Magical Girls for Grownups
August 23, 2012 10:29 AM Subscribe
posted by Narrative Priorities (17 comments total)
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Six years ago, Hold Me Now
-- an AMV
for the anime Princess Tutu
-- won best of show at Anime Boston
. Edited to the song Håll Om Mig by Nanne Grönvall
, it was enthusiastically passed around among anime fans
, many of whom had never seen the show before and knew little or nothing about it. Princess Tutu
has since gained moderate popularity, and many of its fans cite Hold Me Now
as their motivation to seek it out.
Princess Tutu -- a magical girl
show that follows the story of a duck who turns into a girl who turns into a magical ballerina whose fate is controlled by a malevolent narrator -- defied many viewers' genre-based expectations. Part of the success of "Hold Me Now" in helping the show find an American audience was due to how it hinted at a darker, more complicated and sometimes heartbreaking story behind the adorable ballerina girl on the cover.
This subversion and exploration of the magical girl genre continues in Puella Magi Madoka Magica
, which won the SF-centric Seiun Award for "Best Media of the Year" earlier this month
. Contrary to the tone its opening sequence
, Madoka Magica
has been described as transforming the magical girl genre in much the same way that Neon Genesis Evangelion
once redefined "giant robot
" shows. Like Princess Tutu, it explores themes of identity of fate, and how the unexpected weight of responsibility affects the lives of young people.
And just as "Hold Me Now" once inspired the fan community to pick up Princess Tutu, perhaps Mahou Shoujo Requiem
-- which won Best in Show at multiple conventions after its premier in 2011
-- will now do the same for Madoka Magica.