The Black Reaper and the Golden Fairy

Gosick is a 24-episode anime set in the fictional European country of Saubure in the mid’ 1920s.  The main character is Kazuya Kujo, the 3rd son of a Japanese Imperial guard who enrolls as a foreign exchange student at an exclusive school in Saubure – St. Marguerite Academy.  Because of his dark hair and dark eyes, he is known to the student body population, who shuns him, as the Black Reaper.  One day, after spending a day in the library reading up on the Black Reaper, Kujo discovers a hidden garden on the top floor – the hideout of the reclusive student Victorique de Blois, known to their classmates as The Golden Fairy in the High Tower.

Kujo soon learns that Victorique has a penchant for snacks and has an uncanny ability to piece together clues from a crime scene her “Fountain of Knowledge,” which she uses to aid the local police in solving criminal cases.  Victorique cannot leave the library or the school grounds on a whim, and to kill her boredom, she assigns Kujo the task of bringing her interesting cases to solve.  Soon, the two become unlikely friends, solving mysteries mostly involving popular ghost stories or legends.

As the anime progresses, more information is revealed about the mysterious Victorique – about her circumstances, parentage, and past, and the anime focuses less on the stand-alone mysteries that she and Kujo solve, and more on Victorique’s personal life story.

Gosick has very good animation and character design, and the mysteries in the first part of the anime are interesting and only a little bit creepy.  The latter half of the anime, about Victorique’s life, becomes more complicated, with social and political conflicts, but interesting nonetheless.  And though comedic and light at times, Gosick has dark, political undertones which tackle the implications of  scientific revolution on a global scale.

Gosick (2011)

24 episodes (January 2011-July 2, 2011

Personal rating:  4/5

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