Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle (Sleepy Princess) is one of many Fall 2020 anime adaptations beefing up the roster this year. Billed as a slice of life, high fantasy comedy, Sleepy Princess mixes episodic antics with an overarching story of a damsel in distress that upends every trope, all while barely keeping its protagonist princess in check. In episode 2, Princess Syalis defeated her greatest foe to date: mosquitos. Worse, she faced mosquito bites. Quickly, Syalis stormed the castle, literally cutting down any of the Demon King’s denizens that dared get in her way. What will she face in episode 3?
Well, spoiler: it’s her on-going desire for a good eight hours of sleep.
Sleepy Princess episode 3, “The Princess and Forbidden Knowledge” kicks off with Princess Syalis hankering for sleep. Out of options and worn out from her on-going sleep deprivation Syalis does what anyone would do. She heads to the library to find a boring book to put her to sleep. When that fails to be the cure she needs Syalis gives up. However, in true Syalis fashion, things quickly go belly-up once the Princess realizes she’s been reading a pretty high-level grimoire that’s draining all of her MP. Unable to stand, she results to rolling down the staircase, quickly wreaking havoc on the library in her unchecked haste to just get some sleep.
Like most situations, Syalis doesn’t learn any kind of lesson. Instead, she sinks deeper into trouble, ultimately releasing Alazif, the guardian spirit of a grimoire under serious lock and key. Irritated, Princess Syalis immediately tries to shove the guardian spirit back inside the book. When that doesn’t work, she hilariously demands a healing potion mixed with soda and a copy of Shonen Sunday, the latter being a tongue-in-cheek joke about the manga magazine that Sleepy Princess currently runs chapters in Japan.
When all else fails, she asks the guardian spirit to help her sleep. Unknowingly, the spirit decides to help Syalis out by offering up a sleep spell that consumes massive amounts of MP. Immediately, Syalis casts the spell on the entire Demon Castle, Demon King, and all. Instantly, all of the denizens of the castle succumb to Syalis’ spell, rendering the forces of the dark Demon King. All except Princess Syalis.
Just like previous episodes, the comedy comes from Syalis antics, which are still really, really funny. As of this episode, the plot is still “Princess Syalis causes a whole lot of trouble in the Demon Castle”. However, the story and animation are good enough that the show remains incredibly likable. Even the repetition of Syalis’ antics are hard to dislike, especially if you like well-time comedy.
However, fans who were only doing a three-episode watch might find themselves ready to drop Sleepy Princess this season, especially since there are dozens of titles that are getting quite plotty. Moreso, fans who are curious about Sir Dawner and his companion heroes will find themselves left wanting this episode as the heroes get the most skint of cameos at the beginning of the second half of episode three.
Yet finally, Syalis comes face to face with the Demon King himself. What does she say? Well…she asks him to massage a pressure point on her back. Twilight is only one of many demons Syalis has asked to “touch” her during this part. Unfortunately, it’s a joke that feels entirely wrong. So far, the show has been quite respectful towards Syalis and her more youthful appearance. Because of that, this gag just feels gross.
Thankfully, the joke is ultimately played for humor with a mild dose of sexualization on Syalis’ behalf as the demons in the castle don’t quite understand why she wants them to touch her. Thankfully, Sleepy Princess episode 3 doesn’t go too hard nor too far: the show reacts, then lets up and moves on from the joke.
Ultimately, Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle remains a charmingly funny series that’s utterly relatable. After all, who hasn’t slipped past the Demon King’s guards in order to read a boring book just to get some sleep? Who hasn’t rolled down some stairs after having all of their MP drained? I know I have…maybe.
The “good fun” nature of the series is quite a delight. While viewers might want a bit more plot upfront, it looks like that will come later. Ultimately, Sleepy Princess episode 3 is still the beginning of a bigger story: viewers will have to wait and see what happens next.
New episodes of Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle stream on Funimation every Tuesday.
Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle Episode 3 - “The Princess and Forbidden Knowledge”
- Rating - 8/108/10
Mercedez Clewis is a Queer Blerd who wears many hats. In addition to being a writer, she’s also a freelance transcriptionis and a localization editor and QA. She’s also really into visual novels, iyashikei/healing anime, and anything with magical girls in it.
You can follow her work as a professional Blerd at Backlit Pixels or keep up with her day to day life on Twitter.