Anime / The Vision of Escaflowne

Hitomi Kanzaki is an Ordinary High-School Student who reads tarot cards and runs on her school's track team. One day, just as she's about to earn her Sacred First Kiss from her senpai and crush, a dragon appears in a Pillar of Light, closely pursued by a young armored warrior. The warrior, Prince Van, rescues Hitomi and her friends from the dragon, and takes a power source for his Humongous Mecha from the heart of the dead dragon. Another Pillar of Light then appears, whisking Hitomi and Van away to his world, Gaea, where Earth itself hangs in the night sky...

Once there, Hitomi and Van quickly become embroiled in a massive war. Van's kingdom of Fanelia is one of many at war with the sinister Zaibach Empire, whose Emperor Dornkirk seeks to use his probability-altering technology (and army of Schizo Tech Humongous Mecha known as "Guymelefs" —or "Melefs" for short) to conquer Gaea and create a world without uncertainty. The best chance to turn the tide of the war is the mighty Guymelef, the eponymous Escaflowne... which is also the biggest source of uncertainty in Dornkirk's vision of the future.

A brainchild of Shoji Kawamori, Tenkuu no Escaflowne (lit. "Escaflowne of the Heavens") was conceived during a trip to Nepal and pitched as Air Cavalry Chronicles, basically "Macross with divination instead of love songs". Planned as a 39-episode anime series from the start, it spent several years in Development Hell, during which a manga was published (based on pre-production materials and thus markedly different from the final product). The series was finally broadcast in Japan from April 2, 1996 to September 24, 1996, cut to just 26 episodes, which accounts for a rather abrupt wrap-up in the end. Two more mangas and a novelization were produced later, and the anime was licensed as The Vision of Escaflowne in the US. There was also a movie released in 2000, which greatly simplified the series' mythology and played up its mystical aspects.

Curiously, Fox Kids aired the dub of the show around 2000, largely in response to the anime boom at the time. Of course since the show was not exactly kid friendly, it had to be edited a bit. It never fully finished, only getting halfway before the TV broadcast was cancelled.

Thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign, Funimation is redubbing the series and movie with a brand new cast for their Blu-Ray releases in 2016.

Compare and contrast with Aura Battler Dunbine and Panzer World Galient, their predecessors in creating a Medieval European Fantasy setting and adding Humongous Mecha in the mix.

The Vision of Escaflowne provides examples of the following tropes:

Alternative Title(s): Vision Of Escaflowne, The Vision Of Escaflowne