Posted 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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  • Juno
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 05:37 AM)
    Because as of this moment, my childhood could NOT be happier…
  • Juno
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 05:37 AM)
    I can’t be the only one FREAKING OUT OVER THE NEW JOJO ENDING THEME, right?
  • K-Off
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 05:32 AM)
    And although everyone said already, the launch scene is gorgeous.
  • K-Off
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 05:30 AM)
    @Friend Man, you are something else. The chapter reeled me into the story. I didnt see any faults with it, except for one typo. The scenes are well composited, and like nyan said, the only “faults” are nitpicky things :)
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 04:21 AM)
    Yeah, I think this falls more into the category of typesetting than anything else and there’s plenty of different ways that can go depending on preference. If the readers don’t have an issue, then it’s fine.
  • Friend
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 04:11 AM)
    A problem ve faced with american comics is that they usually dont contrast the speech bubble with the surroundings too well. That might be a factor, as large bubbles mean more visibility of the text itself.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 04:05 AM)
    ah well, I don’t really mean the amount of content, but a negative space thing. it’s easier on the eyes when there’s a bit of space around the bubble for me.
  • Friend
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 04:03 AM)
    Sure, I was tempted to pack in my bubbles, moreso with my weekly form of several pages. But I figured I should take time to develop each moment.
  • Nyangoro
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 04:01 AM)
    It’s a matter of compressed vs decompressed storytelling. Just a result of how the two evolved, I suppose. It makes more sense when you consider the multiversal approach to mainstream American comics in relation to the isolated worlds found in Japanese manga.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, Apr 20. 2014 03:54 AM)
    With that said I did not find this an issue in her comic.

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