Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei ep 1-4 first impressions

Do not be fooled by this picture!

Do not be fooled by this picture!

4 episodes into the most hyped show this season, and it’s been nothing but exposition…

Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei - 04 - Large 38 Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei - 02 - Large 21

I understand you need to set-up your universe, but what’s introduced so far is either too complicated or too simplistic. On one hand we have a system of magic based around technological code that’s given much detailed explanations from start to finish. On the other hand, we have discrimination among the differences between magical talents that is so black-and-white a toddler could understand it. And then there’s several details such as testing inaccuracies that, while providing answers to the how the society is run, don’t play a single part in the overall story. Simply put, all this detail only helps maintain its own logic rather than invite us into a new world and keep us interested.

Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei - 02 - Large 26 Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei - OP - Large 06

This focus on dialogue wouldn’t bother me if it weren’t for how cliche the rest of the show is. If you take out all the magical-science jargon and themes of discrimination, all that’s left is your typical high school romcom/harem. Everyone seems tailor-made to fit a specific stereotype and, while certainly interacting with each other, no one seems to have a specific arc to follow on. For example, Tatsuya is certainly tolerable compared to other attempts at making a smart badass, but he’s not that interesting as a character aside from admitting he saw breasts when asked upfront. It doesn’t help that the closest we have to a plot line is Tatsuya’s rise to power as he grabs the attention of other kids. Sounds exciting, but it’s essentially being promoted to magical hall monitor.

Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei - 03 - Large 04 Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei - 03 - Large 34

Frankly, the smartest aspect of this show involves the actual fights. They’re not only fast-paced, but focus on quick-thinking and controlled usage rather than a measure of power. Moreover, it gives Tatsuya some leverage as the calculated badass without boring us with countless infodumps. The scientific approach to magic here means tons of theories have to be thrown, but these few moments make them interesting because we see how it’s used before getting a lecture. Best example of this would be cancelling other’s spells with interference from two CADs with opposite spell types; a complicated explanation, but can be simplified to making magic useless.

Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei - 03 - Large 18

There’s enough interesting ideas to keep me watching, but so far i’m ready to label this the most overhyped show of this season. There just isn’t anything memorable or exciting that’s happened in this show so far. I’ve been promised by Light Novel fans that the plot starts moving later on, so hopefully the ball starts rolling in later eps. After all, I’m the only writer that’s active for the Spring Season.

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About theweirdman

I'm a long time follower of anime, and will continue to do so for years to come

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