Move over, Cardcaptor Sakura—there is a new magical girl in town, and her name is Magical Girl Ore.
Magical Girl Ore is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Icchokusen Mōkon. It began serialization in Fusion Product’s Comic Be magazine in 2012 and was collected in two tankōbon volumes. The series was renewed for serialization in the same magazine in 2014
The series is a loving parody of the magical girl and idol genres – both of which have plenty of tropes to lampoon. Its core story follows Saki and Sakuyo, who are unpopular young idols that find themselves working as magical girls.
The twist is that they transform into buff guys and are given no powers outside of deadly weapons. There’s something equally funny and unsettling witnessing Saki bludgeon her enemies with a cute rode.
Magical Girl Ore a Parody Every Anime Fan Can Enjoy
There is an equal amount of magical girl and idol jokes, with Saki and her yakuza-type mascot pointing out the similarities between the two industries. Maintaining pure images, not complaining about hazards, and keeping love a secret is all at play – giving it more of a biting view of idols.
At first, it’s really funny to see how quickly everyone accepts her demon-fighting form as normal while she continues to freak out. This joke wears off as the show progresses, settling into a stable level of absurdity to give the story a chance to flesh out its characters.
The show loves to make the joke of how much carnage magical girls would actually have to cause if they didn’t have flashy light effects, it comes up whenever Saki has to save everyday citizens from legions of fluffy demons.
At the start of the show Saki has a typical fairy-like mascot flying around her while she dreams about becoming a magical girl and having her love interest Mohiro fawn over her; only to hilariously awake to a ludicrous reality where her mascot is the mini yakuza guy floating around her and unable to even look at Mohiro without foaming at the mouth like your average horny harem protagonist dude.
Magical girl fans will geek over the callouts to past shows, showing that the staff has done some homework. Saki and Sakuyo sing an off-key version of the Cutie Honey opening, their manager is an adult male version of Cardcaptor Sakura‘s Tomoyo, and Kokoro is as shrewd as Kyuubey.
You don’t have to be a magical girl fan to enjoy the anime’s humor because general tropes are poked fun off too. Late for school? Run while eating a plate of crepes. Tentacles? Better believe there’s a hentai joke. Is a scene losing color? Good, the colorist gets to take a break.
Not all of the jokes hit, but they occur at such a fast pace that you’ll quickly forget any duds. Plus, the staff criticizing senseless ecchi is pretty golden.
Thankfully, Mahou Shoujo Ore delivers much more than a glorious synopsis. It suffers from some of the problems I’ve mentioned earlier, especially since the plot struggled a bit to fulfill a 12-episode run, but it still manages to stand on its own two (muscular) feet.
In fact, it’s a pretty solid parody title, perhaps even finding its way into the classic Mahou shoujo canon someday. Still, the road traveled wasn’t always the most pleasant: things were rocky not only for our protagonists but also for the show’s audience.
Magical Girl Ore hasn’t set up a larger story yet, but it is laying down the foundation of a tantalizing love polygon. In short, Saki has a crush on Mohiro, but Mohiro has a crush on Saki’s manly form.
Sakuyo has a crush on Saki, and we round things out with Hyoue being possessive of Mohiro. Shippers are going to have a lot of fun, especially with Saki and Sakuyo’s shifting genders.
Magical Girl Ore is filled with fun moments and doesn’t get mean-spirited with its parodies. The art style is generic, and the animation quality can be wonky, but the humor makes up for those shortcomings.
[Story: 6/10] Good twists, thoughtful commentary, and pacing issues.
[Art: 6/10] Lots of visual gags, and detailed character designs.
[Sound: 7/10] Nice music, emotive voice performances
[Character: 7/10] Likable and memorable supporting cast.
[Enjoyment: 8/10] Absurd comedy, some repetition.
[Final Score: 6.8/10]
Mahou Shoujo Ore knows the limits of its budget and makes an enjoyable time out of it. I wish the insanity from the first few episodes was more present in the rest of the show, but I feel like I will remember this series more for the time it gave to develop the characters.
Rather than leaving them as one-note stereotypes meant to riff on similar shows, it surprises you and makes you want to see what absurd situation they’ll be put in next.