My Take: The Dragon Prince

…Or “Hey, U.S. animation Studios, can we have more of this, PLEASE?”

Sorry for not posting the past couple of days. My husband came home from the road, and he hasn’t been home for a couple of weeks. So, I dropped off the face of the earth for a bit.

At the time I found The Dragon Prince series, Netflix was heavily marketing She-Ra and the Princesses of Power. (I will not talk about that show here. It frustrates me.) For some reason I cannot fathom, The Dragon Prince went under the radar and was not marketed much, if at all. The only way I found it was on Netflix itself and only under the animation tab, and that is a disservice to this wonderful show. It truly is.

If you want to see familial conflict, this show has it. If you want to see a solid story about two races and their hatred for one another, this show has it. If you want might, magic, wonder animation, colorful backdrops, this show has it. Most importantly, if you want an animated series that draws you in with an engaging story, solid characters and character arcs, and a solid plot, you found it, my friend.

The Artwork and Animation

I am not qualified to comment on the art style. I am NO artist, but I loved the character models, colors schemes, and they way the expressions were shown on the characters. The animation was smooth, not clunky, and flowed from one scene to the next.

From the Moon Phoenix (left) to the mounts and beyond, I was in awe of the imagination the artists had in making creatures unique to this universe. I found myself pausing just to admire the colors, shapes and overall art of the animals.

Each of the characters has their own style and color palette to make them stand out. From the regal red of King Harrow to the earth tones of Ellis and Ava, all the characters in the show have a style to match their very distinct personalities and stations.

The elves in this world are very unique and distinct from one another. They too have palettes and attitudes that reflect the element to which they are linked.

The Story

For those that have not seen it, I will not spoil it. It HAS to be watched and taken in to fully appreciate it. As a writer, I will break it down the best I can without giving away too much.
Elves and humans despise one another due to a human killing the dragon king and his egg. As the plot unfolds, you find yourself introduced to Callum and young Ezran, the princes of the main kingdom for the story. One thing leads to another and they find themselves on a journey, with a elf, to the magical realm they are forbidden from entering to try and prevent a war between elf and human-kind.

Along the way, you find out more about the main characters and other side characters as the fleshing out of said characters feels organic and not like it’s being spoon-fed to you. The world you are thrown into pulls you in and has you learning the more much the same way. There is no needless exposition. They show you in the way the characters interact with one another how the world works and how the different people and races interact.

Now, I am not saying their isn’t exposition. There is that in the form of flashbacks. This is to help further expand your knowledge of the lore and history the creators put into making this series. They too feel smooth in the telling and not shoe-horned into the overall story.

No character is wasted. Each has their own arc, however small. The relationships between family members feels genuine, well, until you get to the antagonist, but those relationships are also shown and not explained.
There are a couple of homosexual relationships, but the fact that the people are either gay or lesbian is not at the forefront. It’s natural and as-a-matter-of-fact. You are not reminded of their sexual orientation. They are treated as equals in this world.

The antagonist is not one dimensional. He does thirst for power, but in his hatred of the elves, he fells he is doing what is best for humanity. You watch his slow descent into complete darkness, and it’s satisfying. You want to hate him, but you can’t fully. He is arrogant and brash, but you understand his motivation.
He has two children of his own, which he tries to use as pawns while convincing them that he cares for them. He may very well love them, but you his manipulation tactics and how the children are in constant conflict with their feelings.

There are comedic scenes in the show, but it doesn’t break the flow of what is happening.

In Conclusion…

This animated series is a must for those into anime. It has something for adults as well as children. This is something I wish to see more of from other U.S. animation studios. Can I have more of this, please?

Until Next Time,

Anissa “Maddy” Walker

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