Shangri-La - In detail

• About Shangri-La
Cover of the Shangri-La light novel, published by Kadokawa Shoten.A picture of the main heroine of the Shangri-La anime — Kuniko Hojo.Shangri-La (シャングリ·ラ, Shanguri Ra; Шангри-Ла) is a new and fresh anime TV series, which encompasses a plausible and interesting speculative scenario about the the future of Earth, mixed with futuristic action fights between a rebellious and freedom-loving girl and the self-interested central Japanese government, controlled as a puppet on strings by a mysterious figure. The experiences and adventures (and misadventures) of their respective colorful circles of allies are also masterfully depicted. The etymology of the name Shangri-La refers to a vision of a hidden utopian earthly paradise and is a theme often found in many works of popculture

The anime itself is in fact the third incarnation of this work, which was first released as a light novel in Japanese and as a manga series. The original literary work was written by Eiichi Ikegami and was illustrated by Ken'ichi Yoshida, while the manga adaptation of the series began airing in the Japanese magazine Kadokawa Shoten's Ace Assault in January 2009 (later transferred to the Shōnen Ace magazine) and is illustrated by Tasuku Karasuma. The anime based on the motives of the series debuted in April 2009 on the Japanese channel Chiba TV and continued airing until September 2009; it is animated by studio Gonzo, directed by Makoto Bessho, written (script) by Hiroshi Ōnogi and features anime character designs by Range Murata. The Internet streaming media website Crunchyroll also aired the series on simulcast, with episodes with English subtitles airing one hour after they were released in Japan. In addition, streaming episodes for free public viewing for everyone were released a week later, although with a lower resolution. The anime spans 24 episodes in total.

• Plot
The story of the light novel, the manga and the anime series of the same title is relatively the same and is set in a neo-futuristic age, in which Tokyo has turned into the world’s largest “jungle-polis” (a city in the jungle) that absorbs CO2 (carbon dioxide). A tower city called Atlas houses the rich and privileged, and is the object of yearning of all that are not allowed to enter.

The world economy in this fictional world is run on the principle of buying and selling carbon credits, which redeem the excessive amounts of CO2 that is evaporated in the atmosphere by the different countries and states-polluters are economically weakened by extreme emissions and usually fall in a situation of social unrest and uprisings (even civil wars). A new and enigmatic player intervenes in the market and using his almost inhuman accuracy and a sense of clairvoyance of the market dynamics gradually manipulates the market indexes of entire superpowers. As if by using an "all-seeing eye" and "an invisible hand", this new market mastermind starts to dictate international politics and even puts the entire world market on the verge of bankruptcy towards the end of the series, which might lead to a new World War.

Meanwhile, the tower city Atlas holds ancient secrets which cause an even more abrupt and sudden whirl of events. Inhabited by a wide variety of colorful characters, such as a riotous and rebellious teenage girl (Kuniko Hojo), a child genius (Karin Ishida), a juvenile princess (Mikuni), a drag queen (Momoko), a female doctor (Sayoko), an army major (Kunihito Kusanagi), and an elderly gentleman and lady, Shangri-La’s hardcore world view plays out as an anime action saga.
The anime is a striking vision of Earth's future from some of Japan's foremost creative talents. Shangri-La is a tale of the futuristic struggle between greed and division versus bravery and the human spirit.

The plot is set against the backdrop/background of the panoramic theater of events of the Tokyo cityscape turned into a teeming jungle by runaway global warming. In this new world the elite lives in the comfort of the tower city, Atlas, while the less-privileged masses struggle in squalor, misery and poverty of the city of Duomo in the jungle. The story develops dynamically towards the end and escalates with the attack of the Metal-Age rebellion on Atlas and the following events. In these extremely difficult circumstances only one girl, Kuniko Hojo, and her band of revolutionary guerrillas can find a way to preserve and protect the future for everyone.

For some people this anime TV series may seem a bit childish or overly clichéd at certain moments, but it has its own unquestioned pros and less noticeable cons (like the relatively slow plot progression in the first episodes). All in all, it leaves you with many pleasant memories of the time you spent watching it and it isn't a bad anime overall. In addition, it also paves ground for more serious thinking on topics such as the future, freedom, futurism, the technoscientific progress and the relation "human-technologies". Out of the varied palette of characters depicted in the series, everyone may find at least one or two that one can sympathize with or see as interesting or funny.

• Categories
sci-fi, action, adventure, coming of age, cyberpunk, horror, Japan, military, navy, based on an original work: novel, post-apocalyptic, unexpected plot twists, a hard-to-follow plot, Seinen, super powers, time: the Future, traps, underworld, tragedy, comedy, etc.

• Tags
Akihabara, boomerang, computers, cosplay, heterochimia (often refers to characters with more than one colour in an eye or two eyes of entirely different colours. Can also describe instances of portraying everyday scenery with unusual colours to draw attention or set a certain mood.), jungle, manipulations, marketing scheme, masochist, optical camouflage, prison, rebellion, sadism, sadomasochism, good OST, good opening music theme & ending music theme, transsexual, young girl manipulates world`s financial market, futuristic architecture, eco-catastrophy.

CompoZer — a free and complete web authoring system that combines web file management and easy-to-use WYSIWYG HTML/CSS web page editing. Powered by Mozilla.Article edited using:
Sources: Wikipedia, aniDB
Last edit: 13. 04. 2010
Autor: sahwar
Added by: sahwar
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