Saaya Yakushiji (薬師寺さあや) is one of the five main cures in the series HUGtto! Pretty Cure. Saaya's alter ego is Cure Ange (キュアアンジュ Kyua Anju) and she is known as the Pretty Cure of Wisdom.
As a civilian, Saaya has long navy blue hair with her bangs being mostly in the middle. Part of it is held up in a small bun on the left side of her head and held in a light blue hairpiece. Her eyes are also blue. Her dress has slightly baggy light blue sleeves that reached her elbows with a light blue pinafore with light blue ruffles, a lavender sash tied to the right, and a cerulean layer beneath the skirt. She also wears blue high heels with light blue socks. At school, she often wears a pair of pink glasses.
As Cure Ange, her hair becomes longer and more layered and turns sky blue. Two strands hang in the front with golden beads decorating each end. Her headband is white and gold and resembles a nurse's cap and also has two feather-like decorations on each side with a golden gradient on each. Her tiara has a blue gem. Her eyes are now bright blue with thicker eyelashes and she also wears lipstick. She wears blue teardrop-shaped earrings. Her dress has a white and sky blue bodice with sheer light blue material covering the very top with a lace collar. The sleeves are also made of that same material and reach her elbows, with holes around the shoulders. She also wears a short white capelet. The skirt is white and light with blue with a slit on the left side and a ruffled longer section in the back and a light blue layer underneath. She also has a cerulean blue sash that ties to the left where her carrying pouch, accented with a white wing and two white feathers lined in gold. She wears short white feathery bracelets with cerulean bands around the wrists and light blue boots with cerulean toe tips.
In her Cheerful Style, her hair gains more volume and grows slightly longer. Her dress also becomes almost completely white, except for a sky blue frill on the upper part of the bodice, with feather-like trim lining the bottom and it opening in the front, revealing a white skirt with blue lining on the bottom and sky blue frills below that. The sash around her waist is now sky blue and is slightly longer. The carrying pouch for her PreHeart gains more feather-like protrusions and is now decorated with white and gold feathers. The sheer material near the neckline is now clear as opposed to it being blue with what appears to be a blue choker below the lace collar. Her sleeves are now longer and slightly puffier. She no longer wears bracelets, but the ends on her sleeves resemble them, with a sky blue band and white frill. The design on the toe tips of her boots is slightly more stylized with the top part flaring out like flower petals. She now also wears a short translucent veil over her head held by a gradient rainbow bow with a heart in the middle and white scalloped decorations hanging from it. The gold beads at the ends of her hair strands are slightly bigger, with the top part resembling butterfly wings. In her Mother Heart style, she also gains a pair of large translucent butterfly-like wings.
Saaya is a kind girl who is gentle and soft spoken like an angel towards anyone. Despite having been a famous child actor, she was once lost and uncertain of her own future until she realizes her hidden dream of becoming a doctor. She also has some peculiar interests, like a love for spicy foods and enthusiasm towards sets of tools.
In episode 14, it is revealed that she has a hidden competitive streak in spite of her kindness, trying to win over the affection of the babies in the daycare over Ruru.
Hana Nono, Homare Kagayaki - As fellow members of the Pretty Cure, the three have been shown to be great friends. Ready to cheer on each other at any given time, the they rely on each other for emotional support during times of hardship.
Ruru Amour - As fellow members of the Pretty Cure, they are good friends. Saaya and Ruru have been shown to have a heater rivalry with each other, usually on trivial matters such as taking care of children.
Emiru Aisaki - As fellow members of the Pretty Cure, they are good friends. Due to the age difference, Saaya serves as an older role model for Emiru.
Reira Yakushiji - Saaya's mother. Saaya is shown to greatly respect her mother, especially looking up to her acting and her actions as a loving parent. Reira can be quite strict to her daughter and is sometimes seen feeling insecure about the fact that Saaya is growing up quickly before her eyes. Nonetheless, the two share a loving bond.
Shuji Yakushiji - Saaya's father. They share a good father-daughter relationship. Shuji often cooks for Saaya, as Reira is usually not home due to her job.
Daigan - Formerly enemies, the two began to share a special bond after Saaya used her powers as Cure Ange to heal Daigan from an otherwise fatal wound.
Yakushiji (薬師寺) - Yaku (薬) means "medicine", Shi (師) means "expert" or "master", and Ji (寺) means "temple". Yakushi combined (薬師) also means "doctor". This could mean Yakushiji means "temple of doctors", which might be a reference to Saaya's desire to become a doctor and Cure Ange's healing powers.
Saaya (さあや) - Saaya is a given name, whose meaning is unclear since it's written in hiragana. Possible meanings of Saaya might be "blooming love" (咲愛), "true colour" (真彩), or "pure colour" (清彩).
Cure Ange comes from the French word ange meaning "Angel".
Meeting Hana and Becoming a Cure
In the first episode, Saaya is first seen in class when transfer student Hana Nono charges into the room, late for her self-introduction. After hearing the cries of a baby, Saaya meets Hana and Homare Kagayaki on the rooftop. Impressed by Hana's energy during her introduction, Saaya offers to show Hana around the school.
In the following episode, Saaya further interacts with Hana. Saaya demonstrates much maturity in her role as the class rep, and the two converse about the Pretty Cure and various other topics as Saaya writes the school newspaper.
After school, Saaya appears at the door of the tree house, drawn by the sound of Hugtan's tears as Hana frantically tries to calm her down. Saaya realizes that Hugtan is likely upset due to hunger, and after a quick internet search, learns how to prepare baby milk. Saaya reveals that she, like Hana, experiences a strange phenomenon where time stops for an instant with the cries of a certain baby. As Saaya calms Hugtan down with the finished bottle of milk, both Hana and Hariham Harry (hiding in a corner) are impressed. Hana compliments Saaya on her kindness, while Saaya believes that on the contrary, her kindness doesn't hold a candle to Hana's courage during her introduction. Hana then concludes that Saaya is courageous as well, as is required of someone to be kind to others. Hana cheers Saaya on as the two laugh.
When an Oshinaida appears nearby, Hana and Saaya rush to the scene. Hana reveals her identity as a Cure by transforming in front of Saaya, which shocks her. As Saaya looks on, concerned, she remembers Hana's cheers from before, which causes her to create a blue Mirai Crystals from her heart. Having found courage from within herself, Saaya transforms into the Pretty Cure of Wisdom, Cure Ange. She fends off the Oshimaida's attacks with Heart Feather!, and her analytical skills allow her to pinpoint the Oshimaida's weak points, lending to the Cures' victory. The sun sets as the two members of the Pretty Cure form a deeper bond.
Career as an Actress
In Episode 7, the girls learn that Saaya has a background as a child actor. Ichijou Ranze appears to challenge Saaya to a face-off in the upcoming auditions, angry that Saaya presumably has an easier career as an actress due to her celebrity actress mother, Reira Yakushiji. Later that day, Saaya returns home to look over her lines, where her father Shuji Yakushiji cheers her on.
The following day, Saaya rehearses her role in a nearby forest. Hana likens her performance to that of an angel, which makes her happy. However, Saaya expresses her anxiety performing in front of others, stemming from the pressure exerted by those who expect her to follow in her mother's footsteps. Despite having a celebrity actress as a mother, Saaya is unsure if acting is the right path for her. Hana and Homare encourage Saaya to give the audition a try, as they'll be there for her, which cheers up Saaya.
On the day of the audition, Saaya becomes more anxious as her turn creeps closer. However, Hana and Homare make sure she doesn't feel this way by constantly bringing her words of encouragement. This gives Saaya the courage to deliver a stunning rendition of her role, despite failing to recite the lines word for word. At the end of the day, Saaya didn't secure the role, but she is glad that she chose to audition.
In Episode 26, it is seen that Saaya is beginning to gain popularity as an actress, but she wants to know what her mother thinks of her career. To do so, Saaya and the others decide to visit a television studio that is currently filming a drama in which Saaya's mother is starring. After witnessing Reira perform in a scene, Saaya decides to approach her: what does she think of Saaya following in her footsteps? Reira simply states, the road of acting is not Saaya's only path, before leaving her alone.
While contemplating this, Saaya meets some of her mother's friends that would take care of Saaya as a baby while her mother was filming. They recount a story where her mother, with baby Saaya in her arms, would come to the studio begging for a role. They state that she was only able to become so successful because of everyone who supported her. When Saaya sees her mother meticulously preparing for her current role, she recalls the times they had spent together. As a child, Saaya had always cheered for her mother from in front of the television screen, which causes her to realize that her desire is to act together with her mother, if only for once, even if she doesn't choose to walk the path of an actress. At the end of the episode, Saaya speaks this desire to her mother, eager to match her mother at the same heights.
Deciding to Become a Doctor
In Episode 23, Daigan from the Criasu Corporation was heavily wounded by Doctor Traum. As Cure Ange, Saaya attempted to use her powers to heal him. In the following episode, it was revealed that Daigan had survived thanks to her efforts, bringing relief to Saaya.
In Episode 27, the cast's teacher, Uchifuji-sensei, reveals that his wife, Inoue Yuka, is expecting a child. When Yuka goes into labor in great pain, Saaya accompanies her to the hospital. There, Dr. Maki assists Yuka in successfully delivering the child. Witnessing the birth of this new life, Saaya is touched. In particular, Dr. Maki states that the wonderful aspect of her job as a obstetrician is bringing each baby into the world. These words resonate with Saaya.
In Episode 35, Saaya and the others visit the hospital where Dr. Maki works. They decide to volunteer in different branches across the hospital, with Saaya and Ruru taking part in the obstetrics branch. There, Saaya meets a young girl named Kawakami Aya. Aya's mother is expecting another child soon and is currently hospitalized in the same hospital. Saaya and Aya spend time with each other, eventually leading to a conversation about Aya's mother. It is here that Aya reveals that she doesn't want her mother to have another child, fearing that the mother whom she loves would no longer belong to her. As Aya breaks down into tears, Saaya pulls Aya into an embrace, stating that Aya's mother would love child just as much as Aya, equally. Aya becomes more cheerful, and at the end of the episode, happily welcomes the new child. As the cast leaves the hospital, Saaya remarks on the wonderfulness of being a doctor.
In Episode 44, Saaya finally gets the chance to act with her mother. Initially, Saaya has trouble delivering her lines with conviction, as she had realized that she wants to pursue the path of a doctor, not an actress. After speaking with Daigan, who Saaya had healed before, and Dr. Maki, who reveals that even she was never absolutely certain with her career path, Saaya is determined to break speak the truth to everyone. Saaya reveals to her mother that rather than following her footsteps, she wants to become a doctor. Although her mother Reira initially appears to be happy for Saaya, it becomes evident that she has difficulty accepting this. This causes her to be turned into an Oshimaida by Listol. As the Oshimaida wrecks havoc, Saaya enters its body to confront her mother. Reira reveals she feels Saaya is growing up too quickly, which causes her to have a hard time. Saaya states that she is grateful for the moment she had shared with Reira through acting; they have allowed her to realize her dream of being a doctor. Saaya wants to bring joy to others through her practice of medicine, the same way Reira brings joy to others through acting. The two share a tearful embrace before Saaya exits the Oshimaida, which is then purified. As the episode comes to an end, the two finish their parts, with Reira warning Saaya of the hardships to come and Saaya ready to overcome them.
Min'na wo Iyasu! Chie no Purikyua! Kyua Anju!
Cure Ange (キュアアンジュ Kyua Anju) is the Pretty Cure alter ego of Saaya. In order to transform, she needs the PreHeart and her Mirai Crysal.
Heart Kiratto! (ハートキラっと! Hāto Kiratto!)
Saaya holds her PreHeart in its phone mode and inserts her Mirai Crystal onto the device while saying "Mirai Crystal!". She then flips the device into its heart mode as the screen flashes on with a white heart that emits white light. As she says "Heart Kiratto!", she waves her PreHeart gently around until the light turns blue. Covered in a blue glow, she presses the red heart on the PreHeart while saying "Hagyuu~" until blue streams of light fly out to create her dress, sash, arm warmers and boots. She presses the red heart again while saying "Gyuu~" to change her hair length and colour as well as adding her hair accessories. She presses the red heart for the final time to allow her earrings, tiara and cape to appear. She places her PreHeart in its carry bag on her waist and says her introduction phrase while reaching to the heavens before kneeling to the ground to say her name as she poses.
- Heart Feather! (ハート・フェザー！ Hāto Fezā!) is Cure Ange's main attack, which she primarily uses as a shield. It requires the PreHeart and the Mirai Crystal Blue or Mirai Crystal Navy. She first uses it in episode 2.
- Trinity Concert (トリニティ・コンサート Toriniti Konsāto) is an attack Cure Ange performs alongside Cures Yell and Étoile to purify the enemy. It requires the Cures' Melody Swords and the Mirai Crystals Rose, Navy, and Orange. She first performed it with her teammates in episode 11.
- Feather Blast (フェザー・ブラスト Fezā Burasto) is Cure Ange's secondary attack that she performs to deflect any attack that comes her or her teammates' way. It requires the Ange Harp and the Mirai Crystal Navy. She first performed it in episode 12.
In episode 23, it is revealed that she also has the ability to heal others.
- Cheerful Attack (チアフル・アタック Chiafuru Atakku) is a group attack that she, Yell, Étoile, Macherie, Amour, and Hugtan can perform together. The attack transforms them into their Cheerful Styles and requires the Memorial Cure Clock and Mirai Crystal Cheerful. It was first performed in episode 31.
- All ・For・You! (オールフォーユー！ Ōru Fō Yū!) is the second group attack that she performs with Yell, Étoile, Macherie, and Amour. It requires the Mirai Braces, as well as the powers of all the Pretty Cures in the franchise. It was performed for the first and only time in episode 37.
- Tomorrow With Everyone (みんなでトゥモロー！ Min'na de Tumorō!) is the third group attack that she, Yell, Étoile, Macherie, Amour, and Hugtan can perform by summoning Mother Heart. The attack transforms them into their Mother Heart Styles and requires the Memorial Cure Clock, Mirai Crystal Mother Heart, and Mirai Braces. It was first performed in episode 39.
Saaya's voice actor, Hon'izumi Rina has participated in several image songs for the character she voices. Many of them include duets with Hikisaka Rie, who voices Nono Hana, Ogura Yui, who voices Kagayaki Homare, Tamura Nao, who voices Aisaki Emiru, and Tamura Yukari, who voices Ruru Amour.
- Wings of an Image
- HUGtto! Future☆Dreamer (Along with Hikisaka Rie and Ogura Yui)
- A Miracle Called Friendship (Along with Ogura Yui)
- It's Always Be Here (Along with Hikisaka Rie and Ogura Yui)
- HUGtto! Future☆Dreamer (5 PRECURE Ver.) (Along with Hikisaka Rie, Ogura Yui, Tamura Nao and Tamura Yukari)
- HUGtto! YELL FOR YOU (Along with Hikisaka Rie, Ogura Yui, Tamura Nao and Tamura Yukari)
- Saaya's birthday is on June 10th, making her star sign Gemini.
- It was revealed in episode 36 that Saaya is a great fan of Urara Kasugano.
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