Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child

Happily Ever After is an animated series that ran from 1995 to 2000 and featured re-tellings of famous fairytales with modern or cultural twists, many of them ingenious. In this show's episode on The Little Mermaid, the setting is placed in East Asia, and as far as I can tell, the merfolk are Korean, the Prince is Chinese, and the Other Princess is Japanese. (I could be wrong, feel free to let me know!)

The little mermaid's name is Mija, and she's the youngest daughter of King Young-Jin of the underwater kingdom. Mija is bubbly and excitable, and the episode starts with the celebration of her 15th birthday. The only present she asks for is the chance to visit the surface. Mija's starfish sidekick, Nuri, doesn't approve, but her father gives Mija his blessings to visit the world above.

It's a light-hearted retelling that stays true to the series' title (i.e. HAPPILY ever after) so it skips over the spiritual aspects of the story to focus on Mija's cheerfulness and enthusiasm, which in this case is almost perfectly mirrored by the cheerfulness and enthusiasn of Prince Chow-Yun. This particular pair are meant to be, so much so that Princess Michiko, the rival, is barely present in the story.

CAST
TIA CARRERE as Mija
TIM LOUINIBOS as Chow-Yun
GEDDE WATANABE as Nuri
CARY-HIROYUKI TAGAWA as King Young-Jin
MARGARET CHO as Hul Muh Ni
JEANNE MORI as Michiko
BRIAN TOUCHI as Turtle Photographer/Tsui
KAREN LEW as Mi Kyung
HEIDI AHN as Mi-Jin
AMY HILL as Ming

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