Animation: Good
Depth: Fair
Design: Fair
Characters: Weak
Story: Bad

Type: TV   (26 episodes)

Vintage: 2014

Category:

» sci-fi
Verdict: weak
Review:

Irregular at Magic High School


Summary: >

In the year 2095 technology advanced to the point where it's nearly indistinguishable from the traditional idea of magic. At a magic high school academy students are segregated in two groups. "Blooms" are the top students with high magical aptitude, of which Miyuki joins their ranks. Lesser magically skilled students are called "weeds", and looked down upon. Miyuki's brother Tatsuya is among them.

Although Tatusya is considered a weed, he seems to have unusual talents in just about all areas. Perhaps Tatsuya can help bridge the gap between the two kinds of students.

(Note: there's a lot more "story" but it doesn't go anywhere so I won't bother explaining it.)


Thoughts: >

Appearances can be deceiving. In this case there appears to be something like a story buried under sci-fi stuff, yet by the end of The Irregular at Magic High School, I still didn't know what it was. Even though this anime is better to skip, it may be worth watching for the wrong reasons.

It's nothing new, but the technology becomes magic concept was presented well, and showed potential in the futuristic environment. It's visually appealing too. Then during the various "explanations" I realized this anime shovels heaps of techno-babble on the viewer, as if that were a form of depth. Technical feats come down to hand waving "it's magic.. technology".

The characters are generic and bland, but most aren't particularly annoying. Romances abound, but it's romance for the sake of romance, as pairs seem chosen at random, lacking enough of a bond to feel sincere. The one (pseudo) romance which shouldn't be happening is the one between Miyuki and Tatsuya. The whole incest but not quite incest stuff really drags the show down. And then there's Tatsuya himself.

Everything revolves around how awesome Tatsuya is, aside from his "weakness", which is a convenient tool for him to be the misunderstood underdog. Otherwise how could he prove how wonderful he is to the non believers soon to worship him? His unbreakable "cool" demeanor does well masking his lack of personality - although this makes mysterious why everyone adores him. Tatsuya's god like stature in this anime became amusing in it's own way. Episode after episode I'd get a laugh about how pretty much every situation came back to showing how amazing he is.

[+] I can't stop talking about this guy

How awesome is Tatsuya? Dude you have no idea. Pretty much every girl has the hots for him. In one story a couple eventually gets together, however the girl admits she fell in love with Tatsuya FIRST, but decided it wouldn't work out because he's fantastic and she'd never keep pace. No, I'm not making that up. One episode mentions no one ever mastered personal flight, so by the end of the episode Tatsuya does just that. Only the military can field devices which can nullify magic. Except Tatsuya who found his own method, but doesn't go public with it in case it fell into the wrong hands. Did I mention he has a secret military side job?

An interesting thing I observed: Tatsuya maintains a completely flat expression. How is in any way charismatic? Yet watching other characters, they all brighten to his presence.

The first third isn't bad, although vague. The next third is the "Nine schools competition". This is like magical sport Olympics. I wanted to like this part, but it was simply too dull. By this point the "mystery" and "intrigue" is fairly thick. Plots, conspiracies, secret organizations, etc. None of which matters. Saying Irregular at Magic High School is "complex" is like dumping a pile of broken circuit boards into a cardboard box and saying it's a computer. It's not just a matter of gathering components. They have to be assembled the right way and DO SOMETHING.

By the last third I was bored. That seemed strange as the show shifted towards violent content. Shouldn't it be the opposite? But there's no reason to give a damn about any of it. Episodes are spent battling some "foreign group", but at this point it's clear the story will go nowhere with sprawling fits of pointless fighting. "Explanations" are dispensed with altogether. Super high school students can destroy anything with uber powers just because. Of course by then Tatsuya ascended to superman status (including flight). I'm like, what is this guy, Jesus? Then he heals people and brings them back to life. So... yeah, I guess he is.

Anime has plenty of wish fulfillment stories and characters, but this one is absurd to the point of wanking. Tatsuya may be amusing for all the wrong reasons, but nothing else in this anime measures up. It's not clear at first, but heaps of garbage technology obscure the fact that Irregular at Magic High School has very little story, and certainly not 26 episodes worth. Don't bother.


Screen Caps: >

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reviewed by archen in 2015