What’s it about ?
1924, in the fictional European country of “Saubure” (sic, couldn’t they call it Savoie ?), there’s a prestigious academy gathering elites from the whole world. In a botanical garden above the library lives a mysterious girl who helps the police solve crimes with her intellect.
Kazuya Kujo, nicknamed “the black reaper” for reasons I can’t fathom. Our point of view character, a student fresh coming from Japan. Our Watson.
Victorique, our heroine. It’s heavily implied she’s never seen the world outside her green prison before the events of this series. There’s probably a convoluted reason why, but she’s not talking, despite Kazuya’s active prodding. It’s obvious she’s bored out of her mind there, and the mysteries she’s asked to solve are a welcome distraction.
Inspector Grevil de Blois, “the owner of the oddest hair in all of Saubure”. In the second half of the episode, Kazuya calls him on exploiting Victorique’s intellect for his own fame, and he’s got a point. Although he does not seem that bad of a guy, really, just not very bright and full of himself.
There’s nice backgrounds and it looks quite slick (it’s heavy on costume porn), but there’s nothing particularly impressive (it’s not a premise lending itself to action scenes, after all). It’s mostly bright colours, which is appropriate for a show which stays mostly upbeat so far.
The OP is gorgeous, with a nice “animated picture book” look. The ED’s okay, I guess.
Well, this one takes a lot of time to get started. Let’s be honest, I was prepared to write it off as empty fluff…
And then, halfway through, we get an impressive sequence in which Victorique solves a closed room murder in less than five minutes, without even going on the scene, purely from Grevil’s description of the case (and those five minutes include his exposition). This scene is just delightful, with a solution that’s both clever and simple enough to feel natural, and it does help that the banter between the three leads fires on all cylinders during it. If there’s one such sequence in each episode, it’d justify by itself watching the boring bits.
The end of the episode suggests that we’re getting a very tight wider mystery plotline instead of just a “case of the week” structure, which is probably for the better.