Gosick – final thoughts
July 2, 2011
This is a *spoiler-free* review of Gosick, which, when approached properly, is quite an enjoyable show. I won’t spend too much time on details, such as production and cast credits, since they can be found elsewhere. Those looking for detailed discussion of plot points can check here. My main intention is to provide my opinion, that it is worth watching, and to explain briefly why. To do that I will consider genre, structure, and character.
Genre: I think some people were initially disappointed by Gosick, because they approached it as a mystery series, which turns out to be not quite true. It is actually an adventure story, that has several mysteries embedded in it. I think the mysteries are of varying quality. Their real purpose is to establish elements of the larger adventure story, and give the characters some time to be introduced and developed. You could fault the show, if you want, for doing a poor job of setting expectations, because it was hyped as a mystery series, which is a misrepresentation.
Structure: Gosick can be broken roughly in half, with the first half focusing more on the individual mysteries, and the second half where the mysteries increasingly become subjugated to the over-arching adventure story. All of the mysteries, in retrospect, tie in some strange way to the over-arching adventure story, but this isn’t immediately apparent, and some mysteries are connected in a very tenuous fashion. It should also be noted that the mysteries themselves are presented in a fairly regular rhythm of three episode arcs. It is easy to imagine that the show could have been tightened up somehow, by speeding up the delivery of one or more of the weaker mysteries in the first half, or eliminating one entirely.
Character: In my opinion, this was one of the real strengths of this show. While there were several characters that were very weak, they had close to no role in the series. The main characters, Victorique and Kujo, both had fulfilling development, with visible growth over the course of the series. Aoi Yuuki gives a wonderful performance as the mysterious Victorique. The relationship between these characters was also nicely developed, and is an essential component of the adventure that lies at this show’s heart. Several supporting characters were filled out in interesting ways, and a couple even were afforded growth, or interesting sub-plots of their own.
Shall I put together the fragments of chaos for you? Gosick was an enjoyable adventure tale that dragged out the mysteries in the first half a little too long. I think watching the show in three episode chunks (one mystery at a time) could help to maintain momentum in the first half. Aside from that, this show has very nice production values, and an intriguing setting, so check it out!