(26 well-paced episodes of sheer emotional stress)
i think that this time i'm right in saying that this has got to be one of the badly underrated shows ever. so much that because this show is really very good, people (anime fans especially) should know about this, but like i said, only a handful seem to only be aware of this wonderful series.
this anime takes the cake, the pie, the trophy, the prize, hell even the kitchen sink on character development. you get really really immersed into the story and get yourself involved (i was literally screaming at the monitor) and feel for the characters. when i was watching it (i only finished it last night) i was so concerned for their plight and what happens to the story.
Infinite Ryvius is like William Golding's "Lord of the Flies" in space. for those unfamiliar with the critically acclaimed book, it's about kids (students i think) left to their own devices with no adults left (they all perished) to supervise them after they got stranded on an island. IR takes place on a mysterious spaceship after they abandoned a disintegrating space academy. i really appreciate how this series mirrors society and how it shows anarchy and chaos. IR is beautiful for all the different character interaction and the relationships between each character. i also think it has one of the most satisfying romances too, the way the love between two certain characters blossomed and how it held out against threatening elements was beautiful to watch. IR also offers what i think to be some of the best characters in the whole of animedom: Airs Blue and Neya to top them. and it's funny cos this Blue guy was someone i expected more to hate in the beginning but then really grew to like in the end (it was more like, it was a "relief" that he was around). Neya was a big relief too.
the character designs are familiar, they're by Hisashi Hirai who also did Scryed, Gundam SEED, Gundam SEED Destiny and Sokyuu no Fafner. i actually think the Gundam SEED series borrowed some concepts from this series.