Posted by psgels on 1 August 2011 with categories: Ikoku Meiro no Croisée



This was quite the interesting episode. For one, Alice made no appearance whatsoever, so the creators aren’t trying to overuse her, but this episode also went another step further in its analysis of the cultural differences between France and Japan. Previously it discussed things like different foods and climate,but this time it really looked at the people: how they act towards each other and strangers.

Beyond that, Yune also had the bad luck to get lost in the middle of a rainy day where everyone would be rather pissed off, but I’m actually surprised at how she thought that talking to strangers with a smile will catch their attention: my impression of Japan (and do correct me if I’m wrong here) was that it’s very difficult to talk to strangers, in an “everyone’s minding their own business”-kind of way, even more than what’s common in Europe.

The shop scene pretty much nailed it though: I was also really surprised when I first found out that Japanese shop keepers tend to really flock to you and try to assist you in every way. Beyond that, this episode also addressed the poverty in the area quite subtly as an introduction: we’ve seen that young boy before, and only now he just makes his move, actually taking advantage of Yune’s niceness.

Oh, and in the meantime this show is also doing quite a good job in fleshing out its characters. The Aria-esque parts where Claude explains how important his grandfather is to him also really worked here, and this episode pretty much did that with the rest of the cast as well
Rating: ** (Excellent)

8 Responses

  1. Kevin Caldwell says:

    It has baffled me for some time now, that no one has brought up the “king’s gallery”‘s name in the comments.

    Shouldn’t it be “galerie du roi” instead of “roy”? That surprised me even more when you mentioned the studio had its roots in France and they have a very capable speaker for the intro.

    Nevertheless: Slice of life with a good dose of culture shock is nice. I like the show so far :)

  2. Kevin Caldwell says:

    Ah poop. I gotta eat my own words… So on the *second* page of results Google tells me roy is actually old french for roi.

    Feel free to flame me ;)

  3. Nyitora says:

    “my impression of Japan (and do correct me if I’m wrong here) was that it’s very difficult to talk to strangers, in an “everyone’s minding their own business”-kind of way, even more than what’s common in Europe.”

    Not really. Maybe they won’t necessarily come up to help you, but if you ask, they certainly will help. When I was there, we asked some restaurant workers standing outside where another restaurant was, and they helped us, and we didn’t even speak Japanese. It is kind of everybody minds their own business, but it’s also like Claude’s grandfather says, a group mentality to help people too.

  4. Joojoobees says:

    “my impression of Japan”

    I also think an issue is the age in which the show takes place. At the time, a female (of any age) in a Japanese city would not have gone out alone. Yune, therefore, is comparing home-life, and whatever knowledge she has of shops in Japan, with interactions on the streets of Paris. Naturally random strangers are much different than those who are visiting your home (or your store).

  5. Van says:

    @Kevin Caldwel:
    Roy: Old french word for Roi.

    The french in this anime is actually quite good (narrator french pronunciation & the words on stores) and accurate.

  6. Van says:

    Oh lol, sorry for the double post, but I wanted to say that I did not see your 2nd comment Kevin xD
    Disregard what I said in my previous post, then.

  7. paj says:

    Well, let’s say that all Asian Merchants will really come after you if you have money. I mean from observing my parents, I would know, we smile and we really will help if it means profits. We’ll even go so far as to help you pick stuff and put it in your car if it means a good sell. =) Or we’ll even give you a freebie to entice you to comeback to our shop or to get ur taste buds open for new varieties. Seriously, asian have this mentallity. I sear go up to any shop owners and if they are in the customers service like boutiques and small booths at farmers market or baazars. . .they’ll really smile and act the way yune does it because asians feel happy when they are waited upon.

  8. paj says:

    Well, let’s say that all Asian Merchants will really come after you if you have money. I mean from observing my parents, I would know, we smile and we really will help if it means profits. We’ll even go so far as to help you pick stuff and put it in your car if it means a good sell. =) Or we’ll even give you a freebie to entice you to comeback to our shop or to get ur taste buds open for new varieties. Seriously, Asian have this mentality. I swear, go up to any shop owners and if they are in the customers service like boutiques and small booths at farmers market or bazaars. . .they’ll really smile and act the way yune does it, because Asians feel happy when they are waited upon.

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  • Vincent
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:40 AM)
    @Bam There also was the fractures within the Korean Peninsula itself. Quite astounding, really, that a nation as small as Korea is divided to this day. Not even counting the Japanese and Chinese aggression.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:39 AM)
    @Vincent: you probably know of it twinfold: both with the aborigines and then again with the Japanese invasion of Korea.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:37 AM)
    Then came the missionaries to convert the locals and make them forget their own culture and heritage and instead follow the words of their newly crowned white lord and savior. And to this day the region is predominately hardcore Catholic. Mission accomplished I would say.
  • Vincent
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:35 AM)
    @Bam What better example of a massacre paying off for the invading force, than the sub-baked rock I’m from? Australia has a dark history.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:35 AM)
    Again, I don’t condone the genocide. It is a mark of shame in the history of the region that the countries try do to whatever they can to brush under the rug.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:33 AM)
    @Vincent: I would argue that the massacres did pay off for them, as they systematically dismantled any semblance of government and society that was left and made it ready to them to set up shop; just like they did.
  • Vincent
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:31 AM)
    @Bam Of course. It might be the reason why the Spanish straight up killed the Incan king even after he paod the ransome money. They’re guided by bloodthirst and adrenaline rather than critical thinking.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:29 AM)
    @Vincent: and they were also victorious in the end. So we can safely assume that although illiteracy is a burden, it is still not a deciding factor.
  • Vincent
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:27 AM)
    @Bam Yeah, and the Spaniards came in leaky ships and joined in on the already occurring civil war.
  • Bam
    (Saturday, Oct 25. 2014 02:25 AM)
    @Vincent: not at first. When Muhammad came out of the cave he had two followers: his wife and his cousin Ali, and the entirety of Jewish and Christian world (which back then was pretty much the world) out to kill him. He won over his allies with intelligence and shrewed political maneuvering.

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