OVA (7 eps)
2006 - 2008
3.98 out of 5 from 1,403 votes
Rank #1,464

It is the year 2267, and all that is left of humanity now lives in the 'Eden colony', a domed metropolis on the moon. Earth has long since been abandoned after a cataclysm left it uninhabitable... or so the inhabitants of Eden are led to believe. But when a young boy named Takeru discovers a photograph of a girl which appears to have been taken on Earth, he begins to doubt that this is the case. With the help of his friends, Takeru decides to visit Earth in search of the girl; despite the fact that it is against the strict laws of the colony and despite not knowing what awaits him there...

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Reviews

MVortex
9

I went into this anime knowing it was a convoluted product plug for Nissin Cup Noodles. But actually really enjoyed it. Without giving away spoilers, the story is based on the moon in the future as we follow the adventures of Takeru and his friends Kazuma and Bismarck. People believe the earth to be dead so moon life seems ideal until a photo sets off the main story. It's quite a simplistic story that is easy to follow but doesn't get in the way or try to be too over complex. One reason why I liked this anime is because the story was presented in an exceptionally concise manner. I think the directors were wishing to present this story in the same way as you'd remember it if you had experienced it, if that makes sense ^_^ The animation was obviously digitized at times, so certain close ups became slighty pixelated which distracted the viewer. There should have been more aliasing at least to smooth out some of the frames as well. However the animation wasn't awful so I wouldn't give it less that 5. I'm giving it a 7 because I liked the reflections and some of the richly detailed lanscapes that brought to life the settings. In terms of sound, it wasn't too lacking, but some ambience effects could have been added throughout for immersions sake. Actually the background sounds were lacking, but it had a  vibrant soundtrack for a commercial so I wasn't dissatisfied. The characters were always audiable and the voice acting was good, at least the japanese was, I wouldn't bother with the other voice acting. I liked the simple characters because I didn't expect any emotion. I suppose if I had approached this thinking of a normal anime I would have expected a lot more character development. Overall, I found it a fun little OVA with a awkward simple message and not much point but lightly recommended for the journey and fairly unique way of presenting the passage of time.

Rbastid
4

It's 260 years in the future, and due to an accident with the space program that left the Earth uninhabitable, we now live on the far end of the moon. Many things have change for human kind, such as our inability to talk without looking like our mouth is filled with gum and marbles, our hands being the same size as space gloves even when the gloves are taken off, Cup of Noodles being colored better than the rest of the world and all cars sounding like the sub boss from level 3 of Streets of Rage 2, or at least thats what sticks out and somewhat ruins a pretty decent story. Story - 6/10 From episode one till episode five Freedom had a very good story (well even the last few episodes had one but more on that later) and a theme many can relate too, one that is common is space adventures, searching for love and exploring the unknown. Expect unlike many stories we've heard over the years, unknown is actually Earth.  One day during a type of community service, young Takeru finds pictures and other belongings on the surface of the moon, he believes they are from Earth and will now set off to find out. Unfortunately his Moon Colony, Eden, is run like a Vonnegut novel, where behavior is regulated by a counsel and enforced "for the greater good." But Takeru is now out to defy their orders in hopes of finding the girl in the pictures, he'll do so with the help of his two friends, some former rivals and a mysterious old man who knows all the little secrets of Eden. Sounds great, but once Takeru and his friend reach Earth, they find the girl, have two years pass in an instant and then they go back to the Moon. All this build up and we get a few days on Earth and a montage. The writers apparently thought "We have a great opening and a pretty good ending, who needs an actual story?” Now the last two episodes are still very entertaining, where Takeru and his friends come back to the moon and hope to return humanity, and Freedom's secret, back to Earth, all while fighting off the big government forces, but it just happens so quickly it's frustrating. It's an OVA where you actually wish it was a full fledged series. As for the Nissin plug, it didn't bother me so much as to ruin the series, it seemed campy but it's a common sight in TV shows and movies. What did seem odd is that a company would connect itself to a show that does have some political stances (Ones that stand completely against the company itself.) While the story speaks of Earth being ruined by a space shuttle crash that caused a climate shift, the comments and animation make you think of human caused climate change and wars for oil and other news headlines from the last decades, guess Nissan forgot how terrible for the environment their foam cups are. On the other pole they make a push against big government and it's oppression upon the people, the advances in science, art and entertainment all for "The greater good." Now I don't know how these issues stack up politically in Japan, but Nissin managed to put something in for members of both political spectrums here in the U.S. Animation - 4/10 The art at times was infuriating for this series. When up close the faces of characters look great, with the ability to see real emotion, but pull the perspective back ten feet and every face looks like a line drawing on a balloon. A few other aspects of the character design fail in the perspective department, with the opposite being true (better looking far away than up close,) such as the characters hands looking extremely swollen overtime the perspective gets close. The animation (movement) is also very tough to deal with. Everything is extremely clunky and feels as if they cut frames out to save time. Other times they go to the dreaded computer animation, which is jarring and badly done. But the biggest offender in the animation department are mouths. Be it in the original Japanese or the English versions, nothing syncs up properly. It really looks as if they just animated the characters and months later wrote the script, so no one knew how to make the characters look as if they are pronouncing things. One of the strangest choices for the animation department was their design for African American characters. Truly I haven't seen racial stereotypes like this in cartoons since Disney stopped making Anti-Japanese propaganda after World War 2.  All this is quiet unfortunate, as the scenery is amazingly done. The landscape of the moon, both when in full color and the beautifully eerie newspaper comic version they use from a distance, could win any animation award. As could the futuristic look of the town and the beauty of the Earth.  Another area of the animation that was rather nice were the shadows used on each character. They made the characters and their faces really pop and helped lessen the disturbance of the animation. Sound - 4/10 None of the music really jumped out as memorable. There were the occasional tunes and your typical anthems from movies and video games, a song during a chase, during a difficult endeavor and what not, but nothing to fill a soundtrack. The only music that really popped out was the guitar tracks used while they were traveling across America, very JJ Cale-ish country blues type tunes. The voices were pretty good, all which you've heard before and which fit the characters perfectly (again in the english dub.) They are actually good enough to at times have you over look the terrible facial expressions that don't match anything close to being said in either language. The sound effects were also pretty standard, but for the most part well crafted and blended together nicely when they needed help emphasize the scene, outside of the one annoyance I mentioned before. For some reason the space vehicles the teens use for racing, and subsequently escaping, all sound like the level three tree boss in Streets of Rage 2. Now i'll guess a good chunk of those watching this haven't played the game, but it just seemed so odd to me since it was an almost perfect sampling of it.  Characters - 2/10 The characters are some of the most unlikable I can remember in almost any form of entertainment.  Takeru needs to be locked in a cage somewhere. He's selfish, prone to violent outburst, delusional (oh I found a girls picture so let me risk the lives of my friends, and everyone who may need that space pod back on the moon, to go find her,) a pretty sick perverted individual and constantly takes credit for the work his buddies do. He is truly a terrible person. Multiple times he assaults his friends because they say something he doesn't agree with or they try to put a little sense into his head about finding this girl, one friend literally traveled nearly 225,000 miles to help him meet the girl and upon reaching the earth he attacks him. The best thing that could have happened to this series would have been if the rocket he was on exploded and we spent the next five episodes following Kazuma, Taira and Alan around the moon base. Biz, the engineer of the group, isn't a bad guy, just weak and annoying. He constantly gets pushed around and then whines about everything. The third friend in the group Kazuma, is one of Takeru's biggest enablers, but he does it because he's a friend who wants his other friends to be happy, so again unlike Takeru, he's a good guy. There are interesting characters in the series, or there could have been interesting characters I should say. Alan, Taira and pretty much anyone on Earth (outside of the annoying group of street kids that are basically depicted this way in every series that uses them) could have played a role in the series and made it easier to connect with, but no instead we get stuck with possibly the worst main character in all of entertainment. Overall - 4/10 The only saving grace for the series was the story line. A little more time spent on the moon and a bit more on earth and they would have nailed a great narrative, too bad that would then include more bad animation and most likely more Takeru.

Otaku108
4.5

Story:The story itself wasn't so bad, all around it had a good message, it progressed well and I enjoyed watching it. I wasn't overly impressed but it wasn't a complete botch job either.Animation:There really wasn't much to the anime that wowed me, it was obvious CGI cell shading style character designs but it was well detailed in it's vehicle and city designs. Still, for current tech it was sub-par.Sound:Sounds were pretty easy to ignore, nothing really stood out and yet to me that's a good thing. 7 is a pretty standard score for me to give this category unless something in particular got my attention in either direction.Characters:This is where it kinda started to fall off a bit for me... the main character I wanted to pretty much die for the majority of the show, his good friend that went with him I wanted to contract some horrid disease and then die. They annoyed me, multiple times, and at an alarming duration. Had this been more than 7 eps, I probably would have dropped it, still glad I didn't as it was worth the effort to deal with it and finish.Overall:As you've probably noticed there is a slight discrepancy from the actual average score and the overall score. My reason for this was inability to ignore impossible situations and obvious tension building scenarios. I really can't explain well because it would mean including spoilers which I really try my best not to include. Really this show had a lot to it but it fell short on the believability scale. Added to this with characters that often annoyed me and you get a poor score and not a lot of hype from yours truly.If you got 3 hrs to waste, give it a shot, there are worse things to do with your time by far, just don't expect this to find it's place in your top list.

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