Uzume is a girl who is really good at card games! …Or used to be, anyway. After entering middle school Uzume has decided to put all those “childish games” behind her. However, after a strange man slips a pack of cards into her schoolbag, she finds herself accosted by an angry girl trying to get said card pack. This incident causes Uzume to accidentally summon a girl from a card–whom she becomes the master of. The girl reveals herself to be Sasara, a “Fantasista Doll.” Uzume and Sasara are then attacked by the Angry Girl, who summons a ninja girl from her own deck of cards.
After Uzume quickly equips Sasara with some proper attire, Sasara and the ninja girl duke it out, with Sasara coming out on top. The Angry Girl leaves, annoyed. She also leaves behind the card from which the ninja girl was summoned, and it promptly gets added to Uzume’s deck.
That night at her place, Uzume meets with the four other Fantasista Dolls that were originally in the deck. Although she doesn’t want to be a Master initially, it’s shown that she gets along very well with the Dolls. Suddenly, a voice from her window calls to her, and Uzume meets a strange man clad in a white tuxedo, who gifts her with a bouquet of flowers. He tells her to become a Card Master right before leaving as mysteriously as he came.
This episode was utterly ridiculous and girly. AND I LOVED IT.
I can’t help getting the feeling that this series is really meant to be “otaku bait;” but at the same time it’s so girly that I don’t really care if it is. There are strong, strong CLAMP vibes coming from this series; from the art style to the character designs, to the OP and ED sequence. It’s more reminiscent of old-school CLAMP anime, and I can’t help but feel a bit nostalgic while watching this.
So far Uzume isn’t really bringing anything new to the “main character” table. And Sasara and the other Fantasista Dolls seem like they’re probably going to follow typical anime archetypes. (Sasara is the hot-headed one, while the others seem like the “air-head,” the “older sister-type,” the “tsundere,” and the “stoic.”) But… I can’t help but be intrigued. In terms of character design, Uzume is really reminding me of Sakura from CCS. And the Dolls themselves do have somewhat generic designs, as I see the Japanese Schoolgirl-looking outfit and Gothic Lolita in there. But their designs at least look somewhat more… natural (than Gen’ei o Kakeru Taiyou’s anyway).
In terms of story, there are… clichés everywhere. Main Character is surprisingly good at using this shiny new trinket! There is a dark-haired rival who decides not to “finish off” the heroine right away! There is a mysterious dude who acts as a guardian to the MC! This is all really typical of mahou shoujo anime, though at least the twist here is that Uzume isn’t actually the one transforming… and she has a harem. Of Dolls that CAN transform. The whole premise is utterly ridiculous and feels like the anime creators were just mashing any cool story element they could think of together and yet… I FOUND MYSELF ENJOYING THIS?!? It’s kind of like Twin Angel—the series seems so ridiculous that it’s just fun to watch. Though I sincerely hope that it doesn’t go the terrible route that Twin Angel did.
Overall, if you can get past the silliness of this, and love magical girl series’ as much as I do; then you might like this. Fantasista Doll doesn’t bring anything new to the table yet, though I’m sure that might change with future episodes. The animation is really beautiful and the fight scenes so far seem pretty cool. Mainly, I’m just glad that they went with a female lead for this one—if the MC was a guy, this show would seem really skeevy, wouldn’t it?
Anyway, out of five for this episode:
WHY ARE THERE SO MANY ANIME I WANT TO BLOG THIS SEASON
IT’S ALMOST UNFAIR
(In all seriousness, though; this has made its way to the top of my “to review” list. All that’s left now is whether I actually have the time for it…)