Posted by : Deborah Takahashi Sunday, March 24, 2013

Plot Summary:
After the demise of the Royal Family, Vetti Sforza has crowned himself Holy Emperor of the Galaxy, favoring nobility and oppressing the masses. Michel Volban, leader of the People's Army, have been waging battle against the empire in order to restore order in the Galaxy. However, Vetti cares little for the People's Army and is obsessed with beating Michel and will pull out all of the stops to get him. What was supposed to be an ambush and the downfall of Michel, he is saved by a glass ship bearing the royal symbol. Not only is this ship a one of a kind, it is powerful and able to crush its opposition thanks to the rag tag crew led by a mysterious man named Cleo who claims to have royal blood running through his veins. After rescuing Michel from disaster, he asks Cleo to join his cause and fight to free the galaxy; however, this royal heir is nothing but a pirate. After agreeing to return Michel to headquarters, the crew run into quite a few close calls with Vetti and they learn that Michel is not who he seems to be; Michel is in fact a woman who is posing as her brother in order to lead the People against Vetti. Although Cleo knew from the beginning that Michel is a woman, he didn't say anything, which later reveals that he has deep feelings for her. Meanwhile, Vetti is not only pursuing Michel, he is obsessed with Cleo after failing to defeat him in a showdown that revealed he is dying. In order to live forever, Vetti must fulfill an ancient prophecy that will not only ensure his immortality, but will give him a power like any other. Glass Fleet is a Sci- Fi adventure where secrets can destroy galaxies.

Critical Evaluation:
I will have to admit that I am absolutely in love with this anime because the art and the animation are absolutely spectacular. Rather then utilizing conventional illustrations, the character detail is spectacular and the fighting sequences are amazing. Although I was not expecting romance in this story, I was crushed that Michel and Cleo could not live happily every after. Although some critics have not given favorable reviews on the plot and writing, this story contains situations that are very deep and somewhat disturbing, which serves as a warning that this anime is not at all suitable for teens under 16. Vetti, the main villain, was molested by his adopted father and, after years of abuse, seduced his adopted mother to murder his mother. Vetti, like many victims of sexual abuse, will either succumb to the abuse or react. In his case, he plotted and murdered his way into power because if there is one thing he can control is his lust for power. I am not quite sure if Vetti is gay, but he is fixated mostly on males and his closest companion is a young boy named Ralph. However, there is an episode where he drugs Michel, or Racine Blanche, and overpowers her (he rapes her) and discards of her. Again, Vetti will do anything and everything to gain power, which contributes to the madness of his wife, Rachel, the daughter of the Pope. This is yet another complexity of the story, which may confuse viewers, but it's all part of a story that will make sense towards the end. Cleo, unlike Vetti, was raised by man who not only cared for him, but made him the impeccable warrior that he is. Cleo is definitely a mystery that no one really knows and then he met Michel. Little by little, he opens himself up to her and the times they spend together fortifies their bond. As for Michel, she is yet another complex character. She is not only an aristocrat, she has lived her life as her brother, who not only taught her to fight, but loved her unconditionally. Although she could have done the job just as well, as Racine, she feels guilty; as a woman she could not fight alongside her brother so his death has been haunting her. However, with Cleo, she not only begins to feel like herself, she falls in love as well. Cleo, who has always been a loner, finally learns that he can be loved and love in return. Although the romance is just one of the many facets of this story, it definitely has the ability to draw in both male and female crowds. The ending will definitely provide one hell of a plot twist, but it is worth the wait.

Information about the Author:
According to Wikipedia:
Mainly, Yonemura works on screenplays for anime. After having graduated from Tokyo Zokei University, he worked as a freelance writer in Arakawa and would attend various film festivals. Then, he studied with  and proceeded to win the Otomo Shoji Award seven times and became a screenwriter.
Okama (born May 25, 1974) is a Japanese manga artist and illustrator. He is known as the artist of Cloth Road as well as the original character designer for Himawari and Glass no Kantai. He was also involved in Gunbuster 2, most noticeably in the ending design.

Currently, Okama is involved in a multitude of works and projects, including the serialization of Cloth Road, association with several animation projects, illustration for various magazines, as well as minor dōjin activities. His most recent work was with the video game No More Heroes as costume designer and artist for the fictional anime 'Bizarre Jelly' featured in the game. Okama is also the illustrator of Vocaloid Nekomura Iroha. Okama also means a transvestite or homosexual. The artist's explanation for his name is that he always plays female characters in online games.

Teen Anime

Ages 16 & up

Number of Episodes:
26 episodes

Anime Similar to Glass Fleet:

Awards & Recognition:
"In the end, Glass Fleet tends to suffer from having too many stupid people milling about in control of massive fleets, weapons and soldiers. At this point I'm tempted to believe those stupid people may be the creative staff as this is looking like the first stages of a serious train wreck." — Chris Beveridge, Mania.
"Glass Fleet is the anime fans of Last Exile have been waiting for. Suspenseful, fantastic animation, and a bevy of intriguing characters, this is an involving sci-fi drama series filled with action, mystery, and the thrilling journey of a young noble in search of justice." — Holly Ellingwood, activeAnime.

"Glass Fleet is off to quite a start. The show has great pacing and exhilarating inter-stellar battles. This volume ends on quite a cliffhanger, and one would hope that Cleo will figure out Michel's secret sooner or later." — Jeffrey Harris, IGN.

"Gonzo and co-producer Satelight have a great-looking piece of work here, but the story lacks a consistent tone and tries to do (and be) too many different things. The first volume shows potential but has yet to realize it." — Theron Martin, Anime News Network.

 "If you like politically charged sci-fi on an epic scale—along with sassy teen pilots in slinky lingerie, boozing pirates sporting eyepatches and a strong undercurrent of swirling ambisexual possibilities—Glass Fleet is definitely your show." — Jack Wiedrick, Newtype USA.

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Deborah Takahashi
Pasadena, CA, United States
My name is Deb and I am a Librarian who absolutely loves to read and recommend books to teen and tween readers. In this blog, you will find reviews on a variety resources ranging from books, movies, video games, and much more. Please feel free to leave any feedback, especially book recommendations!
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