Reccomendation in 5 Reasons: Madoka Magica (Show)

madoka magica group

Puella Magi Madoka Magica came out with one season of 12 episodes and became popular in 2011.  There have been three movies, two that recap the show and the third which continues it. In light of having viewed the third movie recently, I thought it would be fitting to explain my adoration for the original series. I know that many anime fans have already seen this show, and it might seem silly to make an effort for a slightly less spoiler-laden post about it, but this is simply how I’ve decided to do it.

Keeping it short and sweet, here we go!

1) Concise Series

Madoka Magica

I think that Puella Magi Madoka Magica had a perfect run length of 12 episodes at about 24 minutes each (including opening and end credits which you might not watch every time). It really isn’t that much of a commitment, and if you’re not hooked by the end of the infamous episode 3, when things start to getting good, clearly it just isn’t your type of show and you haven’t spent long giving it a shot. With 12 episodes there are enough episodes for a long marathon or two shorter ones. If you get into this show, you will stay intrigued because the plot moves quickly with pretty much no filler. In my opinion it has a proper, fitting end (in the Anime at least, I don’t really read manga). The third movie does continue the story, and it does wrap up a few questions, but, honestly, the original series felt complete to me before I saw the movie.

2) Art/Animation

As with most really good anime/manga, the art is simply incredible and speaks for itself but I’ll go on praising it just a tiny bit anyway. The concepts for the characters and their attacks are top notch, but the show truly shines in the more surreal scenes and the animation of the fights. It’s just all so beautiful, even when its intentionally grotesque or dark!

3) Good Round Characters

madoka magica2

It isn’t to say that many anime shows don’t have round characters, most of my favorites do, but it is a major plus when I can put this down on a list of reasons why I enjoy a show. The main characters of this show go beyond the typical ‘hair color is personality’ standby of Anime even though certain characters do fit some of their assumed traits. All these main characters have character strengths and flaws and are put in situations that make them explore the moral grey areas helps them grow and also helps you to get more emotionally invested in them.

4) Counter to most other ‘Magical Girl’ shows

madoka magica mami

puella_magi_madoka_magica-08-kyubey-incubator-shaft_head_turn

The show comes off as a typical ‘magical girl anime’ like Sailor Moon, but, unlike most of those shows it becomes very dark and thought provoking (going back to those moral grey areas). The concept of hope and despair having to be in balance runs contrary message of cutesy Magical Girl shows which focus on good overcoming evil. Also this relates back to the ‘hair color is personality’ statement in the previous point because Sailor Moon was one of the shows that helped nail down the association between colors and personality traits. Also twisting around the concept of the ‘cute companion animal’ is an aspect of the show which I really enjoyed.

5) People who normally only watch American TV will enjoy it too if they give it a chance!

madoka magica

After I first saw the show in 2011 I was trying to get all my friends to watch it, and I had one of my friends who hasn’t watched any anime sit down and view the concise 12 episode series- and she really liked it! (Honestly though, I think that most people who aren’t into anime could be if they found the right niche of shows that is similar enough to what they already watch.)

The Anime shows I Would NOT Want to Live in

“What if Pokemon were real?” Is a question that I hear tossed around a lot. The replies range from unicorns-and-rainbows happiness to hilariously destructive scenes.

"if Pokemon were real" by Inkydragon of DeviantA

“if Pokemon were real” by Inkydragon of DeviantA

Wanting to live in the universe of your favorite show is a common thread of discussion in any fandom, so it would make sense that over the years many people have asked me what Anime I would want to live in, if given the choice. There are plenty of good options, like Free! Iwatobi Swim Club where drowning-but-always-recovering is the only danger and not much could really go wrong like in the Pokemon scenario.

I find it much more interesting to focus on the question of “What anime would suck the most to live in?”. It reminds me of the rather new adage “I wouldn’t want to live in the Hunger Games universe NOPE NOPE NOPE”.

hunger games

So here is my list of the anime shows I like to watch but would never want to actually live in because of the near-certainty of a horrible death.

Btooom! – First off, you’re trapped on a deserted island with limited rations. Then you’re told to kill other people with miniature bombs to gain your freedom as they also try to hunt you down the same way? Fun to watch as an Anime, no really fun in practice. Statistically you would probably get blown up. Not to mention that this universe also implies a high possibility of rape, or the fact that this little psycho is on the island with you.

Kira Kosuke, Btooom!

Kira Kosuke from Btooom!

Dangan Ronpa – It’s another trapped-somewhere and kill-or-be-killed situation! Except this time with a twist, if you get away with murder for long enough you’ll be let go, but if you get caught you die. The participants are all high schoolers, and all the blood is PINK!

Junko Enoshima from Dangan Ronpa
Junko Enoshima from Dangan Ronpa

Attack on Titan – 3d Maneuver Gear would be super sweet to swing around on, but really, so many people get eaten by Titans, you would probably meet a very grisly end like many of the named characters.

Eren Jaeger from Attack on Titan

Eren Jaeger from Attack on Titan using 3d Maneuver Gear

Attack on Titan

Your likely death if you lived in the Attack on Titan universe

Madoka Magica – It would be pretty awesome to get a wish granted, be Magical Girl and to have all those Magical Girl powers. But the reality of the how the Witches are created would result in a really un-fun universe to live in.

The Witch Charlotte from Madoka Magica

The Witch Charlotte from Madoka Magica

 

Closing note:

Future Diary, similar to Btooom! and Dangan Ronpa, is another a murder-elimination game, and another universe I wouldn’t want to live in. But living in the Future Diary universe would be a bit less horrible than Btooom! or Dangan Ronpa in my personal opinion, because the magic involved in the Future Diary premise would make it a little bit more fun and also make you feel as if you really could win. Part of the point of Dangan Ronpa is feeling despair, and the same with Madoka Magica. The feeling of being hopeless in your outcome is important and if I was in the Future Diary universe I wouldn’t be in despair since I would like to hope that my Future Diary’s specific power would help me win. Sooooooo, anyway, I didn’t really feel like Future Diary deserved as much a place on this list as the others, but it wouldn’t be fun and desirable to me to live in that universe, hence why it is mentioned down here- mostly because it IS another murder-elimination game and I’d like to think that being in one of those would generally suck.

 

13 Anime Gifs for Halloween

Gasai Yuno, Future Diary

Gasai Yuno, Future Diary

Readers seem to like my GIF lists, so I searched around for GIFs that covered the broad spectrum of Halloween-related things- meaning that I tried hard not to make all of them gory!

Anime recommended by me will have a ☆ next to them and ones that are from my 6 Anime to watch at Halloween post will have  ☆☆.

1) Blair firing her Halloween Cannon at Maka, from Soul Eater ( ☆ )

2) OMG SOMETHING SHADOWY IS RUNNING TOWARDS ME from Yami Shibai (which I never heard of until just now but it is a collection of  horror shorts based on Japanese legends- and it seems really freaky)

3) Shark attack- on land? from Gyo: Tokyo Fish Attack (which I haven’t seen but it is an OVA so its a one-shot of 70 minutes, mixed reactions in the reviews I’ve skimmed)

4) SPOILER FOR Another! Lots of blood… from Another ( ☆☆ )

5) All this pink blood really makes me laugh! from Dangan Ronpa: The Animation ( ☆ Yes this is a show where all the blood is neon pink! From what I gather it was for censorship reasons from the game it is based off of due to the Japanese game rating system.)

6) Monobear seems cute but is bleeping scary- also from Dangan Ronpa: The Animation ( ☆ )

7) Just like Monobear, Kyubey is was creepier in context! from Puella Magi Madoka Magica ( ☆ )

8) A big Titian Fight from Attack on Titian ( ☆ )

9) Head gets grabbed annnd yoink! from Blood+ ( ☆☆ )

10) Really super bloody experiment scene from Shiki  ( ☆☆ )

11) Hand up to the moon from Future Diary ( ☆ )

12) What is that-? Gasai Yuno and Yuki, again from Future Diary  ( ☆ )

13) SPOILERS FOR Future Diary- Gasai Yuno’s Horrifying bloody flashback which is, again, from Future Diary ( ☆ )