[[caption-width-right:319:"I came here to fight."]]

In the world of Daikuuriku, everyone is born female, and [[GenderBender chooses which sex they wish to become]] at age 17 with a trip to a magical spring. In this world, the peaceful theocracy of Simulacrum is guarded by magical flying machines called "Simoun," which can only be piloted by young girls who haven't chosen a sex yet. The Simoun can activate a [[FunctionalMagic magical power]] known as "Ri Maajon" (by inscribing enormous magical glyphs in the sky) that can [[WaveMotionGun destroy large numbers of enemy aircraft at once]].

When the industrialized nation of Argentum decides that it needs to invade Simulacrum to acquire the secret of the Simoun, [[CaptainObvious war breaks out]], drawing the Simoun pilots into a lopsided battle. Because the war is raging, the Simoun pilots are granted an exemption from going to the spring for as long as they're willing to keep flying. One such pilot in particular vows to stay with her squadron until she [[MyKungFuIsStrongerThanYours becomes the ultimate]] Simoun pilot, and badgers her squadron-mates to do the same...

''Simoun'' aired from April to September 2006 on Japanese TV, with an all-star (and all-female) voice acting cast, and two stage actresses portraying the series' romantic leads. The series has recently been licensed, and the (subtitled only) [=DVDs=] are available in North America.

A serial manga of this series has been released in ''Magazine/YuriHime'', with a slightly altered storyline.

[[Anime/TengenToppaGurrenLagann No relation to anyone named "Simon" with his name pronounced "See-MOAN",]] nor to the antihero protagonist of ''Literature/ElFilibusterismo'', although that is his name (yes, including the U). Quite possibly related, however, to [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caudron_Simoun the 30s airplane]], which a [[Creator/AntoineDeSaintExupery certain French writer]] [[Literature/TheLittlePrince crashed into the Sahara desert]].
!!Provides examples of:

* TenMinuteRetirement: Subversion. Three characters actually stay retired, and one is shell shocked into inactivity for several episodes after coming back.
%%* TheAce:
%%** The Sibyllae as a whole [[spoiler:at first]].
%%** Neviril, until [[spoiler:Amuria dies]].
* AchillesInHisTent: Early on Neviril, later Dominura
* AirborneAircraftCarrier: Lots of 'em.
%%* AlienLunch: Episode 10.
* AlmostDeadGuy: Flying an almost dead Simoun.
* AlphaBitch: Mamina is a subversion. She acts like this at first (before her following CharacterDevelopment) despite the fact she's not rich, but poor.
%%* AnyoneCanDie
* AnimeAccentAbsence: When Plumbish priestesses speak in the language of Simulacrum, they sound exactly like native Simulacrans, with no traces of a foreign accent.
%%* AppliedPhlebotinum
* ArtEvolution: As the series continues, Wapourif's features become a bit rougher, and his chest shrinks. Possibly a justified use of the trope - Wapourif is one of the youngest male characters, and it's very probable that what we're seeing is the effects of the Spring as his body continues changing and becoming more masculine.
* ArcWords: ''Shin Tenchi e no Tobira'' ("The Door to the New World").
* AsLongAsItSoundsForeign: When Plumbish officials are shown to speak their own language, what is actually heard is Japanese phrases replayed backwards.
* AscendToAHigherPlaneOfExistence: [[spoiler:Aer, Neviril, Dominura, and Rimone in one sense; Onasia and possibly (eventually) Yun in another; Mamina and possibly Anglas in a third]].
* BabiesEverAfter: [[spoiler:Morinas and Wapourif have a child together, and Morinas is visibly pregnant with number 2 during the final episode. Wauf also has a fairly young kid in that same episode.]]
* BeautyMark: Morinas has one under her lip.
* BeliefMakesYouStupid: Averted. The only character who thinks this is also the only character who is truly and unremittingly evil. The idea that it is somehow a sign of weakness to have faith in someone or something greater than yourself is treated as highly sketchy and hubristic.
* BewareTheNiceOnes: Guragief, as demonstrated in the penultimate episode when he [[spoiler:knocks out a Plumbish soldier who was trying to prevent Aer and Neviril from escaping]]. Lampshaded by Anubituf.
* {{Bifauxnen}}: Paraietta.
* {{Bishonen}}: Wapourif, among others.
* BittersweetEnding: Definitely more sweet than bitter, especially given the [[spoiler:Plumbish authorities]]' HeelFaceTurn, but it's the [[WhoWantsToLiveForever little things]], you know?
* BlessedWithSuck: Not going to the Spring makes you immortal, but leaves you stuck in a TimeAbyss and unable to interact with anyone ever again.
* {{Bokukko}}:
** Yun, who actually says the much more masculine "ore" instead of "boku".
** Kaim plays this one straight.
%%* BrokenAce: Neviril.
%%* BrokenBird:
%%** Neviril.
%%** Dominura.
* BrotherSisterIncest: Sibling incest, at least. It isn't treated as some awful, disgusting taboo when brought up; what's important is how each party feels toward the other, not the act itself. Yet another testament to how things like gender barriers are downplayed in the world of Simoun.
%%* CallingYourAttacks
%%* CatchAFallingStar
* CharacterDevelopment:
** Mamina goes from the TokenEvilTeammate to a MessianicArchetype.
** Roatreamon goes from an ExtremeDoormat to TheHighQueen.
** ''Everyone'' gets a character development arc, remarkably for a cast of this size.
* CheerfulChild: Rimone.
* ChildProdigy: Rimone.
* ChristmasCake: Dominura is actually not one, as her [[http://simoun.tv/characters/09.html official profile]] lists her age as 19 years old. Talk about YoungerThanTheyLook. Still, in the context of the Simoun universe, she qualifies, as she still has yet to choose a gender.
* CombinedEnergyAttack: The Iron Ri Maajon, among others.
%%* TheComicallySerious: Yun.
%%* ConspicuousCG
%%* ConstructedWorld
* CoolShip: ''Arcus Prima'', actually a former luxury liner converted to ad-hoc aircraft carrier. Certainly one way around the foolishly expansive glass-encased rooms and lush accommodations often seen in anime. When they get transferred to the ''Messis'' after the ''Arcus Prima'' needs to be repaired, their quarters are much more spartan.
* CoversAlwaysLie: [[http://cdn3a.dvdempire.org/products/78/1613578h.jpg The front cover]] of the North American DVD release featured Neveril and Aer sort of... hugging? Dancing? Playing patty-cake? Whatever they are doing they are close together and naked, but somehow their embrace has no sexual overtones at all, so the whole thing just looks weird. Also, there is not a single Simoun visible on the front cover, back cover, or spine. The series is '''named''' ''Simoun'' and the machines are nowhere to be found. Without already knowing the background to the series there is no way to determine even what ''genre'' the show is, first guess would probably go to MagicalGirl or an {{Ecchi}} series.
%%* DeadStarWalking: [[spoiler:Amuria.]]
%%* DistantFinale
* TheDitz: Floe, with a bit of {{Jerkass}} too. Aer also has her moments.
* DramaticWind: Flight deck, episode 8; observation platform, episode 24.
* DudeLooksLikeALady: Pretty much anyone who has just chosen the male gender, as their sexual characteristics don't immediately alter. Notably, Wapourif still has very big breasts and wears his hair long.
%%* DuringTheWar
* {{Expy}}:
** Onasia is one of Ayesha, She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed, from Creator/HRiderHaggard's adventure novels.
** Aer bears a striking resemblance to Franchise/SailorMoon.
* FacelessMooks: The enemies of Simulacrum attack in [[ZergRush swarms]] and wear full-body pilot suits and helmets that obscure even the tiniest bit of flesh. This de-personalizes them not just to the audience, but to the Sibyllae as well. When Neveril looks into the eyes of an enemy pilot just before he is pulled into the Emerald Ri Majon, Amuria herself says that she will no longer be able to kill them once she has looked into their eyes.
* FanService:
** Kiss-powered airships, several kinds of skintight outfits.
** Dominura. [[PajamaCladHero In her nightgown.]] With [[MessyHair bed-head.]] This stuff writes itself.
* FashionableAsymmetry (one bare shoulder, illustrated above)
%%* FatBastard: The Defense Minister.
* FirstEpisodeSpoiler: [[spoiler:Amuria dies]], Aer arrives in Chor Tempest as a replacement, [[spoiler:and Neviril suffers a ''massive'' HeroicBSOD.]]
* ForgottenFallenFriend: One pair in particular in episode 1.
* FormFittingWardrobe: The anime keeps a prominent butt crack visible through skirts, dresses, and even baggy cargo pants. Though the Sybillae uniform strangely justifies it for breasts in one scene where Paraietta's top retains its shape after it's removed.
* FreedomFromChoice: A major theme. Choice (specifically the gender choice, but encapsulating other things as well) is the source of most of the main characters' internal conflict throughout the story not directly related to the war. The ''availability'' of choice is a good thing, but actually ''engaging'' in either/or decision-making erases other possibilities and hence, paradoxically, stunts potential, particularly spiritual potential. Characters sometimes attempt to go the traditional FreedomFromChoice route and submit to military, political, or social marching orders, but the only actual freedom lies in a particular kind of simultaneously static and "wavering" mindset.
%%* FunctionalMagic
* GainaxEnding: Definitely more sweet than bitter, but it's not clear exactly how and to what extent everything's been made right, where the Eternal Maidens are, and where Simulacrum is going as a country.
* {{Gainaxing}}: In one of the commentaries, the character designer admits to having drawn Paraietta as if she wasn't wearing a bra.
%%* GenderBender
* GenkiGirl: Aer.
* GirlPowered: The two female pilots must kiss each other and then the Simoun in order to [[{{Pun}} turn it on.]]
* GrowingUpSucks: The girls lose their ability to fly a Simoun once they have chosen their gender.
* HairColors: There's only one reused color among the whole cast.
* HamAndCheese: Mamina is this ''in-universe'', even after her CharacterDevelopment away from being the TokenEvilTeammate.
%%* HeelFaceTurn:
%%** Mamina.
%%** At the end, [[spoiler:the entire nation of Plumbum]].
%%* HeelFaithTurn: [[spoiler:The Plumbish government]].
%%* HeroicBSOD: Neviril after the events of the first episode.
%%* HeroicSacrifice: [[spoiler:Mamina]].
%%* HeroOfAnotherStory: Vura.
%%* HesBack: Neviril.
* HopelessWar: The series starts with the protagonists' nation easily fending off all comers through superior AppliedPhlebotinum... and then the neighbors start catching up.
* HugeSchoolgirl: Paraietta, despite being around the same age as the rest of the Sybillae (barring [[TokenMiniMoe Rimone]]) can stand almost eye-to-eye with [[ChristmasCake Dominura]].
%%* HumanAliens
* HumanOutsideAlienInside: Their reproductive cycle only results in female children.
%%* ImmigrantPatriotism: [[spoiler:Dominura.]]
%%* ImperialStormtrooperMarksmanshipAcademy
%%* ImportantHaircut:
%%** Roatreamon.
%%** Mamina.
%%* ImpossiblyCoolClothes
%%* IndustrializedEvil: Subverted.
%%* InnocuouslyImportantEpisode
* InsistentTerminology: "[[PunctuatedForEmphasis WE! ARE! NOT! AT! WAR!]] WE ARE ''PRAYING TO THE SKY!!!''"
* IntergenerationalFriendship: Possibly the ultimate example (and possibly [[GirlsLove more than a friendship]]): Yun is sixteen. [[spoiler:Onasia]] is a TimeAbyss.
* ItGetsEasier: Though the Sibyllae are originally very clear that they are priestesses, not soldiers, and that they are praying, not fighting, (See InsistentTerminology above), as the series progresses they stop "Offering prayers to Tempus Spatium" and begin "patrolling," and they stop "inscribing Ri Maajon" and begin "fighting." No one notices the transition as it happens, until one day it is pointed out that even the Sibyllae have begun to "fight." Needless to say, they do not take this realization well.
%%* JigsawPuzzlePlot
* KiAttacks: Or EnergyWeapons, or a mix of the two.
%%* KilledOffForReal: [[spoiler:Mamina]], among others.
* {{Kawaiiko}}: Rimone, who is really just a little kid.
%%* LensFlare
* LosingTheTeamSpirit: [[spoiler:Amuria's death]] is bad enough, but Neviril's subsequent HeroicBSOD leaves Chor Tempest in tatters.
%%* LostTechnology
%%* LoveDodecahedron
* MeaningfulName: ''Aer'' in Greek mythology refers to the air that mortals breathe, as opposed to the ''aether'' the gods breathe.
* MeddlingParents: Halconf.
* {{Meganekko}}: Kaim.
* MercyKill: [[spoiler: The Plumbum priestesses to Mamina]] and [[spoiler:Yun to Onasia.]]
%%* {{Miko}}: Most of the cast.
%%* MildlyMilitary
%%* MindScrew
* MissingManFormation: The Ri Maajon of the Fields.
%%* TheMole: More than one of them.
* MoralityKitchenSink: This is the show that gives us [[GoodShepherd Yun]], [[JerkWithAHeartOfGold Mamina]], [[AntiHero Paraietta]], [[TragicVillain the nations of Argentum]] [[AntiVillain and Plumbum]], and the Defence Minister of Simulacrum.
* TheMourningAfter: Neviril with regards to Amuria; [[spoiler:Roatreamon with regards to Mamina]].
* MrExposition: Guragief in episode 2, Wapourif in episode 3, Onasia and the High Priestess in episode 21.
%%* MrFixit: Wapourif.
* MysteriousParent: Actually, a mysterious grandparent: Aer's grandfather.
%%* NeverFoundTheBody: [[spoiler:Amuria]].
* NearRapeExperience: Almost done to Neviril by [[spoiler:Paraietta]].
%%* NoOneCouldSurviveThat: [[spoiler:Anglas]].
%%* NuclearWeaponsTaboo
* NumberTwo: Guragief on the ''Arcus Prima''. The ''Messis'' doesn't seem to have one.
%%* {{Odango}}: Aer.
%%* TheOjou: Roatreamon.
%%* OneeSama: Neviril.
* OnlyOneName: Namely in the anime. In the manga, Aer and Roatreamon get last names, but even then they're the only ones.
* OutDamnedSpot: Kaim during her ShowerOfAngst in Episode 12.
-->''"It's not coming off ..."''
%%* OutrunTheFireball
* PastelChalkedFreezeFrame: Several per episode.
* PhlebotinumOverload: The Emerald Ri Maajon out of control.
%%* PillarOfLight
* PollutedWasteland: Argentum.
* PromotionToOpeningTitles: Yun.
* RashomonStyle: Episode 12 in regards to [[spoiler:the sexual encounter between Kaim and Alty]]. Each of them claims that the other initiated the act.
* RaysFromHeaven:
** These are used frequently to indicate normal levels of peace and happiness, especially in flashbacks. It's needed when the series is not exactly cheerful.
** The Spring has these shining down, particularly [[NaturalSpotlight onto]] Onasia, making it look as magical as it is.
** [[spoiler:When Aer and Neviril goes back in time, they are seen descending from one.]]
* ReassignedToAntarctica: Chor Tempest's transfer from ''Arcus Prima'' to ''Messis''.
%%* RedemptionEqualsDeath
* RomanticTwoGirlFriendship: Roatreamon and Mamina are a textbook case. (Of course, as is common with the trope, many fans [[LesYay have their own interpretation]].)
* RummageSaleReject: The flight suits that the sibyllae wear.
%%* SayMyName: AA! E! RU!
%%* ShrinesAndTemples
%%* ShowerOfAngst: A few times.
* TheSkyIsAnOcean: And the ships have nautilus motif.
* SleazyPolitician: The other countries are nominally the antagonists, but the real BigBad is the Simulacran Defense Minister, an ObstructiveBureaucrat GeneralRipper HollywoodAtheist SleazyPolitician. He's such a bastard that we ''cheer'' when the peace treaty deposes half of the Simulacran government, because at least it's possible for [[SupportingLeader Anubituf]] to negotiate constructively with Plumbum.
%%* SlowMotionPassBy
* SnubByOmission: As mentioned under FunnyAneurysmMoment, when Chor Tempest gets asked to show a Plumbum priestess around their ship, they naturally start off with introductions, with the priestess repeating each name as she's told it... except [[SpellMyNameWithAnS Aer's]].
* SpellMyNameWithAnS: In spades. Aaeru/Aeru/Aer/Aelle, Rodoreamon/Lodreamon/Roatreamon, Angulas/Anguras/Angurasu, and more... It doesn't help that the fansubs kept most of the names in katakana and didn't bother to romanize them properly.
* SpoilerOpening: Aer and Neviril are shown to be a Pair in the opening, but it actually takes several episodes before Neviril accepts Aer as her Pair.
%%* TheSquad
* SteamPunk: The Argentum army.
* StableTimeLoop: [[spoiler:Two of the pilots find themselves transported back in time and wind up founding the tradition of flying Simoun.]]
* {{Stripperiffic}}: Stockings and exposed garter belts... worn by ''fighter pilots''. Luckily their cockpits are heated, during the fight in the blizzard at episode 5 Alty says "It must be pretty cold out there", but still...
* SuckingInLines: The Emerald Ri Maajon.
* SuicideAttack: Under the guise of a peace conference, a Plumbish priestess commits a suicide attack with something like an explosive belt to destory the Simouns.
* SupportingLeader: Anubituf.
* TeamMom: Yun, by the end.
* TeamDad: Technically Neviril, but Dominura fills in for her a lot.
* TeamSpirit: Kiss-powered airships, and the more powerful Ri Maajon effects require the coordinated action of several Simoun.
* TemporalParadox: One country intentionally ''tries'' to change history to avoid losing a war.
* ThanksForTheMammary: Subverted--it's not played for laughs. After Wapourif deconstructs a Simoun and Dominura [[GoMadFromTheRevelation sees whatever she does within it and goes nuts]] , Wapourif has a crisis of faith, leading to this little exchange between him and [[ShipTease Morinas]]. After regretting "touching something so holy", Morinas does this to him and storms off in a huff. [[spoiler: They make up later.]]
%%* ThereIsOnlyOneBed: [[spoiler:Rimone and Dominura in the past]].
* ThoseTwoGuys: Anubituf and Guragief, with a healthy bit of {{UST}} between them. [[WordOfGod In the Commentary]], the director mentioned that, when they where Sybillae, [[WordOfGay they both decided to end up together]], but when they went to The Spring, they both assumed that the other would be the woman.
%%* TimeAbyss: [[spoiler:Onasia]].
%%* TimeTravel
%%* TokenEvilTeammate: Mamina pre-CharacterDevelopment.
* TokenMiniMoe: Rimone. She is exempt from fanservice shots, although she still has to kiss her co-pilot. She doesn't mind though, which leads to [[Heartwarming/{{Anime}} very heartwarming interaction between her and Dominura]]
%%* TrueCompanions
%%* {{Twincest}}
* TwistedKneeCollapse: Mamina, at the end of episode 7.
* UnderdogsNeverLose: [[spoiler:Inverted. The enemy nations eventually manage to defeat the Simouns]].
%%* UnluckyChildhoodFriend: Paraietta.
* UnusualEuphemism: "Let's do a Ri Maajon." IsThatWhatTheyreCallingItNow
%%* WaveMotionGun
* WhatMeasureIsAMook: Amuria herself points out that, once you look an enemy in the eye (And thus recognize them as a person, instead of just "the enemy") it is suddenly a ''lot'' harder to kill them.
* WeHaveReserves: The enemies of Simulacrum have thousands, perhaps ''millions'', more planes than there are Simouns, but even in such lopsided battles they still suffer ''massive'' casualties. Their only viable option in the war is to keep replacing their slaughtered soldiers with fresh fodder as they slowly grind down the Simoun, which exist only in very limited numbers.
%%* WhamEpisode:
%%** Episode 8.
%%** Episode 14.
%%** Episode 16.
%%** Episode 17.
%%** Episode 19.
%%** Episode 21.
%%** Episode 26.
%%* WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue
* WillTheyOrWontThey: A great part of the series deals with the growing romance between Neviril and Aer. [[spoiler: They do.]]
%%* WrenchWench: Morinas.
%%* YaoiGuys: [[spoiler:Guragief and Anubituf.]]
%%* YuriGenre
* ZergRush: The predominant tactic of all enemies of Simulacrum. There is simply no way they can match the Simoun on a 1-to-1, or even 100-to-1, basis, so they throw ''thousands'' of their own fighters at them in the hopes of downing even one or two. Since [[WeHaveReserves they have reserves]], this becomes surprisingly (and disturbingly) effective.