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Fairy Tales in Anime and Manga


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Princess_Irene



Joined: 16 Dec 2008
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Location: The castle beyond the Goblin City
PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 11:51 am Reply with quote
Ah, I see what you're asking now! Smile Okay. I have to do some research to fully figure this out, but this appears to be similar to cases where the girl is sent out into the snow wearing paper clothes (such as in "The Kind and Unkind Girls" stories) or other tales where the actual garment functions as a test in and of itself. The number 7 itself is generally considered significant in folklore (along with 3), but theories vary as to why.
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Zin5ki



Joined: 06 Jan 2008
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Location: London, UK
PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 12:53 pm Reply with quote
Parsifal24 wrote:
A case could also be made for Chobits being a kind of Pinocchio story as well but that is debatable at best.

Both Frankenstein and Ovid's story of Pygmalion have been mentioned in comparison to certain "robot girl" anime over the years, but interestingly enough, the particular case of Chobits was recently likened by a forum member to The Little Mermaid on thematic grounds.
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Princess_Irene



Joined: 16 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 1:42 pm Reply with quote
^Though to be horribly nit-picky, neither of those are oral fairy tales - Pinocchio is a fantasy novel and "The Little Mermaid" is one of Andersen's literary tales. I've actually tried to come up with a good fairy tale base for Chobits, but the closest I can come is "The Snow Maiden" (AT703), where an artificial woman made of snow comes to life. It's an imperfect fit at best.
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gabuhaha



Joined: 01 Mar 2016
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 3:15 pm Reply with quote
Nice article. I would put Hana Yori Dango in with the Beauty and the Beast tales rather than Cinderella though. It does have elements of Cinderella with her being poor and being taken into the higher class lifestyle but Domyouji is the one the turns from being a horrible person (the beast) into a decent one (the prince) specifically because of Tsukushi.
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zfunk



Joined: 05 Nov 2016
Posts: 45
PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 9:58 pm Reply with quote
Hi I am new here.

I too want to second Grimm Fairy Tale Classics, I grew up with that and might have been the first anime I ever seen even though I didn't know it at the time.

Also want to mention Cinderella Monogatari, they did a great job of creating a innovating way of telling the story of Cinderella, it is not perfect, I have some nip picks, I thought Cinderella at times can act too much like a damsel especially in the last episode.

I did like what they did with the whole step family, two things, first of all they kept the father alive, so gives Cinderella or Ella if you prefer why she stays, since her dad is still married to that woman, she has more of a reason to stick around, other wise just get out of there stupid. Also they make the step family not complete villains, and toned down their meanness, which makes the redemption more justified. One of the things I don't like about the classic tales, a lot of the versions the step family they are complete monsters, they are awful, they are nothing redeemable about them, and at the end Cinderella just forgives them, and everyone has a happy ending that is BS. You can't have it both ways, if they act completely evil and heartless though the whole story, than they shouldn't be redeemed and not get a happy ending, or tone them down a bit, give them some depth, some humanity, so they can forgiven at the end, if that is what you want, which is what this series choose.

Because of that, they had to have their own villain, the evil duke, who once again I wish Cinderella more to do with his defeat than the prince.

Anyway I just wish I could find the Japanese version of it, I can only find the dub version.
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Heishi



Joined: 06 Mar 2016
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 10:59 pm Reply with quote
I often wonder if there is a weird adaption of "The Ugly Duckling"?
Would love to see something like that.
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+ 光



Joined: 22 Mar 2016
Posts: 226
PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2016 12:23 am Reply with quote
Just a quick comment before i need to go: Yes, yes and yes on the Skip Beat part!♥
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2016 12:37 am Reply with quote
Heishi wrote:
I often wonder if there is a weird adaption of "The Ugly Duckling"?

I always looked at Princess Tutu that way. Not only is she an actual duck, but she transforms into a human girl as well as a beautiful, graceful dancer. Ok, she keeps changing back into a duck, but the gist of the story about a late bloomer is still kinda there. There's also a bit of Little Mermaid in the mix I think.
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Princess_Irene



Joined: 16 Dec 2008
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2016 7:59 am Reply with quote
Ai Morinaga's manga The Duck Prince is her take on Andersen's "The Ugly Duckling," and I'd definitely agree that Tutu is one as well. You could probably make the argument for Kiss Him, Not Me having Ugly Duckling elements as well.
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jutsuri



Joined: 14 Aug 2015
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2016 9:50 pm Reply with quote
Great article! I always enjoy reading about the influence of literature, folklore, and mythology on manga.

I wish I could contribute a couple more fairy tale inspired anime, I know I've seen a few but I can't remember any of the titles at the moment. There was one in which fairy tales were forbidden that was intriguing but I can't remember enough about it to find the title.

On a different note I'm curious if the Princess and the Pea is one of the Brides' Test stories.
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Crisha
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Joined: 21 Apr 2010
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2016 11:00 pm Reply with quote
I absolutely love fairy tales, folklores, and the like, so this was a treat to read. Thank you very much, Rebecca, for the amount of thought and effort you put into this. I've added some of these to my Read List now.

One of my personal favorite fairy tales is Beauty and the Beast, though since its origins is not oral I didn't expect to see it listed here. I'd love it if you did another one of these series based on written fairy tales, Rebecca.

To those interested in folklore, I recommend a podcast series called Lore, by Aaron Mahnke. Lore explores the real-life history behind several lores told in a format similar to a campfire story.

Princess_Irene wrote:
(Legends like "The Pied Piper" are a whole different thing, with some probably historical event behind them.)

Episode 24 of Lore discusses this later on in the episode. The story ties back to the German village of Hamelin during the 13th century, where the Piper leads away the rats in promise for a fee, is never paid, and then comes back later and leads away all of the children. Scholars are in agreement that the rats were a later addition, about 300 years after the events, and they think they know the truth behind story now. Apparently a battle happened 50 years before that opened up new territory that needed colonists, and men called "locators" were assign to travel the land and find volunteers to populate the new territory. But rather than uprooting their own lives, the adults from the village would sell their children to these men.
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Chiibi



Joined: 19 Dec 2011
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2016 12:12 pm Reply with quote
I would probably go to Princess Tutu first for "best anime on fairytales" though I do wish I could rewatch the 80s series of Grimm's again.

The fairytale Hansel and Gretel artwork in Flip Flappers' ending is SO charming that it inspired me to write a fairytale setting for a new original story I'm working on.^^
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redsyndrome



Joined: 14 Mar 2008
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2016 4:13 pm Reply with quote
Would Le Portrait de Petit Cossette count as a fairy tale adaptation of Sleeping Beauty? It felt like it.
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Princess_Irene



Joined: 16 Dec 2008
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Location: The castle beyond the Goblin City
PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:43 am Reply with quote
jutsuri wrote:

On a different note I'm curious if the Princess and the Pea is one of the Brides' Test stories.


Yes, it is! Every so often Hans Christian Andersen stumbled into a retelling (there's no indication that it was deliberate, but also none that it wasn't), and "The Princess and the Pea" is one of them. The other big one is "The Wild Swans," which is a variant of AT451, The Brothers Who Were Turned into Birds.

redsyndrome wrote:
Would Le Portrait de Petit Cossette count as a fairy tale adaptation of Sleeping Beauty?


It absolutely would, and I'm kicking myself for forgetting it. (I left the King of Thorn movie out on purpose because I wanted to re-read the manga and look for any Sleeping Beauty clues.)

@willag
I'm so glad you liked it! "Beauty and the Beast" could practically be its own article - as was said, half the shoujo romances I labeled as Cinderella A could also be those. There is a tale type for it - AT425C - but Madame le Prince de Beaumont's 1757 literary version has become THE go-to variant. I'm personally a big fan of "East of the Sun, West of the Moon" for animal bridegroom stories, and there are specific tale types for specific animal husbands: frogs (AT440), hogs (AT441), and snakes (AT433C), as well as animal brides (AT402). If you ever read that picture book about the Japanese man who marries a woman who weaves the most perfect sails (because she's really a crane and uses her own breast feathers), that's a good example of AT402 - they tend to have less happy endings than the ones where the groom is the animal.
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