Review: Carole and Tuesday Part 2

The following review contains spoilers for the first half of Carole an Tuesday.

This is a very late review but it’s for a great series and deserves to be seen.

A lot has happened since the first half of Carole and Tuesday — in the real world as well as in the world of Carole and Tuesday. Though they were disqualified from the finals in the Martian talent competition, they showed enough talent to be award a recording contract as well as the winner Angela. Through this dual journey, we go along with them through the world of fame and fortune.

Much of the episodes of the second half are the adventures the pair have in not only securing the aid of a producer but of putting out the album as well. Meanwhile, Angela is on the path to genuine stardom as her musical career is beginning to take. Yet all is not good for her as her relationship with her mother becomes strained. The pressures of fame also begin to weigh on her as well.

Things are not so easy for the rest of the cast as well. The situation on Mars is rocky as presidential elections are approaching. Tuesday’s mother is leading in the polls with a strict anti-earth immigration policy. As it turns out, this is a policy that she doesn’t really believe in. But she strongly adopts it since it is a path that can lead her to the presidency of the planet. In fact, she is being manipulated by a manager that was, unknown to her, behind a Martian version of the Reichstag fire. Compound that with the fact that she is also Tuesday’s mother. And she is not happy with the career choice her daughter has taken.

Along with the immigration story we also encounter a dark side to fame. Angela is being stalked by someone who seems to know her every secret. Carole and Tuesday meet an old friend and flame and friend of Gus, their manager. Flora was once a big star who he helped discover but she gave up their relationship in pursuit of fame. She is now just a shell, having lost all that fame after battles with drugs and stress. Ertigan, the pretentious DJ star, has lost all his fortunes to an unscrupulous AI manager. When news outlets discover that Carole is an orphan, people come out of the woodwork claiming to be her parents. They inevitably leave once they find out that despite fame, Carole is broke.

When Carole encounters an old friend she knew from the days of being in a refugee camp, she finds he’s changed from a fellow refugee to a musical star in his own right. When it is revealed that he is illegally on Mars and detained by the planet’s version of ICE (MICE) that the many different stories start to come together. I don’t know if it is coincidence or purposeful that the idea of rounding up illegals and putting them in detention centers is reflective of the politics of the time especially considering the time involved in anime production from script, to character design, and animation. Coincidence or not, it hit a little too on the mark politically in 2020 when this second half of the season aired.

It may seem like things could be excessively dark. Despite this all, there is hope and optimism expressed in the spirits and songs of Carole and Tuesday as their paths intersect with those touched by the ongoing turmoils of Mars.

This second half really explores the power of music and how it can change the world. Things come to a head for Angela, who has given into the stress of her fame and isolation by diving into pills and alcohol. She must also deal with separation from those closest to her, whether it’s her cold producer or her overbearing mother. Her unwarranted dislike of Carole and Tuesday is obviously unnecessary but probably stems from resentment that they don’t use AI and perhaps a little jealousy of their ability to see the good in people.

The anime maintains it’s quality animation and character design. But the music is still the main drawing point and it continues to entertain. The girls are still a hopeful beacon amidst the more serious atmosphere. Netflix has brought us quite a musical gem. There is much to still delight from this show and we are quite fortunate to be graced with Carol and Tuesday’s magic.

Final Score: 9/10

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