Type: TV (10 episodes)
» magical girl
Fate/Kaleid Liner Prisma Illya
Illya is an elementary school student who is an ardent fan of magical girl anime. While silly, many girls like her dream of what it would be like to have magical super powers. However when she actually becomes one, Illya finds the reality tougher to deal with. It's dangerous, her mentor is overbearing, and the outfit is really embarrassing!
Illya strikes up a friendship with a reclusive girl who also became a magical girl recently. Becoming friends may be the difference between victory and defeat.
I guess you could say I'm a Fate Stay Night fan, enough that I kind of liked the spin of turning it into a magical girl show, even if I had this bad feeling it might become another Tenchi Muyo version of what happened with with Magical Project S (anyone remember that? Didn't think so). But I really liked this adaptation, and it got the real basic thing right: Illya is an absolutely adorable magical girl.
A big strength of Kaleid Liner Prisma Illya is approaching the magical girl idea in a tongue-in-cheek way without making the mistake of becoming an overzealous parody. It makes the setup fun and easy to digest even if a bit silly. It's a good mix of comedy and action, with a nice underlying theme of friendship and teamwork. It would be a solid anime if it weren't for the two major faults.
First being inconsistent pacing. It starts well, but gets lost by episode 5, although the second half of episode 6 is so awesome it makes up for all other faults in the anime. It goes back and forth between decent content and poor quality padding. Which leads to the second problem: stupid fan service pandering.
Unnecessary bath scenes are bad enough, but there's an entire section of "maid" stuff that shouldn't have happened. Sometimes Illya goes so out of character to pander, it's almost painful to watch. The anime isn't over-run with this content, but there's only 10 episodes so it takes up more time than it should.
Overall I liked the anime, but I'm a little frustrated the reason I didn't enjoy it more came down to Fate Kaleid Liner Illya sabotaging itself. It hits a sweet spot with broad appeal for both magical girl fans, and Fate Stay Night fans. You don't have to be both, but you'll get the most millage out of the show if you are.
It's a fun anime as it stands now, and I'm looking forward to the second season (Zwei) even if a part of me is dreading where it might go.
Ruby: If the children who dream of being magical girls saw this, they'd cry.
Miyu: This absurd act ignores aerodynamics, not to mention gravity, inertia and the third law of motion.
Illya: well it's anime, so you shouldn't think too much about it.
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