On the surface, Carole and Tuesday are as different as can be. Rich and naive, Tuesday runs away from a sheltered existence to a city she’s never been to do something she’s never done. Carole has no family from which to escape, but lives more carefree and open, a very part of Alba City where she resides. Both girls, however, want to express something that can only be said through music—and perhaps which can only be communicated by writing and performing that music together.
It’s a difficult thing to make a great anime—there are so few of them out there and so many which are average or poor. Even Shinichiro Watanabe, whose work I adore, has had his misses, but it appears that he’s once again created something incredibly special with Carole & Tuesday. It all starts with two compelling characters, different and loveable, wwith backstories that are rich for storytelling and a dynamic between one another that’s already lights out. A compelling story is already being built—how will these two talents work together to overcome their difficulties and achieve their dreams in a future where they’re no longer wanted? Add to that an excellent vision of the future that feels authentic (the automated menus where a customer can call a real-life person over seems both futuristic and modern) and of course, excellent music, headlined by singing voices separate from the voice actors for the two leads, and you’ve got a recipe for a great series. It helps, too, that “True Colors,” a favorite song of mine, and Cyndi Lauper are referred to over and over in the episode, including on the cool throwback commercial bump—such a Watanabe move. It’s unfortunate that Netflix will wait so many months to bring it to the masses, and that the “consume now” anime fans will probably miss this one, because I think they’re going to skip right over what may become the best series of 2019.
Carole & Tuesday is licensed for streaming by Netflix.