Galaxy Fraulein Yuna Returns (Japan 1996)

Rating: ***
Review Date: 8/22/99

Divided into three installments.

ADV's tagline really hits the spot - "No one knows the evil that lurks in the hearts of little girls." A vast improvement over the original series, although in the first ten minutes I was prepared for major disappointment. Fortunately, most of the irritating silliness is taken care of quickly, and the show takes a dark and dramatic turn as three android sisters come to destroy Yuna and the Earth as well. Yuna's got at least two dozen other cute girls helping her out, but it's Yuna's intense warmth and love that ultimately defeats the first sister and turns her into their friend and ally. The other two sisters aren't as easy to persuade, however. Everyone takes a pretty sound beating and much destruction ensues. The intense and frightening ferocity of Yuna's finishing move on the third sister even shocked and surprised me. You go, girl! Much like "Sailor Moon," the drama and angst that propels the battle sequences revolves around Yuna's universal love and kindness, and her friends gladly put their lives on the line to protect her. With as cute and fluffy as it is, it sure does get intense at times. The character designs are all adorably, but not sickeningly, cute and the battle sequences are fantastic and plentiful. These cute little girls are full of rage and really mean business. It's also worthy to note that very much like "Project A-ko" (1986), there is not a single male character anywhere to be found. That's a good thing, since it frees the show from stupid sexist dialogue and misogynistic themes. Surprisingly refreshing and satisfying.