Japanese: Fate/kaleid liner プリズマ☆イリヤ
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Jun 22, 2013 to Sep 7, 2013
24 min. per episode
PG-13 - Teens 13 or older
L represents licensing company
Score: 7.321 (scored by 9514 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
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SynopsisSpin-off of Fate/stay night with Illyasviel von Einzbern as the protagonist, living an alternate life as a school girl. While taking a bath, she stumbles upon Kaleido Stick Ruby, who turns her into a magical girl.
Related AnimeAdaptation: Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya
Alternative setting: Fate/stay night
Other: Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya (2014)
Side story: Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya Specials
Sequel: Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya 2wei!
Characters & Voice Actors
Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya is one of those anime series where people may tends to look away just because for what it is. You know that saying that goes “don't judge a book by its cover?” Well, I guess some anime fans seems to do just the opposite of that and take the cover for granted. This is one of those anime series that might bring some disappointment at first especially to those loyal fans of the Type-Moon franchise. Series like Fate/Stay Night, Garden of Sinners, and a more recent example of Fate/Zero has a stance of that serious atmosphere going on. What does Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya have? More than what you hoped for.
At any rate, this series is adapted from the manga of the same name written by Hiroshi Hinoyama. An important note is that the series takes place in an alternate set universe that serves as a spinoff of Fate/Stay Night. Therefore, do not be surprised if there are some familiar characters making their spotlights in this series.
As far as this series goes, the premise is pretty straight forward. Illyasviel von Einzbern is indeed the main protagonist of the story. (for the sake of my laziness and ease, she will be referred to as 'Illya') For those who are unfamiliar with her from the Type-Moon franchise, she is foster sister of Shiro. However, there is a difference between her character and Fate/Stay Night. In this series, she is shown as a cheerful young girl who grows up in a seemingly normal childhood with friends and joy. Oh but that all changes one day when she makes a contract and becomes a magical girl. Welcome to your new life, Illya.
Even before becoming a magical girl, we can see that Illya is already fascinated with the idea because of a popular anime she watches. In that anime, there are magical girls. But never did she ever thought the day she would actually become one herself. For fans of Illya from the original series, this would be a delight because we get to see her in a much different way. But for fans of the Type-Moon franchise itself, you might also get a surprise with the addition of some new characters. Oh and Rin makes her return too of course in this series with her tomboyish self.
As some fans might guess, this series does have a lot of fan service and some tasteless moments. These usually involves awkward moments mostly from Illya because of her naive personality. Furthermore, her character is designed with extra doses of moe. Illya's battle design stands out that also gives her a touch of magical girl atmosphere. In fact, she herself admits the outfit to be embarrassing. On the other hand, we have Miyu Edelfelt, a new character that also serves the serious role of a magical girl. Unlike Illya though, she seems to be much more serious and quite mature for someone her age. With both magical and academic talent, Miyu serves as a character that seemingly exists the opposite of Illya. She is like the perfect candidate for a magical girl while Illya lags behind as the second rate. Or does she....?
With the help of a talking magical kaleidostick (Magical Ruby), maybe Illya can overcome her lack of self-confidence. After the contract is being made though, the magical stick plays the role of more of a mentor. Of course, themes such as becoming a magical girl, training to gain experience, and fighting/capturing cards isn't new to the anime industry. About a decade ago, a popular classic known as Cardcaptor Sakura also adapts the theme of a normal girl whose one day's life changes forever after becoming a magical girl. Other series with similar themes such as Shugo Chara, Magical Girl Lyrical Nanoha, PMMM, and the more recent Gen'ei o Kakeru Taiyō also shares similarities. The noticeable phase here is that Fate kaleid liner Prisma Illya plays around the idea constantly in both a cute and dangerous fashion.
If I had to use the word 'cute', this series would earn a 10/10 on that scale. But more than that though, the concept of collecting cards as a magical girl is indeed a serious role. There's no joking around because the enemies Illya and her friends face are dangerous. In fact, even around half way into the series, the girls' lives are put into danger when they face adversaries like they've never encountered before. Classic enemies from the Type-Moon franchise makes their appearances in alternate versions to present a challenge that really does put their lives in danger. In a series such as this, you might not take it serious at first. However, it is clear that the idea of collecting cards is a grim task at hand. On the comedy side, there's the love/hate rivalry between Rin and Luvia. Illya's behavior also might spawn a few face palm worthy moments because of her age and inexperience.
10 episodes. That's less than the average amount of a typical one core series. What that means is that the series may have to cut down some material or it won't have time to fit everything in. Luckily, the series is faithful with its adaptation. The only slight problem might be that the series doesn't have enough time to cover all the captures' every detail. This serves a double edge sword in a way. On one stance, 10 episodes could be rushed and leave out material fans want to see. But then again, the more detailed quality can bring out a more pleasurable experience. Oh and let's not forget there's still an OVA as well as specials.
The action is surprisingly fluid and presented quite well. I was surprised after seeing how this was adapted because of the amount of detail put into the actual fighting. The enemies are designed with a typical Type-Moon fashion but given a more dangerous look than fans might originally anticipate. In fact, a particular enemy that shows itself might bring out some shock to see how the character is presented differently in this series. The more important part though is that the action isn't parodied but rather as being serious. Illya's struggle at first shows her inexperience but there's development with her skills that is clearly evidenced later on. As for Miya, she shows her experience already as a magical girl but more importantly becomes both a friend and rival for Illya. As a foil to her character, the duo makes a formidable team along with those magical sticks.
As far as jokes goes though, I have to admit that some of it is a bit stale. Oh and the series doesn't try to avoid its fan service. There's the suggestive camera angles and skin being shown along with the loli expressions here and there. Some of the conversations between the girls and their peers also seems to be a bit forced in the comedy department. Even the first episode shows a bit of this along with cheesy dialogues. Among other factors, Shiro also doesn't seem to be an impressive character as his role is more of in the backgrounds. His denseness regarding his female friends and her own foster sister is also a bit frustrating to watch. By the way, he isn't even a main character. There's also some lewd jokes and misunderstandings here and there as well which should be expected.
The artwork isn't as impressive as I had hoped. Most of the coloring has a light tone but is covered with generic design. As mentioned before, Illya and Miyu are designed as magical girls and they really look like them. Their enemies are designed to give off a dangerous vibe although sometimes, I wonder what their real purpose is. The backgrounds are typical with a less-so realistic feeling to it. In fact, there's hardly any realism in this show. On the other hand, I do find that everything does fits within the concept of the series quite well, at least that much.
Color me surprised here but the OST is brilliant. Sound production met beyond my expectations especially in the action scenes. A particular battle in the later episodes gives off its intensity with the way it is presented. It has a balance of rock and techno that is pleasurable to hear. The OP song "starlog" by ChouCho also shows its strength with its choreography and some foreshadowing. Among the cast though, Mai Kadowaki gets a standing ovation for her performance. Returning as her role from Fate/Stay Night, the way her character stands out requires a more high pitch tone. I am quite grateful that she was able to pull the task off with brilliance.
Overall, don't entirely judge this series by its cover. Sure, it looks like just a typical magical girls series with cute girls doing cute things. But then when you look deeper into it, you might get a surprise. That surprise comes from the way it is both adapted and presented. I feel sorry for those who dropped this series from the first episode without giving it another shot. If you're a fan of Type-Moon's franchise, this should definitely be something to invest time into. Even if you're not fan of Illya, Rin, Shiro, or the others, it should be at least given a try for the first 3 episodes. Oh and there's nothing wrong with watching cute girly cartoons with magical girls. read more
TYPE MOON's Fate has become one of my all time favorite media franchises. Fate/Stay Night, the visual novel that started it all, and the anime adaption of Fate/Zero, the light novel series from Madoka Magica writer Gen Urobuchi, with their great characters and engrossing storytelling are some of my favorite pieces of media. Needless to say, I keep a close eye on all things Fate, so when I heard about a new anime based on the property, I was very much excited. I had, unfortunately, never gotten around to reading the Fate/kaleid liner Prisma Illya manga, though I had always found the idea of it curious and intriguing. A magical girl spin off starring Illya? As Fate fan with at least some interest in magical girl anime, it sounded delightful. Watching the show now, I can say I'm really not disappointed either.
To start with, the show is technically excellent. The art is pretty gorgeous. The characters are glossy and appealingly detailed. The action is smooth and visceral, with recent fighting sequences looking at least as impressive as something from Fate/Zero. It sounds pretty good too. The voice actors do a good job, the returning VAs from previous Fate anime a joy to hear again. Background music is quite good, and while I can't say either theme is super memorable, they're both good and very appropriate for the genre. Studio Silver Link really needs to be commended for a job well done.
What about the story though? Well, it's interesting. It definitely bears the trappings of its genre. If you have a distaste for magical girl, this likely isn't going to change opinions. Illya is a seemingly normal girl who is chosen by a talking magical wand to be a magical girl and fight battles to obtain cards that allow new powers, along the way contending with a rival magical girl. it's textbook magical girl and though somewhat self aware, its presented mostly earnestly. This is hardly Madoka Magica in terms of brilliant subversion and storytelling. In fact, on its own, the plot is probably objectively one of the weaker elements. It's presented well enough though, and with episode six it seems poised to maybe get a little more interesting.
When it comes to characters, the show does pretty good. Illya is the main character though she's not quite the same as her Stay Night counterpart. She's an enjoyable lead; earnest, sweet and believable as a young girl. Her rival Miyu is a fine too; she's the typical magical girl rival--an emotionally distant girl who slowly starts to open up and become warmer as her friendship with the lead grows, but she's cute and portrayed well enough. Stay Night heroine Rin is always a delight to see, and she's quite amusing here as Illya's sort of mentor, as is her rival Luvia, a ridiculous but quite fun character. The wand, Ruby, can get a little annoying at times, but has its moments. There are supporting characters, some from previous entries in the Fate franchise for added fanservice, but not many get a lot of attention. The servants from Fate/Stay Night, are utilized in an interesting way though, not as characters but more as the monsters the magical girls have to fight. While I'd say I do kind of miss having Saber as a major character, this does work pretty well, the familiar designs adding to the excitement of the fights.
It's hardly revolutionary, but Prisma Illya really is a lot of fun. It's cute, exciting, funny and has legitimately cool action scenes. Of course, it should definitely be noted that the anime is stuffed with practically every definition of the word fanservice. It exists as fanservice to Fate fans obviously, and non fans probably won't find much to get very excited about here. There's also some exploitative fanservice involving the main character, which considering her age can be disquieting and could be a major deterrent for some viewers. If you can at least stomach that, are a fan of Fate and have at least some interest in or appreciation for magical girl, you will find a very enjoyable, well made anime. Spelling it out like that, I imagine that means this is a show that will only really appeal to a rather small niche. For anyone in that niche, however, I would give this a very strong recommendation. read more
Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya is basically Fate/Stay night meets Cardcaptor Sakura. Just on the more serious side and with epic battles.
The main character becomes a magical girl. She must collect cards in order to use them. Each card has a different ability.
The idea of magical girls in anime series is nothing new. Cardcaptor Sakura and Fate/kaleid liner Prisma☆Illya both explore that territory. They both involve young girls who uses and collects cards in battle against supernatural forces. Cardcaptor Sakura's cards has a deeper meaning though but both series maintains the magical girl trope well.
The main female characters are inexperienced at first but later gets more experience with their partner. They're also shown to be kind and cheerful with everyone at school. Both series also has action along with comedy and drama. There's also a sense of competition among collecting the cards.
Both are about magical girls that use cards to fight with. Cardcaptor Sakura stays true to the essence of a magical girl story while Fate/kaleid is more of a modern spoof of the magical girl style of anime by placing the characters of Fate/stay night in a hilarious setting.
Both entail card capturing and fighting with the cards in order for this to be done. But Prism Illya is definitely a more serious version of Card Captor Sakura with badass fighting sequences and more!!! Main difference is that Prism Illya could be classified as more dark (dark mahou shoujo) as we see the struggles that Illya has to go through by becoming a magical girl and all the doubts and life threatening situations, while Card Captor Sakura is more fluffy and cute, without much violence or blood.
same setting, same plot about magical girl who hunting down cards with magical power to seal it, even the baton they used look similiar...
Both girls are just by chance chosen to be magical girls and they have to fight monsters to save their city and collect magical objects.
1)Normal elementary school girls gained the ability to use magic; they are forced to collect certain dangerous items (cards; jewels)…
2)Both shows have good ratio of light-hearted elements and action.
3)Protagonists don’t really want to become magical girls, but they’re forced to do so.
4)Both shows are also spin-offs.
If you’re a fan of magical girls shows, action and drama, then you might like one of these.
The first season of Nanoha (but also the rest of the series and movies) are definitely similar to Prisma☆Illya as they show a darker side of the mahou shoujo gender with intense fighting sequences and actual life threatening situations, its made clear that just because because you are a magical girl you cannot use the same lovu-lovu supaaar kawaiii raindow attack to defeat all your opponents, training, strategy and experience are a must. Showing the struggles doubts of the main heroine is also included in the packet.
What stroke me as the most similar element is the fact that the magical devices have a consciousness of their own and they can actually talk and communicate with their master. Apart from that:
Illya=Nanoha (MC that is always cheerful and finds the way to move forward through various events/discovering their potential little by little)
Miyu=Fate (the troubled and at first hostile/mysterious/rival character with the unknown past who then becomes best friends with the MC)
Opening Theme"starlog" by ChouCho
Ending Theme#1: "Prism Sympathy" by StylipS (eps 1-8)
#2: "Tsunagu Kizuna Tsutsumu Kodoku (ツナグキズナ・ツツムコドク)" by StylipS (ep 9)
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Related ClubsFate/Endless Reflection , For god sake stop scoring shows when no episodes are out!, Itou Shizuka Fanclub, Gladies, Type-Rn/Mobius of Echelon: A Type-Moon Roleplay , Daisuke Namikawa Fan Club!, Sol's Worst Anime, Itou Kanae Fanclub, Matou Sakura Shrine, Mahou Shoujo Appreciation
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