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Princess Tutu back to reviews
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Curiouser and Curiouser (Episodes 1+2)
Warning: As part of recent live blog experiment I have been binging on shoujo anime. Although I try to be fair in reviews this is definitely outside my interests and it will probably show.

Princess Tutu is a shoujo anime about a duck who transforms into a girl who transforms into a ballerina princess in order to collect portions of a young man's soul through the power of interpretive dance. I wish I could say I made that up but I'm nowhere near creative enough. This show plays out like a Lewis Caroll acid trip fused with Sailor Moon. More I couldn't tell you since it was only a few episodes before it felt like I was going to start vomiting rainbows and had to stop. There's girly anime and then there's GIRLY anime, and be ye fairly warned all you Y chromosomes out there this is most definitely the latter.

That said I can't let this go without acknowledging its merits. Lots of animes revel in their weirdness but Princess Tutu is so earnestly weird without a shred of irony that it manages to maintain a sort of goofy charm. Everything from its paper cut out puppets intro to its leotard wearing cat dance instructor is played so feverishly straight that there's really nothing left to do but grudgingly nod your head in approval. The characters are generally likable with Duck being genuinely funny and well voice acted (Jp) despite the low standards for her profession. Crazy eyes narrator man also turned in a good performance, channeling a vaguely threatening chesire cat vibe while doing his best to keep the plot moving. The exceptions to the rule are Mute, whose pure dedication to being stuffed shirt manservice is almost admirable (almost), and his perpetually scowling handler whose sole purpose seems to be interrupting potential romantic subplots.

To sum up there is no way in hell that I could watch this, but I definitely get the feeling that it's not unwatchable. If you have a high tolerance for weirdness and a love for ultra-cheesy magical girl romance you'll probably get a kick out of this show. It appears to have run for 30 episodes, enough length to develop its mind bending plot and characters. I just regret I'll never get that far.
I have to admit, if I didn't love Drosselmeyer as a villain the first episodes probably would've scared me off from the show. I'm glad I stuck with it, though—the plot is one of the most well-constructed I've seen in an anime once it gets rolling. It later becomes much less about the girly Magical Girl stuff and much more about deconstructing fairytales.
comment #1460 BrightBlueInk 8th Dec 09
I'm afraid that unless you've seen the anime all the way through, there's really no point in anyone listening to what you have to say on the anime as a whole; especially considering the dark turn the anime takes in later episodes.
comment #2371 169.139.217.69 27th Apr 10
I did exactly what you did and stopped watching after the first two episodes, but today I got back and watched episodes three to five to conclude this anime is not what you think it is: Most magic have lots of cute magic with a plot on top, but here it's the other way round.

Also: The option for a 'cheesy romance' is shot down in episode three, but Tutu continues returning the prince's heart without complaining or expecting anything in return, and if the monsters of the week are any indication her Disney ending is all but guaranteed.

But yeah, I based that on three more episodes. I'll post a full review if this series keeps me watching the whole thing.
comment #3549 supernova 26th Jul 10
The point of the cheese earlier on is to set up a world filled with archetypes and "cutesy" subplots, only to brutally deconstruct the gender roles, assumptions, morality, and simpleness of the characters. Rest assured, nothing happens the way you think it will. By its end, the show is anything but a magical girl romance. It's nothing short of an epic. If you can watch the first two episodes and name those good things about them, just put up with the sugar-ness for a few more and then watch the series get better and better every episode up to a thrilling conclusion that is anything but typical, fluffy, and normal.
comment #3750 bookperson 5th Aug 10
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