I have already thanked the two bloggers who brought Majestic Prince to my attention; but I would like to reiterate my thanks to them, because I would have avoided this series for two reasons: 1) sci-fi is hardly my favorite genre, and 2) the character animation is especially poor. Even compared to the usual fare of televised American cartoon, it tends toward mediocrity in this department. Fortunately, the mecha designs and backgrounds tend to offer more variety and pleasure for the eye. The mechs receive particular attention to detail from the animators and stand out among other mechs of the genre.
In any event, I should like to add my own cheer to the growing number of fans. The show’s strong point, despite the blandness of their designs, is the uniqueness of our heroes. I am convinced that some of the minor characters must be stock; but, the writer does his best to hide that fact, and the heroes are particularly quirky. Kei is quiet, reserved but capable of sudden exuberance, and has an unrivaled sweet tooth. Izuru, their flight leader, openly proclaims his desire to be a hero, like those characters of his favorite manga, which he is quite adept at drawing. Asagi appears tough, but get stomach aches at critical moments. Tamaki ardently burns for romance and squid guts, but finds the former desire often frustrated. Suruga happens to be a thorough gun nut and compares attractive women to his favorite firearms.
Added to this, there is a great sense of family in the show. The main characters all had their memories wiped out before entering the training program, so they particularly cling to their squadron members, collectively called Team Rabbits by the instructors and, literally, “the Regretful Five,” which is translated as “the Failure Five,” by their classmates due to their inability to cooperate during missions. Asagi seems to take the place of the grandfather, Izuru as the father, Kei as the mother, Sugura as one of the children, and Tamaki as the baby of the family. This is further stressed by how closely knit their teams of mechanics are.
This series also happens to be brilliantly unpredictable in terms of how the battles will end. So far, the audience has been treated to everything from a rousing victory to a Pyrrhic victory to utter defeat. It keeps the audience routing for the protagonists since the outcome of each battle remains uncertain till the fat lady sings. The mechs’ maneuvers fall everywhere from carving great swathes of destruction to hard hitting close combat. Also interesting concerning the mechs is that the pilots’ DNA has been infused into the mechs and that the pilots’ survival instinct determines how well they fight. If they can see survival in fighting, their mechs perform beautifully; otherwise, they might stand petrified or actually flee! This kind of variety keeps the series refreshing.
So, I encourage otaku everywhere to look past the simplistic character designs and give Majestic Prince a try! And here’s a wonderful rant by Kei on the immodesty of the swimsuits which a certain company asked them to wear for publicity (the military often displays the pilots for publicity):