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View Poll Results: Madoka Magica - Episode 08 Rating
Perfect 10 170 72.65%
9 out of 10 : Excellent 42 17.95%
8 out of 10 : Very Good 12 5.13%
7 out of 10 : Good 4 1.71%
6 out of 10 : Average 1 0.43%
5 out of 10 : Below Average 2 0.85%
4 out of 10 : Poor 0 0%
3 out of 10 : Bad 3 1.28%
2 out of 10 : Very Bad 0 0%
1 out of 10 : Painful 0 0%
Voters: 234. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 2011-02-24, 12:23   Link #41
panzerfan
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I don't know if there is a mechanism to cleanse the grief seeds Kazu-kun. Under most magical girl convention, such things might exist. Unfortunately, based off of my own shallow understanding of Gen from his works, there may be no recourse...
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:23   Link #42
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Originally Posted by panzerfan View Post
On this, I feel terrible for Homura. I feel a vibe of Hinamizawa recursion of time stronger than ever right now.
Me too. The fact Madoka almost managed to remember Homura reminded me a lot of Higurashi.

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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
Needless to say, I'm pretty disappointed that the anime went in such a predictable direction. However, at least they didn't leave the big reveal for the last episode, so the ending itself might contain a surprise or two.
Until now, I thought I'd be disappointed if it turned out the oldest and most popular predicitons were right, however this was so well executed I couldn't help but absolutely love this awesome episode. Perhaps I'll change my mind once the euphoria of the moment subsides.
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:24   Link #43
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A really interesting thought that it's in line with my main theory:

Quote:
Hmm... I think it's clear now why QB wants Madoka's soul so much. Since her soul is supposed to contain limitless potential, if she makes a contract with him, the energy will be enough for whatever QB is incubating to hatch. End of the world?
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:25   Link #44
Mentar
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I should say first that I wasn't able to watch ep8 so far, but I might still be able to give some feedback already.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kazu-kun View Post
Here's a good question: If tainted MG can become witch, can cleansing grief seed turn her back to human?
Let me copy/paste what I wrote after ep7. I didn't get any feedback to it back then, but... maybe I'm more lucky today *shrug*

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentar
So yes, I do consider QB to be either a manifestation of the devil, or a demon working in his name. I also have had a weird purely 100% speculative thought I've been mulling over for a while. Nearly no evidence either, but still...

We do know that Soul Gems are containers of the soul. Likewise, it seems obvious that Grief Seeds seem to have a similar function for witches, and they have some strange compatibility with Soul Gems (the aspect of removing darkness from the SG by placing it into the GS)

So here's my thought: What if the Grief Seeds are _also_ containers of the soul - the witches' soul? They have names - why not souls, aswell? And that by first fouling up a grief seed until it's full of darkness and then feeding it into QB actually condemns the soul contained within the Grief Seed to hell?

It would explain QB's interest in motivating MGs to go hunt for GS's. It would also be consistent with the devil's/demons' general function attributed to them: To corrupt souls and dragging them to hell. If furthermore my expectation is correct that witches are actually fallen MGs, it would also make perfect sense for QB to contract as many MGs as possible and having them fight between each other: Any expenditure of magic fouls up the SGs, and there seems to be no way to undo this other than tainting GS's to the max, and then tossing them into QB (hell).

Finally: Remember what QB said? That there's a chance that witches could _revive_ from a GS under certain circumstances? What if the manifestations of witches are also just soulless husks, and it's actually the GS that's the soul of the witch? And that unless a GS is devoured by QB, there's still hope to revive the soul inside? If that's the case, there might be hope even for killed witches, as long as the Grief Seed isn't gone.

Makes me wonder what happened to the GS Homura collected in 3. Did she feed it to QB? Maybe she didn't. Maybe there's still some hope for whoever was "in there".

Yes, a far-out theory with only projection (based on my suspicion that witches and MGs are actually very much alike). But it would at least offer a fairly sensible possible explanation of what the POINT of the whole MG might be - if my suspicion is correct that QB is either working for the devil or the devil himself.

Just another little theory...
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:25   Link #45
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Sheba: So says the one with Sakuya as an avie.

As to this episode... Is it even possible? As Klash mentioned, the darned thing shattered. How could you even cleanse it when it's technically in pieces?

Mentar: Or Kyuubey might not be working for anyone at all. Eldritch Abominations of the Lovecraftian vein don't need reasons for being what they are, since in many ways they're madness incarnate. Stuff like malice are ultimately human concepts, that mean nothing to entities like, oh, the King n Yellow or the Blind Ape of Truth.
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:26   Link #46
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Originally Posted by Triple_R View Post
No, I'm done. The revelations made in this episode make Kyubey indefensible.

Needless to say, I'm pretty disappointed that the anime went in such a predictable direction. However, at least they didn't leave the big reveal for the last episode, so the ending itself might contain a surprise or two.
I'd have to agree with your disappointment. I think a morally ambiguous nature is more interesting than an evil bastard one. I was also hoping that the show would take a turn of events that met nobody's speculations. It's usually more interesting when a show can take a turn of events that makes sense while it was pointing us in a different direction.

In this case, they did a lot to make it seem like Kyubey was an evil/bad entity that screwed over the girls he contracted with. Yet, until now it wasn't particularly conclusive due to two valid arguments. The first that he was a non-human entity that could not comprehend human morals and standards (along with their feelings) so they basically meant nothing to him. The second, and probably more important was that the witches needed to be dealt with to stop all the bad things they caused, and thus good came out of what Kyubey was doing.

With this episode, they're now seemingly saying "Yup, he's evil, just like we've been blatantly pushing towards this entire time." At the very least, if they wanted to make him evil I feel like they shouldn't have built it up so much before confirming it and made it a little less obvious. Oh well. Hopefully the writers have some surprises under their sleeves before this all ends.
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:39   Link #47
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As Kyoko once said, creating a miracle also creates an equivalent despair. However, we now know this does not only apply to the wishes, but to the Puella Magi themselves. The power they receive by asking for a miracle goes hand in hand with the Witches, the creatures of despair.

In a way, to purify a Soul Gem with a Grief Seed is to place the despair the Puella Magi feels onto one that has already fallen. The Puella Magi are hanging onto whatever hope they have by pushing the fallen down even further.

There's no way to save those who have already gone off the deep end, so why not just make use of them? Apparently, this is the current system that Kyubey and the Puella Magi follow.
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:43   Link #48
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so, i was trying mah hardest not to read spoilers for this, but alas! i failed. DX

DAYUM! so it almost went as predicted. i say, i must watch it first before putting my full thoughts about it. gawd,i'm nervous to watch it for some reason. DX
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:43   Link #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kanon View Post
Until now, I thought I'd be disappointed if it turned out the oldest and most popular predicitons were right, however this was so well executed I couldn't help but absolutely love this awesome episode.
Well, I haven't watched the episode yet, so I might end up agreeing with you on the execution aspect of it. However, the bare facts on paper are a bit disappointing to me.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Mangz View Post
I'd have to agree with your disappointment. I think a morally ambiguous nature is more interesting than an evil bastard one. I was also hoping that the show would take a turn of events that met nobody's speculations. It's usually more interesting when a show can take a turn of events that makes sense while it was pointing us in a different direction.
I strongly agree. That's what I had been hoping for. I was hoping that all of the "bad vibes" were epic level misdirection. Ah well, you win some, you lose some.


Quote:

In this case, they did a lot it seem like Kyubey was an evil/bad entity that screwed over the girls he contracted with. Yet, until now it wasn't particularly conclusive due to two valid arguments. The first that he was a non-human entity that could not comprehend human morals and standards (along with their feelings) so they basically meant nothing to him. The second, and probably more important was that the witches needed to be dealt with to stop all the bad things they caused, and thus good came out of what Kyubey was doing.
Right. And this episode dashes the second defense, of course. I'm certainly not inclined to defend Kyubey on the first defense alone.


Quote:
With this episode, they're now seemingly saying "Yup, he's evil, just like we've been blatantly pushing towards this entire time." At the very least, if they wanted to make him evil I feel like they shouldn't have built it up so much before confirming it and made it a little less obvious. Oh well. Hopefully the writers have some surprises under their sleeves before this all ends.
Totally agree with you on all these points.
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:51   Link #50
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What. Spoiler tags already? I'm outta here.
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:57   Link #51
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Please, guys. THAT complaint can't hold water in ANY way. There were predictions going in all directions. In the end, some of them HAVE to be proven right, and the others wrong. There's no way around that, and there's no pleasing everyone.

I feel that on this board, people close to my position have been tl;dr textwalled by the vigorous QB response team, who have insisted that things were completely ambiguous and that there were many possible explanations for what was depicted. Personally I disagreed with this assessment, but that's what this side has been saying. So please don't suddenly change your tune and claim that the show was too obviously "QB is evil" all along. I'll readily concede that there WAS justification for continuing the QB defense till now - just that I disagreed based on my earlier experiences with the scriptwriter.

So let me repeat once more what I wrote right from the beginning:

1) Urobuchi Gen's storytelling is very methodic with a strong emphasis on logical developments

2) He also spends alot of effort to explain the motivations of the characters - why they do what they do

3) He is ruthless and tends to pick the worst possible _logical_ option if he nixes someone. Assume the worst case which makes sense

4) He will NOT go for a cheesy "all is fine now" ending. He won't go for catastrophe either. It will be bittersweet and painful, with a feeling of achievement tinged by a strong feeling of loss

And so far he's right on track. So I suggest we do the very same we've done up to now, which is collecting clues, trying to keep a close eye on the character motivations, and things will turn out fine. THIS in my eyes is GOOD storytelling: Which has enough surprises but manages to keep the story coherent WITHOUT stupid turns with high shock value but little sense.
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Old 2011-02-24, 12:59   Link #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kazu-kun View Post
Here's a good question:

Quote:
If tainted MG can become witch, can cleansing grief seed turn her back to human?
It's seemingly impossible. Did You notice the different designs of SG and GS? This episode explains the reason - SG is shattered to reveal GS. The process is like cooking egg. Once you have an egg cooked, you can't turn it back to a raw one.
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Old 2011-02-24, 13:04   Link #53
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Spoiler for The face of the "just as planned":


As expected Homura isn't a "good" character but neither is evil, she is as gray as other character were portrayed, but what I would call self-centered is her apparent obsession to keep Madoka away from making a contract to the point to affect other who get in her way.

I have to wait a week to see about Kyouko's whereabouts.


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Originally Posted by herbert View Post
It's seemingly impossible. Did You notice the different designs of SG and GS? This episode explains the reason - SG is shattered to reveal GS. The process is like cooking egg. Once you have an egg cooked, you can't turn it back to a raw one.
Why not?
You are using an egg as example then, why not water?
It can become ice with cold but with enough warmth it can turn back to water.
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Old 2011-02-24, 13:07   Link #54
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... and I'm back. (Still not reading spoiler tags, though)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentar View Post
I feel that on this board, people close to my position have been tl;dr textwalled by the vigorous QB response team, who have insisted that things were completely ambiguous and that there were many possible explanations for what was depicted. Personally I disagreed with this assessment, but that's what this side has been saying. So please don't suddenly change your tune and claim that the show was too obviously "QB is evil" all along.
The accusation of "changing tune" is not really fair, especially when several people, including Triple_R, actually extrapolated in the Kyubey character thread that it is what they feel some hours before episode 8 even aired.
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Old 2011-02-24, 13:12   Link #55
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Why not?
You are using an egg as example then, why not water?
It can become ice with cold but with enough warmth it can turn back to water.
Because SG looks like an egg?

I mentioned SG must be broken first then GS appears. Eggs are just an example to illustrate my conclusion, not reasoning.
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Old 2011-02-24, 13:14   Link #56
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Originally Posted by Scrooge McDuck View Post
The accusation of "changing tune" is not really fair, especially when several people, including Triple_R, actually extrapolated in the Kyubey character thread that it is what they feel some hours before episode 8 even aired.
That wasn't directed at you or Triple_R, but at Mangz, who wrote:

Quote:
With this episode, they're now seemingly saying "Yup, he's evil, just like we've been blatantly pushing towards this entire time." At the very least, if they wanted to make him evil I feel like they shouldn't have built it up so much before confirming it and made it a little less obvious.
My point is that they managed to keep things in a balance so that you COULD pick up clues, and you COULD come to the conclusion, but it wasn't so one-sided to call it "blatant pushing".

In other words, I want to defend the scriptwriter. IMHO he's done a tremendous job

Quote:
Originally Posted by herbert
It's seemingly impossible. Did You notice the different designs of SG and GS? This episode explains the reason - SG is shattered to reveal GS. The process is like cooking egg. Once you have an egg cooked, you can't turn it back to a raw one.
For what it's worth: As someone who's been predicting Sayaka's death every single ep since ep4, let me go on record that I think there's still hope for her. I suspect that as long as the Grief Seed hasn't been devoured by QB, there's a hope for revival.
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Old 2011-02-24, 13:15   Link #57
Miraluka
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Originally Posted by herbert View Post
Because SG looks like an egg?

I mentioned SG must be broken first then GS appears. Eggs are just an example to illustrate my conclusion, not reasoning.
Water takes the form of the recipient, if water can be polluted it also can be cleansed.

Of course, thats the way I see their souls and the cycle to become one or other.
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Old 2011-02-24, 13:19   Link #58
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Well Mentar, the absolute worst case is to keep playing off on that Romance between Kamijou, Hitomi and Sayaka and have bloody conclusion all around. Gen Urobuchi has done this before where Sayaka like protagonist found herself a pawn in a xanato gambit by a love interest and whatnot... Urobuchi enjoys well intentioned extremists plotting and putting a consequence pileup which generally leads to gorefest at a certain point, so I am actually astonished at how little blood resulted from Sayaka becoming a witch.

I am fascinated by Urobuchi the personality. His scripts to me are secondary to him the man almost... where does he stand on the matter of metaethics and so forth grapples me. He does not do answer arc much, leaving it mostly to the audience, and that is why I've been very conservative regarding what revelation he may wish to actually disclose via Incubator and Homura.

I do feel that a meat grinder in Walpurgisnacht is incoming however. By not triggering an all-out clash in this episode, Urobuchi seems to be holding back on the moment of the bloody conclusion for later...
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Old 2011-02-24, 13:23   Link #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentar View Post
Please, guys. THAT complaint can't hold water in ANY way.
We're probably going to have to agree to disagree here. There's a difference between a prediction held by a few viewers turning out to be true, and the oldest and most common predictions turning out to be true. It would probably not be an exaggeration to say that 80% or more of the people watching this show were predicting and/or expecting an eventual clear-cut "Kyubey is evil" reveal.

To me, if 80% or more of your viewers can make big, accurate predictions for how a series will go near/at the end, and they can make these predictions after just two or three episodes (or even after one episode, in many cases), that's very predictable.

Now, in fairness, how big a deal that is well change from viewer to viewer. It doesn't change the fact, for example, that this anime will still go down as an incredible deconstruction of the magical girl genre. This anime is probably one that will age beautifully, like fine wine.

Also, you seem to like picking up on clues, and being able to predict what will happen next because of it. And that's perfectly fine. For people like yourself, the anime is fine the way it is, and I respect that.

However, I personally prefer being surprised.


Quote:

I feel that on this board, people close to my position have been tl;dr textwalled by the vigorous QB response team,
I personally felt that the hints surrounding Kyubey were almost too obvious, and just in case the anime went in a different direction than what was commonly expected, I thought it would be good for people to be prepared for that.

But hey, all of that is moot now. You were right, Mentar. Kudos to you.


Quote:
who have insisted that things were completely ambiguous and that there were many possible explanations for what was depicted.
I didn't think that they were completely ambiguous. I frequently admitted to Kyubey having "bad vibes" all around him. I just thought it was possible that the "bad vibes" were misdirection. But, they clearly weren't misdirection.


Quote:
I'll readily concede that there WAS justification for continuing the QB defense till now - just that I disagreed based on my earlier experiences with the scriptwriter.
I appreciate you writing that. Thank you.


Quote:

THIS in my eyes is GOOD storytelling: Which has enough surprises but manages to keep the story coherent WITHOUT stupid turns with high shock value but little sense.
You can do effective plot twists without them being stupid turns that make little sense.

I have to be frank: I've never liked it when writers telegraph their plots like this. It's my biggest complaint with Tanigawa's work on the Haruhi novels. So I'm not just picking on Gen here.
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Old 2011-02-24, 13:32   Link #60
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Originally Posted by Mentar View Post
My point is that they managed to keep things in a balance so that you COULD pick up clues, and you COULD come to the conclusion, but it wasn't so one-sided to call it "blatant pushing".
Well, I did say something like "the show built on the expectation that Kyubey is evil so much" in the other thread. I don't know if that's the same as "blatant pushing" in your book.

I do feel that I can't properly discuss the writing quality before actually watching the episode. So before I spoil myself silly (did I just see a name down there? What did they do? What happened to them? Argh) I shall take my leave (hopefully for real this time) and see you again in three days (if there's still a discussion to be had by then).
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