Posted on 30 December 2007 with categories: Anime Reviews, Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

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.

Posted on with categories: Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

What an awesome way to end such an awesome series! Even though there was nothing of Thenardiére and Azelma, we get something that’s even better: the death of Jean Valjean. I didn’t believe that this series would be able to make me cry after the revolution ended, and thankfully I was so wrong about this. Jean’s end was incredibly well-done, and is it me or did the graphics look better than ever in this episode?

This episode starts with a time-skip of what I’d guess are a few months. Gavroche and his two brothers are settled into their school, and especially Gavroche is making a lot of progression. Cosette and Marius have just moved out, into Courfeyrac’s old apartment. It’s at that point where they get a letter from Jean, and with that they finally manage to find him back.

The guy has indeed wilted away, and has become sick in the months that he was away from Cosette. It also seems that he stopped using fake names, and he’s known to the people as just “Jean Valjean”. He also stopped hiding the chandeliers from everyone, and he actually grew a small beard. When Cosette and Marius meet him, he finally has the courage to tell Cosette about his own life, and of the times he served in jail (it was awesome to see Jean in his twenties, by the way). After he finishes telling, it seems that he’s finally content enough to stop caring about his own life, and dies.

In the aftermath, we see Javert again as well, when he comes to give a quick visit to Jean’s grave. The anime ends with a few flashbacks and shots of the different characters passing out food and clothes to the poor, and the final scene goes three or four years into the future, where Marius and Cosette along with their daughter, a very reminiscent scene for the first episode when Cosette had her final moments with her mother.

To close off, I would like to thank Irene, angedemystere, Tania, Dookers and R for keeping the comments coming. Out of all the shows I’ve been blogging, Les Miserables has had the most discussion going on in the comments, and it was a lot of fun to read them for every week. I’m not sure if you’re going to watch Porfy’s Long Journey as well, but I’m definitely going to follow it. :)

Posted on 25 December 2007 with categories: Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

Angedemystere, you were right. Thenardier gets more than enough closure for this episode. His final plan was way more desperate than I imagined, when compared to his cunning plan of the third arc, where he basically tries to blackmail Marius with all the things he knows about Jean Valjean. Not really the most solid plan. Humans can indeed change, and Thenardier shows how this can happen for the worst. I really like how he and Marius clear up the misunderstandings they had, and Marius even finds out that it was indeed Jean who saved him. It seems that at that time, Thenardier mistook the unconscious Marius that Jean was carrying for a dead body, belonging to a person that Jean had robbed and killed afterwards. When Thenardier gets arrested, Marius also sees the guy’s face again, clearing up the misunderstanding he had that Jean killed Javert.

I’m surprised that Javert didn’t arrest Marius, though. He should have recognized him, though I guess that if he wanted to have Marius arrested, he would have done so long ago. I think that he has already forgotten about Marius’s crimes, just like with Jean. In this episode, it also happens: Jean takes off, without notifying anyone where he went. Marius can now take care of Cosette more than enough, so he decided to go back to the countryside, and help the poor farmers with their work. Marius, Cosette and everyone else don’t agree with this, though, and spend the episode, searching for him. The final episode will probably deal with this, and clear up the distance that Jean has kept in front of everyone.

One thing I’m really hoping for is to see Cosette, return to Montreul-sur-Mer for one final time, and meet Thenardiére and Azelma. It feels like the two of them could use a tiny bit more attention, and I’d love to see Cosette and Thenardiére make up after all these years, not to mention that they haven’t found out about Eponine’s death yet.

Anyway, I finally managed to catch up with everything, and I can now finally read the comments on episode 48 without the fear of being spoiled. ^^;

Merry Christmas everyone, and I hope you have a great time. :)

Posted on with categories: Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

Oh my gawd! Thenardiére lost weight in prison! That was quite a shock to see how much she had changed. ^^;

And yeah, I totally forgot about the wedding, which took place in this episode. It was really cute, especially seeing some old faces back again (Cosette’s friends from the monastery return! Yay!) and of course the two children who entertained the guests at the dinner-party by singing random songs. ^^; Thenardier also returns for a bit, and he’ll probably get his big moment in the next episode.

You also have to love Marius’s uncle, who keeps begging him and Cosette to come and live with him. But no, instead the two of them will move into small house and take care of themselves. Also, Jean has finally decided to speak about his past. In the next episode, Marius will probably hear all about the things he did when he was younger.

Posted on with categories: Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

Awww, how incredibly sweet. It baffles me to realize how much time this series is spending on wrapping up all its stories. Most series aim to have their conclusion at their final or semi-final episode, but this of course makes things very hard to wrap up properly after everything is over, and most of these endings are done hastily. Even series that also spend a lot of attention to their storyline (Higurashi and Seirei no Moribito) never came close to the amount of attention that Les Miserables is currently getting.

In this episode, it’s Cosette’s turn to wrap up her storyline, when she and Gavroche travel back to Montreul-sur-Mer and meet Sister Sanplice and Alain, who finally tell them the details of Fantine’s death. I’m surprised that they never mentioned Javert, but I can imagine how they didn’t want Cosette to continue to feel hatred towards the guy who killed her mother. She’d indeed be much happier to think that the harsh circumstances were the ones that really killed Fantine.

It’s also very nice to see that because of Fantine, a new orphanage has been created to take care of all the homeless children, to prevent them from ending up like Cosette and Alain. Overall, this was an excellent episode, despite the tension. Now, there are three episodes left, and there are three characters that still need closure: Thenardier, Thenardiére and Azelma. It would be awesome to see them again.

Posted on 2 December 2007 with categories: Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

And with this episode, all remaining threads for as far as I know have been neatly wrapped up, aside from the Thenardiers. Now… what the heck is going to happen in the final four episodes!? The only hint we have is Jean, who spent the episode trying to decide where to go from now. Cosette is happy with Marius, and she’s finally reached the point where she doesn’t need him anymore. Now, what is Jean going to do?

In the rest of the episode, Marius tries to find the guy who saved him (he doesn’t remember that it was Jean), and Jean eventually ends up lying about how he wasn’t the one, and he made up a story of how he got away in the confusion. Marius also finally runs into Gavroche, and breaks the news of Eponine’s death to him and Cosette. He has settled his differences with his grandfather, and yes, he ends up proposing to Cosette. Awww. :3

One thing I am glad for, by the way, is that the animators found themselves some budget again. Especially the proposal-scene looked really pretty.

Posted on 25 November 2007 with categories: Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

Well, ignoring the fact that the animation basically went south (such a shame that the animation-budget ran out, right before the ending of this series), this was a really solid aftermath, that basically did everything it needed to do to provide enough closure to the youngsters of this series. Jean and Shushu reunite Gavroche with his two younger brothers, and the three of them come to live along with Jean and Cosette. Later in the episode, they’re also admitted to a school, so that they can study properly.

Marius meanwhile wakes up, and has to face the hard truth: out of all of Les Amis, he’s the only one left. I loved how mature Cosette was in this episode, taking care of both the injured Gavroche and providing the right support to Marius. The two of them really are a couple, and I love the realistic way in which they’re portrayed.

The thing is, though: there are five episodes left with this, and this episode alone would already have been enough to provide closure for this series. There’s still something that’s about to happen, but what? I can imagine how Thenardier is going to return for a final time, and it would be awesome if Javert, Thenardiére and Azelma got some more screen-time as well. I seriously have no idea what the creators have left in store for the final part of this series, but let’s hope that the animators will get themselves back together and finish this series off with a bang.

Posted on 18 November 2007 with categories: Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

Okay, I don’t care about the cheesy parts. This episode was absolutely magnificent! Just when I thought that this series had passed its best part, it comes and delivers such an incredibly awesome episode. Obviously, spoilers are going to follow.

If this was a regular anime, this would be about the time where the adults step back and let the youngsters take over. In this episode, it’s the ENTIRE OPPOSITE, as it features the final epic conflict between Jean and Javert, and the younger members of the cast take a step back and only get a few small minutes of airtime. At the end of the previous episode, Jean had a badly wounded Marius with him, and indeed, Jean finally stops running away and agrees to go with Javert if he brings Marius to a hospital.

We then switch to Javert’s carriage, where I absolutely loved the conversation Jean and Javert had, and to make things even better, Jean explains what exactly made him change so much. It turns out that the words of the bishop brought him in a huge confusion, and he lived a miserable life of a drifter at that point. Then he got accidentally mistaken for a thief, and scared a child away because of it, and that’s what made him see the light.

Javert finally has this moment when he realizes that Jean still has Fantine’s last wishes in his mind, after all these nine years. Marius is dropped off at the hospital, and Javert leaves Jean behind when the latter wants to say his final goodbye to Cosette! Later, when Javert realizes what exactly he had done, he really sees the light. Literally and figuratively, and I adored the amount of depth that he got with his little monologue.

Immediate changes in personality are often hard to do, and they often feel forced, but for me, this episode was awesome, both for Jean and Javert and more than half of the scenes had me crying at the screen. I’m not sure whether it was done this way in the book, but one way or the other, this episode was outstanding.

And right now, I’m wondering what the creators have been planning for the final six episodes. Will it be one long aftermath, or will Thenardier return one final time? The latter would be awesome.

Posted on 11 November 2007 with categories: Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

And so we start with the aftermath of the revolution. I think that with this, we’ve passed the best part of the story, though that doesn’t mean that the current episode wasn’t excellent. We see Jean, escape from the sewers, Gavroche, waking up and finally getting to see Cosette again, and Cosette, who afterwards returns to the scene of the battlefield, discovering that everyone died. I do have a few points of critique for this episode, though.

Thenardier returns! Finally! It could have used a bit more foreshadowing, though. The guy almost literally appeared from out of nowhere, and we’ve got no clues as to what he’d be doing in a sewer in the first place, especially when he just happened to be where Jean found his exit, with none other than Javert waiting on the other side. Did the novel explain this better? I mean, the potential for the next episode is huge, but it’s a tad too coincidental. :P

I’m also still hoping for Thenardiere and Azelma to get released from prison, but with seven episodes left, I think that they’ll get some more attention, as it seems that the creators are going to have to fill the remaining airtime with a few fillers here and there, because the book doesn’t seem to have enough material left to fill them. That’s also why I found Thenardier’s appearance so strange, for a series that was always so careful with building up.

Another thing that bugged me in this episode was the animation: it went everywhere! It’s not something that I’m used to of this series, which has always had very consistent graphics. Did something happen over at the producer’s side?

Posted on 5 November 2007 with categories: Les Miserables - Shoujo Cosette

Oh, that was amazing. This episode concludes the fourth arc of the series. Gavroche unfortunately lives, but to make up for it, we get treated to an outstanding episode. Obviously, spoilers are going to follow.

The definite highlight was the face-down between Jean and Javert. Seriously, that’s what I call an antagonist! Takano from Higurashi just bleaks when compared to Javert and the excellent development the guy’s been having through the series. The way he convinced himself how Jean was pure evil, and how humans can’t change was magnificent, and it was awesome to see how Jean basically let the guy go, so was the entirely different side Javert showed of himself in the process.

And boy, I never expected ALL of Les Amis to friggin’ DIE at the end of the episode! The insert song may have been a tad wrong, but still… whoa. I also loved the conversation between Jean and Enjorlas (I gave up trying to spell his name correctly), and how they think about the future generation. While the current revolution failed, it’ll give inspiration for the future, where the next generation can pick up where Les Amis left and truly change the country. It was also an excellent scene where the drinking-guy (forgot his name! I don’t care!), after having been absent for so long, symbolically saved Enjorlas, before both of them got killed by the incoming policemen.

Jean and Marius are probably the only survivors, as they manage to escape through the sewers. The final arc is going to be a short one (only eight episodes!), but something tells me that the creators have saved a few ace for last: the Thenardiers! They’ve been quiet for the past climax, because none of them but Eponine had anything to do with the revolution, but the fact remains that Thenardier still holds a huge grudge against Jean. He’s going to do something to him… but what…?


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  • Bam
    (Tuesday, Oct 6. 2015 12:04 AM)
    On the note of good balance between humor and drama- I think BoJack Horseman is an example of a show that executed that almost perfectly in both seasons. You are laughing one minute and amused by the hijinks and silliness and the next minute you are actually moved and shocked by the honest introspection. Too be honest BoJack is more a tragic character then a goofy one, and his struggles are deeper and more existential than they have any business being in a show with anthropomorphic animals.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 11:56 PM)
    The changes in the setting actually made me more excited for season 3 then what I felt the past few weeks, since now the plot needs to move forward from the cliffhanger and hopefully this translates to more cohesion and refocusing on what mad the show great in the first place. I’m pretty sure S3 will also be a blend of episodic and arch story elements tho. Overall a few ups and downs but still a great show.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 11:52 PM)
    The finale also had some of the most overall arch story elements featured in the season. Earth joining the Galactic Federation is a big deal story-wise from now on. Also the use of a cover of Johnny Cash’s “Hurt” (not the Nine Inch Nails one clearly) was a nice fitting yet surprising touch. The throwback to Mr. PB after the credits was a good idea, but felt flat in it’s actual execution.
  • Bam
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 11:49 PM)
    I thought R&M had a pretty good finale. The episode achieved what was missing from most of season 2, and that was a balance of randomness and meaningful bits. What made Rick Potion #9 and the previous season’s finale and general tone great was a sense of humor that was combined with more sincere drama and character developments; a sort of sweet melancholy.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 09:51 PM)
    @K-off, not having too much trouble with the interface but I still cannot create categories.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 08:56 PM)
    Eh, I’ve updated myself now on the onepunch manga and also the manga for yuruyuri, I can cross the shows off my list now. I forgot to mention onepunchs first episode crammed in the first volume.
    I stopped reading though around chapter 30, it was decent fun for a bit but I’ll be continuing with it in small doses.
  • k-off
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 08:19 PM)
    @Aidan Yeah? Well I at least have to hand it to psgels for continuing to pay for the site. By the way, is WordPress still fucked up on your end, or is it fine now?
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 04:57 PM)
    @;(: Actually that was probably a bad word choice on my part, I meant that the humour in those episodes didn’t always work so well for me.
  • Kaiser Eoghan
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 04:56 PM)
    Whereas my favourite season 1 episodes were Rick potion n09 and rixty minutes.
  • ;(
    (Monday, Oct 5. 2015 04:55 PM)
    @Emma: What do you mean by “uneven”?

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