(I originally posted this on Crunchyroll. If you would like to watch this anime, go here!)
First off, if you’re looking for something more than a children’s anime, then you should look somewhere else. Fairy Musketeers is a children’s anime all the way to the end, using elements and a storyline that typically would not be appealing to those who strive for something more mature. However, if you’re looking for a children’s anime, like children’s anime, or do not mind children’s anime, this series is well worth a try. This series could be described as a major fairy tale crossover, combined with mahou shoujo (magical girl) and RPG elements, with a tiny bit of Digimon thrown into the mix.
The storyline is simple. A seemingly normal, young boy with a special item inside of him travels to a magic world with the Three Musketeers (Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White, and Briar Rose) and his childhood friend in attempt to finish the fairy tale his mother used to tell him as a child while being hunted by an evil witch named Cendrillion. The storyline isn’t strikingly unique and you can surely find hundreds (if not thousands) of stories with the same plot. However, breaking down the individual episodes and examining them one-by-one, there are few interesting elements. Fairy Musketeers does a fantastic job taking familiar fairy tale stories and tweaking them to fit the storyline of the anime. Some of the fairy tale stories were tweaked for character back stories that retained a good portion of their original elements (such as Hansel & Gretel and the Gingerbread House), while some of the fairy tale stories were combined together within the main storyline (meaning that two different fairy tales were combined into one; I would give you an example, but it would be a spoiler).
The music is fantastic, in my personal opinion. It sounds similar to other children’s anime soundtracks I’ve listened to, but the quality and the impact of the music does not deteriorate because of the similarities. Each track is scored perfectly for the series, giving emotion and impact to all the battle scenes, the silly verbal fights often between Snow White and Ringo, the pep talks that all the characters give each other at one point, the music that played in Cendrillion’s castle and whenever she makes an appearance, the extremely silly “Bremen” track (which I absolutely adore – it’s fun and catchy), and more. It’s definitely music that could help bring you, the viewer, into their world.
The characters are great and overall well designed (even though the Three Musketeers’ designs strike me as a bit odd, but I’m typically thinking Disney when I think of the character’s names). While I’m not going to list all the character designs and what not here, I would like to point out a few interesting points. Snow White is a very conceded princess in this anime, always talking about how beautiful she is and how she’s the best at magic out of the Three Musketeers. As annoying as she is like this, it’s a nice, unexpected change – I’m sure a lot of us are attached to Disney interpretation of her. Briar Rose (better known as Sleeping Beauty) lives up to her typical title people worldwide know her as, as she tends to fall asleep a lot. Interestingly enough, if she’s woken up before she’s ready, she’s extremely moody (of course, most people are when that happens), while when she wakes up on her own, she’s a sweet heart. She also has great observation skills and picks up on a lot of things before the rest of the group. And the last person I’m going to mention is Gretel. She’s very, very attached to her brother, Hansel, for she feels that there’s no one else who cares for them except each other, so she would do literally anything for him. She seems to cling to him a lot. If you want to know about the other characters, just take a look at the anime itself. They range from kind hearted, quiet souls to tsundere types.
The animation was much better than I expected for a children’s show. A lot of children shows I watch seem to often go off model quite a bit, but I’ve noticed this problem only once or twice throughout this 39 episode long series. The animation flows smoothly and the battle scenes are fun to watch, especially since they move and the characters don’t fall off model.
Overall, I highly recommend this series. It had me at the edge of my seat (literally) at certain points, often made me freak out over decisions made or ones that weren’t made, and a few episodes actually moved me to tears. The music is fun, catchy, and goes very well, the animation is smooth, the characters are fantastic, and the storyline, while not over-the-top amazing, is still kept interesting with the stories and the characters intertwined with it. So if you like or don’t mind childish anime, I say try this series, especially if you’re a fan of magical girls and RPGs. It’s a fun adventure and worth watching to the end.