Follow TV Tropes


Everythings Better With Princesses / Anime & Manga

Go To
A Space Opera with Humongous Mecha still can be improved by a beautiful princess.

  • Historia Reiss from Attack on Titan.
  • In Berserk, the shy and innocent princess Charlotte serves as Griffith's Love Interest and Meal Ticket in his quest to have his own kingdom. For the setting and for the purposes of the plot, having a princess is as good as it gets. For the purposes of the happiness and welfare of her kingdom, on the other hand? Even though she's a Princess Classic, the fact that she falls for a Manipulative Bastard and eventual Dark Messiah means her impact on the story is unlikely to be positive in the long run.
  • Kuro in Black God is a princess.
  • The Six Flowers of the Hibiscus Shield (magic fairies living in Orihime's hair clips) became the Six Princess Shielding Flowers in the English dub of Bleach.
  • Bodacious Space Pirates has Gruier and Grunhilde Serenity, seventh and eighth daughters of the Serenity royal family, respectively.
  • Advertisement:
  • City Hunter: A good number of stories involve the protection of princesses of fictional eastern and island kingdoms from evil pretenders to the throne. And if they aren't princesses, then they're Ojou of a rich Japanese family, with either Evil Uncles aiming for their heritage, or being in danger of being kidnapped for a ransom.
  • Code Geass
    • The show largely subverts the stereotype, seeing Britannian princesses (three, thus far) fight and experience all cruelties of war just like their brothers. Euphie seemed to fit, with her naivety and struggle for peace, which only made her subversion the cruelest of all. Though what they did to Nunnally was pretty sick, too. Cornelia, who doesn't even start off well. She's vicious (and a virulent racist) from the get-go. Even if she does have a soft spot for Euphemia.
    • Advertisement:
    • Kaguya also fits, though not literally being a princess, she is the highest ranking of the surviving Japanese noblewomen, delicate, though spirited, with all the personality of a traditional fictional princess, and the head of the NAC, which governs the Japanese "on behalf" of the Britannain Prince/Princess in charge of Area 11. Though she's not said to suffer as much as the Britannian Princesses, all of her family are dead, and by the end of the series, she is the chairwoman of the UFN — composing of the countries of at least half the world - though at the cost of her self-declared husband.
  • Dai Mahou Touge is a twisted, savage, yet strangely hilarious subversion of the stereotype. Princess Punie Tanaka looks like the typical heroic Magical Girl princess, yet she’s a maniacal Big Bad Villain Protagonist.
  • Inverted in Digimon Adventure in the one episode when Mimi becomes a "princess" (though she's pretty much self-proclaimed). A bunch of Geckomon need her voice to wake up their lord, she seizes the opportunity to the fullest and milks the poor creatures for all they're worth. She becomes spoiled, betrays her friends and overall acts as a total bitch until a terrible nightmare makes her realize her wrongdoings. Notably that when she is reunited with the Geckomon later in the story (after some Character Development), she tells them to stop calling her "Princess".
  • Hyatt in Excel Saga is apparently a princess of some alien race, but this is never elaborated further in the series.
  • Flame of Recca has Yanagi, who Recca declares is his princess at the beginning of the series, and this becomes her nickname from then on. Later on in the manga, we learn that she's the reincarnation of a real princess named Sakura, who once knew Recca's father.
  • Fullmetal Alchemist
    • The manga mostly avoids the trope, but does have one character — Mei Chang — who is a daughter of the Emperor of Xing. She's only rarely identified in-story as a princess, however, and almost never acts like one; she's too busy being Badass Adorable.
    • In what can only be described as a subversion, there's also Olivier Mira Armstrong, whose mannerisms are about as un-princessy as you can get while still being a regal Lady of War. But in the manga, her men (the Briggs Bears) occasionally refer to her as "the Princess" and "our Queen" as a sign of their love and respect.
  • Fushigiboshi no★Futagohime, starting with the titular twins and encompassing most of the main cast. The marketing was all over this, tiaras and all: the publicity events were even called "Princess Parties" and they gave out kingdom seals.
  • Futari wa Pretty Cure
    • In an odd twist, the princess was a typical cute, mostly useless Damsel in Distress... and the mascot creature. Hikari from season two, however, filled this role more traditionally, despite being (somewhat) a Queen.
    • Elsewhere in the Pretty Cure franchise, Yes! Pretty Cure 5 added a Princess among an influx of royals. Yes, they were also mascot creatures.
    • In The Movie of Yes! Pretty Cure 5, the girls and the mascots visit "Princess Land", a theme park where the female patrons all get to wear ballgowns and pretend they're princesses. As you would expect, it seems to be a very popular place.
    • Smile Pretty Cure! gave the second power-up in the series the name "Princess Form".
    • Both Suite Pretty Cure ♪ and Happiness Charge Pretty Cure have actual princesses as heroines - Ako Shirabe/Cure Muse and Hime Shirayuki/Cure Princess, respectively. However, while Ako's quite the badass, Hime puts Tsubomi to shame in being pathetic. And then there's her mysterious Dark Secret...
    • Go! Princess Pretty Cure features, as you guessed it, Princess Pretty Cures. But despite being known as such, only one of the four has royal blood: Prince Kanata's recovered sister Towa Akagi/Cure Scarlett.
  • GoLion (Voltron) had Princess Fala (Allura), ruler of the planet that Golion protected who'd later go on to pilot the Blue Lion when the original pilot was killed off (or Put on a Bus in Voltron).
  • Grenadier contains a notable aversion: its young female royal is a crowned Empress, not a princess.
  • Gundam successors like toying with the notion - if it's not a princess, it's either a princess-in-exile or a daughter of an important official (usually either a scientist or government official) - and it's not uncommon for the princess to be the love interest of a major character, eithernote :
    • This probably goes back to Mobile Suit Gundam, whose Sayla Mass (real name: Artesia Som Deikun) is a princess-in-exile of the Republic of Zeon founded by her father. By the time of MSG, however, the former Republic is taken over by the villainous Zabi family and transformed into a "Principality", so her heritage doesn't do her any favor. Although Sayla doesn't really count considering her father was a democratic leader, and Zeon only became a monarchy after her father died.
      • There's also Kycillia Zabi, who subverts the trope in a big way, being more coldblooded & ruthless than all but one of her brothers.
    • Zeta Gundam and Gundam ZZ have Mineva Zabi, the last member of the Zabi family. She also features prominently in the [[Gundam Unicorn]] novel, and other (non-canon) adaptations. Initially Mineva is just a puppet, being seven years old and ruthlessly manipulated, but eventually she grew up nicely to help uncover the Laplace Box and stop the Third Neo Zeon War. By the way, how is she considered a princess? She's the last surviving Zabi, she should be queen even if she does need Haman as a regent. She's still a princess because Zeon is principality, not a kingdom. The ruler of a principality has the title of "prince" or "princess", depending on gender.note 
    • F91 has Cecily Fairchild, aka Berah Ronah.
    • Victory Gundam has Shakti Kareen.
    • G Gundam, the first show with a new continuity, also brings the first real princess, the very Moe Maria Louise of Neo France.
    • Relena Darlian (real name: Relena Peacecraft) of the Sanc Kingdom in Gundam Wing. Like Sayla, she is exiled, too, and comes with an evil brother. And like Sayla, her brother makes frequent trips through the Face–Heel Revolving Door.
    • ∀ Gundam: Diana Soreil is not a princess; she's the Queen.
    • Gundam SEED has two subversions: Cagalli Yula Athha is a legitimate but Rebellious Princess of Orb Union, while Lacus Clyne is not real royalty but her father is the chairman of the PLANT's supreme council. . She is also much more lady-like than tomboyish Cagalli. note .
    • Gundam 00 drives it to the extreme with Marina Ismail, arguably, an Expy of Relena and Lacus and an elected princess of a constitutional monarchy.
    • Gundam: Reconguista in G has Aida Surugan, who was the daughter of the commander of the Amerian Army. She's actually adopted, though her real parents were a disgraced political family from the Moon.
    • Mobile Suit Gundam: Iron-Blooded Orphans has Kudelia Aina Bernstein, who while the daughter of an elected Martian leader, she usually plays the trope straight.
    • Fact: it's easier to list those Gundam series without a princess or two, than those with them.
  • Miyazaki has this trope everywhere, seen in Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind, Castle in the Sky, Princess Mononoke, Ponyo on the Cliff by the Sea and The Castle of Cagliostro.
  • Dianeira in Heroic Age somewhat averts the trope. She's portrayed as pure and a borderline Messiah, but has a limited wardrobe, plot-relevant powers, and has had to do diplomacy and give people orders.
  • Kimi no Kakera, a manga by the same author as Saikano, subverts this trope, stomps on it, drags it through the mud, and shoots it. Icoro, the child princess in the story, has been reduced to little more than a servant to the people of the ruling Politik and Warmonger tribes after a political coup ended the monarchy and her parents disappeared. She bears backbreaking work, little food, and constant cruelty from everyone (including the talking stuffed animal that's supposed to be her companion) so that none of it will be forced on her little brother, the prince, who is also blind. The suffering common people that she meets later don't know about any of this, and on hearing she's princess, scorn her for the privilege they believe she enjoys. It's pretty much to the point that her being the princess is the root of all Icoro's problems.
  • In a variation on the frequent "Magical Girl as princess" theme, Himeko of Hime-chan no Ribon is an otherwise ordinary Magical Girl with an Alternate Universe counterpart who's a pink-wearing princess.
  • Averted in Lyrical Nanoha. Like many Magical Girl shows with a fantasy bent, female royals exist, in this case, from Ancient Belka. However, unlike many Magical Girl shows with a fantasy bent, they are not princesses. Instead, they are Kings that possess massive destructive capabilities that make them symbols of power that lead their country to war. Yeah, the title of King seems to be unisex for Ancient Belka. The main character adopts the clone of one of them as her kid. That said, Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha Vivid reveals that they are still referred to as Princesses before they take the title of King. The Saint family, at least.
  • Gratuitous princesses are taken to their logical extreme in Macross Frontier, where the writers don't let the fact that Princess Alto is neither nobility nor even female get in the way of making him the series's pretty little Rebellious Princess.
  • Mint from Magical Angel Sweet Mint is the princess of the show's Dream Land.
  • Magical Princess Minky Momo even has it right there in the title.
  • In several Mazinger Z series there is at least one princess:
  • Mako from Mahou no Mako-chan is the daughter of the King of the Sea.
  • Mahou Sensei Negima!
    • Konoka is technically the princess of Japan, though obviously that doesn't mean very much these days. Still, her heritage combined with the fact that her father (who is from the non-royal line, by the way) is the head of the Kansai Magic Association means that she has a lot of money and influence.
    • Arika, the princess of the kingdom of Ostia. She later becomes a Queen.
    • Asuna is also revealed to be a princess.
  • Guess who's a real princess in Mai-Otome? Not Mashiro, who is crowned queen in the third episode. Not even Nina, the real heir to Windbloom's throne (who never claims it). It's actually Mai, whose brother is the prince of Zipang — a fact often overlooked. And Mashiro is a subversion, not just because she's spoiled, but because everyone expects her to be responsible, and when she abuses her power, it never ends well.
  • Martian Successor Nadesico spent a whole episode late in the series establishing that Ruri was actually the princess of a cheap imitation (literally The Theme Park Version) of Switzerland. This episode was never referenced again, not even in Ruri's next Previously On narration in which she's too embarrassed to explain it. Also played with in the same episode, when she attempts to research the concept and hits a Magical Girl series with her first search. Her response is to narrow the parameters.
  • Mermaid Melody Pichi Pichi Pitch has another princess brigade, with seven nations being ruled by princesses who themselves answer to a spectral queen who rarely shows up. At least they're Royals Who Actually Do Something.
  • Murder Princess is yet another subversion. The real princess of the kingdom of Forland is a gentle Ojou but soon switches bodies with the most badass Action Girl in history, who proceeds to kick much ass and become the titular character.
  • The title heroine of Nadia: The Secret of Blue Water is a circus acrobat who performs under the stage name of "Princess Nadia", unaware that her Orphan's Plot Trinket identifies her as a genuine princess from a lost civilization. Subverted in that Nadia doesn't like being called "princess" because the word has bad associations for her.
  • One Piece has a collection, as well as having a number of princess-esque Ojou characters (like Kaya or Conis), has had a series of straight-up Princesses as well, with Vivi of Alabasta, Shirahoshi of Fishman Island, and now Violet and Rebecca of Dressrosa. For some inexplicable reason, One Piece princesses (at least crown princesses, since Violet is the exception otherwise) are always 16 when they are introduced. Maybe Oda envisions a Princess Classic as a teenage girl?
  • Princess Comet is the princess of Harmonica Star. Unsurprisingly, she dresses all in pink.
  • Princess Sapphire, the eponymous Princess Knight.
  • Thanks to the title, Princess Tutu seems like it'd play this trope straight... particularly since the main character Duck (or Ahiru) turns into the eponymous Magical Girl. But the show subverts this with an Aesop that Duck has to accept the person she truly is, and eventually has to give up the ability to become both Tutu and a girl (she's an actual bird). The Dark Magical Girl Princess Kraehe has a difficult home life as well (... to say the least). When Princess Kraehe shows up, Herr Drosselmeyer comments "Two heroines? That simply won't do."
  • In the first installment of Project A-ko, C-ko is revealed to be an alien princess.
  • Revolutionary Girl Utena, while not having any real royalty among its cast, thoroughly explores the stereotype and one of the main plotlines focuses on the titular protagonist trying to decide whether she wants to become "a princess" or "a prince". The series is also famous for postulating that all girls are princesses but there aren't enough princes for everyone.
  • Deconstructed in The Rose of Versailles, as Marie Antoinette thinks this trope is how she should live, which adds a lot of Irony to the series. How much she did in actual history is a matter of debate, but let's put it this way: Marie Antoinette liked to go to the countryside. She thought it was lovely and idyllic. Problem: No-one was particularly interested in disabusing her of this notion. So when she got there, it would be a sanitized version of the real thing; the cows were scrubbed, there wasn't a pat to be seen, chickens got fresh hay every hour on the hour (for pooping on, I mean), and such peasants as might have been lurking around were pretty clean and well-fed too. So when the news came that the peasants were revolting because they had no bread, it's almost a wonder that she didn't actually say a certain famous, if inaccurate, expression of her belief that the peasantry had access to sugary confections. Also note that this is one of the few series where the lead female, Oscar, is minor nobility.
  • Sailor Moon:
    • The title character turns out to be Princess Serenity, for whom everyone had been searching. In the manga and The '90s English dub of the anime, all the other senshi were princesses, too.
    • There's Princess Kakyuu in Sailor Stars. One gets the impression that the Sailor Soldiers exist to protect their planet's Princess, because when Kakyuu gives up her life to protect the Starlights from Galaxia in the anime, they go on a suicidal bumrush at the Big Bad to avenge her. Ironically, at the end they are the ONLY characters to survive without the help of Sailor Moon's revival powers.
    • There's also Sailor Moon's daughter, Chibi-Usa, who is heir to both the Moon and Earth Kingdoms, with a name to fit: Princess Usagi Small Lady Serenity Tsukino.
    • There's an odd aspect to this in the 90s anime, in which, whenever Usagi needs to unlock new powers or tap into the full potential of the Silver Crystal, she always transformed into Princess Serenity, despite the fact that she rarely needed to do so in the manga, and after the second arc always transformed into Neo-Queen Serenity when she did need to do so. It's almost like the 90s anime is enforcing the trope.
  • Pacifica in Scrapped Princess is a subversion as she is a pure-blood princess but must endure very harsh conditions, starting with the small fact that almost the entire world population believes that her head on a stake is a good idea...
  • Sgt. Frog: The second movie, where Natsumi became a sea princess. Keroro's hairbrained idea to get her back involves dressing the rest of his troops as princesses. And he tries it again in the third movie.
    • Momoka gets recast as an actual princess in the Musha Kero storyline. She is the Ojou, after all!
    • Anime Sumomo displays some princess behavior in her first appearance — the plotline is basically Roman Holiday with a galactic pop star.
    • Natsumi Princess Summer in Keroro RPG.
  • There's a few of these in Slayers, with the most prominent being Princess Amelia, a princess of the influential kingdom of Saillune. She's rather klutzy and a bit overzealous and in over her head, but she's an amazing case of Modest Royalty - kind, a willing fighter, and always enjoying traveling with her friends. There's also her opposite, Princess Martina, and her long-lost sister, Princess Gracia, otherwise known as Lina's old traveling companion, Naga the Serpent.
  • At least one of the female Spider Riders is royal, too.
  • In Stitch!, one of Stitch's cousins, Checkers, could sit like a crown on people's heads and give the wearer the ability to hypnotize those around them into thinking they were a beautiful princess to be obeyed (although in the original American series, it just made those hypnotized see the wearer as royalty).
  • Sasami seems to embody this trope the most in the Tenchi Muyo! universes. Aeka also has her moments, but isn't quite as sweet.
  • Lord Genome, immortal ruler of Tengen Toppa Gurren Lagann's pseudo-Empire, sired little human girls just for the sake of having a princess around. Lord Genome's princesses were born naturally from his relationships with girls hand-picked because of their special genetics. The result we see, Nia, hits this trope pretty damn hard in title, attitude, appearance, and usefulness (except for the fact that she is Hot-Blooded like NOBODY's business).
  • The Familiar of Zero: Henrietta is the perfect princess... but she doesn't spend much of the story as one, quickly becoming Queen and staying that way.
  • From The Seven Deadly Sins, there are the three princesses of Liones. From eldest to youngest, Margaret, Veronica, and Elizabeth.
  • The Vision of Escaflowne has some princesses who fit the stereotype and some who don't.
  • To Love-Ru has Lala, Momo and Nana Deviluke, all regularly identified by their titles. And Run Else Jewelria, whose status as a princess comes up less often because she's a less important character.
  • Guess who Esther Blanchett in Trinity Blood turns out to be in the end. Yes, you got it: the long-lost heiress to the Albion throne, of all places.
  • Sakura in Tsubasa -RESERVoir CHRoNiCLE-, and side-characters Tomoyo and Emeraude.
  • Yotsuba&!: When Yotsuba first glimpses tomboy Miura's highrise apartment:
    Yotsuba: Miura's house is huge! Are you a princess?!
    Miura: Yes. I've been hiding it, but I'm actually a princess. Listen, don't tell anyone, OK? It's a secret.
  • Rather disturbing example in Yu-Gi-Oh!, in Kaiba's virtual reality video game there is a princess whose appearance is based on Mokuba. (Probably Kaiba lampshading Mokuba's Damsel in Distress tendencies.) Naturally, Yu-Gi-Oh! The Abridged Series had a field day with this.
    Yugi: Just what the hell are you anyway? Are you a boy or a girl?
    Joey: Maybe it's a shemale. You know, like Bakura.
  • Princess Silver from Yume no Crayon Oukoku is the princess of the Crayon Kingdom.


Example of: