REVIEW: ‘Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle, Episode 12 – “Sleeping Princess of the Demon Castle”

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Sleepy Princess Episode 12

Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is one of many Fall 2020 anime adaptations airing weekly via Funimation. A slice of life meets high fantasy meets comedy anime, Sleepy Princess has been the dark horse of a season filled with lots of high-action titles. Instead of loads of action, Sleepy Princess has demonstrated just how funny an episodic, high-fantasy comedy series steeped in tropes can be. However, Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is at the end of its cour with its final episode airing December 22, 2020. As of this review, there’s new news about any OVAs or a second cour or season. That being said, let’s see what Sleepy Princess episode 12, “Sleeping Princess of the Demon Castle”, is all about.

Instead of being split into thirds, Sleepy Princess episode 12 has two distinct halves. The first half of Sleepy Princess episode 12 starts off, ironically, near Christmas. ‘Tis the season in both Gooderest and the Demon Realm! Deck the monstrous halls with boughs of holly! It’s the holiday season and Princess Syalis wants to write to Santa Claus and get her holiday wish! 

It’s hard to know if Syalis is on the Nice List or the Naughty List, given her bad habit of ending demons. Syalis certainly seems like she’d be number one on the Naughty List for sure! After all, taking down demons is still kind of bad…right? Still, it’s pretty sweet that Syalis still believes and is more than willing to hang her stocking by the window with yet another sleep-themed request. Her determination remains one of her most charming aspects, even as the series winds down. However, Demon King Twilight won’t have any holly jolly men in his castle, including Kris Kringle! Even worse, Twilight plans to prevent Princess Syalis’ from getting any messages to ol’ Saint Nick ahead of the holidays. Looks like any letters sent to the Demon Realm won’t be reaching the North Pole this year…or any year!

 It helps that Twilight knows that if Syalis really wants something, she’ll figure out a way to get it. That, or she’ll simply escape as she did for her blessed deluxe massage pillow. In fact, that’s what Twilight and the Ten Elders expect her to do. Yet when they snoop around and find the truth, the demons face a very different situation. Viewers can easily guess that actually, Syalis might just want something from home. By this point in the series, it’s more than clear that she probably isn’t homesick. Plus, the princess isn’t the kind of girl to plot some nefarious back at Goodereste’s castle. If anything, she’d be plotting the best way to get some more sleep. Syalis wouldn’t be planning a new way to escape the castle and return home! That being said, Syalis’ desire to return home is the main source of comedy in this first third. This is especially funny once the demon ventures back into the human realm and headfirst into more danger.

Much like Sleepy Princess episode 11, a lot of the comedy comes from trying to sneak around the human realm and eventually, get back to the demon keep. Moreso, it comes from the demons having to sneak around Syalis’ home. It’s genuinely funny, especially since we get to meet a major new character. Viewers also get to see a callback to Cubey, the succubus featured in Sleepy Princess episode 11, as well as lots of new minor characters in Goodereste’s castle. 

The back-half of Sleepy Princess episode 12 picks up right after Syalis’ escapades in the castle with an announcement that the Princess has returned. The only problem is… it’s not the Princess. In fact, it’s a far cry from Goodereste’s Princess because the girl on the balcony of the castle…is Cubey! Yet, real Princess or not, the entire nation of Goodereste turns out to see Syalis’ glorious return to the castle. It’s a unique mixture of painfully funny and deeply unsettling. You really feel for Cubey, a character that may have felt shoehorned into the series right at the end. Instead of falling flat, she leads to one of the most emotional -and comedic- moments in the show. Moreso, Cubey becomes a rather endearing -and pitiful- character.

Yet Princess Syalis is not far off. In fact, she’s right there to save the day, not with her scissors, but with her very genuine heart. In a scene that really gets to the heart of the series’ earnestness, Syalis sweeps in and steals the scene. Her actions aid the demons -including Demon King Twilight himself-  and let both Cubey and Princess Syalis escape back to the Demon Castle, and hopefully, into another season.

Sleepy Princess episode 12 is a bombastic end to a charming series about a captive Princess and the demons who come to adore her. The ending feels well earned and genuine, as do the relationships established between the characters over the past twelve episodes. Syalis is a standout lead especially when it comes to the many ways she tries to get good sleep. She’s not afraid to cut down a demon in the name of eight hours or more! Truly, Syalis has shown herself to be one of 2020’s most relatable heroines. 

Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is an easy recommendation, especially for fans of fantasy and comedy. This show is a perfect blend of both genres. In fact, Sleepy Princess is almost always funny. Even its weakest episodes still have a lot of merit, though sometimes, the jokes might not land just right for viewers. If you didn’t follow Sleepy Princess week by week during Fall 2020, I highly recommend watching it during the holidays, or at least before the end of the year. Light, enjoyable, and completely low-stakes, Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is a nice treat to help ease the woes of a year that’s been hard for many folks around the world. 

Its sincerity and genuinely delightful comedy make it a perfectly cozy series to end the year on. Even better, Sleepy Princess episode 12 is the perfect “Christmas” episode for anime fans who are looking to put some jingle in their jangle ahead of Christmas and New Years’. Plus, it’s a good taste for what to expect from Sleepy Princess’ manga, which is currently ongoing and licensed by Viz. As of the writing of this article, thirteen volumes have been released in English.  Sleepy Princess’s fourteenth volume set to release on April 13, 2021.

Ultimately, Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is the perfect series to binge ahead of Winter 2021’s packed season, and a lovely reminder that comedy series, when well done, can rise to become one of the best anime of an entire season. 

Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is streaming now on Funimation.

Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle Episode 12 - “Sleeping Princess of the Demon Castle”
  • 9/10
    Rating - 9/10


Ultimately, Sleepy Princess in the Demon Castle is the perfect series to binge ahead of Winter 2021’s packed season, and a lovely reminder that comedy series, when well done, can rise to become one of the best anime of an entire season. 

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