Visually, this anime seemed like something very unique for its genre: A “Mahou Shoujo” where the heroines don’t change clothes; Cool looking powers instead of cute magic; an opening theme sang by an actual pro. Everything combined with a very exotic art design. It sure caught my attention. In the end, it’s a good anime, but the most interesting thing about it is how it came really close to be really lame!
The first impression I had watching this was: “A Saint October gone really wrong”. What I mean is that both have similar concepts but, while in Saint October everything is funny plays and dreams, in this new anime, there is blood, suffering, death, lies, betrayal and more of those great spices.
The themes for this work are tarot cards and destiny. The main characters are a girls-only team of elementary schoolers (?) that obtain mystic powers from tarot cards to fight against creatures that possess the body of humans to evolve into horrible monsters known as Daemonias. Problem is, the first monster that the protagonist Tayou Akari defeated was possessing her cousin, resulting in aHOLY SHIT WTF!!!This really caught me off guard as I really was not expecting a cute moe anime to have a real death. But everything is alright since a very cute little girl erase Akari’s memories of this event.By the way, if there is something that constantly bothers me are the drawing used for the adults, I mean: it’s okey to have kids looking cute and everything, but it’s really disturbing to imagine that this lady’s husband wasn’t throw in jail.Anyway. Now the focus of the anime suddenly changes completely after the first episode to a X-Men style school for girls with tarot cards powers. They spend their time doing nothing more than regular school activities. Apparently, they have the belief that the best way to learn how to use their powers is during real fights…This is REALLY stupid! But explains a lot! Now I know why Akari’s mother is dead! Way to go team!
Now that Akari work for this secret organization, she is assigned to a team of new recruits, just like her. Her new “nakama” are:
The Tsundere girl, Hoshikawa Seira.The Yuri girl, Tsukuyomi Luna.And the kansai-ben girl, Ginka Shirokane.Yeah…They sure are not strong characters, but at least do a good job keeping the power rangers style color scheme. Some more used to japanese language will notice that their names are all linked with their powers, specially Akari’s, since her surname is even part of the title. Is this a weird coincidence? Or their parents saw the future by using tarot card to see what powers they would develop, thus naming them with something related? Probably no, since their surnames are also like that.
In this new school Akari and her friends doesn’t need to investigate potential daemonia victims. The people from the organization find the monsters for them and send them directly to the place where the monster is by putting them into those weird cage things that get throw into a weird-ass portal. Pretty convenient.
By fighting this overgrown Scyther, Akari restore her memories of killing her cousin, what makes her snap. She now has a dilemma: There is no “super-happy-fun” way to purify the victims to save them. She has to kill them in order to protect other citizens.At first she is strongly against the idea, even getting in the way of her “senpais”.She really piss her allies off, but this crow guy say it’s “Hey-Ok”.Akari is very shocked and lost. Even though all memories related to the victims disappear from the minds of normal citizens, Akari is not so pleased with the idea of killing violently an innocent person. It gets worse when she starts to hear voices from the daemonias asking for help. She confess this fact to Luna and says that she has a feeling that there must be a way to save them…This is when this plot became dangerous. The stuff that kept me interested in this anime until now was this killing thing. If you take this out from this plot, it becomes you average Mahou Shoujo anime. This would completely destroy Akari’s great conflict. This one dilema created a great character development right at the first episodes. It would be a shame to discard this plot from the series with a deus-ex-machina-like new magic power. This was a turning point for the series: Convenient happiness or serious business.
Turns out that the pleads for help Akari was hearing were actually the victim asking to be killed. The poor man couldn’t take anymore after he have killed so many innocents, death would be a blessing for him, something Akari was taking from him. This made her realize how foolish she was and she finally gave the victim his eternal rest.That was a close call. I must say that this was a nice prank from the creators. All flags pointed towards Akari being the savior who would awake a new power to rescue the victims, but it seems for the first time in her life her premonition was wrong and she learned an important lesson necessary to become an adult: Life is a bitch!This anime almost suffers from “Madoka Complex”. While the first episode is interesting towards the final minutes, the second one is boring and cliché as hell. However, the third one really saves the series by giving Akari the bitter answer she didn’t want to accept. I will definitely follow this series now! At least while there isn’t a macguffin something to save everyone for great justice!