A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
The show entertains rather than educates.
Friendship, perseverance, and a positive attitude are keys to Glitter Force's success against their monster foes. This team of five shows there's power in diversity, as each member brings valuable characteristics that make the group stronger. Emily learns that fairy-tale endings are harder to come by than stories would suggest, but by adapting her expectations and keeping the faith, she's rarely disappointed. On the downside, there's some gender stereotyping in how the story equates makeup, accessories, and the girls' overall appearances with their powers.
Positive Role Models
The Glitter Force members are strong figures even without magic's help; each excels in some unique way -- athletic prowess, academics, empathy -- that makes her stand out from her peers. In particular, Emily's determination to always see the good in a situation helps her battle her rivals' seemingly insurmountable strength.
Violence & Scariness
Some falls, bumps, and other accidents but no visible effects. Monsters chase and stalk the girls, but they're not scary in appearance.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Glitter Force is an anime series with strong female role models, a fun fairy-tale twist, and generally happy endings. Villains can be intimidating, but they're not often scary to look at (an inflatable bouncy house sprouts legs and walks around, for instance), and their goal is to cause "unhappy endings" for the general population rather than anything more sinister. The heroines' appearances change immensely when they're in save-the-world mode, which they instigate by giving themselves a magical makeover that lengthens their hair, shortens their skirts, and adds some sparkle to their eyes. Overall they're likable leads, but this attention to their appearances can instigate conversations about body image with your daughters.
Is It Any Good?
With an all-female cast of heroines and some fun tweaks on the standard good-vs.-evil story line, this Japanese anime tries hard to stand out in a populous genre, but it often comes across feeling silly and superficial. Kids, and girls especially, will like Emily's determination and ever-upbeat attitude, and the show does a good job casting each Glitter gal as a positive role model academically, athletically, and/or socially. As the girls' friendship deepens, their strength as a unit grows as well, giving new impact to the term "girl power."
As for flaws, the show's "glitter" shtick grates a bit. Between the glitter packs the girls use for their magical makeovers, the bedazzled boots and brightly colored baby-doll costumes that match their voluminous hair, and the constant references to all things glitter and sparkly, the show is a mild assault on the visual and auditory senses. It's too bad, really, since even without the overblown theme, it's a decent story with strong, appealing female role models.
Did we miss something on diversity?
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Our Editors Recommend
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