When a lookalike princess arrives in the same city, can you spot the plot points in three notes or less?
What They Say:
In Place of the Princess
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Milky Holmes has certainly found its own offbeat style of humor and pacing over the course of the first several episodes so you know pretty much what to expect with the rest of it. It's going to be odd, make little sense and abuses a bunch of annoying characters in ways that can leave you groaning in displeasure. Yet at the same time it manages to surprising parodies (yes, I'm still feeling stupidly happy about the Nasuicaa one) and it really surprises with how sexual it gets in the looks of the characters, positions and the humor when you least expect it. It's not a slutty show, but for something that looked like a kids show at first, it goes in very unexpected directions.
This episode brings us the foreign princess from the Marlow Kingdom who has come to town and lo and behold, she's an identical lookalike to Sheryl. And even worse for everyone involved, the princess knows all about Sheryl and her incredible reputation for being able to solve everything. Of course, it's hard to really reconcile that fact with the reality of the previous five episodes where the Sheryl we know is pretty much incapable of just about anything without her Toy, nor does she come across as someone who would have the reputation she has worldwide. Sheryl being who she is though after meeting her, agrees to the role swap so that Clara can go and enjoy something of an everyday life for a little bit since she's so restrained due to her position.
Any show that deals with an exploration of two lives is going to have a lot of familiar themes. Sheryl really gets into the big lifestyle with huge amounts of food and people waiting on her hand and foot. Clara enjoys the life of near poverty well by having friends and getting to go and do things she normally can't. And, also not unexpected, there are dark sides to each of them. It's easy to ignore Clara's discoveries though because you get to see what Sheryl goes through with her 'husband to be' by finding out that he's all about the bondage, right down to the chains and whips and even some fun with wax. Seriously, once you get to those couple of scenes, the rest of it really doesn't matter. It peaks there in absurdity of situation since the guy is in his thirties and Clara is obviously, well, not. There is still some fun to have as Clara does eventually reveal to Sheryl's friends who she really is, since they didn't have a clue, but it's all kind of weak after that even if oddly fun.
Role swapping stories have a very standard pattern to them and Tantei Opera Milky Holmes doesn't really deviate from that for the most part. It's the accents that matter here in how it treats the characters with what's going on in their lives and the surprises are rather in tune with the show so far. It takes it in unexpected directions but you have to admit it feels right based on some of the strangely sexual inclusions of past episodes and they do take the role Sheryl has to take on further than you might expect, but it manages to defy expectations and it made me laugh overall. Milky Holmes has a really odd sense about itself that has been largely off-putting for much of its run so far, but everything here manages to work surprisingly well and it left me laughing and smiling. And feeling just a little bit guilty for doing so.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Sony KDS-R70XBR2 70" LCoS 1080P HDTV, Dell 10.1 Netbook via HDMI set to 1080p, Onkyo TX-SR605 Receiver and Panasonic SB-TP20S Multi-Channel Speaker System With 100-Watt Subwoofer.