Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Ikoku Meiro no Croisée - Episode 8

With Yune back on her feet and fit again after her illness last week, there's more good news to come from this eighth episode of Ikoku Meiro no Croisée - namely, the introduction of cats to proceedings.

Truth be told, the cats in question are purely and simply a metaphorical device around which to base this instalment, as we more specifically find some of our characters compared to stray cats against others who are shut in their homes.  All of this comes to the fore as Yune pays a visit to Alice to thank her for her help in recovering from that aforementioned illness; a visit which sees her accompanied by Claude, therefore giving us an opportunity to delve into the prior relationship between himself and Camille as hinted at earlier in the series.

While Claude himself seems to have little to say about the matter when he finds himself spending some time with Camille during Yune's visit to see Alice, Camille herself has plenty to say as she reveals a slightly darker, butter and jealous side to her personality - one which she also lets show through to some extent when talking to Yune in what is ultimately a bittersweet exchange between the two of them.  Ultimately though, and following on from Yune's comment Camille's way of dressing (referring to it was "like a bird cage") earlier in the series, the real story here is one of freedom versus captivity, with Camille in particular very much a hostage of her own class system and position.

Although I continue to coo over the frequently gorgeous aesthetic and animation of the series, I'm not so sure about it's attempt here to delve a little deeper into some of its characters and their circumstances, mainly on account of the fact that it felt a little as though it were trying too hard to force its point home.  I can't quite put my finger on why, but something simply didn't feel natural about what we saw here, and the overall experience suffered as a result - not to the point of being bad or unwatchable; it simply didn't have the same draw as the rest of the series prior to this point.  Given how enjoyable those previous instalments have been however, I'm willing to forgive it an off-day, although it looks as though the Claude-Camille dynamic will be further explored next week...

No comments: