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Carole and Tuesday Key Visual

Source: Wikipedia

In Carole and Tuesday director Shinichirō Watanabe has either returned to the universe of Cowboy Bebob, or constructed an eerily close duplicate of it.

Oh, and this is a series that is truly at its best when the eponymous Carole and Tuesday are singing the love songs to each other that they don’t know[1] are love songs.

A Return to the World of Cowboy Bebop?

Carole and Tuesday is set on a terraformed Mars with a significant number of refugees coming from Earth. Which says that Mars is now the best piece of real estate in the Solar System. The story is mostly set in Alba City, which is also a location in Cowboy Bebop.

The currency is translated by Netflix[2] is Oolong, which is eerily similar to the Woolong of Cowboy Bebop[3].

So it’s either the same universe, or one that’s eerily similar.

That both series share the Idiosyncratic Episode Naming of being Titled After The Song only drives the similarities home in my mind.

Carole

Carole is a streetwise girl, one of the refugees from earth, longing to be a musician in an era dominated by AI written hits and songs.

Tuesday

Tuesday is a rich, isolated, hikikomori so desperate to make music and so overwhelmed by her oppressive home environment[4] that she finally runs away with an AI suitcase[5] and a guitar.

Having had the suitcase stolen, she runs into Carole

Carole and Tuesday

This is where the magic happens.

Two desperately lonely girls, longing for music.

Together they find it, and each other.

I’m not going to go into the details of the Carole and Tuesday storyline. Suffice it to say they pick up a manager of sorts, and try to make it big in the Mars music scene. This includes the usual anime hilarity as well as a more cynical look at talent shows like the Mars Brightest arc. Plus one character I despised on sight[6].

What I am going to say is that most of the music in this show was often, well, meh.

The exceptions were always Carole and Tuesday.

They don’t have that many songs in the first twelve episodes, but some of the performances are animated in a way that make it clear that Carole and Tuesday are singing more to each other than they are to whatever audience they might have.

It is in those moments that Carole and Tuesday becomes a truly brilliant show to watch, and one that I genuinely cared for. The rest of the time the hilarity of the antics, along with the slowly growing relationship between Carole and Tuesday is what I was watching the show for.

The lack of fanservice is also a relief.

The Verdict

Is Carole and Tuesday the best music based show that Shinichirō Watanabe has produced? No, that would be Kids on the Slope.

Is it worth watching, even with the constraint of having to do so on Netflix (and their bullshit claim to it being a “Netflix Anime Original”? Absolutely. I’m looking forward to the second cour if and when Netflix gets around to releasing it.

[1] Or haven’t yet admitted to themselves.

[2] Insert obligatory rant about the awful Netflix anime experience here.

[3] The Cowboy Bebop fandom wiki (where I got the Alba City link from) claims that it is the same.

[4] Although there are elements of Tuesday’s family that are lovely. It’s mostly the mother that is horrible.

[5] The suitcase was funny.

[6] Rightly as it happens.