With the final three episodes of Snow White with the Red Hair, originally a manga created by Sorata Akizuki, released the anime series has proven to be an absolute wonder. Shirayuki was born with red hair, an unknown hair color in the story’s world, and after fleeing from an unwanted arrangement with her country’s prince, she finds both love and friendship in a new realm. Prince Zen’s actions towards Shirayuki and his subjects reveal his kind heart to both the other characters and the anime’s audience. Both Zen and Shirayuki have developed over the course of these last episodes without losing their individuality. Snow White with the Red Hair has become it’s own beautiful story using the magic of art and words.
A new character arrives to the screen who is need of help from the Clarines royalty. Kihal Toghrul and her trained bird Popo ask Zen to please keep the noble lord who owns her island Yuris from hunting the precious birds. Using what courage she can muster she blatantly asks for Yuris Island to be named a natural reserve so the native birds and the island itself will be protected from the new lord heir who has been destroying islanders way of life. Zen, guided by a suggestion from Shirayuki, comes up with the idea of testing the bird’s ability to fly for long periods of time and descending by the distinct sound of a special bell. He decides if the test is passed, the birds can be used to carry messages across the kingdom faster than by soldier and horse.
Episode 10: Inexperienced Heart, Going Deeper’s storyline melts into the overall plot so well, it seems the island was always there despite not being mentioned till late in the season. This is just another example of the anime’s motive to show how challenging being a royal is and how 2nd Prince Zen must live up to his position.
Although Snow White with the Red Hair is an anime that falls into the fairy tale-romance category, the realities of court life and the danger of being a rare beauty in a greedy world are ever constant. The island’s Lord tries bribing Shirayuki with a promise of noble support at court to insure her a predominate position if she prevents the bird’s test from succeeding. She refuses despite being locked into a room and then in a defiant jump dives into the lake to retrieve the bell the Lord stole and tossed away. Zen becomes furious after learning what happens but what is surprising is seeing one of the chosen unnamed soldiers to witness the test becoming angry and arrests the nobleman.
Snow White continually reveals how Shirayuki as a kind and loyal person is able to give the kingdom of Clarines’ people the courage to stand up for what is right. After this incident, Zen is seriously considering what it means to have Shirayuki by his side. The danger of Shirayuki not being a member of the royal or noble classes weighs on Zen’s mind. It’s refreshing to see reality and fantasy mold together in this anime. Shirayuki’s thoughts about the future and wanting to move forward in life as an independent person by Zen’s side transcends from the screen to the audience.
Episode 11: Encountering… A Color for the First Time finally shows the true feelings between Shirayuki and Zen. However, the side characters are not forgotten nor pushed aside during the reveal. Chief Herbalist Garack recognizes Obi, Shirayuki and Ryuu’s ability to work as a team and benefit from each other. Plus, Mitsuhide’s happiness upon learning Shirayuki’s actions towards Zen reveals his undying loyalty and friendship with Zen which is much more apparent than previous episodes.
The final episode of the season: Goodbye to the Beginning is sweet and leaves behind a tranquil feeling that the characters the fans have fallen for will be happy even with the danger that lurks in the shadows. A clever festival is declared, one that happens only every so many years: Open Castle Day. Clarines’ royal castle opens up a portion of the grounds to allow the common subjects to experience the majestic architecture in addition to proving the kingdom cares for her people. 1st Prince Izana and his younger brother Prince Zen make royal appearances which prompts Shirayuki along with the audience to realize the weight of the entire kingdom and the subjects rest upon their shoulders. Even with this full realization Zen proves his feelings for Shirayukli in a sweet and touching moment on a stage no less.
Snow White is a beautifully animated series for everyone to enjoy and experience. With such loyal characters, this anime will remind viewers that such deep friendships are possible as well as love that rings true. This last episode ends with such sweet and memorable moments that it’s hard to feel sad that the season has ended. Shirayuki’s background was only briefly revealed yet perhaps more of her personal story will come to light with the next season. Snow White with the Red Hair’s anime will continue by airing in Japan this January. If you would like to watch the current season you may visit FUNimation. Shirayuki, Zen and their friends will share their tale with you if you choose to listen.