Kōdo Giasu: Hangyaku no Rurūshu
- Code Geass: Lelouch of the Rebellion
- Season 1: 25 episodes
- by Gorō Taniguchi
It’s the year 2010 and the Holy Empire of Britannia is striving for being the most powerful military nation. They conquered Japan and renamed it to Area 11. Indeed, Japan is trying to resist the dominance of Britannia to regain their independence. A Britannia student named Lelouch Lamperouge accidentally got into a crossfire between Britannia and the rebels of Area 11. He is able to escape thanks to a mysterious girl named C.C. who gave him Geass, a power of absolute obedience. Lelouch uses this power to fight against Britannia under the name of Zero even though it means fighting against his best friend Suzaku Kururugi.
The anime series contain many interesting and thoughtful topics. Japan is invaded by Britannia which stole their identity where the ‘Elevens’ have no rights. Lelouch has a strong hatred against Britannia as they have killed his mother and awfully wounded his beloved sister (she is in a wheelchair and blind). However, he has the power to give people orders which they automatically follow without any hesitation. An interesting point is that you can see how the ownership of such a strong power can change your whole life. You even sacrifice your own family without giving it a second thought. An interesting fact is that a Japanese citizen (Suzaku) fights for Britannia whereas a Britannia citizen (Lelouch) fights against it. The series is also filled with many suspenses such as: What will Suzaku do if he finds out that his best friend is Zero? Will Zero alias Lelouch be able to reach his goal: Destroying Britannia?
We really like the concept of the series. The conquest or control of Japan by some other country can be related to the situation during and after WWII. Moreover, even the concept of having absolute power leading to fatal consequences is really interesting. You can also see how power changes people’s personality drastically. Having absolute power over other people leads to lack of empathy and the murder of family members.
Family issue is a strong topic in the anime. The ruler of Britannia is Lelouch’s family: his brother Colvis (SPOILER ALERT: who has been killed by him) and now his father were and are the leaders. In addition, even Lelouch’s sister Cornelia fights in the army and therefore against Zero. You can see that Lelouch struggles a lot being the son of such a family. He does everything to make his sister Nunnally happy again and so he wants to create a new world for her. Also Suzaku has family issues as he has lost his father a long time ago who was the last prime minister of Japan before it was taken over by Britannia.
Clearly, ‘Code Geass’ is filled with many high technology stuff such as robots and robot fights. They differ in their types and level of strength. For instance, Suzaku’s robot Lancelot has many special powers and is faster compared to all the others. We also like the label of the robots: ‘Knightmare’ because it is a combination of ‘Knight’ and ‘Nightmare’.
We really like the characters as they show many different personalities. You can understand their actions and decisions especially those of Lelouch and Suzaku. Both have the same goal but have different methods to reach it.
Lelouch Lamperouge (vi Britannia)
Lelouch is a high intelligent but also arrogant Britannia student. He likes to play chess which is also one of his strengths. As a student he is sociable but as Zero he is cold, selfish and ruthless. However he is a loyal friend to Suzaku and he does everything for Nunnally.
Suzaku is a Japanese citizen who fights on Britannia’s side. He has a strong sense of loyalty which makes him never questioning the actions of his superiors. He sees Zero’s actions as wrong because the latter only strives for his goals even though it means killing innocents.
The art of animation is very detailed especially the robots are very well drawn. Even the nature and environment scenes are really great. We like the destructive depiction of Area 11. However, the design of the characters is kept a bit simple but it is not bad, we liked it after all. The highlights are definitely the emotions as you can really feel with the characters. Moreover, the interesting fact about the music is that the opening theme changed 3 times during the anime. The opening and ending themes were not bad and totally fit in the anime.
All in all, ‘Code Geass’ is a mecha anime meaning that many robots are included. We have to say that it contains a bit too many robot fights but the story itself is really fascinating. Many great quotes are included such as: ‘The only ones who should kill, are those who are prepared to be killed.` – Lelouch. The ending is a cliffhanger and therefore it is very thrilling to watch the second season as you want to know how it continues. An interesting fact: Lelouch can be compared to Light (Death Note) as both want to change the world after having gained absolute power and control. Even the negative change in their personalities is quite similar as both stop at nothing.