Magical Project S

TV series - 26 episodes

The re-working of Magical Girl Pretty Sammy, this was known as Magical Girl Pretty Sammy TV in Japan.

This show is to 'Magical Girl Pretty Sammy' what 'Tenchi Universe' is to 'Tenchi Muyo! [Ryo-Ohki]'. The core of the show remains the same, but the entire story is new and a lot of the cast have new roles. It also works really well. Sasami Kawai lives an ideal, if somewhat eccentric lifestyle with her adoring mother who runs a CD store, cool father who seems to do a bit of everything, and best friend Misao, the very shy girl she befriended. Her life is turned upside down when the magical world of Juraihelm chooses a new queen in the form of the flower loving Tsunami. Tsunami has to choose a kindred spirit from Earth to champion justice for her and restore the balance of good and evil. When the balance is restored she can officially become queen. So Tsunami and her helper Ryo-ohki travel to Earth and tell Sasami she is a magical girl - Pretty Sammy. Unfortunately Ramia, one of Tsunami's rivals for the crown, decides to thwart Pretty Sammy with a magical girl of her own- Pixy Misa. The thing is, Pixy Misa is really Misao. And so a crazy set of adventures and weird monsters await Pretty Sammy as she fights against Pixy Misa to restore the balance of good and evil. But what will happen when Pixy Misa's identity is revealed, and whatever happened to the third candidate for the throne?

If you have seen Magical Girl Pretty Sammy then you know the kind of thing this show is going to be. It is part magical girl show and part parody of them. It also, thanks to the much longer running time, has a long running cohesive story of it's own and manages to send up many other famous anime along the way, or at least give a nod to them. A nicely blatant 'El Hazard' joke comes up in the very first episode! However, despite the comic style there are some nice serious moments, particularly near the end of the series where the show gets quite emotional and thoughtful, which is a nice break and just makes you think 'whoa, this show has some substance too!'. There isn't as much focus on the regular 'Tenchi Muyo' characters this time, with some only appearing in a couple of episodes, but this show can easily stand on its own without the added input, and I actually think it works better this way.

As with the OAVs this show is ideal for any audience, with only the mildest of violence for the magical fight scenes which are almost always against very comic enemies anyway. There are the usual semi-nude transformation sequences (with sparkling light covering them) but most versions have all traces of nudity removed anyway by upping the level of light. For adults, especially anime fans, there is a lot to like here as well with the parody and more emotionally serious story lines. Provided of course you can stomach the high cuteness levels this show contains!

As expected the animation for this show is generally good for a TV series, though not as nice as the OAVs. The drawing style, while definitely very cute, is very nice to look at, and the show has the fluidity when it needs it. The enemies are as stupid looking as they need to be just to send up the magical girl genre, but in general it is a very nice looking show.

While I may be lynched for saying this I must say the big disappointment in this show was the fact that it wasn't dubbed. In many cases I would say this is no big deal, but I really like the 'Tenchi Muyo' dub cast, and it was a real shame they didn't do this show because they could have had a lot of fun with it and it means that a lot of people will miss out on it because it is subtitle only. I also have one major gripe with the music. They should have used the first closing theme song 'Persona' for the second half of the show, or perhaps all of it. It is a great song that is surprisingly subtle and thoughtful. The second one 'Choushini notta Orimashita' is very happy and bouncy, and while quite fun it just doesn't fit with the latter half of the series, which is the more serious half. This is especially true of the cliffhangers, where Persona would have just worked so well. It is a minor niggle, but it just really got to me.

Having said that though on the whole this is a fantastic series, and if you are a fan of any of the shows themes then it is a must get. Provided you like cute shows you should try this, but if you're still unsure give the OAVs a try, although I must say I actually prefer this show, both because it has time to tell a full story, and because I just find it funnier!


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Some of you may also know me as 'Nutzoide'!
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