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Adrien Agreste

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Adrien Agreste
Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir character
The male protagonist of the series Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir
Adrien Agreste as he is depicted in his civilian form
First appearanceStormy Weather (2015)
Created byThomas Astruc
Voiced byEnglish
Bryce Papenbrook
French
Benjamin Bollen
Inspired byCatwoman
Information
AliasCat Noir
SpeciesHuman
(as Adrien)
Cat-based superhuman
(as Cat Noir)
GenderMale
OccupationStudent
Model
Superhero
RelativesGabriel Agreste (father)
Emilie Agreste (mother)
NationalityFrench
HometownParis
AbilityDestruction
WeaponExtendable staff

Adrien Agreste is a fictional character and the male protagonist of the animated television series Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir created by Thomas Astruc. He is portrayed as a French teenage student who has been homeschooled for most of his life and is also a model for his father, Gabriel Agreste, a famous fashion designer with whom Adrien has a distant relationship. After passing the test of Master Fu, who is later revealed as the keeper of the magic objects called Miraculouses, by helping him, Adrien is chosen as one of the two soon-to-be superheroes alongside Ladybug and receives a ring named the Cat Miraculous that, when worn, grants him the ability to transform into his superhero alias, Cat Noir (French: Chat Noir, lit. 'Black Cat'). Every Miraculous is accompanied by a small magical creature known as a kwami, with Adrien's kwami being Plagg, a black cat-like being. As Cat Noir, Adrien's signature ability is destruction. Adrien appears in most Miraculous media, including the main series, the comic books, and the official mobile game.

Adrien was conceptualized as a character that would appeal to everyone, having many good characteristics and being able to inspire the viewers. Regarding Adrien's superhero identity, since Ladybug's power was connected to good luck, Astruc concluded that her partner would have powers related to bad luck, which resulted in him thinking of a black cat. Cat Noir was also inspired by the comic book superhero Catwoman. Adrien is voiced by Bryce Papenbrook in the English dub, while Benjamin Bollen voices him in the show's French version.

Critical reception of Adrien has been generally positive, with writers describing him as a great, interesting, and relatable character. His relationship with Marinette Dupain-Cheng has been praised, both when they are depicted as civilians and as superheroes. Adrien has served as inspiration for cosplays. Merchandise inspired by him has been produced, such as action figures, accessories, and clothing items.

Development[edit]

Concept and creation[edit]

The appearance of Adrien Agreste's superhero form
Adrien Agreste under his superhero identity, Cat Noir. His creation was based on a black cat since Thomas Astruc decided that Cat Noir would be connected to bad luck.[1] Adrien's superhero form was also inspired by Catwoman.[2]

Adrien Agreste was conceptualized as a "modern" Prince Charming,[3] "with many good human qualities" and a "feminine part";[4] Thomas Astruc, the creator of the animated television series Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir, described these characteristics as a "perfect combo", adding that Adrien is "a really nice character".[4] He also characterized Adrien as "handsome, smart, brave, but also very sensitive", as well as someone that "everybody would naturally fall in love with".[3] When asked how Adrien and Marinette Dupain-Cheng had been developed, Astruc commented that he had wanted to "present sunny characters who could inspire people all around the world in this new century".[3]

Astruc stated that since ladybugs are associated with good luck, he had decided that Ladybug's partner would have powers connected to bad luck, and as a result he had thought of a black cat.[1][2] The creation of Cat Noir (French: Chat Noir, lit. 'Black Cat')[5][6] was also a tribute to Catwoman.[2] Astruc commented that Cat Noir's civilian identity had initially been a character named Félix, describing him as "an early love interest for Marinette" who would have had a distant attitude toward her and would have been included in the "typical cold-and-snobbish-guy anime trope".[3] He said that while the difference between Félix and Cat Noir's personalities would have worked positively, it would not have provided very good narratives in the long term.[3] Due to this, Félix was replaced with Adrien.[3][7][8] The idea related to the duo of the black cat and the ladybug was also inspired by one of Astruc's previous romantic relationships.[9] Astruc said that managing the situation created by Cat Noir's two identities alongside Ladybug's two selves in terms of romance was "a lot of fun".[3] He stated that pairs of superheroes like the one Cat Noir forms with Ladybug are rare in television series, adding that people enjoy the love game between the two characters.[6]

Cat Noir's chibi form appearing in the series Miraculous Chibi was created by character designer Angie Nasca while the show "was still in the development phase";[10] according to Nasca, "the series grew from those initial sketches" portraying the two lead characters.[10]

Jeremy Zag, the producer of Miraculous, stated that the love situation Adrien created alongside Marinette, their superhero alter egos, and their secrets are some of the main parts of the show.[11] André Lake Mayer, ZAG America's president of global consumer products, said that Cat Noir is one of children's preferred "relatable heroes";[12] she commented that the fans would "love taking on" Cat Noir's persona in the official Miraculous mobile game.[13][14] Nicole D'Andria, who contributed to the writing of a Miraculous comic book, described Cat Noir as a "fantastic" character "that everyone can look up to".[15]

Voice[edit]

An image with Adrien's English voice actor, Bryce Papenbrook
Bryce Papenbrook voices Adrien in the show's English dub.[16]

Bryce Papenbrook voices Adrien in the English dub of the series.[16] Papenbrook said that Miraculous is "a great show" with "fun animation and a lot of puns".[17] He felt that the show's English dub contains the most puns out of all versions of the series. Papenbrook stated that he enjoys "making those cheesy puns".[17] He commented that he was "sneaking as many cat puns as possible into the show", feeling "people love that".[18] Papenbrook said he loves Miraculous, mentioning that he knew "a ton of people [had] been waiting for that show".[18] He described the second season of the series as "really, really good".[18] He stated that he was "very excited" since Miraculous had won a Teen Choice Award.[19][20] Papenbrook felt that the Miraculous Chibi series is "exciting" and "looks really cool".[19]

Jared Wolfson, the executive producer of Miraculous, said Papenbrook has a lot of "energy" and characterized him as "a great guy".[21] He further described him as "very happy", "personable", and "energetic", stating that Papenbrook "loves what he does" and is "very passionate" about "being Adrien and Cat Noir".[21]

Benjamin Bollen voices Adrien in the French version of the show.[22] Thomas Astruc described the French cast of the series including Bollen as fantastic.[2]

Appearances[edit]

In the main series[edit]

Adrien is the male protagonist of the Miraculous series.[23][24] He is depicted as a French teenage student living in Paris,[25][26] who comes from a wealthy family.[27][28] He is the son of Emilie and Gabriel Agreste.[29][30] His father is a renowned fashion designer for whom Adrien acts as a model,[28][31] which grants him popularity.[5] Meanwhile, his mother has disappeared.[24][32] Even though Adrien has been homeschooled most of his life, one day he decides to begin going to school.[33][34] While heading toward its entrance, he notices an elderly man in need of assistance and offers to help him. Unknown to Adrien at the time, the man is Master Fu, the keeper of the magic objects named Miraculouses,[35][36] and this has been just a test to show who would deserve to become a superhero.[34] Due to Adrien's kind gesture, Master Fu decides to give him a ring called the Cat Miraculous.[24][37] After realizing he is in possession of the box that contains the ring, Adrien opens it and suddenly a black cat-like creature who presents himself as Plagg appears; he is a magical being known as a kwami.[23][38] When wearing the ring, Adrien can transform into a superhero with the help of Plagg's powers.[37][39]

Adrien is eager to transform and immediately does so.[33] His superhero outfit derives from Plagg's appearance, representing a black cat.[40] Not long after he transforms for the first time, he meets his new superhero partner, Ladybug, whom he rapidly falls for.[41] During their first meeting, Adrien introduces his superhero alias, Cat Noir.[42][43] Unknown to him,[44] Ladybug is Marinette,[45][46] one of his classmates who has deep feelings for Adrien.[47] At the same time, Adrien only has feelings for Ladybug,[48] while Marinette as Ladybug does not appreciate Cat Noir's advances toward her.[27][28] Cat Noir and Ladybug's purpose is to protect Paris from a man known as Hawk Moth,[49] who can transform people into supervillains.[50] Hawk Moth wishes to obtain Cat Noir and Ladybug's Miraculouses,[37][51] and he is actually Adrien's father without them being aware of this.[32][52] When he is Cat Noir, Adrien becomes more uninhibited and flirtatious compared to his self-restrained and modest usual personality,[27][53] and he makes a lot of cat-themed puns.[5] This transformation grants him new abilities.[24][54] Cat Noir's signature power is destruction,[24][40] called "Cataclysm".[27][28] His superhero weapon is an extendable staff.[27][24]

Adrien has a distant relationship with his father,[24] and he acts in a way that meets his father's expectations despite not being able to express himself because of this.[5][23] He has a varying relationship with Plagg,[24] but the two of them care about each other. Adrien has a generally positive relationship with his classmates, especially with Nino Lahiffe, his closest friend.[24] Adrien also has a childhood friend, Chloé Bourgeois, but he does not approve of her usual behavior.[32]

In other Miraculous media[edit]

Outside the main series, Adrien is present in most Miraculous media. He appears in the Christmas special episode,[55][56] where he spends his first Christmas without his mother.[57][58] He is also present in the Miraculous Secrets episodes,[59][60] in the Tales from Paris episodes,[61] and in the chibi episodes.[62][63] Adrien has appeared under his superhero identity in several sequences in which he has addressed to the viewers in a direct manner.[64] He is a playable character in the official Miraculous mobile game.[65][66] He is depicted in the official magazine of the series as well.[67][68] Adrien appears in comic books based on the show;[69][70] he is also present in other types of books inspired by the series.[71][72][73] Adrien will appear in a 2D OVA.[74][75] He is portrayed in live stage shows.[76][77] Adrien had been announced to appear in a Miraculous live action film,[78][79][80] but the film was subsequently changed to an animated musical film.[81][82]

Reception[edit]

Critical response[edit]

Adrien's character has received a generally positive critical response, with writers characterizing him as an "iconic",[83] "great",[3] beautiful,[84] "relatable",[3] and "beyond famous" character.[83] ComicsVerse's Michele Kirichanskaya said that Adrien's "character is essential to the overall charm captured by the show".[5] She praised that Cat Noir had been inspired by an existent superhero, Catwoman. Kirichanskaya stated that Cat Noir had been created following the "superhero logic", due to which heroes wearing masks "must combat superpowered foes".[5] She wrote that due to Cat Noir's "transformation scene", the "Magical Girl trope" present in the story is "not limited by gender".[5] Robert Lloyd of Los Angeles Times described Adrien as "an unspoiled rich kid who moonlights as a model".[35] He stated that "the male hero wears a catsuit, cat ears and a sort of tail", which "may seem a surprisingly foreign and/or feminine touch" to the American audience.[35] ComicsAlliance writer Elle Collins praised that Cat Noir's costume "makes him look like Selina Kyle's boy sidekick".[85] She said many people have "the false belief that superheroes are for boys", deeming it predictable that Cat Noir was publicized as Ladybug's "equal co-star of the show" although the initial title of the series had highlighted "the female character as the real star, with Cat Noir as her fellow costumed hero and possible love interest".[85] Collins stated she was "interested to see" whether Cat Noir had "a Magical Girl transformation" similar to Ladybug's.[85] Emily Ashby of Common Sense Media characterized Adrien in his civilian form as a normal child "facing typical tween troubles", such as "keeping up with school, making friends, and dealing with difficult peers".[86] Comic Book Resources writer Nathan Dodge described Cat Noir as "a stylish cat-themed hero".[87] Culture Honey's Laura Aasland felt that Adrien's character consists of "great" writing.[88] Emily Auten of Nerd Much? praised Bryce Papenbrook's voice acting, stating that Adrien's voice is done "especially well" along with Marinette's and regarding this as "definitely a plus since the entire plot focuses on them".[27] She said that Adrien's character is "very interesting", "especially in contrast with" his superhero identity, and wrote that Adrien is a "great" choice for a protagonist "even without the romantic subplot".[27] Auten characterized Cat Noir as one of the "best" parts of the series, and she stated that his "lengthy transformation" sequence never seems overly extended and is "fun to see".[27] Sergio Risquez of elrinconTV thought that Adrien being a model reveals his feline charm.[89] An El Intransigente writer said Adrien's character shows that money does not buy happiness.[23] Adrien was commented to "teach kids about confidence".[90] Cat Noir was described as Ladybug's "sidekick".[91] When an episode depicted him in a stadium, Cat Noir was stated to win alongside Ladybug against his opponent as easily as the professional football club Paris Saint-Germain F.C. did in the Ligue 1 French championship.[92]

Adrien's relationship with Marinette has been praised, both as civilians and as superheroes. Cat Noir's interactions with Ladybug have been commended,[88] being regarded as "absolutely adorable to watch".[27] Sergio Risquez said Adrien's chemistry with Marinette represents the main point of the series and felt that the secrets they keep from one another provide comic relief. He described the change in the gender roles as interesting, stating that in this instance the boy is the model, while the girl is the designer.[89] Michele Kirichanskaya characterized Adrien as Marinette's "crime-fighting partner" and described the "dynamics" between the two of them as "captivating".[5] She said Adrien's "romantic dynamic" with Marinette "contributes much" to the show's "drama and comedy", adding that the series "creates a love quadrangle by only using two individuals".[5] Emily Ashby stated that Cat Noir makes "a charming crime-fighting duo" with Ladybug and said "their relationship easily eclipses the show's action in entertainment value".[86] She felt that watching Adrien's relationship with Marinette evolve is "fun".[86] Ashby stated that the viewers "have to forgive the characters' naivety" and accept "that merely an eye mask and some cat ears" prevent Adrien and Marinette from recognizing one another.[86] She said that Cat Noir's crush on Ladybug "is a sweet example of young love".[86] Erika Brandenburg of Sinclair Clarion stated that one of her "favorite aspects of the series" is "the love square" that Adrien formed with Marinette despite there being "only two parties involved".[93] Emily Auten thought that the "romantic subplot" is made "even more interesting" by Cat Noir's crush on Ladybug, with "the chemistry between both of them being one of the many highlights" in the show.[27] She wrote that Cat Noir forms alongside Ladybug "one of the best duos" she had ever seen in a cartoon.[27] The love situation Adrien created alongside Marinette was stated to bring "a fun dynamic" into the series;[94] it was described as one of the "old clichés on the genre",[95] and was viewed as similar to "the classic Clark-Lois-Superman triangle".[35]

Popularity and merchandise[edit]

Paul Marciano, the chairman and chief creative officer of Guess, said that the viewers' understanding of Adrien's relationship with Marinette and their superhero alter egos make this series "intriguing".[31] A Snapchat filter inspired by Cat Noir has been developed.[96] Cosplays of Adrien have been created, both as his civilian self,[97][98] and under his superhero identity.[99][100][101] Meet-and-greet sessions containing Cat Noir have taken place,[102][103] including at a theme park.[104][105] He has served as inspiration for face painting,[106][107] and for an indoor playground.[108] A life-size wax statue portraying Cat Noir has been displayed at the Musée Grévin.[109][110]

Several pieces of merchandise based on Adrien's civilian and superhero forms have been produced, such as action figures.[111][112] Toys inspired by him have been created,[113] including Kinder Surprise toys.[114][115] Figurines depicting Cat Noir have been launched by Burger King,[116] and by Funko.[117][118] Pez candy dispensers portraying him have been developed.[117][119] Masks based on Cat Noir have been produced.[120] Clothing items and accessories inspired by Adrien have been created.[121][122] Stickers based on him have been released.[123] Items depicting Cat Noir alongside Ladybug have been launched, such as school-related items,[124][125] and beach-related items.[126][127] Sweets inspired by him have been invented.[128] A game based on Cat Noir and other Miraculous characters has been developed.[129] Other products inspired by him have also been created.[12]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

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