Well, this is the last of my anime reviews for this week (previous post here). I saved my favorite for the finale, even if it is the most bizarre of the lot. The show is also very entertaining, in a morbidly funny way. It’s called Princess Resurrection, and saying it is difficult to explain properly is an understatement.
Anyway, the anime opens with Hiro, a young boy, (looks about 10-12, but he is probably a bit older than that) moving to a new town to live with his older sister who has just gotten a job as a live in maid. He gets to the mansion to find it boarded up. While wandering the town looking for his sister he sees a gothic looking teen girl sitting on a very high stack of packages being pulled by what looks like a five year old girl in a maid outfit. The teen gets down when a wheel breaks, just in time to be in the path of some iron girders that fall from a construction site. Hiro pushes her out of the way, but is crushed himself. (Un)Luckily for him the girl is actually one of the monster princesses, able to grant half-immortality to the dead. In a fit of whimsy (she says it is because she is merciful) she revives Hiro and makes him her first bodyguard, despite the fact that his only use in a fight is as a human shield. Unless she keeps giving him the ‘flame of life’ every few days he will die and stay dead, but as long as she does so he will heal from any wound (even decapitation under certain circumstances) almost instantly. In an interesting bit of homage she initially revives him while chanting a bit from Lovecraft, the oft repeated line supposedly from the Necronomicon, “That is not dead which can eternal lie. And with strange eons even death may die.” It turns out also that she is Hiro’s sister’s new boss, and he does move in, now as much (more really) her servant. She tells him to call her Hime, but really that is just Japanese for princess, though we do learn in the last regular episode of season one what her name is.
From this point the series is basically Hiro’s pitiful attempts to help in defending Hime from the various monsters and assassins that attack. You see, the royal family is fighting over who will be the next King, and its last prince/princess standing that wins. Werewolves, vampires, mummies, zombies, invisible men, pretty much every monster staple you can think of makes an appearance, (even a few amusing appearances by a race modeled after the Creature from the Black Lagoon) and some very unique adventures ensue. Luckily Hime has some more competent help than Hiro, at first only the midget gynoid Flandre, (who can only say the world Huga and starts acting crazy if the literal screw in her head gets loose) and later a half-werewolf and others. My favorite episode had to be when Hiro and Hime become trapped in a ghost town during witching hour, and by ghost town I mean the ghost of a town, not an empty one. Hiro’s sister is always amusing as well, oblivious not only to her many admirers, but everything supernatural happening around her. In some ways this anime is similar to others about a young teen/boy surrounded by attractive females, but here it is done without the fan service (mostly, it is still anime after all, but it is limited to a couple episodes only) and more as an ironic source of humor rather than sexual. In other ways it is nothing like those animes, because, basically, it is like nothing else I have seen to date.
As of early this year the first season has been released in two collections to the US, with subbing only though, no dubs as of yet. There has unfortunately been no word if there will be a second season or not, though the manga is still ongoing.
To give you an idea of how bizarre it can be, here are the translated lyrics from the end theme music. (Keeping in mind that theme songs rarely make sense to begin with) It doesn’t do it justice to see it without the wacky visuals, but it is something.
Get down on your knees and lick my red nails
Call me queen with your entangled tongue
The sun that blooms in Hell
Darkness that’s fallen to Paradise
If you’re confronted with light and despair
Which one goes deeper?
Roses fly from my head
I’ll scatter them into Nirvana
Wounds that secretly pain you
Blood that gushes away
They both lead to the depths of my heart
You’re given these gorgeous gifts as tribute
And yet you’re still
Tell me exactly to what extent
Grown men are just foolish little boys?
Get down on your knees and lick my sacred feet
Call me queen in your hoarse voice
The proof of your life creeps up the tower of pain
Slowly making your way, you can barely breathe
But if you still ask for it
Your dying breath just might be
The words that melt
[tags]anime, Princess Resurrection[/tags]