March 9, 2020

Adventures in Anime #3: Snow White with the Red Hair

It's always exciting when Rachel & I come up with a blog series to collaborate on, but I'm especially thrilled about Adventures in Anime (formerly known as Friends with Anime)! We share a mutual love for anime (with our tastes particularly aligning over shōjo shows) and decided that it would be a fun new project to pick out shows to watch (or rewatch) together before answering a series of questions. It's been five (!) years since our initial post, but our love for anime has only grown in the time since. And so, I'm glad we decided to start doing this feature again! This time around, we're featuring an anime that we both love: Snow White with the Red Hair.

Summary: Shirayuki, a young apothecary with beautiful red hair, finds her life upended when the silly prince of Tanbarun tries to force her to be his concubine. Determined not to give up her freedom, Shirayuki escapes into the forest and finds herself rescued from her circumstances by someone unexpected: Zen Wistaria, the second prince of the neighboring kingdom of Clarines, and his two attendants. Inspired by the young prince's attitude and determined to forge a path of her own, Shirayuki set her sights on becoming a court herbalist of Clarines. Shirayuki begins her life at the palace, Zen continues to work at becoming a prince worthy of his title and the pair slowly learn how to support each other while walking their own individual paths.

Thoughts: I love, love, love Snow White with the Red Hair. I get overwhelmed sometimes by the sheer amount of love I have for this story whenever I think about it! My heart literally can't handle how adorable and wholesome and wonderful and emotional an experience it is, and I genuinely enjoyed every second of this well-planned plot. But what truly elevated this story to new favorite status are, as might be expected if you're a regular blog reader, the characters. I just fell so head over heels in love with this whole cast, and genuinely cared about them as if they were real friends.

Favorite Character(s): Shirayuki is absolutely my favorite character of the series! She is so independent, stubborn, feisty and determined to forge her own path. She also has such a kind, loyal and understanding personality, and will always stand up for the right thing. She is also incredibly vulnerable, and I really appreciated that the show didn't shy away from revealing that side of her personality. But honestly, I also just am in love with the whole gang too! Zen, who cares so deeply about his kingdom and wants to do his best as its prince; who doesn't trust easily, but when he does trust, it runs deep and often is paired with genuine love and respect; who is kind and clever and easily amused. Mitsuhide, who feels very much like a lovable big brother (who is occasionally an idiot). Kiki, who is much like a no-nonsense big sister with a sharp tongue. And Obi, the mischievous nuisance who has no fear of being direct with the others and who finds himself attached before he knows it!

Favorite Episode: It's really hard to pick just one episode for an answer because there are so many excellent ones that I really could have pointed out! (I'm going to do a quick shoutout to a few episodes: S1E10-S1E11, which gives me so many feels, S2E19, which was really exciting and sweet to watch, and S2E21, which just made my heart feel so full.) But truly, I'm going to have to go with the very first episode, the one that started it all. I truly think that it is the perfect set-up for the story and most of the main characters! It instantly had me invested in the gang, and wanting more, and I think that's always a good thing for a pilot episode.

Favorite Scene: There's a moment in the forest that surrounds Zen's castle, near abandoned ruins, in S1E11, where Shirayuki and Zen have an incredibly important conversation. It is a life-changing, path-altering discussion, and I truly consider it one of the most pivotal moments of the series.

Favorite Quote(s): For once, I can actually cheat and say that I have more than one quote that really struck me from the series! And they are from the bookend episodes, AKA the very first episode and the very last episode (currently). From the first episode, I love when Zen says, "Red is supposed to be the color of fate, right? Even if it's annoying now, it might connect to something good when you least expect it." And from the last episode, I love when Shirayuki says, "If I could, I would wish for my story to be painted with the color of fate." 

Favorite Setting: I love Zen's home castle in Clarines! There are so many spots there that become important and familiar over the course of the series. It really grounds the viewer in the setting, and I loved that a lot.

Favorite Kiss: Honestly, I would 100% just say all of the Zen & Shirayuki's kisses are wonderful! But my personal favorite kiss happens in S2E12, because I was dying from the feels when it finally came about. It just felt so earned for this couple, and it was so satisfying after seeing their relationship develop even further.

Have you watched (or read) Snow White with the Red Hair? 


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