FIRST LOOK – As the new anime season started, there seems to be a great deal of popularity on the anime series The Ancient Magus’ Bride and surely enough, I believe that popularity was well earned by this new show. A new title from Wit Studio (Shingeki no Kyojin, Owari no Seraph) the anime falls upon the slice-of-life, magic-fantasy genre as the story is set in modern Britain.
If you do not take kindly to spoilers, avert your eyes!
This anime series has been, by far, interesting in regards to its setting and plot. It starts off with Chise, a teenage girl, as she sells herself off to an auction after being repeatedly abandoned by various family members due to her unique ability of seeing magical creatures. In the auction, a mage by the name of Elias Ainsworth buys her and sets her as his new apprentice much to Chise’s shock.
In the first episode, we are given enough backstory to understand Chise’s situation and sympathize with her lack of a good home. Seeing as how much of a horrible childhood she had, I have grown to be compelled to her character and how she develops throughout the series.
As Elias takes Chise under his care and making her into his own apprentice, it was really entertaining for both of these characters trying to figure each other out. In Elias’ side, he wants to be accommodating and kind to Chise but on the other hand, Chise is just suspicious as well as desperate to find a place she can call home.
The whole thing felt similar to Beauty and the Beast as Elias did a straightforward proposal to Chise in becoming his future bride. In that respect, I have no idea why Elias has gotten to that decision other than the fact that he just fancies Chise.
The second episode felt similar to the Harry Potter series as Elias and Chise roam around rural and modern Britain coupled with the appearance of creatures and individuals that were magical in nature. We get to meet a few other mages and also understand why Elias decided to take in Chise as his apprentice after another mage, Varley, tried her magical powers out.
It was interesting to see how Chise’s gloomy childhood got her to create this garden, with accurate detail, using her uncontrolled, raw magic power – much to the shock of Varley which led to scolding Elias’ incompetence as a mage.
The third episode was my personal favorite, especially when Chise started to interact with dragons. This one dragon in particular which was already on his last living days shared a wonderful dream with Chise about him, in his glory days, soaring throughout the vast blue sky.
It was honestly a great episode that dealt with how death was a blessing of sorts, in a dragon’s perspective, and that no one had a valid reason to be sad about dying. I think this episode warrants a separate article, which I will be talking about later this week.
Honestly, this new show is so good as it tries to balance out the seriousness and comedy in its dialogue. I love how the show tries to calm itself down by adding this really good funny moment and transition into seriousness as smooth as it can possibly be – which is something I must give praise about this show.
It is not much of a bore but rather, it keeps viewers entertained with the dynamic character interaction as well as compelled to learn more about the world this show is set in – the magical creatures, the people and the nature of the magic portrayed.
I wouldn’t be surprised if this becomes the best anime of the season, if it kept this sort of balance between seriousness and comedy in its future episodes.
What do you think of the Ancient Magus’ Bride? Share your thoughts in the comments below!