Blu Ray Review: Freedom



Bandai Visual




Freedom is a metaphor for humanity’s history with space exploration.  Once, long ago, we accomplished the impossible.  It seemed like there were no limts, that it was just a matter of time before people were living on the moon.

But then we got scared, people retreated and began to believe that continued existence is all we could ever dream of.

The seven episode OAV series, Freedom, opens on Eden, a domed city on the moon.  Eden’s elite carefully orchestrates the lives of its citizens, but not for any nefarious reason.  They are simply afraid.  The Earth was destroyed by man-made disasters and now the last remnants of the species has to be protected, like an endangered animal in a zoo.

The protagonist of the series is Tekeru.  He and his friends are young rebels, defying the authority of Eden at every opportunity.  Had things gone differently, he probably would have grown to of it and joined the establishment, as one of his friends does later in the series.  His character isn’t too deep; he’s essentially the personification of youthful exuberance.   He latches on to a goal, throws himself recklessly into it.  He doesn’t seem to believe that failure is possible, thus, he possesses a constant positive attitude.

Most of the time, his goals are modest, and end with him doing some court mandated community service, but that changes when he finds a photograph of a girl, sent from the Earth he thought long dead.  He decides that he is going to meet her, giving no thought to the logistics of how that could ever happen.

The depiction of space travel is realistic.  Parts of it (those from Eden in particular) are advanced compared to what we have, but they’re logical advances.  Earth technology is salvaged from earlier generations, so it’s recognizably modern.

There was a disaster on Earth; but the Earth is resilient, as are its people.  Tekaru heads to Earth and finds people struggling, but alive.  Ironically, with their struggle, comes freedom.  The people of Earth are livelier and more passionate than the sterile populous of Eden that Takeru left behind.  The people are as untamed and unpredictable as the planet itself, as Tekeru discovers when a hurricane strikes.

But the humans of Earth have also been frightened away from space travel, having suffered a fatal accident in their attempt to launch a rocket to the moon years earlier.

Dreaming is a pursuit of the young in the series.  The adults are so concerned with surviving that they’ve forgotten how to live.

Freedom is a lushy produced series about leaving the comfortable behind and aiming for something greater.  There is action, drama, comedy, and even a road trip in the middle.

The seven episodes are spread across four Blu Rays.  The video is flawless, as is the Dolby True-HD  audio.