A garden filled with magic, the home of Peppermint Rose...
Peppermint Rose was a series of candy-scented dolls created by Mattel and Those Characters From Cleveland in 1992, including Peppermint Rose, Lemon Kiss Lily, Merry Mint Violet, and Miss Vanilla Daisy. In conjunction with the dolls, a 24-minute TV special was made to introduce the characters and setting.
The special is an Origins Episode, detailing how Peppermint Rose started out as just Rose Richards, a normal teenager with an attitude problem who suddenly found herself recruited by a dragon named Petalpuff and a wizard named Brother Diminutive (Dimi for short). In the land of Peppermint Rose, the titular rose helps keep the land and all its flowers alive, but it was stolen by a group of ogreish beetles from the land of Bugoonya, who plan to feed the rose and all the other flowers to their Queen, Beeteelya.
Dimi couldn't stop them on his own, so he turned to the moon and its Maestro, Lunabright, who instructed him to nurture a rose and awaken its potential—he was expecting a flower, but Petalpuff brought back a girl. Rose isn't pleased at all about hearing she has to save the land, nor is she pleased when Dimi casts a spell to make her talk like an animal whenever she acts out of line. Rose is given armor and a wand, and with the help of her friends Daisy, Lily, and Violet, it's up to her to save the land from Queen Beeteelya.
This special contains examples of:
- Adaptation Name Change: The cartoon named Lily Lemon Drop Lily, while the toyline named her Lemon Kiss Lily.
- Alliterative Name: Peppermint Rose's original name was Rose Richards.
- Alternate Company Equivalent: The villainous beetles, especially the queen's design, call Nastina the spider from Rose Petal Place to mind.
- Animesque: Animation duties were shared between the US and Japan, leading to this.
- Big Good: Dimi is the main source of advice and power for Rose, though he takes advice from an even bigger force of good, Lunabright.
- Bratty Teenage Daughter: Rose starts out as this and has to learn to care about more than her needs and wants.
- Captain Ersatz: Peppermint Rose's character design, as well as her friends', is highly reminiscent of the previous American Greetings property Lady Lovely Locks.
- Care-Bear Stare: The Peppermint Glow song does this to the villains, opening their hearts and turning them good.
- Caught Coming Home Late: At the start of the story Rose is stuck at home because she was grounded for coming home late the previous night.
- Coming of Age Story: Rose learns through her journey to put others' needs before her wants, and grows into the caretaker of the magical world.
- Daddy's Girl: Rose tries to bribe Buddy with a check from her father, and afterward notes it's the first time she's gotten out of trouble without her dad helping her.
- Demoted to Extra: In the toyline, Merry Mint Violet was rarely seen and appeared in very little official art and merchandise.
- Duck Season, Rabbit Season: When Buddy Bug goes back on his word and tries to eat Rose, she confuses him by mixing up "gonna stay" and "gonna go," making him eject her from the trap.
- Eat the Camera: Queen Beeteelya does this when Dimi explains how the beetles eat everything.
- Evil Smells Bad: Bugoonya as a whole smells nasty, but the queen's smell is so bad anyone who comes near breaks out in sneezes.
- Expository Theme Tune: The opening song describes the land of Peppermint Rose and those who care for it.
- Floral Theme Naming: Rose and her friends are all named after flowers, and eventually become guardians of their floral namesakes.
- Heel–Face Turn: All the insects of Bugoonya turn good thanks to the Peppermint Glow song.
- Kidnapped by the Call: Rose is kidnapped by Dimi and Petalpuff at the start and taken to the land of Peppermint Rose, where she's tasked to save it.
- Magic Music: The Peppermint Glow song transforms the evil beetles into good ones and their weapons into roses, with the bonus of making them smell better.
- Mix-and-Match Critters: Petalpuff is a dragophant, half-dragon and half-elephant.
- Origins Episode: The special starts with showing how life in the land of Peppermint Rose is now, then showing how it got there.
- Out of Focus: Rose's friends are only seen at the very beginning and very end of the special, and don't get many lines or much characterization.
- Polluted Wasteland: Bugooyna is a desolate, terrible-smelling place without any grass, flowers, or trees because the beetles ate them all.
- Punny Name: The nation Bugoonya is a pun on the flower begonia.
- Random Events Plot: The plot is a pretty random sequence of events, particularly when Rose sees the fake pizza joint.
- Recruit Teenagers with Attitude: Rose and her friends are recruited to save the land of Peppermint Rose from the beetles.
- Refusal of the Call: Rose is resistant to save the land at first and has to be talked into it.
- Rhymes on a Dime: Queen Beeteelya and the other beetles generally speak in rhyme.
- Riddle Me This: Rose challenges Buddy Bug to a riddle contest in order to escape his trap.
- Scenery Porn: The special is lavishly animated, with the hand-painted backgrounds being especially pretty.
- Shed Armor, Gain Speed: Rose ditches her armor early on to keep it from weighing her down.
- Sugar Bowl: Normally, the land of Peppermint Rose is peaceful and full of the most beautiful flowers.
- Totally Radical: Rose escapes from Buddy Bug via a rapping riddle contest, and her favorite food is pizza.
- Toyless Toyline Character: The beetles didn't get toys, nor did Petalpuff or Dimi.
- Transformation Sequence: After wearing normal clothes for 90% of the film, at the end the girls gain their toyline dresses and hats.
- Villain Song: The Bubba Beetles sing a short one about trampling the flowers, eating them, and stealing the peppermint roses as they head back to Bugoonya.
- Villainous Glutton: All the bugs of Bugooyna eat everything, to the point that there are no flowers or trees left in their land and they'll happily dine on visiting humans. Queen Beeteelya plans to eat the peppermint roses, which would plunge the entire land into ruin.
- World-Healing Wave: The Peppermint Glow song spreads all across Bugoonya, turning the land beautiful and lush. When the peppermint roses are returned to their rightful place, the same happens to the land of Peppermint Rose.