Length: 9 episodes Score: Weirdly good.
All her life, Yumemi has seen something nobody else can: giant islands floating through the sky. Her friends politely think she’s nuts, until one day parts of the islands above start to fall to earth, causing destruction and earthquakes. Yumemi is contacted in her dreams by an inhabitant of the upper world, a man called Munto, who tells her that she alone has the power to prevent the Heavens from falling, bringing the end of both worlds.
This is a very strange series, not just because of the record-breaking long name, but also because the two parts of it running side by side are at complete odds. On the one hand you have a subtle slice-of-Japanese-life tale of Yumemi and her friends, as she copes with being certain of something she can’t ever prove. On the other is a world at war, where insanely powerful, near-immortal beings fight massive flying battles with huge energy bolts and so on. Even the drawing style of the two is different.
The upper world, though separated, has lived alongside our own for longer than our civilisation. But for all that time the resource that sustains both their lives and the land they walk on has been diminishing. That resource is abundant in our own world, but existing here is poison to those who live there. As it fades away, the upper world is decaying, and as the land falls away desperate countries go to war. WHen it comes to light that Yumemi has the capacity to create this resource, not everybody agrees on asking for it nicely.
What Yumemi learns is that the upper world has a dark history, that in the past they caused destruction for the lower world, for other worlds, and ultimately for themselves. Munto tells her this, and asks her if their world is truly worth saving. Sadly, she spends much of the series being a bit wet about it.
The stuff I describe above is mostly about the active half of the story, but the quiet slice of life half is still there, and adding to Yumemi’s depth – it’s just hard to describe because very little really happens.
All told, this series is an interesting experiment. It’s true that there are things about it that don’t quite work, but I was glad to see them trying.