Violet Evergarden Review: Treading new waters

violet evergarden reviewNetflix is spreading its tentacles into anime.

Recently there have been a wide variety of shows that have become Netflix exclusives. Obviously the streaming giant is trying to win over the mostly series hungry demographic of anime watchers. Binge watching from show to show.

These are dark times

The story revolves around Violet Evergarden, who, after a military career, becomes a doll. A person who writes letters for those who cannot write. Loosly translated into analphatbatics, which in the timeframe, an alternate history somewhere around the 1915’s, weren’t as uncommon as today, apparently. In a beautifully crafted world Violet Evergarden travels from city to city, village to village to help those who cannot write send messages to their loved ones.

Violet Evergarden reviewWhat sets apart this series from other earlier Kyoto Animation installments is the Netflix acquisition of the series. A very strategic move from Netflix to go straight after the big fish in anime. Kyoto animation is a reputable studio with a great track record. Pulling in such an authority, serves as a great marketing tool for Netflix, showing what it is capable of by financing shows like Violet Evergarden.


Violet Evergarden is split into different arcs. The story is stretched over stand alone episodes with a red line guiding them towards the end. The red line being the search for the major who sacrificed his life for Violet. Her journey to find him brings her across the world.

Not every episode is as strong as can be in Violet Evergarden. While some are very touching, like the child who lost her mother and Violet tries to comfort her through her letters, others are plain or vague. Often I wondered what was going on, or I lost track of the story altogether.

This episodic approach brings great opportunity for the studio to play around with different styles and narratives and showcase a great variety of scenery, but there is the threat of non consistency lurking in the shadows. From time to time this pops up, causing the show to lose some of its triple A vibe.

Look and Feel

Obviously Violet Evergarden is a great looking show, since it comes from Kyoto Animation. The visuals are crisp, the details abandoned. Movements are smooth, especially the flowing of Violet’s hair in the wind. Different parts of the country are portrayed in great variety, giving the show an expansive feel.

Violet Evergarden reviewOne thing that kept bothering me though, was the overbrightness of the show. It prevented the colors from really popping of my screen.

Verdict 8/10

Violet Evergarden is a visual spectacle that sets the bar high for oncoming anime shows on Netflix. The story has its ups and downs, but is strong enough overall to make it a great run and a formidable addition to the Kyoto Animation lineup.

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