As those who follow my tumblr know, I’ve embarked on a quest to watch every noteworthy mahou shoujo anime. (Shoot me some recs in the comments if you know any. Here’s MAL.) The natural starting point is Cardcaptor Sakura, which I’ve seen 5 eps of several times in the past three years, always loving it but never progressing (just because I’m me). I’ve been meaning to make a post about the directing in the first episode, but today I’ll be taking a more general approach and looking at how this series is the perfect showcase of why I care so much about creators.
Maybe I just haven’t seen enough mahou shoujo anime and wouldn’t know, but the first two episodes of Heartcatch Precure impressed me with something that I don’t see much in these sorts of anime, and if it’s true that the mahou shoujo genre has a lot of it, then maybe the genre itself is impressive this way. I’m sure someone will let me know in the comments~. Now, these episodes impressed me in a lot of ways that are general to the show – some of my favorite character designs ever, energetic directing, splendid animation (especially during fights~), a balls-tighteningly awesome opening scene, grandiose metal-inspired music, and girls who are just too damn cute – but we’re leaving all that aside for now. I want to talk about the interesting way that this show treats it’s two main characters as individuals.
I may not have seen a great amount of mahou shoujo anime, but I’ve at least seen some, and I’ve also seen a lot of similar shounen anime that utilize the same kind of monster-of-the-week formula that mahou shoujo usually does. What I usually see in MOTW shows is that if there is a character who the protagonist has to fight (be it directly or through bad guys controlling them), then their purpose in the episode is usually to show the main character something about themselves, or conversely, for the main character to show them something about themselves.
If you follow the anime industry (or alternatively are a follower of omoikane) then you’ve likely read about the legitimization of Crunchyroll. To summarize what has happened, the anime streaming site Crunchyroll made a deal with TV Tokyo that at the start of 2009, they would delete ALL anime that they didn’t have permission to show, licensed or otherwise, and only stream shows with legal permission. What has this led to, and what has changed?