Princess Jellyfish Episode #01 Anime Review

Known as Kuragehim in Japan, Princess Jellyfish is a new eleven episode series from Brain's Base based on the very popular manga series by Akiko Higashimura. The manga version is pretty recent as it only started back in 2008 but it has five volumes of the josei series out and it's still coming out regularly in the Kiss magazine. The show is eye-catching from the start, especially with the opening sequence that does a number of movie parodies from James Bond to Star Wars and more. A good culturally aware series is hard to come by, especially one that plays with Western film references so openly.

The series revolves around Tsukimi, a young woman who has not achieved what she wanted out of life. She opens part of her narration by apologizing to her mother about not becoming a princess of sorts as an adult and instead having become something that doesn't exactly fit in with the social culture of the day. While she may not have achieved that, she is somewhat happy with her life as she lives in a woman's only apartment building with a group of rather likeminded individuals. They're all basic archetypes of social issues that keep them from interacting with society normally and without any problems. The setup and scenario is fairly standard, but it's very rare that we see this with a group of women. Occasionally you might find one NEET oriented girl in a show, at best, but even that is exceedingly rare and hard to come by.

While the show could be extremely interesting to watch just from this perspective, akin to the Welcome to the NHK series, Princess Jellyfish intends to go a different way. Jellyfish have been important to Tsukimi since her younger days as the show opens with her visiting them with her mother, there's story books about them and even as a young adult she spends some time drawing about them. She's so infatuated with them, in a completely no creepy and normal way, that she has a name for the one at the local pet store she visits. What causes it to go beyond the norm is that when she visits it one night, there's another jellyfish in the tank with her Ciara jellyfish, one that will threaten Ciara's life if it's left in there.

Tsukimi can't actually talk to the guy there since she's so introverted, but what saves her is the arrival of a very stylish woman who purchases the jellyfish for her and walks home with her. The arrival of this stylish woman throws a kink into the apartments since the others can't handle someone like her there and even Tsukimi has a difficult time with it as well as knowing how it will impact the others. Never mind putting a jellyfish in the bathtub. When the woman stays overnight, it only adds to the bizarre nature of things when her true nature is revealed and we see how someone stylish gets introduced into the mix, which is about to upset the balance of the casts lives.

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