Why register?

make an anime and manga list, and more! all free!


Le Portrait de Petit Cossette Review

December 16, 2008

story 6/10

Le Portrait de Petit Cossette screenshot

Le Portrait de Petit Cossette begins as a stylish and moody portrayal of distorted reality: Kurahashi’s obsession with the girl inside the glass instantly throws up questions of whether he’s going mad or being haunted. As the narrative gets into its stride, it develops an eerie, schizophrenic technique (manic smiles and claustrophobic close-ups abound), which makes the bizarre turn of events morbidly delightful.

So, why the low score? The problem I have with Le Portrait de Petit Cossette is that, from the end of the first episode, it throws out wave after wave of crude symbolic imagery (seemingly in a bid to look more disturbing than it actually is). Anyone who remembers The End of Evangelion will know what I’m talking about – lengthy, disjointed sequences with the sole purpose of propping up the limp narrative. Unfortunately, watching Kurahashi get his guts torn out as he hangs haplessly from a cross just stirs up memories of even worse vulgarities such as X The Movie and Angel Sanctuary, memories I’d rather not have. Furthermore, there are only so many gloomy shots of candles, chains, and crows I can take before I start scratching at the walls myself.

At the final moment, Le Portrait de Petit Cossette introduces a mildly interesting twist, but, by then, the story has already taken one episode too many to get to the point and it fails to save the show as a whole. Ultimately, the flashier Le Portrait de Petit Cossette gets and the harder it tries to shock and disturb, the less interesting it actually becomes.

animation 8.5/10

While gothic motifs are usually too trite for my tastes, I certainly can’t fault Le Portrait de Petit Cossette’s technical quality. Applying a rich colour palette, it depicts Kurahashi’s spiritual struggles in sharp up-light shots, quirky phantasmagoria, and plenty of thick, splashing blood. Furthermore, although not stylised in concept, the creative use of well-placed camera angles and cuts – combined with the aforementioned motifs – gives Le Portrait de Petit Cossette a very edgy atmosphere.

sound 8/10

The background music is rarely intrusive; rather, it builds upon the lush animation and the extensive use of natural sounds to generate a powerful atmosphere. The only notable songs are the opening and ending themes, both of which demonstrate beautiful vocal performances.

The voice acting is excellent all round, if rather wasted on such a hollow script.

characters 5.5/10

Having little running time in which to develop, Kurahashi is only interesting because he’s at the centre of the spooky events, whilst Cossette’s main attraction is being a lolicon ghost. Apart from that, there’s not much that makes them memorable – heck, there’s not even anything that makes them likeable. Kurahashi, for example, spends most of his time hallucinating (or does he?) and confused about what is happening to him, which are not behavioural traits to evoke adoration. As for the supporting cast, none of them make it much beyond being cardboard cut-outs.

overall 6.5/10

Plotting is not Le Portrait de Petit Cossette’s strong point; in fact, the only advantage it has over lesser horror shows such as Jigoku Shoujo is a budget as deep and wide as the void of originality it’s trying to fill. This is a self-indulgent jaunt through the gothic horror genre, nothing more, nothing less. With that said, Le Portrait de Petit Cossette is short and thus still passable by any standard.

Anime Info

Kurahashi has never been the same since the hallucinations started. His condition is not medical in nature, and only seems to be triggered by an antique glass which shows him things he never would wish to see. For Kurahashi, figuring out the mystery of the Petit Cossette that appears to him in his waking dreams is a matter of life or death... and his sanity...

( ! ) Warning: Unterminated comment starting line 1 in /home/anime/templates/right_join_reviewer_box.php on line 1
Call Stack
10.02854534784{main}( )../entry.php:0
20.06124835000include( '/home/anime/public_html/reviews/anime_entry.php' )../entry.php:18

my anime:

not rated

About the Author

VivisQueen's avatar


I'll review anything as long as there are words in the dictionary to describe it. Disagree with me? Want to leave feedback? Please do, but take a look at my personal rating scale first.

More Reviews


BrokenMirrors avatar BrokenMirrors
Jan 2, 2010

for me this series brought a nice feeling along with it. and i liked the main characters. it was definitely worth seeing.

i was wondering why you think the other characters - from the outside world - should be thoroughly defined. Kurahashi didn't care much about them, and the outside world was not important to the story. It seems to me that they were kinda used as a reference point: to show how kurahashi's behaviour would look on the outside and to help with understanding the story a bit. besides, reality being so shallow would make the fantastic events seem even more powerful or meaningful.

Another thing I wanted to say... the guts being teared out just didn't seem vulgar to me. the guy was suffering for his beloved. blood spilled and guts teared out as a sacrifice for someone you love just can't be vulgar from where i see it. I also liked Angel Sanctuary and I don't remember being horripilated :P Well, I guess we all perceive stuff in a different way so at the end it's just a matter of taste...

DeathCrunch avatar DeathCrunch
Dec 24, 2009

Glad I wasn't the only one who found the twist to be a dull thud. It was more a development, since after it was revealed, it had no large effect on anything.

Beautiful in sound and visuals but the rating is sound in reasoning.

skolnikc avatar skolnikc
Dec 4, 2009

wow you guys really look deep into it i just like getting baked and watching it makes it more enjoyable.

MoMoneyStacks avatar MoMoneyStacks
Aug 26, 2009

Nice review but I have to disagree with the rating.

I really enjoyed this OVA, the soundtrack was very dark and well put together (10/10), the plot was a big mind fuck with a fantastic story (10/10), although the support characters were a bit cliche I found the main ones very interesting and affable to a twisted mind like mine.

MaatiSan avatar MaatiSan
Aug 10, 2009

Nice review and very accurate, characters were shallow and ill defined, plot was only saved by some level of intrigue and the ending twist.

You must be logged in to leave review comments. Login or sign up today!