The animation is fantastic, and would have been some of the best of 2004 but for one crucial flaw: the CGI. While the style of the anime is fantastic and easily the highlight of the show, the creator’s insistence to rely on decidedly sub-par computer graphics for a large part of the show definitely hampers it.
However, the rest of the visuals are amazing. Like in Soultaker, an anime from the same director, Cossette no Shouzo is amazingly adept at using color, visual perspectives, and striking backgrounds together to meld an amazingly cohesive and impressive visual package. Like in Soultaker, the visuals are basically unique to the director, and are a strong point in the show’s favor.
I’m actually torn as to how much the music contributed to the show. The OST is undeniably excellent (I’m downloading it as we speak), but at the same time I understand the argument that the music doesn’t fit the show as well as it could. There is definite merit to that complaint, but in the end I think the OST is just too good to really discount. The fact that that the mood set by the rest of the show differs from the OST is still a point against it, but a fairly small one.
The voice acting neither impressed nor annoyed me.
Some will think that the story is “confusing,” but in these cases the person will be more befuddled by the style of the story than the actual complexity. The actual plot is fairly simple, but provides a decent backbone for the OVA. Additional depth would have been nice, but would most likely be impractical given the show’s length and focus.
The characters are fairly shallow, and serve more as pawns in the overarching plot than actual human beings. Cossette, the title character, is the only one interesting enough to mention. However, even her appeal is more derived from how she is viewed by other characters than her actual development. All in all, the characters are decidedly underdeveloped, and probably could have been done better.
Cossette no Shouzo, above all else, is a niche title. The entire OVA is designed with a certain target audience in mind, and the work will do little for those who fall outside this group. That said, I enjoyed the show a fair bit, and would recommend it to fans of the horror genre.
This is one of the most impressionist works that I’ve seen, in that its plot is so clearly secondary to its mood. Many of the more traditionally valued aspects of anime are discarded in favor of creating a decidedly gothic feel.
The result is a fairly abstract and bizarre work that lacks mainstream appeal, but which will most likely please those that enjoyed similar work like Requiem from the Darkness, Hitsuji no Uta, Pet Shop of Horrors, etc.