Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Lay your rational mind to rest - Earl and Fairy

As long as you are not too serious about it, Earl and Fairy is a perfectly entertaining show. It it not pretending to be anything other than pure shoujo fun, so do expect a lot of handsome men, close ups of their faces, sweet talking and absurdly grand adjectives. Let your minds relax a bit, why so serious?

The show introduces us to Edgar, the lethally dangerous nobleman who is dying to get a sword to prove his lineage and Rydia, the fairy doctor whom he abducts along the way to aid his search. The usual stuff happens, formal dinner parties, grand cruises, actions and sword fights with violence obscured, or toned down with a layer of bubbles and dazzlies and of course, fairies.

For all its mention of torture, kidnapping and other horrible happenings, this series manages to keep itself light and bubbly. There is no lesson to be learnt through the series, it won't teach you anything, it won't make you think, in fact, the best way to enjoy the show is through shutting your rational senses down completely.

After all, fairies, as seen in the anime, and a lot of other works such as Peter Pan, are not exactly rational creatures. So, let's be irrational once in a while and jump into Neverland.

The series has all the right props for a model Shojo show. Although it portrays the era featured in Victorian Romance Emma and Kuro shitsuji, it lacks the historical details of the former and the tinge of dark mysteriousness of the later, Earl and Fairy made it all up with pastel pink bubbles, balls and lacy dresses.

A ball happened almost every two episodes, so plenty of chances for the heroine Rydia to (unwillingly) show off the garments in her wardrobe (funded by the Earl, her romantic interest, no less). Balls happened quite a lot in series that featured the upper class in the Victorian era, but it's happening with such frequency is still remarkable. So I just can't help but wonder where, or how they found the money to finance their expensive activities, especially since I have never seen Edgar work at all.

But that doesn't really matter, since the Fairies, whom Edgar governs didn't seem to mind all of these too much, in fact, they have been waiting so long for their king to return that they did not even care too much about the authenticity of the tattoo that marks the lineage of the Blue Knight Earl on Edgar.

The sweet talking, performed mainly by the Earl, forms the staple of the dialog in the show. Perhaps to keep the victorian atmosphere, English words are used constantly to describe the character's attributes e.g. Rydia's eyes are peridot and her hair is rust/caramel colored, while Edgar's eyes are ash mauve. Whether these (ridiculously) grand words are distractions or romantic gestures are up to interpretation.

Although the show has its (glaringly obvious) short comings, the beautifully drawn characters more than make up for it. The details missing in the plot have shown up on the character's facial features, expressions and colourings. It seems like the author and the production team knew exactly where the charm of the series lie and are exploiting it to its full potential.

Let your mind rest, this is not Tytania, Legend of Galactic Heroes, Monster, Death Note or Meitantei Conan, once you get used to the rhythm of Earl and Fairy, it's more and more amusing, plus, there are quite a few eye candies available.

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