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Ginko: Planetarian

Discussion in 'Reviews' started by Ginko, Apr 22, 2017.

  1. Ginko

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    In honor of the global March for Science, I thought I'd pick up something in that vein. Planetarian is a short series about one gynoid's passion for science communication amid dire circumstances.

    Synopsis
    In a post-apocalyptic future, biological and nuclear war has ravaged the planet.

    An unnamed "junker" running from hostile robots hides in a ruined strip mall. To his surprise, he finds a planetarium in good condition, considering its surroundings. Even more of a surprise, it's inhabited by Yumemi, an especially talkative attendant.

    Yumemi, who was created to give presentations at the planetarium, is unable to thanks to a projector in disrepair. The Junker volunteers to repair "Miss Jena" while he takes shelter from the harsh weather and armed patrols outside.

    Analysis and Impressions
    Planetarian is short, very short. The series is only five episodes at 15-ish minutes each. The source material, a visual novel on PlayStation 2, isn't very long either. A viewer can blow through the whole series in a single sitting. Excluding the ending theme, the whole series is about a little over an hour. Its brevity is just enough time to learn about the characters and their motivations before concluding.

    The junker is clearly a survivalist, only concerned with making it to the next meal. Sure, the planetarium gives him shelter, but is it the only reason he stays? For once, it seems he is given a sense of purpose in repairing the projector.

    During the junker's stay, Yumemi wonders about her existence aloud. She questions her spirituality, even going so far as to have her own wishes for what an afterlife might be like. Having been more-or-less confined to the empty planetarium for some time, it's given her pause to think about what life (and death) means to her.

    Finally, Planetarian introduces a smidge of what's called "the cosmic perspective". For the uninitiated, the cosmic perspective is one that eliminates the boundaries created by countries and politics. From outer space, we are all on the same blue marble, sharing a short and tenuous existence together. In that light, the desire to be a steward of the planet and a sense of connection to all people takes precedent over territorial disputes and battles for resources. The cosmic perspective is awakened in the junker of Planetarian, and he will fight to keep that hopeful feeling alive.

    Who is it for?

    Fans of sci-fi and philosophy should take note. For its short length, the major themes leave plenty to talk about.

    Personally, the only thing that I don't like about it is that there isn't more. The ending came far, far too soon.
     
    #1 Ginko, Apr 22, 2017
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2018
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  2. Ddos_Dragon I Love Trophies

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    God, I love your reviews. I may not post responses, but, at most times, they convey my thoughts on the series fairly perfectly, and that's something praiseworthy, in of itself.

    For sure, a good reference for recommending a show to others.

    Thanks, man.
     
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  3. Ginko

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    Thanks for stopping to read my stuff, it's good to know the writing doesn't just go into the void.

    I'm glad I can articulate your thoughts, and hopefully the recommendations will occasionally help you find a new series to watch. Though one thing about a community of anime fans like this is reviews are sort of a catch-22. As a reviewer, you want to review series you have noteworthy impressions of, but there's a good chance most readers have already seen it and developed their own opinions. Still, if I can open someone up to anime they originally gave a pass to, then it's mission accomplished for me.
     

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