usagi ☆ミ's Reviews > 魔法少女まどか☆マギカ 3 [Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica 3]

魔法少女まどか☆マギカ 3 [Mahou Shoujo Madoka Magica 3] by Hanokage
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Mar 15, 2011

it was amazing
bookshelves: 2011, manga-and-comics, witches-and-whores, teenage-shennanigans, own-finished-copy, own, in-japanese, magical-girl-majokko, magical-reality, best-of-11, reviewed
Read 2 times. Last read July 8, 2011 to July 9, 2011.

** spoiler alert ** Not going to lie, here, but the manga version of the end of this series is nearly as breathtaking as the one aired right after the Great Kanto-Tohoku Earthquake in March. I can’t emphasize enough the importance of this series in post-earthquake Japan – a guy even volunteered for the suicide mission of going into the Fukushima reactors to stabilize the troubled rods in March because he had hope after seeing the end of the series on TV. And now, reading the manga version (which, of course, in many ways can’t compete with moving pictures and colors) has made me fall in love with this series all over again. And this is why it’s made my best of 2011 (and best of the decade so far) list. Note: if you haven’t seen the final episodes (eps 11-12) and/or read this volume of the manga, you’re going to get spoiled.

It needs to be said: at the end of the day, “Madoka Magica” is not a romantic story of magical girls, magic powers, and fluffy dreams. It is a story of loss, repeated loss, and the choice of what to do with those feelings of grief. You can choose to believe in yourself and your friends, regardless of all of the hits that keep coming, or you choose to lose hope entirely, and reject the rest of the world in favor of your own personal (even if tiny) revenge.

This is also a story of questioning if there is such thing as preordained fate (Homura’s endless time-travel to save Madoka from the fate of becoming a magical girl), and if interfering in that preordained fate just screws things up more than what was originally intended in the first place. Kyuubey says it himself in this volume: because Homura chose to become a Magical Girl, chose to endlessly pursue Madoka throughout time and space, this world and all parallel worlds because she thought she was saving her, she unwittingly created the most powerful of Witches of all time. It begs the question – do we have our fate planned out? If so, should we choose to accept whatever comes our way? Or should we fight it and risk something as possibly drastic as what Homura faces with Madoka and her alternate Witch-self?

This is what I love about this show. Nothing is easy, and everything is a risk-benefit analysis. It makes you think. Yeah, it’s got cutely-designed girls, but that’s not what it’s about. Not in the least. Once you lose hope (and you’re a Magical Girl), your Soul Gem turns to a Grief Seed and poof, you’re a Witch. There’s no reversing the process. There’s no going back. There’s no way to regain that lost innocence and lost blind faith that you once had before. And in many ways, in real life, this is very true – once you’ve lost hope in something, anything, it’s really almost impossible to get that previous innocence back.

I admire Madoka, because of her fearlessness and innocence in terms of not being afraid of what may come down the road. She saw what happened to her friends, but became a Magical Girl anyway, even if she knew she was going to be facing off with her alternate-self in order to save the world. I’m not sure I’d have the balls to do that. She lost so much, and yet, she didn’t lose hope. She nearly drowned in grief, but once she saw what it did to her friends, she managed to pick herself back up and believe once more. She even sacrificed her own bodily existence to reshape the universe so that girls wouldn’t hurt so much as to become Witches. Now that takes guts, and if I were in her shoes, I’m not sure I’d have the faith to go on.

So yeah, you can see I’m pretty passionate about this series. I cried throughout reading the last two chapters of this volume, as well as the last two episodes of the show, because I wanted to recapture my own faith in everything, my own innocence – and not in a religious sense, but in a sense of not just having to survive, but believing there’s something greater out there for me so that I can keep on fighting for it. It’s something I’ve been working on since I quit self-harming myself ten years ago, and it’s a constant struggle. “Madoka Magica” is one of those series that, even though it’s complete fantasy in terms of setting, can make you want to recapture your own ability to believe in the best of others regardless of what the truth might be.

So thank you, Madoka and co., for being there, and for giving so many hope after such a shitty first half of 2011. I sincerely hope that this series gets picked up for US licensing (since it’s Kodansha-published, I think there may be a chance for that), so that Madoka’s message gets out to all.

But don’t think that this is the end of the “Madoka” universe – not in the least. There are two more manga series, “Oriko Magica” and “Kasumi Magica: The Innocent Malice” still in production and serialization at the moment in Japan. I’ll be reviewing those soon, too. Hopefully we’ll get as much as we can before Magica Quartet calls it quits for this series and moves onto something else.

So if you want something that will make you think, laugh, and cry without being ridiculously sappy or romantic, go for “Madoka”. This is one choice in reading material you will not forget. I know I won’t.

(posted to librarything, goodreads, and
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Quotes usagi ☆ミ Liked

“Kyubey: When you decide to die for the good of the universe, call me anytime. I'll be waiting.”
Magica Quartet, Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Vol. 03

“Madoka: I think it's because of your wish to protect me all this time that I am what I am now. And it's that "me" who has finally found an answer. So please... trust me.”
Magica Quartet, Puella Magi Madoka Magica, Vol. 03

Reading Progress

March 15, 2011 – Shelved
July 8, 2011 – Started Reading
July 8, 2011 – Shelved as: 2011
July 8, 2011 – Shelved as: manga-and-comics
July 8, 2011 – Shelved as: witches-and-whores
July 8, 2011 – Shelved as: teenage-shennanigans
July 9, 2011 – Finished Reading
August 3, 2011 – Shelved as: own
August 3, 2011 – Shelved as: own-finished-copy
August 3, 2011 – Shelved as: in-japanese
August 3, 2011 – Shelved as: magical-girl-majokko
August 3, 2011 – Shelved as: magical-reality
August 3, 2011 – Shelved as: best-of-11
September 10, 2011 – Shelved as: reviewed
October 5, 2012 – Shelved (Other Paperback Edition)
October 5, 2012 – Shelved as: 2012 (Other Paperback Edition)
October 5, 2012 – Shelved as: in-japanese (Other Paperback Edition)
October 5, 2012 – Shelved as: own-finished-copy (Other Paperback Edition)
October 5, 2012 – Shelved as: magical-girl-maj... (Other Paperback Edition)
October 5, 2012 – Shelved as: manga-and-comics (Other Paperback Edition)
October 5, 2012 – Shelved as: magical-reality (Other Paperback Edition)
December 4, 2012 – Started Reading (Other Paperback Edition)
December 4, 2012 – Shelved as: best-of-12 (Other Paperback Edition)
December 4, 2012 – Finished Reading (Other Paperback Edition)

Comments (showing 1-1 of 1) (1 new)

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Nora Terrific review!

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