Murder Princess Retro Review | 34/100 |

“It will have blood, they say; blood will have blood.” – William Shakespeare

Title: Murder Princess
Original Video Animation
Genre: Action, Comedy
Produced: Bee Train

Sometimes I browse through anime looking for something that has a short run, manages to be pock marked with gaping plot holes, lathered in poorly drawn blood, and strung together with an unsatisfying yuri relationship with a single scene that attempts to titillate with a violet haired maid with boxy cleavage… I guess its for those who find pointy breasts “titillating”.

Well I just happened to find Murder Princess on a recent excavation to fill the above void in my life. The concept seemed interesting enough, a lovely princess with a well endowed bosom, Alita, switches souls with a ‘bad-ass’ female bounty hunter, Falis, and together they must save the kingdom and eventually the world.. Now the disappointment begins early on, the said bounty hunter having no ass to be ‘bad’ to begin with. To my dismay, my frustration with series only grew threatening, to blossom into a deep seated depression. In my head all I could think about was coming up with a proper metaphor in my review for why this show was so terrible. So I came up with this: Instead of stringing together sentences in a cohesive fashion I’ve decided to list them in order of the number of times that specific bullet point has the letter ‘T’ in it. Please note, that sometimes this rule is broken for no apparent reason. (Instead of bullet’s I’ll be numbering them):

  • Omniscient characters that seem to know everything.
  • Acrobatic logic has the viewer bounding over inconsistencies with the actual plot.
  • They know everything.
  • A story with a foundation of Jello
  • Everything… I mean…
  • Characters interact predictably and relationships are barely explored
  • Every diet needs a little wiggle room.
  • A plot twist so opaquely foreshadowed, it hits the conscious like a sack of “D’oh”.
  • They have eyes everywhere… looking for you.

All bow down to the Princess! Falis, the lead, is a source of raw carnage. For most of the six installments, purple and crimson blood is smeared across her features, revealing her carnal side. But behind this fierce visage, locked behind closed doors, she is kind and compassionate to her subordinate Alita. Both are mildly interesting at first glace, but become annoying caricatures, lacking any sort of substantial development. The narrative tries to reconcile this in the last two installments through the use of flashbacks. These don’t really offer any sort of insight, just inspiring a dull, “I expected that” feeling. These ailments plague the antagonists of Murder Princess as well. Their motivations remain a mystery till the very end and even then the viewer has to ask why. No explanation is given, and these villains just fall flat.

The colorful art of Murder Princess is appealing to say the least. Bright hues of the castle live vividly against the blue shades of the outdoor realm. Character designs follow, just as varied and attractive, some characteristic of the composition used in Soul Eater, ranging from the gothic-influenced cyborgs to more typical anime fair of Victorian tailored android lolis.

The strong art struggles with poor animation though. Emotional inflections are broadcast through the height of the eye socket and the narrowing of pupils. Wide eyes are a sign of delight, those drawn thin are indicative of sadness. This sort of tepid aesthetic is reflected in the combat, which overindulges in cutaways and close-ups. Action starts seeming like a stuttered afterthought, even though it is clear this program aims to be an excuse to see a girl fight in a dress. I’m heartbroken it didn’t deliver, but sometimes dreams just don’t come true.

An excellent Opening graces Murder Princess. “Hikari Sasuhou” by BACK-ON is a fantastic mix of punk rock and rap, a hectic collage that entertains. The tempo is complete opposite to the Closing theme, a simple melody that rides on the backbone of a single violin and guitar. Soothing, but “Naked Flower” by Romi Paku fails to enrapture the ears like the fantastic OP.  Beyond the two songs the rest of the soundtrack is mediocre at best, piecing together electric guitars and a bland orchestral score. It works, they could have just put BACK-ON on repeat, and I would have been happy. Sadly,  The over-embellished voice acting made me miserable though, the seiyuu’s efforts seem forced. Falis at times speaks like a woman trying to sound like man trying to sound like a woman. I know, just the thought of it makes me shiver.

There are a few things one must come away with when watches such an excellent program:

  • Don’t get your hopes up
  • There are eyes everywhere
  • Every diet needs a little wiggle room.
Story: 2/10
Characters: 3/10
Production: 5/10
Originality: 2/10
Entertainment: 5/10
Overall: 34/100

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