Bee Train, best known for their work on Noir and the .hack universe, have once again brought us thinly veiled yuri subtext with many hints of a cool storyline, uber-competent female characters in a mysterious setting, none of which will be explained or resolved to anyone’s satisfaction in their newest series, Madlax. ^_^
Let’s just recap today, for those readers who do not remember, or have not yet discovered the Bee Train tendency towards Yuri.
In Noir we follow the violent experiences of amnesiac assassin Kirika and cool assassin Mirielle, as they track down their respective pasts and the occult/medieval/conspiracy/quasi-religious organization that binds them together. In the process thereof, we see Kirika and Mirielle open up to one another so far as to use whole sentences from time to time, never actually kill each other, with tantalizing bits of nudity, bed-sharing and affection shown in ways that only a fan could love. :-) A letter, written by Kirika to Mirielle towards the end of the series, beginning, “My beloved Mirielle” is marginally more overt. In a panel at Anime Expo 2002 (which I moderated, so I KNOW they said this, it’s not third-hand info) the Bee Train team discussed the potential relationship between Kirika and Mirielle stating simply that it was there if you wanted it to be, and if you didn’t, it wasn’t. So there you go. Whatever you want to see is the truth.
.hack/sign showed us the burgeoning affection of two young people in the virtual “The World” (the mainstay vitural universe/game that ties all the .hack stories together. Tsukasa, played by a female, but male in “The World,” has been trapped and is becoming, (or has always been) schizoid. Subaru, played by a wheelchair-bound woman, is powerful in “The World” by nature of her experience and skill, more than having any actual *power.* Subaru and Tsukasa bond, and perhaps, start to fall in love. In the final moments of the show, in fact, during the final credits, the two women who play the characters meet in the real, non-virtual world, in what is actually a touching scene. It’s certainly hopeful, at any rate.
Less satisfying was the ending of Avenger, Bee Train’s last series where nothing is resolved…nothing explained, either and the entire story really didn’t make any sense, since everyone was gonna die, anyway. The “yuri” in Avenger reads way more like a mother-daughter relationship, IMHO, but hey, remember, whatever you want to see, *is* the truth with the ole’ Bee Train crew.
Which brings me to the newest series, Madlax. Tomorrow I will review this series in irritating detail for your enjoyment. ^_^ In the meantime, run out and watch all of Noir and the last ten minutes of .hack/sign, so you get the feel for Bee Train Yuri. ^_^