And finally, the behemoth of the series that is known as Les Miserables -Shoujo Cosette has ended. For the revival of the World Masterpiece Theatre, the classic novel by Victor Hugo was chosen to get an adaptation, and the result has become terrific; a masterpiece in terms of story and characters. Sure, the series is aimed at children, but don’t think that children will be the only ones to enjoy this, because Les Miserables is an epic for every age.
The series consists out of five arcs, where every arc is different from the other. Indeed, the first arc focuses on how a small girl called Cosette has to live under the evil Thenardiers. The fourth arc, however, deals with a bunch of men that fight for their beliefs in a revolution, and Cosette herself actually plays a very small role in this. There is indeed a lot of building-up, but because of this, every character can be fleshed out and developed. Every bit of storyline can be explained and carried further, and every single climax works, and takes the best out of the characters and the story, with the definite highlight being the fourth arc.
Les Miserables definitely isn’t your standard anime. There are no cheesy villains that are out there to destroy the world. No teenagers that can pilot giant robots. What we have here is a story that manages to remain realistic and yet exciting. Every character fits his or her role exactly and there is hardly any character that doesn’t develop somehow. There’s just one downside, though. The book was quite dark, and most of the dark elements did remain in the series. Unfortunately, the heaviest themes as prostitution and suicide had to be scrapped though. The ending also ends up being much lighter than that of the book, but that doesn’t mean that it’s less developed. Les Miserables remains an excellently written series, from beginning to end.
Overall, if you liked Studio Ghibli’s non-action movies then you’ll definitely like this one. It’s such a shame that the subs have only reached up till episode 6. If there ever was a series that deserves to be subbed, it’d be this one, because for me it had the best story and character-development of the entire year of 2007. Let’s hope that Porfy’s Long Journey doesn’t get the same negligence.