Rose of Versailles

Chaos' Rating: 1 Chaos

Episodes seen: 6 of ? "Don't worry, baby--you're not turning gay.  I'm a woman!"

This *snicker!* dramatic epic is loosely based around the time and events of the French Revolution. In it Oscar Jarjayes, a girl who was raised as a boy and trained to become a soldier, eventually winds up as the royal bodyguard to the doomed Marie Antoinette, who is engaged to the soon-to-be-King Louis XVI. Lots of royal conspiracies, aristocratic opulence, tangled romantic relationships and rose petals abound.

Oscar wears a dress and uses sparkle-fu

Chaos sez: Okay for just a moment, let's forget about the obvious and gross historical liberties this series made with the events of the French Revolution. And let's forget about the ridiculously melodramatic plot and its many contrivances. It's also a good idea to forget how listening to the grating chants of "Roses, Roses!" in the opening song feel like Chinese Water Torture.

While we're at it, let's also forget about my eternal question, one which I fear will never be answered: why the hell is it that every time someone turns around, their eyes are sparkling more than their teeth?! Did the director feel compelled to flash penlights on the character close-ups during the animation process?

Forgotten about all that? Good. Now I'm free to say that each time I watch a Rose Of Versailles episode (6 in total as of this review), I laugh my ass off. Now here comes the bad news: this show isn't a comedy, folks. Rose Of Versailles takes itself very seriously, but everything is so ludicrously over the top that I find myself looking forward to an episode just so I can laugh myself silly and riff the show.

Oscar Jarjayes (but you can call her JarJar) is not to be confused with the furry green muppet...or a certain self-inserted, bestial hermaphrodite for that matter. However, she does have the look of a Leiji Matsumoto heroine wanna-be, and the appealing flair of a sopping wet, blonde wharf rat. The rising villain, the "Hey, look at me! I'm evil!" Duke Orleans, spends half his time dressed up like a deranged Tuxedo Kamen. And the snippy, doomed princess, Marie Antoinette, really doesn't strike me as the tragic character the narrator insists she is. In fact, there is not one character I've seen so far who I'd feel sorry for once the revolution comes along and wipes them out.

Apparently Rose Of Versailles was big in its day, a much-loved series with a large cult following. Well, my only love came from verbally shredding this schlock, which I'd compare to an animated Ed Wood movie. If you're looking for a good period piece, go check out Romeo's Blue Skies. Don't waste your time with this series, unless you & your friends want an Anime that screams "MST me!!"

Available fansubbed.

Created 26-10-01