Tag Archives: Free Will

Doki Doki Precure: Princess Marie Ange

Princess Marie AngeThe finale to DokiDoki Precure just aired last Saturday.  I was fortunate enough to have the experience of watching it while it was airing.  I am a beginning student of Japanese, so I was not able to understand much while watching in Japanese except for what I could glean from the visuals.  Still, it was quite exciting to watch while it was airing.  It was particularly fun to see the Japanese commercials.

Luckily, the English subtitles came out rather quickly this week, so I did not have long to wait before I learned how this story would end.

There is a lot to discuss now that the series is complete, more than can be discussed in just one article.   Here on Senshi, we have covered the ongoing series extensively, so it seems fit to explore some of the many topics of the series.

Princess Marie Ange, and her descendants, are central to the story that was told in Doki Doki Precure.  Princesses in stories can represent Archetypal Maids, and I think that in this story, Princess Marie Ange represents humanity as a whole.  In episode 46, we learn what happened to the Princess, and how she broke her heart in two as a result of the painful knowledge that her father had opened the door to Evil in order to save her life.  I refer the reader back to Cure Tadashiku’s article, Doki Doki Precure 46: The Fundamental Questions of Existence.

The Two Halves Must Fight

Half of the Princess’ heart became Regina-san, who fell by her father.  As we recall, her father was possessed by Evil and became King Selfish.  The other half of her heart fell in the arms of a traditional grandmother and became Aguri-chan/Cure Ace.  The Princess’ empty shell became the baby, Ai-chan.

Chibi Regina-san In episode 46, we are told that Aguri-chan and Regina-san are the Light and Shadow sides of the Princess.  Indeed the part of the Princess’ heart that had become Regina-san had become dark and corrupt.  Yet, Regina-san was able to be purified.

The topic of Light and Shadow Selves, or True and False Selves, is a recurring theme in Precure.  In Heartcatch Precure, Cure Moonlight’s Shadow Self or False Self is represented by Dark Precure.  Cure Moonlight also had a father who had been corrupted by Evil, and her father created Dark Precure specifically to be her enemy.  In Heartcatch Precure, to defeat Dark Precure, Cure Moonlight had to embrace her, and when she did, Dark Precure dissolved, and Cure Moonlight’s broken heartseed became whole.

Why did this not happen the same way in Doki Doki Precure?

I think that the reason for this is that Regina-san was not really the Princess’ False Self.  When the Princess split her heart in two, she said that one half was the love she had for her father and the other half was the love to protect everyone’s smiles.  She was under the mistaken belief that conflict between these halves was inevitable.  Yet, before the King became corrupt, these two sides were united, and her whole heart was pure.

Saving the KingOn the opening page of the Daughters of Shining Harmony, there is a discussion of love, or Amity.  The article can be found here.   This article explains that there are two types of Amity, Menamity and Mayamity.  Menamity, or Little Amity, is the love that binds all people together, or “the love to protect everyone’s smile.”  Mayamity, or Great Amity, is deep personal love which may exist between family and close friends.  In the West, there is sometimes the mistaken notion that these types of love are in conflict with one another, and that deep personal love excludes a more general love for others.

This is exactly the lie that Bel-san told the Princess, that her love for her father, and the love that he had for her, was selfish, and that it excluded the love for their people.  The King believed that lie when he sacrificed the peace and well-being of his Kingdom to save his daughter, and then the Princess believed that lie, which caused half of her own heart to become corrupt as well.  She could not choose between Mayamity and Menamity, so she split her heart in two, believing that these parts of her heart would have to fight each other.

As the story progresses through the finale, we learn that the Princess was wrong.  Her love for her father, embodied in Regina-san, and the love to protect everyone’s smiles, embodied in Aguri-chan, did not have to fight at all.  Indeed, it was when they united that they were able to free their father from King Selfish, which also saved the world.

Two Hearts Becoming Whole

In the end, Regina-san learns Menamity, and Aguri-chan learns Mayamity.  Both halves of the Princess’ heart become whole again.  Regina-san helps save the world, and Aguri-chan learns to make friends.  The love for one’s family and the love to protect everyone’s smiles are indeed both love and they are in harmony with one another.

Regina-san and Free Will

I have just seen the most recent episode of DokiDoki Precure, and the story is getting fascinating.  For those who are not up-to-date with DokiDoki Precure, this article will contain some spoilers, I am afraid.  At the time of the writing of this article, DokiDoki Precure, Episode 20 has just aired and has left us with a bit of a cliffhanger.  Actually, that is quite the understatement, it has left us with a huge cliffhanger.  As has been discussed previously on this site, the main premise behind DokiDoki Precure is an exploration of selfless love and selfishness.  This premise is also intertwined with the premise of Free Will.  Until recently, in each episode, the victim has tried to resist her selfish thoughts before they were amplified by the Forces of Darkness.

Regina-sanThere has been a new character from the Selfish Kingdom, though, who seems to have the ability to steal people’s hearts without an obvious opening.  This is Regina-san.  Regina-san is King Selfish’s daughter.  She is quite interesting in that she started off almost unaware that there was any alternative to selfishness.  Her morality is almost at the level of a very little child, a child who has not yet learned  to distinguish between right and wrong.  She just knows what she wants. Regina-san with Crystals

Mana-san has taken her under her wing as her friend, but Mana-san’s real role seems to be that of a senpai or big sister.  Mana-san has taken it upon herself to teach Regina-san how to be part of a group or a community.  Up until the present episode, Regina-san has been a bit of a difficult student, to say the least.  She has tried to separate Mana-san from the other Precure girls in order to attempt to be Mana-san’s only friend.

She made her first true moral choice at the end of Episode 19, and she makes the wrong moral choice.  She breaks her promise and betrays her friendship with Mana-san.  Yet, then in Episode 20, she repents, apologizes, and corrects her previous misdeed!

Regina-san giving back crystals

It is interesting that King Selfish’s daughter, Regina-san, is the pivotal character in this analysis of Free Will.  In this story, Free Will is the power to make moral choices, and the right moral choice is a selfless act, not a selfish one.  This is in stark contrast to the Western understanding of Free Will, which tends to be a belief in the freedom to do whatever we want.  Yet, in this series, when people selfishly try do what they want without consideration of others, it leaves them open to be used and to be controlled by the villains.

We are left at the end with a trailer to Episode 21, and with the promise that a new Precure will manifest.  I wonder if Regina-san will emerge as this new Precure.  There is certainly precedent for a villain to become a Precure.  See Is Innocence Safe?  Sadly, we will have to wait until next week to find out.