The best anime series I've seen in years
neifirst | Los Angeles, CA | 12/07/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was introduced to this show long before it was licensed and after the first five episodes I was hooked. There is a bit of a knowledge hurdle getting into the series because there is a lot of information to digest about the social structure and the physics of the solar system, now altered from the one we know from real life by the Geduld Phenomenon.However this series strength is in the characters. Infinite Ryvius features an ensemble cast of potentially dozens as 487 students are stranded in the first few episodes of the series, however there are a main handful that the series focuses on and surprisingly every major character is given fair air time and no one ever feels neglected for a cast of this size. Even several of the minor characters show up often enough over the course of several episodes for viewers to get a feel for them and their personalities.Though there is action for those who must have their ship battles, this is more of a relationship-based series than a comabtive one. Each external conflict (the students vs. their unknown enemy) is significant and plays out over more than one episode, but the internal struggles between the students and within themselves are what drives the plot from story arc to story arc. All the cast members grow and change tremedously over the course of the series as they deal with the unusual circumstances into which they have been thrust. It's important to remember that unlike the teenagers in most sci-fi anime series, the cast of Infinite Ryvius are non-combatants and were never trained to fight for a military. This makes their predicament all the more painful for them to deal with, and there are none of the traditional heroes who come in and save the day.The first DVD is perhaps a bit slow because of all the foundations that must be laid and the rivalries between the different characters revealed, but the tension picks up in the second volume, and by that point I could no longer stop watching.I highly recommend this series for those tired of the typical sci-fi anime and are looking for something with a little more substance."