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View Poll Results: Madoka Magica - Episode 03 Rating
Perfect 10 117 56.25%
9 out of 10 : Excellent 57 27.40%
8 out of 10 : Very Good 23 11.06%
7 out of 10 : Good 4 1.92%
6 out of 10 : Average 2 0.96%
5 out of 10 : Below Average 1 0.48%
4 out of 10 : Poor 0 0%
3 out of 10 : Bad 1 0.48%
2 out of 10 : Very Bad 1 0.48%
1 out of 10 : Painful 2 0.96%
Voters: 208. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 2011-08-03, 00:23   Link #401
Witch of Uncertainty
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post

I think that Mami was trying to show off for her new friends.




I just took it as Mami thinking "Finally!" given how Charlotte was proving to be a hard opponent for Mami to put down.

It's kind of like trying to swat away a fly for a few minutes, and you finally get him. Of course it'll give you a sense of satisfaction.
"It's like my body is floating. It's the first time I'm happy fighting, because I'm not alone anymore." - or whatever she says.
I don't think it was putting a gun against Charlottes face that made her happy. It was her situation. The smile, when shooting Charlotte) was directed towards Madoka. It wasn't pleasure in killing, but rather her being so happy that she, well, wasn't alone anymore. In the transformation scene, she did explain how happy she was.

Killing Charlotte was sort of the symbol of Madoka joining her.

That said, I also thought she was the bad guy. Until ep 3, that is.
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Old 2011-08-03, 01:25   Link #402
Dawnstorm
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Originally Posted by Kaioshin Sama View Post
I definitely gathered that too. Too me the way she handled the Akemi situation (refusing to listen and seeming like she was pulling off some grand manipulative scheme by tying her up and seemingly enjoying it) and just the way she came across right until the final moments of the episode when she and Madoka were alone made me feel like she was trying to bait Madoka into some trap by isolating her from the other girls. I'm kind of confused why she was acting so suspicious and why she seemed to be straddling on the line of unveiling some ulterior motive right up until her death and kind of hope that behaviour is explained in a flashback or something at the very least.
Well, she did have an uterior motive; it just wasn't as sinister as I expected. In fact, it wasn't sinister at all. She was lonely and breaking under the pressure and she wanted friends. Why didn't she come out with that in the first place?

She was conflicted: the very thing that made her want friends (or better: companions) is also the thing that made it hard for her to pursuade others. To take the pressure of that guilt from herself, she pushed the responsibility onto Kyubey. When she had her little talk with Homura in ep3, she explicitly told Homura that Kyubey had chosen them, they are involved. I think she was trying to convince herself as much as Homura, there. Look at the earlier conversation, where she told the girls to take their time choosing a wish. She didn't have the time and now wishes she had had the opportunity to select a wish. Kyubey then says something to the point that he wants them contract as soon as possible. Mami's coy answer (girls don't like pushy boys) shows her position pretty well: please join, but do it in a way so you take the maximum profit out of it.

Homura is in the way, so of course Mami would tie her up. I mean, there are two competent magical girls in town. If they can ward off witches, who knows, maybe Madoka will change her mind? Just look at Mami's behaviour just before: first cautioning Madoka that she wouldn't have time for friends or boy friends, and then - once Madoka comes out - she drops all pretense, responsible Mami disappears and wishful-thinking Mami pops out, suggesting Madoka could wish for a cute boyfriend, of all things. (Hasn't she, only moments ago, told Madoka there isn't any time for that sort of thing?)

Madoka pretty much surprised her with that sincere, naive "you're not alone," and now she's riding the high. I found this totally plausible and it did reverse the impression I had of her. But that creepy feeling didn't go away:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Witch of Uncertainty View Post
I don't think it was putting a gun against Charlottes face that made her happy. It was her situation. The smile, when shooting Charlotte) was directed towards Madoka. It wasn't pleasure in killing, but rather her being so happy that she, well, wasn't alone anymore.
See, I do agree with that. The creepy feeling didn't stem from her motives, but from something less tangible in her personality.

To explain, I have to tell you about my relationship to guns. I hate them. I couldn't hold them with such an expression, much less fire them. I couldn't shoot a phone box, or even a pillow like that. I'm biased like that. It's not that I think Mami took pleasure in killing. Far from it, actually. I had the impression that Mami didn't get what it means to fire a gun. Her fights reminded me more of ballet than a fight (a Yuki Kajiura ballet - Mami does have one of the most beautiful pieces of music in the show). This - to me - was apparent from the beginning. From her first fight against the familiar in episode 1. It's sort of understandable; we don't exactly know, but I think it's safe to assume that Mami didn't have gun training before she became a magical girl. But since she's a magical girl (i.e. not necessarily a good shot with a real gun) the choice of weapon also says something about her attitude, I think. It's the most impersonal of weapons, point and pull the trigger. There are many ways you can fire a gun: I'm scared - keep away; quick and efficient... Mami took the show-off route from the beginning.

Yes, Mami putting a gun to doll Charlotte's head and pulling the trigger was an expression of her situational light-headedness, but it was also an extension of her fighting style. It's quite possible that "style" was what she used to cover up her fear, I get it. And as I said, I'm aware I might be unfair to her.

But still, her fighting style, to me, appears to be a combination of cold-blooded and show-off, and that's frightening. Interestingly, viewed in the context of your avarage magical girl show, the effect is lessened. I mean take away the gun and give her a cutesy wand, and see what you get. So I can sort of see, if you're expecting a magical girl show, how this might shed a different light on her. Not sure that's the case.

As I said above, I didn't actually view episode 3 as a game changer. Perhaps I watched too few magical girl shows in the past?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sol Falling View Post
From the very beginning, Madoka Magica talks about wishes--magical energy born from hope and raw emotion. This is a story whose fundamental premise was borne from the transcription of our hearts into reality. So the death and tragedy in this show was never meant as a gratuity, degenerate cynicism presented for the worst facets of humanity to revel in in despair and contempt for humanity; rather, they set a stage, a mirror of reality--to grant each of us humans a heartfelt opportunity to think about what meaning, what hope really does still remain for each of our pitiful, chained existences.
Exactly. I was sold on Madoka after episode 1. There's this girl with little self-confidence (as evidenced by her dream) who bears responsibility at home beyond what's expected at her age... And she thinks if she were like that magical girl up there she could be useful (which she clearly already is, as Mom relies on you...).

If you contrast that very first fight, Homura vs. the giant witch, isn't that a lot more ugly than anything you've seen from Mami? (Especially her death.)

Ah, well, as you can probably see, I really love that show. Not that I think it's flawless, but it's among the best I've seen. And, yes, I did have to adjust my interpretations a couple of times during the show (interestingly mostly in places that nobody else seemed to find problematic, while I immediately took to the least popular [if you've seen the show you probably know what I'm talking about] twist in the show, thinking of course, now it all makes sense... )
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Old 2011-08-03, 01:57   Link #403
Triple_R
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This post is primarily a response to Sol and Dawnstorm's latest posts on this thread. It will require spoiler space, though, given that it involves a major spoiler.

Spoiler for Major Madoka Magica final episode spoilers:
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Last edited by Triple_R; 2011-08-03 at 02:36.
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Old 2011-08-03, 02:36   Link #404
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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
This post is primarily a response to Sol and Dawnstorm's latest posts on this thread. It will require spoiler space, though, given that it involves a major spoiler.
I'm not going into detail in this thread (overall impressions would be a better place, I think), but I do agree with you here. I think, though, that we might have different interpretations of the ending.
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Old 2011-08-03, 02:37   Link #405
Triple_R
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dawnstorm View Post
I'm not going into detail in this thread (overall impressions would be a better place, I think), but I do agree with you here. I think, though, that we might have different interpretations of the ending.
Probably. I just edited that, by the way, to clarify things and take a more nuanced tone.
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Old 2011-08-03, 02:46   Link #406
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Ah, lol. I already sent a moderately detailed PM, also in interests of not derailing this thread, but I think I see what caused the slip in communication.

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Originally Posted by Sol Falling View Post
Urobochi Gen said that he had nothing but contempt for that thing which men call happiness. However, in the wake of his declaration of such a black view of the nature of hope and the universe, he confessed that his greatest wish was actually to write a story which could make men's hearts soar. Madoka Magica poses the question, not just of an unflinchingly harsh reality which has no sympathy to spare for delusions of hope and idealism--but, in such a harsh reality, whether there actually still something in the end, after all, which you would gladly trade your life for. From the very beginning, Madoka Magica talks about wishes--magical energy born from hope and raw emotion. This is a story whose fundamental premise was borne from the transcription of our hearts into reality. So the death and tragedy in this show was never meant as a gratuity, degenerate cynicism presented for the worst facets of humanity to revel in in despair and contempt for humanity; rather, they set a stage, a mirror of reality--to grant each of us humans a heartfelt opportunity to think about what meaning, what hope really does still remain for each of our pitiful, chained existences.
In this line at the end, I was talking about how Madoka Magica tries to show us how there is still Hope despite us living in such a cold, gruesome world where we are chained, pitiful existences. I wasn't saying that Madoka shows us that hope doesn't exist; rather, what Madoka tells us is that it can only be found after confronting the full scope of the harsh, unfeeling coldness of reality.
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Old 2011-08-03, 03:23   Link #407
Triple_R
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Originally Posted by Sol Falling View Post
Ah, lol. I already sent a moderately detailed PM, also in interests of not derailing this thread, but I think I see what caused the slip in communication.



In this line at the end, I was talking about how Madoka Magica tries to show us how there is still Hope despite us living in such a cold, gruesome world where we are chained, pitiful existences. I wasn't saying that Madoka shows us that hope doesn't exist; rather, what Madoka tells us is that it can only be found after confronting the full scope of the harsh, unfeeling coldness of reality.
I do have a clearer idea of your position now, and I thank you for clarifying it.

I think that your precise wording might be... a tad too stern (Homura-style, shall we say ), but I do see some validity, at least, to your interpretation here. Certainly Gen is arguing that there's at least a darker side to reality, and that true hope requires confronting and overcoming that darker side. As Madoka did.
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Old 2011-10-08, 12:38   Link #408
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I actually didn't even catch that Mami's remains fell onto the table....but now after re-watching that scene, that black goo couldn't be anything but. I feel slightly ill now...
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Old 2012-01-15, 04:32   Link #409
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This episode made me really appreciate the odd imagery they use when dealing with the witches.

I also would've loved to see Kyubey's expression when Homura came to the rescue. That slick bastard.

I honestly wish I could say I felt bad about what happened to Mami but she sort of had it coming. Then again I don't know her full history with Homura so maybe she had a good reason to not want her at her back. Still the real witch was too amusing. Digging in like she(it?) was at a smorgasbord. And those expressions when it was trying to catch Homura, priceless.

Can't wait to see where Madoka and Sayaka go from here.
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Old 2012-03-19, 11:28   Link #410
SRanger
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I was about to drop the series after watching episode 1 and 2. I am so glad I watched episode 3. For someone who has never seen a magical girl series despite a couple episodes of Sailor Moon back on Toonami, this was an awesome experience.

That witch was downright creepy, as someone who fucking hates clowns, this episode was all kinds of dark
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