Magikano – The Complete Series (a J!-ENT Anime DVD Review)
October 17, 2009 by Dennis Amith
“For those who enjoy harem anime series, ‘Magikano’ is definitely a wacky series in which many females (who happen to be witches) vie for young Haruo’s attention. Wacky, humorous and fun!”
Image courtesy of © 2005 Takeaki Momoise – Kodansha- Magikano Project. All Rights Reserved.
TITLE: Magikano – The Complete Series
DURATION: 13 Episodes (325 minutes)
DVD INFORMATION: English 5.1 Dolby Surround Stereo, Japanese Stereo
COMPANY: Gonzo/FUNimation Entertainment
RATED: TV 14
Based on the original manga by Takeaki Momose
Directed by Seiji Kishi
Series Composition and Script by Hideki Mitsui
Music by Katsuyuki Harada
Character Design: Takashi Kobayashi
Art Director: Masakazu Miyake
Chief Animation Director: Takashi Kobayashi
Sound Director: Satoki Iida
Director of Photography: Hiroshi Kubo
Editing by Takashi Sakurai
Animation by Tokyo Kids
Production by Magikano Production Committee
Featuring the following voice talent:
Mitsuhiro Ichiki/Clint Bickham as Haruo Yoshikawa
Sakura Nogawa/Jessica Boone as Ayumi Mamiya
Halko Momoi/Carli Mosier as Marin Nijihara
Kanako Sakai/Luci Christian as Chiaki Yoshikawa
Mai Nakahara/Kira Vincent-Davis as Maika Yoshikawa
Nana Inoue/Tiffany Grant as Rika Anju
Natsuko Kuwatani/Monica Rial as Michiru Mamiya
Noriko Namiki/Carli Mosier as Yuri Kurosu
Noriko Rikimaru/Christine Auten as Tetsuko Hondo
Tomoko Kaneda/Hilary Haag as Fuyuno Yoshikawa
Haruo Yoshikawa always believed he was just an average, run-of-the-mill kid. He makes average grades in school, lives in an average house with his average family, and looks to be headed for a totally average future.
But there’s something Haruo doesn’t know. Maika, Chiaki, and Fuyuno, his three sneaky sisters, have been keeping a him in the dark about their family’s dirty little secret – they’re all witches! In the blink of an eye, his life goes from average to unbelievable with the arrival of Ayumi – an enchanting young girl who’s bound and determined to arouse his inner magician and make a “real man” out of Haruo. Warning! There’s supernatural slapstick, magical mayhem and great, jiggling gobs of fan service galore in the most totally witching series ever – Magikano!
Back in 2003, mangaka Takeaki Momose (“Miami Guns”, “RahXephon”) released his manga series “Magikano” which was published on “Magazine Z” from Kodansha. The manga would eventually receive a 13-episode anime series courtesy of Tokyo Kids and was broadcast on Animax in 2005 and now the complete series is available on DVD courtesy of FUNimation Entertainment.
The series is directed by Seiji Kishi (“Ragnarok the Animation”, “Galaxy Angel Rune”, “Yugo the Negotiator” and “Tentai Senshi Sunred”) and would feature a screenplay by Hideki Mitsui (“Mahoujin Guru Guru”, “Sol Bianca: The LEgacy”, “Tenchi in Tokyo”, etc.). Character design is by Takashi Kobayashi (“Angel Tales”, “Battle Skipper”, “Hand Maid Mai”, “Kasho no Tsuki”) and music by Katsuyuki Harada (“Galaxy Angel Rune”, “Hime-sama Goyojin”).
The series revolves around a teenager named Haruo Yoshikawa. Your average junior high school teenager who has never missed a day of school and lives with his three sisters Maika, Chikaki and Fuyuno. What he doesn’t know is that his sisters are witches and do whatever the can to protect their brother and not catch on that they are a magical family. Each day his sisters use magic, they use a memory erasing hammer on him, so he doesn’t remember a thing. It’s also interesting to note that the eldest sister Maika, has a brother complex (almost like an attraction) and very protective of any girl trying to get near her brother.
Meanwhile, a blonde girl named Ayumi is a witch who has been cursed when she was a child and tends to get into mischief. So, in order to lift the curse, her father sends her out to Earth where she must befriend Haruo, the only person that can lift the curse from her. So, in order to become close to him, she decides to become a maid at their home and moves into their house. But how Ayumi wants to get close to Haruo is by using her body in anyway she can to attract him to her and get close to him enough to seduce him and unlift the curse.
Needless to say, the three sisters are not so happy about this and it causes chaos and the sisters will do whatever it takes to prevent ANY woman or person from taking advantage or getting close to Haruo. Add a few more characters (who also want to be close to Haruo) and “Magikano” becomes a hilarious and fun harem anime series of witches who vow for Haruo’s attention, while behind the scenes…someone possibly sinister is keep their eyes closely on Haruo.
The main characters of “Magikano” are:
THE YOSHIKAWA FAMILY
- Haruo Yoshikawa – The main protagonist who is kind-hearted and a bit naive. Because his sisters tend to use the memory erasing hammer on him, he rarely knows of any magical hijinks going around.
- Maika Yoshikawa – The eldest sister who is overprotective towards Haruo. Almost like an attraction, she wants Haruo all to herself and doesn’t want any other woman close to him. She has a short temper and when she becomes extremely jealous, she turns into a green skinned monster like creature.
- Chiaki Yoshikawa – The athletic sister who is kind-hearted and loves eating food.
- Fuyuno Yoshikawa – The shortest and youngest sister who loves money. But an excellent problem solver.
THE MAMIYA FAMILY
- Ayumi Mamiya – Cursed during her childhood, a young witch…she enters the Earthworld in order for Haruo to lift her curse. Not knowing how to lift the curse, she thinks that it must be getting him sexually attracted to her. So, she does all that she can to do so but knowing that Haruo’s sisters and others are in her way.
- Michiru Mamiya – Younger sister of Ayumi and wants to be head of the family that she will do what she can to prevent her older sister Ayumi from breaking the curse. She and Ayumi don’t really get along.
HIGH SCHOOL FRIENDS & OTHER SUPPORTING CHARACTERS
- Yuri Korosu – The school’s #1 idol and student council president. She has always liked Haruo since they were kids but knowing that Ayumi has entered their school, she and Ayumi become rivals and will do whatever it takes to get Haruo’s attention. She is also a witch who’s hair turns from brown to silver in witch mode.
- Marin Nijihara – A Catholic witch hunter that is often clumsy at times. Feels that she needs to protect Haruo from the witches.
- Rika Anju – A maid sent by Ayumi’s father to help out at the Yoshikawa’s, after Ayumi’s presence tends to create more havoc in the household.
- Hajime Hario – Friend of Haruo who is always trying to find ways to make money and also believes in the supernatural.
- Sora Fujiwara – Friend/sidekick of Hajime and is always taking pictures of whatever. Including the girls in uncompromising poses.
- Hongo Tetsuko – Haruo’s teacher but also seems to know the secrets of the witches.
The following 13-episodes are featured on two DVD’s. Here is a spoiler-less summary of each episode of “Magikano”:
- EPISODE 1 – Magi? She is a Witch? – Ayumi makes her entrance and immediately has Haruo in her sights to get close to him. But Haruo’s sisters will do what they can to protect him.
- EPISODE 2 – Magi? The Student Council President is also a Witch? – Yuri, the Student Council President has always liked Haruo but when she sees Ayumi trying to get close to him, she will do whatever it takes to stop her and will challenge her for Haruo’s affection.
- EPISODE 3 – Magi? The Dangerous Siblings? – Everyone ends up in Haruo’s dreams.
- EPISODE 4 – Magi? It’s Stolen? – When the girls go out and relax in the hot springs, someone sneaks in and steals the girls panties and also Ayumi’s important pendant.
- EPISODE 5 – Magi? A Witch Hunter? – Enter Marin, the witch hunter.
- EPISODE 6 – Magi? There’s a Ghost? – There’s a ghost in the swimming pool and the witches must protect Haruo from it.
- EPISODE 7 – Magi? A Maid is Here? – Ayumi’s father sends a maid named Riku to the Yoshikawa household.
- EPISODE 8 – Magi? A Victory Kiss? – A contest of whoever wins, gets a kiss from Haruo.
- EPISODE 9 – Magi? He’s a Sleeping Prince? – Something is wrong with Haruo and the girls try to find out why.
- EPISODE 10 – Magi? The Cat Panties are Cursed? – When Ayumi wears a pair of panties, she finds out that the panties are cursed with a talking cat. When she starts treating the cat badly, the cat starts to pull pranks to embarrass her. The only way she can have them removed is if Haruo sees them. Of course, all the others think it’s another ploy for Ayumi to get close to Haruo and thus they try to stop her.
- EPISODE 11 – Magi? It’s a Holy Night? – It’s Christmas time and Haruo has been gone quite a bit? Could it be that he’s found someone else special?
- EPISODE 12 – Magi? It’s Time for Awakening? – Michiru makes her move and Haruo’s true nature is revealed.
- EPISODE 13 – Magi? It’s the Final Episode? – Michiru’s plan goes haywire and now everyone must work together to stop ultimate chaos.
VIDEO & AUDIO:
“Magikano” is featured in 4:3 standard definition. For an anime that appeared in 2005, it doesn’t have that digital vibrant color as some anime released around the same time or now. But for the most part, where it succeeds is that each scene is not minimal and does feature a lot of focus on the animation of the characters and some scenes with really good background painting. Character designs and capturing expressions of anger, confusion and happiness is well done. And the zany nature of the series works well with the overall animation. If anything, picture quality is quite clear and I didn’t see any blemishes or any scratches. Nor did I see any compression artifacts. So, picture quality is good.
The audio is presented in English 5.1 Dolby Surround sound and Japanese stereo. For the most part, I chose to listen to the anime series with stereo on all channels. So, audio would be much more immersive during the action sequences. In terms of audio, the English dub has a more teenage approach to the dialogue and although not profane, when the women get upset they yell “bitch” and has a more sexual curve than its Japanese counterpart. In the Japanese counterpart, it fits the junior high school theme much more with the voices. But because of the dialogue and of course, the women showing off their panties or trying to use sex as a way to get to Haruo, personally I found it more sensible to watch it in English, so they seem like high schoolers than junior high students.
Subtitles are in English only.
“Magikano – The Complete Series” comes with the textless opening and ending themes and FUNimation Entertainment trailers.
“Magikano – The Complete Series” is definitely a series that is a mixed bag. During the earlier episodes, although hilarious and fun, the series doesn’t necessarily hook you because there are so many characters and typically, you would want to see some major character development with those characters. Granted, there are only 13-episodes in the series, so things had to speed along quickly in order to have everyone introduced.
By the second half of the series, that is when things start to become more enjoyable because it tends to focus more on Haruo and Ayumi than the other characters. It seems the first half was to setup everyone somehow wanting to be around Haruo but the second half focuses more on Ayumi’s feelings towards Haruo and that her ambition to lift the curse is being replaced by actual love for him.
But part of the problem with this harem anime series is that you have many people who like Haruo. A typical theme of harem anime but in other harem anime, series tend to take place when the male protagonist is either a college student or a young adult. In the case of “Magikano”, the characters are supposed to be junior high students and the anime series wants to retain its sexual vibe.
The series tends to have a more grown up theme with the girls trying to use their bodies to attract Haruo. I can understand if they were older teenagers in high school but not junior high. Especially during episode 10 when Ayumi is trying to rid of her cat panties and wanted to get any reaction from Haruo so she can rid of them. The cat spirit in the panties talking about situations down there and of course, Haruo’s younger sisters then talking about lingerie and panties. So, the fan service may seem inappropriate for some viewers.
But for a harem anime series, it’s funny and hilarious at times as the girls are at each other’s necks in trying to get Haruo’s attention and being the kind of guy he is, naive and not sexually active, it tends to go over his head at times. Does it rank high up there to other harem anime series such as “Love Hina”, “Aoi Yori Aoishi”, “Tenchi Muyo” or “Ranma 1/2”? Not really because those series had may episodes to flesh out character development. With only 13-episodes, the viewer is quickly introduced to characters in each episode and one can only imagine how much we are missing in terms of what was featured in the manga series.
But I was entertained and I did enjoy “Magikano – The Complete Series” for its humor and wackiness. If you are looking for a harem anime series, you may want to give “Magikano – The Complete Series” a chance.
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