Coppelion and Galilei cross the finish line and fall over dead

Coppelion ends the way it begins, with a hopelessly messy and silly story taking the life out some effective moments.

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There’s a few things that the show has done well, believe it or not. Up to now, the running theme that the girls are artificial humans, dolls, created to do mankind’s bidding without any thanks or recompense, had been bandied around a bit by Haruto and the crazy girls, but it simply felt like an unanswerable dilemma that was getting in the way of the overall story, whatever that actually was. But e12 has a very good scene between Shion and Kanon. The latter, who had been crushed twice by boulders, finds herself alive (which at the time was funny), in pain, and without any hope, and begging for her own death, but her artificial genetics are preventing that. It’s a perspective on their lives we hadn’t seen before, and it feels more real than, say, Haruto’s petulance. So, naturally, her sister drags her off to attack the good guys in that giant spider. That’s more like it.

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Yeah, the spider’s encore was ridiculous again (though good to watch). As was the train nearly getting blown off the rails, undergoing sudden stops and starts, all while Taeko was performing a delicate C-section on the pregnant lady. Oh, and there was that water tank that just happened to be collapsing when the train passed underneath it. If you like that sort of thing, the final two episodes didn’t disappoint. Also, where did everyone go at the end? And what happened to the leader’s job, or that assistant, or when did Ibara’s arm heal up? And how can the crazy sisters repent if they’ve got serial killer genes? The more I think about it, the more oddities keep coming to mind.

Oh god, we're back where we started.
Oh god, we’re back where we started.

I’m willing to allow a few nutty things in an anime show with serious themes, it often makes watching more fun, but there was a disconnect here. We saw it in episode one. The realistic art and the grim tone set us up for a certain type of show, then they plunk three under-equipped schoolgirls in short skirts down into it, two of which shouldn’t have been there. The sheer idiocy of that, and the weird events that followed, meant that we couldn’t take most of the serious moments, er, seriously. Just as well, as they were mainly maudlin tales anyway. It’s a shame because the action scenes were often very good, and there were a few interesting things they managed to get across to us. But not enough.

Coppelion had plenty of problems but the ending was adequate. Galilei Donna‘s finale was one of the weakest I can think of.

it looks like a respectable courtroom, but ...
it looks like a respectable courtroom, but …

Both Galilei and Coppelion had some effective action scenes in it, so I thought there’d be a wild chase or two, some dramatic turnabouts and cosmic lightshows when the new source of energy is revealed. Instead the big scene happens in a courtroom … Okay, I thought, this is where Hazuki is going to show off her mad lawyer skills. After all, she spent the much of the series threatening to sue or prosecute people. Instead, all she does is sputter at the lies the bad guys are using as testimony.. Maybe she has a point; this is a weird courtroom.

'They never wrote!  They never called!
They never wrote! They never called!

The judge is asked by the prosecution to make a judgment then and there, with no deliberation. When mysterious testimony for the good guys shows up Hazuki starts grilling Francesco even though he’s not on the stand. Then Ferrari shows up and hijacks the whole thing. The judge doesn’t seem to mind. Their mother turning around and becoming good again wasn’t so bad, but when she does they play that heroic music they only use for big, positive events, and my heart sank. No big battles would occur. And so, Francesco is led off in cuffs in spite of the fact that he wasn’t even on trial, and then, the WTF of the episode, Roberto shoots him.

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Why? WHY? Because Roberto wanted to seize control? Because Francesco knew too much? Because Roberto had a change of heart? Because they couldn’t work him into the episode any other way? I’m flabbergasted. This is plotting on the level of Allison to Lillia, and any of you who experienced that mess knows what I mean, and I don’t make the comparison lightly. Honestly, if I missed something important let me know. ANYway, after that, there’s more sketch hunting. The world energy crisis seems to have been forgotten, temporarily. Damn, this show had some potential, too. Hozuki, cute little girl-genius, could be have attracted a lot of young viewers to root for her, but I don’t think even young people could handle the unlikable sisters, Roberto’s blood-lust, or it’s overly simplistic way of showing a world crisis. A shame, too, because it looked good and, like Coppelion, had some exciting, well-done action scenes. Well, goodbye to the two biggest disappointments of the season.

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6 thoughts on “Coppelion and Galilei cross the finish line and fall over dead

  1. These two were the biggest disappointments, for sure, but the rest of the season wasn’t far behind. It just wasn’t a good anime season overall; not many shows were excellent. Even Monogatari had some difficulty keeping quality high. The good news is that the number of series I want to add to my library is kept low.

  2. I haven’t gotten through Galilei Donna, but Coppelion was not at all what I wanted it to be. It seemed like at first like it was trying to be a more organized, more moe Kino’s Journey and ended up tripping in trying to balance all the moving parts. I’m sad to hear Galilei Donna wasn’t any better. It just kills me because so many of the fall releases have such huge animation budgets but don’t follow through with equal attention to the script. Le sigh.

    • I believe Coppelion is based on an earlier work, so we have that person to blame for the basic situation and story, though I don’t know if the anime stayed loyal to the source or not. And I will say that its action sequences are often very good. It’s the rest of it that’s the problem.

      You’re right, though, we’re starving for a coherent script AND a studio to throw money at it.

  3. I never made it past the first handful of episodes of Coppelion, so I’ll just take your word for it that it did one or two things well. Galilei Donna was the bigger disappointment for me, if only because unlike Coppelion, it actually started off promisingly enough. Subsequent episodes made me (very quickly) re-think my idea of it being a halfway decent show however, and I’m still not really sure why I kept watching to the end. … Bishounen pirate character, most likely.

  4. Oh yes, the pirates. Those guys who showed up every couple of episodes to interfere with the plot only to vanish again. Sadly mismanaged characters. They even tried to set up a romance and never got around to following through.

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