“Playing Dress-up” – Princess Jellyfish (anime) – 10/10 Disco Balls

The finest clothing made is a person’s skin, but, of course, society demands something more than this. ~Mark Twain

Genre: Comedy/Josei/Gender-bender

Review Status: Complete (11 Episodes/ 11 Episodes)

Licensed: This anime is licensed in the US by Funimation.

Dub vs Sub: When it first came out, I watched it with sub, and that’s really good. They got all the drag-quuen, geeky and proper voices just right for all the characters! On my recent re-watch with the dub, I discovered that the sub is just as good. Funi did an above-average job getting those voices just right. Good job, Funi! I’m considering both dub and sub equally good!

Art/Animation: Overall this looks very cute. It’s not very stylized, but that works in its favor. The colors are bright and the animation very good.

Summary: The story centers around Tsukimi Kurashita, a huge fan of jellyfish and moves to Tokyo to become an illustrator. She moves into “Amamizukan,” an apartment complex that is full of fujoshi (diehard female otaku) with a no-men-allowed rule. However, one day, Tsukimi invites a stylishly fashionable woman to stay at her room at Amamizukan — only to discover that the guest is not who “she” seems to be. (Source: ANN)

Review: This anime is all about the characters. From the eccentric residents of the apartments, to Kuranosuke and his family, to the various others that become part of the cast, this anime shows how they all act, interact, and influence each other’s lives.

Kuranosuke and Tsukimi’s meeting was a wonderful coincidence- they started bonding over Tsukimi’s love of jellyfish, and Kuranosuke- intrigued by the girl who dressed oddly but had a passionate love for something- quickly makes himself at home in the apartments. Then you start really getting to know the characters.

The great thing is how well they get along together! Mayaya, the ever-enthusiastic lover of Records of the Three Kingdoms and Banba, the afro’d train-crazy gal, are good comedic foils for each other, feeding off of each other’s excitement and generally making things more wacky. Jiji gets pushed to the side and ignored for the most part, but she’s fond of older men. You have the mysterious mangaka living upstairs who passes all edicts of behavior and problems from underneath her door. Chieko, the doll-lover and talented seamstress, keeps order in the day-to-day activities of the girls. All of them work off of eachother’s energy and create an interesting bunch of friends.

The rest of the cast is equally engaging, which makes it a joy to watch as they are all confronted with life choices and bits of the past that still affect them. The other thing that makes it interesting is that, while the characters and their characteristics are somewhat exaggerated, the situations they are in aren’t. It never failed to be amusing to watch these girls try to deal with everyday occurrences, such as trying to keep their home from being torn down. This manages to keep about three plots and sub-plots going at once, but never gets confusing, which is amazing and makes it all more interesting.

It was easy to cheer for them and fun to watch them engage life. And the ending, while it didn’t tie up all the story ends, still managed to go out on a high note. I don’t think I could have asked for better.

Overall, this was a sweet, fun show that gave me warm fuzzies. I will for sure be picking up the manga after this!

Recommended: YES! 15+, though. In one episode someone is given what’s apparently a date-rape drug. While they pass out, even though no sex occurs, pictures that imply such are taken and used as blackmail. One of the character’s outfits are a bit slinky, but no nudity occurs- bathing suit amount of skin is shown. One of the guy characters acts very girly for a full-grown man, which is sometimes a bit disturbing. And one of the main characters is a cross-dresser, though he’s heterosexual.

Other titles you might enjoy:
Paradise Kiss (manga and anime)
Ouran Host Club (anime and manga)
Wallflower (manga and anime)
Tatami Galaxy (anime)
Mishounen Produce (manga)
½ Prince (manga)
High School Debut (manga)
Kimi ni Todoke(anime and manga)


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