tw for victim blaming, rape/sexual assault, pedophilia, internalized victim blaming, referring to victims of rape/sexual assault as “the unclean, the unnecessary, the unwanted,” attempted erasure/murder of victims, forcing someone under their power to ‘do anything’ for someone they don’t like (including offering sex), sexism, murder.
TL;DR: The anime thinks Ciel is “unclean” because he was raped/sexually assaulted. Plus, it does some other fail stuff.
So, the manga and anime are COMPLETELY different. Except for what happened the night Ciel met Sebastian, plus very few other details, I would think that they just took the plot and threw it out, and took the character designs and reused them for almost completely different characters.
The split was interesting enough that I actually watched some of it. They actually kept Grell as a transwoman! Then I got to the puppet episode, or episode 11, “His Butler, However You Please.” Now, I could go on about how they were horrible for mishandling a lot of elements only fans would care about. But there’s something more important that needs to be focused on. Note that I don’t remember things in order or very well; I’m just doing this to get the basics down.
In the puppet episode, their first offense is when Ciel is apparently so desperate for help that he tells Grell if she helps him, he’ll give Sebastian to her for a day and she can do anything she likes to him. Yeah, you read that right. ANYTHING.
Their second offense was with Elizabeth. She’s supposed to be an epic swordsperson. She somehow got kidnapped and knocked out anyway. Ciel and Sebastian go to save her. *hates sexism*
EDIT for clarity: Anyone can get kidnapped and knocked out. But who they are and what they can do does kind of dictate how it has to be done to succeed, and the anime treated Elizabeth like she was untrained and timid rather than accounting for her skills and personality.
So. They go. They save her. Whatever.
They follow the half-dead puppet butler into his master’s room. He collapses and they walk past him.
Ciel goes to speak to the master, who is actually this tiny puppet sitting in a large doll’s lap. It shrieks at him, “SNUFF OUT THE UNCLEAN, THE UNNECESSARY, THE UNWANTED!” over and over again as it runs away.
It turns out that it works for Angela, an Angel who is obsessed with snuffing out ‘the unclean, the unnecessary, the unwanted.’
This would be fine if it were just her, and it were about the horrible culture of the church. It isn’t.
Some back story before we continue: Ciel was kidnapped when he was ten. His parents were killed and his mansion burned down to the ground. The series never clarifies if he was raped or “just” sexually assaulted, but it’s pretty clear that one of the two happened. Other horrific things happened to him, but lets focus on those.
Now, later on in the series, Ciel confronts Angela and they have their supposedly epic battle of words. Throughout these entire episodes, it’s all about how children are “pure” and adults are “unclean” and have to be purified.
Again, this would be fine if it were about the evils of the church, and the series tries to put the focus on those.
But nothing will take away what’s really happening. Ciel constantly thinks he’s unclean, (therefore he’s also unnecessary and unwanted), and the series does everything it can to reinforce that. The only way to get rid of his “uncleanliness?” Let go of his hatred.
That’s right folks, the cure to “uncleanliness!” Just forgive and forget! Who cares that your parents were killed when you were ten! Get over it! Your mansion burned down? Old news! Kidnapped and all the horrible things that went with that? Totally irrelevant!
Seriously. Where the manga made Ciel into someone who made a deal with a demon to survive, the anime makes Ciel into a horrible, “unclean” person who is dragging everyone around him down to hell.