Code Geass: Rue Britannia


Code Geass: Lelouch of the Revolution is the first series in quite a while that has left me at the edge of my seat after every episode. Indeed, it’s gotten to the point where I eagerly await every new installment, and curse the fact that the show only airs once a week in Japan.

But let’s start at the beginning. The Empire of Britannia, a nation dominated by a social Darwinist philosophy—complete with an aristocracy and imperial family—has conquered a third of the world, stripping fallen nations of their identities and replacing them with district numbers. The most recent addition to the empire is Sector 11, formerly known as Japan.

Enter Lelouch, native Brittanian and an amazingly intelligent student at an elite Brittanian high school in Sector 11. He is also a prince of Britannia’s imperial family, in exile and presumed dead by his family. Despite the seeming impossibility of the task, he has sworn to bring the empire crashing down and to create a world where people like his little sister—wounded in the terrorist attack that took the life of their mother—could live without fear.

To top off what is an interesting story in its own right, Code Geass boasts superlative artwork, with character designs by CLAMP, a rarity in series that aren’t adaptations of their own manga. The awesome soundtrack captures the mood of the show very nicely, with pulse-pounding action numbers interspersed between moody and classical fusion pieces. There is a great ending piece by Ali Project (of Kopellia no Hitsugi fame), and an intense and appropriate introduction by FLOW.

With an engaging plot and thoroughly fascinating characters, ranging from the brooding intellect of Lelouch to the high-minded idealism of his childhood friend Suzaku, Code Geass can reel in even the most cerebral of viewers. The frequent and well-executed action sequences, complete with mech-based combat and grand strategy, will keep the attention of the less academic.

Although only 11 episodes (and one recap episode) have been released in Japan as of the time of this article, this is one series that you should definitely track down.