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Anime / The Legend of Snow White

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The Legend of Snow White (白雪姫の伝説 Shirayuki Hime no Densetsu in Japanese, La leggenda di Biancaneve in Italian) is a 1994-1995 Japanese-Italian co-production anime based on the Grimm Brothers' most famous fairy tale, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. It considerably expands Snow White's story over its 52 episodes, adding Fantasy elements much beyond the basic Fairy Tale scope.

It's a lovely day in the kingdom of the Emerald Valley, a beautiful princess is born. Her parents, King Conrad and Queen Isabelle, name her Snow White. The little girl grows loved, happy and healthy, and she is offered three pets on her fourth birthday: a puppy, a cat and a dove. Soon, Queen Isabelle falls ill and dies.

King Conrad marries Lady Chrystal and makes her the new Queen. Queen Chrystal turns out to be not only an evil, selfish, ambitious step-mother, she also practices the black arts of witchcraft. After the King departs for war, she makes Snow White's life a hell as she is jealous of her famed beauty after her magic mirror told her Snow White is the most beautiful woman in the whole kingdom.

Thanks to Queen Chrystal's huntsman being unable to follow the order to kill Snow White, the princess flees in the forest and ends up in a cosy little cottage, which is home to seven dwarves. She befriends them and eventually makes their life happier, gaining trusted allies to protect her from Queen Chrystal's wrath.

The Legend of Snow White provides examples of:

  • Evil Laugh: Queen Chrystal has at least one per episode she appears in.
  • Expy: The little people family Cathy belongs to are clearly based on The Borrowers, as they live by "borrowing" stuff to the humans (dwarves here) without permission. They give it back to them when it's of no use anymore.
  • God Save Us from the Queen!: Queen Chrystal is both a Wicked Stepmother and Evil Sorceress.
    • The Ice Queen to some extent, though she's considerably nicer once she turns into a cloud and a rainbow.
  • The Good King: King Conrad is the respected ruler of his kingdom, and he and Queen Isabelle are genuinely Good Parents.
  • Grand Theft Me: Queen Chrystal isn't actually Queen Chrystal, but someone who stole her body. And now wants Snow White's.
  • Heroic Sacrifice:
    • When the forest is petrified (see below), the dwarves use what little time they have for a ritual that will protect Snow White from the curse.
    • When Queen Chrystal comes in disguise to finish the job by way of poisoned apple, Snow White is tipped-off about it, as well as the information that she's carrying the petrifying staff. To get the Queen to lower her guard, Snow White sacrifices herself by biting into the apple, and uses the last of her strength to go for the staff while the Queen is celebrating her victory, which de-petrifies the kingdom and her friends.
  • An Ice Person: The Ice Queen, of course. She reigns over an ice-made kingdom, commands winged lions that are made of ice and summons blizzards.
  • Our Dwarves Are Different: The Seven Dwarves have a personality range that is quite similar to Disney's version of the story: the oldest is the Smart Guy, there's a shy one, a grouchy one and another one who's the youngest. The latter is clumsy, beardless and quite naive (though he speaks and never comes close to Dopey's Ambiguous Disorder/Cloudcuckooland and regularly throws tantrums).
  • Poor Communication Kills: The Ice Queen doesn't even let Snow White and the dwarves explain why they have come to her kingdom by accident, which leads to the destruction of her kingdom once they invoke The Power of the Sun to counter the blizzard she threw at them.
  • Solid Clouds: The Ice Queen's kingdom turns into clouds after its collapse, and Snow White and the dwarves stand on them without falling.
  • Some Kind of Force Field: The "Magic Filter of the Fog with Seven Colors" prevents curses and malefic beings from entering the forest where the dwarves and Snow White live. It prevents Queen Chrystal's Magic Mirror from seeing Snow White, but her pet bat still finds a way to get through it.
  • Taken for Granite: Jonas the magician can turn anything to stone with his Magic Staff. Queen Chrystal has her bat pet steal the staff, and uses it as one of her ultimate attempts to get rid of Snow White, and to one of the scariest extents of the trope ever. She turns the forest and half of the kingdom into stone, and not just living beings, but everything from ground to trees. Only flying beings that have no contact with the ground can escape the curse.
  • Wacky Wayside Tribe: Some of the situations Snow White and the dwarves find themselves confronted to fall in this category, adding nothing much to the main plot.