2 thoughts on “Roasting Mahouka

  1. This was surprisingly positive for something that’s meant to be a “roast”. I agree with your opinions (that it’s fun to watch, despite its incompetence in basic storytelling), just with a few caveats.

    There’s a nasty edge at the core of Mahouka, which prevents me from liking it in an entirely innocent fashion. Its attempts to be mature don’t really come across as endearingly precocious so much as horribly misguided. It’s like the cynical teenager who will never profess he is wrong. You could say there was a level of self-centered nastiness in a series like Guilty Crown (the other top pick for anibloggers), too, but it doesn’t come through as strongly as it does in Mahouka.

    The presentation and aesthetics in this show also feels clinical and soulless. Part of this is to do with how the setting is a puritan slant of a highly technologised future, but at the same time, you can’t really get the same feeling of earnestness, that the writer put his heart into this story, which you can sense from Sword Art Online – even though that too was a very indulgent narrative.

    So, yeah. I like most stories of this genre, which is probably a big reason why I don’t dislike Mahouka, but the things I find myself latching onto are things like the attractive character designs and the cool OP. The show is actually fairly decent when Tatsuya is not onscreen, though. (I think you once described him as a black hole that sucks up all the fun whenever he shows his face? That’s so true!) And the dumb “school life moments” work really well here, perhaps because the rest of the show takes itself so uber seriously you just want a break.

    tldr; this show is rotten to the core, but I enjoy it anyway, because life’s too short to get mad over a cartoon.


    • Well, I did write it for the Crunchyroll Newsletter, which meant I had to try and find some angle to make people at least think about buying a CR membership and watching the show. I’ve sold out, I know…

      I do agree that it’s pretty soulless, and when it’s actually doing things like this week’s magic “battles,” it’s entirely dull. The only entertainment comes from watching it trip over itself again and again. It’s got no entertainment value. Like the aptly derided “elevator” music that numerous other anibloggers have criticized, Mahouka just puts on a nice face, smiles and then continue to say nasty things as if they were compliments.

      But something about being able to see through that face and hear the ugliness is sadly humorous, as if I were listening, shaking my head and going, “I can see right through you, you know.”


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