I rarely pay much attention to episode titles even though I probably should for some anime. Let be it known then that I was super amused with the title of this episode of Magical Girl Raising Project. “Add More Friends!”. To where, you may ask? Why, the graveyard of course!
As I’ve said before, I was never convinced that this was the end for Koyuki/Snow White. I mean, if this anime actually is that daring then neat but I doubted it’d be this early. Instead, I figured there had to be a catch to Ruler’s plan and to MahouIku‘s credit, it did not disappoint in that regard. Ruler ending in last place sure took me by surprise and finding out that the coup was masterminded by Swim Swim caught me off guard even more.
Back in Episode 1, I advised keeping in mind the secret identities of MahouIku‘s cast of characters as the difference in age provides context to a lot of their actions. This is especially the case with Ruler and Swim Swim. Ruler, as it turns out, is a young woman in her early to mid-20s who feels that her self-worth is not acknowledged and this has caused her to pick fights with the chain of command at her office. Knowing that, you can understand why she acts the way she does as Ruler. It really is the escapism that appeals to her; not just the magical powers but the fact that she can lead a gang of magical girls. Even her special ability reflects this desire as she can control anyone she points her scepter to (though I must say, the drawback that she has to stay still is a glaring one).
Swim Swim’s secret identity though is an even bigger can of worms. Remember that little girl Nemurin visited before she died? Turns out that was Swim Swim’s secret identity. I’ll admit: I felt like an idiot not connecting the dots when I first saw this episode. I just thought it was some fan of Ruler which in my defense is plausible given all the talk about the following and reputation magical girls can garner.
Knowing that Swim Swim is a little girl does make her character awfully disturbing and I’m not just saying that since she just betrayed and murdered someone. Being so young, she’s impressionable and she’s really interested in subjects that appeal greatly to children. In her case, it’s the fantasy of being a princess. As a result, Ruler’s regal aesthetic made Swim Swim subordinate and, more importantly, this allowed for the former to leave quite the influence on the latter. That could potentially be very alarming in the grand scheme of things. I mean, Swim Swim doesn’t look like it now but who’s to say Ruler’s toxic attitude won’t live on through her second-in-command? Not to mention, there’s also Nemurin’s encouragement to consider. What’s meant to be innocent advice now serves as a dangerous form of motivation. We’re seeing Swim Swim’s efforts into becoming a princess and it does not bode well for later episodes she’ll appear in.
Man, Disney Princesses and Inception. Who would’ve thought they’d make for a deadly combination.
Joking aside, I got to give points to MahouIku here. So far, it’s making their death scenes count as much as it can. Nemurin’s death already leaves a bad mark on the magical girl profession but that her legacy may leave behind a potentially dangerous character stings even more. It feels like a betrayal to the innocent and kind work Nemurin did as a magical girl. And with Ruler dead, there’s a bit of a power vacuum now. I imagine Swim Swim will try to reclaim leadership and really try to emulate Ruler’s precedent but I don’t know how well that work. Being the brats they are, the Peaky Angels are happy to be leaderless. Maybe Tama will follow depending on how her timidness will drive her.
Also, poor Tama. She’s just trying to be useful and have friends…making her complete the coup was just cruel.
Even though Snow White has been spared (awfully generous of Swim Swim to only take half of her candies), this robbery has left its toll on her. Seeing at first hand that there’ll be magical girls stealing candies, be it from her or from others, is starting to make her feel disillusioned about what it means to be a magical girl. La Pucelle is right though; despite recent events, Snow White needs to keep going. As we begin to see a nastier world of magical girls, someone as pure and noble as Snow White feels necessary. Whether this character can keep it up though is a question MahouIku still needs to answer.
English Dub Comments
I noticed that when Ruler was in her civilian form, Emily Neves just speaks normally and refrains from using the British accent. I figured that would be the case given La Pucelle’s voice though that’s still a smart move on the ADR Crew’s part. It makes sense that the accent is part of Ruler’s gimmick and it would’ve weird if the character always sounds like that.
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2 thoughts on “Magical Girl Raising Project – Ep. 4”
Good observations on the Swim Swim/Ruler/Nemurin dynamic! It’s Ep4 rather than 3, but I always thought of this as MGRP’s “Mami moment”.
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Hey, thanks man!
Huh, I always viewed Nemu’s death as the “Mami moment” but now that you brought it up, Swim Swim’s coup really does put the nail in the coffin on this anime’s battle royale premise.
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