Otaku USA Magazine
Excited for the Barbie Movie? Dress up with These Darling Anime

Need your Barbie fix now? Try these darling dress-up titles!

The long-awaited Barbie movie trailer hit today, and it’s got us excited to join the legend in her pastel world! But it’ll still be a while ’til the film drops. What to do ’til then? Check out some other darling doll- and dress-up-themed series in the meantime!

We’ve picked a handful of anime, old and new, that give us those fashion doll vibes. Sometimes literally, other times metaphorically. While we wait for the new movie, dive into these aesthetically pleasing shows!


Super Doll Licca-chan

Super Doll Licca-chan

Licca-chan is Barbie’s Japanese counterpart. Launched in 1967, the fashion doll is significantly younger than her American cousin at 11 years old. And in 1998, she got her very own magical girl series!

Super Doll Licca-chan stars third grader Licca Kayama, who discovers she’s the princess of the Doll Kingdom. This makes her a target for the evil Dr. Scarecrow. Fortunately, Licca’s grandmother gives her a set of dolls who can grow to human size and protect her as Doll Knights. The show is a bit hard to find now, sadly, but worth a casual watch if you happen to find it.


Rozen Maiden

Rozen Maiden

Barbie has lots of other doll friends… but what if they had to fight each other? That’s (sort of) the plot of Rozen Maidenbased on the supernatural Gothic fantasy manga by Peach-Pit. The dolls of the series were all created by the doll maker Rozen, who gifted each of them with a gem granting them sentience. His goal? To create the perfect doll, also known as Alice.

This led to the Alice Game. To become Alice, a doll must make a contract with a human master and battle the other six dolls for their gems. The anime has four seasons total, some of which you can still watch online.


My Dress-Up Darling

My Dress-Up Darling

This list’s Barbie inspo isn’t limited to just dolls! My Dress-Up Darling does indeed feature dolls—and a doll-maker, Wakana. But his model isn’t a hinata doll. It’s Marin, a gorgeous classmate who wants to express her love of her favorite characters through cosplay. She doesn’t have the talent to make the costumes, but Wakana does.

What results is a perfect partnership. Wakana can flex his dressmaking skills, and Marin can embody her fictional faves. And yes, of course there’s a budding romance! This series has won hearts ever since the manga debuted. So if it’s passed you by until now, it’s a great time to get on board!

Speaking of romance, check out one of the winter season’s cutest rom-coms!

Kara Dennison

Kara Dennison is a writer, editor, and presenter with bylines at Crunchyroll, Sci-Fi Magazine, Sartorial Geek, and many others. She is a contributor to the celebrated Black Archive line, with many other books, short stories, and critical works to her name.