I have a confession to make: I didn’t want to watch this series for the longest time. Obviously, I’m not really a fan of children’s TV, and I thought this would be just like any other kids’ show, but the reviews were just so good that finally I gave in, and I do not regret it.
First of all, Miraculous Ladybug is a French children’s television series created by Thomas Astruc and first aired on October 19, 2015 in France, and December 6 of the same year in the U.S. It’s about two Parisian teenagers, Marinette Dupain-Cheng and Adrien Agreste, who can transform into superheroes known as Ladybug (Marinette) and Cat Noir (Adrien). As superheroes, Cat Noir is head-over-heels for Ladybug, but as normal teens, Marinette has an enormous crush on Adrien. Cute concept, right? Together, the two take down various supervillains (while trying to discover the identity of a single recurring one) and navigate everyday troubles of adolescent life.
The first time I saw this I wasn’t really impressed, I’ll admit. There were a few things I noticed, mostly Cat Noir’s flirting and the masked, mysterious recurring supervillain, that made me go, Oh, the French. But other than that, I really couldn’t get into the catchphrases or the ridiculously elaborate transformation scenes (without a doubt inspired by Sailor Moon). So, that was that, I thought. I’d watched an episode, wasn’t really wowed, thought it was kinda forgettable.
And yet I came back for more.
Now, this isn’t that surprising, seeing as the only reason I came back the first few times was to see Cat Noir interact with Ladybug, but after that the show came to mean more to me. I realized how much I was beginning to relate to some of the characters (mostly Marinette), and how cute and endearing the whole concept of the show really was.
Let me start with one thing: if you’re like me, and you can actually appreciate overdone clichés when they’re paired with joyful environments and charming characters, then you’ll love this series. From the typical crush on the cutest guy in school, to the girl bully, to that one ‘I have my mask on so they can’t recognize me but the second I take it off they can’ trope, this series is riddled with them, but in all the right ways. In other words, the clichés aren’t totally frustrating, but instead are fun and liberating. Whenever I watch an episode, I find myself cringing and hiding my face from the embarrassment of a character being humiliated in front of everyone, or in front of a crush. I bite my lip and worry when there’s a close shave of Marinette (or anyone else for that matter) being caught doing something wrong. And most of all, I squeal and kick my feet when Cat Noir flirts with Ladybug, or when Marinette plucks up the courage to talk to Adrien. I normally am not one to be completely swept off my feet by the characters, situations, or emotions in a television series, but here comes Miraculous Ladybug, making me squeal, swoon and wince with every episode. I mean, who doesn’t want the cute but awkward Marinette to be noticed and acknowledged by her handsome crush, or for her to realize that the bully is trying to sabotage her plans before it’s too late? It’s something this show will make you fall for again and again!
On a quite different note however, I find myself also admiring the creativity and originality of the writers working on this show, because for every episode, there has to be a new supervillain. Every. Episode. I don’t know about you, but I would’ve quit trying to come up with them after about five episodes, at the most. But these people are geniuses when coming up with new themes, names, and powers. Often I find myself thinking, Wow, I’d really like to see a supervillain like this in a Marvel movie. Okay, I’ve only thought that a couple of times, and granted, some were a bit bizarre, but overall, most were impressively creative and I would totally want their powers. Just another way this kids’ show brightens my day.
Now, lastly, I’d like to delve into the characters themselves. Obviously there is the main character, Marinette, who’s clumsy and awkward but well-meaning. I can appreciate a character like her because in this show, there is a stark contrast added between her and her super-powered alter ego, Ladybug. As herself, Marinette lacks confidence and is impulsive, but as Ladybug, she is a smart, take-charge kind of girl. Her crush Adrien is the same way. As Adrien, he’s nice, but subdued, neglected by his rich father. When he becomes Cat Noir though, he also becomes someone slick, romantic, and gentlemanly. Contrasts like this are really inspirational to me, because it shows that we all can be more than we think we are. However, there are some darker contrasts as well. Many characters throughout the show are wronged or humiliated in some way, and so are transformed into supervillains, acting out their own desires for revenge or freedom in horrible (sometimes even a little frightening) ways. While we can all have superheroes inside us, that means we have supervillains too, and it is up to us who we’ll choose to be every day. An excellent, positive message for kids.
So, to wrap this all up, Miraculous Ladybug is a hopeful, inspiring kids’ show that’s suitable for teenagers or millennials too. If you’re looking for a superhero show that isn’t entirely dark and depressing or one that actually wears its campiness well, then this show is a must for you. I usually find my episodes on YouTube, but they also air on Nickelodeon and I’m sure there are streaming websites out there to use, but I don’t normally like to use those so I can’t give out any web addresses. Anyhow, whatever way you like to watch it, Miraculous Ladybug is sure to brighten your day, no matter where or who you are!
What do you think of Miraculous Ladybug? Good, bad, somewhere in between? Anything else you want me to review? Be sure to leave a comment and a like below! God Bless!