Fireball (anime)

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Fireball
Fireball DVD vol 1.jpg
Cover of the first DVD volume
ファイアボール
(Faiabōru)
Genre Science fiction
Anime television series
Directed by Wataru Arakawa
Written by Wataru Arakawa
Music by Yoshiyuki Usui
Studio Jinni's Animation Studios
Original run April 7, 2008June 30, 2008
Episodes 13 (List of episodes)
Anime television series
Fireball Charming
Directed by Wataru Arakawa
Written by Wataru Arakawa
Music by Yoshiyuki Usui
Studio Jinni's Animation Studios
Network Disney Channel, Tokyo MX
Original run April 4, 2011June 27, 2011
Episodes 13 (List of episodes)
Portal icon Anime and Manga portal

Fireball (ファイアボール Faiabōru?) is a series of CGI anime shorts created by Jinni's Animation Studios in conjunction with Disney.[1] The designer is Hitoshi Fukuchi.[2] It is animated entirely in 3D with no cel-shading of any sort, as would be typical for the medium.

The show takes place in the distant future of the 49th millennium, and revolves around the happenings inside a giant manor (named 'Tempest Tower') inhabited by two robots; the gynoid duchess Drossel von Flügel (title and full name: the 19th Lord of Uranos' Kingdom's Tempest Domain, Drossel Juno Vierzehntes Heizregister Fürstin von Flügel; voiced by Miyuki Kawashō) and her massive cyclopian arachnoid servant, Gedächtnis (voiced by Toru Okawa). The episodes are usually nonsensical in nature, normally showing the two characters making idle conversation in the midst of a war with humanity. A third character, a monkey-robot named "Schadenfreude", joins them later.

Synopsis[edit]

Very little context is given about the setting of the show. Of that which can be discerned (explained by Gedächtnis), the characters reside in a gigantic manor surrounded by a presumably Robot-inhabited city, beyond which is a desert that humanity's forces slowly encroach across during the 144-year timeframe in which the series is set (Merkur Era 48,650-48,794).

Gedächtnis is Drossel's servant and guardian, having sworn to her late father to protect her. Drossel treats him very much after the manner of the 'spoiled princess' stereotype (no doubt to further the comedic aspect of the show, but also in-synch with her appearance and the stylised postures she assumes). A running gag in the series is that, at the beginning, Gedächtnis waits for Drossel to arrive and is called by a name Drossel chooses seemingly at random (although some, such as Sancho Panza and Rasputin, infer an unambiguously subservient status upon him). Gedächtnis then attempts (in a gentile, butler-like fashion) to remind Drossel of his name, upon which she abruptly tells him not to interrupt. Another recurring joke is Drossel claiming that she practices karate despite her moves obviously being capoeira.

Drossel was manufactured as having the mind of a 14-year-old girl, with Gedächtnis' being that of a 50-year-old man; neither's age is explicitly stated, although both are known to be at least 2,800 years old - Gedächtnis stated that he entered service with the von Flugel family 2,800 years ago, and that it has been his duty to remain by Drossel's side for all of that time. Both Gedächtnis and Drossel move and speak in markedly unconventional ways, for example: instantly replying to each other at inhumanly fast speeds; freezing in postures until a new one is assumed (this is especially true of Drossel, what with her many princess-stereotype poses); replying in seemingly unrelated ways (although this may be due merely to the series' nonsensical nature). They remark upon how illogical human speech seems to them and act in what could be said to be an unemotional manner (although some emotional elements are retained for the sake of comedy and dramatic convention).

The characters occasionally display knowledge of elements that would normally be considered on the other side of the fourth wall - Drossel makes reference to what happened 'in the last episode', and at another time points out that she has heard something already in an anime; Gedächtnis stops a laughter track (and indeed, the episode) by punching the screen, causing it to fracture in the accustomed glass-splinter visual code and then to fall sideways to the floor.

The series sometimes makes serious points in otherwise complete nonsense - the city in which Tempest Tower is built (shown during the opening title sequence) appears to be stereotypically dystopian in appearance; in the episode Butterfly, Gedächtnis discusses the nature of rules, and what it is to be 'real' in an almost philosophical fashion, and the last episode features some distinctive 'last stand' elements (it is this episode in which Drossel recites her entire name and title and then walks to face the human forces just as the series ends).

Episode list[edit]

Fireball[edit]

No. Title Original airdate
01 "See the Aquatic Animals"
(その水棲動物を見よ Sono Suisei Dōbutsu o Miyo
April 7, 2008
02 "9:25"
(9:25 9:25
April 14, 2008
03 "The Day the Dolphin Flew"
(イルカが飛んだ日 Iruka ga Tonda hi
April 21, 2008
04 "St. Elmo's Fire"
(セントエルモの火 Sento Erumo no Hi
April 28, 2008
05 "Demon of the Frontal Lobe"
(前頭葉の惡魔 Zentōyō no Akuma
May 5, 2008
06 "An Unwavering Heart"
(ゆるぎないこころ Yuruginai Kokoro
May 12, 2008
07 "Prophecy"
(プロフェシー Purofeshī
May 19, 2008
08 "The Monkey in the Seat"
(座面の猿 Zamen no Saru
May 26, 2008
09 "Butterfly"
(バタフライ Batafurai
June 2, 2008
10 "Terminus"
(終着駅 Shūchakueki
June 9, 2008
11 "Intruders"
(侵入者たち Shinnyūsha-tachi
June 16, 2008
12 "The Virtual Eye"
(虚像の眼 Kyozō no Me
June 23, 2008
13 "Where Dreams Are Born"
(夢の生まれる場所 Yume no Umareru Basho
June 30, 2008

Fireball Special[edit]

No. Title Original airdate
01 "Fireball Special - Making of Fireball" 

Fireball Charming[edit]

No. Title Original airdate
01 "Bootstrap Continuum"
(ブートストラップ連続体 Būtosutorappu Renzoku-tai
April 4, 2011[3]
Drossel tells Gedächtnis of a dream where she encounters a human and considers using diplomacy to solve the robot-human conflict. At the end of the episode a human in gear resembling a space suit appears before them. 
02 "A Horse for Troy"
(トロイに木馬 Toroi ni Mokuba
April 11, 2011[4]
Gedächtnis gives Drossel lessons on grace and agility in preparation for an upcoming ball. 
03 "Klein Bottle Again"
(クラインの壷直し Kurain no Tsubo Naoshi
April 18, 2011[4]
04 "Vacant Space"
(うつろな宇宙 Utsurona Uchū
April 25, 2011[4]
05 "Table of Champions"
(チャンピオンたちの食卓 Chanpion-tachi no Shokutaku
May 2, 2011[4]
06 "Brainstorming Session Of Horror"
(恐怖の頭脳会議 Kyōfu no Zunō Kaigi
May 9, 2011[4]
07 "Wuthering Heights"
(嵐が丘 Arashigaoka
May 16, 2011[5]
08 "Gauntlet"
(ガントレット Gantoretto
May 23, 2011[5]
09 "Rules of the Game"
(ゲームの規則 Gēmu no Kisoku
May 30, 2011[5]
10 "Waiting for the Last Year"
(去年を待ちながら Kyonen o Machinagara
June 6, 2011[5]
11 "Limbo"
(リンボ Rinbo
June 13, 2011[6]
12 "Gravity"
(重力の糸車 Jūryoku no Itoguruma
June 20, 2011[6]
13 "The World Without Love"
(アイなき世界 Ai Naki Sekai
June 27, 2011[6]

Sequel[edit]

On August 10, 2010, it was announced on the official Fireball blog that the production for a second series had been green-lit. Director and writer Wataru Arakawa will be returning, and is planning for a 2011 release date.[7]

The sequel is titled Fireball Charming was released in 2011 and is set chronologically before the events of Fireball, making it a prequel series of sorts. (Fireball is set between the years 48650-48794; Charming begins in 48234, as shown on each episode's title cards.)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Shu-Ching Jean Chen (March 6, 2009). "Disney Partners With Toei Animation For 'Fireball'". Forbes. Retrieved May 13, 2009. 
  2. ^ http://tamashii.jp/t_kokkaku/t_kokkaku.php?eid=00010
  3. ^ "ファイアボール チャーミング" [Fireball Charming] (in Japanese). Web Newtype. Archived from the original on March 10, 2011. Retrieved March 11, 2011. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "ファイアボール チャーミング" (in Japanese). Web Newtype. Archived from the original on May 3, 2011. Retrieved May 3, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b c d "ファイアボール チャーミング" (in Japanese). Web Newtype. Archived from the original on May 12, 2011. Retrieved May 12, 2011. 
  6. ^ a b c "ファイアボール チャーミング" (in Japanese). Web Newtype. Archived from the original on June 10, 2011. Retrieved June 10, 2011. 
  7. ^ "「ファイアボール」新シリーズ制作決定". August 10, 2010. Retrieved August 15, 2010. 

External links[edit]