Dec 18, 2007
Anomalous (All reviews)
Puchi Puri Yuushi, perhaps better known by its English title of Petite Princess Yucie, is a nice little series that is often overlooked for more popular shows, yet it’s just as deserving of attention. The story begins on Yucie’s first day of classes at the Princess Academy, a school for young girls from the five different worlds who want to become princesses or like princesses. The thing is, Yucie isn’t a young girl but a 17-year-old trapped in the body of one! When she finds out that one student will become the Platinum Princess and obtain one wish, however, her mind is made up to win the title. Watch as Yucie makes friends, learns about herself, and magically changes into cute outfits!

The story may be straightforward, but the execution is impressive. Most of the series is made of one-shot episodes about Yucie and her friends doing little things that bring them closer to their goal, but they’re each unique, taking place in different worlds and involving different characters. In addition, there’s a reoccurring cast with frequently-developed stories, such as those regarding their family life… and, as you would expect from a series like this, a sweet romance or three. Sure, not every episode is engaging or even interesting, but they definitely have enough going for them overall that makes them easy to enjoy. In the last few episodes, a serious plot develops, and while it will feel pretty standard to anyone who watches magical girl series, you can’t help but cheer for the cast to do their best and win. While there isn’t much plot substance overall, and what is there is quite predictable, it’s still a nice mix of fantasy, romance, and magic perfect for any shoujo lover.

The character designs are quite cute, and while they’re not amazing they match the series well. The creators weren’t afraid to make fun of themselves, either: Yucie is frequently mocked for her huge forehead. The animation quality is decent enough; nothing stood out to me either way. The music is also quite average, but overall fitting and likable, and there was a piece or two of BGM that really impressed me. Furthermore, the opening song, “Genius of Smiles,” stands out as incredibly catchy and cute, and is very much worth a listen even if you aren’t a fan of the show. These elements may not stand out, but they’re worthy components nonetheless.

The main five characters of Petite Princess Yucie are a solid cast. Yucie’s sweet optimism makes her a character that you can’t help but love, even if you are the type to get annoyed by magical girl heroines. The shy spirit girl Kokolu, feisty demon Glenda, and heavenly yet picky Elmina make a great circle of friends for her, while the final girl, Beth, is especially interesting as a character. That’s not to sell the rest of the cast short, though! Every last major character has a developed personality and grows through the series. I wish I could say the same for the rest of the cast, but it’s really only the five girls and their stewards (magical helpers) who have developed personalities. Still, the more one-dimensional members of the cast are just as likable.

Do you love cute things, magic, and fluffy fun? If so, Petite Princess Yucie is a great series that should defiantly be on your radar. Shoujo fans will find everything they enjoy about the genre in a series that’s more than the sum of its parts, while people who aren’t usually fans of shoujo may be pleasantly surprised. Sure, it’s not technically impressive or particularly epic, but Petite Princess Yucie is lots of fun to watch, and sometimes that’s all that you need. It may be a seven from a critical point of view, but it’s a darn high seven.