Kuragehime Review — B

The main character of Kuragehime (海月姫 – Jellyfish Princess), Tsukimi, is a young, nerdy woman who is obsessed with jellyfish, her fellow dormmates with equally esoteric obsessions. It follows Tsukimi’s relationship with two brothers in a neighboring rich famil: Kuranosuke, a popular high school transvestite, and Shuu,  thirty year-old virgin, on a course to follow his father and uncle’s footsteps into politics. Tsukimi’s house is going to be shut down for redevelopment, and loosely follows their attempts to prevent their eviction.

With this setup, I was expecting lots of drama / romance combined with crude crossdressing humor and a supporting cast of single joke caricatures (Tsukimi’s nerdy doormmates). I held out some hope since the show was in the noitanimA timeslot and and was pleasantly surprised. The romance is nice and subtle, eschewing the usual over-the-top confessions and misunderstandings for a slow, understated development between the three characters. There’s sufficient drama to keep the show going (I especially enjoyed Shuu’s “affair”). There’s no real conclusion, since the creators only had ten episodes to work with, but I considered the ending satisfying, aside from the romance angle. Kuranosuke’s cross-dressing is done quite nicely and actually didn’t bother me- it is well explained and the reactions by the other characters are quite believable (well, except for the prime minister).

Some of the shoujo / josei cliches which annoy me the most did make their way into the show though. Namely the Cinderella effect, where Tsukimi changes clothes and puts on makeup and is suddenly the most beautiful woman in the city. It is believable; since she literally puts no effort whatsoever into her appearance most of the time, and Kuranosuke is an expert in dressing up. It still annoys me though. Actually the entire subplot about dresses and making the jellyfish dress bored me. But, I suppose I’m not the target audience. Also, the supporting characters are not well developed, especially Tsukimi’s dormmates and the prime minister. Every time the prime minister showed up I just hit myself on the head. But these single jokes were used quite well, especially the girl who liked old men and the one with the afro. And I think I probably would have appreciated Maya more if I actually knew anything about the Three Kingdoms.

  • Plot / Script – 8 / 10 – Simple and to the point story with good use of humor.
  • Characters – 9 / 10 – The main characters are well flushed out along with a few side characters (the redeveloper who tricks Shuu, Shuu’s driver).
  • Production – Visual – 6 / 10 – Consistent and acceptable, but nothing special.
  • Production – Auditory – 7 / 10 – Nice OP.
  • Overall – B

Voice Actor of the Show Award Takehito Koyasu (武人子安) – Yoshio Hanamori (Shuu’s driver). I just can’t get enough of his deep, full, indifferent voice.

How it would be Worse Better if I Were the Director – Less Maya, more of the afro train girl and the old men girl. Less dresses and tragic flashbacks about mothers.

Recommendations – Nodame Cantabile, Honey and Clover

3 thoughts on “Kuragehime Review — B

  1. “Cinderella effect, where Tsukimi changes clothes and puts on makeup and is suddenly the most beautiful woman in the city.”

    She was not!?! She is just a slob when it comes to her look (like all of them… maybe the Kimono-Otaku not sooo much)
    The only person who found her pretty and fell for her at first sight is Big Brother who is really dense in not recognizing her. I doubt he changed her look that extreme with Make-up like the shocking “before-after” you see on the web.
    I found the “Three Kingdom” woman annoying, and they pissed me off when he suggested them to work (I wanna know how old all are) he wasn’t better in butting in.
    and the sexual harassment and blackmailing was not funny to and I do not want them to fall for each other and ending married. What an ugly start.
    The easily bribed driver was funny, not sure where I stand with the father, same as with the prime minister, but that school girl uniform scene haha
    Does it have a second season? So many open question I want answers too. Just answers. The last episodes about the jellyfish outfit was super boring and the outfit being very ugly made it worse. The fashionable outfits and hair looked weird and no good to me. I liked the interaction between them, and when the Amas weren’t that loud for no reason *cough*mayayan*cough*

    Would have gave it a C, expected to be more input or more depth in what they showed, but not the dress part

    WTF destroying stuff without asking that is super expansive @thepinkpearls

    1. She had all the sparklies around her when she put on makeup, I think that means she’s supposed to be more beautiful… although personally I agree with you.

      No second season, doubt it’s going to get one.

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