girl on anibee, and on a concluding note: