Hime-chan no Ribbon is a wonderful Magical Girl series about a young girl, Himeko Nonohara, who is given a magical Ribbon by a princess from another world, a Magical Kingdom. It seems that everyone on Earth has an identical double of them living in this Magical World. For Himeko, her double happens to be the princess. (This makes sense, as the “Hime” part of Himeko’s name means “princess.”) Like most Magical Girls, Himeko is in junior high, is a cheerful tomboy, and is a bit clumsy. She is the middle child in her family, with the feminine and pretty Aiko as an older sister, and the cute Yumeko for a younger sister. Himeko has a major crush on her sempai, or upperclassman, who is in the drama club with her, and always seems to run into the class ‘bad boy’ Daichi.
In the Magical World, everyone can do magic. As part of a test of her Royal abilities, the princess, whose name is Erika, has to create a magical item and give it to her double on Earth . When the princess from the Magical World appears, she looks just like Himeko, except with long hair and a very pretty dress. Himeko is allowed to keep the magical item for one year, during which no one must discover its secret. The item that Erika creates is a very cute red ribbon. By wearing the ribbon, looking into her reflection in a mirror, and saying the magical words (“parallel, parallel, change me into…” to transform and “lellarap, lellarap” to turn back), Himeko can transform herself into anyone alive. Unfortunately, the ribbon has a time limit . Along with a ribbon, Erika gives Himeko a necklace that will alert Himeko when her time is running out. If she stays transformed beyond the end of the time limit, she will be stuck in her transformed body forever!
Himeko is a junior high school girl, so at first her immaturity leads her to misuse the ribbon. Fortunately, like most magical girls, Himeko has a talking pet who serves as her advisor in order to keep her from getting into too much trouble. Hime-chan’s adviser is her little stuffed lion named Pokota. Erika’s magic brought Pokota to life so he could watch over Himeko. However, unlike other talking pets who tend to behave like a wise adult, or babysitter, Pokota is more like a best friend. He usually takes Hime-chan’s side in things, and oftentimes his maturity level is not much higher than Himeko’s.
Hime-chan no Ribbon is © Mizusawa Megumi, Shuueisha, TV Tokyo, NAS.