Anime Discussion: Haibane Renmei

5 08 2009

From one of my favorite creators, Yoshitoshi ABe, Haibane Renmei is the anime I’ll be talking about on this post of the Anime Discussion series!

Haibane Renmei

Haibane Renmei


The Anime Discussion series is focused on animes with adult or really deep themes (not meaning erotic or violent content), a little to serve as recommendation to more serious themes in japanese animation, a little so you can show to your friends/parents/relatives that animes are not for kids only.

The three possible titles actually are: Haibane Renmei, Ailes Grises or Charcoal Feather Federation.
And once again, the reason I’m making a post about it is both the art and the plot.
Haibane Renmei

Haibane Renmei


As you probably noticed, the first thing that got my attention was the artwork. Yoshitoshi ABe is the same author from Serial Experiments Lain.
The impression I had was of an animated painting, with scenarios that couldn’t be compared to anything else I had lay my eyes to.
Haibane Renmei

Haibane Renmei


And then, when I started watching it, the plot proved to be as unique as the artwork.
It’s centered on Rakka, and the anime begins with her “birth”.
She’s the new Haibane, and one of the few things we know is that they are born on cocoon, at different ages, and they know nothing about their previous selfs.
Here’s the episode zero, prelude or promo:

Haibanes are all born in Old Home, which looks like a really old apartment complex, located in the town of Glie that is isolated from the rest of the world by huge walls.
Inside the walls basically 3 different “classes” live together… the Haibanes, normal humans and the Toga, the only ones that can have access to outside the walls, only they never speak and never reveal their faces.
Haibane Renmei

Haibane Renmei


Despite the plot surrounded in mistery, the anime follows a slow pace, with Rakka trying to find her own way of living with the new friends and situation. It might take some getting used to, just like most complex animes.
Religion is never explicitly raised as a subject, but it can be considered as one of the themes… since the Haibanes have wings and halo, and people are bound to think about that.
But as I see, the main themes here are: some political content, trying to live despite hardships, trying to adapt to a new place, choices we make in life, lots of feelings like friendship, guilt and regret, and finally death.
Haibane Renmei

Haibane Renmei


It’s truly a masterpiece. One of those stories you’ll be able to watch when you get older, and then analyze it’s content once again, taking new conclusions from it.
The soundtrack is yet another major point, but you’ll hear it later on since some of it is on my permanent playlist series. 😀
Ok, enough of me talking (typing), here’s the opening:

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