Back in 2012, a now retired blogger named trzr23 have created an Anime Blog project called “Let’s us Remember Love.” Apparently, Justin at Organization Anti-Social Geniuses will be doing the second year of it and I will be participating.
For this year, I decided to take a look back at Madoka Magica since two movies has already released for the franchise. When I watched this back in 2011 with a group of people online when it was airing, it felt like a different magical girl show filled with despair. This is mostly contributed to Gen Urobuchi’s writing, the person who is also behind Fate/zero and Gargantia. His stories are filled with tragedy and a lot of character deaths. While shows like Lyrical Nanoha have girls fighting for survival to maintain peace, Madoka completely deconstructs the genre, which is already a good reason to take a look back. (Image Source)
When I watched the first episode, it looked like an innocent show. Madoka seems to be the nicest girl in the show, which supposedly had a lot of potential. She was a friend with Sayaka and Hitomi. However, Kyubey ruins their cheerful lives by trying to persuade Madoka and Sayaka to become magical girls for his own enjoyment and goals.
By now, everyone knows that Kyubey is bad news already because of the later episodes. To me, he feels like a creeper who wants to create as many deceptive contracts with a girl as possible without telling them the consequences. As you see later, it gets worse after he reveals his radical ideals. Basically, this is the reason why almost everyone loves to hate him because of how unsympathetic he is when something bad happens to the girls. In fact, there is a lot of fan art depicting the girls beating the crap out of him.
On the other hand, the interesting part about Madoka Magica in the first three episodes is that becoming a magical girl is basically hell. They have to fight witches, which are basically magical girls completely consumed by despair. The only way to prevent the transformation is to collect grief seeds so you can purify your soul gem. At the same time, most magical girls face horrible lives after they get their wishes granted. As shown with Mami, she still faced loneliness after getting saved from a car crash thanks to a wish. Because of this, she wanted Madoka to become a magical girl so she would have a friend. Sadly, you know how that went as she ultimately dies in a gruesome death.
While I see Mami’s death as a warning that no one should make a contract with Kyubey, Sayaka ignores it and does it anyway just to save her childhood friend. Sadly, she didn’t get the warning about being careful what you wish for since most of the wishes granted in this show are usually selfless, thus leading to tragedy and despair. Of course, this aspect of becoming a magical girl since it makes the story interesting. As shown by a certain girl who experiences a lot of sad moments over and over, she gets a happy ending after a wish that changes the system.
Next Time: Sayaka and Kyoko join the fray… ¶