Tag: Madoka Magica

Magia Record Episode 3

Magia Record Episode 3

Sorry For Making You My Friend

Madoka Magica: Magia Record episode 3 doesn’t quite pick up where episode 2 left off, and I was a bit disappointed by that. The ending of the previous episode with the chain monsters surrounding Kaede made for some great suspense, and then this episode failed to follow through on it.

I mean, we didn’t even get to see how Kaede was taken away. What did that look like? Only Rena was able to see the chain monsters, so we can assume she witnessed them grabbing and dragging Kaede away. But what about for everyone else who couldn’t see them? What about for Kaede herself?

Rena Minami from the anime series Madoka Magica: Magia Record
Rena Minami

Also, while the girls did defeat the monster which kidnapped Kaede, it didn’t really feel like a big deal. Now, this is partly because, as is hinted later on in the episode, that monster wasn’t their real enemy. But the other reason it felt this way is because there didn’t actually appear to be anything at stake.

Yes, Kaede’s life was supposedly on the line, but think about what the girls found once they made their way into the labyrinth. Kaede was perfectly fine and had simply been waiting for them. Further, with five magical girls teaming up, defeating the monster was no big deal.

I just hope that going forward this side story follows through with the suspense it builds in meaningful ways.

The Coordinator

Near the beginning of the episode, right before we’re formally introduced to Yachiyo Nanami, the unnamed magical girl from episode 1, we meet the “Coordinator.” I’d assume that the Coordinator is a magical girl in her own right, but we don’t actually know that for certain yet.

What we do know is that she plays the role of doctor and arbitrator for the various magical girls throughout Kamihama City. And when we first see her, she’s working with another magical girl, who isn’t named just yet, but will probably show up again later on in the series (or maybe just in the mobile game).

But while facilitating meetings between magical girls is one of her jobs, her more important job it seems is to “upgrade” them. I haven’t played the Magia Record mobile game, but her character seems to be kind of like Da Vinci from Fate/Grand Order — the shop keeper who helps you upgrade your servants.

I think if this anime wasn’t based on a mobile game, we wouldn’t be seeing a character like the Coordinator. Characters like that make sense in the context of games, but they don’t exactly translate well into anime format.

And evidence of this can be seen by the fact that we don’t really stick around with her for long. We’re introduced to her by her title, she gives a little explanation of what her role is, and then she upgrades Iroha’s soul gem.

But we don’t actually know if upgrading her soul gem did anything meaningful for the plot. It just happened because it’s what happens in the game when you want to upgrade a character, I guess.

Magical Girl Transformations

After the girls stop at the Coordinator’s hideout and Yachiyo joins their party, we get to witness their magical girl transformations for the first time. I don’t believe we had even seen Iroha’s full transformation before now. So, let’s go through them in order.

First up we have Yachiyo who is actually the water-based magical girl. I previously thought Rena was the water-based one because she uses a trident and her other similarities to Sayaka Miki. Additionally, the rest of Yachiyo’s outfit gives off a more celestial vibe with the stars — so water was unexpected.

Yachiyo Nanami from the anime series Madoka Magica: Magia Record
Yachiyo Nanami

Momoko is the fire-based magical girl, which I think last week I said might make sense for Kaede. We also see that she’s a fighter based on her movements during her transformation, and this is interesting given the giant sword she uses. You’d think she’d be more of a brawler with that animation.

Rena, as I mentioned, isn’t the water-based magical girl of the group. Instead, she’s the lightning-based one, which is just further evidence for her being the best girl. Sailor Jupiter was always my favorite of the original five Sailor Scouts, and she too is the lightning one.

Additionally, we see that Rena’s transformation (and magic she uses during the fight) is based on mirrors. This likely ties into her ability to transform into other people because either she hates what she sees when she looks in the mirror, or she’s trying to be a reflection of other people.

And, finally we have Iroha’s transformation which has a lot of strange things going on. I don’t even know how to comment on most of it yet, but something tells me the part where she’s chasing after her cloak is going to be very important.

The Chain Monster

While we don’t get to see Kaede’s magical girl transformation yet, we do get to see her use some magic (sort of) while fighting against what I’m going to assume was the chain monster. And, as I sort of predicted last week, it has to do with plants.

We don’t actually see Kaede use magic by herself, but we do see her use some tag team magic with Rena — something which seems to be common among Kamihama city magical girls. Their combined attack involves both mirrors and plants, so we can assume the plant part is Kaede’s.

But, moving on to the chain monster itself, while it does take the form of staircases leading up to a giant bell, it uses chains to fight. And that’s what I’m basing my assumption that this was the chain monster on.

However, we also know that there’s a witch known as the chain witch — and up until now it was unclear whether or not she and the chain monster were one and the same. At this point in time, I’m going to say that they are not the same, and that the chain witch controls the chain monster.

I said that same thing last week as well, but now we have a little bit more evidence pointing to that being the case. For starters, no witch name was displayed when the chain monster was revealed. All witches have their names displayed when they’re first encountered, and that didn’t happen this time — implying this wasn’t a witch.

Further, after its defeat, it’s revealed that it did not drop a grief seed — another sign that it wasn’t truly a witch. Could it be a wraith?

Mami Tomoe is on the Case!

If you’re someone who bails out of an episode as soon as the end credits begin, then you’ll have missed out on a lot of important information in a whole bunch of anime. That’s just one reason I watch through the EDs of anime every time.

The post-credits scene for this episode showcased Mami and Kyubey having a discussion about what’s going on in Kamihama city.

Although I’ve since updated my review of episode 1, I originally falsely claimed that Kamihama was where the main Madoka Magica anime took place. CNTH corrected me in a comment to say that Mitakihara was the name of the original city where Madoka, Sayaka, Homura, Kyouko, and Mami are located.

Mami Tomoe from the anime series Madoka Magica: Magia Record
Mami Tomoe

So, what’s Mami doing in Kamihama? Well, technically she’s not in Kamihama yet, but she’s been summoned there by Kyubey to figure out just what’s going on in the city. We were previously told that there’s no Kyubey in the city, and now we know why — when he tries to enter the city, it’s as if his own soul is pulled out.

Kyubey also informs us (and Mami) that there have been rumors of someone collecting all the soul gems in the city. It’s unclear if this is the work of a rogue magical girl, a witch, or even a wraith at this point, but the chain witch is probably involved somehow.

And, lastly, Mami seems to imply that whatever’s causing the soul gems to dry up in Kamihama is also reducing the number of witches elsewhere.

Could this lower number of witches outside Kamihama, combined with the dreams about magical girls being “saved” in Kamihama, be a trap? Is someone, or something, intentionally luring magical girls into the city?

Conclusion

That’s all I have for Magia Record episode 3. Have you played the mobile game? If so, what’s the Coordinator’s role in it? And regardless of whether you’ve played the game or not, what do you think is going on in Kamihama city based on the information we have so far? Let me know in the comments.

If you enjoyed this review, remember to click the like button ❤ down below. Also follow me over on Twitter @DoubleSama so you don’t miss out on any future content. And, come join our Discord server if you’re interested in discussing anime with other members of the community.

Finally, I’d like to thank HeavyROMAN and CaptainRainbowPizza for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika and Sensei tiers respectively this month. To learn more about how you too can become a supporter of this blog, check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

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Magia Record Episode 2

Magia Record Episode 2

It’s Proof of the End of a Friendship

Although I enjoyed episode 1 of Magia Record, this second episode was much closer to how I hoped this series would be. And by that, I mean it introduced horror elements similar to those found in the original Madoka Magica series.

We’re also introduced to three new magical girls, some of which may seem a bit familiar. There’s Kaede Akino, Rena Minami, and Momoko Togame. These three magical girls attend the same school in Kamihama city and work as a team to defeat powerful witches.

Kaede is probably the most unique magical girl we’ve been introduced to across all Madoka anime so far. And the reason for this is because her aesthetic and weapon are based of a mage, or witch. Now, she’s not based on the kind of witches we see in this series, but she has the staff and stereotypical big witch hat.

Rena Minami and Momoko Togame from the anime series Madoka Magica: Magia Record
Rena Minami and Momoko Togame

However, Kaede seems to be fairly weak, or at least is someone who’s always scared — not exactly the best magical girl candidate. And that’s where her friends Rena and Momoko come in. They seem to be much stronger than Kaede and work to protect her.

Rena is my favorite magical girl of this side story so fair, mainly because of her appearance. Also I just have a thing for the mean girls. Interestingly, she has a music note accessory on her waistband and uses a trident as a weapon.

Can you think of another magical girl who has a blue color palette, wears a music accessory, and is associated with water? That’s right, Sayaka Miki.

And lastly we have Momoko who looks and acts like Mami Tomoe, but she uses a giant sword instead of matchlock rifles.

The Little Kyubey

While we didn’t get much new information about the little Kyubey, there was one thing which could be fairly important. The Kyubey who tags along with Iroha states that it shouldn’t be possible for there to be a child-like Kyubey. And to back this up, we know that Kyubey are artificial creatures — they don’t grow up.

So, what’s the deal with this little Kyubey? Is it even real in the first place? Nobody else has seen it other than Iroha.

Now, in the first episode review I mentioned that Kuroe may be linked to Iroha’s sister Ui, and I still think that could be the case. After all, I didn’t notice Kuroe featured in the OP at all. Maybe she’s just not going to be an important character, but I think it’s more likely she’s not entirely real.

And this ties in to the little Kyubey because I believe they’re actually connected. In theory, they could both be Ui. Kuroe’s color palette is black, while the little Kyubey’s is white — they could be two halves of the same whole.

Additionally, as you may recall from last week, I pointed out that erasing Ui from existence would take a pretty powerful magical girl. Kyubey actually confirmed that for us this week (1 point for DoubleSama).

This is important because if Ui was split into both Kuroe and the little Kyubey, that could explain how she disappeared without the need for a powerful magical girl. Perhaps when Iroha wished for Ui’s illness to be cured, she wasn’t strong enough, and some external force had to pitch in energy to make it happen, but with this side effect.

Wishes and Magic

But we really know nothing about how Ui, Kuroe, and the little Kyubey are related — or even if they’re related at all. So let’s move on and discuss something we do (sort of) know about: wishes and magic.

I talked a little bit about this topic last week, but at that point we really didn’t have any new information to go on. That all changes this week when we learn about both Kaede’s wish and Rena’s magic. Unfortunately, we didn’t also learn about Rena’s wish and Kaede’s magic just yet.

But remember, wishes and magic generally go hand in hand.

From Rena, we learn that Kaede’s wish had to do with saving her family’s garden. Rena feels that this was a stupid thing to spend a wish on, but from Kaede’s response it’s clear that she doesn’t feel the same. To her, this garden is a precious part of her family and may be her only meaningful way to interact with them.

As for her magic, I thought she was going to have some basic fire magic or something based on her appearance, but now I’m not so sure. Her magic could have something to do with plants, although you’d think that would be associated with a green magical girl.

Rena’s magic, on the other hand, is revealed to be some sort of shape shifting. She can physically transform into other people, most notably Momoko. However, we do see her transform into a variety of other people as well. What isn’t quite clear yet is whether or not there’s some trigger for her transformations. Can she transform into anyone?

But this gives us a pretty good idea about who Rena is. She probably doesn’t like being herself, and her wish will have reflected this.

The Chain Monster

The chain monster (and maybe the chain witch too) is what really reminded me that this is a side story of Madoka Magica. This is the kind of dark plot line I wanted from this series, and I’m glad it’s delivering on that so soon.

I’m going to go out on a limb and say that the chain monster and chain witch are linked (pun intended) in some way even if they aren’t the same thing. My guess is that the chain witch is the one who controls the chain monster(s) which drag people into her labyrinth.

But what’s interesting about the chain witch is that it doesn’t seem to function like other witches we’ve seen thus far — unless you’re counting Homura. That’s to say, the chain witch is targeting very specific people and bringing them into her labyrinth.

Kaede Akino and the "chain monster(s)" from the anime series Madoka Magica: Magia Record
Kaede Akino and the “chain monster(s)”

How these victims are chosen is also quite interesting. There’s a school mystery (it’s a Japanese thing) that states if you write your name on the sixth step of a certain staircase and the name of the person you no longer want to be friends with on the seventh, your friendship will be severed.

Normally that’s where the story would end, but in this case there’s a second, more sinister part. If either party of the severed friendship attempts to reconcile, they will be taken away by the chain monster and never heard from again.

Out of frustration, Rena writes her and Kaede’s names on this staircase — probably thinking nothing would come of it. But once Kaede apologizes to Rena, Rena realizes just how true the rumors are. She can see the chain monsters surrounding Kaede, but Kaede doesn’t even seem to notice them.

Conclusion

What did you think of Magia Record episode 2? Do you think the little Kyubey and Kuroe are related to each other? And are they related to what happened to Ui? Also, what do you think Kaede’s magic and Rena’s wish are? Lastly, are you as excited for the future of this series as I am after seeing the chain monster(s)? Let me know in the comments.

If you enjoyed this review, remember to click the like button ❤ down below. Also follow me over on Twitter @DoubleSama so you don’t miss out on any future content or updates. And come join our discord server if you’re interested in discussing anime with other members of the community.

Finally, I’d like to thank HeavyROMAN and CaptainRainbowPizza for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika and Sensei tiers respectively this month. To learn more about how you too can become a supporter of this blog, check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

My review of the next episode is available here.

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Magia Record Episode 1

Magia Record Episode 1

Have You Heard? That Rumor About the Magical Girls

It’s time to review the first piece of Madoka Magica (anime) content since 2013. Now, although this is a side story based on the Magia Record mobile game (which I haven’t played), these reviews will contain spoilers for the original series and Rebellion movie. You have been warned.

So, the first thing I should point out is that Shaft often release unfinished anime to air, and then fix all the issues for the blu-ray release. This hopefully means that all the parts of this episode, and series once it’s complete, with poor animation will be fixed later on. That’s not an excuse, just an explanation.

Now, I like how the series started off with the song “Sis Puella Magica.” That’s basically the main theme of the Madoka Magica series, so it was a great way to tie this side story in right from the start.

However, I also noticed that this seemed to be the only old song in the episode — which isn’t a bad thing. Yes, the Madoka Magica and Rebellion OSTs are great, but we should want to hear some new music from this series. And luckily, it seems to be pretty good so far despite being a bit different.

But anyway, the first episode itself sets up a new story with new magical girls. The basic premise is that magical girls from all over are having the same dream telling them to go to Kamihama city. The significance of this city may be hinted at by the name — perhaps a reference to Kami-sama, “god.”

And, that mass dream also claims that Kamihama city is where magical girls can be saved — remember that for later.

New Magical Girls

In this episode we’re introduced to three new magical girls, but only two of them have been named so far. The main character of this side story is Iroha Tamaki, a girl who bears a striking resemblance to Madoka Kaname. But, as far as we know, these two are not related.

Iroha’s parents, although similar, aren’t exactly the same as Madoka’s — both in appearance and attitude. For example, Madoka’s mother is a competent, high-ranking business woman, while Iroha’s mother seems a bit forgetful and I definitely wouldn’t say she has the same confidence.

Iroha Tamaki in magical girl form from the anime series Madoka Magica: Magia Record
Iroha Tamaki in magical girl form

The second magical girl is known as Kuroe, and she seems to be like a mix of Homura and Sayaka. However, her relationship with Iroha is an interesting one, because they’re almost more like business partners than friends. They work together to defeat witches (also important to remember), but they don’t seem to be all that close.

I’m also not entirely sure if Kuroe is real.

While Iroha is the “white” magical girl of the pair, Kuroe is the “black” one. And the word kuro (黒) means black in Japanese. Now, this could be her real name, or it could be a nickname, but this is Madoka Magica we’re talking about. I wouldn’t be surprised to find out that Kuroe isn’t entirely real.

She could be like Kuro (Chloe) from Prisma Illya.

Lastly, we have the unnamed magical girl from West Kamihama city. We know that she’s stronger than both Iroha and Kuroe, and that she works independently, which was once common for all magical girls.

Also, we don’t yet know what kind of magic each of these girls uses. We know what weapons they use, but magical girls also each have a signature type of magic related to their wish.

The Madoka Timeline

One of the biggest questions regarding this side story for me is, “when does it take place?” And the short answer is that I think it takes place after the Rebellion movie.

So, first of all, we know that magical girls can apparently be saved in Kamihama city. This would imply that the series takes place at some point after the original series and Madoka’s wish at the end of it to save all magical girls.

However, magical girls are still fighting against witches, and not wraiths. For those of you who aren’t aware, the wraith arc takes place between the original series and Rebellion — both of which mention this fact. Basically Madoka’s wish got rid of witches, and so wraiths took their place.

We also see the silhouette of the girl who appeared in the dreams of all the magical girls and told them they could be saved in Kamihama. This didn’t look like Madoka, or even Sayaka who would also make sense. Instead, this girl actually looks a lot like Bebe, which seems to imply this is after Rebellion.

Kuroe's soul gem from the anime series Madoka Magica: Magia Record
Kuroe’s soul gem

And, there’s also the fact that soul gems still exist and need to be purified with grief seeds (outside of Kamihama city — there is no Kyubey there). This is probably the most important piece of evidence because it points to Magia Record taking place after Homura has stolen a piece of “god” Madoka.

Madoka wished for all magical girls to be saved, but Homura basically voided this wish by sealing a piece of Madoka’s memories. So the only magical girls who are actually being saved are those in Kamihama city, the “god city” — not worldwide.

Wishes

Partially because we don’t yet know exactly when this side story takes place, and partially because we don’t exactly know how the world of magical girls functions after the Rebellion movie, it’s unclear how significant wishes are currently. As I mentioned previously, the magic of magical girls is based on their wish.

Examples of this are Homura’s use of time magic or Mami’s use of binding ribbon magic.

Additionally, the potential a magical girl has is directly connected to the scale of the wish they can have granted. Madoka had an insane amount of potential thanks to Homura, and so her wish was (initially) able to affect the entire universe.

We know that Kuroe’s wish was to date the boy she liked, and that her wish came true. Unfortunately for her, they later broke up. But just because this is a small scale wish doesn’t necessarily mean she has little potential, just that she’s bad at wishing for things.

Iroha, on the other hand seemingly had a pretty big wish which came true. She wished for Ui’s illness to be cured (Ui seems to be her sister), and theoretically this happened. That itself isn’t a big deal though, because Sayaka wished for something very similar in the original series.

What’s important with Iroha’s wish is that Ui doesn’t exist anymore. Iroha forgot who Ui was until she came into contact with the little Kyubey in Kamihama, and nobody else seems to recall Ui existing either. Ui is even missing from all of the pictures which are implied to have once included her.

My early prediction is that because Iroha didn’t specify how Ui’s illness should be cured, it was cured by Ui being “saved” by Madoka — thus erasing her from existence. Perhaps Kuroe is a piece of Ui.

Conclusion

What do you think of the Magia Record anime so far? Do you think this side story is going to live up to the original series? What do you think is the deal with Kuroe? What about Ui? And where do you think this story falls in the timeline? Let me know in the comments.

If you enjoyed this review, remember to click the like button ❤ down below. Also follow me over on Twitter @DoubleSama so you don’t miss out on any future content. And, come join our Discord server if you’re interested in discussing anime with other members of the community.

Finally, I’d like to thank HeavyROMAN for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika tier this month, as well as CaptainRainbowPizza for supporting at the Sensei tier. For more information on how you too can become a supporter of this blog, check out Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

My review of the next episode is available here.

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Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion

Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion

Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion anime cover art
Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion

Overview

Right from the start I want to mention that this review of Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion is going to be full of spoilers.

So with that PSA out of the way, I’m reviewing this movie today because @maisoonsart mentioned to me that I never actually did a review of this movie despite Madoka Magica being one of my favorite anime. And, considering it’s been almost two years since my original Madoka Magica review, I think this movie finally deserves some attention.

However, it’s not as if I haven’t written about Madoka Magica over these two years. For example, I wrote a five-part series on the main characters of Madoka Magica starting with Madoka Kaname.

But, finally getting to the movie at hand, this is the sequel to the series as well as the third movie. The first two movies are just recap of the series with slightly better visuals and a bit of information cut out. I recommend watching the series over those movies if it’s your first time. You can also skip those two movies if you’ve seen the series.

So, what’s interesting about Rebellion being the sequel to the series is that it gives the series a chance to start over. At the end of the series Madoka resets the world, but without herself or the witches magical girls fight against. This in turn leads to the rise of the wraiths, which are briefly mentioned in this movie.

However, the movie begins in a world with both Madoka and witches, but without the negative aspects associated with them.

The Cake Song

The start of the movie is weird and doesn’t make sense until later on. Per the end of the series Madoka and the witches should have been erased from existence and Sayaka should be dead (she died again after Madoka revived her). But the reason everything is “back to normal” is because this is a fake world.

This is a world created by Homura for reasons I’ll get to later on. The real world is in fact as I mentioned above.

But this fake world Homura created gives us a picture of the “ideal” world for magical girls, which is something we never really got to see at any point in the series. In this world, magical girls work together instead of against each other, and they have no fear of becoming witches themselves.

This concept is exemplified by the cake song scene. Here we see the five main magical girls singing and having fun in order to take down the witch Charlotte (Bebe). This is a drastic break from what we saw in the series, and it’s the first real sign that something isn’t quite right.

There’s also a great part of that scene when Kyouko passes Charlotte off to Mami. Charlotte is the witch form of the magical girl Bebe, whose favorite food is cheese. Mami represents cheese in the cake song. Charlotte was the witch who ate Mami in the series. And to tie this reference all together, Charlotte opens her mouth towards Mami as if she’s going to eat her again.

But this is a happy world in which Mami isn’t decapitated by Charlotte. So instead, Charlotte is saved and reverted back into her true form, Bebe. Other than the reference I just mentioned, I have no idea why Bebe is included in this movie.

Mami vs. Homura

The next scene of the movie I want to discuss is the fight between Mami and Homura. The inclusion of scenes like this is actually one of the things I like the most about this movie. It gives us a chance to see more of our main characters interacting with each other.

Think about it, Mami died in the series before Kyouko or even Homura joined the group. This fight between her and Homura gives us a chance to see characters interacting who we previously saw very little of. And it’s during this fight that we see how powerful Mami truly is.

Mami Tomoe vs. Homura Akemi from the anime Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion
Mami Tomoe vs. Homura Akemi

Homura has thousands of days worth of experience using her time magic and guns, and yet Mami is still skilled enough to hold her own in a one-on-one battle. She’s even smart enough to understand how Homura’s time ability works and how she can use her own ribbon ability to nullify it.

The one reason Mami eventually loses the fight is because she’s too caring. When Homura acts as if she’s going to end her own life, Mami lets her guard down just long enough for Homura to activate her ability.

And remember, just because we didn’t see Mami and Homura interacting as friends all that much in the series doesn’t mean they aren’t friends. In the current timeline they are friends, which is why Mami reacted the way she did. But, Homura knows Mami even better and is able to manipulate her feelings.

Kyouko and Sayaka

However, if there’s one thing more important than the extra characterization we get for Mami in this movie, it’s the extra characterization we get for Kyouko and Sayaka. That’s right, the ship has officially sailed and this yuri is not bait.

Back in the series we got a little teaser of the fact that Kyouko and Sayaka had a relationship that went beyond just being friends. This is why Kyouko sacrifices her own life to take down Oktavia von Seckendorff (the witch version of Sayaka).

I’m sure I’ve mentioned this in a number of other posts, but the scene of Kyouko and Sayaka finally being reunited is probably my favorite of the entire movie. After all, they had a pretty tragic story up to this point.

Kyouko Sakura and Sayaka Miki holding hands from the anime Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion
Kyouko Sakura and Sayaka Miki holding hands

In their first lives Sayaka turned into a witch due to her despair and Kyouko committed murder-suicide. Then in their second lives Sayaka died once again, leaving Kyouko behind alone. But now that they’re back together for the third time Kyouko can finally express her feelings to Sayaka.

Seriously, whether you’ve seen the Madoka Magica series or are planning to watch it, don’t skip the Rebellion movie. It adds so much more to the characters.

Rebellion

The final thing I need to go over about this movie is the ending and how exactly it ties into the series which preceded it. As I mentioned, this “ideal” world for magical girls was created by Homura. And interestingly, that makes Homura the villain of the movie — sort of(?)

Really, for both the series and the movie I could argue that Homura or Madoka is the villain. They’re actually constantly working against each other, so if Madoka is the protagonist, Homura is the antagonist — and she takes this role seriously this time around.

At the end of the series Madoka made it so that witches could no longer exist in the world. However, Homura used her own magic to make a bubble world in which witches could exist. She then became a pseudo-witch within this world and created a labyrinth of her own — the “ideal” world in which the movie takes place.

The Homura of this world is really just a shadow of the real Homura. Mami and Kyouko are very much real, though. As for Sayaka and Madoka, things get a bit more complicated. Sayaka was sent to this world by Madoka in order to stop Homura. And the Madoka of this world is just a single piece of the omnipotent Madoka.

If that makes no sense, go rewatch the movie.

So, Homura’s plan was to take a piece of the omnipotent Madoka and return her to the school life she always wanted. And at the end of the movie that’s exactly what she does. Homura is able to take the power of omnipotent Madoka and reshape the world (temporarily) to be the world free of magic which Madoka should have created from the start.

And that’s where the movie ends.

Conclusion

I know this review was a bit rambling, especially towards the end, but I was trying to fit a lot of ideas in a review that isn’t too long. Basically, it’s a very good movie and you should watch it. After all, the animation is by Shaft and the OST is by Yuki Kajuira, so it must be good.

But, despite that, I actually liked the series more than the movie. To me, Puella Magi Madoka Magica the Movie: Rebellion is a 9/10.

Yes, it gave us a lot more information about the various characters, but overall I didn’t think the story being told was quite as good. I think I would have rather the movie been about the Wraith Arc which we don’t actually ever get to see animated other than briefly in the epilogue of the series.

If you enjoyed this review or found it helpful in any way, remember to click the like button ❤ down below. Also follow me over on Twitter @DoubleSama so you don’t miss out on on any future content such as my eventual review of Madoka Magica Gaiden: Magia Record.

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Sayaka Miki: The Sacrifice

Sayaka Miki: The Sacrifice

Introduction

Welcome to the fifth and final part of my Madoka Magica characters series. If you’re interested in reading any of the previous entries in this series, click on the following links: Homura, Madoka, Kyouko, and Mami.

While Sayaka isn’t a potential protagonist like Madoka or Homura are, she does serve the role of the hero in the story. Unfortunately for her, she serves the role of the sacrificial hero, and sacrifices her own well-being for others a few too many times.

I actually didn’t care for Sayaka’s character all that much until after I watched the Rebellion movie. Since then, I’ve come to appreciate Sayaka’s character and role, because without her, the rest of the magical girls would have been lost.

For Mami

Sayaka’s first sacrifice comes shortly after the death of her friend and mentor, Mami Tomoe. Mami was the city’s resident magical girl and was killed by the witch Charlotte while defending Sayaka and Madoka.

It appears that Sayaka felt partially responsible for Mami’s death because she believes it wouldn’t have happened if Mami didn’t have to protect her. This, in part, leads Sayaka to become a magical girl herself so that she won’t be a burden to her friends next time.

She sacrifices her normal, middle school life to continue Mami’s work as the city’s magical girl.

Magical Girl Sayaka Miki from the anime Puella Magi Madoka Magica
Sayaka Miki

For Love

But, simply becoming a magical girl is only one of the multiple ways in which she sacrificed herself. Coinciding with her sacrifice for Mami was her sacrifice for her love, specifically for a boy named Kyousuke whom she has a crush on.

Kyousuke is one of Sayaka’s classmates who has been bedridden in a hospital for some unknown amount of time. At one point he was a violinist, but whatever injury or illness he’s afflicted with has robbed him of full use of his hands, and as a result he’ll never be able to play the violin again.

As you may know, magical girls get one wish granted in exchange for their services when they make a pact with Kyubey. Sayaka used her wish for Kyousuke’s sake and wished that he would get better and be able to play the violin once again.

There’s no doubt that in the back of her mind she hoped that this wish would make it so the two of them could be together, but at the same time she knew that he would never know it was her doing. She could have wished for anything in the world, but instead she chose to use her wish to help someone in need.

What seems like a selfish wish on the surface was actually the second sacrifice Sayaka made. She gave up her chance to wish for Kyousuke to love her, and instead wished for his dream of playing the violin again to come true.

For Her City

The potentially biggest sacrifice Sayaka makes throughout the whole series is for the citizens of her city. This is the sacrifice that ends up taking her life (the first time) when she falls into despair and becomes the witch Oktavia von Seckendorff.

Yes, she fell into despair partially because after wishing for Kyousuke to get better, her friend Hitomi “steals” him away from her, but this isn’t actually the primary reason. The real reason Sayaka fell into despair was because she was working too hard as a magical girl to protect her city.

Every time magical girls use their magic, and very slowly over time anyway, their soul gems become more and more tainted. Once their soul gems turn completely black, the girls die and become witches, the things magical girls fight against in the first place.

The only way to purify a soul gem, however, is to defeat witches and use the grief seeds they drop. In theory, a magical girl should never fall into despair because by continuously defeating witches, they can continue to purify their own soul gems.

However, in practice this isn’t really the case, at least for someone like Sayaka. I’ll use the difference between Sayaka and Kyouko to explain this point.

After meeting, Kyouko stops Sayaka from hunting down a witch’s familiar because she says it isn’t worth the effort since familiars don’t drop grief seeds. Sayaka, however, says that a familiar is still able to harm someone, and so it’s her job as a magical girl to defeat it.

Kyouko’s philosophy is that a magical girl should think only of herself, and so she should allow a familiar to “eat” civilians until it grows into a full-fledged witch, at which point a magical girl should “eat” the witch and obtain the grief seed it drops. It’s the food chain as far as she’s concerned.

But, even with this explanation, Sayaka still believes that she should defeat familiars before they can harm anyone, even though it means she doesn’t receive a grief seed in return. It’s this philosophy that eventually results in her falling into despair.

Sayaka sacrifices her own life for the people of her city by defeating familiars which would do them harm and then being unable to purify her soul gem afterwards. Upon her death, she says that she doesn’t regret sacrificing her life for the civilians, just that she regrets she couldn’t save more of them in the little time she had.

For Her Friends

Now, at this point you may be reminded of the wise words of Shirou Emiya from Fate/Stay Night, “People die when they are killed.” However, that doesn’t necessarily apply when your best friend decides to become a goddess and rewrite the universe so that you’re alive again.

We’re now in what’s known as the Wraith arc. Madoka is a goddess whose existence is only known by Homura, and Sayaka, Kyouko, and Mami are all alive and well once again. This means that Sayaka gets a second chance at life, so what does she do? She sacrifices herself again.

It’s unclear exactly at what point this new universe started, but Sayaka, Mami, and Kyouko are all magical girls once more, except this time they fight against wraiths instead of witches. It’s during one of these battles that Sayaka sacrifices herself once again.

Just like how Kyouko destroyed her own soul gem in the previous universe in order to take down the witch Oktavia von Seckendorff, Sayaka destroys her own soul gem in the new universe in order to save her friends from a wraith. After this point, Sayaka is “officially” dead, although she still does come back.

For Magical Girls

The final sacrifice of Sayaka in the currently available anime comes in the Rebellion movie. After her second death, Sayaka works under the Law of Cycles Madoka. If Madoka is a goddess, then we can view Sayaka’s role at this point as that of an angel.

Instead of whatever typically happens to people after death in the Madoka Magica universe, Sayaka has chosen to become an eternal hero for magical girls around the world. If you’re familiar with Fate/UBW, this is the same thing Shirou Emiya does as well.

Sayaka has sacrificed her eternal peace in order to save girls from falling into despair instead, as we see her attempt to do for Homura.

Conclusion

At the end of the Rebellion movie it’s unclear just how Homura’s fake universe affects Sayaka’s role as an angel, much like how we don’t know how it affects the Law of Cycles. However, I think it’s safe to assume that once Homura’s fake universe dissolves, Sayaka will go back to saving magical girls under Madoka’s direction.

From the very start, Sayaka was an unselfish character who was willing to give up everything in order to help others, even after learning just how much “everything” actually was.

So what are your thoughts on Sayaka Miki as a character? Do you like her as I do? Did you hate her as I did? Let me know in the comment section down below, and while you’re down there, click the like button if you enjoyed this final Madoka Magica character series post.

If you’re interested in other Madoka Magica content besides the entries of this series, there are a variety of other posts about various aspects of the anime which you can find on the site through the search bar. Also, since this post was about Sayaka, here’s a link to my Sayaka Miki Nendoroid post.

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