Monday, June 22, 2015

Freezing Review

Freezing Review

Warning: The following review may contain spoilers of the first season of Freezing. If you wish not to know some events in the story, or simply don't wish to find out what happens in the series, please leave the page, since I don't want to damage a watching experience for you.

With that said, thank you, and onto the review:

Fanservice in 2015 for me has been pothole after pothole. The Testament of Sister New Devil lost me after 1 episode, and later disgusted me when I found out what would happen in future episodes (Seriously! This show is close to hentai levels!). Highschool DXD New also disappointed me after 6 episodes, especially with all of the inner harem fights and some unnecessary fanservice. However, Senran Kagura actually managed to be more enjoyable with some funny English script lines and some great characters.

Freezing is another one of those fanservice shows. I first heard about this show back in 2012. I'm not exactly sure where and when I found out about it, but it interested me at first glance. I also had further encouragement from ShadowACS's review that I saw about a year ago, So, why did it take so long for me to watch this show? Blame other shows, and me waiting until I found this on Netflix XD.

So now that I've finally watched it, are you ready to hear what I thought about it? I thought this series was pretty good.

This show not only had some great main characters, but this definitely had one of my favorite story ideas. It did take a while for the main threat of the show to take place besides cat fights between Satellizer and some students, but those still were pretty good. Well, at least most of them. I also loved the score, and liked the animation.

A couple episodes weren't as good as the others, and this show started on a poor note. Also, the majority of the fights in this show have an all too similar pattern to one another. Combine that with some pointless fanservice and some moments in this show, and it did degrade it a little bit. Besides, a fanservice show isn't going to strike gold for everyone.

But as a whole, I'm surprised by how much I liked this show. It had a lot of good aspects of it, and I'm happy that I finally buckled down and watched it.

Let's move on to our story:


Get ready guys, because I'm about to drop a pure info-dump on you. Stand at attention!

Currently, we're in the year of 2065, and humans are at war with an alien race called Nova, which has been going on for quite some time. Humans have been trained to fight these creatures with the help of powered Stigmata that are implanted into them. This helps with summoning weapons and great fighting skills. This is especially true with the girl fighters, who are known as Pandoras.

One of the main problems with fighting the Nova is that they freeze time around them when they appear. To help combat this, a Pandora must eventually acquire a male in their second year with implanted Stigmata known as a Limiter, who is able to create Freezing areas to limit the Nova's movement. This Limiter must be a first year or younger than the Pandora, and they must go through a baptism in order to officially sync with each other with an Ereinbar Set.

Oh, and by baptism, I do mean sex. Because sex helps everything with deals and what not. What fun!

And by now, the information seems like this:

But you should feel that way. Besides the baptism part of the equation, almost everything is dumped on you within the anime's first episode. It does take a few re-watches in order to fully get it, but I knew a little bit about the show before I went into it, and that didn't really help me. I thought my head was spinning just taking this all in for the first time. There's a reason why the premiere episode is my least favorite, and it's because of this info-dump.

Regardless, back to the main story. Kazuya Aoi, the younger brother of a famous Pandora who sacrificed her life in the 8th Nova Clash 5 years prior, is now going to attend West Genetics Academy, a famous school for training these young Pandoras and Limiters. While getting around the school by the student council president,  the tour is interrupted by a fight between Satellizer el Bridget and Ganessa Roland. It's for a Carnival or whatever to decide rankings, but you won't care. I sure didn't. But back to the point.

During the fight, Kazuya mistakes Satellizer for his sister, and interrupts the fight by hugging her from behind. Knowing the rumors about her being the Untouchable Queen and knowing she might beat him to a pulp even though it was on accident, Chiffon (the student council president) and Ticy (the student council vice-president) worry about his safety. However, Satellizer reacts more timidly to the surprise of both of them. It still doesn't matter in the end, as Satellizer loses the fight, and is no longer the top-ranked Pandora out of the second years.

Despite constant warnings from new friends and others around him, Kazuya still insists to partner up with Satellizer. After several more fights with other Pandora who either are asked to fight her or just provoke her anyway, Satellizer begins to accept Kazuya more, and soon agrees with being his Limiter. 

Of course, this is after the fact that we find out Kazuya has 20 Stigmata placed inside him, and he can create Freezing areas without the Ereinbar Set.

Almost halfway through the show, a new girl appears at West Genetics named Rana Linchen, who according to her country's legend, will find the man of her destiny at the school. This man turns out to be Kazuya. A rivalry between Rana and Satellizer is put to the test by some third years, but what will happen when 4 Novas descend onto Earth in the 9th and 10th Nova Clashes?

Okay, first off, it's interesting to see a fanservice series with some science fiction elements. Though this series does focus more on the build-up of Kazuya and Satellizer's friendship (and later a bit of romance), I still think the final few episodes where 4 Nova attack Earth are rather interesting. We get to find out how the Nova operate, and it's interesting to see when even some of the higher ups didn't see some things coming.

Meanwhile, the first half is actually very entertaining at most parts with some intense fights along with some good opponents, and there was only 2 fights I disliked, which were in Episodes 3 and 5. the latter until Rana stepped in. Besides that, the rest of the fights are very good. Unfortunately, they all suffer from the same formula.

The formula goes like this: Satellizer is challenged to a fight, the other Pandora and her duel for a bit, Satellizer gets her ass whooped, something happens that allows Satellizer to get up and continue fighting, other Pandora gets her ass whooped, the end.

Episode 5 at least didn't have Satellizer fighting. Instead, it was between a group of 3 second years and 2 of Kazuya's classmates, but this formula stays the same throughout the fights between other women. It gets very repetitive, and once it got in the way of enjoying the fight that was going on. I'm looking at you, Miyabi.

My favorite fight would have to be the 2 on 2 fight with Satellizer and Rana vs. Arnett and Creo. We got to see a glimpse of Satellizer's past, along with seeing Arnett and Creo getting pwned. The fight was just intense overall, and was incredibly fun to watch.

The clash with the Nova is also very good, though I did have some minor issues with it. I think that mainly has to do with what happens in Episode 12, but I shouldn't spoil that, because that would be too much. ;)

Overall though, I enjoyed the story of this series, and I'm excited to see what happens next, though I do know some major plot points.


Not all of the characters in Freezing are masterpieces worthy of being framed in your bedroom. A select few aren't really unique in terms of personality, or in character for that matter. However, that still doesn't mean I can't talk about any. We're going to talk about the 3 leads, along with some of my favorite/one meh side character/s.

We're going to start off with our male lead, Kazuya:

Let me get this out of the way first, since it's going to stay in my head unless otherwise:

Yeah, Kazuya suffers from some of the same tropes that other generic main male characters suffer from in nearly a billion animes these days. He has a washboard personality, a very boring look, wishes to protect someone, and has a special ability other people don't.

In this case, Kazuya is able to cast Freezing areas, even without baptism. He even has 20 stigmata placed inside him, much like his sister. I wonder if the Aoi family line is just lucky that way? Either way, he doesn't have to have sex with a Pandora in order to complete the contract.

Like other shows I've seen, Kazuya has at least one trait that doesn't make him as stereotypical as the most cardboard protagonists out there. Like Issei with his perverted nature, Kazuya has his determination towards Satellizer. It mainly has to deal with him first getting to apologize to her for interrupting the fight between her and Ganessa, and then later with asking to be her Limiter. He isn't a strong character, but he's better than say Shido from Date A Live, Basara from The Testament of Sister New Devil, and Arata from Trinity Seven.

Satellizer's turn:

I'm pretty sure this screenshot is from Season 2, but it's too dang cute. There's a reason why I used this for her picture in the Cycle 9 fadeout of my ANTM. XD

Satellizer is known as the Untouchable Queen, as mentioned earlier. Despite being quite ruthless in battle against others, Satellizer actually has a different personality in private. While talking to Kazuya or just in her daily life, Satellizer is a more shy girl, who's very sensitive, gentle, kind, and protective of her belongings, such as her diary. This benefits Satellizer in the long run, as the more you think about her, the more you see that she's mainly kind-hearted and good in nature that around the 1,000th time Arthur and Hiiragi tell Kazuya about how dangerous she is, you just tune them out.

In the 6th episode, I was like, "Blah blah. I get it already. Satellizer's dangerous. But how does this show how powerful and evil she is? Hmm?

"See? What I'd tell you?"

Of course, it's not as if they saw this, but Kazuya sees a side to her that the majority of the walking student and teacher population does not. This causes her to probably be my favorite character from the anime, due to her complex personality and how well developed she is. She even gets to trust Kazuya so much, she eventually brings her doors down and considers performing the Baptism, which hasn't happened yet. Maybe at the end of the manga it will. Just a thought.

The reason why Satellizer hates being touched has to do with events that happened in her childhood. After moving into the El Bridget manor at 9 years of age, she is treated badly and is sexually abused by one of Olivia el Bridget's kids, Luis. At first, I thought that Luis was actually older than Satellizer, and then I saw the episode. It was there I found out that he was a year younger than her, since he was 8 years old when she moved into the mansion.

Yeah, knowing the Luis is a year younger and has that much power over Satellizer is kind of creepy. And since we're going to see him again in Season 2 all grown up, it's going to be so wonderful. I just know it! *sarcasm*

Because of Luis's words that she will be kicked out of the house if she blabs, Satellizer stays silent, only telling about him to her mother once. Her mother is battling a terminal sickness, and has to stay at the mansion in order to receive proper medical care. When Violet, the older sister, discovers of Luis's mistreatment and further abuse towards Satellizer, she advises her to leave the house for a while for her own safety. Before she leaves, her mother passes away, leaving her with final words that tell to become stronger and never lose. This results in Satellizer's current battle attitude. Even if she gets knocked down and hit constantly, she never plans on giving up unless her opponent loses, or unless she has to herself.

For her abilities, Satellizer posses the Volt Weapon known as Nova Blood, and 6 Stigmatas, with some coming from Kazuha Aoi, Kazuya's older sister. She is also able to apply skills that are only taught to the third years, such as Acceleration.

Overall, it's pretty obvious that I love Satellizer. Not only is she strong, but she has a sad backstory that makes you sympathize with her, a great complex personality, and a devotion to Kazuya later on down the road. She's a great female lead, and is one of my favorite characters of this year.

Rana's section is ready to start:

Rana is a transfer student and a Pandora from Tibet, and transfer to West Genetics to learn more about her Pandora abilities, and to find a man. Though her age is unknown, she enters as a part of the second years. She has 6 Stigmata, which are known in her town as Kunlun's Tears. After Kazuya is kind to her after they encounter, and when her Stigmata react after feeling his energy, she declares him to be the man of her destiny.

Pretty soon, she and Satellizer form a rivalry over Kazuya, but I've seen worse in Highschool DXD. Shortly after transferring, she is tricked by Attia, a third year student, into thinking that Satellizer is only using Kazuya for his ability, and fights against her until they are interrupted by Kazuya. Then, the third year fight boots up.

After Kazuya makes it clear that Satellizer is his partner, she still hopes to convince him some day down the line to team up with her, and still has a rivalry with Satellizer. Her Volt Weapon is Four Mindsets, which hardens her gloves and boots, and can also allow her to use Hallowed Gate Baiji Quan. This is a fighting style where her Stigmata energy allows her to use powerful techniques.

Some reviews that I've read think Rana is annoying and just added for the purpose of a love triangle, but I don't think that's completely the case. She does get a little irritating when she keeps throwing herself at Kazuya, but at least she and Satellizer can patch that aside and get serious when battle comes. I also liked her charm and how mysteriously powerful she was.

Ganessa needs to get into the spotlight now:

Known as the Angel of Binding, Ganessa is currently the top ranked Pandora after beating Satellizer in the Carnival. She is sassy, bashful, arrogant, and rude to a fault. She can be easily angered and sometimes, it can easily go to her head. After challenging Satellizer to yet another duel in Episode 2, she gets her butt kicked and is thrown aside for a few episodes. She makes a reappearance in some episodes, but fully returns in the last few episodes, where she help guard the Holy Remains and nearly dies when she sacrifices herself to defend Satellizer against Nova Cathy. 

Her Volt Weapon, Chains of Binding, is attached to her back and is able to make someone immobile by tying them up. She can also attack with all of them simultaneously, and manipulate their movements.

Overall, I think I liked Ganessa's personality more than I liked her as a character. It's been a while since I've seen such a sassy character in an anime, and Ganessa is actually quite funny. She does have her kind moments, such as trying to protect Satellizer, but she's mainly all attitude with no filters. She's great to watch on screen.

Now, let's talk about a side character who appears in the last few episodes, Cathy:

Cathy Lockharte is the top ranked third year Pandora at East Genetics, and is also another recipient of some of Kazuha's Stigmata. She is most known for mastering Quadruple Acceleration, and for being possibly the most powerful Pandora at her school. However, Cathy prefers to have a quieter life after graduation, and plans to become a novelist. 

In her own opinion, Cathy feels to be undeserving of being a strong Pandora after encountering Satellizer when she was attending East Genetics, where she greatly injured a male student for trying to touch her. When she fought her, she felt herself to be very weak compared to Satellizer's determination to not give up, no matter how many times she was hit.

During the 9th Nova Clash, she and other students are absorbed by a Nova, and are transformed into Nova Form Pandoras, who then attack West Genetics. She gets defeated by Satellizer after battling her in Nova From, when Satellizer achieves it herself. She is asked to be killed, but Kazuya helps Satellizer to snap out of Nova Form. When Cathy asks about this, Satellizer tells her about the promise Kazuya made when she visited the school, as he promised to be one of the first readers of Cathy's book if she wrote one. After the intense battle, she decides to become a member of Chevalier after graduation, and squeeze in writing on the side. Her Volt Weapon is Halcyon, which are a pair of blades.

I really liked Cathy. After seeing her first in a Season 2 clip, I wasn't sure what to expect from her. I had no clue she was in the top ranks at her school, and it was nice meeting her. It was a shame that she got absorbed into the Nova at the end of Episode 9, as I wanted to know a little more about her besides what we got, but it's going to be fun seeing her back next season.

Last but not least, Attia:

Attia is a third year student, and the head bitch in command of the third years. Well, there's someone higher up, but still, head bitch. She has a very villainous personality, and easily tricks Rana into fighting Satellizer. From there, she realizes that they are both more powerful than she originally thought, and decides to have Arnett and Creo go up against them. When Elizabeth Mably, the 2nd ranked third year and leader of the group, decides that the 2 girls are too powerful to face against, Attia still decides to have a little bit of revenge. So when Satellizer wins Pandora Queen, she advises some random background Pandora to put her in a very skimpy coronation outfit.

Even thought Episode 8 is one of my least favorites of Freezing, I think that's where Attia gets a little bit of chance to shine. Even though she is incredibly bitchy, I honestly found it entertaining when she got mad over Satellizer and Rana's bigger breasts XD. That made me crack up. She kind of reminds me of the head popular girl in a Webkinz series that I just started.

Other characters include Arthur and (Kaho) Hiiragi, 2 members of Kazuya's class who become friends with Kazuya, a trio of second years who only appear twice in the show, other third year Pandora, with my favorites being Chiffon and Ingrid, the principal of West Genetics, 2 teachers at West Genetics who participated in the 8th Nova Clash, Kazuha Aoi, a friend of Ingrid's who passed away, leading to her obsession with order, Cassie's best friend, and various members of the el Bridget family, including Luis and Violet.


The animation for this series was produced by A.C.G.T., who are also known for shows such as Seven of Seven, Koi Kaze, and Wangan Midnight.

This studio isn't widely known, but Freezing is one of the shows that you wouldn't expect them to animate from looking at what they've done. Overall, the animation for this series is pretty good. The action scenes are nicely done, there are some good fanservice moments, the characters look nice, and the eyecatchers all look sleek and polished.

I think one of the more weird things that happen in fanservice shows is when I notice something. And this something is a little perverted. But I keep on thinking, "How come these girls' nipples always seem to look hard?" and this bugs me. Forget that most shows don't even bother animating nipples on males, but in most fanservice shows I've seen, they always look this way. I mostly compare them to thumbtacks, because it's that creepy. And as for the pointless fanservice I mentioned earlier, that mainly appears with how almost every single girl will at least get the top half of their outfit torn off during a battle, which gets irritating after seeing it so many times.

Now on to something I looked at with the help of a friend. Freezing aired uncensored on a subscription channel, and censored on other channels. FUNimation streamed the censored version, so me and my friend decided to look at some scenes to see how the censoring worked.

Oh geez, I feel so bad for the people who saw this censored in Japan or from FUNimation. Because the censoring is just so bad, it becomes laughable. In some cases, it's fine, but in others, they overdo it to the point where it starts becoming ridiculous. They mainly censor out blood, deep impression panty shots, and frontal nudity. Though unlike Highschool DXD from what I've looked at, this looks so off compared to it.

I'm going to show you some examples that my friend helped take since I can't see the episodes myself on Youtube, though one was taken off my laptop. First up, from Episode 1 between Satellizer and the 3 second year girls:

This is after Satellizer stabs Audrey in the neck. Now here it is censored:

LOL YOU CAN BARELY SEE HER! OH GEEZ, THIS IS HYSTERICAL! I would probably censor out her neck, but censoring out the entire area? Yeesh, that's a little excessive.

Episode 1's eyecatcher:

Again, this is WAY too much. I'd say censor out the lower part of Satellizer's panties if some viewers are interested in reading the text, but don't cover the whole area.

Now for another blood censor from Episode 7:

Block out half of the entire screen, why would you? XD I get that it's a stream of blood, but I think censoring where it's coming from would be a little better.

And now, onto the funniest censor I've seen from Episode 1:

If anyone is wondering why Ganessa's uniform is torn, she's currently fighting with Satellizer. 

Now, are you ready? Unveil the masterpiece:

Maybe you could remove the censor after she covers her breasts?  And not keep it on? *sighs*

I do have to admit that I did prefer watching a scene in Episode 3 where Miyabi gropes Satellizer censored, as I got super uncomfortable watching it uncensored. I don't know what it is, but why do some fanservice shows add a hint of yuri into a show? I don't think it makes any other sense other than scream to the fans to buy it. It seems like it's added more for money these days rather than for character purposes. Either way, if I want to watch the censored version, I'd mainly do it for the giggles.

Beyond that though, we have some solid animation here, and I hope it gets better in Season 2. It sure looks to be that way.


The score for this series was composed by Masaru Yokoyama, who has also known for contributing to Your Lie in April, Unbreakable Machine Doll, and Yamada-kun and the 7 Witches.

While Madan no Ou to Vanadis's score was underwhelming and a bit boring, and Unbreakable Machine Doll was more memorable, I think that Freezing is my favorite score from Masaru so far, along with Yamada-kun. There's a lot of interesting pieces and elements used in some of the tracks, and I really liked most of them. I especially loved the majority of the dramatic pieces.

I'm going to link some of my favorite pieces here:

(Eyecatcher music has got me obsessed. XD)

I haven't talked about anime openings or endings for a while in my reviews, so I have to bring Freezing's ending up. So one night I was pretty bored, so I decided to look up some songs to listen to. Since I was planning to watch Freezing in the next week or so at the time, I decided to listen to the show's ending, since I listened to the opening several times. Let's just say I got hooked on it very quick, because it's been 3 weeks at the time of this review, and I'm still listening to it quite often. XD It's always like this for me and songs that attach to me after the first listen. You listen to them on repeat for several days afterward. 

I'm going to leave a link here so some of you can listen to it. Will it be good or bad for you I wonder:

Onto audio wise, both Japanese and English manage to be near equal for me. Though there are some awkward moments in the English dub such as screams and fighting sounds mainly, the dub still has some great voice work and moments from what I've seen so far. I honestly prefer the Japanese version a bit more, since I feel like the acting's slightly better. Also, I noticed in this show that Mamiko Noto and Saori Hayami manage to sound somewhat similar to each other, even though they're completely separate characters in different shows (Yamada-kun comparisons again, as Saori Hayami is in that show as Shiraishi).

Highlights in the original Japanese are Mitsuhiro Ichiki, Mamiko Noto, Kana Hanazawa, Eri Kitamura (who is also in Yamada-kun, and sounds pretty much like Nene, except younger), Nobuhiko Okamoto, Rie Yamaguchi, Marina Inoue, Aya Uchida, Ami Koshimizu, Yu Asakawa (she sounds freaking different here), Izumi Kitta, Rie Kugimiya, Asami Sanada, Ai Kayano, and Atsushi Ono, 

Highlights so far in the English dub include Josh Grelle, Caitin Glass, Jamie Marchi, Luci Christian, Alexis Tipton, Ceelee Rose (Cherami Leigh), Abigail Hartmen (Tia Ballard) as both of her characters, Monica Rial, Jad Saxton, Liza Gonzales, Dusty Jacks (confirmed to be Wendy Welch from her resume), Carmen Smith (Colleen Clinkenbeard), Catherine DuBord, Kristi Kang, Lara Woodhull, and Lindsay Seidel.


This was another surprisingly good fanservice series. I'm glad that I'm managing to like the majority of these types of shows that I decide to watch, because not all fanservice shows are going to be like this. But I'm going to add this into the fanservice shows that worked well for me for sure.

If you're a fan of romance with some fanservice and sci-fi mixed into it, I'm sure you're going to like this series. I'm excited for Season 2, though I have heard that it isn't that good compared to the first season. Oh well, I'll have to wait and see, now won't I?

Score: 8/10


Great story.

Good main cast of characters.

Solid animation.

Amazing score.

Nice in whatever you choose to watch (English or Japanese).

Most fights are entertaining.


If you want to see some of the Nova in action, you have to wait until Episode 9.

Side characters aren't as explored as main cast.

"Stay away from Satellizer" got old really fast.

Fights in the series are repetitive. 

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