REVIEW: ‘Tropical-Rouge PreCure,’ Episode 9 – “Makeup is Magic? Get Tropical with Movie!”

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Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9

Last time on Tropical-Rouge PreCure, the members of the Tropical Club met up on a Saturday to make a bunch of delicious bento. However, when another Yarane-da came in the form of a giant, monstrous Shaved Ice Machine, things looked a bit grim for the girls, especially since they were hungry. Thankfully, their lunch boxes were there to save the day. Now, with full stomachs, we’re heading into Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9!

Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9, “Makeup is Magic? Get Tropical with Movie!” focuses on just that: a movie! Rather, a movie shoot happening during the next school vacation. Aozora Middle will be serving as the set. Even better, the film crew is recruiting students to be extras on set! Naturally, this becomes the next goal of the Tropical Club. They’re determined to become extras in the film…well, except for Minori and Asuka, who are a bit more level-headed. Still, this makes up the bulk of Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9.

Post-OP, Manatsu and the girls are heading home. Only instead of being at peace, Manatsu’s begging Asuka and Minori to join herself and Sango in being a part of the movie’s shoot. Even Laura is excited, though she seems to keep forgetting that she’s a mermaid, and in our world… those don’t exist. Or at least, don’t exist outside of myth.

However, the focus quickly shifts from Laura when a suspicious individual in a hat, sunglasses, and masks starts peeping around the school. Caught by Manatsu, the suspicious individual runs off…into a lamppost. Of course, the reveal that she’s Yuna Yamabe, a famous teen actor, isn’t a shock, though it’s a pleasant way to loop the Tropical Quartet into the movie shoot directly. In fact, the girls get roped in, even more, when they start helping Yuna train for her new role. Usually, Yuna plays the soothing character in the cast. However, this time Yuna’s playing the role of a villain, which is a far cry from her personal acting wheelhouse. There’s a lot of comedic moments between the girls, as well as plenty of foibles on Yuna’s part.

Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9 isn’t only about movies. It actually returns back to a conversation I’ve been interested in since the series started: make-up. This also plays into Yuna’s role as a villain-type character in the movie, and brings us back to something that I’m glad Tropical-Rouge Pretty Cure is finally starting to start a dialogue about. 

I think there’s something to be said about a children’s show talking about make-up. In fact, I think that the show has a generally positive view of girls and make-up. Tropical-Rouge Pretty Cure easily could have made make-up a joke, as many shows aimed at young girls so often do. Instead, this episode really shows how make-up can empower young girls to feel the way they want. In fact, it’s thanks to the power of make-up that both the Tropical Quartet and Yuna are able to overcome this week’s subplot and their troubles, respectively.

Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9 even likens wearing make-up to Cinderella’s glass slippers, which were just one part of why she found love in the end. Additionally, Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9 reinforces the fact that make-up is just one way for girls to feel good. There’s never an overwhelming vibe of, “You must wear makeup to be feminine!”. Instead, Tropical-Rouge Episode 9 really seems to be angling for a message of, “Make-up can be fun to play with and can empower you, but there’s other ways to be strong as well.” Hopefully, the show will keep that vibe all the way to the end.

Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9, and the series as a whole, aren’t always perfect in the conversation. In fact, the show has yet to really say something important about make-up and femininity. Unfortunately, this still isn’t a really in-depth exploration, which I do think Tropical-Rouge Pretty Cure is capable of having. I hope that we’ll get more to say about make-up culture and Japan as the show develops and make-up becomes more a part of the Tropical Quartet.

Still, I’m glad that it at least respected make-up as a form of power. It might come off as a trite to an adult, but for a young person, that could be a really impactful message. In fact, when the Tropical Quartet transforms, make-up literally becomes their battle armor. I can respect that viewpoint, even if I don’t have any desire to wear make-up myself.

In the end, I think Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9 has a good message tucked in between some good Tropical Quartet antics and another Yarane-da. On the surface, the message might seem simple, but I think it’s really important for young girls to be told that it’s okay to want to wear make-up and play around with it.

It’s just one of a billion ways to perform femininity without putting other ways of being feminine down. Ultimately, it’s really nice to see a children’s show side with femininity over making fun of girls for being “girly” in any way, shape, or form.

Tropical-Rouge! Pretty Cure is now streaming on Crunchyroll.

Rating: 8.5/10

Tropical-Rouge PreCure Episode 9 - “Makeup is Magic? Get Tropical with Movie!”
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TL;DR

It’s just one of a billion ways to perform femininity without putting other ways of being feminine down. Ultimately, it’s really nice to see a children’s show side with femininity over making fun of girls for being “girly” in any way, shape, or form.