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Review
Show: Vision of Escaflowne, The (1996)  
Review by: Animetique
This summary/review is provided by animetique.com and used under the Creative Commons License.
Story:

My Rating: 4.0 out of 5.0

The Vision of Escaflowne is a wonderful fantasy anime about a girl from Earth named Hitomi and her adventures on the mysterious world of Gaea. Hitomi's a typical high school girl in most ways, although she can read tarot cards to predict the future.

One day, she has a strange vision of a boy battling a dragon. Not long after, she is preparing for the upcoming track meet when her vision becomes real. A portal opens and an alien boy named Van slays a dragon before her eyes. When the battle is done, Hitomi transports with the boy from Earth to Gaea, where Van is king of the land of Fanelia.

Almost as soon as she gets there, Fanelia is destroyed by mechs called Guymelefs but she and Van are able to escape in Escaflowne, Van's legendary Guymelef powered by the heart of the dragon he slew.

As the series continues, the battle on Gaea becomes more intense as Hitomi's predictions continue to play out as foreseen & as she re-evaluates her feelings for Van and for Allen, a knight in the land of Asturia who resembles her crush on Earth. Gaea sits in the midst of battle between the evil Zeibach forces controlling the Guymelefs & those who are trying to save Gaea from the fate suffered many years earlier in the Atlantean society.

One of the best things about Escaflowne is the character designs. Hitomi feels like the Earth girl dropped into a foreign land and must fend for herself while winning allies. Van, a boy filled with vengeance and anger, soon finds his fate is tied to hers and must face his past to fulfill his destiny. Then there's Allen, the bishounen knight who courts Hitomi, and Merle, the cat-girl in love with Van who provides comic relief.

While there's plenty of romance in this anime, there's also a fair share of mech fighting as Van must take back his land from the series villains, Dilandau and Folken. Overall, this is a great epic fantasy series and one I highly recommend.

Animation:

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5.0

The animation of Escaflowne is top notch for a tv series. The artwork is highly detailed with a high production value.

Music:

My Rating: 5.0 out of 5.0

The music of Escaflowne is very much a prominent component to the story itself, and like its movie counterpart, is quite beautiful! This has to be one of the best soundtracks I've heard!

Character Design:

My Rating: 4.0 out of 5.0

One of the many elements Escaflowne has going for it is it's incredibly fleshed out characters. The series spends a great deal of time with Hitomi's character as she struggles both to choose between Van and Allen and to use her powers to help those of Gaea in the ongoing battle against Lord Folken. Unlike a lot of anime, however, not only do you spend a great deal of time getting to know Hitomi, but pretty much all of the other characters.

The story does a tremendous job of digging into everyone's past so you really get a feel for their motivations. This is true not only for our heroes, but also for the "villainous" characters as well.
Last Updated: 1/25/2007
Other Reviews by Animetique
1) FLCL (Updated: 1/18/2007)
2) Ah! My Goddess! (Updated: 1/18/2007)
3) The Animatrix (Updated: 1/18/2007)
4) Chobits (Updated: 1/25/2007)
5) Parasite Dolls (Updated: 1/25/2007)
6) Noir (Updated: 1/25/2007)
7) Martian Successor Nadesico (Updated: 1/25/2007)
8) Gasaraki (Updated: 1/25/2007)
9) Fullmetal Alchemist (Updated: 1/25/2007)
10) The Vision of Escaflowne (Updated: 1/25/2007)
11) Neon Genesis Evangelion (Updated: 1/25/2007)
12) Scrapped Princess (Updated: 2/8/2007)
13) Escaflowne (Updated: 2/8/2007)
14) Metropolis (Updated: 2/9/2007)
15) Howl's Moving Castle (Updated: 2/9/2007)
16) Spirited Away (Updated: 2/15/2007)
17) Tenchi Forever! (Updated: 2/15/2007)
18) Blood: The Last Vampire (Updated: 4/4/2007)
19) Paranoia Agent (Updated: 4/23/2007)
20) Perfect Blue (Updated: 5/10/2007)
21) Elfen Lied (Updated: 5/17/2007)
22) R.O.D the TV (Updated: 6/5/2007)
23) Read or Die (Updated: 6/5/2007)
24) Elfen Lied (Updated: 6/29/2007)
25) The Twelve Kingdoms (Updated: 7/9/2007)
26) Love Hina (Updated: 8/17/2007)
27) Samurai Champloo (Updated: 3/6/2008)
28) Texhnolyze (Updated: 3/12/2008)
29) Tsukihime Lunar Legend (Updated: 9/2/2008)
30) Full Metal Panic! (Updated: 2/2/2009)
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