Yuri Anime: Noir, Volume 7 (English)

May 14th, 2008

What a really fabulous series Noir is. It’s been years – practically lifetimes in fandom years – since I first watched this series as it came out on Japanese TV. I enjoyed it just as much, maybe even a little more, this time as I did lo those many years ago when I first set eyes on Kirika and Mirielle.

In Volume 7 of Noir, everything comes to a head. Kirika has left Mirielle behind and given herself over to the dark side of the Force. She’s entered the alternative universe of Altena’s Manor and, to Chloe’s genuine joy and delight, has dedicated herself to being Noir.

Chloe really blossoms in this volume and it still creeps me out.  ^_^

When Mirielle arrives, the sense that she’s come to free Kirika from a spell is not as strong as the sense that she’s arrived to allow Kirika to free herself. And then the battle become two on one and there’s no question, really, who the true Noir is. It’s the “End of the Matter” as the volume title states.

In the final episodes, as Mirielle takes on the members of Altena’s household, hearing Shinohara Emi as one of them was like a little easter egg for me.

There’s a lot of wonderful moments in the final volume of Noir, most of which would be spoilers, so I don’t want to point them out. If you have never watched Noir to completion, do – there’s gold in them there hills. If you have and can’t remember Altena’s final scene, then watch it again. It confirms what I have been saying since the beginning – she was a refugee from a completely different anime series. ^_^

We were treated to a bump up in Yuri for the final episodes, with Chloe fawning over Kirika, but for me, not being a huge Chloe fan, it was Mirielle’s decisions that spoke volumes about her feelings for Kirika.

The final production notes read more like a discussion guide than anything else. They propose questions for us, the audience, to answer, and end them all with “What was Noir to you?” I’ll tell you what it was to me – a story of love and redemption, a story of action and violence, a story of growth and diminishing, a story of two women whose lives change are irrevocably changed when they meet after many years. And the beginning of a fantastic triptych of girls with guns on the run.


Art – 7
Character – 9
Story – 8
Yuri – 6
Service – 4 Hawt ritual bathing action

Overall – 9

Still want to do a Noir, Madlax, El Cazador marathon. If they are each good by themselves, how much better will they be when we run them together until our eyes bleed? Everything’s better in excess! ^_^

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9 Responses

  1. Anonymous says:

    I just started watching El Cazador and Madlax out of order, but because you suggested it, I’ll do a marathon.

  2. jovvijo says:

    GASP! How can you not like Chloe? She’s only ten billion (plus minus) times cuter then Kirika (who has the personality of a dishrag) and a far superior Noir to My-really-Yuck (Always forget the blondes name but I think that sums her up nicely), who is forever needing rescue and seems to enjoy the entire Noir Anime in a state of advanced PMS!
    I cried so much when Chloe died, Bee Train knows how to wring the emotions out of you don’t they?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Yeah, couldn’t stand Chloe either, she just doesn’t seem to have any thoughts apart from a) kirika b) altena c) stabbing and d) kirika. :S

  4. whocares says:

    i hope someone will read this so.. can anyone explain the potted plant to me?
    thanks in advance!
    ps: i kinda liked everyone (pretty hardcore i know)

  5. Altena says:

    I was looking for it and couldn’t find – from what anime then is the character of Altena “a refugee”?
    You made me really curious.

    • I meant it generally…she doesn’t fit the assassin in modern France setting.

      • Altena says:

        Ah, ok, I thought you find her similar to another characters. Altena is an obsession of mine for 15 years now and except of writing fanfiction about her, I like to give the anime a deeper background. And btw, the Manor and the flashbacks about Soldats remind me a lot the legends of the Cathars in Pyrenees (being there from X to XIII Century, also fitting the time of the beginning of Soldats) and Altena herself acts like a Cathar Perfect.
        Thanks for reply!

        • I completely understand your point, and agree that Altena is not dissimilar – the very fact that she is living a 13th century life in the middle of the 20th century is, I take to be the point of her existence in the series.

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