I have watched eight episodes of Jubei-chan. It’s a very cute anime. The premise is yet another magical girl opening, and she has the pleasure to be linked with a samurai of 300 years ago. Of course, much fun ensues. What really draws me to this piece is that she’s a reluctant hero, and once transformed she looks like a pirate. The only remnant of cuteness is the heat-shaped eyepatch.

Another bit that I like here is the flexibility in animation style. The characters’ style varies with both importance and emoton. This is usually the case with SD, but here this reverts not only to SD forms, but also ultra simple sketch like forms more typical to Doraemon, and other cartoons from the 60s & 70s in Japan. (two other such shows are Xiao Xin and Xiao Wanzi, but I only know the Chinese names as I watch these shows in the afternoon here in Shanghai) This is something that feels fresh in its revival and gives another dimension to the storytelling.

My favorite character is Koinosuke. I know that he’s a pain through most of the series, but he has a tough tak trying to understand the modern world and honor his master while establishing a close friendship with Jubei-chan. Also, he doesn’t have a ridiculous ending. At the start of the series he wants to complete his mission and die. In the end, he completes his mission and dies. It seems like a fitting conclusion after more than 300 years roaming around. I like a man who can stick to his passions, even in the face of enormous “bon bons.”

Fine, he returns in the manga, but one can always leave things in the wonderful world of the first series.

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