OK, I made a huge mistake when I watched “Magi: The Kingdom of Magic” is that it is the SECOND season. One should really begin with “Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic”, as it explains and sets up the characters, although it did not really seem to make all that big of a difference, as between flashbacks and expositions, you are more or less brought up to speed on matters. It is loosely based on “1001 Arabian Nights”, as we have Sinbad (he’s the purple hair in the background to the left, next to that tall dude), as well as (right to left) Alibaba, Aladdin, Morgiana and Hakuryuu Ren (OK, it’s a safe bet that the fourth one wasn’t in the books). Oh, that girl with the big boobs at far right? Just ignore her. Yeah, as if. And, yes, she has a seashell bra.
It’s just that when the series starts, everyone is good friends and great pals and marvelous chums and we have some kind of magnificent feast before they all must go on their separate journeys of emotional growth and personal understanding and magical refinement. Of the four, Aladdin has the most arduous journey, as he goes to the city of Magnostadt to learn how to harness and train his power. Think of it like Hogwarts Academy, except there are no dragons. But everyone dresses as you imagine witches to dress (long, flowing robes and ridiculously wide, tall pointy hats). Aladdin is challenged at every turn, but learns about his abilities. But it’s no cakewalk for the others.
Alibaba leaves to improve his swordsmanship and learn magoi manipulation in order to complete his djinn equip with the Yambala Gladiators in the Reim Empire, but like a rube visitor going to the Big Apple for the first time, he gets fleeced in an Empire Minute. Hakuryuu returns to the Kou Empire, where he is the fourth prince, to confront the evil forces that threaten to plunge his country into war with the neighboring lands. Morgiana departs to the Dark Continent to fulfill her dream of visiting her homeland, but encounters situations that threaten to devour her whole.
The problem is that we only make glancing fill-ins for the rest of them, as whatever they are doing is Super Special Crunchy Awesome Secret. So we really forget about them all together, which got annoying for me. What are the other doing, please? The bulk of the episodes focus on Aladdin, but we all get to meet up once again to use our combined powers to make things right.
We also learn the terrible secret that keeps Magnostadt operating as it has, using huge amount of rukh (think of it like The Force) that allows them to use magoi magic. The person who is ostensibly in charge of the land, Matal Mogamett, talks of greatness and light, but has a dark and dangerous agenda.
It is OK for a magic show, but I always get a bit put out when we have new and/or different terms for the magic and whatever powers it. And near the end, it fell into the Dragon Ball Z Syndrome (endless fighting amid endless fighting, when we are not endlessly fighting). It’s just I was watching this show when I was watching ‘Toriko”, so it was episode after episode of endless fighting between the two series and that gets tiring.
I hear what you are saying, “But fights cannot be wrapped up in one or two episodes.” And I agree with that, but when you defeat the enemy, and then they bring in the Big Guns, and you have to bring in your Bigger Guns to defeat them, then some other group shows up with Even Bigger Guns, which means you have to pull out the Ludicrously Even Still Bigger Guns to defeat them, only to run afoul of Insanely Massively Gargantuan Bigger Guns from someone else, I surrender. Oh, you’re not taking prisoners. Crfap!
The conclusion tells me that a third season is in the offing, as we just have not completed all the tasks ahead of us. Perhaps I’ll go back and catch the first season. I will have the time to do so.
On a scale of 1 to 10:
Artwork 7 (Some of the people look intentionally strange)
Plot 7 (Standard ‘learn and grow’ approach)
Pacing 8 (Magic sequences are executed nicely)
Effectiveness 6 (Handcuffed by the extended fight closure)
Conclusion 7 (It reaches a ‘coupler’, but doesn’t really end)
Fan Service 4 (A similar show would be “Gurren Lagaan”)
Overall 7 (Just not handled as well as it should be)
And remember, it’s first run until you’ve seen it. I have the power!