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Elemental Gelade

Feb 10, 2010


Well, what can I say?  This anime has an interesting story to say the least (if not the MOST original ever).  Basically, a young sky-pirate named Coud (or Cou for short), pretty much just wants to "become a man", you know, find a girl, become a full-fledged member of the "Red Lynks" (the pirate group he is a part of) and earn the right to have a proper weapon, go after adventure, find treasure, all the usuals that young upstarts aspire to.  After a usual raid of another ship, onboard was found a coffin which contained a legendary "weapon" in the form of a pretty young (or at least young looking, as they dont age as we do) girl named Ren, otherwise known as an Edel Raid.  Edel Raids are a species which look like humans except they age much slower than we do, have an "Elemental Gelade" (hence the name of the show) or gemstone somewhere on their bodies, and they can merge with a human to become a very powerful weapon (Ren turns into a sword and has wind abilities), along with other powers that vary from one Edel Raid to another and ancient "spells" or chants of great power.  And, of course, as all of these stories go, thats when the trouble begins.  While a trio from the organization "Arc Aile" (an Edel Raid protection agency formed to keep humans from abusing Edel Raids for their powers) try to barter for Ren, which Cou takes much offense to, ninja from an unknown source attack looking for Ren.  With no other option, and because of Cou's heartfelt words and actions in protecting Ren, Ren decides to "React" or merge with Cou (which forms a so called "contract" with Cou until his death) allowing Cou to defeat the ninja and escape with the help of the Arc Aile from the crashing ship.  Cou's captains final orders were for him to protect Ren, and if he does so, he will earn the right to become a full-fledged pirate.  Not wanting to let his captain down (or leave the beautiful Ren alone and defenseless) Cou decides to follow and protect her on her trip to the "Edel Gardens", and the Arc Aile members decide to tag along.  So begins their journey across continents to get Ren to her "home" safely.

I must say, the plot was pretty good, its a pretty original story and theres plenty of action and twists abound to keep you interested.  Not much filler or dull spots as the pacing was done well.  And all the important characters (and even a couple of minor ones) have plenty of back-story to be told.


For a 2005 production, the visuals were not the most outstanding around, but their certainly nothing to scoff at.  The colors are all vibrant and look nice, the backgrounds are pleasant to look at, and at times (mostly when Ren and Cou are alone together watching the stars and such) are beautiful, all the characters are done well, if a little simple and the action sequences and CGI effects are all very good.  My only real gripe about the animation in this anime is its simplicity, with a little more detail work, the visuals would have been outstanding, but the style fits the light-hearted theme and its done well so Im not going to complain too much about it.


The sound was very good.  All the voice acting (at least in the Japanese dub, I couldnt get past the "narrator voice" in the opening sequence to give the English dub a chance) was spot on.  Cou's VA was every bit the young, confident (but not overly so) optimistic, rough-neck sky pirate, Ren's VA was an exceptional compliment as the shy, quiet girl still afraid of the world, and all the other VA's were well chosen as well.  Sound effects were done very well and everything sounded crisp and clear.  The best part of the audio was the music though.  Although nothing stood out especially in particular, and Im not really under any inclination to find a copy of any of the tracks, whenever there was music, it fit the scene and the mood perfectly and so subtly you almost cant tell its there.  From romping accordion and fiddle pirate tunes and subtle echoing string melodies to epic synthesized beats, every choice was spot on and well done.  The OP is an upbeat techno mix which suites the light-hearted theme perfectly, while the ED is a slower melody with an acoustical guitar which plays perfectly to the softer and more serious parts of the anime.  All in all, a very well done audio experience.


While none of the characters were the most original and dynamic characters Ive ever seen in an anime, they were well made and progressed very nicely throughout the anime.  The most development was given to Cou and Ren (obvously) but with plenty of time for most of the others to grow and develop as well.  Cou is a pretty damn good male lead, not conforming to either of the usual male stereotypes of "dumb as a post and pretty much useless" or the "silent badass."  Instead he is upbeat, outspoken, confident but still willing to learn and admit mistakes, skillful and steadfastly courageous, especially when it comes to protecting Ren.  While by no means is he an all powerful super-hero, hes got it where it counts and never hesitates in taking on overwhelming odds to do what is right.  And as he comes to learn how to use Rens powers and deals with his feelings for her, its plain that he is determined to grow as a man.  Ren on the other hand, starts off as the usual shy, cautious, quiet, almost oblivious mystical female, but spurred by Cou's kindness and genuine caring for her, slowly comes into her own as she grows more and more in love with him, along with building friendships with and learning to trust the rest of the group.


Overall, this was a great watch.  While nothing stands out as OMG FANTASTIC!!!. its solid where it counts and was a very enjoyable watch that you just cant help but like.  I would recommend this anime to anyone willing to overlook its minor shortcomings and slightly childish presentation for a lovable story and an enjoyable watch.

7.5/10 story
6.5/10 animation
8.5/10 sound
7.5/10 characters
8/10 overall
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XmonoXchromeX Sep 14, 2012

this review made it interesting and ill have to watch it sometime.

Also roriconfan you do realize one piece is an insanely long series and soul eater came out 3 years after this so where do you think they got the idea?

KA24DERACER May 22, 2012

I look at stories (be it movies, anime, books or anything else) in a sort of "bubble".  Its the only way you can call ANYTHING original any more.  Has the story type been done before?  Absolutely, no question.  But its about as original as anything these days is going to get in my opinion.

And as for it being forgettable, I found it to be charming in its simplicity and genuineness.  To me it was fun and easy to watch, unlike a lot of other animes, which has earned it a place in my favorites.

ThatAnimeSnob May 22, 2012

The story is not original as you make it and the anime as a whole is very forgettable next to One Piece or Soul Eater.