Fractale is a 2011 science fiction anime series. Set in a future thousands of years from our own time where a satellite controlled virtual reality/computer system known as Fractale provides for everyone’s needs. Most people in this universe instead of interacting in person, send out virtual versions of themselves known as “doppels.” Doppels can interact in person with each other, but can not physically touch anything except for other virtual things. All people have computer chips implanted in them to allow them to see these virtual world around them as long as they are within range of the Fractale system. The system has “ensured humanity’s stability and peace.”
The Fractale system, in this world, is worshiped. It is managed by a cult including Fractale priests and priestesses. Daily, Fractale will send out an internal requirement to have people look at the “day star” where the Fractale system will read their thoughts, needs, and other physiological details.
The main characters are Phryne, a Fractale priestess who has a role to play in it’s operation; Clain, a teenage boy who prefers the physical to the virtual including 21st century “antiques;” and Nessa, a doppel who can physically be touched. We also meet a number of additional characters including some anti-Fractale organizations (Lost Millennium) and those who have embraced hedonism through Fractale.
In this show, we see two gods for the people. We see people worshiping Fractale and people worshiping themselves. Both are wrong.
Fractale is a man-made item and the Bible is clear – do not worship created things (Exodus 20:4-5). When you make something you can worship, it’s an idol (1 Chronicles 16:26). These false gods did not create the universe. These false gods, including Fractale, cannot create something out of nothing. Fractale creates the virtual gifts to allow for virtual social interaction creating a sense of peace. But, as you see in the series – this is a fleeting sense of peace. Without the chips implanted in one’s body, the people who have grown to depend on and worship Fractale become powerless, rudderless, confused, and lost. When they’re too far away from the signals, the Fractale system can not provide for the people. Fractale has physical limits. God is limitless (Jeremiah 32:17, Isaiah 40:28, Revelation 1:8). There is no too far away from the Lord (Joshua 1:9, Psalm 46:1).
The other situation we see is self-reliance to the point where the people are worshiping themselves. Arrogance is not a virtue (1 Samuel 2:3). Thinking highly of yourself is criticized over and over in the Bible (Proverbs 16:5, Proverbs 26:12, Romans 12:3). We see this in most of the characters who reject Fractale. Instead of an awe of the world around them, awe of the creation which they had no part in – they become proud, thinking they can do anything. They think they are invincible, all powerful. We see it int he villains who believe their authority can not be stopped. We see it in the heroes as Clain and the Lost Millennium members as they trust more in themselves.
In this dystopian future, the church no longer seems to exist. But even without the church, the world cries out that God exists (Psalm 19:1-4, Romans 1:20). People have no excuse for not seeking God. Even in this dystopian future.
We are in a lucky time. We have the word of God. We have the church. We have all this access to the truth of Christ, unlike the characters in Fractale who are trapped in a world where technology or self is worshiped.
I’m on episode 8 of the series and looking forward to seeing how this 11 episode series ends. It’s been a fascinating look at a world where reliance on technology leads to worship of technology. It also shows a world not that far from our own in the sense that people chose not to interact with each other in person, but instead virtually. It’s a sad statement on reality how relatable that aspect of the show truly is.
There are some more mature themes in the series. I would recommend it. That said, I would not watch it with younger viewers.