“Carole and Tuesday, what they did was practically a miracle. It would certainly go down in the history of Mars as the MIRACULOUS 7 MINUTES. This is the story of the 2 girls who set it all in motion.”
As far as my eyes can see 2019 has given us some really amazing shows to watch and love. From medieval dark fantasy to Futuristic musical drama, 2019 has covered a lot of genres in the spectrum we refer to as anime.
Let me hype this up. Shinichiro Watanabe is the director of Carole and Tuesday. Yes, you read that right! The creator of Cowboy Bebop and Samurai Champloo is behind this. All of these shows among other things relay that Watanabe has had a hand in things that have a unique flavor to them. Which really separates his work from most anime out there. If you have watched any of them you could probably recognize some of the little touches and patterns that make a Watanabe anime, well, a Watanabe anime. Originality is the main ingredient in his shows and Carole and Tuesday is a product of that very idea. You have never seen a “Sci-fi” music anime like this, ever!
Agreed you have shows like K-on!, Your Lie in April aka Shigatsu wa Kimi no Uso, or Given. “K-on!” is a slice of life musical drama set in the school life of 4 girls. It revolves around there funny antics.
“Your lie in April” is a romantic musical drama with a lot of jaw-dropping visuals and fine which has a cavalcade of emotions. As for “Given”, its a slice of life shounen-ai/yaoi musical about 2 boys who start their own band.
Carole and Tuesday is a mixed bag of all these elements.
So let’s move ahead. HAJIME!
The Setting of Carole & Tuesday
The world of Carole and Tuesday is set entirely on a terraformed Mars. We do get nods to our pale blue planet in the form of riots all over it. Although it was a speculation that this show shares its universe with Cowboy Bepop and Space Dandy; why? two words: SHINICHIRO WATANABE.
Now that most of humanity has left Earth and set its sights on a new frontier: Mars. Fifty years after migrating to Mars, the planet is all sleek, stylish, shiny and spectacular. It has a very Cyberpunk-ish vibe to it. They don’t have real pets now (not abundant) but there are a lot of AI Pets. The show heavily focuses on the usage of AI. It takes place in a New York inspired metropolitan city called Alba City.
Okay, this is where our story begins. When the destinies of 2 teenagers intertwine, they team up to revolutionize the music industry of Mars. That was a very subtle way of putting the plot across for every one of you. Now to dissect it. On one side we have a runaway teenager named Tuesday Simmons who hails from a rich family. She wants to become a musician and comes to Alba city with just her luggage & her Gibson acoustic guitar.
On the other side, we have Carole Stanley, an orphan refugee from earth who barely makes end meet is trying out new jobs but her endgame is also to become a musician. When Tuesday was having a bad day and was standing on a bridge she hears Carole singing while playing her piano.
When an officer tells her to go she is caught in Carole’s affairs and the two end up becoming friends and form up the singer-songwriter duo under the name Carole & Tuesday. The show starts from the final episode and whatever we see are the flashbacks of events that led them together to change the music industry of mars.
The World and Music of Carole & Tuesday:
As I mentioned above Mars is now humanity’s latest frontier, it is technologically advanced (no flying cars btw) and relies totally on Artificial Intelligence. The resources are in abundant quantity for its inhabitants.
As the main highlight of the show is how AI works in tandem with the artist to create a song which in turn is an instant hit. So this instance this is a nod to an idea which dates back to at least the 1990s. Basically, David Bowie helped develop a piece of software that arranged the lyrics into new combinations to help with writing. Nowadays AIs can generate instrumental tracks of songs based on data from existing music.
There are a considerable amount of large-scale professional concerts in the early episodes of C&T. They seem conventional even by real-world standards, with lots of flashy display, a neon-lit stage with insane pyrotechnics.
Crystal in Carole and Tuesday:
A certain character by the name of Crystal. She went on to use holographic birds which baffled the audience at that moment. In comparison to recent times, only Eric Prydz’s Holosphere at Tomorrowland could be compared with it. Although during video game championships/music fests we see the usage of augmented reality to incorporate virtual characters into live performances. Other than that we have smart luggage, which is biologically linked to their owners, robotic pets, e.g Carole has a robotic owl which is an alarm clock of sorts but it helps her in light chores as well. Then we have a one-wheeled electric skateboard, sort of like Onewheel’s pint but the latter seems to be a tad bit heavy.
Carole and Tuesday is a musical anime, in that case, it really lives up to the name of the genre. Because this series has by far one of the most amazing original songs I’ve heard in a long time. They are all in English so you will not have any trouble in understanding it, plus with the context, they have a very deeper meaning and will touch your soul.
The artists on mars use AI to write songs, Carole and Tuesday are old school in that department which helps them make a name for themselves.
Amidst all the razzle and dazzle, the titular duo give us some real substance with their singing.
Especially during the finale *mild spoilers* that song is about mother’s love. I am sure those of you who will watch might sob eventually.
Characters in Carole and Tuesday:
The cast of Carole & Tuesday is lovable, except Jerry, he is an idiot. Except him, you can’t hate anyone. Plus when you get to know their voice actors, your perception might change about them in fun ways. Carole and Tuesday’s manager Gus is a person who is dealing with his divorce but when it comes to music it won’t distract him. He is voiced by Akio Ootsuka (Thorkell in Vinland saga, Marshall D Teach in One piece). After knowing him you might understand his character’s undying enthusiasm to get the job done.
Next up DJ Ertegun, a person so narcissistic that the word itself might feel shy. He is voiced by Mamuro Miyano (Rintarou Okabe in Steins Gate, Lin Yao FMAB). He serves as this show’s comical relief, you need to find out the rest all by yourself will not spoil it for you. Other then that we have Tao, a legit man of mysteries, voiced by Hiroshi Kamiya (Levi in Shingeki no Kyojin! and Trafalgar Law in One piece). So just like his other characters he is a genuine badass, you’ll see how.
Relatability of Characters
Other than that the characters in this show are pretty relatable if you get to know them, which is a Watanabe trademark, They don’t have any unnecessarily complicated backstory. He presents them in the most simple yet likable way possible. For instance, Tuesday has a family yet she feels lonely because her mom is a control freak. On the other hand, Carole is an orphan but at the same time, she has a strong will which helps her in being a buddy with Tuesday. The only person who was kind to Tuesday is her elder brother Spencer. Finally, we have Angela, a child star and rival of C&T is a very ambitious person but her struggles somehow reflect the problems of literally every musician who goes through depression and loneliness.
The most cool thing about this show is that some of the characters are inspired by real-life musicians. Like we see a guitarist who sings like Billy Ray Cyrus, Carole’s childhood buddy Amer aka Ezekiel has similarities with late, xxxtentacion. We get to see a contestant on a reality singing show who is like the martian version of Vitas. Then we have Pyotr whose demeanor during the performance is akin to the Kpop artists we see nowadays. So, in short, we have a lot of variety.
I have covered the stuff which I wanted to share. Give this genre a chance as I did, none of you will regret it. The 1st volume of the soundtracks is available right now while the 2nd or the final volume will release on the 23rd of this month. one more thing, the tech which you will see here helps speak to one of the show’s major themes — criticizing the idea of removing humans from music creation.
In order to fully explore that idea, Watanabe created a world where humans didn’t make music, AI did. But he also had to make that world feel relatable to the audience. That he did pretty smoothly by the way.
Carole and Tuesday along with its captivating animation, beautiful songs, and a really simple yet satisfying conclusion will never let you forget about the tale of 2 girls who had the power actually to change the world with music. This is actually that one Netflix original you should give a crap about because you haven’t seen anything like this.
So keeping it real, till next time guys.