Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei Ep. 13: The girls are in first place? More like Tatsuya is in first place…

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Oh good, another lopsided score because this anime doesn’t seem to understand that keeping things close makes sports seem more exciting. Sometimes, blow-outs do happen, but… but wait a minute! This is a fictional story! It’s almost as if… as if I could make it so that these events seem close — after all, this is all made-up! — thereby creating tension!… naaaaaaah. Anyway, it’s that time of the week again, folks. It’s time to watch the lamest Gary Stu of them all.

— As if you needed a reminder that you’re watching a Gary Stu in action, what’s the first thing you see after the opening credits? Mayumi exclaims, “I’m so impressed, Tatsuya!” Wasn’t it Shizuku who actually competed? Isn’t she the one who won? No.. Tatsuya won. No ifs and/or buts about it.

— Oh, Mayumi congratulates the actual players later… after Tatsuya reminds her to do so. The Lord sayeth… and it shall be so.

— Mari: “But at the same time, your own achievement can’t be denied.” Oh, we’ve made that very clear from the very start of the series, trust me! As such, the dick-sucking continues: “This feat, namely, all of our players finishing on the podium, owes much to your engineering skills.”

— That’s right! He came up with a new type of magic, and it’ll be registered officially as well! He’ll just pass on having it registered under his own name thanks to Tatsuya’s one “flaw:” it takes him too long to activate long sequences or some stupid shit like that. But of course, he’s super fast at short spells, so it’s not even a real flaw. It’s a fucking trade-off. A flaw is like a scar on my forehead. There’s no upside to it. There’s just a scar on my forehead. No, I don’t get magical powers to compensate. I repeat: it’s a flaw and nothing more. On that note, Tatsuya’s “flaw” is thus no flaw at all.

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— Who does Mayumi encourage for the later matches? The athletes themselves? No. She hopes that Tatsuya can keep it up. Well damn, woman. If you keep riding him like this, he’ll be up all night.

— Just to reiterate how utterly pointless this entire competition is, here’s what one of the representatives from Third High School ends up asking: “Are you saying that it wasn’t due to those three girls’ personal skills?”

— “I’ll bet that the engineer in charge of the girls’ speeding shooting must have mind-blowing skills.” Oh, we ain’t here just to blow minds.

— They’re now talking about the rifle Shizuku had used and how it was “cutting-edge technology.” There’s actually a big debate in the real world about whether or not technology might adversely affect the integrity of sporting events. Still, an athlete’s personal skill level determines much of his or her performance, and technology can only give you a small edge. The debate is whether or not that small edge is substantial enough to raise any real concerns. That’s the real world, though. You get the feeling here, however, that the devices are everything. Yeah, yeah, they think Shizuku is decent with magic, but at best, it’s a passing remark. They completely trash the other two girls. On the other hand, the characters are gushing on and on and on about the rifle just like how Mahouka typically gushes on and on and on about magic. Just the fact that technology accounts for even 50% of an athlete’s performance is ludicrous, but who’s to say Tatsuya’s engineering genius isn’t accounting for even more? “B-but it’s a futuristic world, so technology should matter!” Sure! Then make it a competition between competing technologies and their engineers then. Don’t call it a fucking sporting competition, and have the entire thing come down to Tatsuya’s Gary Stu brilliance.

— Blah blah blah, a bunch of stuff about how a prototype from a year ago had been refined into an awesome rifle for Shizuka: “If all that was made possible by an engineer’s skill…” Sluuuuurp.

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— “It’s the work of a beast.” Jesus Christ…

— The scene changes and–… oh look! Another girl is about to compete! We still haven’t seen a single guy do anything in the past three episodes. Scenes after scenes in which the characters fellate Tatsuya. When Miyuki is onscreen, she’s either trying to jump her brother’s dick or boob-shame a girl from having a larger rack albeit completely covered by her shirt. And to top it all off, at a unisex sporting competition, we don’t get to see a single guy compete. Unisex, my ass. Remember when Tatsuya had some stupid sword created just for Leo? Remember that? Yeah, I fucking don’t. Because someone out there probably thinks it’d be too gay to watch guys compete. Oh no, imaginary males on my screen! I now want to have sex with men instead of just wanting to become Tatsuya!

— Have you noticed we’ve focused on just the same few events over and over? Battle boarding, speed shooting, and later, breaking ice pillars. Oh, we’ve seen or heard of the other events… very briefly. The anime keeps coming back to these sports, though. Some big, prestigious competition and yet there are hardly anything to watch. Why? Oh, I don’t know. Probably because when you drone on and on about magic in a way that completely demystifies it, it’s likely a sign that you lack imagination. So naturally, you make your story about a super powerful high school boy, and he has an imouto who dotes upon him. The other girls want him too, though, to the point that the other guys hate him. And oh yeah, China is evil. What? Is it too original for you guys? Yeah, Mahouka‘s too original, huh?

— Haha, look at this cheap ass shit. Tatsuya’s special strategy for Honoka is to have her cast an optical spell at the start of the match, thereby blinding her opponents right from the get-go. It is then smooth-sailing for the girl the rest of the way. Much skill. Very sporting. Greatness awaits.

— Honoka’s now crying tears of happiness because she’s managed to win a match. All thanks to our Lord and savior! For some reason, Miyuki looks a bit glum off to the side. I’m sure it has something to do with her brother. Every single action she takes has something to do with her brother. She wouldn’t even piss without his permission.

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— Oh, we finally hear again about how the guys are doing… long after they’ve already competed. Just once an episode, though. Wouldn’t want to even hear about the guys, y’know? Wouldn’t want my ears to turn gay and start listening to Madonna.

— Some faceless men in suits are now bitching about how First High is going to win the whole thing even though they had tried to rig the whole thing. The best part is when some guy says, “And we drew an especially large crowd this time.” Damn, if only Mahouka had the chops to show us such a thing!

— Wait, actually, the real best part is how these chumps are going to die over some high school competition. They couldn’t even rig a professional event and draw more money that way, apparently. Seriously, why would powerful gangsters anywhere bother with a sports event featuring kids? Oh wait, you’re going to tell me that a high school competition in Mahouka‘s universe is somehow bigger than actual pros, huh? ‘Cause that would be rich.

— In the following scene, we see that Miyuki has paid a visit to her brother’s room again, but the way he speaks to her is more like an exasperated parent than a sibling. More importantly, however, why is Miyuki here? Meh, it’s some stupid shit about a tiff between Tatsuya and his aunt. He casually goes on and on about how he can totally pwn her in battle, but someone else would just take her place. Uh-huh, tell us more about your power fantasies, dude.

— In any case, Miyuki dives into her oniichan’s manly chest and cries, “I’m on your side, remember…” What a touching moment that’s all about Tatsuya again.

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— Time to break ice pillars. Shizuka is dressed in some traditional get-up for it too, a fact which exasperates Tatsuya. He remarks that it’s more like a fashion show out there. He may not realize it, but this is just another way for the story to devalue these girls’ skills. Honestly — honestly — although we’ve seen nothing but the girls compete, at the same time, we don’t even bother to respect the girls’ skills. First, their victories are heavily attributed to Tatsuya’s engineering genius. And now, this. The girls are using this opportunity to play dress-up. An actual athlete would care very much whether or not her outfit might hinder her performance. If there’s even a slightest chance the outcome would be influenced ever so slightly, an athlete wouldn’t risk it. Why the fuck would she? Do you see Olympic swimmers go out there in a two-piece bikini for style points? But hurr, these sleeves are on the short side, yo! We then see the other girls compete in equally ostentatious outfits. Great! All the attention paid to the female athletes are because they’re cute shoujos and nothing more, but you probably already knew that, huh?

— Plus, nothing like the competition starting only for us to see the two characters grimace and furiously press the buttons on their wrists at each other. Slowly, ever so slowly, the ice pillars start to crack. Exciting! Grr, I’m pressing my buttons harder than you! Marvel at my skills!

— In a flashback scene, Honoka praised the Shiba siblings’ magical prowess. Meanwhile, the audience gets to watch as our resident Gary and Mary Sue used their magic to slide some platform across the ground. So beautiful. They should’ve sent a poet…

— Finally, we get to see Miyuki compete. As if to one-up Shizuka, she’s in a miko outfit. She then gives this stupid face right before she casts a spell, but I’m sure fans are just creaming themselves over this superfluous pose:

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— Miyuki’s competitor desperately hammers away at her wrist. Hammer faster, woman! Press those buttons harder! Show us your skills! But alas, it is to no avail. We’ve just witness an amazing feat of athletic prowess from Miyuki. She poses, then she sticks her hand out, proving once again that any fiction featuring magic takes all the fun out of sports. Y’see, our Mary Sue has just cast a spell that even Rank A magicians struggle with! Unfortunately, I have no idea how strong Rank A magicians are, therefore, this frame of reference is utterly useless! But nevermind that, ’cause the opponent’s ice pillars have all been destroyed in an instant. What a shebeast.

— Wait, wait, we’re starting to praise the girls a little too much, if you know what I mean. Let’s dial it back a bit. Let’s dial it back to sucking Tatsuya’s dick again: “That spell of Shiba and Shizuku’s was a variation on resonance, wasn’t it? So Shiba did design that Activation Sequence?” There it is!

— Meanwhile, the guys look on with jealousy. I would too. According to the anime, they don’t even exist. Shun’s so bitter about it, however, that he storms off. In case you’ve forgotten all about it, our resident asshole will remind you what this anime is truly all about: “I’m going to prove once and for all that Blooms are superior to Weeds!” Once again, it’s the dirty boys who are bigots. Once again, the cute girls are angels who wouldn’t dare lord their superior social status over the Weeds like them evil boys.

— Ugh, it sucks so much to be poor Tatsuya, though. Getting all this praise from the girls, making the boys jelly, incurring the wrath of bigots like Shun… won’t you… won’t you feel sorry for our modern day Rosa Parks? He’s just a tired, ol’ Weed who’s taken a front row seat wherever he’s gone, from the Student Council to this athletic competition, and dem Blooms are not happy one bit!


23 Replies to “Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei Ep. 13: The girls are in first place? More like Tatsuya is in first place…”

  1. You should remember what you pointed out about there being no boys being shown competing, let’s just say you will notice something once they do show them, the “Our guys might be in need of a boost” part and the Morisaki part lead to something you will want to write about.

  2. Wow, why even bother having a super flashy setting like magic and humanity at the verge of apocalypsis? If everything is about life school and fellating a Gary Stu! Oh, they wanted to outstand those other harem slice of life highschool setting anime that already are filling up japanese media?
    I mean, at least the author could have used an original (as if it was possible!) concept for it. He just blatantly stole the idea from Soul Rider series (Jack L. Chalker). Magic used through mathematical ability? well, at least Chalker made it interesting, funny, mysterious, logical in a non-boring neckbeard way and compelling!
    His version even sounds factible in real world, if there are energy in everything, is just a matter of knowing how to twist it into something different according to one´s will and that´s all! Hell, I wish they did it an animation instead of this shitty abomination…
    Anyway, your posts are great! I don´t need to watch this ugly expression of loneliness and women deprivation to know how bad it is. And surely the author abhors men because he thinks they are stealing all those poor weak and needy chicks that are anxious to flock him (at least in his imagination). That, or he´s homophobic, maybe both.

    1. He just blatantly stole the idea from Soul Rider series

      I don’t like the show, but I don’t know about that…

      1. Well, I can explain the basics, maybe a few spoilers here and there, but it doesn´t matter unless you are interested in reading the book. Also, since it is a book series, maybe the author is so dummie he didn´t even read it so is just a big casualty, which by itself is a freaking hell of a big casualty!
        But, whatever, in Soul rider we have this kind of magic power, where only a few special people can use, in the form of whatever they want! Forget about Harry Potter or whatever other modern day fictional magician! This is real! They could create their own little worlds, with their own little enviroments/physics/rules, whatever. They governed over that small portion of civilization (yeah, their own civilization!) and since other powerless people were in need of a place to live, they would just subjugate themselves into whatever sick shit the owner (magician) would dictate. But that´s something Mahouka didn´t stole or whatever the case (fortunately).
        Then this special people just neede to have a pretty decent mathematical skill, that was somehow inherited, not just the skill itself, but also certain affinity with said magic.
        But then, by the end of some book, we get to know that magic was in reality the raw energy of that world, like, you know, in everything there are energy, only that in that world it was raw, no form no shape, no application. So in the past, humans created certain machines that could use said energy and with the use of algorithmic programation of sorts, it will create stuff, real stuff that the humans could use to live and such.
        In the end, the concept is simple, but the way it interacted with the story and characters and everything else was a kind of a given. Nobody was always telling you “uuuh, they used this kind of programation and such!” (so dumb!) but also, the curious part was that the humanity evolved to be able to communicate with said machines just by desire, they thought about the program, like what real hackers do, but somewhat different (don´t remember details) and then, the machines would traduce it into something real, and automatic process made in just fractions of seconds. You won´t see the process, only the result. Fantastic.
        Soul Rider was initially a sort of fantasy story, but ended being a Sci-Fi, and better than that, it involved post apocalyptic world, the conquering of space, struggles with aliens, the same human issues we can all see in our daily life (tyrants and dictators, yeah) and many other thematics and such.
        Whew, so, maybe Mahouka just took the fancy novelty, or maybe not, whatever, they suck, LOL
        And sorry for the long explanation!

        1. You don’t have to explain the book series. All I meant is that I doubt Mahouka’s author has read it, so it wouldn’t really be blatantly stealing.

  3. Seeing that top pic answered the biggest question about this show and arc, “Why the fuck anyone would be worried in losing” there is no tension at all. I’s just “Tatsuya wins” the whole time. They are not characters, they are all extensions of Tatsuya,

  4. “Sure! Then make it a competition between competing technologies and their engineers then. Don’t call it a fucking sporting competition, and have the entire thing come down to Tatsuya’s Gary Stu brilliance.”
    Motorsports are still considered sports, right?

    Anyway, the bookies reveal is super lame.

    1. Wait until you see how ou Lord and Saviour deals with them, anyone expecting a better conclusion than the first arc will be dissapointed.

    2. He just blatantly stole the idea from Soul Rider series

      So long as the athletes primarily determine the outcome of the competition.

  5. MAL comments amuse me:
    “I actually believe CAD is a metaphor for penis/vagina by now. Just replace the words with it and change “calibrating” to “penetrating” and you know what kind of power fantasy you are watching. It really sounds like a bad fanfic from then.”

  6. Why do you even watch this show E Minor?

    It’s such shit beyond any hope of saving.

    Why don’t you blog about the rest of Penguindrum episodes. Each post was a great read, I enjoyed it very much. I finished the series but would still like to read your thoughts. Off-topic to the max.

  7. I’ll be honest, this show is probably the second-worst anime I’ve ever seen (that distinction goes to Togainu no Chi). Oh I’ve trudged through my fair share of wretched awfulness in the past, but even the sleaziest, the laziest, the most nonsensical are usually backed by a team of people who can manage basic cinematography and give the illusion that something is actually happening we should care about. Even No Game No Life. Even Dragonar. They understand that 19 minutes of other characters expositing on how mundane feats are accomplished by magic and 3 minutes of effortless, sterile “conflict” with no stakes does not make for good viewing.

    Mahouka… doesn’t. It radiates unadulterated badness. We have scenes where a room of strangers praises the main character with a dozen permutations of the same comment for an entire five minutes, then ends on “this is going to be tough for us”, accomplishing nothing we didn’t already know. We have “action” scenes where two people stand still on podiums and glare at one another real hard while a bunch of ice pillars fall apart between them to an invisible force. Riveting!

    1. Togainu no Chi… now that’s a name I haven’t heard in a long, long time. Anyway, I get what you’re saying, but Dragonar also featured tentacle rape at the drop of a hat, so I hesitate to see it in any form of positive light.

      1. Well… at least tentacle rape is a failing of…
        Subject matter? Tact? Taste? Common decency? All of the above? There is no positive light to Dragonar, save for the fact that it’s now over.

        What I mean to say is that Mahouka sucks at entertainment in general, and so consistently to boot! It nails terrible. It knocks terrible out of the park! It doesn’t need to offend my basic sensibilities like Dragonar to be terrible. It doesn’t need to build up a broken setting, drown me in cliches, or look like it was put together with construction paper and glue. It’s terrible formed from whole cloth; ready, willing, and immediately apparent from the first few lines of dialogue of the first episode. It’s like some horrific apex predator of bad anime, sculpted from a hundred generations of self-insert wish-fulfillment fan fiction.

        Not since Togainu have I found myself whispering “It’s so bad… why is it so bad? How is it so bad?” for minutes straight while a scene which awkwardly made a point that didn’t need making two minutes ago proceeds to last another five.

  8. Not only am I surprised that you were on such a roll with this update, mate, but I’m shocked you managed to turn that boring as shit episode into something hilarious. Haha
    Funny how when it’s a Gary Stu anime all the guys are evil, and when it’s a shoujo anime all the girls are evil. Can’t have too many likable characters of the same sex, if any! They’re competition, after all!

    And no one competes with the great and holy Tatsuya.
    NO ONE

    1. And no one competes with the great and holy Tatsuya.
      NO ONE

      And the sad thing is, defenders claim he’s supposed to be a figurative incarnation of some god, and this is why he is so invincible. Sure, but that doesn’t change the fact that infallible gods are boring as fuck to read about or watch. Every time a good story features a god, the god has been flawed in some way. Movies literally about the infallible Almighty God aren’t good. Seriously, try to name one. On the other hand, movies about his son’s struggle to understand his role as humanity’s savior are — lo and behold — potentially interesting! The Last Temptation of Christ is one great example. Unfortunately, there’s no struggle here. We’re watching an almighty god, and it’s as boring as expected. No amount of “His godliness is intentional” changes the fact that it’s fucking dull as shit. Unless, of course, you have the gall to imagine yourself in Tatsuya’s shoes, then you’re probably too busy wanking to notice how boring the story is.

      1. Invincible heroes or gods work only when the writer is trying to use these characters as a mean to discuss something else (eg, Sandman or Lucifer comics). They don’t work when 1> Stories focuses on war & heroes are supposed to be weapon & 2> When they are written in a story with very thin plot content & biased world veiw.

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