I got an e-mail the other day.
Good Day [oh wonderful and handsome and amazing Scamp our lord and savoir],
[I am aware of your gigantic intellect so you probably already know that] Smile Precure started last weekend. You should watch the first episode and [in all your glory and wisdom] post about why you [adored this most fantastic gift from the land of anime, or alternatively why you] immediately dropped it. You know [everything this planet has in store for us, but], for completion’s sake [you should check to see if Precure is any different from how your mighty brain predicted it would be].
The words in brackets were not included in the original e-mail, but they were clearly implied regardless.
I was interested in this new Precure because I wanted to see how differently I reacted to a new version after my Precure marathons last year. It may be true that I ultimately didn’t finish any of them, but that didn’t mean that there wasn’t parts I enjoyed. Apart from Splash Star, I enjoyed the first episode of every single one, and merely bailed when I got bored of the formula. Precure by its very nature is repetitive, so you don’t have to watch the entire series to get your fill. I was prepared to watch maybe 5-6 episodes of Smile Precure before the shiny colours and bitchin’ transformation sequences got old. But man, that first episode was bad.
Let’s leave aside comparing it to other Precures for a second and talk about its flaws as a standalone piece. Within the very opening classroom scene, every single female character has their personality explained by someone. Show, don’t tell is completely abandoned to instantly give you a blunt sentence about each person. It robs the interest of figuring out what makes each character tick through hints when it’s blankly spelled out like that. It’s also not funny. I’ve been watching Gakuen Alice recently, a story about a bunch of 12 year olds with super powers. Like Smile Precure, it’s incredibly goofy, but the humour in Gakuen Alice is clever and actually present. Smile Precure’s jokes fall back on reaction faces. So no good characterisation, no comedy, haha Precure plot, what is there left?
Precure has never done comedy. The plot has always been superflous. It’s the colourful and energetic presentation that makes it fun to watch. This episode of Precure was presented the exact same way as every other Precure ever made. It doesn’t need to evolve, because it’s a franchise aimed at small girls. Every Precure is someone’s first Precure. But if you have watched any other, I really don’t see what watching another would do for you. I’ve played every generation of Pokemon, but that is at least always evolving. This isn’t even a good version of Precure. It’s fairly pointless me reviewing Smile Precure though. Toei will rake in truckloads of money regardless. Blame the guy who sent me that e-mail instead.