I don't think the new art styles are too moe and childish because they still look their age and the childish art style examples are Ojamajo Doremi and KinMoza.
They definitely are a bit more moe and childish than in the two previous seasons; I mean they look younger and more ~kawaii~.
Tbh I was never very fond of moe but since it’s getting huger and huger in Japan there’s no way to avoid it and you just have to accept it.
It’s hard to define moe, to me the raw meaning of moe is just cute little girls with either bubbly o tsundere personalities with a characteristic animation style.
They also tend to have a bit of ecchi or fanservice.
Since this is such a generic definition and the moe animation style can vary so much without stopping being moe is hard whether to say an anime is moe or not. You can say an anime is moeish just like the new season of Crystal but it’s really hard to claim an anime is moe unless it’s very obvious:
To explain myself better I’m listing a few with the ~level~ of moe in each of them.
- Madoka -> Slightly moe
- Yuuki Yuuna -> Slightly moe (more than Madoka tho)
- Love Live -> (Totally moe)
- Himouto Umaru-chan -> moe
- Precure -> (moe but not as much as other there are out there)
Also I need to point out that with every new release the level of moe increases so something that could be considered moe back in the day cannot be considered it completely today because it falls weak in comparison with the latest new moe anime (for example Madoka was considered really moe back in the day but now a days is not even remotely as moe as shows like Love Live).
I’m just posting this to say that an anime can have moe elements and not even be considered moe which is Crystal Season III’s case in my opinion.
Obviously this is just my opinion and not everybody can agree, but I don’t think having moe elements can ruin a show especially when it’s what saved it in the first place.
Probably the highest praise I can give Miraculous Ladybug at this point is that it’s a show which knows how to play to its strengths. These being: character chemistry and fun-combat animation.
At some point, I figure the creative staff realized they’d struck gold with the interplay and romantic tension between their two leads. As such, each episode is careful to dollop out at least one scene of charming flirtation or genuine drama between the titular Ladybug and Chat Noir to keep the audience begging for more, while never giving up too much too soon.
On an entirely personal note, I was surprised by the… physicality… expressed between the dynamic duo’s rendezvous. Though this might be the French influence and sensibilities seeping in. Keeping in mind that these characters are probably between 13-15 years-old; they often wind up pressed up against each other either by choice or by circumstance, straddling one another, getting their faces close together, and/or making “bedroom eyes” (either seriously or as a joke). One plot point even features Ladybug locking lips with Chat to rid him of a curse, and this is all treated very matter-o-factly.
Fights sequences take upwards of 50% in most story’s screen-time,
and (again) this is effort well spent given the sheer creativity of the
monster’s powers herein and the animation’s ability to effectively show them off. Miraculous Ladybug nicely sidesteps the “small world” feel a lot of contemporary CGI cartoons have with its highly detailed (albeit idealized) re-construction of Paris complete with gorgeous sprawling rooftops, fully modeled assets like cars or birds, and varied interesting environments to have pitch battles on.
That being said, I’m a bit bothered by the lack of injuries or any feelings of genuine peril in the show. And yeah, I get that this is supposed to be a happy go-lucky cartoon with an abused re-set button. But even Card Captor Sakura featured people getting seriously hurt or experience emotional distress due to the Clow Cards’ actions. In MLB, both the super-powered leads and civilians alike get knocked around into cars, fall off buildings, and splat onto the glistening stones of Paris with nary a scratch. Moreover, at the end of every battle, Ladybug’s Lucky Charm magically repairs all property damage associated with that Akuma’s rampage anyways. For all of the excitement of the battles, everything feels just a bit hollow because there’s been little in the way of demonstrated stakes or consequence.
I’m not expecting Madoka levels of grimness here, but some feeling of tension is appreciated and-