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Upon first glance, this little known Japanese series from the 80s might not seem like anything more than a collection of poor low-budget fairy tale adaptations. Grimm's' Masterpiece Theater, however, is a nice surprise. The show's re-tellings of fairy and folk tales are entertaining without feeling rushed or childish, and while they lack the big numbers and beautiful animation Disney adaptations are endowed with, they hold up well enough, never feeling like cheap rip-offs of previous Disney versions.
The episodes cover a wide variety of fairy tales, from familiar stories such as Rapunzel and Cinderella, to less known yarns such as The Seven Swans. While child-friendly, the stories are never dumbed down or clogged with pop culture references and fart jokes. The stories also take few cues from earlier Disney adaptations, making them quite unique.
As to be expected in a low-budget series, the animation is very limited, however, the appealing character designs make up for it with their simplicity and charm. The backgrounds are also quite pleasant to look at.
As for the voice acting and music, they're passable. At points, the actors have to belt out their lines at Mach speed in order to get the lip sync right. The music is forgettable and reused in every episode, but that's more of a nitpick than an actual issue in this case. All in all, this is an entertaining little gem for children. It's nothing out of this world, but it's pretty good nonetheless and strides ahead of the televised garbage kids are exposed to these days.
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