Ages ago, the fallen angels of Pandemonium, lead by the demon Aion revolt in an effort to be free of their Divine punishment. Labeled by hell as “sinners”, they attempt the impossible: to fight their way back into heaven. Humanity is largely unaware of this age old struggle, save the Magdalene Order, an organization who trains it’s members for the purpose of battling against Aion and his minions.
Skip ahead to 1925, New York. Joshua, one of the seven Apostles, God’s chosen messengers to earth, is kidnapped by Aion for purposes unknown. Determined to save him, his sister Rosette Christopher makes a contract with the sinner Chrno (who has defected from Aion’s ranks) and joins the Magdalene Order. The downside to this is that whenever Chrno uses his true form and demonic power, it drains a little of Rosette’s life. It is a literal race against time as Chrno and Rosette rush to save Joshua and stop Aion’s schemes.
I have mixed feelings about this series. First of all, the underlying premise is: Can Chrno be redeemed? Once an angel cast out of heaven but now utterly devoted to an apostle and his sister, is it enough? Does Chrno even have a soul? These questions are prevalent throughout the show, and I love redemption stories. Chrno is an excellent character. He struggles (believably) with his own “sins” and the pain and suffering he has caused others in the past and that he causes those he cares for in the present. Rosette’s character is nothing short of inspiring. This being one of those series that fills you with despair, the script plays heavily on Rosette’s “gift” of Faith. She is also a little rough around the edges, tends to overdo things physically, and has a quick temper which makes for some humorous situations. Unfortunately, these are the only two characters that the script bothers to go into detail about. There are a few others: Satella, who fights for the memory of her sister. Azmaria, a bumbling yet lovable apostle. Remington, the happy-go-lucky Magdalene minister. While we get to know a little about these characters, we don’t get to know very much. Satella is always angry. Azmaria is kind of emo. Remington seems to just be eye-candy for the female audience.
The animation isn’t too bad and the artwork is acceptable. The colors are very pretty.
Now, let me get to my biggest grief. Chrno Crusade boasts (not that it should boast) one of the WORST endings I have ever seen in an anime or a movie. Ever. I won’t say much in the way of it as that would give it away, but let me just say I wanted to bang my head against the desk. After all the oo-ing and ah-ing over Rosette’s awesome Faith, the message at the end seems to be: “We are screwed." Let me put it this way. The end of Chrno Crusade is like seeing this really big box under the Christmas tree, opening it and finding a pile of dog crap. I have never been so utterly frustrated by an ending as I was when I finished watching this.
Audience: There isn’t any fanservice and a minimal amount of skin is shown. The language is fine as well. However, there are demons and such which is probably a little scary for the kiddies. Chrno Crusade isn’t gory, but it does get a little bit bloody towards the end of the series, when the real fighting starts. So, I’ll recommend it for 16+.
Chrno Crusade gets a 5/10. That’s right! I cut the score right in half for the crappy crappy ending. Other than that, it was great. I suggest watching through episode 23 and then make up your own ending after that.