GoPrincess Precure the Movie

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So this movie is unique. Because it’s three movies. I guess having Spring Carnival be the most abnormal crossover movie wasn’t enough so they made GoPrincess’s regular movie the weirdest one too. The first part of the movie is a CGI short that’s about 5 minutes long, then you get into the main movie which is like a normal Precure movie and that’s about 50 minutes long and finally the third part is another CGI adventure that’s about 15 minutes. The third part is similar to a normal Precure movie except it’s shorter and in CGI. All this together makes the GoPri movie the most unique of them all, even more than Splash Star’s which was only a total of 50 minutes for some reason.

Before anything else starts Puff and Aroma introduce the movie and explain the Miracle Lights.

So the CGI short that starts the movie is called Cure Flora and the Mischievous Mirror.

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So this sequence has no dialogue, only music and sounds. Flora finds a big mirror in the room and a bunch of little spirits in the room decide to play with her. They copy her appearance and we get a Harpo Marx routine. It’s just a silly little short. Flora decides to play around too, apparently as kids you’re supposed to be waving the Miracle Lights for part of this.

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Flora transforms into a witch at one point. I wonder if that’s foreshadowing for next season. Anyways the other girls come in at the end and see Flora getting a cute pumpkin outfit cause of the spirits. After having a good time they all leave the room.

So I should probably explain that the whole movie is Halloween/pumpkin themed. And now we get to the “movie” movie.

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The opening theme song plays as the girls eat their hearts out at the Pumpkin Cafe. Haruka is acting a bit more hyper and eccentric than normal. There’s also some mysterious guy watching them as they hang out and eat the pumpkin pudding.

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The guy makes a flyer for the “Princess Convention” being held in the Pumpkin Kingdom appear. Aroma sees it and says all the girls should participate. Minami thinks they might be able to use something from the kingdom for the Halloween party at Noble Academy. A Zetsuborg then attacks the girls from out of nowhere, the guy watching them created it. The girls transform to fight it and defeat it after a short battle.

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But then the mysterious guy uses his power to transport the girls and fairies to the Pumpkin Kingdom.

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As they get to the castle the guy introduces himself as the minister of the kingdom. Towa is instantly suspicious. The girls then meet the King and Queen.

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When Haruka tells them her dream is to become a princess the King and Queen seem to be reminded of someone. But the Minister does something and they instantly forget about all that and go on about how they have to sell more pudding to acquire more wealth or something like that. The Minister comes up to the girls and tells them that their country doesn’t have a princess right now so they’re using the convention to choose one. Dancing, walking, music and cooking contests.

But as we learn there really is a princess of the Pumkin Kingdom. She’s just being held in the tower at the top of the castle. Some of the fairies that live in the kingdom come visit her, they want to help her.

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As the girls prepare for the convention by changing into their designated outfits Haruka finds a doll in her room. It’s clearly handmade and Haruka wonders where the girl that owns it is? She wonders if there was actually a princess here. One of the fairies assisting her mumbles the name Pumpururu but quickly shuts up. Towa while preparing is even more certain that something wrong is going on here.

When the four girls get to the convention we see that all the other participants are wearing masks. Minami wins the dancing contest after doing ballet, she’s taken into another room after winning. We see that she’s locked in. Kirara also wins the walking contest. Haruka sees some fairies acting weird so she goes to follow them with Puff and Aroma, Towa tells Haruka to be careful because she can sense some dark power.

After following them for a bit Puff and Aroma have to fly up to the top of the tower and see them talking with the Princess, Pumpururu. The doll Haruka found was hers. Aroma goes to tell Haruka that the real princess is locked up and she has him take the doll back to her. Pumpururu tells Aroma and Puff about how one day some dark power hit the castle and the king and queen forgot about Pumpururu. The minister then locked her up.

Towa wins the music contest and goes to the same kind of room Minami and Kirara went to but she has her Perfume with her. The pumpkin fairies lead Haruka to under the castle where a massive factory is pumping out pumpkin pudding. The fairies are cruelly mistreated and overworked to make the pudding.

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The minister reveals himself to Minami and Kirara, who are trapped in some kind of crystal cage. and tells them his name is Warp. He collects despair and other interesting things. He aims to collect the Precure.

Haruka comes back to the contest. She’s going to make pudding for the king and queen.

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Haruka makes it with all her heart and fills it with the feelings she has for her family. When the king and queen taste it they remember Pumpururu. Warp just laughs upon seeing this and sends Zetsuborgs to attack. All of the other “contestants” were Zetsuborgs. Flora defeats some of the Zetsuborgs so Warp shows her how he’s already captured Minami and Kirara. But Towa is safe because she kept her Perfume with her and was able to escape from his trap. She now transforms and joins Flora.

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Warp still easily traps the both of them in crystals, happy to now have all 4 Precure in his collection. He did all of this to the Pumpkin Kingdom just to draw the girls here and capture them. Flora gets mad and with the help of all the fairies pounding on the outside of her crystal she’s able to shatter it and break free, she wants everyone to try the pudding she put all her feelings into. The fairies and Flora help the others get out and now Minami and Kirara transform too.

All of the girls fight Warp, this part of the fight is fairly short but there’s some cool stuff.

When he starts to lose Warp turns into some kind of giant molten lava form… or it could be pudding.

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It solidifies into a gigantic chameleon that sucks up the king and queen and a bunch of fairies. Pumpururu tells the girls not to give up after the thing blasts them and lays waste to a lot of the kingdom. Pumpururu is able to break out of her tower and make it to the Precure.

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Pumpururu yells out to her mother and father and all the fairies inside Warp, telling them not to forget their dreams and happiness. An insert song starts playing around here.

This is also where the Miracle Lights come in.

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Everyone waves them and cheers on the Precure. A special pumpkin Dress-Up Key is made from the Miracle Lights power and the girls use it with the Precure Palace to give themselves a Halloween Mode Elegant. The 4 of them then use Precure Halloween Eclair to destroy Warp.

The Pumpkin Kingdom is returned to normal.

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Pumpururu reunites with her mother and father. It’s pretty much exactly like what you see in the main series when Towa sees her parents again. Pumpururu says they’re having a ball now and they invite the Precure, but we don’t actually see the ball, this portion of the movie ends and we get the ending credits.

Yeah each part has its own credits sequence. The second part was fine, as far as Precure movies go it was insanely average and normal. After the credits the girls get back to Noble Academy in time for their Halloween Party.

Now we get to the final part of the movie. My favorite part.

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That doll from the previous part is actually alive. Her name is Leffy. Haruka gets pulled into some strange other world where Leffy lives, she gets automatically transformed into Flora on the way there. Leffy comes in being chased by a bunch of Pumpkin Zetsuborg soldiers. She grabs Flora and the two of them run through the city together. Mermaid, Twinkle and Scarlet are there too and all of them meet up, safe for now.

There’s some really nice scenery and art in this part of the movie.

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Leffy tells the girls that Night Pumpkin came to this land and stole away the daylight. Leffy says they need to place the Miracle Princess Light that she has on top of the castle to get the light back and return things to normal. She needs the Precure’s help to get there.

More Zetsuborg pumpkins come around so Leffy decides to distract them by singing a song while the Precure go clear the way up the castle, looking to defeat Night Pumpkin. We get another insert song here. After finishing her song and evading the remaining pumpkins Leffy joins up with the girls again, she’s the one with the Miracle Light who needs to use it at the top of the castle.

Now they all make it to Night Pumpkin’s throne.

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Night Pumpkin has Noise’s voice. The girls fight him and it’s actually a pretty good and cool looking CGI fight. And funny. Leffy takes her light to the top of the castle with Flora while the other girls occupy Night Pumpkin. But Night Pumpkin attacks Flora and Leffy before they can put the light in and he grabs the light from them.

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Flora and Leffy continue to fight on, the GoPrincess opening theme song plays, and Leffy just straight up bites the shit out of Night Pumpkin’s arm to get him to drop the Miracle Light. She then runs up to the top of the castle while the girls fight Night Pumpkin. They all succeed and Night Pumpkin is blasted out of the city after Leffy returns the light.

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Pretty.

THE END.

 

 

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GoPrincess Precure

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GoPrincess Precure is a good show. It’s well made and at least competent in all areas, with well defined themes and strong character arcs. It exemplifies a lot of what makes Precure Precure and doesn’t have excessive low points or certain faults of past seasons such as obnoxious fairies or any other annoying characters. On top of that it has very nice animation, good looks in general, and some of the best action of any season.

That being said I do not care much for GoPrincess. Partially because like Heartcatch I never found myself as attached to the characters as I did in other seasons. But I can’t deny that GoPrincess is a mostly good show and aesthetically very pleasing with some very well-developed Cures.

So why don’t I like it? Well, pretty much all the problems with GoPrincess can be summed up with the following image:

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GoPrincess doesn’t do anything. It is the most creatively bankrupt season and massively lacking in innovation or anything new. It is very bland and has pretty much no identity of its own. You could essentially call it “Precure Precure”. Other seasons, like Smile for the biggest example, take things from past seasons but unlike those GoPrincess does not do anything new with it or add its own twist on something. GoPrincess is satisfied with taking the idea or past spirit and leaving it at that. It’s basically like if you ripped out the skeleton of every past season and mashed them all together, that’s GoPrincess. Even though GoPrincess is a technically better season than some I struggle to find any real reason to recommend it. It’s so lacking in identity, it doesn’t do or have anything special to it. I know why I would tell someone to watch Doki Doki, or Yes5, or Heartcatch but I can’t think of any reason for someone to watch GoPrincess other than if you were just a Precure fan and wanted to watch every season. Of course though because of that it would be good for someone who has never seen Precure before, “Here, this is what Precure is about, after you finish it go watch a season that has a soul or something special to it”. I dislike Doki but it at least has a heart, misplaced it may be in my view, GoPrincess I don’t know if it has a heart at all.

GoPrincess is basically the Kamen Rider Wizard or The Force Awakens of Precure, technically competent, well made, but thoroughly unspectacular. It doesn’t do anything the worst but it doesn’t do anything the best either. Even the main character, Cure Flora, who is hardly a bad character is still a very standard pink/leader type.

Another thing that hurts GoPrincess is that it is yet ANOTHER 4 CURE SEASON. Right after another one. Dear god. And it reuses some themes with the villains that have just been done to death by this point in the franchise and had been used in some seasons leading right up to GoPrincess, just making it more tired. For a franchise as long as Precure this death of creativity really hurts GoPrincess if you watched every season leading up to it like I have.

Let’s get to the show.

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It begins with a crying girl. She’s upset that some boys told her she could never be a princess. But she then meets an older boy, who tells he she can be one if it’s her dream. As long as she nurtures that dream she can become a princess. He then gives her something and tells her his name is Kanata, he tells her never to forget her dream. Wait. A dark skinned, purple haired guy coming to a young girl and telling her she can be a princess? Am I watching Utena?

Then the opening theme song plays. It’s pretty good and it changes in lots of little ways as the show goes on.

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A few years later Haruka Haruno is excited to be enrolling at Noble Academy. A prestigious school where everyone lives in the dorms. She meets her roommates Nanase Yui and they take a tour around the academy. This is a very proper academy where girls greet each other with “Gokigenyo” (watch Maria-Sama ga Miteru). Girls take care of themselves here and have dance lessons among other things.

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Briefly the two of them meet the student council president, Karen… err, Minami. She was tragically born without a personality but enough about her for now. We also see a new girl arriving at the academy but we don’t know anything about her yet.

Later on while the two of them are exploring the grounds Yui tells Haruka that her dream is to become a children’s book author. When she asks Haruka what her dream is Haruka is too embarrassed to respond and runs off.

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She then runs into the fairies Puff and Aroma. They say they’re Hope Kingdom’s royal fairies, Aroma is holding a box with him. They tell Haruka they need to hurry so this world isn’t taken over by despair. We then get introduced to the first villain of the show, Close from Dysdark, who also was tragically born without a personality.

Yui has come looking for Haruka and ends up becoming the first victim of Close.

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Close looks into Yui’s heart and sees her dream, and he locks that dream in a cage of despair to create a Zetsuborg. And as someone who grew up in the 90’s I will forever think of the Beetleborg’s every time I hear that word.

Haruka sees this and wants to help and Aroma’s box falls and opens up to reveal a “Princess Perfume”. Close says he’s going to destroy every dream, which angers Haruka. Haruka says her dream is to become a princess and she pulls out the thing Kanata gave her long ago, which glows and is revealed as a “Dress-up Key”.

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She can use that key and perfume to become a Precure. She’s worried but makes her decision to help Yui and protect her dream. Putting the key into the Perfume she transforms into Cure Flora.

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Good transformation, I’m not a huge fan of the outfit but at least it isn’t pink on pink again like with Lovely. Flora’s transformation scene in general and what comes after it are very pretty, a bunch of flowers in the field suddenly bloom and petals fill the air. There is some kind of random out of place CGI though.

Anyways after this we get an amazing fight for a first episode. The animation quality is frankly stellar as well, it’s seriously on the level that you would normally only see in movies. This got a lot of people hyped up for the season.

After beating up the Zetsuborg Flora then uses her power to activate Mode Elegant.

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She gets a bigger dress, more CGI involved, and uses her attack Precure Floral Tourbillon to defeat the Zetsuborg. Close retreats and Haruka uses her key to unlock the cage of despair and save Yui.

Aroma then tells her that they came here from the Hope Kingdom to search for the Princess Precure on the orders from Kanata.

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It turns out Kanata is the prince of the Hope Kingdom, this really surprises Haruka.

And then the episode ends and we get to the ending song. It’s pretty interesting, feels like something from a Disney movie in places. Which makes sense I suppose. So the first episode of GoPrincess is pretty good, establishes everything in a fine enough way and the fight was really something special. It was nice that it wasn’t a two-parter to start with either, having that three times in a row would’ve been annoying. Things were definitely looking up after this first episode.

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The second episode begins with Haruka telling the fairies how Kanata gave her the key she has. They tell her that Hope Kingdom was attacked and taken over by Dyspear of Dysdark. And they currently don’t know what happened to Kanata, he gave them their mission to find the Precure while they were under attack. Haruka says she’ll help them find the other Precure.

She’s also very happy to be a princess for real but Aroma tells her she isn’t a true princess yet. A true princess embodies, strength, kindness and beauty. Becoming a true princess is a big part of the show. Haruka needs to develop her “princessness” and her powers. Yui wakes up, Puff and Aroma leave for now, and Haruka now decides to tell Yui that her dream is to be a princess, which Yui thinks is a wonderful dream.

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The next morning Haruka is out jogging, she doesn’t know what she can do about kindness and beauty but she can at least train for strength. Minami is also out that morning looking across the sea, for who knows what reason, and she sees a Princess Key in the water and picks it up.

It’s also the entrance ceremony today, which Haruka almost misses and gets punished by a teacher for. But Minami gets the teacher to ease up, while still telling Haruka to reflect on her actions. Haruka and Yui get to see how perfect Minami is this episode. There’s an odd Marimite vibe here even though the school is coed.

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Haruka asks Minami to help her out with ballet. Which she does but she’s strict because she has her own schedule. After spending time with her Haruka learns Minami is a really nice person, she’s been working hard ever since she was a kid to get as good as she is now at everything.

Close then comes back and decides to attack the school so he can destroy Haruka’s Princess Key. He makes a Zetsuborg out of some random kid. Yeah GoPrincess follows Happiness Charge’s style when it comes to the victim of the week format, anyone can become a monster without provocation or development as long as they have a dream and most don’t get development. Again I think it’s preferable to Doki’s way since it still allows for potential good victims of the week but victim of the week is kind of tired at this point and having the exact same format as last season is annoying.

Minami also sees Haruka transform as she goes off to fight. It’s another good fight, not as awesome as the first episode though. Minami comes to help Flora and her key glows.

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Aroma gives her one of the other Perfumes and she transforms into Cure Mermaid. It’s a cool transformation and I like her outfit, first midriff since Suite. Again there’s some great animation when she fights, for those who watched while it aired we wondered if the show could keep this up as it went on (the answer is no, but good effort).

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Mermaid also uses Mode Elegant to get her big fancy dress and finish off the Zetsuborg with her attack, Precure Mermaid Ripple. Haruka is happy to have Minami as an ally, but then Aroma and Puff notice that the third Precure Perfume is missing.

So for episode 3 it’s night at the academy, they couldn’t find the missing Perfume earlier. Puff has sneaked into the dorms to be with Haruka. We meet some of the other students and minor characters this episode the next morning when Haruka and Yui and everyone has to clean the dorms and all of that stuff. They stay minor characters.

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Puff gets found out so Haruka has to ask if they can keep her in the dorm, like sort of a class pet kind of thing. This episode is about Haruka convincing some of the girls to keep Puff.

The second villain, Shut, also appears.

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You don’t know it yet but he’s the best thing about the show.

Shut is a rather froopy guy and he and Close don’t really get along well. Shut creates a Zetsuborg so the girls go and fight it. There’s no really good action here but it’s still an alright fight, Close also created a Zetsuborg this episode so Flora and Mermaid fight and defeat two at once.

At the end of the episode Haruka has been able to convince all the girls to let Puff stay in the dormitory.

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Of course though this mess has made them all completely forget about the missing third Perfume. Which we see is with the girl who arrived at school in the first episode.

Episode 4 then is the formal introduction of my favorite Cure of the season.

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Haruka, Minami and the fairies are still looking for the other Perfume. Haruka notices a magazine that has the young model Amanogawa Kirara on it, Haruka likes her and Minami mentions that Kirara actually goes to their school. And then they notice that she’s holding the missing Perfume. Puff and Aroma say to go ask her to be a Precure.

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When they talk to her Kirara pretty much just brushes them off, saying she’s too busy to really talk now. She does give Haruka the nickname Haruharu, which I will now be using. Kirara is really the only interesting or different Cure of the season.

Later Haruharu and Minami go after her while she’s working. Close also is out and he attacks them with a Zetsuborg, he orders Kirara to give over the Perfume but Haruharu and Minami transform and easily defeat his Zetsuborg. They then are going to ask Kirara to join them but instead she just willingly hands them the perfume and walks off, she isn’t interested in becoming a Precure at all, she’s too busy. But Haruharu still doesn’t want to give up on getting her as the third Precure.

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They go to a fashion show Kirara will be in, meanwhile Kirara also finds a Princess Key in her bag. Haruharu meets Kirara at the show and learns that Kirara designs some of her own clothes and that her dream is to reach an even bigger and bigger stage. She wants to shine like the stars in the sky.

Close then shows up again at the show and turns a model into a Zetsuborg, asking for the Perfume again. This fight doesn’t go as well for Flora and Mermaid so Kirara steps forward, she’s angry at Close for ruining the show. Roma notices her Princess Key and he gives her the perfume back, Kirara uses it to transform into Cure twinkle.

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Good transformation again but I don’t actually care much for the outfit. She fights and defeats the Zetsuborg easily, using Mode Elegant and her attack Precure Twinkle Humming.

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Haruharu and Minami then reveal that they’re the Precure to her, but Kirara still says she isn’t becoming a Precure. She just wanted to beat up Close for ruining the show. She’s still too busy and she gives them the Perfume back again.

Episode 5 starts with Haruharu again saying how she wants Kirara as the third Precure and refusing to give up on her.

Haruharu goes to talk with her but Kirara says she’s giving it her all to be a model, she won’t be a Precure. Reminds me of Miki. Kirara has Haruharu follow her around to show her what her schedule is like. Haruharu also tells her about her dream to become a Princess, feeling that even though she’s become a Princess Precure she hasn’t really achieved what it means to be a “Princess”. Kirara says she isn’t sure she’s gotten to the level she wants to be at either, she’s overshadowed by her mom who’s a super famous model. She enrolled at Noble Academy because that’s where her mom went.

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Kirara has an audition with an important designer and Haruharu helps give her the idea for the perfect dress to impress the guy.

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Later Kirara runs into and talks with Minami, she says how surprised she is by Haruharu continuing to hang out with her and help her out even after she refused to be a Cure. It’s throwing her off. She also decides to give Minami the nickname Minamin.

Close then shows up and turns a random kid into a Zetsuborg. Flora and Mermaid go fight him while at the same time Kirara gets notice that she passed the audition.

Close is beating Flora and Mermaid when Kirara shows up.

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She asks for the key and Perfume back, saying the show won’t give up on being a model but she’s found something equally important to do. Become a Precure. Haruharu’s earnest feelings got to her. She transforms again and as Twinkle defeats the Zetsuborg.

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At the end of the fight the voice of Dyspear calls out to Close, telling him not to embarrass them anymore and ordering him back to Dysdark.

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Kirara says she’ll help them as a Precure now and so all three Princess Precure are together.

So yeah the intro episodes aren’t bad. Biggest problem is probably Close being boring but besides that they do a good job of introducing the three girls and the setting/backstory. GoPrincess is quite a good looking show too, it hasn’t had the great fight animation since episode two though.

So onward to episode 6. Movie scenes start showing in the opening. In the taken over Hope Kingdom Kanata realizes that the 3 Princess Precure have been gathered.

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At Noble Academy the girls use the secondary student council room as their “base”. Aroma shows the girls the Princess Lesson Pad, and says they will begin princess lessons aiming to become Grand Princesses. The Grand Princess must embody “strong, kind. and beautiful”. Haruka is looking forward to it.

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They meet their teacher of the princess lessons, Miss Shamour, who first teaches them how to properly have tea with guests. The princess lessons are all kinds of things like this. Haruka is not quite as good as Minami and Kirara are at this kind of stuff, she feels like the odd one out in their group because she’s rather normal and unassuming. Haruka says she wants to become like the flower princess from her favorite fairy tale but says she’s still far away from that obviously.

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Kanata then contacts them all. He recognizes Haruka, who’s also happy to see him along with the fairies. It’s at this point that we get the typical Precure plot infodump where Kanata tells the girls about Dysdark and Dyspear. Currently he’s hiding from them on the outskirts of the Hope Kingdom. He tells the girls how Dysdark attacked and took all the dreams of the people and locked them behind the Door of Despair. Kanata feels guilty for this, the girls offer to help him in any way they can. He tells them there are two things they must do, the first is to find all 12 Dress-Up Keys which were used in the past to seal evil. The keys were originally in the Hope Kingdom before coming to Earth during Dyspear’s attack. With the twelve keys they can break open the Door of Despair. Currently there are 9 left to find after the ones the girls already have that allowed them to transform.

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Dyspear is also looking for the keys. She’s angry at Close for his repeated failures and she tells him and Shut that Lock, the last of the generals, has gone out to take care of things. Lock then arrives at the Academy and creates a Zetsuborg.

Dyspear can also tell that Kanata is communicating with the girls and it seems she can use her power to interfere with his transmission so Kanata realizes he needs to leave soon.

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Kanata tells them the second thing they must do is become Grand Princesses. Only one person can unlock all of the keys power, they must all strive to become a Grand Princess. Haruka isn’t sure she can do it but Kanata says she can, she’s special because the first key came to her years ago long before Dyspear attacked. It went through time and space on its own to reach her. He thanks Haruka for nurturing her dream to become a Princess and says they’ll meet again before ending the transmission.

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After that the girls go out to fight the Zetsuborg and they meet Lock for the first time. Nothing to really say about him yet, he doesn’t do anything and the girls defeat his Zetsuborg without any trouble.

Episode 7.

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Haruharu meets a boy from her past at Noble Academy. When they were younger he made fun of her dream to be a Princess. He used to bully her a little too and meeting him again has made her upset. Minami says she should try making up since it was so long ago anyways. She still gets frustrated with him because they’re supposed to play tennis together but he really doesn’t want to lose so he just brushes her off and wont count on her.

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Haruka has Shamour teach her tennis and we learn that Miss Shamour can transform into a human.

Haruka eventually comes to respect Yuuki a bit because she sees how hard he works towards his dream of being a great tennis player. Shut then shows up and turns him into a Zetsuborg, the girls defeat it without any real trouble and Flora rescues Yuuki. He sees Flora while he’s still kind of in a daze and thinks she’s the flower princess and he later tells Haruka that she really does exist so many Haruka can become a princess one day too. Of course he still teases her on her lack of princess attributes.

Episode 8 begins with Haruharu learning about a big party that takes palce at the school where everyone wears formal attire. Haruka says she’s gonna make her own dress, even though she can’t sew. Because making your own dress is something princesses do you know. She wants to try so she gets Miss Shamour to teach her. Haruharu puts a lot of effort into it but it takes a toll on her studies and she’s getting a little sleepy in class too.

Minami says she has to give up on making the dress if this is the cost. But Haruharu says she’ll work extra hard to do everything and she really pushes herself. And she does improve. Kirara gets worried though that she’s pushing herself too hard. But Haruharu refuses her help, she wants to do this on her own.

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Lock is the villain again and he creates a Zetusborg from a student. Kirara and Minami go to fight it on their own so Haruka doesn’t have to be bothered with it too but she shows up to fight anyways. Flora says she’ll give it her all to make her dream come true, giving her all to everything she does. Together they defeat the Zetsuborg and complete the dress, Haruka also thanks Kirara for worrying about her.

This episode had an interesting moral for Precure. Normally it would be like Haruka learning to accept someone elses help and not push herself too hard. But instead it’s about Kirara learning to trust in Haruka’s strength and ability to do something. It’s about letting someone do something with their own power, a bit unusual for Precure. Still it works cause it says to have faith in your friends.

And now we get to episode 9.

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The party is this episode. Dyspear also gives Close a final chance to redeem himself.

The party is very fancy for what’s essentially a middle school. This episode we learn that Minami is afraid of ghosts, and also that her dream is to become like her amazing father and older brother when she’s older. Close shows up at the party and turns a kid into a Zetsuborg. The episode is pretty funny what with Close’s reaction to seeing Mermaid is afraid of ghosts. There’s also some good animation.

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Nothing much to really say about the rest of the episode aside from Close getting defeated again and being really pissed off at Flora for putting him in this predicament. Haruka also says she’ll help Minami with her fears, she wanted to repay Minami back for being so reliable for her and Minami is happy to oblige.

Kind of odd cause this episode has like the exact opposite moral of the last episode, instead of Haruka letting Minami get over her fears herself or having any faith in her too she immediately just goes to help her and says she’ll let Minami rely on her.

Okay so next episode starts the beginning of a two-parter that closes out the second arc of GoPrincess, or first if you count intro episodes as a prologue or something. Episode 10 is a good episode mostly, has some nice scenes and pretty imagery. Kanata contacts the girls and tells them that his staff has sensed the location of a Dress-Up Key. It’s somewhere at Noble Academy, it should be somewhere where dreams flourish. Everyone goes looking for it.

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The girls end up following the dorm mother Shirogane to a secret flower garden, unbeknownst to them Yui and Close followed them too (Close hasn’t reported back to Dyspear after his failure last episode). Episode 10 and 11 basically do the exact same thing with Close that Smile did with Wolfrun late in, but I’ll get more into that later.

The rose garden reminds me of the Cure Rose Garden from GoGo even though they don’t really look much alike. There’s also a house there that the girls go into. Inside the walls are lined with tiles that people have written their dreams on. Past students of Noble Academy like Kirar’s mom and Minami’s brother.

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Shirogane is there too, she tells them it’s a memorial for all the students who graduated from Noble Academy. It’s supposed to be a secret from current students. Shirogane was the first student to leave a tile, she tells the girls to support each other and work hard towards their dreams. The girls keys then react and 3 new ones (1 for each girl obviously) appear. Just then Yui and Close also show up at the garden,

Close creates a Zetsuborg out of the dream house with Shirogane still inside. This Zetsuborg is stronger than normal because it’s essentially powered by all the dreams inside. Haruk and the others notice Yui and have to transform in front of her, so she finds out about them.

Flora’s attack isn’t strong enough to defeat the Zetsuborg but her and the other two’s determination to save the house of dreams draws out more power from them and causes the keys inside to react and the girls combine their 3 attacks to defeat the Zetsuborg.

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Afterwards the girls get their keys. The Elegant Dress-Up Keys, Lunar for Twinkle, Ice for Mermaid, and Rose for Flora.

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Dyspear then projects an image of herself before Close and the Precure while at the same time Kanata is in the Hope Kingdom searching for something to help the girls. And we move on immediately to episode 11.

Close asks for a final chance to defeat Flora, Dyspear grants it to him and uses her power to transport everyone behind the Door of Despair. Yui wakes up to find herself with Puff and Aroma and learns they can talk, they, Mermaid, and Twinkle get attacked by Zetsuborgs while Flora faces Close one on one.

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Close tells them they’re trapped in a cage of despair made my Dyspear and that inside of it he;s much stronger. He starts hulking out and grows wings and attacks Flora. Good animation this episode but the actual fighting is just meh. The girls try to use their new keys but they don’t do anything.

Kanata contacts the fairies, and Yui by extension, he has found the Crystal Princess Rods that will work with the Elegant Keys and grant new powers to the Precure. If the rods can feel the Precure’s dreams they’ll automatically travel to them. Yui goes to tell them. Mermaid and Twinkle though actually defeat their Zetsuborg opponents on their own and so all of them end up running to help Flora.

And so what I meant with this being just like Wolfrun is that Close blames Flora for everything going wrong, just like what Wolfrun did with Happy in episode 44 of Smile, it’s basically the exact same setup with Dyspear pushing him into a corner like Joker did to Wolfrun. Except the problem is that Wolfrun had a real character arc, appeared a lot more, and had a legitimate rivalry and several past serious fights and episodes. Close has nothing. And everything he says has no weight or emotion behind it, this is supposed to be a really big dramatic fight with him but Close feels no different than a starter villain from one of the earlier seasons. He’s no more special or interesting than Pissard or Karehaan but he gets this extravagant finale.

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Anyhow Close is too strong even for all three of the girls. But Flora says Close can’t destroy their dreams and they wont give up on them. Their keys react and Yui tells them about how they need to focus their thoughts and feelings and send them to Kanata. At the same time Close fully transforms into a monster crow and he blocks their power from reaching Kanata.

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Yui has to go up and thank Flora and remind her of how much she helped her., and says maybe her saved dream can help Flora’s dream come true too. This gets Flora to realize just how much she wants her dream to come true, same with Mermaid and Twinkle. They concentrate their feelings again and successfully summon the rods to them.

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Together the Princess Precure use the Elegant Keys with the Rods and defeat Close with their new attack, Precure Trinity Lumiere. Good riddance Close, you will not be missed… sigh.

The girls get out of the cage and the day is saved, but Dyspear seems rather pissed off.

Okay, things to talk about before moving on. I like how Yui finds out about them being Precure, this is fun but at the same time has now officially been done to death. Thank you for doing the same thing again GoPrincess. People might think I’m being unfair to Close as well but I just don’t care about him, he’s boring and plain. Scorp from GoGo was more interesting of a starter villain that had a real character arc in his short time and had a better and more justified finale. Close is just made super angry at Haruka even though they’ve barely interacted and he’s hardly done anything. He did nothing after episode 5 before being the villain again in episode 9 and essentially being a clown in it.

Minami is also a problematic character. She is Karen minus all the good and interesting things about Karen. They look the same, they’re both blue/water Cures, they’re both rich, they’re both student council presidents, they’re a year older than the pink and even their careers end up being in the same vein later. Except Minami doesn’t have the heat or depth that Karen had. I remember people comparing Reika to Karen when Smile first started but now we have the true long lost sisters. And Minami is by far and away the most boring and least interesting character of the season even without her being compared to Karen.

Puff and Aroma are fun fairies but they aren’t great characters like Candy, Pop, or Davi. Better than the HapCha fairies I guess.

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So episode 12 is a fun, silly, filler episode. It introduces a new minor character, Ranko, who works on tv and wants to be an idol. She’s also an upperclassmen at Noble Academy as the girls later learn. She’s a fun character. The episode starts with the girls accepting Yui as their partner and then Kirara gets a job to advertise the donut shop she really loves. Kirara is cute. Meanwhile Shut and Lock couldn’t care about Close’s death and Shut goes out to fight the girls. This is really just a classic fun and very silly episode like a Fresh or Smile one.

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Also during the fight the girls use their Elegant keys and Princess Rods to show off new individual attacks/abilities. Mermaid can actually conjure ice for example with hers. There’s surprisingly good animation this episode too. Having new little items giving the girls new attacks/abilities is something that the next season Maho would improve on. In essence the new Dress-Up Keys just amount to giving “upgraded” versions of their old attacks.

Episode 13 starts the next arc of GoPrincess.

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In the late afternoon Haruka hears someone playing the violin somewhere on the academy grounds. She goes to find the source of the music and sees a strange girl playing it, Haruka is enraptured by her playing and how pretty the girl is.

The next day Haruka says she wants to play the violin too. Minami takes her to a guy who makes and repairs violins, he just got done repairing hers.

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The guy ends up giving her the first violin he ever made as a gift. Haruka later calls on Miss Shamour to teach her, Shamour mentions that she also taught Kanata how to play the violin. Both Minami and Kirara can already play the violin well but Haruka… well, she’s not very good to put it lightly.

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Later that night Haruka hears the playing again and goes to meet the girl. The girl shows Haruka how to play… sort of. She tells Haruka to lock away her heart, only like that can the violin correctly be played. Haruka is able to play it better like this and she’s happy but the rest of the girls are weirded out by this person.

Suddenly we switch scenes to the Hope Kingdom and the girl appears before Dyspear and the other villains. Shut is immediately stricken by her beauty. Dyspear calls the girl Twilight and apparently she’s Dyspear’s daughter. Shut and Lock are surprised to learn this.

Haruka is performing for her friends and the violin maker, locking her heart away while she does, and although she’s improved on a technical level the guy says he can’t feel Haruharu’s true feelings, her playing didn’t strike his heart at all.

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Twilight and Shut then attack the girls, she admonishes Haruka’s poor playing and talent. Haruka is shocked when Shut tells them that Twilight is a princess and Dyspear’s daughter. Twilight tells them they can’t become princesses through hard work, she was born a princess and embodies what it means to be one, and then she takes out an evil looking Dress-Up Key and uses it on Shut to “unlock” more power within him. Shut then creates a Zetsuborg out of the violin guy, it looks stronger and eviler than previous Zetsuborg’s.

The fight is okay with some good animation.

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Twilight insults people’s dreams to Flora’s face, saying she’s a real princess who’s already sublime, noble, and beautiful and thus she doesn’t need a dream like Flora. Flora, Mermaid and Twinkle say they’ll protect everyone’s dreams, dreams aren’t pathetic. And they use Trinity Lumiere to defeat the Zetsuborg. After this Haruka continues to practice with the violin, no longer locking away her heart. While back in the Hope Kingdom Twilight says she’ll cover the world in despair.

I like Twilight. But I do not like what ends up being done with her.

So episode 14 is up next.

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It’s the day at Noble Academy where families come visit. Haruharu is happy to see her parents and little sister. Kind of surprising that she’s a big sister. But anyways her little sister isn’t happy to see her. Annnnd there’s not really a whole lot to say about this episode or Haruka’s family, they stay as very minor characters and aren’t important. It turns out Momoka is upset because she was worried that Haruka was feeling lonely at the academy but it turns out Haruka is really happy and she wonders if Haruka isn’t thinking about her family. Yadda yadda yadda everything gets resolved.

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Shut and Twilight come again and Shut turns Haruka’s family into a Zetsuborg, Shut really likes Twilight. It seems Twilight’s key reacts to or needs to be filled with despair. Shut makes fun of Haruka’s family because their dream is to make Haruka’s dream come true. Haruka is understandably pissed off at this.

As a side note Kirara’s mom didn’t come visit because she’s busy, Kirara doesn’t mind this and has no problem just cheering on her mom.

Next episode Haruka has improved on her ability to do afternoon tea and the princess lessons are in general going very well. Aroma says they all still have a long ways to go before becoming Grand Princesses but Shamour reminds him that he and Puff are still only butler and maid apprentices too. So he shouldn’t be so high and mighty.

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Shamour tells Aroma to serve Haruharu as a lesson tomorrow and she turns both him and Puff into humans next morning so they can practice their work. Human Puff is cute. As we learn Aroma is too much of a stickler to his set schedule (not like Haruka is much of a princess at this point though) but he’s trying his hardest and eventually he ends up meeting a real butler and learning from him. He realizes that he needs to be more considerate of his masters feelings and desires instead of just forcing them along his “perfect” schedule. Lock also comes out with Twilight this episode, much to Shut’s chagrin, but there isn’t much to say about that. The fight is good and has nice animation.

Now on to episode 16.

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The episode opens with a short flashback showing how Minami almost drowned as a child but she was rescued by a dolphin. Then we go to the girls on vacation at a resort owned by Minami’s family, it’s managed by her brother Wataru who we now get introduced to. And the dolphin that rescued Minami years ago still lives around there and Minami is friends with her, she named it Tina. Minami tells Haruka and Kirara that she plans to become a manager in her family’s company just like her brother. She loves the ocean and sea life so she’d like to do something like her brother at a resort like this.

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While Minami and her brother are having a nice chat (they have a sweet sibling relationship) Twilight is spying on them and for reasons unknown even to herself her heart begins to hurt when she sees how happily the two of them are getting along. She then has Lock go and turn Wataru into a Zetsuborg. It’s a cool looking killer whale Zetsuborg and the animation and fighting this episode is pretty good.

Kanata meanwhile contacts Haruka and Kirara to tell them that he senses a new Dress-Up Key, the two of them then realize that a Zetsuborg has been made and they rush over to Minami so all three of them can transform and fight.

Shut is also there and he creates his own Zetsuborg. Mermaid fights her brothers while Flora and Twinkle fight the one Shut made.

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While fighting Tina comes in to help Mermaid and gets injured. Mermaid remembers again when Tina rescued her and she wishes she could help Tina too, and the rest of the ocean, her feelings bring out a new Dress Up Key. It’s one of the Miracle Dress Up Keys, the Bubble Key.

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The power of the key heals Tina and Mermaid now uses it for a new powered up attack, Precure Bubble Ripple. She incapacitates the two Zetsuborg’s and then the girls finish them off with Trinity Lumiere.

Episode 17 up next.

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Kirara is putting on a show with her own. It’s produced by the guy back from when Kirara first became a Cure. We now get to physically meet Kirara’s mom “Stella”. She really likes her daughter, she’s very affectionate, and she’s super happy to meet Kirara’s friends. She seemed surprised that Kirara had friends.

Kirara really feels the need to match her moms star power and captivatingness.

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While the girls are all hanging out together Kirara gets annoyed and embarrassed by her moms childish behavior. And how messy her apartment is, her mom is basically a kid. Kirara eventually blows up at how carefree her mom is being while she’s worried about not being able to match up to her in the show. She also vents to Haruharu and Minami about how critical her mom was when she was growing up.

Twilight and Shut attack the show the next day, Shut creates a Zetsuborg out of Stella and Kirara sees that her moms dream is to stand on the same stage as Kirara. Kirara gets now that her mom just wanted her to relax yesterday before the big show and the girls transform and fight.

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Twinkle is powered up from knowing what her moms dream is. She wishes for the same thing and a new Dress-Up Key comes out of her mom. The Miracle Dress-Up Key, Shooting Star. Just like last episode Twinkle uses her new attack to incapacitate the Zetsuborg and the girls finish it off together with Trinity Lumiere.

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After that the show is a big success. Kirara’s mom tells her she has a new dream now, for the both of them to be top models together. Kirara says she’ll get there. The two of them have a very cute relationship.

So next episode is a fairly important one, it starts the ball rolling to the mid-season climax.

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The author of The Flower Princess is coming to town. They’ve never appeared in public before this. Yui is excited to meet her too since she wants to be an author. And obviously since the flower princess is Haruka’s inspiration she’s very much looking forward to it. She also wants to ask the author about the books ending and if it will be continued, since it had something of an open-ending.

In the Hope Kingdom Dyspear is angry that the Precure have acquired new Keys. Twilight says she will defeat the Precure now with her own hands. For this Dyspear pulls out another evil looking Key from her body and gives it to Twilight for extra power.

Haruka meets the author and gets her to sign her copy of the book, but when Haruka asks what happened after the end of the story but the author says she isn’t planning on making a solid end or continuation to it.

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She tells Haruka that she originally wrote the story for her daughter to raise her as a proper princess and had her own ending in mind, but when she received all the fan letters from children who had read her book, who had told her their wishes for the story and what would become of the flower princess, she decided to leave the story’s end open. She left it like that because everyone has their own story in their head and what they want to happen to their beloved character. They had their own idea of the flower princess. Haruka of course has one too.

Twilight then attacks. She turns the area around them into a battleground and puts all the civilians into these mirror things and sucks up the despair from them as energy.

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It’s a pretty nice fight, Twilight has good theme music and the animation here is really good. Twilight is able to effortlessly handle the girls, she completely outmatches them. She tells Flora that she lacks what it means to be a Princess. She can’t be like Twilight who was born into greatness. The girls still are determined and fight back but their new Dress-Up Key attacks fail to harm Twilight.

Twilight then attempts to burn and destroy Flora’s copy of The Flower Princess.

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But Flora grabs it and tells Twilight that she has her own idea of what a princess is deep in her heart, not like Twilight but like the strong, kind and beautiful flower princess from the book. It’s Flora’s dream to become that princess.

Her Miracle Dress-Up Key then comes out of the book, the Lily Key. She uses it to overpower Twilight with her new attack Lys Tourbillon.

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And now that they all have their Miracle Keys they can use a new group attack, Precure Trinity Explosion… it’s basically just Trinity Lumiere but stronger. Twilight is shocked to be defeated but she still refuses to acknowledge Flora’s idea of a princess or that she is one.

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Haruka later realizes that the flower princess embodies the same ideals of the Grand Princess. She realizes her dream is connected to that and she reaffirms her desire to become a Grand Princess. We also learn at the end of the episode that the author of the book is also the headmaster of Noble Academy, who after meeting Haruka and seeing Flora (when she was rescued) has decided to start working on a continuation of The Flower Princess.

Now we come to episode 19.

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Haruka has really improved on the violin, but she still makes some mistakes. Miss Shamour mentions how Kanata taught the song she’s playing to his little sister, the princes of Hope Kingdom. A character who has never been mentioned or even implied to exist before now. She loved the violin and was good at it. And as it turns out the song Haruka is practicing is the same one Twilight plays…. hm, what could that mean?

Haruka thinks she still needs to improve a lot at everything but the others mention at how well she’s done at ballet, tea, and the violin. Meanwhile in the Hope Kingdom Twilight is angry at her defeat so Shut goes out to fight alone. This episode is mostly filler as the girls just go on a scavenger hunt in their dorm with the other students, they interact with other students and expand their friendships. It’s kind of a breather episode before the climax really starts.

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In the Hope Kingdom Kanata’s staff reacts, letting him know that the Precure found another key. While at the same time Twilight stumbled upon some old building/castle on the outskirts of the kingdom, she felt drawn there, inside of it she finds a Princess Perfume. She says she’ll use it to become stronger.

Okay so at episode 20 the mid-season climax truly begins.

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There’s actually a short little message at the beginning of the opening theme song celebrating Precure’s 555th episode. For the episode proper it starts with Dyspear creating another key for Twilight to use with the Perfume. When this happens the 9 Keys the Precure have react and with their power the girls are all transported to the Hope Kingdom.

When there the keys continue to emit a light, leading the girls somewhere, they’ve also been separated. Dyspear also sensed their arrival. There are some random Zetsuborg’s in the Kingdom so Haruka transforms to fight them.

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Kanata arrives to help her and they defeat the Zetsuborg’s. Their reunion is pretty sweet, both are very happy to see each other again. Haruka continues to follow the light from the key, as do Minami and Kirara.

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The keys end up leading each girl to their own castle like Twilight found last episode, Kanata recognizes that the one Haruka is at has the Flower Princesses coat of arms on it. They are lead to a special dais that has a place to insert the key into and when they do it seems to awaken the spirit of the past Precure. The past Precure tells the girls how they sealed away the evil in the past but they knew it would eventually return even stronger one day so they created a 4th Perfume. But now darkness is approaching that Perfume, they tell the girls that they can’t let that Perfume fall into the hands of evil.

I like how there’s an actual explanation to why there’s a 4th Perfume that no one else knew about.

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After hearing from the past Precure the girls resolve to win and get the Perfume. The Keys now light the way to the main castle of the Hope Kingdom for all of them. But Shut and Lock show up to fight Mermaid and Twinkle.

While that happens Haruka is traveling with Kanata. She mentions to him how she’s learning the violin and she asks about his sister. He tells her her name is Towa but she’s been missing for years. Towa also wanted to be a Precure and a Grand Princess. When she disappeared the hearts of the people in the Hope Kingdom weakened and they lost their dreams, Towa was the bright light of the kingdom. Because of this the people were easy pickings for Dyspear.

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But Kanata found hope again when he met Haruka, she gave him his dream back and he was able to withstand Dyspear and Dysdark because of it. Mermaid and Twinkle then get away from Shut and Lock and they make it to the castle with Haruka and Kanata.

But then…

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Twilight greets them, Kanata immediately recognizes her as Towa. She has no idea who he is though, she says she’s Dyspear’s daughter Twilight and she uses her Perfume and key to transform. It’s a pretty cool transformation.

So yeah. A character who was only mentioned last episode turns out to be Twilight. I dislike this for several reasons. There was only the vaguest of hints that something was up with Twilight back in episode 16 when she was watching Minami and her brother. I also don’t like that again we’re going with brainwashing, I HATE BRAINWASHING. It sucked in Suite and sucked even harder in Doki Doki. It doesn’t help that Twilight/Towa’s story is basically EXACTLY THE SAME as Regina and Ace’s, just combined into one character. WE JUST DID THIS SHIT.

It’s become plainly obvious that there will never be a villain turning good and becoming a Cure story that is done as well as Fresh did with Eas again.

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At the beginning of episode 21 we see a flashback of a young Towa wishing she could become a Grand Princess, she then hears Dyspear’s voice calling to her, saying she’ll make her dream come true. Towa is scared but Dyspear says she’ll miss her chance if she doesn’t come to her so Towa goes to Dyspear, walking into what appears to be a forest of thorns.

In the present she is now the Black Princess and she attacks the Precure and Kanata. There’s some nice animation this fight but the fight itself isn’t especially good. Flora feels a greater and eviler power from the Key Twilight has, Kanata thinks the Perfume she’s using will burn through Towa. The girls now fight to not just defeat Twilight but to save Towa from the black Keys.

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The Miracle Key attacks they have aren’t strong enough though and Twilight enters her own Mode Elegant to unleash a powerful attack on them. Dyspear then creates a projection of herself again and tells them the truth of what happened to Towa. Towa wanted to achieve her dream but it seemed so far away, she was getting depressed that maybe she’d never become a Grand Princess. Towa’s worries ended up awakening Dyspear and then Towa eventually chose to come into the forest of despair herself after Dyspear called for her.

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Dyspear did this to remove the symbol of hope from Kanata and the Hope Kingdom. It succeeded as we know and she was able to feed on the citizens despair and grow stronger, eventually being able to physically manifest and attack the Hope Kingdom. And then she decided to turn Towa into Twilight cause she’s just evil like that.

Sooooo…. this backstory is almost exactly like what happened in the last two seasons, as I mentioned in my Happiness Charge review.

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Flora wont back down to Twilight and Dyspear though, she says dreams and hope still exist. Shut and Lock are watching the fight too, Shut is fanboying over Twilight’s beauty and eventually Mermaid and Twinkle start fighting them to keep them out of Flora’s fight with Twilight.

Flora says Twilight’s heart and dreams are still inside her, they’ve just been locked away, she knows this because of the beautiful violin she can play. Twilight said you lock away your heart to play the violin but Haruka was moved by Twilight’s music. Her feelings for Kanata and her dream are still inside her. The Precure then use Trinity Explosion on Twilight.

The Black Keys protect her but Kanata begins playing the violin to awaken Towa’s heart. He says he wants to play with her again.

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And the hope and light of dreams comes from Towa’s body, the Perfume and Black Keys lose their power and Trinity Explosion completely overtakes Twilight, purifying her and turning her completely back into Towa. Shut is downright horrified that his beautiful dark princess has become a normal girl.

Dyspear is angered and she sends her thorns after the girls and Kanata to kill them as they try to leave the Hope Kingdom through the door that Puff and Aroma originally used to go to Earth.

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Kanata chooses to sacrifice himself so the others can make it and he can destroy the door so Dyspear’s power can’t follow them to Earth. He wants to protect Towa. Haruka must fulfill her dream now, he asks her to take care of Towa as well. He wishes to meet them again as Dyspear comes upon them.

The rest make it out safely as the episode ends.

So now to episode 22. Which is a pretty fancy and good looking episode.

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The girls return with Towa to the dorm while Shut is brokenhearted over Twilight and Lock wonders where Dyspear is as her throne in the castle is empty. Towa has a dream that night about her brother… and Twilight and she wakes up suddenly. She has the Perfume and the 3 Keys from Dyspear still with her, she goes outside and starts wandering around until she hears Haruka playing the violin.

Haruka is going to give Towa her brothers violin (they brought it with them to Earth) but Towa doesn’t want it, she feels horrified by what she’s done.

Dyspear then suddenly appears. Uhh… guess destroying the door was only an incredibly temporary thing.

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Dyspear asks Towa to come back to her, to continue being Twilight. She also taunts them about Kanata. She says Towa’s dreams ended the moment she walked into the forest of despair, just keep despairing. She then summons her thorns and envelopes herself and Towa in them, creating a tower that feeds off of Towa’s despair and sends it into Dyspear for power.

Minami and Kirara show up too and the three transform and fight Dyspear. She can create these shadow things similar to what Despariah used to fight. The Precure can’t stand up to her power at all. But Flora still says she’ll save Towa, Kanata asked her to take care of her. She thinks that playing the violin might awaken Towa’s heart again and she’s able to make it into the thorn tower while Mermaid and Twinkle occupy Dyspear.

Towa tells her not to play, she doesn’t want to remember all the horrible things she’s done and what she’s lost. She has no home and no dream anymore. Flora says that isn’t true. She can still become a Grand Princess, just believe in yourself from the bottom of your heart, that’s what Kanata told her. Flora wants her and Towa to move forward together. Flora begins to play the violin for her, and all of this reminds Towa of her brother and what he would say to her.

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Towa starts to play with her. Eventually the despair disappears and Dyspear powers down. I really hate writing the name Dyspear. Towa then thinks about how Kanata told her to never give up, being the light of hope is being the Grand Princess. The thorns recede as well, this whole violin playing scene is very pretty.

Towa says she will not despair anymore. She’ll live with what she did and make up for it and eventually achieve her dream of becoming a Grand Princess. The Black Keys and Perfume with her turn red and she transforms into the 4th Precure.

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It’s a good transformation. Very reminiscent of Ace’s but not quite as good. There’s good music and animation to accompany her in the fight afterwards. Scarlet says that one day she’ll rescue the Hope Kingdom and her brother, and until then she’ll continue fighting Dyspear.

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She uses her key to go into Mode Elegant and Kanata’s violin also transforms into her “Princess Rod”. She uses the Phoenix Key she has to use her attack, Precure Phoenix Blaze, on Dyspear. It hurts Dyspear quite a bit and she has to retreat.

At the end of the episode Scarlet says how she can feel through the violin that Kanata is still alive, she and Flora say they’ll meet him again. And the first half of GoPrincess ends.

I mean, I guess the mid-season climax was okay but there’s definitely been better. A lot of things in it just super reminiscent of what Fresh did with Setsuna and what Suite did with Ellen. And then what happened in 22 is a lot like what previous villains have done trying to get the recently turned girl to go back to being evil. And despite the really good animation the fights were actually not that good. Dyspear is not an interesting villain either and everyone about her is just so stale now, we’ve seen it all before so many times and she has nothing new to bring. And the fact that Towa was brainwashed into Twilight also bothers me because the character of Twilight is gone completely without any sort of real “defeat” of her character and beliefs. It’s the same thing that bothered me about Professor Sabaaku back in Heartcatch, the Sabaaku identity was gone the moment the mask was gone and Yuri’s father was 100% good afterwards. Seiji’s brainwashing in the finale of Happiness Charge is one of the few good brainwashing examples in Precure, that was done well. In part because he was a more prominent character that we knew a lot about and had been well developed. Whereas Twilight and Towa were not.

Really I wish Twilight was a villain the whole show and Towa didn’t exist. Not that I dislike Towa and don’t enjoy her presence in subsequent episodes but I just think the show would be better and more interesting with Twilight as a villain and a true foil to Haruka’s idea of a Princess. Twilight’s turn back into Towa just wasn’t very moving because of how lacking the characters relationships were. Regina’s momentary turn in the mid-season climax of Doki was better done, it was built up much better. And then it wouldn’t be a done to death 4 Cure season with yet another villain turned cure either.

Okay so now to go over some other general things. The music is great and the animation is great. The music especially has a lot of really cool sounding orchestral and violin pieces. I think it might have the best soundtrack of this era of Precure. The standard episode fighting is generally pretty good but not on Heartcatch’s level and maybe not GoGo’s either. The themes of the show are done very well but it’s just like Happiness Charge where the show is just constantly beating you over the head. I suppose “never giving up” is actually a much more important theme in GoPrincess than usual for Precure, it’s important in the finale. Each girl has an obvious character arc and dream that they’re working towards and they get plenty of development on that, it’s not until the second half though that this really gets more focused. Still Haruka has a steady progression towards her dream, even though she never actually changes or evolves as a person. None of them really do except maybe Kirara. It’s kind of hard for a robot like Minami to evolve though.

Side characters are okay. A lot of people really like Yui and I know a ton wanted her to become a Precure but I never really got the appeal. She’s a fine support character but there have been better. Like Seiji from just last season. The fairies are just okay as I said above.

Well what about our villains? Well… what about them? Dyspear and Close are two big nothings. Lock doesn’t do anything, he’s been the villain in 4 episodes and two of those were shared with Twilight. Shut is definitely the best and his fanboying of Twilight made him fun but he hasn’t gotten to be really fun yet, that happens later in the second half. He’s still the best thing about the show though. When Close died I was initially really happy because I thought GoPrincess was gonna be going back to an older style of Precure that regularly killed off villains, it would’ve been refreshing. But alas… well, I’ll get to that when the time comes.

I remember the producers of GoPrincess said that it would be “Unprecure” before it aired. The most Unprecure thing about it is the girls being at a boarding school.

Hmm, you know before I get to the next episode I just have something I’m  wondering about. I mean it seems almost every season we have a main villain who just sits around and doesn’t do anything for no or almost no reason. Dyspear, what’s your excuse for doing this? Maybe we should ask the older villains why they didn’t do anything themselves first?

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“I didn’t do anything myself because I’m anchored to the Dark Zone.”

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“I didn’t do anything myself because I’m anchored to Dark Fall… I think.”

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“Fuck off.”

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“I didn’t do anything because I’m just an old decrepit crazy lady.”

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“I’m just an idiot.”

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“I have an entire planet to run you slouches.”

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“I was asleep and halfway across the galaxy for most of the show.”

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“I was sealed in stone for most of the show. And I still did everything.”

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“I was literally dead for 95% of the show.”

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“Same as Noise. Except for the second part.”

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“Well, don’t ask me about the timeline but I still had my proxy doing everything and once she was gone I started taking care of business myself.”

Well that settles that, so Dyspear after hearing from the past villains what’s your answer?

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“Hm. Guess I have to say a combination of Despariah and the Director.”

Alright enough of that, Time to move on to episode 23.

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So Shamour is happy to see Towa. Towa at this point is thinking about how to make up for her past deeds. That’s when Haruka and the others come in and ask her to come hang out with them. They want to make her feel like a friend and they take her shopping and to eat donuts etc.

But Towa says she shouldn’t be allowed to feel happy until the Hope Kingdom is saved and she runs off from them.

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She tries to learn some things about Earth but it’s clear a princess doesn’t have much knowledge of how the world works. She’s cute at least. She also ends up running into the principal of Noble Academy, the author that she partially locked away in despair back in episode 18.

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At this time Dyspear is returning to the forest of despair to heal herself. She leaves a device with Lock that can gather despair and puts him in charge for now. This upsets Shut.

Towa meanwhile is eating with the principal. She’s perturbed by everyone’s kindness here. The principal can tell something is up with her and tells her that she needs to fill her heart with warm feelings to do anything. Lock then arrives and turns the principal into a Zetsuborg so Towa transforms and fights.

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Lock says all of this is her fault and taunts her about the Hope Kingdom and Kanata to distract her. He says she’s to blame for all of it. He then uses the despair gathering device to suck out more despair from the principal and power up his Zetsuborg. It also seems to physically empower Lock too. The other girls arrive to save Scarlet right on time though.

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Flora is upset to see her favorite author’s dream locked away. Scarlet is concerned for the others but Flora tells her to just be happy, when there are warm and fun times just laugh and be happy and fill your heart with warm feelings. Scarlet accepts this, realizing her down in the dumps attitude wasn’t helping anything. She apologizes for what she did in the past and promises to help everyone Dyspear’s hurt.

The girls use their Miracle Key attacks on the Zetsuborg to weaken it and Scarlet finishes it off with Phoenix Blaze.

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After retreating to the Hope Kingdom Lock powers himself up further and becomes an adult. Alright.

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Later the girls get called to the principal’s office to meet her and they’re quite surprised to find out who she is. She’s surprised to see Towa as well (it turns out everyone was aware that the girls had a “guest” in their dorm but the show just glossed over this part) and she offers to allow her to enroll in Noble Academy. Towa is happy to accept.

Okay so this arc is actually my favorite part of GoPrincess. I think generally it’s the most fun and plainly enjoyable part of the show when Lock takes over as the main threat and it also has a nice conclusion. And Towa is cute so there’s that, her civilian hair is like Ace’s Cure hair. There are some good episodes to come revolving around her. Also it’s summer and the girls are now wearing their summer clothes, Kirara has an exposed midriff the whole time. Too lewd.

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So Towa rooms with Kirara and as is typical for Precure she has a rather awkward and silly introduction to the rest of her class. Towa wants to find her life goal at school… besides saving the Hope Kingdom and becoming a Grand Princess I guess. Puff and Aroma think they have all 12 Dress-Up Keys now but Towa tells them the three she has were made by Dyspear. So there are still 3 to go.

Kirara meanwhile is working hard on her modeling. She finds it a little exhausting being around Towa all the time and having to deal with her in class. She also gets annoyed at Towa not doing anything like getting her own food etc. And Towa is upset at Kirara implying she can’t do anything herself. The two of them just don’t really get along well.

Meanwhile Shut sees Lock’s new form and he’s quite surprised, he also thinks Lock seems a bit “darker”. It’s certainly true Lock has become a bit more threatening. Lock then goes to Earth and creates a Zetsuborg out of someone.

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Towa and Kirara end up working together and bonding. Towa reminisces about how she would spend her days in the Hope Kingdom and she asks Kirara to teach her how to smile, thinking she’s forgotten how after all that’s happened. She wants to feel warmth again. Kirara tells her she already knows how to smile and she starts tickling her. She doesn’t need to think so hard about it. And so the two of them are friends now.

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The girls all then become aware of the Zetsuborg and go to fight Lock. They’re also surprised by his change but they still simply transform all together. We saw the group pose for the first time last episode but this is the first time all 4 of them transform together. And they defeat the Zetsuborg with relative ease.

Okay so now we get to episode 25. It’s officially summer vacation now and everyone is going to Haruharu’s house to stay over. Towa is surprised to be coming along too. And… that’s about it. Not much happens this episode even though it’s essentially the bonding episode for Minami and Towa.

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Towa at one point has a nightmare about Dyspear, she confides in Minami about it because Minami was someone who had a fear she didn’t want to admit to either. For the fight Shut shows up even though he wasn’t planning to actually do anything. He sees Towa and gets pissed off about how his beautiful Twilight is gone and replaced by her. Shut kind of thinks Scarlet is beautiful too but that just annoys him more. Shut is great. Minami tells Shut that Twilight is no more, there’s only Towa. BONDING AND FRIENDSHIP.

Okay so now we’re at episode 26 which is sort of silly and sort of serious at the same time. Towa gets a fever while the other girls are still away somewhere else for summer vacation so Puff and Aroma have to take care of her, Aroma calls the girls to get them to come back to the academy while Puff nurses Towa. The visuals in the opening also change slightly starting here.

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Shut comes by the academy and ends up making a Zetsuborg from a cicada… he is not in the best frame of mind this episode. But he is hilarious. Puff and Aroma end up fighting it and their strong desires to protect Towa awaken a special power in them that lets them transform. The other girls also arrive and everyone transforms to fight the Zetsuborg, Puff and Aroma help out too. Shamour later says that there’s a legend in Hope Kingdom that says the Royal Fairies that truly wish to help the Princess Precure from the bottom of their hearts can do something like this, but she thought it was merely a legend because no one else had done it before. At the end of the episode there’s a new ending song, it’s pretty catchy.

Episode 27 is the summer festival. Everyone looks cute in their Yukata’s. Haruharu runs into Yuuki and has a fun time at the festival with him, not alone though, everyone else is still with them. She also learns that he hurt his elbow and was dropped from the main tennis team so lately he’s been upset and hasn’t been as enthusiastic about his teams upcoming training camp.

Shut is also the villain for the third time in a row. He realizes he needs to just get over Twilight and his annoyance over Lock and just collect despair for Dyspear. And so he turns Yuuki’s fangirls who I have never mentioned before into Zetsuborg’s.

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Yuuki sees the fighting, Flora takes him away and he asks her what she’s fighting them for. Flora tells him they fight to protect everyone’s dreams. Yuuki thinks they’re amazing but thinks it’s pointless for him because he can’t play in the next tournament. And no one understands how much it upsets him to make it onto the main team but then be temporarily booted off it. Even though there will be other tournaments in the future.

Flora however isn’t having any of this angsty crap. She tells him to shape up and realize how childish he’s being. Everyone is supporting him and cares about him so he needs to stop being so selfish and deal with it. Good advice. Anyways Yuuki does get over himself and the girls defeat the Zetsuborg’s.

So episode 28 starts a 3 episode story dealing with Lock’s (who hasn’t even appeared since episode 24) master plan and finishes off this arc of GoPrincess. It also does something heinous.

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For the first time in Precure the girls actually wear swimsuits to the beach in the actual show. There has been official art and Miki wore her school/swim team swimsuit once in Fresh but this is the first time the girls have really been seen in swimsuits in an episode. It was quite shocking.

So anyways the girls are at the beach at Minami’s family’s private island. Towa can’t swim but she’s too embarrassed to say anything about it. Towa ends up hanging out with Yui a little, who also isn’t really a good swimmer. Yui says she’s still happy to be with all of them even if she can’t swim, Towa seems to get that that’s what’s really important too. Towa says she’s envious of how honest Yui can be. Yui says she’s envious of Towa, how she’s a Precure and how she fights to protect people. Yui says she wanted to be a Precure but realized she can’t fight like them, so one day she wishes to tell the whole world about their deeds with her stories.

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Lock then shows up and turns Yui into a Zetsuborg. She’s actually able to resist his power for a second, guess she has practice after the other time. Lock has also revealed an ability to copy himself. I assume he has this power because the plot would not work without it. He and his copies attack the other three girls while Scarlet fights the Zetsuborg.

Scarlet is getting beat but in a nod to the first episode when Flora got serious to stop the Zetsuborg from crushing a flower Scarlet also gets a sudden power boost to stop this Zetsuborg from stepping on Yui’s picture journal. Scarlet thinks about what everyone is fighting for, how much they care about her and how much she cares about them and she gains the strength to defeat the Zetsuborg.

The other girls also drive off the Lock copies but Lock wasn’t fighting to win, he sneakily stole the Dress-Up Keys right off the girls when they weren’t paying enough attention. That was his goal all along.

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Scarlet gains a new key from her revelation and deeds. The Sun Key. Yui names it after Towa says she’s like the sun shining down on the Precure. Towa then finally yells out that she can’t swim and the other girls tease and have fun with her about it. But at the end of the episode the girls realize that their Dress-Up Keys are missing.

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Now what is Lock going to do with them?

On to episode 29. Towa still has her keys and she tries to assure the others that she can still fight and they can get the keys back. Puff later has a dream that night where she sees Dress-Up Keys leading her somewhere. She wakes up and the next morning she goes searching for them with everyone, the keys called out to her in her dreams. But suddenly Haruka, Minami and Kirara go missing together.

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The three of them don’t know how they got separated from the others. Eventually they come across an old building in the forest and see that there’s a table for a tea party inside. There are also 3 mysterious girls.

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Meanwhile Lock combines the keys he stole with his own dark power. He locks away the keys in a cage and draws out the energy from them, simultaneously turning the power of dreams from the keys into despair energy. With this he’s able to instantly fill up the despair gathering device.

Haruka, Minami and Kirara drink tea and enjoy the time with the 3 other girls. After some prompting they tell the girls that they lost their important keys that allow them to protect people’s dreams. They tell the 3 other girls what their dreams are and the 3 wish that Haruka’s, Minami’s and Kirara’s dreams can come true. Suddenly a Zetsuborg appears at the party, and even Dyspear herself.

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Haruka and the others protect the mysterious girls and lead them to safety, upset that they can’t fight without their keys but still doing everything they can to protect these girls. When cornered Haruka says they have to do something even if they can’t transform. They still have to protect their and everyone elses dreams. Them not bowing down even in the face of death unlocks new power from them.

The mysterious girls give them new Dress-Up keys , allowing the girls to transform and defeat the phantom Zetsuborg and Dyspear.

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Haruka and them realize the mysterious girls are actually the past Precure. They’re inside their memories after being called into their dreams. The worries of Haruka, Minami and Kirara drew them together but since the girls now realize what’s truly important and will never despair things are okay now. The past Precure tell them that despair will revive again and be even stronger but it’s their fight now and they bestow upon them the Legendary Dress-Up Keys.

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The Sakura, Coral and Galaxy Keys. Also although the girls were able to transform in the dream they cannot transform for real, they still need their original keys back. Yui, Towa, Puff and Aroma also reunite with them on the beach.

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In the Hope Kingdom Lock uses the gathered up despair energy to turn the entire castle into a gigantic Zetsuborg. It flies up and breaks through dimensions so Lock can attack Earth. But as Lock leaves a strange crow is watching him. Wait. Crow? Oh god damn it.

Episode 30 up now. A big one. If the girls can get all their keys back they’ll now have the 12 original keys plus Scarlet’s.

So the castle fires an energy blast at the girls but Scarlet blocks it. A Lock copy comes to fight Scarlet, Lock says he will become the king of despair. The girls besides Scarlet plan to go inside the castle to retrieve their keys, the Legendary keys they have with them react to the keys in Lock’s cage and the girls are able to essentially teleport themselves inside the castle with the Legendary power. Scarlet now spends most of the episode fighting the copy. And when the others get inside the castle Aroma harasses the other copy so the girls and Puff can get to the throne room.

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And that damn bird is now on Earth watching everything.

So the original Lock is in the throne room. He tells them he did all of this on his own and he plans to take Dyspear’s place and make the world fall into despair all on his own. He proceeds to toy with the girls, treating it as the kind of game he likes, but his arrogance is his undoing. Only too late does he notice the new Dress-Up Keys the girls have attained and Puff helps Haruka reach the cage so she can use her Sakura Key to unlock the other keys. Scarlet also defeat her Lock copy. The castle is still a Zetsuborg though.

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The girls get their keys back and transform but Lock isn’t close to being done yet. He reabsorbs his two copies and then takes in all the despair energy that still permeates the castle. Going into a super mode just like Close Lock transforms into a gigantic toad/dragon thing. There is some awesome music here, the animation is amazing and it’s the best fight of the show so far. There was also some alright action earlier when Scarlet was fighting.

The girls are no match for Lock like this and their attacks do nothing. He says he’s surpassed Dyspear who was defeated by the keys and proceeds to knock the girls around. Scarlet luckily arrives to save them.

The girls remember that they didn’t just get Keys from their predecessors but their feelings, memories, and dreams. And they’re fighting for the dreams of everyone. All 4 of them now fight Lock together and their hearts as one cause all of the Dress-Up Keys powers to unite. The Legendary Keys and Scarlet’s Sun Key (which I suppose must be her version of a Legendary Key) lead the others and the entire Hope Kingdom castle is turned into a new Precure item. The Princess Palace.

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The girls use it for their new attack, they also get special Mode Elegants when they use it, Dress Up Premium. They use the attack on Lock to defeat him. Precure Eclat Espoir. In short I hate this attack. It’s too weird, too over the top, too busy and the castle item is just odd. While being purified Lock rages about how he’s not a puppet of despair and will become the king of despair.

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His body then falls to the ground (and his sweater vanishes) where it’s seen by the crow who uses the despair gathering device to suck up all the residual despair energy from Lock, filling up the gauge again.

And that ends that arc. So the girls now have all 12 Keys plus Scarlet’s and they just got a brand new item and ability that allowed them to defeat their toughest opponent yet. But there are still 20 episodes left. Something’s wrong. And I mean that in a meta sense too. What else is there now? Becoming a Grand Princess is the only thing left but that’s rather obtuse of a goal. In reality the girls don’t have anything solid to work for now.

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Haruka has a dream where she sees Kanata again. Unfortunately she’s woken up by Puff. Summer break has ended and classes are back in session at Noble Academy. But outside some strange seed like objects fall into the ground around the academy and the town nearby. What could they be?

Haruharu has really improved as a student and she’s gotten better at her princess lessons, still not perfect though.

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We learn that the girls found “Lock” after the battle. Turns out her was a fairy being controlled by the power of despair. Despite each villain having an animal themed super form it doesn’t really seem to make any sense or have any consistency. Close seems to actually have been made from a crow but Lock was a sweater that took control of a fairy and turned into a giant toad. Okay? Shut is similarly random. Anyways Shamour is taking care of him now, but he still hasn’t woken up yet.

Minami also makes mention of them needing to find all the Dress-Up Keys to… wait, what? They have all of the Dress-Up Keys? What?

Alright whatever let’s get to the plot of the episode.

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Close is back. He’s been tragically reborn without a personality. Which is really quite impressive. He’s more calm and collected but somehow even more of an edgelord at the same time.

The girls transform to fight him but he’s much stronger and he just no sells all their attacks and even some of their stronger Key attacks. Which makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. He then uses two of those seed looking things to create some new minions.

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Stop and Freeze. Who I’m somewhat reluctant to call characters. I make a joke about Close being born without a personality but Stop and Freeze are truly flat characters. They are furniture, essentially like what Trio the Minor were in early Suite episodes and they never improve. They might actually be special types of Zetsuborg’s created from despair, I dunno. Sue me. The two of them then go to create a Zetsuborg out of a student at the academy and after a boring fight the girls defeat it with Eclat Espoir.

Close tells them that even though they won despair just gives birth to more despair and grows bigger. He and the two drones retreat for now.

Shut is wandering around the Hope Kingdom, completely at a loss for what to do. Close arrives and tells him that he was revived, Shut is plainly shocked by this. Close shows him the despair gathering device and tells him he used it to take Lock’s power. He says despair will continue to be born and he uses the device on the forest of despair to revive Dyspear.

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The thorns create a new castle for them all and Dyspear is back to being fully healthy. Wait… was she really in such a bad situation just from Scarlet’s attack?

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Close says he planted the seeds of despair just like she ordered, they will now take root and slowly grow on Earth. What? She ordered him? That doesn’t make any sense… why would she have any faith or trust or him? Why did she allow him back in? She even tells Shut and the drones to listen to Close’s orders, why couldn’t Shut have done this job? Why is she so warm to him now after throwing him out so quickly and seeing him as a failure basically 5 episodes into the show? He revived her but even before he did this she must’ve essentially brought him back into the fold or else he couldn’t have dropped the seeds. The show gives a complete non-reason for why Dyspear brought back Close in the finale but really there’s no good answer. And why would the show bring back by far the most boring villain in the first place? His personality change has no explanation either.

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At the end of the episode we see a mysterious silhouette at night somewhere. Kanata?

And that’s episode 31, the final arc essentially starts now as there isn’t really anything else the Precure and villains are actively doing until the finale. There is a lot of meandering around later though. What I did really like about Lock’s arc is that a villain was actually doing something and had a mission. In the first half of the show Dyspear was just going after the Keys and trying to defeat the Precure but there was no larger goal for her. Lock had a goal and now we at least have something else the villains are actually doing with the planting of the despair seeds.

GoPrincess had the girls get the keys too fast. The Elegant Keys were basically irrelevant and hardly got used at all before the girls started getting the Miracle Keys. The princess lessons haven’t had a ton of focus lately either.

Another problem is that the Lock fight was the first big important fight that was actually a good fight. Sure the animation is usually good but the fight against Close and the two against Twilight and the one against Dyspear were way more flash than substance. They looked nice but they were pretty bad fights. Not like Heartcatch which had good fights that were also well animated for important events like Itsuki becoming Sunshine, the fight against Coupe, or Yuri becoming Moonlight again. The fight against Lock is so far the only one that has been really awesome, exciting, and great looking.

Next up is episode 32.

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You know what happens this episode? Nothing. We see that the creation of a Zetsuborg may accelerate the growth of the seeds of despair Close dropped. Minami and Haruka also reaffirm their friendship. There is nothing and no reason to go into detail about anything.

Episode 33. Shamour is giving a lesson on make-up, naturally everyone but Haruharu is perfect at it. This is a fun episode.

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“Lock” has woken up. His real name is Kuroro. He’s very shy but he’s also forgotten about his time as Lock. Miss Shamour goes out into the city with him and the girls go out following her. Turns out Shamour does all kinds of things in the city and she also teaches class to a bunch of the stray cats in the city. Shamour wants to get Kuroro to feel better but Kuroro is just dwelling on how much he wants to go back home and see everyone again. Shamour wants him to enjoy his time on Earth now and see the worth of it.

In the new thorn castle Shut gets interrupted while doing his make-up by Close. Close breaks his mirror and tells him to go collect despair, Shut’s really getting bossed around now and no one has any respect for him. He quickly shows up to attack the girls… but before he does anything Shamour criticizes his unfinished make-up. He gets angry and creates a Zetsuborg out of some of the cats.

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It leads to a pretty silly fight. What’s with Shut and animals now anyways?

Miss Shamour ends up fighting with Shut. She impresses him with her grace and beauty. She also can tell that there’s something bothering him and his heart is in turmoil as evident from his hasty and unfinished make-up. She says he’s lost his confidence and Shut collapses and starts to whine about how stressed he’s been lately. Shut is hilarious.

Shamour conjures up a mirror and they work on his make-up together.

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After all princesses need to learn how to cheer someone up, even if they’re an enemy. The girls agree with this and they defeat Shut’s Zetsuborg. Kuroro is also moved by all of this. He’ll enjoy his time on Earth and take back what he’s learned to the Hope Kingdom when the time comes.

Shut also leaves happily and shows off his make-up to Close. The idiot. Of course Close couldn’t care less, he just comments on how the forest of despair is growing bigger.

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At the end of the episode some of the cats give the girls something they found as a thank you. It’s a crest of the Hope Kingdom’s royal family. It has to be Kanata’s, the girls know he must be nearby now. I like this episode a lot and it’s really the start of Shut’s change too and such a big reason why he’s the best thing about GoPrincess.

Episode 34 has Haruharu enter a princess contest hoping to meet Kanata because reasons. The other girls help her out with the contest, especially Kirara. Like episode 32 this episode is about reaffirming Haruka and Kirara’s friendship and how they changed/support each other. Also like that episode there really isn’t much to talk about.

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Shut is still being an idiot so Stop and Freeze go out to create a Zetsuborg. Kirara has to fight it alone at first but Mermaid and Scarlet arrive to help her quickly. Haruka is about to go on at the contest, she does well using what Kirara taught her and after her turn she runs to the fight and the 4 of them defeat the Zetsuborg.

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Haruharu ended up winning the audience choice award for the contest and afterwards she spies someone walking across the street who looks like Kanata.

Onto episode 35. Movie scenes start appearing in the opening here.

Everyone goes searching through town for Kanata. Haruharu and Towa run into the violin maker, Towa apologizes for what she did all that time ago but it’s not like he remembers, he recognizes Kanata from the drawing they have with them. As it turns out Kanata is working in his shop.

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They’re overjoyed to see him but he doesn’t recognize them. He has amnesia. Really? REALLY? We’re doing a fucking amnesia plot? How’d he even escape from Dyspear and leave the Hope Kingdom anyways. This doesn’t make any sense.

Anyways the violin guy found Kanata collapsed on the beach a while ago. Kanata still knows about and recognizes violins even though his other memories are shot. The girls talk to him alone and tell him everything, Haruka even transforms in front of him, but he has trouble grasping it all and doesn’t remember anything really. He just has vague intuitions.  Towa plays the violin for him, their song, but although it feels nostalgic to him it doesn’t really help. And he can’t remember how to play the violin himself either.

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In the Hope Kingdom Close mentions to Dyspear that the seeds of despair are growing well. Shut wonders to himself where the gathered up despair has been going ever since Dyspear revived (we know). He also continues to get less and less respect.

Haruka takes Kanata to the place where they met years ago. But it still doesn’t jog his memory or make him remember their first meeting. Towa gets sad, she really wanted to apologize to Kanata for everything and to be a happy brother and sister again. She vows to get him back no matter what. Haruka wonders if they’re hurting him by trying to bring back his memories, since he always looks sad when they try.

Stop and Freeze then attack. There’s some pretty good fighting here.

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Flora says how much Kanata has supported her, because of him she was able to become a princess and now she can protect the dreams of everyone else too. She thanks him for everything and the girls defeat the Zetsuborg.

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Afterwards Haruka says it’s okay if they can’t bring Kanata’s memories back yet. He’s still Kanata. She knows this will make Towa sad but she says they should still become friends with Kanata like this and over time get to know each other. Towa accepts this but it’s still sad for her.

Episode 36. Everyone, including Kanata, is going to a party held on a cruise ship for Minami. Her family is officially inducting her into their business. It’s been Minami’s dream since she was little to join the real ranks and work in the family business. Since it’s out on the sea Minami also gets to see Tina again. This is an important episode for her character arc. It essentially starts her true character arc when she meets-

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Asuka. Asuka is a vet for marine life, she offers to show the girls her work at the local aquarium so they all go and see the fish, and penguins and sea lions. While there Asuka can tell how interested Minami is in sea life. Minami is also clearly interested in Asuka’s work.

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Asuka says Minami is well-suited for this job. It’s her intuition.

Later on at the party Minami gets introduced to all the guests, assuredly upper class and rich business owners themselves. And Minami sees that Asuka is also at the party.

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Minami learns from her parents that Asuka is one of the leading marine biologists in the world. Her parents invited her to the party and they ask her to join their company but Asuka refuses. She has her own dream to understand the sea and wants to always stay free and unfettered to anything else to accomplish this. Her words seem to resonate with Minami. Stop and Freeze then attack and turn her into a Zetsuborg.

It’s defeated without much fanfare. But what is Minami thinking now? Asuka later tells Minami that she reminds her of herself and that if she ever feels the drive to she should come join her. But she also says just kidding and tells Minami that her dream to become a member of the Kaidou group is a great one too. So she leaves Minami with her thoughts.

Minami had always loved and been connected to the sea. As her Precure name should make beyond obvious. But the show had also established that her dream truly was to follow in the footsteps of her parents and brother, this is the first time where it lays out a possible different course for Minami and one she truly seems to consider.

Now to episode 37.

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It’s the school festival. Haruharu’s class is putting on Romeo and Juliet. Yui recommended Haruka for the part of Juliet. Yui also wrote the screenplay too of course. The only problem is Haruka can’t act for shit. She doesn’t give up on it though and she even practices with Kanata to improve on it.

Stop and Freeze show up at the festival and create two Zetsuborg’s. One out of the guy who was going to play Romeo and another out of the girl directing the play. It’s a pretty fun fight. Flora gets pumped up because of how important today is and how hard everyone worked for it.

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Unfortunately the kid playing Romeo got hurt. Kanata offers to step in since he knows the lines now but Haruka actually says she doesn’t want that, she wants the play to be something purely of her classes creation, she doesn’t want any outside help. The guy playing Romeo also wants to perform and he decides to play through his injury. Haruharu also helps cover for him when she needs to. This is an interesting change up from how you’d expect things to go, I bet Nozomi would’ve been like “YES COCO PLEASE BE ROMEO!”. Same with Megumi and Blue. But the show throws a curveball and has Haruka really care more about her classmates hard work and the effort they put in. Haruka and Kanata have grown closer too after this episode.

So now we come to the important episodes 38 and 39 that wrap up a couple things.

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Episode 38 begins with the girls defeating a Zetsuborg made by Shut. Closes is watching, after doing absolutely nothing since episode 31, and decides to take out Flora since he sees her as the core of the Precure.

The next day Haruka is greeted by a student who supposedly goes to the class next to hers. His name is Kurosu. He says he dream to become a princess is famous around here. Haruka’s happy after meeting him because he’s one of the first people who didn’t laugh at her dream to become a princess.

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Meanwhile Kirara has an important modeling job that she’ll need to leave for soon and Minami also has been called to attend a party. She wasn’t sure about going to it though since that would just leave Haruka and Towa around. But Kurosu comes in and says it’s for her dream, it’s important to her right? Just as a sidenote it’s possible Minami has mixed feelings on going to it after meeting Asuka.

But Minami is convinced to go to the party. Haruka herself is happy to see this. Haruka and Shamour later talk to Kanata, who mentions that he can’t remember his dream or see the importance of them. Kurosu later actually brings the existence of a world picture book exhibition that’s happening tomorrow to the attention of Yui, he says the two of them should go together. When Kurosu asks Towa about her dream she tells him that it’s none of his business.

The next day Towa says she’s worried about Kurosu and is gonna go with Yui to the exhibition too. Haruka thinks Kurosu is a good person though. Of course Haruka is proven to be very wrong the next day when we see Kurosu abduct Puff and Aroma, leaving Haruka further alone today. Kanata luckily spies the two of them in a pet shop display.

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Kurosu meets up with Haruka, meanwhile Yui and Towa learn that the picture book event is fake. Kurosu and Haruka walk through the forest around the academy together. Haruka mentions how she was happy to see him today, she suddenly felt so lonely when Puff and Aroma disappeared and without her friends around, even though they’ve only been away for a little.

Kurosu says she sent away her friends herself. They care more about their dreams than Haruka and the more they go after their dreams the lonelier Haruka will get. And he reveals himself as Close.

Stop and Freeze also attack Towa to keep her away for now. Haruka transforms to fight Close, Close says the dreams of the Precure will break them apart, the more they chase after them will leave Haruka in the despair of loneliness. Kanata arrives to see them fighting and elsewhere Scarlet gets Stop and Freeze to back off.

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Flora thinks about Kanata telling her not to give up on her dreams. She refuses to despair. Even though she felt lonely she has everyone’s support even with them not around. They’re all working hard on their dreams so Flora has to work hard on hers too. With everyone who believes in her dream she will not give up.

Close is still stronger than her and he blasts her to the ground. Kanata goes to help her and while Close thinks he looks like the Hope Kingdom prince he can’t feel the power of dreams from him so thinks it must just be a coincidence. Kanata notices her injuries, she says it’s all for her dream to become a princess, the dream he supported. But Kanata…

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He says she’s bound by her dreams. He tells her it’s enough. If she hurts herself, if he’s the cause of her suffering, he was wrong. She should give up on her dream. She doesn’t need to become a princess anymore. Hearing this Flora’s transformation breaks.

The seeds of despair rapidly begin to grow. Close is quite happy with this turn of events and he leaves… you… you didn’t do anything Close…

Scarlet arrives and sees Haruka, wondering what the hell happened and Haruka just runs off. This was a mostly interesting episode.

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So on to episode 39. Towa asks Kanata what he was thinking and he says he can’t understand, are dreams worth protecting that much? Shamour says like this the old Kanata may never come back if he can’t understand the importance of dreams. Minami and Kirara come back and learn what happened to. They sort of blame themselves for leaving Haruka alone.

The thorns born from the seeds of despair are growing out of control and they pop up all over the town outside of Noble Academy. Lots of people are trapped in cages and turned into Zetsuborg’s. It’s essentially becoming a new forest of despair. Mermaid, Twinkly and Scarlet go to fight, they end up rescuing Kanata who’s running from it all.

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Haruka sees what’s going on and she goes to fight too. But she can’t transforms, the perfume and key don’t work anymore now that she’s lost her dream.

Close confronts the other Precure and tells them how soon the forest of despair will cover the whole world. He blames them for leaving Haruka on her own, and of course he thanks Kanata for making Haruka despair. Kanata is shocked. He had no idea that what he said would hurt Haruka so much. He goes searching for Haruka to try and right things.

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Haruka meanwhile thinks back on why she wanted to become a princess in the first place. She remembers the Flower Princess and how she wanted to be nice and pretty like her. That was it. She thinks of Kanata giving her the key and how her mother was fine with her dream as long as she grew up nice and healthy. She remembers how hard she worked to get into Noble Academy and everything that happened since she came here. Everyone she met and helped and who helped her. Haruka remembers what her dream was from the beginning.

Kanata finds her and apologizes. Haruka though already overcame things on her own.

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She realizes that even if someone tells her to stop trying to be a princess, even if that person is Kanata, that she never will and she’ll keep trying to become a princess. She came to Noble Academy for a reason, to be a princess. She isn’t the type to ever give up on her dream. Kanata realizes her dream is everything to her. Now he supports her again too.

Close sees Haruka. Haruka says she’ll protect her and everyone elses dream. Haruka thanks her past self who reminded her of where her dream came from and why she wanted to become a princess in the first place. No one can take that desire to become a princess away from her. She transforms into Cure Flora again.

We then get a real big brawl between both sides. Shut is there too and he fights with Scarlet, an insert song plays during all of this and there is pretty good animation. It’s a cool fight. Flora says Mermaid and Twinkle don’t need to feel bad for anything, since leaving her on her own just meant they believed in her. Close is beyond pissed but now this time he’s getting beat up by the Cures.

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Kanata comes in and says Haruka can definitely become a princess, he remembers everything now because he has a new dream. It unlocked his memories when he gained the desire to protect Haruka’s dream. Close also now realizes that he really is the Prince of the Hope Kingdom.

And from Kanata’s strong feelings a new power is gained.

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A new key is created and it works with the Palace to give the girls a powered up Mode Elegant and give them a new group attack. Using Mode Elegant Royal the girls hit Close, Stop, and Freeze with Precure Grand Printemps. The three of them are defeated but not destroyed and the forest of despair on Earth and Zetsuborg’s are all gone.

So new Keys can be made just like that? The new attack is completely pointless and unnecessary too. But this two episode finish to the arc was pretty good. Has some problems because the seeds of despair didn’t amount to much, after seeing them growing for the past 8 episodes things were taken care of in a pretty lackluster way. It’s really something that would’ve helped the finale and the seeds of despair plot shouldn’t have been resolved until then. Instead Kanata’s memories coming back and Haruka’s plot completely overshadowed what Close was doing. And now the villains basically do nothing until the finale again.

I really liked the way Haruka got her confidence and hope back. How she “rediscovered” her dream. Kanata got his memories back really quickly if you think about it though. He just reappeared in episode 35. This amnesia plot and Close’s revival, I wish that instead of Close coming back Dyspear brainwashed Kanata into becoming her servant. That would essentially entail doing Twilight all over again but I think it still would’ve been more interesting than what we got. It would’ve made more sense than Kanata somehow escaping and somehow losing his memories.

GoPrincess isn’t a bad show and it hasn’t even really had any bad episodes so far. But it’s in the dark age for a reason. If Doki was the Mary Sue mess and Happiness Charge was the soap opera that lost all steam then GoPrincess is the graveyard of imagination. And now the show basically just meanders about for a while with neither the Cures nor villains really having much of a story arc or mission that isn’t incidentally covered. And it all leads up to a pretty disappointing, short, and disjointed finale. Dyspear just doesn’t do anything.

Close is just shit compared to old villains like Gohyaan, Kawarino, Joker and Northa. He doesn’t have an air of power about him and neither is he disturbing, scheming, or intelligent like them. As a starter villain he was fine, a little boring, but you don’t need to do anything more with him like that. But in his role now he’s just bad and uncompelling. He doesn’t even work as well as a foil to Haruka because of how simple and boring he is.

On to episode 40. An important episode with dumb setup.

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Kanata plays the violin for everyone. Towa is happy to have him back and she starts to reconnect with him. She shows him how his violin become her magical item. The Royal Key then starts to act up suddenly. Towa seems possessed and she puts it into her perfume, with the words “Royal Majesty” they all get transported to the Hope Kingdom. So the brand new Key that came from nowhere last episode also does this, sure whatever. When they get to the Hope Kingdom they see that it’s basically all become a giant forest of despair, it’s overflowing with thorns.

Kuroro gets scared and runs off. Towa is upset at seeing what she’s helped make come to pass.

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Towa thinks about what her parents told her when she was young. How she is the princess and the light of the Hope Kingdom and as royals they need to be strong and smile for their citizens. If they’re sad then the people of the kingdom will be sad too. They need to be the hope of the people. Towa’s parents tell her to always be happy so the people can be happy too. Towa doesn’t say it but looking up at the door of despair now you can tell how much she’s burning with the desire to save everyone.

Miss Shamour and the fairies think about what happened after Towa disappeared, even though everyone was sad they still worked hard but Dysdark ended up taking them over anyways without the light that Towa brought to the kingdom.

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Kuroro remembers how his friends were trapped in cages and he got taken over by Lock.

Close meanwhile is apologizing to Dyspear for his failure. She’s surprised to learn that Kanata is alive and then she senses all of them inside the kingdom. She sends out a “clone” of herself, a lock from her body, that becomes a Zetsuborg to go fight them.

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The girls transform to fight it. Scarlet demands to have the Kingdom and the people back but Dyspear says it’s already too late. Everything has become drowned in despair. Scarlet also sees Kuroro crying and saying he wants to go home. She’s upset and not smiling at all.

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Kanata steps forward and also says he wants everything back. He tells Scarlet to remember what their parents told them, they need to be strong for their people, people like Kuroro, they need to have smiles on their faces to reassure their citizens and fill them with hope and confidence. Scarlet reassures Kuroro and now she herself confidently strides forward to continue fighting the Dyspear Zetsuborg as the princess of the Hope Kingdom. The other girls join her and they defeat the Zetsuborg with Grand Printemps and one of Scarlet’s attacks.

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A bunch of the thorns around them dissolve to reveal the castle of flames that Twilight originally found the Scarlet Perfume in. Scarlet starts to play the violin in front of the castle and Kanata joins her. Scarlet says the next time they play this melody it will be when the Hope Kingdom revives. She will bring back everyone’s dreams. Scarlet’s new dream makes her key react.

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They use her key with the Precure Palace and new life is breathed into the castle. All the thorns in the vicinity are exterminated and a red rainbow comes forth from the castle, one of the four rainbows of the Hope Kingdom has returned. A shield also pops up around the castle so Dysdark can’t do anything to it. The Hope Kingdom’s revival has begun, 3 castles to go. The castles are regained at a regular interval but it’s still essentially a random development and none of the girls are actively working towards it. And the villains don’t do anything.

Everyone then uses the doorway in the castle to return to Noble Academy.

Episode 41 is about Yui so I pretty much instantly don’t care about it. The local art museum is holding a contest and Yui decides to enter it. But she starts wondering if she can really do it or win. The other girls undergo some random princess lessons in the meantime. Shamour also mentions how Kanata can travel between worlds with the Royal Key. Haruka is very supportive of Yui’s dream.

I can’t say much of interest happens this episode. Yui gets discouraged and says she wont do the contest. Meanwhile at the legion of doom Dyspear tells Close they need to get to work and Close says they can’t let the Precure do as they please… and then they continue to do nothing. And then some stuff happens and Yui decides to enter the contest again.

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Stop and Freeze then show up and turn Yui into a Zetsuborg. How many times is this now? She actually resists their power for a good while but eventually is overcome. The girls then come and fight it. Flora sees that Yui is the victim again. Must be getting real tired of this shit. But Yui inside the cage of despair is actually able to overcome the power of despair when she hears Flora’s voice and sees the Precure fighting for her. She weakens the Zetsuborg because of this and the girls destroy it.

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Yui decides that what she wants to draw is the Precure protecting everyone’s dreams.

Next up we get two episodes that bring Kirara’s character arc to a close. Kirara is fun but her character arc hasn’t been very pronounced. We know what she wants and it never changes but not much has been done with it, essentially nothing really important with it has happened since the episode we met her mom. She’s sort of been in the background despite being the most fun character of the main girls.

Either way the episode starts with the news that Kirara is going to be part of a very prominent fashion show that takes place in New York. Doing this will give her worldwide fame and her dream will practically be achieved. Kanata meanwhile sees that the Star Castle seems close to reviving like the Flame Castle did.

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Kirara gets introduced to a cute new assistant who helps her out. Kirara’s gotten quite busy lately, Minami notices how hard she’s working towards her dream and she seems lost in thought over something. Kirara learns her assistant wanted to become a model after seeing a magazine, she wasn’t good at sports or anything but she got inspired after seeing a model on the cover.

Close sends Stop and Freeze to deal with the Precure. Casually insulting Shut while he does so just because. Kirara is sort of nervous about the show and leaving but she says she’ll shine even brighter. It’s time for her to fly to New York. Stop and Freeze show up and turn Rin-Rin into a Zetsuborg. Seeing her dream Kirara learns that she was the model that inspired Rin-Rin.

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The other girls say they’ll take care of things, Kirara should go and get on the plane. It’s her dream.

Kirara initially goes to achieve her dream but thinking about Rin-Rin gets her to turn back. She needs to protect the dreams of others. It’s the duty of a Princess Precure, especially when she was the one who gave birth to that dream.

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She puts her Galaxy Key in the Precure Palace to make a stronger attack. It’s the same thing Scarlet did in episode 40. And after that the girls finish off the Zetsuborg with Grand Printemps. But Kirara now has to deal with the fallout from missing her flight and the show. It will really hurt her work for now but she says she doesn’t regret protecting Rin-Rin’s dream.

Episode 43.

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Kirara suspended her modeling career, really surprising Haruka and the others. That French designer returns, his name has changed several times in the subs so fuck it, he wants to help Kirara out but she says she isn’t going to be working now.

Kirara tells Towa she’s doing this because she can’t give everything to her career while also being a Precure and she refuses to do anything half-way. She’s focusing more on being a Precure now. Kanata is also still in the Hope Kingdom looking at the Star Castle, he suspects all the castles are being affected by the Precure.

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Haruharu has everyone put on a dream themed fashion show at Noble Academy and she invites Kirara to it. Kirara watches it, Rin-Rin is in it too and she reminds Kirara of herself. Haruharu tells Kirara how amazing she was the first time she saw her on the runway. She and everyone else wants to help Kirara achieve her dream so please keep chasing it.

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Kirara walks down the runway too. She wants to be the number one model in the world and she’s decided to go for her dream again. She impresses everyone in the audience, including the designer who was watching the whole thing. After the show finishes he talks to Kirara about something.

The Star Castle in the Hope Kingdom begins to revive.

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Dyspear can sense this and she creates another Lock from herself that becomes a big lightning dragon Zetsuborg. Reminiscent of the Hoshiina’s that Anacondy would make. Dyspear doesn’t want the castle to revive so the Zetsuborg goes to Earth to defeat the Precure. The girls fight it and it’s a pretty cool fight. After defeating it the Royal Key acts up again and Kirara uses it to transport them all to the Hope Kingdom just like Towa did.

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Kirara revives the castle and another one of the 4 rainbows is back. Kirara tells them that she’s been invited by the designer to go to Paris at the end of the school year. She’s already decided to go. Haruharu is happy for her, she says Kirara will just have to become a Grand Princess and save the Hope Kingdom before then. When was the last time the Grand Princess was mentioned anyways? Well anyways that’s the finish to Kirara’s arc. It really didn’t need to be two episodes, neither does Minami’s right after this for that matter, those episodes could’ve been better spent on the finale or setting it up or what happens to Haruka. But they’re not. Same problem as Heartcatch wasting episodes in the last quarter.

Episode 44. Now it’s Minami’s turn. Exact same thing as with Kirara. These episodes are somewhat equivalent to what GoGo and Smile did at the end of their seasons.

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Minami dreams of swimming in the sea with Tina and all the other sea creatures. But then her parents ship floats by overheard and all the fish swim on, leaving her.

For school everyone is setting up for the Christmas party. Minami lately has been reading books on being a marine veterinarian written by Asuka. Minami pretends like there’s nothing eating at her but she forgets to turn in her career survey. One of her teachers tells her that her dream changed as she grew up and Minami should really take the time figuring out what she wants to do.

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Kirara can tell something is up with Minami and has her sit down for some tea with her. She wants Minami to open up about everything. Kirara wants to be able to help her friends like they just helped her. Minami tells Kirara about her dream, Minami says she wants to go with Tina into the sea and discover more about it but at the same time it’s clear that something is anchoring her and tying her down. Minami isn’t sure what to do. Kirara can tell that she really wants to go with the sea, she tells Minami that she hopes she can find the answer.

Meanwhile Shut decides her needs to get results or he’s in trouble so he comes to attack Earth. Towa and Haruka also realize Minami is feeling down about something. Eventually all 4 of them end up together fighting Shut’s Zetsuborg. But Mermaid is feeling weaker than normal, her inner turmoil over her dream is causing her power to weaken.

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Twinkle tells Mermaid that everyone feels these things. Flora also comes up and says that if she was worried about something she should’ve talked to them about it. Mermaid says she doesn’t know what path to take and Flora tells her not to hold back her passion for her new dream. New dreams can be born as well.

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In the end they tell Mermaid that what’s important is what she wants to do. Mermaid accepts this as well. She gets her power back and starts beating on the Zetsuborg. She acknowledges what she really wants to do now, her new dream. Like Scarlet and Twinkle before her she puts her Legendary Key into the Palace and gets a powered up attack, Coral Maelstrom. The girls then finish the Zetsuborg off.

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Afterwards Minami shares her dream of wanting to become a marine veterinarian with everyone. She says she’s been following Asuka’s blog too. The Sea Castle starts to awaken now. Uhh, why didn’t it revive fully this episode? There’s honestly no reason why it didn’t.

That being said I like Minami’s character arc, it’s well done and relateable. Lots of people grow up and find new dreams or goals in their lives. It’s just a shame that Minami is such a boring character. Compared to past girls who occupied the same role as her, like Karen, Reika, and Rikka, Minami is very plain in comparison and doesn’t bring anything new to the table. Her character arc is quite similar to theirs as well.

Episode 45. This episode is just unnecessary. THESE DIDN’T NEED TO BE TWO EPISODE STORIES.

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We see in a flashback that even as a child Minami was enraptured by the sea. Asuka is back in Japan too, although we barely see her at all, Minami is worried about telling her parents what she wants to do now. Minami actually had this dream and love of the sea deep down in her ever since she was a child.

Shut the idiot actually tries to give make-up tips to Dyspear. As expected she calls him an idiotic failure. He asks for one final chance to defeat the Precure so she gives him one of the locks she makes from herself. Shut is the best.

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Christmas party goes on at school. The girls put on a very cute song performance. Naturally Kirara’s santa outfit exposes the most skin.

Shut actually makes a Zetsuborg out of the Sea Castle and the thorns around for it. For some reason it comes out as a giant turtle. He then goes to Earth with it to fight Mermaid.

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Mermaid fights him alone for a bit. For some reason the water that the turtle Zetsuborg can summon drags them back into the Hope Kingdom to the castle. Whatever. The other girls follow from Earth using the Royal Key and Kanata shows up too so everyone fights the Zetsuborg together.

Mermaid overcomes the Zetsuborg, not giving in to despair. The girls finish it off together with Grand Printemps. Shut is very worried now.

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Mermaid can now open and revive the Sea Castle, only one castle and rainbow to go.

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Minami then later tells her parents about what she really wants to do now. Her parents congratulate her on her dream. They’re fine with it.

This two-parter was mostly fine aside from not needing to be spread out over two episodes. There also wasn’t really any point to Asuka’s brief appearance.

Next episode gets us to the interlude before the finale really starts.

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End of year cleaning going at the dorms. Winter break is soon. Shut though is wandering around feeling despondent. He has no place to return to after failing last episode and he’s just starting to lose it.

The girls all play in the snow outside the school, Towa starts to build the Hope Kingdom castle and soon everyone joins in, even other classmates. They make it a real masterpiece. Shut ends up running into Towa and seeing the castle he thinks they’re all insulting him. He wants revenge on everyone who’s shamed him. Towa transforms to fight him and Puff and Aroma sense the fight so the other girls come running and join in too. After hearing their motto of “Strong, Kind, and Beautiful” Shut does not agree with the beautiful part. He says he’s the only beautiful one and he attacks them in a rage. He’s able to power up by using his own despair.

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Scarlet fights him. Shut says Twilight was the start of all his problems, meeting her is what caused him to fall so far. To be beautiful again he must defeat her. But the girls show Shut that he’s not beautiful at all like this. And even more so because he keeps blaming others for his problems.

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Having the girls look down on him now after Dyspear has given up on him pushes Shut over the limit and he transforms into his true/ultimate form. Just a big cat really. Unlike Close or Lock though Shut’s completely mindless like this, he just goes on a rampage. Flora says they should save him and the other girls agree. They fight to calm him down and revert him to his human form with Grand Printemps. There really wasn’t much of a fight at all.

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Scarlet comes up to him and says that after receiving so many warm and precious things she’s changed from Twilight. She thinks being strong and kind to protect those precious things is what true beauty is. She offers for Shut to come along and change with her. But Shut bats her hand away. He isn’t fighting anymore though, he leaves peacefully.

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Miss Shamour and Kuroro come to give him a scarf to keep warm in the winter. He takes it without a word, still not joining up or befriending them or anything. He acknowledges Towa’s words in his mind and her belief of what true beauty is, but still chooses his own path for now.

At the end of the episode we see everyone having a nice winter break with their families and in the Hope Kingdom the final castle begins to awaken.

Which brings us to episode 47, the beginning of the end. And the beginning of a pretty boring and disappointing finale.

So it starts with Haruharu finally perfecting the art of making tea and passing her princess lesson. Hooray! One step closer to being her ideal princess. In the Hope Kingdom Dyspear seems completely unconcerned with there only being one castle left to revive. What is she planning? Just then the Royal Key glows and Kanata contacts the girls, telling them that something weird is happening at the Flower Castle. They all travel to it.

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Suddenly Haruka sees a bird flying around that she thinks is from the Flower Princess story. She goes running after it, straight into the castle, and finds herself in a whole new world. Haruka has become the flower princess. Even the prince is there for her. Haruka really enjoys living like a princess… but something is off.

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The prince wont let her pour her own tea. He says princesses don’t do something like that. And lessons? Of course princesses don’t need to take those either. And Haruharu, she forgets what she was even taking lessons for too.

Outside the castle the others try to get in but Stop and Freeze appear with another one of those Zetsuborg’s made directly from Dyspear. She speaks to them through it, telling them that Flora is in her ideal dream world and she’ll never come out. She’s far too happy to leave. Anyone ever seen that episode of Justice League? Well whatever, it’s sort of like Haruka is trapped in a personalized Neglect Ball. The other girls transform and fight the Zetsuborg.

But still, Haruka keeps realizing things are wrong. Seeds shoot from her hands and instantly bloom into beautiful flowers.

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Haruka says flowers are beautiful because of how hard they work to survive and bloom under their own power. These aren’t real flowers. Upon her thinking that the whole world starts to break up. The little bird flies towards her and says that this is her dream isn’t it? To be a princess? But Haruka says that a dream fulfilled without any work put towards it isn’t a dream at all. The whole dream world shatters now and the little bird is revealed to be Close, who now fights with her. Haruka transforms and they leave the castle, joining the others.

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Flora says she can’t become a true princess in that dream world. Close asks her what the hell a true princess is anyways? She collected all the keys but no one became a Grand Princess, what more do they need to do? Will it ever happen? Close says she’ll never make it, her dream goes nowhere, it never ends.

This… doesn’t bother Flora.

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She accepts that her dream is like that. But it will keep on living forever like the flowers blooming across the world, all the flowers struggling to survive. No matter what. Strong, kind, and beautiful, this is the kind of princess she wants to become.

Flora then uses a powered up attack with the Legendary Key and Palace just like the others before it. It weakens the Zetsuborg and the girls destroy it with Grand Printemps. Close, Stop, and Freeze retreat and Flora then opens up and revives the Flower Castle.

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The Hope Kingdom is back to normal and Dyspear’s thorn castle is destroyed by the power of the rainbows and castles.

Solve problems with your own power, that’s what the Precure have learned after this. Shamour congratulates them on learning this, saying she has nothing more to teach them. All that’s left to do now is open up the door of despair that’s still hanging in the sky. But the girls haven’t become Grand Princesses yet and that’s the only way to open it. What do they do now?

Suddenly Dyspear’s voice booms out.

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She says she’ll allow the girls to have Hope Kingdom but despair never ends. And then she shows up at Noble Academy.

So sort of like with Yes5 the finale doesn’t start until the very end of this episode and it’s a short finale overall. Dyspear just sat around while the girls reclaimed the castles and you keep waiting for her to do something but she never did. And she continues to not do anything in the next couple episodes. GoPrincess does sort of the same annoying thing as with Heartcatch where the villain is just able to void everything the girls did the whole show. But it’s even worse here, at least Dune got his true power back before he was able to affect the Heart Tree and even then the seeds the girls had gathered prevented its total death. In GoPrincess Dyspear loses everything but then pulls an “I win” card out of her ass. It doesn’t make any sense. Why didn’t she do this earlier? Why did she wait for them to get every castle back? If the Hope Kingdom and everything in it was useless to her how come she didn’t attack Earth earlier? WHY DIDN’T SHE DO ANYTHING? She was not consolidating any power, there was no plan like there was previously with the seeds of despair, there was absolutely no set up to this. This is why the seeds of despair needed to still be around for the finale and not taken care of back in episode 39. That would’ve actually been foreshadowing and development for this plot and it would’ve also set a precedent for Dyspear actually being strong on Earth and able to take it over if those seeds of despair were growing the whole time. And it could’ve been used to explain why she didn’t care about Hope Kingdom and why she needed to wait for the seeds to fully grow. BUT FUCK HAVING A GOOD FINALE THAT MAKES SENSE.

And how come Haruka didn’t get two episodes? Why couldn’t more time have been spent in her dream world? Why didn’t she really even have anything to struggle with? I suppose one could say that Haruka’s difficult time was episodes 38 and 39.

GoPrincess is such a jack-of-all-trades season. Fresh was like that too but better. Aside from visuals and music GoPri doesn’t excel at anything. Other seasons have better action, better Cures, better villains, a better story, better done themes, etc. Haruka is a good character but not really remarkable. She’s not anymore awesome (Mana) or deep (Tsubomi) or different (Nagisa) or fun (Love) than other pinks can be. Whenever I look at Towa all I see are Setsuna, Ellen and Regina. Who’s Towa? Puff and Aroma were good fairies but not great or important like Tarte, Candy, etc.

Another thing that annoys me about it is that like Happiness Charge the show never shuts up. In HapCha it was “Love and happiness are illusions” that would get repeated over and over and over. In GoPri people keep going on about dreams and despair. Yes those are the themes but you don’t need to yak and yak and yak about them. Doki and Smile weren’t like this so why did HapCha and GoPri have to be?

The villains I will now give my final opinion on. Stop and Freeze are furniture. Like if Trio the Minor never got any development. Close is a boring edgelord who can’t hold a candle to other villains I mentioned earlier. Dyspear is boring and derivative. She brings nothing new to the table, the fights against her are shit and she hardly does anything. Due to her lack of development she’s not even an especially good foil to Haruka either. Lock is a mixed bag. He barely did anything but when he did take center stage he was great. The fight against him in episode 30 was my favorite of the show and his little mini-arc was excellent. Shut is by far the best villain of the season. He’s the funniest, most developed of them all. He and his character arc are the best things about GoPrincess.

Despite the victim of the week format and the more insular school setting it didn’t really feel like GoPrincess did any more with its side-cast than Heartcatch did, at least until the finale. Zetsuborg’s are basically exactly the same and made exactly the same way as Terribad’s but they have better designs.

This finale is sadly not awesome or epic at all aside from a couple cool images.  It follows the trend I found where one season will have an epic finale and the next one wont. Thanks HapCha I guess?

GoPrincess is the only season where I can literally find no reason to watch it. It also has the most obnoxious and defensive fanbase of any Precure season.

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Dyspear and the forest of despair take root on Earth right at Noble Academy. Which is stupid. She was only able to get strong enough and take over Hope Kingdom after the people lost their light in Towa. But for the past year the Precure have been protecting dreams and beating despair here. So whatever. The girls also come back from the Hope Kingdom. All of the students and faculty see this happening too.

Dyspear tells them all that she will turn peoples dreams into despair and have it become her own power. The girls are surrounded by their fellow classmates but they transform in front of them all because they have to. The fight begins.

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Everyone else is shocked to see this. Kanata is there too, Puff and Aroma as well. Yui tells everyone how Haruka and the others have been protecting their dreams all this time.

Dyspear tells Close to stall for time while she gathers power. Currently she’s unable to move. She gives him Lock, who right now is just a tattered sweater, to use. Stop and Freeze also attack the girls but Kanata and Shamour fight to keep them occupied. It’s really sad how bad the fighting is in episodes 48 and 49. Really lackluster and disappointing for GoPrincess. And when it comes to Dyspear the whole finale feels like a tease because for a while she’s still just sitting around doing nothing, you just wait and wait for something to happen.

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Lock has been turned into a servant of Dyspear. As a giant sweater he fights the girls to protect Dyspear, he’s completely changed. Shut is also there witnessing everything. Animation is below average from what you would expect of GoPrincess’s finale too.

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Close traps everyone around in cages of despair and uses the despair energy to power up Lock. With his new power Lock destroys the Princess Rods and Scarlet’s violin. But as they’re destroyed the tiny fragments of them travel into the hearts of Yui and everyone else at Noble Academy.

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Because of the Princess Rod fragment Yui sees Flora and the others fighting on and not giving up even after losing their items. She’s able to break herself out of the cage of despair with her own power.

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Yui tries to wake everyone else up and get them out of the cages. Puff, Aroma, and Kuroro help. They’re able to succeed in reaching the people in the cages and free them, more accurately they’re able to free themselves. They’re the only ones who can make their dreams come true and they need to fight for it themselves.

This weakens Lock and reassures the Precure.

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Kuroro sees Lock and feels sorry for him, he wants Lock to be saved too. Shut also comes in and punches Close in the face (Shut continuing to be the best). Shut yells at Lock, telling him how pathetic he’s become, he’s not the haughty arrogant Lock he knew. Shut says the both of them need to free themselves from Dyspear’s grasp and he tells the Precure to purify Lock, which they do with Grand Printemps.

Lock becomes just a tattered old sweater again. He’s still “alive” though.

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Close then blasts away Shut and at the end of the episode Dyspear has finally had enough time to act herself. She did literally nothing. Why did she need more time after sitting around in the Hope Kingdom? Well anyways the girls prepare to fight her.

At the start of episode 49 Dyspear tells Close how Shut and Lock were fools but she was right to trust in and revive him. Uhhh, what? You hated this failure. And Shut was completely loyal until you started mistreating him. This is the non-reason Dyspear gives for Close’s return.

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Dyspear takes Close back into her body (they were all born from her) and Stop and Freeze also revert to their original forms of giant thorns. Dyspear and the thorns grow gigantic, the thorns now cover much more area, not just Noble Academy. Where does this gigantic form and power even come from? Dysdark wasn’t doing anything since episode 39.

The Precure do battle with her. The fight is terrible. Dyspear doesn’t even move at all. It’s all thorns and energy blasts. The girls use their powered up individual attacks but she’s able to overcome them with the extra power she gained from Close. The thorns and forest of despair begin to cover the whole world.

And now we go straight to Stupidville. And Staleville.

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Dyspear says dreams always give birth to darkness, lost hope, regret, all of that allowed Dyspear to take over the Earth. The collective despair of everyone in the Hope Kingdom over time first gave birth to the forest of despair and eventually Dyspear herself. She is despair.

WHERE HAVE I HEARD THIS BEFORE?

And if that’s how she took over Earth there was LITERALLY NO REASON SHE COULDN’T HAVE DONE SO SOONER. She did nothing else to prepare. What was the point of staying in the Hope Kingdom at all? Why did she at first care and then not care about the castles and the girls reclaiming the Hope Kingdom? Fuck it.

Dyspear is a copy of Noise. Lots of villains have similarities with each other but Dyspear is the first to have no differences. Everything about her (and Close too soon) in the finale is just ripped from Noise, Proto-Jikochu, Dune, and Red. This is why I was so damn tired of despair as a theme when GoPrincess started.

Also it seems like we kind of already knew that Dyspear was despair.

Shamour says the Precure have to become Grand Princesses but if it hasn’t happened yet they don’t know what to do. Flora says they’ll protect everyone’s dreams and they fight on. Their classmates watch on amazed at what they’re doing but still losing hope as the girls seem to be losing. Yui gets them all to believe in the Precure. The girls try Grand Printemps on Dyspear but it doesn’t work.

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Dyspear knocks them out of their transformations, she then brings forth the door of despair and opens it, sucking in everyone on Earth who’s trapped in a cage of despair just like she did to the citizens of Hope Kingdom. Which means everyone except for the people at Noble Academy. The girls cry upon seeing their failure.

Puff and Aroma still fight to try and get the girls to snap out of their depression. Their classmates also try to cheer them up, saying how amazing they are and thanking them for everything. Kuroro also looks to help.

Yui leads everyone in telling Dyspear they will never give up.

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Light erupts from her and everyone elses hearts. Keys come from them. Kanata thinks the keys are from the Princess Rods that earlier entered their hearts, they came out as crystallized parts of their dreams. As Yui knows dreams are the power of the Precure and everyone has to give their power to them. So these are basically Miracle Lights. Used the same way as everyone holds them up and transfers their feelings to the girls.

Haruka, Minami, Kirara and Towa stand back up. They’re ready to take the power of everyone’s dreams and defeat despair.

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The opening theme song plays and the perfumes rise up and fly towards Dyspear creating a doorway and path for each girl to take. Well this is weird. The girls run toward and up the light with their keys, ready to open the doors. Kanata and Shamour help to protect them from Dyspear while they do this and even Shut and Kuroro wearing Lock come to help too. The girls transform piece by piece while they run up the light… what is this Aikatsu! now or something?

They make it to the doors and go on through, because of all the dreams they’ve protected they now become Grand Princesses.

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Interesting looking super forms. Happy that all 4 of them got it.

Dyspear fires a massive energy blast at them but the girls counter it with their own power.

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With their feelings and strength and combined hearts they fuse all the Dress-Up Keys into one golden key (which you actually see in the opening every episode)

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Using their final attack Precure Grand Liberation the girls turn the golden key into a gigantic key of energy and fire it right through Dyspear’s keyhole. Destroying her. But right before she dies Dyspear tries to tell them not to forget that despair is… what?

One last episode to go. I kept waiting for a real fight with Dyspear but it never happened. Almost as disappointing as the fight with Pierrot which could’ve and should’ve been so much better.

Episode 50. The final episode. Everyone cheers for the Grand Princesses. But it’s not over yet.

Close is still alive somehow, new form and all. He says Dysdark will keep coming back again and again, Dyspear gave him her “everything” right before she died so he could finish things. Despair is eternal.

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So even though Close by all logic shouldn’t remotely be a threat to them he’s still regarded with fear. Close is able to control the thorns of despair just like Dyspear and he sets them back to rampaging across Noble Academy. He also absorbs the Stop and Freeze thorns. Close attacks the Precure, saying it’s their fate to fight. Flora seems concerned by this and so she tells the others she’ll face Close alone, she must speak with him. After Mermaid convinces Twinkle and Scarlet they all agree to Flora’s desire, they believe in her. Flora changes to a battle form and Close encloses the two of them in a massive ball of thorns so they can fight.

So even though they all get the super form it still ends up being a one on one fight between the Pink and the final villain? I hate this.

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Anyways this episode and the fight between Flora and Close is where all the animation budget for the finale went. It looks great. Good music too. The fight itself honestly isn’t that good though and it’s pretty short. Completely lacking in emotion too, similar to the dead feeling from Cure Heart vs. Proto-Jikochu. It feels like the show is already over.

And really it’s just sort of dumb. Close tries to get Flora to despair and give up again. Again. Like fuck Close you have been awful at this. You’ve never gotten her to despair and the one time she really did she was able to pick herself back up all on her own. But Close is just doing the same damn thing. I guess maybe he’s thinking she’ll find it more hopeless after seeing him come back perfectly fine and the whole despair is eternal thing blah blah.

Close beats Flora around, saying as long as dreams exist despair will not disappear. Flora thinks about what despair is. She thinks about her dream and her life up to this point.

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Flora realizes and agrees that despair will never disappear. It’s all around you, it’s been all around her and she won’t forget the despair she’s felt in her life. Happy things and sad things come in cycles but it’s because of that that she’s here now.

Close flips out and starts screaming a whole bunch. That’s Close for you.

Dreams and despair will both always be around her. Happy and sad things come together to make dreams. Flora hits Close, showering the sphere of thorns with flower petals.

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He says he’ll keep rising and Flora says that sometimes they may lose to him but they’ll keep fighting too. They (not just the Precure but the people and Precure of the future) will always look towards the future because they have dreams. As long as despair exists their dreams will shine bright as well. Close gives up on fighting her, seeing no point in it anymore. He’ll disappear until next time but for now it’s over.

Well that was sudden, pointless, and stupid. GOODBYE FOREVER CLOSE.

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Flora can now open the door of despair and free everyone. Things finally go completely back to normal.

Now we get to the epilogue. The only good part of the finale.

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Towa and Kanata are reunited with their parents. It’s a sweet scene. The castle also goes back to normal. The Dress-Up Keys decombine and go back to normal, and also go into a dormant state. They and the Perfumes will both return to the Hope Kingdom. Which means that the girls will not be able to travel to the Hope Kingdom anymore, the doorway between worlds will close as the job of the Precure is done. Everyone has to say goodbye now.

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The girls say goodbye to Towa, Puff, and Aroma. Towa promises to bring hope and dreams to the people of the Hope Kingdom. She starts to cry, so do the others, it’s a tearful farewell.  Haruharu says they’ll see each other again, their hearts are still connected no matter what. After that we see a montage of all the characters throughout the show going after their dreams.

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Shut and Lock are together. Lock has been reduced to a scarf. Yui is drawing her Precure picture book, Minami meets with Asuka, Kirara continues modeling.

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In the Hope Kingdom Miss Shamour teaches Kuroro how to become a Royal Teacher. Puff has become a maid and Aroma is Kanata’s butler. Kanata inspects the forest of despair, which is still there in the Hope Kingdom, it’s dormant and practically serene for now. Towa says that future Princesses will fight the despair when the time arrives if necessary. The two of them play the violin together.

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In a flashback Haruharu reflects on how far she’s come. Kanata says it was because of her hard work. Haruka says she’ll continue to move forward and become her own princess. Sadly it’s time to say goodbye, but they both believe they’ll see each other again. When Kanata leaves Haruka cries, farewell first love.

After the credits and many years later a young girl is reading the book Yui wrote about the Precure. She’s sad that at the end it seems like they never got to see each other again. But as she goes home with her mom an older Haruka is there to narrate for us:

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Just aim for your dreams and run. A key will be born in your heart (we see brief images of Towa in the Hope Kingdom, Minami by the sea and Kirara in Paris, all 4 of the girls have some crystal key with them, what does it mean?) and with that key you can surely…

And that’s the end of GoPrincess Precure.

All in all it was a fine season, could’ve been better could’ve been worse. On a technical level it’s one of the better ones. It’s well made enough but still can’t shake that soullessness it has. The finale is unfortunately pretty bad, I think I might put it in the bottom 3 finales of the franchise. I think I enjoyed GoPri less than Happiness Charge even though it’s a better show.

Despite GoPrincess having mostly good animation and some extremely well animated fights the action in it wasn’t actually that great. The first two episodes had magnificent fights with movie level animation and there were some other good fights in the first half but nothing as spectacular as that again. From Close’s first death and on the first “boss fight” that was actually good was the one against Lock. And after that the normal episode fighting was just at an okay level for pretty much the rest of the season. The final fight against Close looked amazing, just like the fights against Twilight, but good animation can’t make up for everything. In the end I would only say the fighting in GoPrincess is a bit above average for Precure and despite looking much better I wouldn’t say it was on a higher level than Happiness Charge.

Considering this was only the second 50 episode series in the franchise you think they could’ve spent their time better and not have the finale be short and disappointing like it was.

Well at least with GoPri being finished that’s the end of the Dark Age of the franchise. GoPrincess I may have ended up caring about almost the least of any season.

Precure All Stars Spring Carnival

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So we now enter the musical age of All Stars. Spring Carnival is an odd movie, it has the most unusual format of any of the crossovers. It’s sort of a musical but not as much of one as the next All Stars movie. Spring Carnival only has three original songs and the rest are performances of opening/ending songs by the Precure teams.

Still, I love musicals so I really like this movie. I’ve always hoped for more musical stuff in a season of Precure too. In general this movie is just fun and cute and isn’t nearly as serious as any of the previous All Stars movies.

The movie starts with the GoPri girls getting ready to go shopping together. Haruka (who I will forever on be referring to as Haruharu) is worried about an upcoming singing exam at school. She likes to sing but is nervous to do it in front of other people. An invitation for them then flies out of the sky. We cut to the Happiness Charge girls who have received a similar invitation, it’s from the kingdom Harmonia, inviting them to the Harmonia Spring Carnival. We see that all of the Precure teams have gotten invitations and the invitations magically transform into either a carriage or some other thing (like a flying train) to transport the girls to Harmonia.

But meanwhile in Harmonia some evil thief has “stolen” the kingdom and taken it over with his minions. The King says that the carnival can’t be interrupted because they need to appease the Guardian Diety of the kingdom. The thief says he plans to have the festival go on as planned but when he learns that the King has invited the Precure to the festival he’s quite worried. But, it seems he has a plan to deal with them…

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On the way to Harmonia the GoPri girls meet the HapCha team and they see all the other Precure coming too. Our new heroines are surprised to meet a real princess in Hime.

The thief, Odoren, and his lackey Utaen then come to the two teams. Odoren says he’s the minister of Harmonia. He asks if all the Precure would be willing to sing and dance for the carnival, as a thank you to all the fairies.

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We then get our first of 3 original songs in the movie. It’s a cute little number giving thanks to all of the fairies. The Precure don’t sing it or anything, it just happens. During the song we also seem some movie characters and fairies, so that’s a nice touch. It’s a nice song but I really prefer the other two original songs in the movie, they’re better.

Anyways the HapCha girls agree to sing and dance after this. Haruharu is worried but the other girls and the two GoPri fairies convince her to do it and give it her all.

At the carnival Odoren and Utaen act as the hosts and they introduce all the Precure teams in order. Everyone is gonna sing and dance. This movie feels like a big meta treat for all the fans, like we’re in the audience at the carnival too. Also as I should note not every Cure has a speaking role, pretty much just one or two from each team aside from HapCha and GoPri. Both Tsubomi and Erika get to speak of course cause of that Heartcatch privilege.

Haruharu gets worried again after seeing all the fairies in the audience.

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Fresh Precure are the first team to perform. Singing and dancing to their first ending song. It could sort of be seen as an epilogue to Fresh. Really the CGI dancing isn’t the appeal when it comes to these performances, we get to see the girls going on about their lives since the season ended. Some of these performances could sort of be like epilogues for their season, as well as what they talk about after. Odoren and Utaen talk to Love who mentions that Setsuna has been busy fixing Labyrinth so they don’t often all get together like this, these segments are my favorite part of the movie.

Next up the Smile girls perform to their first ending song, during their song we see them celebrating Candy’s birthday.

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Right after that the GoGo girls perform to their opening theme song. Romance is still in the air for this team and their fairies. Except Rin.

After that the Heartcatch team dances to their opening song and then the Max Heart team also performs with their opening song. Afterwards it’s nice to see Nagisa complain about Mepple and get into a fight with him again, been a long time since.

After those songs there’s a little break in-between Precure performances, at this time Odoren has some of the fairies go get refreshments from the girls, separating them, while at the same time Utaen swipes some of the transformation items. And then we get to the villain song, my favorite of the three new ones in the movie.

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It’s just a very catchy song. It explains how Odoren planned to steal all the fairies and transformation items from the girls so they couldn’t transform and beat him up. Utaen even calls him out on him doing this just cause he’s weak. But anyways it worked. As the performances continue the girls wonder where the fairies are but Odoren and Utaen convince them to just enjoy the show.

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So next up is the Doki Doki team performing their first ending song. Right after them is the Splash Star team performing to their opening theme song. And I love the Splash Star song because it actually acknowledges the existence of Michiru and Kaoru and their Bright and Windy forms. Thank you Toei. However I feel it’s kind of a wasted opportunity that they didn’t do Ganbalance de Dance.

Also R.I.P. Miyu Matsuki, voice of Choppy.

After those performances we also get to see Mana try to sing again on her own. Pretty funny.

Haruharu is still really worried about performing. The HapCha girls tell her to believe in the power of song and dance. And again at this point Odoren and Utaen sneakily steal more fairies and transformation items. Next the Suite Precure team perform to their first ending song, I think this is my favorite performance in the movie. And immediately after them the HapCha team performs to their second ending song.

But after this Utaen accidentally drops all the transformation items in front of the Precure teams, besides the GoPri girls who are preparing for their performance, so the jig is up. Odoren and Utaen tell them that they’re actually thieves and Harmonia is now under their control. And Odoren grabs the GoPrincess girls’ Perfumes so they can’t transform either.

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So using all their items he attempts to transform into Cure Thief… obviously it does not work.

He then locks away the fairies and items in a big chest and he sends all the girls but the GoPrincess team underground. But Haruharu then decides to sing and dance, after remembering what the HapCha girls told her about their power. It’s the third original song and it’s a rather nice one. It brings out the power of the girls and opens the chest for them, retrieving the Perfumes and other things, allowing everyone to transform.

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So now everyone is singing and dancing together. Focusing mostly on the GoPrincess and Happiness Charge girls.

After the song Odoren is really scared now. He calls in his minions and we get a fight. Some of the Precure go out looking for the real rulers of Harmonia too. There’s some nice action and funny stuff here, every team gets to do something at least too. Eventually the King and the other nobles are found, the King tells the Precure they’re in danger if the carnival has stopped cause the guardian deity will get angry that there’s no more singing and dancing. He really loves singing and dancing.

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And then the guardian deity appears, a gigantic dragon.

The Precure now have to fight him… err, except it’s really just them using an attack on him to calm him down. The GoPri girls ask for everyone to give them their strength.

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After the dragon is calmed by Precure Rainbow Tornado he restores everything that’s been damaged in Harmonia. To cap off the Spring Carnival the GoPrincess girls then perform to their first ending song. During the song we see that Odoren and Utaen have become janitors in Harmonia. There was no actual fight against the two of them because they’re not fighters.

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The GoPri girls then return to their school, Haruharu ready for the singing exam.

So yeah, because of the weird format and style of this movie there isn’t really much to talk about. I feel like the “plot” is second fiddle to seeing everyone do their songs. Not like the next All Stars movie which is a true musical that weaves the songs and story together. In Spring Carnival you just have Odoren and Utaen’s song and then the song where the girls get their items and fairies back that actually work as real musical songs that have to do with the plot of the movie.

Still the movie is really fun and a nice treat to all the Precure fans.

 

 

 

 

Doki Doki Precure the Movie

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I actually like this movie for the most part. Mana is fine in it and even comes off as a real person, unlike in the main show. There’s a lot to like about what the movie does. It’s story is pretty much ripped from Fresh and Smile’s movies but Precure always does stuff like that so I can’t knock the Doki movie for doing it. It’s generally a good movie but not one of the best and it has one really dumb thing about it and another thing that’s kind of annoying but still the same thing every Precure movie does now so I again can’t really knock Doki for doing it. It’s an enjoyable movie though and I recommend it.

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First off it starts with another opening skit where the girls explain the Miracle Lights. And then when the movie proper begins Mana’s mom has found her old wedding dress that first belonged to her mother. Mana wants to wear it too when the time comes and her grandfather says her grandma would be happy if she wore it. The opening theme song then plays and we get a dream sequence where Mana is getting married but it’s attacked by the Selfish Trio, they don’t have a part in the actual movie so this is a nice little cameo. Mana then wakes up and tells the girls about her wedding dress at school.

She also shares with them a special charm her grandma showed her, that if you draw a heart in your palm it will make your dream come true. The girls then all go to Alice’s house and have a picnic. Oh wait Aguri isn’t there. Wonder where she is?

The three girls from Earth reminisce about old times, like when Mana took in a stray dog. She called him Mallow but unfortunately he died a few years ago. Mana doesn’t want everyone to get all depressed so she says they should talk about their future dreams and if they’ve thought about their own weddings. Alice says she’s had a bunch of arranged marriage meetings but she’s turned everyone down.

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Suddenly that night in town a mysterious man with a clarinet appears. When he starts playing the clarinet something horrifying happens, his hands and the clarinet suddenly become cgi for no discernible reason!

He says he’ll make the unfair humans remember all the things they’ve forgotten and thrown away. The feelings of resentment in these old things unite and they all begin to congregate together in the sky, creating a gigantic airship. The wedding dress tries to go too but Mana grabs it and says she still needs it so the power from the clarinet leaves it.

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The other girls and the townspeople watch the whale airship form. Then the clarinet begins to play again. The mysterious guy introduces himself as Marsh from the Land of Memories. He’s come to get Mana, as if he knows her.

Where’s Aguri anyways? She isn’t here either.

Mana doesn’t recognize this guy though. He seems dismayed that she’s forgotten him so he’s going to drag everyone into the Land of Memories where time is stopped and they merely relive their happy memories over and over. All the regular townspeople then get sucked in so the girls transform to fight Marsh.

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But he summons some servants to fight them. The servants regenerate when broken so the girls figure they need to destroy Marsh’s clarinet to stop them. They fire a Lovely Force Arrow but it has no effect on Marsh. He sends out some energy beams to incapacitate the girls and then sucks them into their old memories too.

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The fairies don’t get sucked in though, and then a new fairy we haven’t seen before appears.

Mana wakes up in her memories a few years younger and finds-

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Her grandmother and Mallow are both still alive. She remembers what happened with Marsh and that she’s a Precure and everything but she still can’t help but be happy at seeing them again. All of the other girls are happy in their memories too. The plot with Mana especially also reminds me a lot of the episode of Fresh where Love meets her grandfather again.

The fairy in the real world then tells the Precure fairies that the sorrow of disowned things gave power to these villains. They ask how she knows all this and she says that her name is Bebel and she and Marsh go way back. They all need to unite together now to save the girls (Read, Mana).

Mana finds that in her memory world Rikka and the others don’t exist, at Rikka’s house some strange foreigner lives there. His name is John Smith, the classic. Mana is upset at this but still enjoys the time she has with her grandma and Mallow.

Where’s Aguri?

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Marsh watches the girls in their memories, happy to see Mana just lackadaisically enjoying herself. He wants her to forget all her pain. The fairies then infiltrate the whale airship. But they get caught trying to find the memory films of the girls so they can free them. Marsh says the girls are happy living in their memories but Bebel says they have infinite potential and he can’t take away their futures. She distracts Marsh and the girls fairies jump into the memories to find and save them.

But one day in Mana’s memories…

Sharuru finds her and asks if she’s going to come back, Mana says she will but she has to say goodbye to her grandma and Mallow. But at the same time Mana’s grandmother slipped and injured herself and when Mana went running to see her at the hospital Mallow broke through his leash and ran after her.

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Which led to him being hit and killed by a car. As Mana remembers how all of this happened (and a cute insert song starts playing) Marsh speaks into her ear, telling her that this is what he was trying to prevent, telling her she needs to go back deeper into her memories to avoid this pain. And Mana does it, she gives in to the “happiness” the villain is offering and ignores Sharuru calling for her to go back to reality. All to avoid her pain.

Oh my god. Mana with flaws? It’s unheard of. I actually have sympathy for her, it’s a miracle.

But Bebel says Mana wont stop so easily, and she still has her friends there to help her. Marsh orders his minions to take out the other girls to make sure they can’t do anything.

Meanwhile the girls are enjoying themselves but… something’s missing. What could it be? Their fairies then get to them and Alice and Rikka find themselves in the same world, and they get their memories of being Cures back and everything, it seems they were made to forget that stuff. And so what could possibly be missing from this world of happy memories? Why wouldn’t they want to just stay in it?

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Well it’s Mana of course. Please kill me.

I mean yeah, this is Doki Doki Precure, I know how it is. But when Alice and Rikka say something like that it’s just so absurdly nauseating.

Anyways Davi also reached Makoto, who wanted to forget about the tragedy that befell the Trump Kingdom. Pretty understandable. And so Marsh’s minions arrive and the girls transform and fight them. Pretty good action in this part. Would’ve been cool if they used Rosetta Balloon in the movie but oh well.

AND THEN FINALLY!

Ai-chan and Ace show up to help Sword in her memory world. Um… how??? Where was Aguri anyways? There is literally no explanation for any of this. But at least the action and animation at this part of the movie are still good.

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Mana is still stuck in her “happy” memories, even though she’s feeling depressed now, she’s gone back to before Mallow died. She doesn’t want to return to the real world where Mallow and her grandma are dead, despite Sharuru trying to convince her.

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Her grandma then comes into her room, she’s actually noticed that something is wrong with Mana and that this “world” around her is fake. She tells Mana that her name is written with the character for love and that she needs to listen clearly now… and when Mana does she can hear the voices of the other girls calling out for her. But Mana doesn’t want to leave her grandma, however she says that they’re always together. Love that’s passed down won’t disappear, Mana needs to go back to the real world.

And so Mana finally gets the resolves to leave her memories. She transforms with Sharuru and all 5 of the girls break from the memory world and confront Marsh now. They tell him they had to leave even though it was happy, experiencing painful things make people stronger.

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Marsh transforms into a huge monster dog to fight and that’s when Mana finally realizes that he’s Mallow. Marshmallow. She asks why he’s become like this but he tells her to shut up and they battle. Again there’s some good animation here. Mana allows Marshmallow to bite her to calm him down, she wanted to accept his feelings and rage. And there’s real blood, for the first time in Precure a Cure bleeds. I understand the importance of doing this but I can’t help but feel that Doki is, well… trying too hard by doing this. Marshmallow does calm down but a strange voice then tells Marsh that Mana abandoned and forgot about him and went on to the future herself without him.

Mana says she never forgot, she got so many great memories from Mallow, she hugs and thanks him for everything and he turns back into his human form. He’s no longer a villain and he’s shocked at how he could’ve done the things he did.

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Then we see that the strange voice was coming from the clarinet. It gave Marsh powers so he could take revenge for all the forgotten things. But since Marsh has left him he decides that it’s no longer enough to just trap the girls in their memories, he’ll erase their futures too and the clarinet travels forward in time to do that, leaving the girls and Mallow behind.

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Aguri’s transformation runs out while this happens but she mentions that there is a way they can follow the clarinet. The miracle lights. Ai-chan then creates the miracle lights for everyone, Rikka comments on how convenient this is, and Aguri actually breaks the 4th wall, not just speaking to the camera but asking all the kids watching the movie to wave their lights and give the girls the power they need.

So it works and the girls all go to the future, Aguri’s transformation comes back too.

They arrive at Mana’s wedding in the future. we don’t see who she’s marrying though, but then time stops and the clarinet appears riding the huge whale airship and planning to destroy it all. And then we get a cgi fight much like the final fight in the Fresh movie or DX2 I suppose. Heart and everyone else travel inside the airship, with Mallow in his normal dog form to guide them to the clarinet with his nose. They find the clarinet but they can’t destroy it, Lovely Straight Flush isn’t powerful enough.

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Mallow sacrifices himself to protect Mana and then gives her his heart. It merges with her so she can transform into Cure Heart Engage Mode. She then blows away the clarinet and stops everything despite the clarinet saying that as long as things are forgotten it’s immortal.

As the main conflict of the movie ends we see in a flashback how Mana’s grandmother gave her her name. And all the normal people of Earth get back to the real world from their memories

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Bebel then goes back to the memories where she belongs, taking Mallow’s heart with her, and Mana realizes that somehow Bebel is her grandmother. She thanks Mallow and her grandmother for everything.

The End.

Yeah, so good movie all in all. Good story and good emotion pretty much the whole way through. But a couple negatives. The one big stupid thing about the movie is the absence of Aguri. Now there is no explanation in the movie for this but the out of meta reason for it is that Aguri has no old memories, so if she was included in this plot the creators would’ve just had to make up fake memories for her or show that she didn’t have any and that would ruin the reveal of Aguri’s true identity in the main series. So instead they just have Aguri absent until more than halfway through and then she just appears randomly in Makoto’s memories. And the one big annoying thing about this movie is Heart gets another super mode all for herself, yes every movie but Heartcatch’s since GoGo has given the pink their own movie exclusive super form but to then have Heart be the only one to get the super form in the finale of the show too just makes this so excessive. At least in Fresh and Suite and Smile the girls all got the same super forms in the finale.

And when you compare Engage Mode and Heart’s transformation into it and how she finishes off the clarinet it’s super disappointing compared to Ultra Cure Happy that we got last year in Smile’s movie. Massive step down.

Still, pretty good movie and it actually got me to care about a character I hate so good job on that. It is disappointing that Mallow isn’t actually mentioned at all in the main series though and Mana’s grandmother I believe is only mentioned the one time in the first episode. Kind of sad the same way with Dark Dream not being brought up outside the Yes5 movie.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Doki Doki Precure

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I hate this show.

Figured I should get that out of the way right from the beginning. It’s not just Doki that’s bad though it’s this whole third era of Precure that’s problematic, the true Dark Age of the franchise. Happiness Charge and Go Princess aren’t terrible, and Go Princess is easily the best of the three, but none of them are great. At least Happiness and Princess started out strong though, which is more than I can say for Doki. After Smile the composer changed again and we got a new production team, this did not go good places. Doki is basically the exact opposite of Smile in nearly every way, tons of focus on the plot, every character is really special and smart, art and animation is not very good, it feels like it’s intentionally trying to be as different from Smile as possible. Doki is such a haphazard and uneven show where Smile was very consistent too. Doki has a lot of slapstick and comedy in otherwise serious episodes while Smile always separated the two. Smile was like a celebration of all the Precure that came before it and its ideals whereas Doki is like a slap in the face to the spirit of Precure.

A lot of the problem with Doki comes from the man who was in charge. Ryota Yamaguchi. Yamaguchi was in charge of Sailor Stars, the final season of the original Sailor Moon anime. And boy does it show. Doki takes a ton of influence from Sailor Stars. Unfortunately while Sailor Stars had problems it also had a lot of good points, Doki however only has the negatives of Stars and none of its positives. One of the biggest problems you’ll see in Doki down the road is poor character focus, this happened in Stars too with the original Senshi not really getting to do much. However because there were 150 episodes prior to Stars the Senshi already had plenty of development, so while it was sad to see them so underutilized in the final season it’s not like anything was really lost for them. They already had plenty of time and focus in previous seasons. Doki does not have this luxury. Certain characters just horribly overshadow others, it’s not even like this is a sequel like GoGo either where you’d expect the new characters to get a lot of focus over the older ones. Poor Cure Sword.

Doki is just not what a season of Pretty Cure should be and there is no greater example of this than with the main character Mana, Cure Heart. Mana is everything wrong with Doki Doki Precure. A perfect Mary Sue and unrealistic role-model for kids. Mana hardly ever comes off as human or real, the movie is one of the only instances where she does. Mana is just… the worst. Mana does not grow or develop, Mana does not have flaws, everyone completely fawns over her throughout the entire show, the show bends over backwards to make things revolve around her even when they shouldn’t, everything not having to do with Mana is given less care than Hentai dub voice actors give to their lines. It’s truly Mana Mana Precure. But you know even if it wasn’t a season of Precure, if it was just some random magical girl anime, it would still be bad because of the numerous plot holes, missed opportunities and really stupid coincidences and randomness that drives it. For a show that builds itself around its plot (and it has the greatest focus on plot of any season of Precure easily) it’s shocking that it’s so badly done and poorly thought out.

All that being said I get sort of a weird perverse enjoyment out of watching it, I’m never bored, I guess it’s the whole trainwreck thing. And I did say back in Futari Wa that being boring is the worst thing these shows can ever be, and Doki is definitely not boring if anything. Honestly the season I was looking forward to rewatching the least is actually Happiness Charge because I have no strong feelings towards it in any way. And for all Doki’s flaws there are a few gems to be had, a couple great episodes, a couple good characters, and even though it’s a bad show by any measure at least as far as kids franchises go it’s not as bad as like Kamen Rider Decade or Digimon Adventure 02. No season of Precure will ever be as incompetently made as those shows were.

Well it’s time to get to episode 1.

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The episode starts off with a lone Precure fighting animal like monsters in a devastated world. She’s able to beat the monsters that attack her but there’s still this gigantic stone statue looking devil thing in the middle of the city. Ominous. The Precure cries and laments on how she wasn’t able to protect her world. Reminiscent of how Heartcatch begins.

The opening theme song then plays. It’s pretty good, more of an actual song than just going “Smile smile smile smile” you know?

And after the theme song the episode brings us to Earth where a class of middle school kids is having a field trip to something called the Clover Tower, an absolutely gigantic radio tower, the largest in the world. It’s a big landmark of the city. And then finally, we’re introduced to HER.

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Aida Mana. Yes, that is the face of evil.

She’s the student council president and she’s busy running around helping everyone and solving everyone’s problems on the field trip.

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Her friend Rikka is also there, trying to prevent her from overextending herself . Everything she says falls on deaf ears though. Mana just needs to help everyone. The girls then see that the idol Makopi is at the Clover Tower as well, she’s a new idol who’s been getting popular lately. Mana likes her quite a bit. Mana sees her drop something so she goes to return it and briefly meets her.

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Yeah, I’d say that’s cute enough to be an idol.

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We then see these three fairies that are also at the tower, they sense some kind of evil called the Jikochu (or Selfish or Selfishness or who cares) nearby.

Mana then comes across a vendor at the tower selling jewelry and accessories. One thing instantly catches her eye because it looks like the thing that Makopi dropped. The guy who owns the stuff calls it a Cure Lovies. It seems to react to Mana and some sort of light goes into her heart, the vendor says she can have the Lovies for free now too.

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And no it’s not just you, this guy is creepy and suspicious at this point.

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And then some rich girl arrives at the Clover Tower. And if it feels like I’m just going back and forth and back and forth between a bunch of quick scenes that all make a jumbled mess of an episode well you’re crazy. Anyways rich girl apparently owns the tower, guess we’re at Karen levels of silly wealth here. She also seems to know Mana and refers to her as her precious friend but the two of them don’t meet up this episode.

And while everyone is waiting in line to go to the observation deck of the tower…

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Some guy has selfish thoughts about wanting to cut in line so he can get up there faster, however he realizes it’s wrong to think that way, it wouldn’t be fair to everyone else. But then some voice whispers in his ear, telling him to forget all that and just be selfish, and his heart turns black and the villain uses his power to make it burst from his chest.

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He then turns the heart into a crab monster that starts “cutting” in line and it goes to the top of the tower to cause more havoc. Mana follows it up to stop it and save the people there, she actually starts lecturing the monster on how bad it’s being. I will give it to Mana that she’s at least different.

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The pink fairy Sharuru sees her talking to the monster like that and thinks she would be the perfect Cure so she goes up to her and tells her she’s from the Trump Kingdom (or Card Kingdom or who cares) and that they can transform and fight. Mana is thoroughly unsurprised apparently to see a fairy. Like it’s an every day event for her and she just greets Sharuru like a normal person.

But when Mana tries to transform she’s unable to for some reason. Sharuru turned into her little cell phone form so they don’t know what’s missing. But then the Precure from the beginning of the episode comes in and defeats the crab, purifying it with her attack Holy Sword and the guy gets his heart back.

The villain who made the crab monster then comes in and calls the purple Cure Cure Sword, and then a second crab monster breaks through the ceiling and grabs her.

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There was a second villain here the whole time. A first for Precure. She made the other crab monster out of another person who was tired of standing in line. This woman asks Cure Sword where the “Princess” is. Whoever that might be.

Mana sees all this going on and she really wants to help. Her feelings activate the Cure Lovies and the power inside her and she’s able to transform with Sharuru.

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The transformation is pretty boring, Doki’s stock footage in general is bad, the transformations only being a step above the ones from Yes5 really. But the actual outfit and hair are nice looking. Glad to not have pink on pink again and instead getting a color scheme more like Peach’s.

Anyways here she is. Cure Heart. The vendor guy who gave her the Lovies seems to have realized what just happened and says he’s glad that she’s finally awakened. Alright. I’ll just say right now that nothing involving this guy makes any sense in the long run when we learn about him but whatever.

And so the episode ends there. Doki Doki starts with a two-parter and the first episode is a hectic uneven mess. The ending song is meh. I never really cared for it.

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Heart is already a strong and competent fighter and she shows this off in the beginning of episode two… or maybe the villains Ira and Mammo are just weak. Either way she makes them look like clowns and pretty much dances around them. Who is she, Tendo?

Heart and Sword both fight the second crab monster together. Heart sees that the Jikochu is just someone’s heart forced into this form, so resolves to save them and uses her attack. Afterwards some magical light bathes the whole area and fixes all the damage, people still remember what happened though. Sword also refuses to be Mana’s friend or anything like that after the fight. She tells her fairy, Davi, that she doesn’t need any friends.

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Later that day when everyone is going home Mana and Rikka are talking together. Rikka calls Mana the Happy Prince and tells her about his story. Oh and just some advice but don’t expect anything actually meaningful or important about the Happy Prince to be used as a lesson in Doki or whatever. Rikka just says she’s similar and that she shouldn’t overexert herself for others all the time. She can also tell something is wrong but when Mana tells her about being a Precure and fairies and all that she obviously doesn’t believe her. Rikka is funny, my favorite girl from Doki.

We also see Mana’s family this episode, they are completely irrelevant but her dad looks a bit like Hibiki’s dad. By the way be sure to keep in mind just how irrelevant Mana’s family is, that’s important for the end of the show.

Sharuru, and the two other fairies Raquel (Blue) and Lance (Yellow/Orange), meet up with Mana again. Sharuru tells her she can’t tell anyone about being a Precure but Mana really wants to tell Rikka everything. There’s some good comedy this episode.

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The next day while school is starting some kid is late. He wishes he could change the traffic lights so he wouldn’t be… and that’s apparently selfish enough or whatever for Ira to use him to create a monster. Yeah okay. He becomes a stoplight monster. So no more animals? All the ones we saw in the first episode were animals. I suppose the reason for the change is… I have no idea. Fuck consistency.

Anyways the monster can freeze people by using its “stop” sign.

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When it attacks the school and Mana goes to stop it Rikka says she wants to help Mana, she says Mana cant just do everything herself all the time. They try to work together against it but Mana realizes she needs to transform, much to Sharuru’s annoyance she does it right in front of Rikka because she trusts her and they’ve been friends for so long. Rikka after this even helps in the fight by pressing the button on the monster that changes the light from stop to go so it unfreezes everything. It’s nice when the properties of whatever a monster is made from get used like this. The action for the first two episodes has been a little above average for what you normally see in the first two episodes of a Precure season. THAT GOES AWAY QUICKLY.

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At the end of the episode Rikka is happy Mana told her the truth about everything but Sharuru is worried about her getting caught up in everything now. The second episode is a big improvement over the first but still not great.

So at the beginning of the third episode Rikka is looking at the Cure Lovies under a microscope at school. She can tell it isn’t made from anything on Earth. Kind of cool to have a character like actually scientifically researching Cure stuff and their powers. Rikka and Mana ask the fairies about what’s going on and everything but in true Candy fashion they are less than helpful.

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Unbeknownst to them they accidentally leave a sleeping Lance behind at school when they go home and don’t realize this for a good while. Rikka wants to find the guy who gave Mana her Lovies.

After being around her for a while and seeing how smart and nice she is Raquel asks her to become his Precure partner. Rikka doesn’t think she’s up for it though, she’s not athletic and determined like Mana is. But Mana says Rikka has always supported her. We learn that Rikka’s father is often traveling and her mother works nights a lot so Rikka is pretty independent.

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We then also get to see the villains hideout. It’s a bowling alley. Just because. Not sure if it’s actually in the Trump Kingdom or whatever. A third villain called Bel shows up but he doesn’t do anything right now and Ira just goes out to fight again.

Rikka and Mana then run into the Lovies guy.

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He’s opening up a new shop in town. Rikka is rightfully suspicious of him but he just plays dumb about everything and continues to act fairly weird. He gives Rikka her own Lovies too and it reacts to her in the same way Mana’s did.

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Meanwhile some guy is having selfish thoughts when he sees two girls mailing a love letter. He’s annoyed because he’s unpopular and no one sends him a letter like that. Like always though he tries to not dwell on his selfish thoughts but Ira is there to draw them out, this gets very old very quick. Anyways Ira transforms his heart into… what we’re doing hybrids now? Okay. And it’s also a Baphomet reference I think. None of this makes any sense or means anything. It starts eating peoples letters but it could’ve just been a shredder for that, or just a plain goat. WHY IS IT A GOAT AND A MAILBOX?

Ira is kind of annoyed because it isn’t listening to him (a lot of his Jikochu don’t listen to him) and just eating letters. The girls come across it and Mana transforms. Heart tries to protect the letters from getting eaten so she isn’t fighting back against it. Rikka sees this and realizes Mana needs her.

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She flashes back to when she first met Mana and when she became President. Mana says she’s always needed Rikka and can do so much more if she’s with her. Seeing morals and such like this in Doki is kind of painful. Especially when it just gets more and more hypocritical down the road.

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The Lovies react to Rikka again and she’s able to transform with Raquel into Cure Diamond. She uses her attack Twinkle Diamond to purify the monster. Yeah there really isn’t a fight this episode. Heart is bumped once by the monster but the Jikochu isn’t hit or anything, Diamond just purifies it instantly when she transforms. Which is really lame and dumb and takes away any threat these monsters are supposed to have. 3 episodes in.

And in another dumb event because everything just turns back to normal when the monster is defeated it means Heart getting all concerned over the letters was just random stupidity because she knows if she just purified the Jikochu the healing light would turn everything back to normal.

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Finally at the end of the episode the girls and the two fairies realize Lance has been missing this whole time. That’s when the rich girl from episode 1 and her butler pull up to them. They both know her and are surprised to see her. Alice is her name.

So next episode we learn that Mana and Rikka have both known Alice from a young age, she didn’t go to any fancy school for rich kids. Her butler is straight up called Sebastian by the way.

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By chance Alice found Lance last night, wandering through the city wondering where Sharuru and Raquel were. She almost hit him with her car. Doki sure loves random coincidences. Anyways though Alice actually knew about the Precure already because when Mana transformed and fought in episode 1 she was caught on film by the Clover Tower security cameras. Alice and Sebastian made sure no one else found out about this though.

The fairies then sense a Jikochu, and Sebastian can tell them exactly where it is because the Yotsuba Group is omnipotent and omniscient. Ira made a headphone/ipod monster (and we don’t even learn what the victim of the weeks deal was this time) but its battery power runs out in the middle of the fight and so Heart and Diamond easily dispatch it. As Lance learns after seeing Alice not attempt to help out in the fight Alice has no plans to become a Cure, she merely wishes to support them from the sidelines. Lance is upset because he really wanted her to be his partner.We learn that Alice also already has a Cure Lovies, the same mysterious vendor guy gave her one on the same day Mana got hers at the Clover Tower.

Mana and Rikka tell the fairies why they think Alice doesn’t want to become a Cure. We get a flashback (Alice is developed entirely through flashbacks as you’ll see in later episodes) to when they were kids and Alice beat the crap out of some bullies that were mean to her, Mana and Rikka. Alice is actually really strong and skilled in martial arts. But hurting those kids scared her and she decided to give up martial arts for fear of losing control again. Mana and Rikka think she doesn’t want the power of a Cure because it would be too dangerous and she might hurt someone again.

The fairies then sense another Jikochu but Lance goes to talk to Alice some more to convince her to become a Precure.

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Sebastian talks with Alice and he can tell that she really does want to become a Precure and join Mana and Rikka. But Alice tells him she’s scared of hurting others. But then Lance comes in and tells her that the Precure’s powers are about protecting people. And we get another flashback to Alice’s grandfather (who taught her all her martial arts) telling her the same thing. She remembers this now and comes to an understanding. The Lovies now reacts to her too.

At this time Ira created a boombox monster that actually plugs in to an outlet so it wont run out of power like the last one… yeah. And Heart and Diamond have a bit of trouble with it but luckily Alice is here now to save the day.

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She transforms into Cure Rosetta and dear god that is an awful pose. It’s just like Sailor Mercury’s.

And as expected of a Cure that practices martial arts Rosetta is very strong and she also uses shields, which is her “attack” called Rosetta Wall. Hm. She’s yellow, she’s rich, she practices martial arts, and she uses shields. Hi Sunshine. Her transformation phrase even uses the word sunshine…

Well whatever, she blocks the Jikochu’s attack and uses noise cancelling by banging her shields together to stop it from attacking further and then Heart purifies it. At least sometimes Doki can have some smart fights.

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Mana then mentions finding out about Cure Sword and Alice says she believes that Cure Sword is actually the idol Makopi because she was caught on the Clover Tower’s security cameras too. This surprises Mana a lot.

So to put it simply I do not like Alice. I find her to be a boring plot-device character with a contradictory backstory. More on that in later episodes. Also episodes revolving around her always use flashbacks for some reason. I think every Alice focus episode has a flashback. She is boring and annoying.