Posted by psgels on 4 March 2011 with categories: Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica



A very, very macabre build-up here. On one side, the deaths in this series don’t have as much of a shock value compared to what happened to Mami. On the other hand though, the creators just did decimate the cast here. At this point there are only five named characters alive, and two of those have stopped being relevant to the plot.

In about a week the definitive lengths of the series of the current season should get announced, but it looks like there are three episodes left at this point. These should be enough for this series to change its direction, now that it lost some very important side-characters, and use these changes for its ending. The pieces are now all correctly set: Walpurgis Night is coming, and Madoka pretty much is going to have to choose between either becoming a mahou shoujo or having this Walpurgis thingy feasting on the city they’re in.

A lot of the finale is going to depend on Madoka’s development. I mean, she’s probably the most typical character of the entire cast, and spends a lot of time angsting, but a character was really needed for this show to be able to do what it wanted to do. As a deconstruction, this series would not have worked as well if Madoka was more mature. A part of the charm of this series is seeing Madoka nearly giving into Incubator again and again, continually building the tension between them. Because Madoka is indecisive it allows this series to flesh out all possible options for her to a great detail. Sure, weak characters like her can get very annoying when used poorly, but this show shows how to do them right, by having the entire plot revolve around this weakness of hers.
Rating: ** (Excellent)

18 Responses

  1. DanSag says:

    Im quite positive that Madoka will be the witch that causes Walpurigsnacht! As Kyubee said, she will be one of the strongest Puella Magica, as well as one of the strongest witches.

  2. No one says:

    Theory: Madoka IS Walpurgis Night.

  3. maskedguy says:

    Eh, can’t be, Walpurgis seems to be the gear witch from dream at beginning, it even suits Incubator’s/Kyubey’s comment that Homura can’t fight it alone.

  4. South says:

    Madoka is not the witch from the first night. Homura was wanting Kyouko to be able to fight the witch to avoid Madoka from becoming one, so…she isn’t the witch. Plus the dream sequence makes that pretty clear…

    Anyway, I agree about the Madoka character. I’m really glad she didn’t pull hero-time, since she is a person with low confidence, and the times she was going to were because she felt there was no choice, she was being pushed to it. I also love the fact she is scared and all but still didn’t dare leave Sayaka alone in her with hunts.

    I can’t see this series having a perfect ending. On one hand, if the girls aren’t Magical Girls, the universe is doom. If they are, the magic-girl cycles go on, poor girls. ;_;

  5. Kiarae says:

    Kyubey was so terrible in this episode! But he’s at least explained a little better now. Still vague as always, but better information.

    I really do wonder what can be done over three episodes now and hope it isn’t just about Madoka’s angst. With so many characters out… unless you have the finale encompass two episodes (which it may), the next episode would have to explain Homura I hope.

  6. cx says:

    Hitomi is walpurgis night :]

  7. JNH says:

    Seconding Hitomi is the Walpurgis Night. She freaks out cuz Sayaka is dead, Violin Boy is too distraught to comfort her, Madoka is a sobbing mess and also can’t comfort her.

    Then Kyuube struts in like the smooth lil’ mofo he is.

    There’s so few characters in the show I feel like they need to squeeze all the use out of them possible.

  8. LoliHat says:

    Incubator, in this world we OBEY the laws of thermodynamics!”

    Seriously though, the QB alien(s) remind me of the Strangers from “Dark City.” They may be from another one of the multiverses/timelines to suck the energy from this one via Magical Girls…kind of like Asimov’s “The Gods Themselves.”

    This series has turned into the Magical Girl version of “To Serve Man.” Aliens promise and deliver wonderful things and then use humans like cattle…all with out lying outright. If I were Madoka, I’d be screaming all over the place “IT’S A COOKBOOK!!!”

  9. Solaris says:

    >On one side, the deaths in this series don’t have as much of a shock value compared to what happened to Mami.
    It’s just you did expect it. It was all build to be like that as much as Mami’s death came unannounced.

  10. betawatcher says:

    It’s better if she died than if she got magically revived though. (i’m tired of shows that are too scared to kill off characters…)

  11. Tan-Tan says:

    I was hoping Kyoko shout an attack move like Mami :(

  12. Tomtom says:

    Altough this show has many redeeming qualtities and I’m glad I picked it up by now, there is one aspect of it that irritates me.

    The flaw of this series reminds me of Noein. I like the atmosphere, music and characters in this show but it tries way too hard coming up with ‘explanations’ for a fantasy anime:
    We have to buy that ‘soul energy’ is released when witches die, which is needed by aliens because of the second law of thermodynamics.. riiight.
    I hope this series will stick to what it’s good at in the final episodes and leave things to the imagination of the viewer when nescecarry.

  13. Houlgrave says:

    In all honesty, I found Kyuube’s explanation quite interesting, because that’s exactly what’s happening in our universe right now. Entropy breaks down the material universe, which makes it impossible for living and non-living matter to sustain themselves in the long run.

    Still, quite of the comments I’m seeing across the Internet about this series (including here) make me think that some of the underlying themes present are simply going completely over viewers’ heads..but that’s nothing new.

    At the end of the day, people at large never have been very good at dealing with the darker side of sci-fi because of how insignificant it makes them feel. There’s so much existential despair going on that it almost makes you wonder if the staff have been re-reading their H.P. Lovecraft, Childhood’s End, etc.

  14. Houlgrave says:

    *quite a few

  15. South says:

    No, Hitomi is not the witch of Walpurgis! Same explanation as with Madoka! She wouldn’t have contacted Madoka at all if she knew she was going to become the witch that made Madoka go evil.

    Plus both of them are in the dream, it’s just a random powerful witch!

  16. Solaris says:

    >Plus both of them are in the dream, it’s just a random powerful witch!
    I think there’s something more. Of course, it can’t be Sayaka or Kyuoko for evident reasons. It can’t be Madoka or Homura cause they’d be there to fight eventually. As the fact there aren’t enough known charactters to make up a new witch from nothing, maybe Kyuubey could be the one that started walpurgis in a desperate attempt to let Madoka join the fight as well. But of course this is just an hypothesis

  17. Scruffy says:

    After thinking about Incubator’s explination of the role of the Puella Magica and the Witches in generating energy, I can see a massive flaw in the system, or perhaps it’s not a flaw. The negative entropy generation requires one important thing, balance between the witches and Puella Magica. If an insanely powerful witch comes along that cannot be defeated, then humanity will simply be wiped out. I suspect that Incubator won’t get his energy as I think he gets those when he ‘ingests’ the grief seeds.

    So what i think Homura is trying to do is to prevent Madoka from becoming that insanely powerful witch that will almost wipe out humanity, or leave the reminants hiding behind magical barriers. She may be from the quite distant future.

    Madoka on the other hand may have the choice of doing nothing, or to be come a Puella Magica and then killing herself after defeating the witch to save the future.

  18. windy says:

    Are there only three episodes left?! No way, why would all the most impressive series be so short?! I hope there’re more seasons on the way!

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  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:48 AM)
    Ashura was an excellent example of how to through anime illicit and emotional response in an honest, non-melodramatic way.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:46 AM)
    @Bam: I’d be more than happy to take a look at some of those shorts anytime.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:44 AM)
    @Emma: there’s a lot of European animators that got active in the last 10 years or so that are really reinvigorating their animation scene, and every now and then I get introduced to some fabulous shorts.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:40 AM)
    @Emma: no I don’t really mind gory ‘for the fuck of it’ violence, I even like it in some grindhouse type of works, but I just don’t think it’s always effective as a shock factor. Live-action is the most sympathetic for obvious reasons, but there are animated works that do elicit a deep response. Probably because of circumstances but also the details of the in-between animation, which can induce certain feelings of disgust.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:39 AM)
    *here and there
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:35 AM)
    @Bam: I really wish there was more arthouse anime now to give some kind of a balance to everything thats out these days.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:33 AM)
    Now I like my exploitation every so often, but yes Bam I really do wish that adult and mature storytelling could be better associated with truly, more pure mature themes.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:25 AM)
    I get choked up over Bergmans cries and whisper and Autumn sonata, I look back on a work by Key and Jun Maeda and wonder, think of how silly it looks to me now.
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:24 AM)
    I also find it easier to get an emotional response from a honest drama, live action film, largely due to the real people doing the acting. Sometimes you get an actor whose just that good too…
  • Emma
    (Sunday, May 24. 2015 05:22 AM)
    I’ve gotten my odd emotional reaction here from anime and manga but a lot of the time it feels like the jump scare in a generic horror movie, I got shocked but I felt minipulated afterwards it wasn’t genuine, the same goes for some anime/manga drama when it takes a melodramatic turn instead of a bleak, honest one.

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