Manga: Fate/kaleid liner PRISMA☆ILLYA
aka: Fate Kaleid Liner Prisma Ilya
No, you're not hallucinating. It's real (and awesome).
manga of a well-known Eroge
, which features the Token Mini-Moe
of said game as a Magical Girl
... Wait, where have we heard this before...?Ordinary Elementary School Student
Illyasviel von Einzbern lives together with her older brother Shirou and their two Guardians, Sella and Leysritt. She is a good sprinter and enjoys watching Magical Girl
anime. One day while she is taking a bath, she ponders about being a Magical Girl
herself, flying around with magic, seducing her brother
, when suddenly...
Her brother comes into the bathroom... and is knocked out by a talking Magic Wand
, "Magical Ruby-chan". Through a combination of sweet-talking, lies, and brute force
, it tricks Illya into signing a contract with it to be a Magical Girl
. To make matters worse, Ruby's former master, a mage named Rin Tohsaka, then forces Illya to become her servant and help collect seven "Class Cards": mysterious relics with the power to summon the spirits of legendary heroes
, which are currently running wild in Illya's hometown...
It's largely an Affectionate Parody
, both of Fate/stay night
and Magical Girl
works, and doesn't take itself too seriously at first. Then it does.
An anime adaptation of the series aired as part of the Summer 2013 Anime
season. A second season (adapting the first half of 2wei!
) aired in the Summer 2014 Anime
season. A third (adapting the latter half of 2wei!
) is planned for 2015.
This series contains examples of:
- Action Girl: Illya, Miyu and Chloe are young girls who kick the butts of deadly mages and super-powered mythological figures.
- A-Cup Angst: The flat chested Sella freaks out in one chapter about her chest being so much smaller than the well-built Leysritt.
- Adaptation Expansion: The anime shows the first fight against Bazett in Luvia's mansion. The original manga only shows the aftermath, compressed within a few panels. According to the Word of God, he wanted the animators to extend it.
- Affectionate Parody: Takes the Crapsack World of Fate/stay night and turns it into a Lighter and Softer Magical Girl series.
- All There in the Manual: While the plot does a decent job at introducing it, a lot of the background elements in Fate/Kaleid can only be understood if the reader or viewer has knowledge in Fate/Zero, Fate/stay night, and Fate/hollow ataraxia.
- The identities of the 7 Cards can be gotten by reading Fate/stay night.
- Illya's father and Shirou's adopted father is Kiritsugu Emiya, a Mage and the protagonist of Fate/Zero.
- The Einzberns were an aristocratic Mage family that designed the original Holy Grail War, a battle between 7 masters and 7 servants to get their wish granted. Illya's high mana capacity stems from her rich bloodline and her nature as a Grail Conduit.
- The reason why Parallel!Shirou's Magecraft is identical to the Archer Card's is because the Heroic Spirit attached to it is a future version of Shirou himself.
- Alternate Universe Reed Richards Is Awesome: Two very notable examples pop up in 3rei.
- Shirou is more or less normal in his universe. In the third universe? He's projecting swords like his Fate/stay night counterpart and fighting on-par with Angelica.
- Sakura gets introduced as a part of a short flashback story. In 3rei, she's the user of the Fate/Zero Berserker Install.
- Alternate Universe:
- Prisma Illya takes place in an alternate version of the Fate/stay night universe where Fate/Zero never happened. 2wei! implies Kiritsugu and Irisviel murdered the other Einzberns and destroyed the Grail ritual in order to protect this version of Illya instead.
- Miyu escaped to the Prisma Illya world from a third universe that borrows from Angel Notes and the Heaven's Feel route of Fate/stay night. Participants of that universe eventually cross over to take their conduit back in hopes of using her to save their dying world.
- Arrow Catch: Bazett catches one of the magical arrows fired by Chloe in her bare hands.
- Art Evolution: In terms of quality, both of its sequels look much better than the Fate/kaleid. While 2wei streamlined the art style of its characters, particularly the eyes and faces, 3rei refined much of it, giving the series a modern look and feel.
- Badass: Bazett, who punches out more powerful mages, magical girls, and super powered servants with her bare hands.
- Barbie Doll Anatomy: All the girls' nipples and nether regions are entirely non-visible thanks to conveniently steamy baths.
- Battle Butler: Luvia's butler, August. In episode 8 of 2wei, he actually manages to hold off Bazett.
- Beach Episode: Chapter 18 has all the girls going to the beach for a bit of silly fun.
- Beam Spam: A popular strategy for the magical girls is to fire dozens of magical blasts at their enemies. Caster, as in Fate/stay night, takes it to absurd degrees by creating enough magical blasts to fill the entire sky.
- The Bechdel Test: Amusingly, inverted in the anime. There are hardly any men in the series (Berserker, some of the Assassins, Shirou and Waver Velvet, Kiritsugu is mentioned but not shown as is the Grand Master of the Mage's association in London) so the odds of two of them meeting and talking about anything other than anything other than the female main characters is astronomical.
- Biting the Handkerchief: Luvia bites her handkerchief in disgust while explaining how Sapphire abandoned her for Miyu.
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Inevitable due to the parody nature of the franchise, though this happens less and less as the "seasons" go by. Still, it sometimes results in gems like the following:
Suzuko: "Isn't this main character treatment?"
Nanaki: "This is pretty ballsy coming from a mere supporting player!"
- Brick Joke: Luvia, angry about the destruction done by Bazett Fraga McRemitz to her home, states she's going to think up a way to ruin Bazett as revenge. a few chapters later, Bazett's been billed for the damage, had all her credit cards frozen, and been reduced to an ice pop vendor.
- Brother-Sister Incest:
- Illya has a crush on her brother Shirou in this continuity as well, going so far as to contemplate using magic to snare him before one of the other girls does.
- Illya's "cousin" / sister Chloe also has no problem making out with Shirou against his will.
- Butt Monkey:
- Rin and Luvia usually get easily knocked out of fights, despite both being powerful mages. Even their A Day in the Limelight against Saber Alter eventually ends in them getting stuck in a hole underground.
- Shirou also ends up getting beaten up in almost every chapter he appears. And in Iri's family hierarchy chart, he's even below the maids.
- The Call Knows Where You Live: Illya's parents went out of their way to prevent her from becoming involved in the world of mages. Despite this, Rin and Ruby end up getting Illya involved in collecting the Class Cards from the long abandoned Grail ritual anyway.
- Canon Foreigner: Every character is a version of a Fate/stay night counterpart, except for Miyu and the Ainsworths. And Tanaka. As all came from an Alternate Universe.
- Cards Of Power: The Class Cards can be included, granting the user a Noble Phantasm based on the individual Card, or installed, giving the user access to the abilities of the Heroic Spirit the card is based off of.
- Cat Girl: Rin gets cat ears when transformed into Kaleido Ruby. Luvia meanwhile becomes a "Dog Girl" when transformed into Kaleido Sapphire.
- Characterization Marches On: Miyu's Broken Ace aspect is more apparent in the anime early on.
- Chekhov's Gun: Remember that giant swamp that Rin and Luvia fall into in 2wei? They use it later to catch Chloe.
- Clap Your Hands If You Believe:
- The magical girl powers work entirely on belief. For instance, Illya is able to fly because she thinks she can, and Miyu can't because she keeps getting distracted by the laws of physics.
- Defied Trope in 3rei, Illya realizes the Ainsworth family has taken away the ability for children in their world to believe/dream.
- Cliffhanger: At the end of 2wei: Miyu is taken by soldiers who are fighting the Holy Grail War from her Alternate Universe. To Be Continued in 3rei...
- Clingy MacGuffin: A contract with Kaleido Ruby and Kaleido Sapphire cannot be cancelled without their consent. And while they're happy to abandon Rin and Luvia, they absolutely refuse to let Illya and Miyu quit.
- Cloning Blues: Chloe is the suppressed memory/destiny of Illya as the Holy Grail conduit given form. She spends a good part of 2wei angry and bitter over not getting to be the "real" one.
- Clothing Damage: The heroines' outfits end up getting ripped apart by explosions and debris anytime a fight gets serious.
- Cool Horse: Miyu gets a Pegasus to ride on anytime she uses the Rider Class Card.
- Crapsack World: The world Miyu comes from, which is ruled by The Magocracy and quickly turning into a Death World.
- Crossover: Has one with Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha known as 'Lyrical Nanoha x Prisma☆Illya or simply Nanoha x Fate''.
- Curbstomp Battle:
- Illya unlocks a portion of her sealed power during the battle with True Assassin to nuke every enemy in the area in one hit.
- Bazett takes on Rin, Luvia, Chloe, Illya and Miyu at once, and the best they can do is fight her to a draw.
- Illya with Caster install vs Beatrice Flowerchild and her Berserker install. Illya never stood a chance. Also a bit ironic because normally the The Berserker class is WEAK against the Caster class because of their low magical resistance. Too bad for Illya, Beatrice installed a Berserker that BYPASSES THIS (THOR).
- Cuteness Proximity:
- Illya goes... a little crazy around maids.
- Nanoha in the crossover also sets her off, though not to the same... extreme.
- Dance Battler: Archer!Illya, due to using EMIYA's fighting style.
- Dangerous Forbidden Technique: Illya's dual wand wielding at the end of 2wei, which caused internal damage to her that Ruby had difficulties healing. She wanted to use it again in 3rei if she could get her hands on Sapphire, to which Ruby immediately replied that she is forbidden from doing so.
- Dark Magical Girl: Chloe, the rival "Dark Illya" who shows up at the beginning of 2wei. She turns out to be Illya's suppressed memories of being a Homunculus built to serve as the Grail conduit, and she'll die if she doesn't have a regular supply of Mana or someone takes the Archer Card that gives her form.
- She wasn't the only one either. Miyu is later revealed to be given this role with her backstory, however the main time she was against Illya was at the beginning when she was The Rival.
- Demoted to Extra: Central characters in Fate/stay night are demoted to minor roles uninvolved with the main plot. Sakura for instance is just an ordinary student Shirou hangs out with, and former Protagonist Shirou is just Illya's clueless big brother.
- And then we get to 3rei, where Shirou is a legitimate badass.
- Dr. Jerk: Caren Ortensia cameos as the school nurse, where she has a tendency to consider patients' injuries 'boring' and ask they get hurt much more badly next time they come to see her.
- To add insult to non-injury, she often tells visitors to get lost because "healthy people make her sick."
- Does This Remind You of Anything?:
- Illya's tears in her eyes pleading for Shirou to snap out of the drug induced trance as he pretty much forces himself on her.
- Darius' Blood Magic ritual involving Miyu's "legend" in 3rei, specifically climbing on top of her and stabbing through her hands to make her bleed and scream, is depicted in a manner that evokes rape imagery.
- DON'T THINK IMASINE (sic): Illya's advice to Miyu in regard to Flight. Miyu has difficulty learning to fly because her magical paradigm leans too heavily toward science.
- Don't Try This at Home: While Illya's team was wrapping up their Cloud Cuckoolander team member to prevent her from screwing up their cake:
Nanami: "Kids, be good and don't imitate this please."
- Double Knockout: Illya and Chloe's dodgeball match.
- Dual Wielding: Illya dual-wielding Ruby and Sapphire in an Eleventh Hour Super Power.
- Dynamic Entry: Illya seems to be fond of these at the ends of arcs.
- Easy Amnesia: Tanaka is introduced with amnesia.
- Empathic Weapon: Kaleido Ruby and Kaleido Sapphire are the Laurel And Hardy of Magical Girl weapons.
- Equivalent Exchange: It's the Nasuverse, what were you expecting? Seems to be averted with the Kaleidostick wielders, however.
- Possibly justified, in that the Kaleidosticks supplies its prana via Second Magic.
- Rin actually ends up expending most of her jewels, and is forced to take a job... As Luvia's maid.
- Erotic Dream: Illya has one about Shirou which leads to her kissing Miyu while she's still half-asleep. And then just digging herself in deeper.
"So-so-so-sorry, Miyu! I mistook you for my brothe... I-I mean not that I...! It's nothing like that! It was a dream! Do-ri-mu!
- Everyone Is Related: One page indicates that Miyu, Rin and Luvia know who Shirou is (even though they didn't know Illya.) And he looks like Miyu's brothernote .
- Evil Twin: Chloe from the second season, a dark-skinned version of Illya with Archer's powers representing Illya's suppressed identity as a Mage / Grail conduit. At first Chloe tries to kill Illya in order to replace her, only to move in as Illya's "cousin" after being defeated and develop a friendly Sibling Rivalry with Illya instead.
- Later we can learn that Chloe is a subversion as she is not evil but merely very dissatisfied with the fact that she took form on Illya's whim, purely because of Illya's paradoxical wish fulfilled by her own magical power, and that she might disappear completely if Illya's wish is ever completely fulfilled. With anger over something this serious, it is of no surprise she tried to harm Illya (to stop her from being able to fulfill the wish completely) and that she is very blunt with her (because she can't harm her now, and is trying to stop her from wanting to be normal again).
- Expy: Numerous characters in Prisma Illya are based on people in other Nasuverse works.
- Fanservice: Some Barbie Doll Anatomy and extremely magical skirts in the first season, and more in the second, of both the girls and Rin and Luviagelita.
- Invoked and exaggerated in the first anime special. Rin and Illya in gym clothes for no reason. Rin and Illya's magical girl forms analyzed in maximum detail. Illya in that cat costume, forced to take sexy poses by Ruby.
- Field of Blades: One shows up in Episode 6. That is Unlimited Blade Works, Archer's Reality Marble, and the source of his Projection magic. The most that Illya uses it for is summoning several of its weapons and utilizing its weapon experience ability to fight Saber face-to-face.
- Foreshadowing: When Irisviel mentions the Holy Grail War to Chloe and Illya, Miyu gives a surprised reaction. What makes this significant is that no one else makes the same reaction. Chloe's indifference is justified, while Illya gives a proper reaction of confusion. It takes until 3rei for this to get a proper explanation.
- Full-Contact Magic: Bazett's fighting style.
- Genre Savvy: Illya spent her entire life watching Magical Girl animes, and it shows.
- Gotta Catch Them All: The Class Cards...
- Gotta Kill Them All: ... but they've been manifested as Heroic Spirits, meaning they'll have to be killed before they can be retrieved.
- Gratuitous German: Rin & Luvia's spells. Also, Illya's attack callouts.
- Iconic Outfit: Card installers change into outfits the same as or similar to those of the associated Heroic Spirit.
- Illya and Chloe wear a modified version of Archer's red sort-of longcoat and armor when utilizing its install.
- When the Saber Class Card is installed, Miyu gets Saber's blue battle dress, whereas Illya becomes Saber Lily.
- The Rider install gives Illya a nifty Eyepatch of Power, whereas the Caster install lacks its trademark hood.
- Illya's Lancer install is otherwise identical to the original, however.
- I Just Want to Be Normal: Illya has a few moments of this, particularly after the powers sealed inside her start acting up.
- This infuriates Chloe, and Illya realizes this isn't just a slap in the face to her existence, but to Miyu as well.
- Miyu herself is someone for whom her brother wished this, since at that point she was too broken to wish for it.
- If It's You, It's Okay: Chloe needs to be regularly supplied with mana in order to keep from disappearing, and this is essentially her attitude when she explains to Illya that the two of them are the most compatible for the process. Also see Intimate Healing below.
- Imagine Spot: Luvia has one of those when Irisviel invites she, Rin and Miyu to spend some days at the Emiya household since the Edelfelt mansion was destroyed by Bazzet. Her line of thought involves sleeping together with Shirou, having a baby and marrying him.
- In Spite of a Nail: A lot events from Fate/stay night still end up happening despite Fate/Zero having been avoided in this timeline.
- Shirou was still orphaned and got adopted by Kiritsugu.
- A grail ritual of sorts still ends up happening in Fuyuki City, with the same seven Servants from Fate/stay night and even Wild Card Gilgamesh being summoned.
- Sakura is still a Matou, though it's not specified whether by blood or adoption.
- Intimate Healing: Chloe mana-drains Miyu by kissing her. She's not hurt, but the fatigue plus embarrassment causes her to collapse.
Chloe: "Thanks for the treat!"
- She then proceeds to do this to Illya's four friends and her teacher.
- The "other way" from Fate/stay night still exists, as Illya learns when she asks if there's any other methods.
- Invisible to Normals: Averted. When some of the girls from school first see Illya transformed, they recognize her instantly and assume she's doing some bizarre cosplay. Of course, they might have been somewhat distracted by the fact there were two of her...
- In 3rei, the castle of Ainsworth is invisible to anyone not in its close vicinity.
- Lampshade Hanging: A side-effect of Illya's Genre Savvy is that when she spots Magical Girl tropes at work, she tends to point them out. The biggest example, of course, would be Miyu's New Transfer Student status.
- Leitmotif: EMIYA. While Shirou himself is unimportant to the plot, a remix of his theme pops up in Episode 6 of the anime.
- Ironically, Illya's own leitmotif, Die Lorelei is absent from the anime. But then again, she does get her own Emiya theme, so...
- Let's Get Dangerous: When Ruby and Sapphire grant "guest" access to Rin and Luvia when they're up against Saber Alter. One would never believe that Magical Girls could be so Badass.
- Lighter and Softer: Fate/stay night is a visual novel where the main characters are constantly hunted in a dramatic Mêlée à Trois, putting their lives at stake. This manga, however, is light-hearted and focusing on magical girl antics. Illya is a healthy young girl with a normal lifespan, is enjoying herself immensely when she's not running for her life, and her and Shirou's parents are alive.
- The second "season" called 2wei is mostly the same, being full of light-hearted moments, even though there are some more serious elements like Chloe's existence, Bazett's appearance, and the fight against the 8th card.
- The third "season" called 3rei is much more serious. There are still a few comedic elements, especially in the Omake, but between Miyu being held captive by The Magocracy, Miyu's universe's Shirou being held captive and tortured by the ones who captured Miyu, and Illya's party being trapped in a Crapsack World, it is debatable whether this trope still applies.
- Limited Wardrobe: Averted, although Rin and Luviagelita tend to wear outfits of the same style as their standard outfits in the visual novels (Luviagelita wears frilly things, Rin tends to show off the Zettai Ryouiki in most of her outfits).
- Literal Split Personality: Chloe was born from Illya's memories up until she was 8 months old, having already gained the ability to understand communication and knowledge. The memories were sealed so that Illya could have a normal life.
- Luckily My Shield Will Protect Me: Rho Aias. Used by Illya to stop one of Saber Alter's Excaliblasts.
- Lucky Charms Title
- MST3K Mantra: In-Universe by Illya, when showing Miyu anime as she tries to teach her to ignore the science of things so she can fly.
Illya: "Well, it is anime, so you shouldn't think too hard about it..."