Meet Nike, the fourth princess of the Rain Kingdom who has been shipped off to the Sun Kingdom to marry their king as a political arrangement. Nike isn’t exactly your typical princess–for one; she shirks off the company of her retinue and arrives in the kingdom early so that she can get a feel for the people. She also proves to be a bit ditzy, as shown when she is taken for a fool by two thieves. On top of this, she seems to lack some common sense, as she engages in a scuffle with some guards after they call her “suspicious.” These personality quirks certainly don’t make her an unlikable character, though, as she also comes across as a kind, caring person, willing to repay kindness for kindness.
The World Is Still Beautiful is a bit of a mix as far as genres go. It is definitely fantasy, but it rides the line between drama and comedy, with some scenes definitely veering on the side of drama (a kidnapping and seemingly dark, mysterious plot being discussed between two characters, for example) while others steer more towards comedy, such as Nike’s inability to use her magic due to hunger and her aforementioned scuffle with the guards. The show isn’t devoid of problems, as you’ll see in the “A Christian Perspective” section, but it does present us with a strong female lead who should be enjoyable to watch. Seeing where the plot goes should prove interesting, too, as Nike meets the Sun King at the end of the first episode (rather than the show being about her journey to meet him).
A Christian Perspective:
Well, let’s get the worst out of the way: fanservice. It doesn’t run rampant here, but it is present. There is a scene in the intro where a female character is shown naked, though her breasts are mostly covered by her hair. This, of course, is easily remedied by skipping the intro (which I will be doing from here on out; of course, I always skip the intros, anyway). Another scene, around 9:35 – 9:48, introduces Nike’s sisters by showing them in bathing suits–two in bikinis, one in a school swim suit–all in suggestive poses. The two in bikinis are, of course, showing cleavage. The thing is, this is an imagined scene (there’s even something to that effect posted on the screen!) This, right here, is a prime definition of fanservice for the sake of fanservice. In the end credits, we also see a shot of the Sun King’s butt.
One other point I’d like to bring up is that the two thieves kidnap a girl at one point, and then comment about making her do service shots because they have to please the male viewers. This really does not have a positive reflection on male anime fans. I could care less about the breaking of the fourth wall, but the fact that the writers included this would suggest that they think this is what the male viewers want to see. Thankfully, no service is actually done, as Nike shows up to heroically save the day, but the commentary on the male anime fandom is not positive.
There is a little bit of language, all from the thieves (and possibly just one of them) as far as I remember. One scene shows two characters presumably with alcohol, and there is some light violence. Also, Nike is capable of using magic. This is probably to be expected from a fantasy series, but if you are not comfortable with characters using “magic,” then you may want to skip this, as I’m not sure how much her magic powers will play into the plot.
So there it is. The content for the majority of the episode is clean, with the exception of the fanservice. While I certainly used a lot of space to explain the fanservice shots, they probably don’t make up much more than a minute total of screen time. They are also easily skippable, as long as you don’t mind missing the introduction of Nike’s sisters (Hey, that’s what Wikipedia is for!).
Language: 1 “d**n”, 1 “p***es”, 1 “t*ts”
Alcohol/Drug Use: Two characters are sitting together with what looks like a bottle of sake in front of them. One is holding what I think is a sake cup.
Nudity/Sex/Fanservice: The intro has a shot of a naked female character. You can see parts of her breasts, though her hair covers the majority of them. Three female characters are shown in bathing suits (and in suggestive positions)–two in bikinis (so, cleavage) and one in a school swimsuit (roughly 9:35-9:48). This scene is shown again during the end credits; at the very end of the ending credits, the sun king gets out of bed and he’s naked. We see his bare butt
Violence: A character is bumped into and knocked to the ground; a character is tripped; Nike attacks the thieves with her magic
Other: Nike seems to have magical powers