The Series (3/5)
It seems in the last year I've watched 3-4 anime series that have involved someone coming into magical powers, and having to learn how to use them. In some of them there is war, in other ones it's just a slice of magical life. I'm not sure if this was a popular anime subgenre pre-Harry Potter, but it seems to be quite a thing now, and just in the last month I've watched the Funimation Blu-ray edition of Tokyo Ravens Season 1 Part 1 (still can't secure a copy of Part 2), and now Magical Warfare.
Magical Warfare tells the story of Takeshi a teenager who after an encounter with Mui, a wizard, finds his latent magic powers awakened, and that he is now a wizard as well. He must now join the wizard kind, and join a faction in preparation for a war that has been dormant for some time, but that is coming back, and may destroy civilization, both magical and real.
I heard a lot of negativity about Magical Warfare before sitting down to watch it. That's fine, because usually an abundance of negative reviews tempers my expectations, and allows me view it for what it is. I will get this out of the way, Magical Warfare is not a masterpiece, it is obviously not original, but to be honest what out there now is? And in all honesty, it's not particularly well done, narratively speaking. By the end of the collection there a lot of loose ends that needed tying up. I have to assume the makers had planned for a second season, but realized soon before completion that it wasn’t in the cards, and tried to resolve the whole ordeal hastily, and in the best way they could.
It is a fun series while it’s on, and does make for a decent time waster, and occasionally that is fine. The animation though similar to a lot of modern anime product, is quite good for what it is. The direction by Yuzo Sato does a decent job of keeping the pacing steady early on, though as stated earlier he does seem to lose control of his own series toward the end, and begins to rush his various plot lines toward a scrambled, and largely unsatisfactory conclusion.
Section 23 presents Magical Warfare in a quite decent 1:78:1 1080p AVC encoded transfer that looks stable, and decent, but nothing special, colors are solid, detail is fine, blacks are good, there is some softness, and lack of depth in places. Overall, it presents the show just fine, however.
The audio is presented in DTS-HD MA 2.0 mixes in both Japanese and English. I primarily kept to the Japanese track, but dipped into the English. Overall, both tracks were solid with no complaints.
Trailers and Clean opening and Closing.
Not the most original anime series you will see this year, Magical Warfare is still a decent enough time waster, but nothing that will blow minds. The A/V is quality, but extras are lacking. RENT.