Sunday, April 10, 2016

10 Second Anime - Flying Witch - Episode 1

Flying Witch follows Makoto who comes to live with her cousins to finish high school. She's gentle, slightly ditzy, talks to her cat and just happens to be a real witch. Season Premiere.

Episode 1 - "It's Been Six Years."

First Thoughts.

Allow me to let out a long relaxing sigh. Siiiigh... This show is Slice of Life Healing Anime. It's been a while since we had a series like this. Usually in a Healing Anime scenario, just a character coming home after a few years is enough of a premise as that person reconnects with family, old friends and old memories from the location. We have all of that with Makoto coming to live with cousins she hasn't seen in 6 years, but of course, every individual show needs its own personal hook. The title says it all, Makoto is a Flying Witch!

There's subtle magic and it's treated like no big deal. There's no fighting, no demonic invasions, no clannish conspiracies. Just a high school girl with a bad sense of direction who happens to be a witch. Siiigh... Relaxing.


What makes a successful Healing Anime is the cast of characters and how they relate to each other. Makoto comes to Hirosaki with her best friend. A witch's best friend is her cat, of course.

Chito has been with Makoto a long time, but still gets a little frustrated with how bad her sense of direction is and her little bouts of air-headedness.

Makoto's cousins are regular people. Her male cousin Kei, who's the same age, is laconic, knows pretty much everything about Makoto and has a wry sense of humor.

The younger girl cousin Chinatsu plays off that humor with the easy comfort of siblings who get along well. No Makoto, Chinatsu does not think you're her long lost mother.

Chinatsu doesn't know Makoto like Kei does, so it's no surprise that she's curious about her. Especially after overhearing her have a conversation with her cat!

Well, now we know that Chinatsu has a price for getting along with strangers. Bribe her with donuts!

Thankfully, the charm of seeing a witch levitate on a bamboo broom and then flying around with her has made Chinatsu Makoto's number one fan.

That scene was done remarkably well. Just the casual implementation of magic with no flashes of light or magical girl transformations totally fit the atmosphere of this Healing Anime.

Kei has apparently seen all this before. His friend Nao has not.

I like this addition of a girl who will be Makoto's local counterpart. Same age, same class, Nao will be the contemporary lens through which the hometown reacts to Makoto the casual witch.

It's no big deal for a witch to be scrabbling around some weeds looking for a rare herb, but modern girls in school uniforms shouldn't be doing that. Like I said, Nao is a great character to show us what local girls would make of witchy behavior.

She's still a nice cute girl who will loyally stick around and find a nice cat to play with.

The Mandrake.

Sure, flying on a broom is proper behavior for a witch, something that would impress the normals. However, the mandrake root scene showed how different Witch culture is to the rest of Japan.

Makoto thinks like a witch. A rare mandrake root would be a great gift to another witch, but to a normal person, a screaming creepy tuber is decidedly not.

After watching the latest OVA for Aria, I've been nostalgic for Healing Anime and it looks like Flying Witch is going to make a nice addition to that genre.

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