One of the most endearing qualities of Gosick is its solid plot. While at first it seems to be somewhat episodic, one quickly finds that the conflicts and mysteries of each episode are inextricably linked and all point to a grander scheme. This show is easy to continue watching all the way through; rather than being easy to watch, it's difficult not to watch. Also, unlike many animes, it doesn't leave one with a dissatisfied feeling resulting from an unresolved conflict or love triangle. None of that here.
There are a couple of character flaws in the main cast, but given their circumstances and the era this anime is set in, they make sense for the most part and make the characters more interesting. There are of course one or two cliché characters around, but they don't seem to negatively affect the show.
To sum it up: If you enjoy mystery / suspense, if you like an anime that doesn't require you to slowly trudge through 15 episodes of filler in the middle, or if you like anything with an interesting plot and a solid ending, give Gosick a try.
Warning this review contains spoilers
So another review for you all to enjoy, this time it is on the Victorian Mystery anime 'Gosick'. Now the story I felt was very detailed and completely different to that I normally watch. I loved how they based each story arc on a ghost story, I found that that was cleverly done. Also the arc at the end was well built up throughout the series and the ending sumed up the series perfectly in my opinion. The animation was well done for the type of series it was and was very detailed.
The music was amazing, the opening is now one of my favourites, it grabbed my attention straight away. I believe the opening captured the essence of the series perfectly and the 1st ending lived up to that expectation. However I didn't find the 2nd opening that interesting and was a bit of a let down compared to the opening and 1st ending.The insert music was alright.
The characters surprisingly were well developed, well most of them. I think that the creators of this anime did a good job when it came to the characters but there were some which were loosely developed this is why the characters didn't get a 10/10. I found that most characters were likeable throughout the series.
Overall I personally loved this series and I highly recommend it to people who like mystery and drama. The ending arc was sweet and like I said sumed the whole series up very well. It is now one of my new favourites.
Detective stories used to be about middle aged men and women with high intelligence solving cases of murder or robbery. It was always a procedure of analysing data, looking for clues, learning hidden info by onlookers and suspects. After a long line of thought processing, you would get an answer that would leave you saying “Oh, I get it now; it makes sense”.
And then Japan takes this concept and makes a joke out of it. If you think about it, all anime with detectives have an element of supernatural, magic, psionics, mind-control, reality alteration or something similar. None is 100% pure reality check because of that. Ok, most famous detectives in western literature also have a bit of fringe science in them from time to time but it is a very minor aspect; anime end up being MOSTLY fantasy because the investigators or detectives are using reason to solve supernatural cases. It ends up feeling forced and unnatural after awhile.
Until recently, detectives in anime were mostly ingenious teenagers and kids (protagonists just HAVE to be young in order to appeal the majority of the viewers) and despite the heavy element of fantasy, they were still using a basic line of thought in their work. The most famous anime amongst them is Meitantei Conan (aka Case Closed) which despite its episodic structure and simplistic characters, managed to keep going for decades thanks to its usually interesting cases and colourful cast.
Unfortunately quality in storytelling has gone down the drain the past years and thus we went from interesting mystery shows like Death Note and Monster to retarded loli garbage like Milky Holmes, Gosick, Dantalian no Shoka and Kamisama Memo-chu. Everything mush have loli tsunderes and coolderes. It just has to. IT MUST HAVE LOLIS OR GTFO! I have nothing against lolis if they are used in genres they belong to (lesbian incestuous tentacle megane nekomimi maid hentais) but it is very off to see them now being present EVERYWHERE even when they don’t fit at all. I understand that it is a very easy trope that sells TOO well these days but that does not mean it is quality material.
Before you get started with the show, let me give you the heads-up regarding who made it. The animation is done by studio BONES, which is highly regarded in the anime fandom as one of the best in terms of production quality. And indeed, the guys made a great job. Something though most people will NOT admit about them is how they have the bad habit of ruining their storylines along the way to the point the ending in all their shows is a big mess of rushed and poorly presented events that are more confusing or stupid, than exciting or satisfactory. Really, these guys just have no idea of how to make a good storyboard all the way to the end. It doesn’t help much to give the directing to Nanba Hitoshi, a minor name in the industry whose only other known works are the cool but eventually shallow and passable Baki the Grappler and the most horribly lame Heroman. This guy simply doesn’t have much of a talent in making interesting shows. So placing these names together is already spelling doom for what to expect.
The premise of the show is actually very interesting as it has to do with a fictional country in the Victorian era, the supernatural, a prophesy of impending doom, and lots of weird mysteries. All that of course are underplayed in favour of the interaction between the two lead characters to the point the anime is NOT detective/mystery/historical/adventure but slice of life comedy with hints of drama. And if you go really light with the show it is not hard to be immersed into the mood of it; not in terms of the story as much as the atmosphere. The production values are very good and you get yourself mesmerized with the well-depicted Victorian setting and the classical music. It is not SUPER good though; lots of lazily drawn scenes as well as forgettable songs.
The main heroine is Victorique, a goth loli cooldere/tsundere with a tragic past and super intelligence that is not voiced by Rie Kugumiya (it’s a miracle!). She is basically Sherlock Holmes turned loli (even smokes a bubbly pipe) and is named after the era of the show. She roams around solving mysteries while looking all cute for the otakus and does get development after her past is revealed and the prophesy of doom is all over the place. A problem with how she does her thing is that because each case is short, the resolution comes fast and hard in most cases and thus the mystery aspect of the show is not very exciting. You end up watching for her cuteness and not for the mystery. This is not a bad thing but definitely takes out the detective element from a DETECTIVE series.
In theory, if each arc was longer the hints would be better scattered and there would be time to let her analyze the data in a way that doesn’t feel like it came out of nowhere. Ok, it would also make it more simple and boring than it already is so it could only be saved by dealing with more than one cases at once or having the war prophesy taking place sooner. Anyways, that is all just big “ifs” and the bottom line is that Victorique is an ok character in terms of backdrop story, mediocre as an archetype, and damn annoying when she seems to solve everything so easily without giving us time to understand her line of thought.
Kujo is her aid and is nothing but the usual wimp boy who is her personal toy and of course she likes him a lot for that. But the truth is nobody likes this idiot, he is completely boring and supposed that helps the viewer to identify with him or something. Well I don’t identify with these boneheads; I like my leads to be GAR. He is otherwise just there because there needs to be someone carrying her luggage as well as someone to talk to about her thoughts, her cases, her story and generally EVERYTHING THAT HAS TO DO WITH HER OR THE STORY AND NOT HIM. His is not just irritatingly spineless but also has zero purpose in the show other than being a tired plot devise for the loli to do her things. It doesn’t even make much sense how in just one episode (the pilot) he turned from being terrified of her to being her best friend and later her platonic boyfriend. It never makes sense why anime girls (lolis or otherwise) are attracted to useless idiots and not GAR bad boys. Bad storytelling I guess, just like the handling of the cases. Not that most of the anime community seems to care though; they are used to having these useless pieces of meat in all modern show and just put up with them taking space.
In general, the overall plot of the show is plain bad. Most cases are not interesting, the silly moments are very average, and when the need for some development is needed, like adding tragedy or romantic interest, it again feels like it came out of nowhere because we don’t get to see or believe the turnaround. Like lots of internal monologues, or proper cinematics, or enough duration in foreshadowing. The dialogues are not helpful either as most sound plain silly and not fitting with the mystery/drama of the show. Not even the whole “prophesy of doom” is handled properly as it is again nothing but a cheap plot devise to insert thriller in a light comedy show that solves all its problems fast and hard. It doesn’t work.
The support cast is not captivating in overall (although definitely more than that fail that is Kujo) because they are treated as mostly comic relief characters and not serious people, doing serious work, and being part of serious crimes. I mean, what the hell is wrong with that other guy’s hairdo? Why is the female teacher in the school such an airhead? There is no way to take them seriously, no matter how much the scriptwriter tried to make them dramatic later on.
So overall Gosick is not something to “go sick” with its bad storytelling but not something to love either. It just has a loli with hax powers and a dork breezing though silly mysteries before in the finale they suddenly go all serious just to win final impressions. Well I am not impressed. It is a barely above average show that aims at moeblob fans and people who only care about the superficial aspects (the artwork or the music). I have to admit that is a lot more memorable than most other storyless moe school comedies for trying to have abit more story and a bit more special setting but other than that, it is very far from a good detective show with ingenious mysteries and unforgettable characters. It is (just like most mainstream anime a mostly light and silly watch for mass pleasing and nothing close to what could make it an all-time classic. And sure, most people will say it is amazing, just because they would compare it with your average moeblob instead of your average detective story. It can be good if you see it like that but bad if you see it like the other case.
And now for some excused scorings.
ART SECTION: 8/10
General Artwork 2/2 (looks nice)
Character Figures 1/2 (generic)
Backgrounds 2/2 (detailed)
Animation 1/2 (basic)
Visual Effects 2/2 (good use of lightning)
SOUND SECTION: 7/10
Voice Acting 2/3 (corny but fitting with the feeling of the series)
Music Themes 3/4 (not great but fitting with the feeling of the series)
Sound Effects 2/3 (ok I guess)
STORY SECTION: 5/10
Premise 2/2 (interesting)
Pacing 1/2 (erratic)
Complexity 1/2 (not much)
Plausibility 0/2 (none)
Conclusion 1/2 (cheesy)
CHARACTER SECTION: 6/10
Presence 1/2 (generic)
Personality 2/2 (rather cheesy but well founded)
Backdrop 1/2 (generic and simplistic but it’s there)
Development 1/2 (overblown but it’s there)
Catharsis 1/2 (overblown but it’s there)
VALUE SECTION: 3/10
Historical Value 0/3 (none)
Rewatchability 1/3 (low because of too little plot)
Memorability 2/4 (good visuals but otherwise meh)
ENJOYMENT SECTION: 2/10
Art 1/1 (looks nice)
Sound 0/2 (sounds typical)
Story 1/3 (feels generic)
Characters 0/4 (they are generic)
The story takes place in 1924 in a fake European country, where our main character Kujo, a Japanese transfer student, has just arrived at an elite academy. But because of his black hair and eyes people call his “The black Reaper” much to his dismay everyone is afraid. So one day Kujo is in the library when he meets Victorique, a short girl with long blond hair, who spends her days reading and solving mysteries for her detective brother Grevil. Hmmmm, a misunderstood boy everyone thinks is a punk, a short tsundere whose father is an asshole, and there misadventures together, sound familiar, well it should, it’s Toradora in Victorian England with mysteries. Okay that might be going a little far but the similarities are odd. So the story fallows around Kujo and Victorique as they solve mysteries, and if the thought of a gothic loli, tsundere Sherlock Holmes tickles your fancy, well you can stop reading and just go watch the show now, haha just kidding, because around the half way point shit hit the fan and the show gets ummmm strange. I honestly don’t know how to feel about this show, the first half was AMAZING, the mysteries were mysterious, the romance between Kujo and Victorique was there but it was subtle enough to have you wanting more. But then the whole thing with the Ministry of the Occult and the Science Academy and the second war and AHHHHHH, not to say that the second half was bad, it’s just uhhhhh, I don’t know, I honestly just don’t know, it just felt like I was watching a spin off of Gosick, instead of Gosick. It also felt somewhat rushed; I think a third season would have done this show good. But despite all of this it was still and enjoyable, and it’s definitely a unique story, so take that how you like it.
It was done by Bones, what more do I need to say. Bones was the reason I watched the show in the first place. So yeah beautiful animation blah blah blah
I didn’t notice the soundtrack AT ALL, and that is not a good thing. There are soundtrack that blend so well that you almost forget they’re there but then you find yourself later being like “Oh yeah this song was in that scene”. Gosicks soundtrack on the other hand is one that is just completely forgettable and not really worth mentioning. The voice acting was nice, but what isn’t these days.
As I already said Kujo and Victorique are basically the European versions of Ryuuji and Taiga respectively. Except that Victorique is a lot smarter than Taiga, so there’s that. Really thou I did like all of the characters, Victorique was really good, with a tragic back story and a goal to achieve. One of my favorite characters was Grevil, Victoriques half brother, mostly because of the hair(which they actually explain why he wears his hair like that, which surprised me), but also because he does have some comic relief, but something serious needs to be said or done, he’s ready to do that too. On the other hand Marquis (Victoriques father) is a huge ass, which I still don’t understand quite why he’s such an ass, even if they did explain it. But all in all good characters, oh you want to know more about Kujo; well to bad cause he doesn’t get as much characterization as the rest of the cast so sucks for you.
All in all, good show with some good mysteries, even if it does go off the deep end a little near the end, it didn’t entirely kill the show for me, it was close, but maybe that’s just me.
The Storyline is so unique and amazing and addicting and ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! As you can tell I really adored this Anime so much. It was almost perfect, only thing I didn’t like was some of the episodes I found slow or not important and of course some other little things here and there. The pace is great bar those odd episodes.
The Animation and Sound was good. The opening songs were really good, but I did like the first ending, but can’t really remember the second ending that well, so not sure on that one. The voice acting was good and each voice actor suited the character that they were voicing.
The Characters were all unique and different. The main female character Victorique is so funny with the way she acts with people, especially how she treats the main male character Kazuya. She is very smart & small and with that she’s just the perfect detective. Her half-brother is one of the characters that I despise and hate with all my might.
Overall I really loved this Anime, but a few little things made me rate it lower than I would have liked.