Anime / Kira Kira Precure A La Mode

"Let's・La・Mix It All Up!"

Kirakira☆PreCure A La Mode is the fourteenth entry and twelfth separate continuity in the Pretty Cure franchise. It began airing on February 5, 2017.

Ichika Usami's mother is coming home from abroad. To celebrate, Ichika decides to make a shortcake to give to her mom. Several failed attempts later, and a plump fairy named Pekorin crashes into her kitchen. Although unsuccessful, the shortcakes made by Ichika are filled with her heart, and a strange energy called "kirakiraru" inside the sweets spills out, which Pekorin happily eats. Unfortunately, a bad fairy named Gummy appears not long after. He was attracted by the kirakiraru just like Pekorin. Gummy steals all the kirakiraru from the cakes, making them all black. Through her desire to protect the sweets, Ichika gains the power to transform into a Legendary Patissier Pretty Cure.

Soon after, Ichika makes some new friends who also have an interest in sweets, and together they make a full team of Cures:

  • Cure Whip, Ichika herself, is the Pretty Cure of cheerfulness and smiles. Her imagination comes up with all sorts of animal-themed sweets to make.
  • Cure Custard, Himari Arisugawa, is the Pretty Cure of intelligence and courage. She's shy, but knows enough about sweets to be considered the "Sweets Professor."
  • Cure Gelato, Aoi Tategami, is the Pretty Cure of freedom and passion. An enthusiastic rock star and the singer of a local band.
  • Cure Macaron, Yukari Kotozume, is the Pretty Cure of beauty and excitement. An older girl who is perfect at nearly everything she does, and finds being a Cure makes her life more interesting.
  • Cure Chocolat, Akira Kenjou, is the Pretty Cure of strength and love. She is another older girl (but often confused for a boy), who is gentle and protective of those around her.

Together, the five run a sweets shop called the KIRAKIRA Patisserie, while protecting their sweets from other Kirakiraru Thieves like Gummy, as well as any other evil forces seeking the kirakiraru. Midway through the series, the Cures are joined by a shapeshifting fairy named Kirarin who becomes Cure Parfait.

Kirakira☆PreCure A La Mode contains examples of:

  • And Knowing Is Half the Battle: The first six episodes end with a cooking segment where viewers are taught how to make the dessert shown in that day's episode. For example, here's the one for the strawberry shortcake from the first episode. Accordingly, the recipes are published on the show's official website.
  • Animal-Themed Superbeing: Each of the Cures are based off of different animals. Rabbit for Cure Whip, Squirrel for Cure Custard, Lion for Cure Gelato, Cat for Cure Macaron, Dog for Cure Chocolat, and Pegasus for Cure Parfait. They even fight like the animals they are based on.
    • Cure Whip, based on a rabbit, has good hearing and powerful back legs, which rabbits are known for.
    • Cure Custard, based on a squirrel, can run extremely fast.
    • Cure Gelato, based off a lion, has one very lethal sonic roar which can knock out enemies hard. (Not surprising, considering Aoi is a rock star and in Real Life a lion's roar is loud enough that it can be heard up to 5 miles away.)
    • Cure Macaron, based off a cat, has cat-like nimbleness and fights in a manner akin to She-Fu. She can also shoot her nails as projectiles.
    • Cure Chocolat, based off a dog, has a strong sense of smell.
    • Cure Parfait, based off a pegasus, has the ability to fly.
  • Art Shift: The Eye Catches are much more chibi than the show proper. There's also the "town map" segments used briefly in the opening and episode 14, which are even more chibi.
  • Ballet Episode: The fourth episode centers on the Cures being invited to a ballet performance and trying to make some good delicacies for the leading lady in their gratitude.
  • Bigger on the Inside: The KIRAKIRA Patisserie's main cafe area is a huge circular room with a tall ceiling that's easily over four stories tall. This is in contrast to the modest, mini dollhouse-like exterior that wouldn't even be able to contain the generously-sized kitchen that the Cures work in.
  • By the Power of Grayskull!: "Cure A La Mode Decoration!"
  • Chef of Iron: This time, the Precures are legendary pâtissières as well as warriors.
  • Crash-Into Hello: While trying to battle Gummy, Pekorin slams into Ichika's face while she's trying to bake a cake in the first episode.
  • Debut Queue: The Cures are introduced one by one over the first six episodes, with episode 4 being the only exception.
  • Different in Every Episode: The Eye Catch changes each episode, cycling through a few different ones.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Ichika appears in the final episode of Maho Girls Precure, both to feed the reunited Cures and to give them a hand with a Monster of the Week.
  • Edible Theme Naming: In this series, the Cures are named after different kinds of sweets.
  • Five-Bad Band: Noir and his four generals serves as the antagonists of this series with the twist of not all of them being active at once. Julio is introduced first and is the Evil Genius. He's the first villain to discover kirakiraru within people and manipulates the Cures and the Kirakiraru Thieves as part of his experiments in order to create more kirakiraru and deliver it to Noir. Bibury is the Dark Chick, she enjoys toying and trolling with the Cures, treats her ally Julio (and took his idea of stealing kirakiraru during her run as an Arc Villain) and even minor characters with disdain and disrespect, and is purely motivated by her love for Noir. Grave is The Brute, physically the biggest and powerful of the four generals, but not too bright as uses straight forward tactics with his personal mook squad. Erisio is The Dragon, Noir's personal emissionary and is above the other three generals in status.
  • Food Porn: Being a sweets-themed Pretty Cure series, extra care is given to make the sweets look delicious.
  • Foreshadowing: In Episode 7, there is the flashback with Pekorin and her other fairy friends. When they are talking about Gummy and the other fairy thiefs, one of them mentions their worries for their friends studying abroad. Said friends are Kirarin and Pikario who went overseas to France to study sweets-making.
  • Gilded Cage: Aoi's house life. She lives in a huge mansion and has numerous staff to cater to her whims, but it is made clear she isn't comfortable. She has to act in a style contrary to her Tomboy nature and has to dress like a princess more often than not. In fact, when the other Cures made it to her mansion and rang the doorbell, the first thing she did was scream "HELP ME!" and open the gates.
  • Gratuitous French: The "A La Mode" in the title and transformation phrase; it literally means "in fashion", but in other countries (particularly the US), it means "served with ice cream", which is fitting for a series focused on sweets. Two of the Cures' names (Macaron and Chocolat) are also French words.
  • Hide Your Lesbians: The relationship between Yukari and Akira is about as subtle as a brick to the face.
  • "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight: In Episode 22, the Precures (Ichika especially) and Kirarin do this to Julio, who is in fact Kirarin's brother, Pikario, who was brainwashed by Noir. Ichika does this by reminding Julio of his love for his sister and sweets when she senses his true feelings inside of him. She succeeds.
  • Lighter and Softer: Compared to the previous two Precures, this season starts more like this, forgoing the high-stakes Epic Fantasy feel and focusing more on Slice of Life with cooking desserts and fairy thieves who steal their kirakiraru for the first 11 episodes until the first real villain shows up in Episode 12.
  • Little Bit Beastly: In Cure form, the girls get an additional pair of animal ears, grow tails and their shoes have animal feet features on the tip.
  • Local Hangout: The KIRAKIRA Patisserie, a cafe where all of the Cures work.
  • Meaningful Name: The Cures' first names relate to their theme color and their last names to their theme animal, with varying degrees of looseness.
    • Ichika Usami: Ichika can be taken to mean "strawberry flower", and when written in Hirigana, Usami is a portmanteau of "Usagimimi" meaning rabbit's ears.
    • Himari Arisugawa: Himari can be taken to mean "sunflower", Arisugawa contains "risu" which on its own, means squirrel.
    • Aoi Tategami: Aoi means "blue", Tategami as a word on its own can be taken to mean (lion's) mane, though it uses different kanji.
    • Yukari Kotozume: Yukari is an archaic form of "violet", the "zume" in Kotozume means nail or claw, referring to a cat's claw.
    • Akira Kenjou: Akira means "daybreak" and "bright", Kenjou has no obvious reference to a dog, but when combined with her first name, 'Akira-ken' may be a pun on 'Akita-ken', the Japanese breed of the Akita dog.
  • Mythology Gag:
  • Ship Tease: Between Akira and Yukari. A metric ton of it too. For starters, an old lady mistook Akira for Yukari's boyfriend as early as Episode 10 and Yukari just agreed with the lady while smiling. Then the two of them have a duet called Macaronage of Love and Excitement where Akira admits that she loves Yukari and for that reason is willing to accept everything that Yukari is, flaws and all. And then there's Episode 25 where Akira admits outright to Yukari that she loves her.
  • Shout-Out: The entire series seems to pay homage to Tokyo Mew Mew.note  However, based on an early look at weaponry, the series also looks like a tribute to Ojamajo Doremi. The sweet shop idea might also be inspired by Doremi's third season, Motto.
  • Stealth Pun:
    • The first ending says "Three-Two-One" as Cure Chocolat is shown on screen. The "Three-Two" part is actually pronounced "Suii-tsuu" (aka, Sweets) and "Wan" (One) is the sound a dog makes. Cure Chocolat's based on a dog...
    • Another in episode 8. It's shown that the collected kirakiraru can be remade into dreams, which makes them sweet dreams.
  • Story Arc:
    • The first 11 episodes have the Cures meeting up and opening the KIRAKIRA Patisserie while fighting off the Kirakiraru Thieves. This comes to a head at episode 11 with all the thieves attacking the Sweets Festival.
    • Episode 12 formally introduces Julio, and he fights the Cures with his experiments on kirakiraru. Each of the Cures also gains a special move, and Julio is defeated in episode 17.
    • Episode 18 introduces Bibury, another new villain, and she gives the first mentions of Noir, the real Big Bad.
  • Transformation Trinket: The Sweets Pact, which will only work if Animal Sweets are inserted, is what allows the girls to transform into Pretty Cure.
  • Victim of the Week: For episodes 12 through 17, Julio uses his staff to drain the kirakiraru from someone's heart, leaving that person unconscious (or in the final case, emotionless).
  • Wham Episode: Episode 12. After the Kirakiraru Thieves are purified, Julio disguises himself as a transfer student and outs himself as the current Big Bad to the Precure.
  • You Are Too Late: In Episode 17, Yukari tries to tell the others who Rio really is, but by the time they get to Ichika's house, she's already lost her kirakiraru to Rio/Julio.