Mahou Shoujo Site: Anime Review

Mahou Shoujo Site

Mahou Shoujo Site, or Magical Girl Site as its called in English, is an anime like I have never seen before. Production doA brings us this spring 2018 title. It’s use of CGI with dark elements and themes blends perfectly together. Being a magical girl anime, Mahou Shoujo Site continues on the path that Madoka Magica once created. MyAnimeList describes this anime as a “Horror, Psychological, Supernatural, Drama”, which aren’t typically the genres expected for a magical girl anime. Originally, I was only planning on giving this title three episodes and was assuming that I was going to drop it. This ended up being one of my favourite anime of all time. The following will not contain spoilers relative to the plot.

The Story

The main character in Mahou Shoujo Site is Aya Asagiri. On many occasions, she is bullied at school to extreme measures. Aya’s brother also abuses her at home. Aya finds her way to the magical girl website where a creepy shadow like figure known as an administrator appears. Admins give different magical items to girls with hard lives called “sticks”. These sticks all have unique powers and come in different items. However, there is a catch. Using a stick will shorten a magical girl’s overall life span. While the true intentions of magical site admins are not stated when handing out sticks, Aya and her friends will need to work together in their new life of magical powers and take down ‘Tempest’

The Characters

Mahou Shoujo Site

(Aya Asagiri, Mahou Shoujo Site Wiki, FANDOM, Web, 2018)

Aya Asagiri

The main protagonist, Aya is a transfer student that has trouble getting along with others. After making enemies with one of the class’s most popular students Aya is bullied to the point where every day becomes a struggle. Pushed to the edge, her perseverance shows to make it through each day, finally making a friend. Aya is constantly put in situations where she must use her inner strength and comes face to face with potential death multiple times. However, at times, Aya has problems using her stick.

Mahou Shoujo Site

(Tsuyuno Yatsumura, Anime planet, Web, 2018)

Tsuyuno Yatsumura

Yatsumura is a magical girl that has much more experience than Aya. With a tragic backstory it’s easy to see why Yatsumura is the way she is. She has had to endure tragedy with her parents, her only friend, and even has her house being destroyed. Yatsumura ends up covering for Aya many times as she has no problems using her stick to kill. She is witty and has very little patience for people she doesn’t like.

Mahou Shoujo Site

(Rina Shioi, Anime planet, Web, 2018)

Rina Shioi

Shioi is an interesting magical girl. Her morals may be in the right place, but the actions she takes to achieve what she thinks is right isn’t always seen as good. She gets into confrontations with other magical girls and isn’t liked by many. Not much can be said about her as she is very crucial to the plot.

Mahou Shoujo Site

(Nijimi Anazawa, Anime planet, Web, 2018)

Nijimi Anazawa

A magical girl with a very powerful stick that can be fatal if put into the wrong hands. By day, Nijimi an idol that is loved by many. However, unlike the other magical girls she has a different goal. Nijimi has her eye on someone in particular. Throughout her journey she meets a love interest that makes a major impact on her life.

Mahou Shoujo Site

(Sarina Shizukume, Anime planet, Web, 2018)

Sarina Shizukume

A classmate of Aya and a personal enemy, Sarina has given up on being friends with Aya. After trying to be nice, Sarina becomes irritated after never receiving a thank you. She sees Aya as ungrateful and bullies her. Some of her tactics include putting suicide paraphernalia in Aya’s locker or writing hate speech on her desk. After discovering the power of a magical girl she vows to herself that she will be the end to Aya.

Art, Animation, Sound

First I will touch on the art. Mahou Shoujo Site uses a combination of cool and warm colours depending on the theme of the episode. A beach scene shows off bright colours while a hospital scene shows off dark colours. Just look at the contrast of these two stills:

(Mahou Shoujo Site, Episode 8, production doA, Screenshot, Web, 2018)

Mahou Shoujo Site

(Mahou Shoujo Site, Episode 2, production doA, Screenshot, Web, 2018)

Characters have very rounded off, but sharp near the chin faces. Curved lines make faces soft and typically make a character seem more innocent or cute. This is the case with Aya, but it also can make a character have harsher facial expressions as seen with the character below:

Mahou Shoujo Site

(Mahou Shoujo Site, Episode 8, production doA, Screenshot, Web, 2018)

The use of CGI is prevalent throughout Mahou Shoujo Site. The site administrators, effects, the list goes on. In addition to CGI, the ending theme uses real-life people. I will attach the whole ending theme below as I highly recommend watching it. A major in-depth analysis would be needed to unravel all the layers and symbolistic references to the show. 

Lastly, Sound. The eerie ambiance noise that certain characters have is chilling to the soul and adds a dramatic texture to the respected character. The opening theme is “Changing point” by i☆Ris. i☆Ris is a Jpop group that star in the anime series PriPara with each member playing a main character. The ending theme is “Zenzen Tomodachi” by Haruka Yamazaki. Haruka Yamazaki also voices Sarina in the show. A nice touch added in Mahou Shoujo Site during episode three is that Nijimi, the idol character, sang the ending theme during a concert. The song she sings is “…Watashi dake Mitete♡ (…私だけ見てて♡)”, and only occurs during this episode.

Overall Thoughts

As someone who has seen hundreds of different anime of all different genres I am confident in saying that I have not seen anything like Mahou Shoujo Site. This anime made me uncomfortable in the best way possible. With dark themes, vivid facial expressions, and chalkboard screeching dialogue echoing in my head each episode; I had to pause and reflect on many occasions. As good as Mahou Shoujo Site is, it’s not for everyone. The anime is for a more older audience that enjoy shock factor and are accepting of ‘anime logic’ to fill plot holes. Under most circumstances, this would make an anime bad. However, in this case the captivation from the story and elements leaves a watcher more questioning of what they watched rather than how the plot is progressing.

If you’re still on the fence about watching Mahou Shoujo Site then let me give you one last reason. From YouTube, anituber ‘Kizuna Ai’, also known as ‘A.I. Channel’, is the voice actor for one of the site administrators. If you are unfamiliar with Kizuna Ai, you can check her out below:

 

Check out more spring 2018 anime:

Devils Line

Wotaku ni Koi wa Muzukashi

Uma Musume Pretty Derby

Mahou Shoujo Site

Summary

Mahou Shoujo Site is anime for those who like shock factor piled upon story. Although the delivery for the story isn’t very strong, it is an very interesting premise that is backed up with ‘edgyness’. With elements of Madoka Magica, Mahou Shoujo Site is a very interesting anime.

  • Overall Score
Overall
4.5

About The Author

Isaiah Jones

Isaiah is a student at the University of Western Ontario. Currently he is studying Music Production and working towards his Bachelor of Arts. In addition, he is minoring in Philosophy. Isaiah enjoys writing as an outlet, but would love to pursue a career in Journalism if the opportunity presents itself. During his free time you can catch Isaiah playing video games, watching anime, writing, or attending concerts.

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