Meet Kilala, an ordinary girl who loves all the Disney Princesses. When she awakens a sleeping prince named Rei, she magically gains the power of the princesses! Rei is searching for the missing princess of his world, and has a magical tiara that will lead him to her. But before Kilala can help him find the missing princess and restore peace to his world, Kilala's best friend, Erica, is kidnapped by mysterious men! So, with the help of the magical tiara and Rei, Kilala sets off on a quest to find her!
Kilala☆Princess was partially published in English by Tokyopop, who published the first four volumes between January 9, 2007 and December 11, 2007. The publisher has been re-releasing the series since July 19, 2016. The final volume is set to release on May 9, 2017.
This is my childhood dream come true. The main character, Kilala, travels through all of the "Disney Princesses" world in order to collect gems for a magic Tiara that will same the country of Paradiso. In this quest she is assisted by Rei, a handsome blond boy skilled in sword fighting.
Kilala helps each of the Disney Princesses and they help her, giving her "princess advise". Each princess teaches her something different, and gives her a different kind of gem. The plot is very simple, yet sweet at the same time. Of course the target group for this manga are girls from 7 to 13
years old. So of course it's naive, ridiculously optimistic and easy, but thats how it's supposed to be.
The great advantage of this manga are the characters. Kilala is adventurous, fun, brave and kind, which makes her a very proper role-model for the little girls. And although no boys will read this comic, they could also learn a few things from gallant and honest Rei.
The art is very cute and done with precision. All the princesses look almost like their movie originals, and Kilalas' face is simply adorable.
For it's age group this is a very well done title, that I would definitively give to any little girl that loves Disney. And which one doesn't?
Ah Disney, how we all love thee.... We all know the movies, sing along to the songs, and they even know we are wiling to buy just about anything with their name on it. Within the past several years, the company has evolved from a company that cared about providing quality entertainment for the whole family into a company that will try and get you to spend every dollar you own on thier name. Its a sight that would even make Walt Disney himselef cry if he where alive today.
Instead of getting into a rant of how low the company has fallen, I will be
reviewing a product that was created from thier love for money. (Notice how I say “product” and not something like “series”.) Knowing how this manga was nothing more than a product of Disney’s greed to make more money, I went and read it anyways (even though i’m sick of the all of the crap they have made in recent years, excluding the movies by Pixar). So why did I read this even though I know the manga was going to be bad? Well, I love manga, I loved Disney when I was a kid (didn’t we all though?) and the first volumes where sitting there at my local library and I thought “Why not?”. Now on that note, finally the real review on “Kilala Princess”.
Story: Just looking at the cover alone, I knew this was going to be another one of those run of the mill generic fantasy shojo stories. Sure enough, it was. Girl dreams of being a princess, mets a cute guy, cute guy is trying a find a princess, stuff happens, the two fall in love, etc. (And in the end it is quite obvious the princess he is searching for is Kilala anyways) What makes this special is the fact that the Disney Princesses (Trade Mark sign here) are thrown into the mix. But for a generic Shojo story that was made to cash in on the Disney Princess line, its not as bad as I thought it was gong to be. I found it much more enjoyable than the Kingdom Hearts manga (and ive never played the games either, I don’t have a PS2). I thought it was going to be just pure trash with no real plot and just having Disney characters parading about to sucker you into reading it, like all the other crap Disney makes now a days. But no, its almost like both the author and artist are true Disney fans themselves, and actually tried to give us something somewhat worthwhile to read with the princesses we know and love. So they managed to surpise me there, but i’m dispointed they didn’t try a little harder to come up with something a lttle more original. Then again, this was actually made for a younger audience and not hardcore anime fans who have seen it all.
Art: I like the art here. It has a nice blend of east-mets-west. The Disney characters look like thier usual western selefs and not Japan-itzed into anime-looking characters. (I don’t have a problem seeing Western characters drawn anime style though. Sometimes I like seeing the change, it gives a nice new spin on an old classic.....when done right of course.) As for the original characters, sure they look like the usual shojo manga characters, even the two guys looking for the princess look alot like those two guys from of off Tokyo Mew Mew (I forgot their names, and i'm too lazy to look them up right now). But the anime characters are drawn in such a way where when they are standing next to the Disney characters they don’t look too out of next to a western-syle drawn character. So I give the artist a kudos for that.
Also, I like the placement of the pannels and how the arrangement of the art to tell the story here as well. It has a really nice flow to it when you read it. Its not a jumbled up mess with gaps in the story from one pannel to the next, like what ive seen in other manga series spin-offs of a popular franchise (such as Cowboy Bebop and Code Geass for examples).
Character: Lets face it, when we where all young i’m sure just about all of us girly-girls (or once where, like me) out there had dreamed of being a princess at some point and living within the world of Disney. (I sure as hell did. Even dressed up as a princess for Halloween in Kindergraden and imagined living in the world of the Lion King when that movie first came out.) Kilala here is alot like a refection of how we where when we where a kid, and wanting to live out our dreams. Shes also alot like the kind of character you would find in your average Disney Channel-made movie, except she actually has a brain unlike the mindless idiots you see in those movies anymore.
As for the other characters. The anime ones are like your usual shojo cast personality-wise as well. As for the Disney characters, I guess they where in character, at least more so than what it could have been. I’m just glad they wheren’t like a broken record and be like “dreams come true, just belive in yourselef!” or some crap like that like what Disney keeps trying to shove into our faces in recent years. Or something lame like Kilala comes along and helps the Princesses out and there happy again, happily ever after. So the Disney characters here seamed to be handled somewhat better than if they could be directily by thier own company.
Enjoyment: As for enjoyment, I thought it was a fun lil series to read, its better than I thought it would be. Not the best or most original manga ever, but I wouldn’t mind picking up future volumes and reading them (if I can’t find anything else to read anyways, theres lots of other series I would much rather read). If this product was American-made and not Japanese-made like how it could have been, then I just know it would have become the trash I was expecting when I started reading this. (This just proves that the Japanese know how to treat fans better than Americans do.)
Overal, I think this manga would be best enjoyed by shojo manga readers who still love Disney or by young girls who love anime/manga or Disney. If your looking for something original, you won’t find it here, the only thing original (and the only real reason why anyone would even bother reading this) would be for the Disney characters. And they do pretty well with providing this manga just that.
So for another money-making Disney product, this one isn't half bad. I can even see this manga still being made even if the company wasn't being driven by greed....
This story covers the entire manga, ie, not just the part that Tokyopop covered. Tokyopop only published the first two volumes; I read the Chuang Yi version of the rest. Because of this, there are some spoilers for what happens from volume three onward. You have been warned!
I'm going to be completely honest here, and say that Kilala Princess is very difficult to review story-wise... It's neither simple nor complex. While the basic premise remains the same all the way through, the goal of the journey changes so many times, it's hard to say what it's about. But no matter what the story is,
I will say this: it certainly isn't the most original manga you'll ever read.
The story stars Kilala Reno, who is completely obsessed with the Disney Princesses. Naturally, she dreams of finding her very own Prince Charming. Not long after the story begins, she does happen to find said prince... Sleeping on her lawn. The prince, Rei, is looking for a princess to save his country, and Kilala assumes that he's looking for her perfect friend Erica. But it's not that easy, as Erica is immediately kidnapped by the enemy, and Kilala and Rei set off to find her... Starting in the world of Disney's Snow White.
That's how the story begins, anyway, and to be honest, the main idea doesn't change much throughout the story. The main idea is that Kilala and Rei travel to the worlds of the six Disney Princesses. But the reason for the journey changes constantly... It starts out as a rescue journey, and, after a long sequence of events, turns into a search for the seventh Disney Princess to save the nation of Paradiso from being brainwashed by an evil "humanoid". Yeah.
I know that my description is confusing, and to be honest, it is. As I said, it's just incredibly hard to review the story as a whole when the story changes every couple of chapters. It's not even like it has story arcs, because they're all connected in a way. However, what does become apparent is that, despite the psuedo-complexity of it all, it still doesn't do anything that's really new. The general plot, whatever it may be, isn't something that hasn't been seen in other series. The Disney sections aren't all that great either... They seem to rely on the setting alone to make some sort of gimmick -- something that easily could have been replaced with something more original. It was nothing but product placement.
The art of Kilala Princess is very interesting. As you could probably tell by the cover, the art is a mix between shoujo manga and Disney Princess -- and to be honest, it works very well. In my opinion, Kilala didn't really look out of place when she was in the Disney worlds... It was impressive.
However, besides the mixture of the two styles, there was nothing particularly noticable about the art either. The manga parts were typically shoujo -- big eyes, strange hair, bishounen boys, cute animal sidekick... You name it, it's probably in there. The Disney parts looked like... Well, Disney. There's not much you can say about it.
The colored art isn't very different from the black and white art either. There's nothing special about the artist's coloring style... It was pretty basic.
And then, the characters. I'm pretty sure that everyone who has read this manga was reading it to see the Disney Princesses in manga form.
So, how are the Princesses here? Well... They were there. And that's about it. In general, the Princesses didn't have much personality, other than the typical "you can do anything if you believe" attitude. Sure, some of them were given different characteristics -- Cinderella was portrayed as being quite the optimist, and Ariel had her moment of thinking her father hated her, but that's about as far as their personalites went. (Though, I did notice that Belle was quite out-of-character from her movie self... In this, she pretty much took abuse from the Beast willingly, because she knew how kind he was on the inside. Umm... What? That didn't happen at all, unless we're counting Enchanted Christmas, which, by most people's standards, shouldn't count at all.)
So, then we have our original characters, and I'm sure it doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that they're nothing special either. Kilala, our main herione, is pretty stereotypical. Outside of being a Disney fan, there's not much else about her that hasn't been done. She's bubbly and outspoken, loyal to those she loves, and values love and friendship above everything. We're told that she's clumsy in one of the side panels, but we're never actually shown any examples of clumsiness.
The other characters aren't much better... Rei, our prince, is particularly bland. He starts out as critical of Kilala, but it's not long before he falls madly in love with her. Princess Sylphy, who is introduced in volume four, is just downright annoying. I'm pretty sure that she's meant to be the complete opposite of Kilala... She's just obnoxiously mean, and for no apparent reason.
I think that the most confusing aspect of the characters is Valdou. Valdou starts out as a strong but silent assisstant of Rei's, and in one of the side panels, we're led to believe that he has a warm and fuzzy center. However, in volume three, it's randomly revealed that Valdou is actually evil; he's the leader of the coup d'etat in Paradiso, and he's a "humanoid" who wants to brainwash the world to make a utopia. We're never told exactly what a "humanoid" is. I'm going to assume that he's a robot, but we're never told where they came from or why they want to turn Earth into their utopia. We're pretty much told that he's evil, and that's that. The character change was so random, and made such little sense, it was hard to believe.
All of the supporting cast (with the exception of Tippe, who is a mouse, so I don't have to go into detail with her), is completely thrown out the window after a chapter or so, so they don't even deserve a mention.
I suppose it would seem that I really hated this manga, huh? To be honest, I didn't. Despite the glaring amount of faults that it had, I still didn't totally hate it. I suppose that, in its defense, it's still a kids' series, aimed at girls between the ages of 8 and 12. I wasn't expecting much when I began reading it, and it met all of my expectations perfectly. It was nothing special, but there was something about it that made it entertaining while I was reading it.
As for recommendations... I'd recommend this to those who enjoy sugary, magical girl series, and/or those who like Disney. It's not going to be the greatest thing you'll ever read, but if you're not expecting that, it may still be fun.
(Thanks for reading, and sorry if my story review was confusing. I know it confused me!)