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Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir

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Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir
Romantic paris story done not cheesily.jpg
Cette émission est plein des miracles après tout ! (This show is full of miracles after all!)
Genre: Adventure
Action
Romance
Comedy-drama
Magical girl
Superhero
Running Time: 20-22 minutes
Country: France
Japan
South Korea
Release Date: September 1, 2015 – present
Network(s): TF1 (FR)
EBS 1 (KR)
Nickelodeon (NA)
Disney Channel (WW, NA)
Gloob (PRT)
Trans 7 (Indonesia)
Created by: Thomas Astruc
Jeremy Zag
Distributed by: Toei Animation
AB International Distribution
Mediawan
Starring: Cristina Vee
Bryce Papenbrook
Keith Silverstein
Mela Lee
Max Mittelman
Carrie Keranen
Ben Diskin
Selah Victor
Anouck Hautbois
Benjamin Bollen
Antoine Tomé
Marie Nonnenmacher
Thierry Kazazian
Seasons: 4
Episodes: 104


Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir (French: Miraculous, les aventures de Ladybug et Chat Noir; also known as Miraculous Ladybug or Miraculous) is a computer-animated magical girl superhero series produced by Zagtoon and Method Animation in collaboration with Toei Animation in Japan, SAMG Animation in South Korea, and De Agostini Editore in Italy.

Prior to its debut in France on October 19, 2015 on TF1, the series was first shown in South Korea on September 1, 2015 on EBS1. In the United States, the series debuted on Nickelodeon on December 6, 2015 before the show was removed from the network's schedule in 2016. On April 8, 2016, the series was officially picked up by Disney Channel in the United States and began airing since then. In the United Kingdom and Ireland, the show premiered on January 30, 2016 on Disney Channel and aired on the channel until September 30, 2020 when the channel closed in the country, transferring all its content to Disney+. On November 20, 2015, producer Jeremy Zag announced that a second and third season were in progress. On December 20, 2016, Zag announced that Netflix had acquired the U.S. video-on-demand streaming rights to Miraculous for seasons 1–3, including the English premiere of the Christmas Special, and a planned launch of Season 2 in 2017.

Plot

Set in modern-day Paris, the series focuses on teenagers Marinette Dupain-Cheng and Adrien Agreste. When evil arises, Marinette transforms into her secret superhero persona Ladybug, while Adrien transforms into his superhero persona Cat Noir, using powerful objects known as the Miraculous. Oblivious to each other's true identities, the two work together to protect Paris from the mysterious villain Hawk Moth, who covets and attempts to steal their powers by using his akuma, butterflies infused with black energy, to transform everyday citizens into supervillains.

Why It's Miraculous

  1. Has an interesting and unique premise and take on the superhero genre. It also feels like a spin on the typical magical girl genre. As rather than simply having girls transforming into superheroes and fighting evil, it has both teenage girls and boys gain heroic and superpowered alter-egos to fight crime.
  2. Speaking of unique, the mix of a Magical Girl and superhero-themed series for a Western show is really great (and unique, as mentioned previously) as no one has ever done this before.
  3. The SAMG-animated episodes have great CGI animation.
    • The animation for the series' spin-offs Tales from Paris and Miraculous Chibi is also pretty good, (with the latter of which also being very cute, and hilarious).
  4. Good and likable characters with unique personalities. Including (but not limited to):
    • Marinette Dupain-Cheng is a clumsy, cheerful, friendly girl with a huge crush on Adrien, as well as an aspiring fashion designer who lives with her parents over a successful Parisian bakery. She has a knack for taking the leadership role in situations that call for it, and is well-liked by her peers at her school. While she can be somewhat insecure and nervous as Marinette (particularly around Adrien), she's much more confident and assured as Ladybug.
    • Adrien Agreste is a kind, loyal boy from a rich family but with a poor relationship with his father due to the latter's distant nature towards his son. While compassionate, he can be a bit aloof at times, and works part-time as a model. As Cat Noir, he has a huge amount of self-confidence, and is quick to throw insults as well as puns. And while he makes it no secret that he's got a huge crush on Ladybug, he still never manages to notice Marinette's humongous crush on him.
    • Alya Cesaire, Marinette's best friend, is a supportive ambitious girl who aspires to be a journalist. She's confident, cool, and a little bit sassy, and never afraid to speak her mind. She always makes sure to be keeping an eye on Parisian trends and news. She dreams of being a professional news reporter, but until that day, she's practicing by running the Ladyblog, tracking Ladybug and Cat Noir's every accomplishment.
    • Nino Lahiffe, Adrien's best friend, is an occasionally immature but overall outgoing and fun-loving boy. He's one of the few people Adrien willingly opens up to, and aspires to be a DJ and a movie director. He often serves as the quick-witted, energetic, upbeat foil to his gloomier and more secretive and distant best friend Adrien. He's extremely loyal and wants the best for his pal.
    • Luka Couffaine, is a laid-back rock guitarist who has feelings for Marinette (which she has been mainly shown not to reciprocate). He's Juleka's older twin brother and serves as the cool and confident parallel to the former's shy and insecure personality.
    • Max Kante, is an extremely intelligent who's good friends with Kim. Easily one of the smartest kids in Marinette's class, he's a tech wizard (to the point where he's been shown to be capable of creating his own AI) and has also been shown to be an incredible gamer.
    • Kagami Tsurugi, is a stoic, skilled fencing student who's new at Collège Françoise Dupont. The heir of a high-profile Japanese family, as well as a skilled fencing student, she becomes a rival of Adrien, and later a friend to Marinette.
    • Alix Kubdel, is a competitive and tomboyish girl who's rivals with Kim. Spirited and athletic, she has a strong sense of right and wrong and both father and brother are historians.
    • Le Chien Kim, is a confident and competitive student who's good friends with Max and rivals with Alix. A hotheaded jock, he can be rude, but does have a softer side. He was originally part of Chloé's circle, but the later episodes have him leave said group.
  5. Extremely catchy and memorable theme song.
  6. The tone in the earlier episodes is fresh and energetic without feeling too cheesy.
  7. Great story about two teenagers with the ability to transform into superheroes and fight crime, all the while trying to balance that out with their normal lives in the process. And while it's far from the first show to have done this formula, it still has it's fair share of plot points and events that make it stand out in comparison to other shows like this.
  8. The English dub is straight on point.
  9. Speaking of which, the voice acting is very good, especially the French dub. The English dub is nothing to scoff at either, featuring a who's who of anime voice actors such as Cristina Valenzuela (who also voiced Homura Akemi from Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Mio Akiyama from K-On!, Nanoha Takamichi from Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, Robyn Hill from RWBY, Sakura Matou from Fate/Zero, Compa from Hyperdimension Neptunia, Yuriko Nishinotouin from Kakegurui: Compulsive Gambler, Miki Makimura from Devilman: Crybaby, Kotori Minami from Love Live! School Idol Project, Morgiana from Magi: The Labyrinth/Kingdom of Magic, Ishiguro from Mob Psycho 100, Nagisa Saito from Squid Girl, Hawk from Nanatsu no Taizai (The Seven Deadly Sins) Mao from One Piece, Killua Zoldyck Hunter X Hunter (2011), from Alicia-Lu from Sword Art Online, Rei Hoomaru from Kill La Kill, and Sailor Mars/Rei Hino from Sailor Moon Crystal and Bryce Papenbrook (who also voiced Caesar Antonio Zeppeli from JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Stardust Crusaders, Basile Hardy from Inazuma Eleven: Ares, Nagito Komaeda/Makoto Naegi from Danganronpa, Rin Okumura Blue Exorcist, Meliodas from Nanatsu no Taizai (The Seven Deadly Sins), Clay Sizemore from Soul Eater NOT!, Jack from MÄR: Märchen Awakens Romance, Inosuke Hashibira from Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba, Shirou Emiya from Fate/stay night: Unlimited Blade Works, Kagura Karatachi from Boruto: Naruto the Next Generation, Eren Yeager from Attack on Titan, and Kirito/Kazuto Kirigaya from Sword Art Online) as the leads.
  10. Hawk Moth is one of the darkest villains in modern Western cartoons. He manipulates the emotions of even some of the youngest Parisians, which is a very interesting and bleak concept for a supervillain. He also has quite the sympathetic motive for his actions (the reason he spends the series hunting Ladybug and Cat Noir in order to gain their miraculouses so that he can use them to resurrect his deceased wife, Emilie).
  11. Interesting superhero and supervillain names that are sometimes references to pop culture, like "Guitar Villain", and the supervillains themselves are entertaining and threatening.
  12. The moments between Marinette and Adrien can be romantic and funny.
  13. Great chemistry between Ladybug and Cat Noir (in spite of the two not being aware of each other's true identities). They've been shown to care for each other often, which is demonstrated when they fight crime together in their superhero forms. As they always make sure to look out for each other when cooperating in order to stop the villains.
  14. Season 2 only improved the series, because Ladybug and Cat Noir get some new powers, their relationship starts getting explored further, Nino, Alya, and Chloe become superheroes in some episodes, and we finally discover who Hawk Moth really is and his purpose of trying to take Ladybug and Cat Noir's miraculouses.
  15. The show's spin-off shorts (previously mentioned before in WIFOMAA# 3.1) Miraculous Secrets, Tales from Paris, and Miraculous Chibi are all pretty good side content for the show itself. The last one also manages to be one of the few spin-offs of a story-driven, action-packed show that is done well. As instead of relying on gross-out humor or unfunny comedy all the while having lazy and cheap-looking animation like most examples of this, it's instead just some fun slice-of-life adventures with cute chibi versions of the characters. In a similar manner to that of RWBY Chibi.
  16. Unlike most action shows, the heroes find very intelligent, crafty and strategic ways to defeat the villain other than just fighting, and these strategies may include illusions of something that would tempt the villain, or playing along with the villain's games until the villain is trapped.
  17. Several amazing and memorable episodes such as:
    • "Stormy Weather" (a good way to start the series)
    • "The Bubbler"
    • "The Evillustrator"
    • "Dark Cupid"
    • "Darkblade"
    • "The Mime"
    • "Gamer"
    • "Animan"
    • "Antibug"
    • "The Puppeteer"
    • "Reflekta"
    • "Princess Fragance"
    • "Simon Says"
    • "Volpina" (a good cliffhanger to conclude Season 1)
    • "Origins" and "Santa Claws" (excellent interludes between Seasons 1 and 2, Origins not only did this season end on a high, it was also a fantastic start in the chronological order of the series)
    • "The Collector" (resumes from the end of Volpina episode and it's a fantastic way to start Season 2)
    • "Prime Queen"
    • "Glaciator"
    • "Despair Bear"
    • "Riposte"
    • "Gorizilla"
    • "Robostus"
    • "Syren"
    • "Zombizou"
    • "Frozer"
    • "Reverser"
    • "Malediktator"
    • "Sandboy"
    • "Heroes' Day" (an excellent way to end season two)
    • "Bakerix"
    • "Silencer"
    • "Miraculer"
    • "Oblivio"
    • "Startrain"
    • "Gamer 2.0"
    • "Timetagger"
    • "Party Crasher"
    • "Truth"
    • "Lies"
    • "Gang of Secrets"
    • "Furious Fu"
    • "Gabriel Agreste"
    • "Guiltrip"
    • "Crocoduel"
    • "Optigami"
    • "Sentibubbler"
    • "Glaciator 2"
    • "Wishmaker"
    • "Kuro Neko"
    • "Shadow Moth's Final Attack" (an extraordinary way to end the fourth season and arguably the best episode)

Bad Qualities

  1. Some of the characters can be mean-spirited and unlikeable, including:
    • Chloé Bourgeois. The classic spoiled girl enemy of the protagonist. Bossy, arrogant and superficial. She continues to abuse the power of her family to be popular, She believes she is the most respected person just to impress her mother.
    • Sabrina Raincoprix (depending on your view). Chloé's best friend, as well as her assistant. she is a girl who always tries to make Chloé happy. Despite being innocent to others, she has repeatedly proven herself to be evil, such as the time she stole Marinette's hat model for the Hat Contest or locking Juleka in the bathroom so as not to intrude on the class photo. Her relationship with Chloe is also akin to a domestic abuse victim and none of the characters, except for Marinette once, intervene and try to convince her not to be friends with Chloe. In fact, it's treated like a positive thing when it's not.
    • Rose Lavillant (depending on your view). While being an appreciable character for being sweet to others, she can be somewhat annoying and childish most for some.
    • Lila Rossi. The new student of the Marinette school, so obsessed with the attention of others that she invents stories about her past. She is quite good at manipulating others, such as Marinette and Adrien's class, into calling them silly peopple.
    • Bob Roth. Father of the singer XY (Xavier-Yves Roth), very stingy and obnoxious, who tries in every way to hinder others to sell more albums than his son.
    • André Bourgeois. Father of Chloé Bourgeois and step father of Zoé Lee and the Mayor of Paris. He treats his daughter like a perfect child even though she's a jerk to the people around her and blatantly abuses his mayor powers to order people around, showing that he cares more about his power and family than the people of Paris which is probably the reason why Chloé acts like a spoiled brat.
    • Audrey Bourgeois. Mother of Chloé Bourgeois and Zoé Lee. She is an unpleasant woman who is liked only if she is exceptional, it is no coincidence that she is called the "toughest fashion critic in the world". She fires his associates in case if he gets mad about somewhat minor things.
    • Felix Graham De Vanily. Adrien's cousin, very rude and pushy, wants to get whatever he wants he wants, also willing to get others into trouble by Gabriel Agreste/Hawk Moth.
    • Zoe Lee. Chloes stepsister. while better when it comes to person to chloe shes a perfect Mary Sue who barely gets any flaws and gets everything she wanted in the her first episode.
  2. Whilst the show has an overarching myth arc, the episodes' action and romantic side is fairly formulaic (barring the season finales) and always follow this formula:
    • For the action side, a random Parisian feels misery due to something occurring to him/her (and it's even created by either Marinette's clumsiness or Chole's rudeness in some episodes), that Parisian becomes a victim who turns into a supervillain thanks to an akumas Hawk/Shadow Moth sent, Ladybug and Cat Noir defeat the villain somehow, the victim gets little to no memory of the event, its purified akuma flies away, problem solved. However, this can be justified as other Magical Girl series relies on this trope as well, as well if not worst.
    • While the romantic side, has usually, and even it did get a new status quo since season 4, that Marinette has either emotionally (and later turns into psychologically) crush with Adrian, with the same romantic misstep situation ensues (foiled by her clumsiness to try something with him), despite once again, she fully moving on from dreaming to get a dated/married to him. Due the events in season 3.
  3. Although the SAMG episodes look great, the animation done by the show's other overseas studios varies:
    • DQ Entertainment's episodes tend to vary in quality but most of the time look pretty bad.
    • Symbiosis Studio's episodes look ugly and rough with poor rendering and sometimes freezes to hide errors. They were fired by Zagtoon after their only season (Season 3).
    • Artage studio's episodes have a very low budget animation sometimes especially the notorius animation of Qilin.
    • Assemblage (so far, have only animated a Season 3 episode and some of Season 4 episodes) while not as great as SAMG, shows potential in quality.
  4. While the voice acting is very good for most of the dubs, the Korean dub was not well received.
  5. Hawk Moth's motivation since season 2 comes off as very similar to that of Mr. Freeze from Batman: The Animated Series, as both are villains who sacrifice their love in order to resurrect their coma wives.
  6. A lot of episodes tend to air out of order, especially episodes with plot points that were established in previous episodes that didn't air first. Through, the American airings start with season 4 has a bit improved, by moving the season 4 episodes who are plot-centric closer, than the original airings in France.
  7. Some people may argue that across the series Adrian/Cat Noir doesn't get enough love or attention. In the first season, Cat Noir and Ladybug are featured as famous duos and are both equally important in defeating akumas. The Ladybug and Cat miraculouses are opposites of each other and when introduced they are stated to have equal powers. However, for some reason Ladybug is shown to be more powerful with both Lucky Charm and Miraculous Ladybug powers and yet Cat Noir only gets cataclysm which most of the time is wasted or used as a distraction. It’s also unfortunate that Ladybug gets to choose who to hand the miraculous out to in the later seasons and yet nobody (not even Master Fu or Ladybug) trusted Cat Noir at all. They never tell him the identities of these new heroes, but for some reason Alya gets to know Nino’s identity and vice versa but not Cat Noir. He's nearly always treated like a sidekick, and rarely gets as much recognition as his partner (It happens, just not very often).
    • And that's not all, Adrian's life has definitely been shown with vast detail, with Adrian dealing with modeling, fencing, piano, Chinese, an emotionally distant/abusive father, saving the city, no real family, having to be perfect, the loss of his mom, barely any friends or free time, and yet still managing to be friendly and happy every day, the problem is this often gets glossed over without much too much afterthought.
    • Also, in the episode "Chris Master", Marinette is somehow labeled as the nicest child in the world, even though she broke into someone’s else’s house by climbing a wall, stole someone’s phone, abused her powers because of jealousy of someone else near Adrien (The Bubbler), took Max’s training opportunity because she wanted to get close to Adrien causing him to be the Gamer, harshly called out and humiliated Lila in front of Adrien getting Lila akumaizated, was harsh to Andre the ice cream man causing his akumatization, caused Juleka’s akumatization by not asking her if she wanted to stop the shoot but just taking her place because she got a little nervous, etc. But then, there could be a chance that the Santa in “Chris Master” is not the real Santa but part of Chris’ imagination if that were the case, then Marinette’s status on the naughty/nice list could be unknown.
    • It's also very annoying to see that Cat Noir gets caught by the akumatized in almost every episode and was even controlled by some of them and sometimes almost dies because of it, while Ladybug is almost never caught by the akumatized, making Cat Noir really more of a sidekick than a partner.
  8. Throughout Season 3, with Lila Rossi taking over her "mean girl" role, Chloé seemingly started to undergoing some character development and growing to be a better person.... but the season 3 finale throws it all out the window having her turn evil once more just because Ladybug refused to give her the Queen Bee Miraculous and denied her offer to aid them in defeating her Akumatized parents, becoming an antagonist once again... So much for a good redemption arc.
  9. With so many miraculous holders being featured and so many superheroes and allies for Ladybug and Cat Noir's, a lot of their introductions may seem a bit forced and rushed, and not everyone gets a proper time to shine or even much of a personality to make them stand out. With the exceptions of Ladybug, Cat Noir, Queen Bee (who later gets replaced), and maybe Rena Rouge and Carapace, nearly all of the supporting holders are basically extras for the team, with some of them not even getting solo episodes to showcase their skills to traits to make them stand out.
  10. This show has an awkward case of a Status Quo is God trope being used while there is actual continuity at the same time, especially was very exaggeratedly prevalent in season 1 due of the show genre's formula (see with Reason #2), but it was slowly toned down this trope starting with season 2, with the revealed that Hawk Moth being Adrien's father, Gabriel Agreste.
  11. This show does have a fair share of bad or mediocre episodes like:
    • "Lady Wifi" (forced writing for plot convenience and Chloe was more hateful than usual)
    • "Chameleon" (a bad way to start Season 3 and starts the temporary decline of the show)
    • "Animaestro" (this episode was Astruc complaining about the critics insult and judge the show, but actually they give to him constructive criticism and advices)
    • "Reflekdoll" (this episode shows that Catnoir can't use a different miraculous making him look like a jerk but Ladybug can control all the kwamis of the Miracle box and the fact which Ladybug and Catnoir have switched miraculouses is too fanservice)
    • "Weredad" (like Lady Wifi, it has forced writing and Tom Dupain was out of character and starts the decline of Marinette's character)
    • "Christmaster" (as Ladybug says "Less talk, more action", but it wasn't an awful episode)
    • "Feast" (this episode ruined a bit the lore of the show and the character of Master Fu)
    • "Stormy Weather 2"
    • "Ikari Gozen" (Marinette was at her worst and the first part of the episode was mediocre, but become decent at the second part with the debut of Ryuko)
    • "Puppeteer 2" (Adrien was out of character and his relationship with Marinette was at its worst, and there was only awkward moments with them especially the notorius which Marinette almost kissed Adrien believing he was a waxwork)
    • "Cat Blanc" (a fanservice episode which only created for to make happy the Adrinette fans, (the people who ships Marinette and Adrien as a romantic couple) and also made a BIG PLOT HOLE)
    • "Ladybug"
    • "The Battle of the Miraculous" (a bad way to end Season 3, as well as Chloé’s character derailment and Hawk Moth did a grave mistake only for plot convenience)
    • Miraculous NewYork special : United Heroez
    • "Sole Crusher"
    • "Queen Banana" (shows that Chloé became worse than she was in Season 1, Zoe became a Mary Sue, Ladybug gave to her a miraculous after know her from only one day and keep to often give the bee miraculous and is considered one of the worst episodes of the show)
    • ''Hack-San'' (Adrien is at his worst and was out of character when Scarabella appears)
    • "Simpleman" (an episode with the SpongeBob humor style, but this humor works with the last one, but with Miraculous doesn't)
    • ''Ephermeral'' (a fan sevice episode and a rehash of Cat Blanc and is also considered one of the worst episodes of the show)
    • "Qilin" (has the one of the worst animation in the show, it was a torture episode for Sabine and Roger was at his worst)
    • "Penalteam" (arguably the worst episode of the show)
  12. Sometimes, the animation falls into uncanny valley territory and even looks awkward at times. (The best example of this is Kagami’s fake smile in “Ikari Gozen”)
  13. The show had a temporary decline in Season 3 due to the overload fanservice only for to make happy the fans slowing a lot the plot, ruined a bit the lore, the characters were sometimes out of character for plot convenience and the main characters were flanderized
  14. As the series progressed, the tone became noticeably a lot more dull.
  15. Despite excellent, the theme song doesn't have a original melody because it's too similar to an italian song published in 1997 named "Laura non c'è". You can listen here https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=zs5G5qPudzo
  16. Jeremy Zag, the producer of the show, pay the VA of some secondary characters (like Rose, Juleka, Sabrina, Sabine, Gina and the Mayor) in the English dub, with an insufficient salary and they decided to quit the job, but the fandom tried to convince Zag to raising the salary with the hashtag #ZagPayUp, Zag used the excuse that he didn't know the problem, but lucky he solved soon the problem anyway and the VA decided to back thanking the fandom.

Reception

Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir was well received by critics and audiences, who praised the show's animation style, voice acting, characters, humor, and premise. It was reported that the show has inspired teens and adults to create and propagate Miraculous remixes, and many people liked that the show featured multiracial characters as with the film Big Hero 6. The series currently has a 7.7/10 rating on IMDb.

Trivia

  • The series was originally going to be an animesque made by Toei Animation along with Thomas Astruc, but it was later scrapped in favor of CGI animation due to complications when animating it in 2D. Through, the promotional video of the original 2D version of the show did end up used as part of a fictional 2D animated film based on the duo in the season 3 episode "Animaestro", in which the titular akumatized villain is no other than a fictionalized Thomas Astruc.
  • A live-action feature film based on the series and the franchise was in development, with Thomas Astruc and Jeremy Zag involved as writer and producer, respectively. It is set to be released in 2020, with EuropaCorp, Skydance Media, Lionsgate, and Columbia Pictures also involved. However, it got canceled and got replaced by a musical animated film titled Ladybug & Cat Noir and is set to be released in 2021.
  • Adrian's surname "Agreste" means "Rural" in French. it is also the French word for "the grazing butterfly".
  • This show has a miniseries (webisodes), which tells are the hints for the story arcs of season 2.

Videos

Comments

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