Posted by psgels on 19 September 2011 with categories: Anime Reviews, Ikoku Meiro no Croisée




Here is a slice of life series with a twist: instead of focusing on the same old setting, Ikoku Meiro no Croisee focuses on a Japanese girl who starts to live with a French blacksmiths in the Nineteenth century. If you’re like me, and you like slice of life series, but not the ones where just nothing happens, then this is one for you.

This show has two focuses. The first is its cast of characters. The second is celebrating both French and Japanese culture, and the difference between them. The studio behind this series, Satelight, has a lot of French roots and connections, and they were utilized wonderfully for this show. Throughout the series, this show examines all kinds of differences between the culture of the French and the Japanese of the 19th century, ranging from food, weather, gestures, customs: a very wide variety. Supported by that is a team of absolutely wonderful background artists, who give a gorgeous depiction of Paris in those days. The setting in this series is amazingly portrayed.

In terms of the characters meanwhile, you get very heart-warming slice of life. Especially Yune and Oscar are great character. Yune incredibly adorable, while Oscar feels very refreshing, standing miles away from the usual “grandfather”-stereotypes. The rest of the cast also has a great chemistry with each other, though there are a few issues with them individually. Claude, the main character can get a bit too angsty for the sake of drama. He acts too unfriendly and bossy a bit too much for it to be really believable. Alice meanwhile will annoy a lot of people in her first appearance, because of how spoiled a brat she is. Both get better over time, though.

This summer season really was lucky to have two such good slice of life series with Ikoku Meiro no Croisee and Usagi Drop. The big difference between them is that with Usagi Drop the drama was very realistic, while with Ikoku Meiro no Croisee it’s a bit forced, while at the same time Croisee succeeded more in creating a heart-warming atmosphere.

Storytelling: 8/10 – A bit forced with its drama, but very heartwarming and relaxing.
Characters: 8/10 – Yune is absolutely adorable, great chemistry, though a few characters that take a bit getting used to.
Production-Values: 8/10 – Satelight has really improved: consistent and the background art is great.
Setting: 9/10 – Amazing depiction of France of the 19th century, full of cultural differences.

Suggestions:
Hourou Musuko
Ristorante Paradiso

3 Responses

  1. Will says:

    It’s a bit sad this series doesn’t get any reply. I’m recently watching it right now, and I think that it’s beautiful.

  2. Mormegil says:

    Certainly the most atmospheric anime of the season, heightened by the lovely music and setting. Great show. I’d love a second season, but who knows if it will ever happen.

    Thanks for blogging it, psgels.

  3. ayame says:

    I liked the series, but I think it could have done better – at least for the ending. I’d like to see the main ‘actors’ handling Yune more like a human being rather than a cat and although we get this in the manga, we don’t in the anime. ‘Yune is a cat that should wear a bell’ is almost what is left in the audience’s minds… I also want to complain about the music that didn’t appear very french to me. Just go check Ristorante’s Paradiso ost and you’ll understand how similar they are. That’s laziness from the artists’ side. As for the ‘full of cultural differences’ part, I will not agree. We did get treated with some but not that many. And not any that an otaku wouldn’t know already (at least for the japanese part of the series). For me it was pretty ok- I mean a moe show wouldn’t go much further. It was a fluff oriented series. But I’ve seen other bloggers attacking it for this lack and accusing it for pretentiousness and ‘sexism’ (that last part is =.= out of historical context, completely).

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  • k-off
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:35 AM)
    @Bam If someone is a neocon, they usually have a bible open on their desk, a library full of Ayn Rand and Chuck Smith, a picture of Thomas Jefferson on one side of the room, and one of Ronald Reagan on the other.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:34 AM)
    @K-off: try it m8, this is genuinely different then most adventure games that I’ve played, and I’ve played a lot. It also helps immensely that the game looks really good and the character models are based off the Granada series’ actors. The new voice-actors take a bit to get used to tho.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:31 AM)
    @K-off: oh yeah she sounded like she was in need of a good screwin all her life. I forgot who we had here that like her a lot. You know the funny thing is how Republicans hold unto her writings as life guidelines, and then completely ignore all the anti-religion stuff that she had to say lol
  • k-off
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:29 AM)
    @Bam I’ll try that, but for a casual gamer like me those are usually off-putting.
  • k-off
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:26 AM)
    @Bam I personally have no problems with CS Lewis but I cannot get through some of Ayn Rand’s books because she’s such an asshole.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:23 AM)
    @K-off: I see, well I guess that doesn’t necessary makes them bad writings, but he does lose a bit of respect in my eyes for that.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:21 AM)
    I might’ve mentioned this before but Sherlock Holmes: Crimes & Punishments is an excellent adventure game that actually puts you in the shoes of Holmes and at the very helm of each investigation. You make inferences and deductions based on evidence and conversations, and is up to you to decide who is guilty. It is often pretty complex and requires noticing of details to make the right call.
  • k-off
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:21 AM)
    @Bam I’ve read his other writings and I’m 99% sure he meant for it to have Christian undertones. That last percent is from Plato, but that’s about it, lol. Even that had been turned into an allegory for Heaven.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:18 AM)
    Cumberbatch is gifted, but Sherlock the series is never meant to be taken seriously as any kind of adaptation. At least not in my eyes.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, Nov 23. 2014 11:17 AM)
    @K-off: sorry, prolly missed that.
    You know I’ve never read those actually, I was put off by the Christian undertones and whatnot. But to be fair I never noticed any of those until I saw them pointed out in an analysis, so who knows, he might’ve personally never meant for it to have those connotations.

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