So we’ve got a few weeks in to this much touted new season of anime. While it would be unwise to draw any lasting conclusions from the first few episodes of everything, there’s certainly lots of potential not yet tapped. A prime example of such in my view would be Kuragehime, translated as The Jellyfish Princess.
The first thing that grabbed me about this show is the opening, unsurprisingly. In this case it’s certainly done it’s job. It features the show’s characters appearing in lots of famous movie scenes, like Gene Kelly’s famous romp through the rain in Singin’ In The Rain, scenes from Star Wars, the James Bond opening sequence, and others. The references to mostly western films are especially fun for us to spot – I was particularly fond of the nod to Mary Poppins. It sets up Kuragehime as a fun show full of character.
More than the animation of the opening, I very much enjoyed the opening song by chatmonchy “Koko Dake no Hanashi”. Not only did it fit very well with the pace of the opening animation sequence, it’s an absolute earworm. I couldn’t get it out of my head today. Chatmonchy are very good at doing that – they love their syncopated rhythms and catchy lead guitar riffs, and I love them for it. In fact, one of my favourite ending songs is also by them: “Shangri-La”, which was used as the ending song for Working Man (you may know it as Hataraki Man). The ending song is also sounding pretty good too.
The Jellyfish Princess is adapted from a josei manga by Akiko Higashimura. The josei demographic mostly consists of adult women, giving us a hint of what we can expect from the rest of this noitaminA show. Takahiro Omori directs, after directing such shows as Baccano! and Dullalala! It doesn’t look likely that this show will share quite the same pace as either of his former shows, but what it does have in common is that feeling that what you’re watching is high quality. It’s hard to describe this, but it made me think that Kuragehime was good despite a number of factors.
One of these factors are the characters as a whole. While we’ve only just been introduced to them, they’re big walking one-dimensional stereotypes at the moment, with the possible exception of Tsukimi (voiced by the dulcet tones of Kana Hanazawa) and our Shibuya “princess”. I do have every hope that these fujoshi will be fleshed out in the coming weeks, though. The trap was also a bit obvious, but it’ll be interesting to see how this situation develops.
Who knows how we got here, but it seems that anime with seafood in the title are faring the best at the moment. Apart from Kuragehime, I’m also very much enjoying Squid Girl (Shinryaku! Ika Musume) for it’s main character’s refreshing demeanour, almost like a dictatorial Yotsuba from the sea. Blog post incoming on that, hopefully.
The Jellyfish Princess currently isn’t available to legally stream, but it’s available from the usual fansub outlets.